On Dec. 28, 1872, the Yavapai people’s shelter of Skeleton Cave, located in Salt River Canyon, Arizona, was attacked by the U.S. Army. The U.S. forces — comprised of about 250 men that included three companies of U.S. cavalry, plus Akimel O’odham (Pima) and Apache scouts — arrived in the morning and took up position around the mouth of Skeleton Cave.
Surrounded, the Yavapai refused to surrender. The soldiers opened fire and dropped boulders on those who gathered at the mouth of the cave. Close to 100 Yavapai adults and children were massacred.
In 1925, the Fort McDowell Yavapais retrieved the bones of their massacred relatives and brought them home for burial in a mass grave on the reservation.
This is one of countless massacres in U.S. history.