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Apache Chief

Apache Chief(1949)

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Along a Western trail, Apache chief Grey Cloud, his son Black Wolf and two braves, Pani and Lame Bull, attack a wagon. In the ensuing shootout, all of the wagoners are killed, and Grey Cloud is fatally shot. Before dying, Grey Cloud begs his son to do everything he can to strike down the white man. At the village, Black Wolf and his men report Grey Cloud's death to his brother Big Crow, but claim that they were the innocent victims in the attack. Later, when speaking to his son Young Eagle, Big Crow claims the attack was in violation of the treaty the tribe recently signed with Col. Martin of the U.S. Army. When Lt. Brown and his cavalry platoon arrive at the Indians' village, Big Crow repeats Black Wolf's charges. Realizing that Black Wolf has lied, Brown asks to speak with him, but Big Crow says he has gone to nearby Sacred Mountain to pray. After she learns the truth from the lecherous Black Wolf, Young Eagle's sweetheart Watona reports to Big Crow. When Big Crow confronts Black Wolf, he arrogantly admits lying, so Big Crow asks village holy man Mohaska to communicate the spirits' decree of punishment. Mohaska then banishes Black Wolf to Sacred Mountain, where he must spend five days without food or weapons. After Big Crow confiscates Black Wolf's knife and orders him to leave, Watona feels guilty. She persuades Young Eagle to return the knife to him, and the next morning, Black Wolf stabs the driver of another wagon. After he steals the passengers' jewelry, Black Wolf finds Watona at a nearby river and gives her one of the stolen items: a gold pocket watch. Although Black Wolf tells Watona to keep the watch well hidden, she pins it to the front of her dress and returns to the village. When Martin and Brown arrive later, they notice the watch, which bears an inscription proving that it was stolen during the raid. Watona admits that Black Wolf gave her the watch, after which Big Crow begs Martin to delay his arrest so that Black Wolf can first be punished according to tribal law. Martin agrees and leaves, and later, Black Wolf is tried and sentenced to walk a gauntlet of stick-wielding maidens, who beat him on the head. Afterward, a pair of braves is escorting Black Wolf to Martin, when suddenly, Pani and Lame Bull free him. Later, at the scene of another wagon raid, Young Eagle tells Martin that he knows from the tracks left by his horse's crooked hoof that Black Wolf was involved. Young Eagle then tries to convince Black Wolf that he wants to join him, but Black Wolf suspects him immediately and ties him to a rock in the mountains. Planning to usurp the chieftainship, Black Wolf returns to the village and kills Big Crow. He then kidnaps Watona and takes her to his hideout in an attempt to force Mohaska, who is in charge of the tribe, to concede control. After Young Eagle struggles free from his ropes, he returns to the village, where Mohaska immediately installs him as chief. Then, Young Eagle tracks down Black Wolf at his hideout, kills him and rescues Watona.