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Alsate

Alsate, also known as Arzate, Arzatti, and Pedro Múzquiz, (ca. 1820 – 1881/1882) was the last chief of the Chisos band of Mescalero Apaches.

He was the son of Miguel Múzquiz, who was captured by the Mescalero as a boy at what is now Melchor Múzquiz in Coahuila, Mexico, and raised among them, and his Indian wife. When he came of age and proved himself, Alsate became the leader of a Mescalero band. They ranged through the Davis Mountains, Chisos Mountains and Chinati Mountains in the Big Bend area of Texas, the Sierra del Carmen of Coahuila and the Sierra Alamos in Chihuahua north of the Bolsón de Mapimí.

Relations between the Indians and the authorities on both sides of the border were generally peaceful at first, although Arzate was almost shot for stealing the coat of the trader John D. Burgess; Arzate's band had intended to rob Burgess' convoy but the two talked and ended up as friends, and Burgess had given Arzate his coat as a gift. However, in 1878 complaints to the Mexican authorities about the band's raids on farms and traders led to President Porfirio Díaz ordering Alsate's arrest; Colonel José Garza Galán de Santa Rosa was dispatched with a force of a hundred men and surprised him and his followers at his farm near San Carlos de Chihuahua, and they were extradited to Mexico City to be jailed in la Acordada. Arzate's father was in the group and was freed after convincing his brother Manuel of his identity. Manuel Múzquiz wrote a note requesting clemency for Arzate, but could not release him; however, in December 1879 he and his followers were able to escape from the carts transporting them and vanish into the mountains. The following year Colonel Ortiz of El Paseo del Norte lured them into a trap at San Carlos by promising a peace treaty; they were set upon after eating and drinking heavily at a celebratory feast, and while those few who were able to fight were killed, the rest were sold into slavery. Alsate and his war chiefs Colorado and Zorillo were executed at Ojinaga.