The haunting strain of their flageo- lets and the cadence of the chants came back to him. It shows clearly that, as section after section had been originally added as the tribe increased in number, so cell after cell (or section after section) was successively vacated and left to ruin as their numbers waned, till at last the northern end of the building alone sheltered the poor survivors." Bandelier, "A Visit to the Aboriginal Ruins in the Valley of the Rio Pecos," Papers of the Archaeological Institute of America, American Series, Vol.
He re- called the incredible sight of a buffalo herd that blackened the horizon and the strength of an angry bull hoisting a horse on its horns.
One advocate of peaceful persuasion, a sort of frontier Las Casas, was Fray Jacinto "Cintos" de San Francisco, conqueror-turned-Franciscan lay brother. Unlike many of his religious brethren, Fray Cintos refused to end his days at a comfortable convento among the sedentary Indians close to Mexico City. I do know that they came to see us and to beg that we go baptize their children. Had the viceroy provided a captain, fifty "good Chris- tian" Spaniards, and a hundred peaceful Chichimeca auxiliaries, Fray Cintos believed, "without wars, killing, or taking slaves, the way might have been opened from here to Santa Elena and to the new land where Francisco Vazquez de Coronado went, and many leagues farther." This was a region so im- mense in the friar's mind that he envisioned a thousand or two thousand Franciscans engaged in the conversion of its inhabi- tants. But unfortunately the viceroy, occupied in launching Tristan de Luna y Arellano's ill-starred expedition to La Florida, could not spare the men. Like Las Casas, he in- veighed against Spanish greed and cruelty toward the natives.
As Sindos de Por- tillo, soldier of Cortes, he had been rewarded with Indian tribu- taries, mines, and laborers. He looked instead to the pitifully neglected north and beyond to el nuevo Mexico, the new Mexico, that mysterious land from which the Preliminaries to Conquest 35 Aztecs and their civilization allegedly had sprung, a place Coronado had somehow failed to find. We traveled one hundred and fifty leagues from this city to where there is a great disimilarity in the people. He wanted the Chichimeca war and the killing stopped.
In the hope of seeing in my time another spiritual conquest like that of this land, I set out from this city in the company of two other religious, now more than two years ago, in search of the New Mexico, of which there has been word, although unverified, ever since we came to this land. In the long run, the expenses of such a policy would be less than the cost of waging war. Fray Cintos and Alonso de Zorita were a generation ahead of the times. Still, jealous, self-serving captains more interested in profits than military advantage kept taking natives, peaceful as well as hostile, and War by Fire and Blood After Codice Florentino, central Mexico, 16th century 34 Kiva, Cross, and Crown After Lienzo de Tlaxcala, central Mexico, 16th century Jrt A Peaceful Alternative selling them as slaves. Despite the government's war effort, the Chichimecas struck at will. Not all the Spaniards in New Spain, wrote the disillusioned Enriquez to his successor, would be enough to conquer the wild men of the north. It meant conquest and pacification by sedentary New Spain of the nomadic peoples who inhabited the high deserts and jagged sierras, and who by their ferocity and oneness with the environment more than made up for the sparsity of their presence. Caballero's last entry in the Pecos-San Miguel books was for a baptism on March 4, 1828.
They were the "Chichimecas," a generic term of con- tempt picked up by the Spaniards from the natives of central Mexico meaning something like "dirty, uncivilized dogs." Far- ranging hunters and gatherers who planted maize only mar- ginally, they presented the conquerors with a wholly different challenge. They refused to work voluntarily in stinking mines. c vcyntc Y fietc bafta cl ano t5 trefnta y fqf que boluio a Seuifla con rre* ©cfucompama*:* Preliminaries to Conquest 31 Juan Troyano, veteran of Coronado's army, had not A Veteran Remembers forgotten. Charles Fletcher Lummis, The Man Who Married the Moon and Other Pueblo Indian Folk-stories (New York, 1894), pp. Ruiz told Bandelier that the last five Pecos, "Antonio (gobernador, and still living at Jemez), Gregorio, Goya, Juan Domingo, and Francisco," were removed to Jemez by Jemez officials in 1840. More than a quarter-century had passed, yet he could still see the crowded plaza of Cicuye, the people's feather robes and their turquoise. For a generation and more, from roughly 1550 to 1585, most Spanish frontiersmen so abhorred the Chichimecas that they could think of no alternative to enslavement or annihila- tion.