This diary of Leonard Wood, a medical officer, tells the dramatic story of the last campaign against the Apache chief Geronimo. It is the only journal kept by anyone on that expedition.
Under the command of Capt. Henry Lawton, Wood’s first field duty was to pursue Geronimo on a hard-driving chase from Arizona deep into Old Mexico. Although this expedition never actually seized Geronimo, it wore him down to the point of surrender. Wood’s journal is a firsthand account of what men saw and felt on that dirty, brutal chase through desolate country where the temperature soared to 120 degrees. Unlike official military reports, Wood’s diary vividly describes the strains and weariness, the scant rations and long rides, the quarrels and casualties that soldiers suffered on the western frontier.
Jack C. Lane’s annotation enriches Wood’s journal with sidelights on people, places, and events. His introduction tells how the 1886 campaign against Geronimo was the climax of the Indian wars in the West.