Christopher Carson eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 220 pages of information about Christopher Carson.

There was no simultaneous discharge but a rattling fire, occupying perhaps sixty seconds.  Forty-three Indian warriors were struck by the bullets.  Eleven fell instantly dead; the others were more or less crippled by their wounds.  Still the brave Indians rushed on, when suddenly there was opened upon them another deadly fire from the revolvers.  This was a reinforcement of the strength of their foes which the savages had not anticipated.  They hesitated, staggered as if smitten by a heavy blow, and then slowly and sullenly retreated, until they were far beyond pistol range.  Some of the mountaineers were on horseback to carry swift aid to any imperilled comrade.  Kit Carson was also mounted and with his eagle eye was watching every act of his little army.

One of his aids, a mountaineer by the name of Cotton, was thrown from his horse, which slipped upon some smooth stones, and fell upon his rider, fastening him helpless to the ground.  Six Indians near by rushed, with exultant yells and gleaming tomahawks, for his scalp.  Kit Carson, calling on two or three to follow him, sprang from his horse and with the speed of an antelope was by the side of his fallen comrade.  The crack of his rifle was instantly heard; the foremost of the savages gave one convulsive bound, uttered a death cry and fell weltering in his blood.  The rest immediately fled, but before they could reach a place of safety three more were struck down by the balls of those who had followed Carson.  Two only of the six savages escaped.

CHAPTER VIII.

Encampments and Battles.

The Renewal of the Battle.—­Peculiarities of the Fight.—­The Rout.—­Encampment in the Indian Village.—­Number of Trappers among the Mountains.—­The New Rendezvous.—­Picturesque Scene of the Encampment.—­The Missionary and the Nobleman.—­Brown’s Hole.—­The Navajoes.—­Kit Carson Purveyor at the Fort.—­Trapping at the Black Hills.—­Again upon the Yellowstone.—­Pleasant Winter Quarters.—­Signs of the Indians.—­Severe Conflict.—­Reappearance of the Indians.—­Their utter Discomfiture.

There was now a brief lull in the battle.  The Indians had not left the field and by no means acknowledged a defeat.  With very considerable military skill they selected a new position for the renewal of the fight, on broken ground among a chaos of rocks, about one hundred and fifty yards from the line of their opponents.  They were evidently aware of the strong reserve approaching to join the trappers.  With this reserve it was necessary that the trappers should make the attack, for they could not venture to move on their way leaving so powerful a hostile army behind them.

The Indians manifested very considerable powers of reasoning, and no little strategic skill.  They took the defensive, and chose a position from which it would be almost impossible to dislodge them.  The trappers awaited the arrival of their comrades, and obtained a fresh supply of ammunition.  The whole united band prepared for a renewal of the battle.  Thus far not one of the trappers had been wounded, excepting Cotton, who was severely bruised by the fall of his horse.

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Christopher Carson from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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