"These people, they smile at me and show their teeth. But, but it's the eyes that bite. I have not seen the back of anyone's head since I came here. Their eyes are all over my body like, like dirty fingers. I think they would turn their backs, I would leap upon them and my flesh would have to be washed off like filth. You should not have brought me here. I do not belong with these people.... How could I know I would come back to this. For five years with the Comanches my eyes never saw a tear. Now they see the silent questions: How many mestizo children carry her blood in their veins? Why didn't I kill myself?"
"We're not a big party, son. We're just a handful of people sent out to mark the trail and prepare the ground for those who are gonna come after us. By next summer they'll be 100 families on the move. And they're countin' on us to have a crop ready for them. And if we don't, they'll starve, sure as shootin'. That's why we gotta reach that valley before the winter rains come. We been prayin' that we'd be showed the way. It might just be that you boys are the answer to our prayers.... Leading our wagons to the San Juan, to a valley that's been reserved for us by the Lord, been reserved for His people. So we can plow it and seed it and make it fruitful in His eyes."
"That's right, son. That's why I keep my hat on, so my horns don't show. Why I've got more wives than Solomon hisself. At least that's what folks around here say. And if they don't say it, they, they think it."
"Elena de la Madriaga: Ladies and gentleman, it seems like if the only embarrassment here tonight is my presence, if the truth will quiet your unspoken questions, I give it gladly. For five years, I was the woman of the Comanche Stone Calf. He treated me like a wife. The work was hard, the scoldings frequent. And occasionally he beat me. I did not bear him any children. I know that many of you regard me as a degraded woman. Degraded by the touch of a savage Comanche, by having had to live as one of them. You said, why did I not kill myself. I did not. Why, I, I can't. Guthrie McCabe: Well I as hell can. She didn't kill herself because her religion forbids it. You know sometimes it takes a lot more courage to live than it does to die."
"Signal smokes, war drums, feathered bonnets against the western sky. New messiahs, young leaders are ready to hurl the finest light cavalry in the world against Fort Stark. In the Kiowa village, the beat of drums echoes in the pulsebeat of the young braves. Fighters under a common banner, old quarrels forgotten, Comanche rides with Arapaho, Apache with Cheyenne. All chant of war. War to drive the white man forever from the red man's hunting ground."
"No troop or squadron or regiment's gonna keep the Apaches on this reservation unless they want to stay here. Five years ago we made a treaty with Cochise. He and his Cherokowas and some of the other Apache bands came on the reservation. They wanted to live here in peace and did for two years. And then Meacham, here, was sent by the Indian ring, the dirtiest, most corrupt political group in our history. And then it began--whiskey but no beef, trinkets instead of blankets, the women degraded, the children sickly, and the men turning into drunken animals. So Cochise did the only thing a decent man could do. He left. Took most of his people and crossed the Rio Bravo into Mexico."
"Custer's dead and around the bloody guidon of the immortal Seventh Cavalry lie 212 officers of the main. Sioux and Cheyenne are on the war path. By military telegraph news of the Custer massacre is flashed across the long, long miles to the southwest. By stagecoach to the hundred settlements and the thousand farms standing under threat of Indian uprising. Pony Express riders know that one more such defeat as Custer's and it would be 100 years before another wagon train dared to cross the plain. And from the Canadian border to the Rio Bravo 10,000 Indians--Comanche, Arapaho, Sioux, and Apache under Sitting Bull, and Crazy Horse, Gaul, and Crow King--are uniting in a common war against the United States cavalry."
"So here they are, the dog-faced soldiers, the regulars, the fifty-cents-a-day professionals riding the outposts of the nation, from Fort Reno to Fort Apache, from Sheridan to Stark. They were all the same. Men in dirty-shirt blue and only a cold page in the history books to mark their passing. But wherever they rode and whatever they fought for, that place became the United States."