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Racine Daily Journal / May 2, 1894

Awful Fate of a Band of Mexican Soldiers.
Crushed in a Canyon by Boulders Hurled by Indians.
Torture Inflicted on a Physician Who Went to Aid the Wounded.

SAN DIEGO, May 2 — News has been received here of another rout of Mexican soldiers by the Yaqui Indians near Gayuma on the Gulf of California. The wild savages have managed to get the best of the forces heretofore sent against them, and it was determined this time to send a force enough to make sure of exterminating them and putting an end to troubles with them. Accordingly 500 soldiers under the command of Gen. Louis Etorres [Luis Torres], general of the northern and western troops, was sent to make the campaign. On the afternoon of March 5th the trail led through a long, narrow, steep defile in the Sierra de Bacatet mountains.

The walls were precipitous and 2000 feet high in places. A skirmish line was sent forward to beat the sides of the canyon which were covered with brush, but without discovering signs of the enemy. Then the column was ordered forward. When in the middle of the defile suddenly huge masses of boulders began to be tumbled from the cliffs above upon the hemmed-in the column, crushing horses and riders into shapeless heaps of quivering flesh. Above the din of the crashing rocks and outcries of the maddened and entrapped soldiers, rose the war shouts of the savages who began pouring deadly volleys on their enemies below. The frightened horses dashed madly through the defile trampling on the dead and wounded soldiers.

Finally a wounded bugler was found with enough strength to sound the call, as the commands of the officers could not be heard and the remnant of the column getting together such wounded as they could, fought their way back to open ground, where the Yaquis dared not follow. It is reported that the Mexicans lost fully 200 killed and wounded. An additional force was being prepared to be sent against the Yaquis. After the battle Dr. Corda, with a small escort, was sent to attend to the wounded and was ambushed. The savages skinned his feet and compelled him to walk. When he sank with exhaustion they killed him with their lanciers.

 

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