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The Apache Indians Spoke Southern Abathaskan for their language.Which is related to the languages of Abathaskan speakers of Alaska and western Canada. The name Apache is believed to be from the Zuni word meaning evil. The Apache people had settled in three desert regions, Great basin, The Sonoran, and the Chihuachuan.
These distinct groups can be organized by dialects:
The Western Apache traditionally occupied most of eastern Arizona and included the White Mountain, Cibuecue, San Carlos, and Northern and Southern Tonto bands. San Carlos, Aravaipa, White Mountain, Northern Tonto, Southern Tonto, and Cibecue in Arizona, Chiricahua and Mimbreno in Arizona and New Mexico, Mescalero (Faraon) in New Mexico and Mexico, Jicarilla in New Mexico and Colorado, Kiowa-Apache (Gataka) in Oklahoma, and Lipan in Texas and Mexico. Western Apache (Coyotero), Eastern Arizona.
They exchanged buffalo hides, tallow and meat, bones that could be worked into needles and scrapers for hides, and salt from the desert with the Pueblos for pottery, cotton, blankets, turquoise, corn and other goods. But at times they simply saw what they wanted and took it. They became known among the Pueblo villages by another name, Apachu, "the enemy".
The Apache's war tactics came naturally to them. The name of their tribe "struck fear" with other tribes on the area. In the late 1800's, one U.S. Army general who had fought them meant it as a grudging compliment when he described the Apache as "tigers of the human species."
The Apache saw themselves differently, they faced constant struggle to survive. When they raided a village, they did so from pure necessity, to provide corn for their families when game was scarce. Most of the time they went their own way, moving from camp to camp in pursuit of deer and buffalo, collecting roots and berries, sometimes planting seeds that they later returned to harvest.
They set up their camps on the outskirts of the pueblos. They dressed in animal skins, used dogs as pack animals, and pitched tent like dwellings made of brush or hide, called wikiups. The wickiup was the most common shelter of the Apache. The dome shaped lodge was constructed of wood poles covered with brush, grass, or reed mats. It contained a fire pit and a smoke hole for a chimney. The Jicarillas and Kiowa-Apaches, which roamed the Plains, used buffalo hide tepees. The basic shelter of the Chiricahua was the domeshaped wickiup made of brush.
The Apaches homes
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