An Apache Named Fun Was he? One can only hope.

painting of apache by bob boze bell
Painting by Bob Boze Bell.

On the San Carlos Apache Reservation in the 1870s the U.S. Army was charged with writing down the names of each tribal member who was eligible to receive rations. The problem the soldiers had was in the Apache culture, it’s rude to ask an Apache his name. Plus, their names are often hard to pronounce, much less spell. This led to the soldiers giving the Apaches creative monikers such as Mickey Free (a popular, fictional, Irish character in a book one of the soldiers was reading) and Curly, who was probably anything but. Some were descriptive—Cut Mouth—and some names were not creative at all, like A-1. But one of the most enigmatic names given was Fun. Was he? One can only hope.

 

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Bob Boze Bell

In 1999, Bob Boze Bell and partners bought True West magazine (published since 1953) and moved the editorial offices to Cave Creek, Arizona. Bell has published and illustrated books on Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday, as well as Classic Gunfights, an Old West gunfight book series. His latest books are The 66 Kid and True West Moments.