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Albert Sieber, (February 1874) in Arizona; Photo: Flanders & Penelon, Photographic Artists.

Albert Sieber (February 27, 1843 – February 19, 1907) was a German-American military figure, prospector, and Chief of Scouts during the Apache Wars.


File:St. Lambertus (Mingolsheim) von Süden.JPG

Church St. Lambertus

He was born in Mingolsheim, Baden, Germany as the 13th of 14 children. He was baptized in 1843, March 1 in St. Lambertus Church, Mingolsheim. His father Johannes died on September 16, 1845.

Between 1848 and 1849, shortly after the "Badian Revolution", his mother Eva Katharina née Fischer, emigrated with her still living 8 children (6 had already died) to the United States.

File:1st Minnesota Monument Gettysburg.jpg

Monument in Gettysburg for the 1st Minnesota Infantry

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Sieber was severely wounded on July 2, 1863 in the Battle of Gettysburg, specifically the Cemetery Ridge engagement.

Albert thus grew up in Pennsylvania and Minnesota. He enlisted on March 4, 1862, in the 1st Minnesota Volunteer Infantry during the American Civil War. After the war, he was a prospector in California, Nevada, and then ended up in Arizona Territory, where he managed a ranch from 1868 to 1871.

General George Crook hired him to be Chief of Scouts in 1871 for much of the Apache Wars. He participated in Crook's Tonto (Apache) campaign (1871–1873). When the Camp Verde reservation was closed, Sieber was told to move Yavapais and Tonto Apaches to the San Carlos Reservation in the middle of winter. He remained employed there and participated in several engagements with Apache groups that had left the reservation.

In 1883 Crook went into the Sierra Madre of Mexico following Geronimo. Sieber was Crook's lead civilian scout. Sieber was in the field but not present when Geronimo surrendered to Lt Gatewood and General Nelson Miles in 1886. Sieber was shot and wounded while on the job in 1887 trying to prevent an outbreak from the reservation. However, he was not happy with the treatment of the Apaches at San Carlos and resumed prospecting in 1891.

Sieber died at Apache Trail, Gila County, Arizona, in a construction accident while leading an Apache work crew that was building the Tontoroad to the new Roosevelt Dam site.

  • He was portrayed by Robert Duvall in the film Geronimo: An American Legend.
  • He was portrayed by John McIntire in the film Apache.
  • Also 1979 in „Mr. Horn“ with Richard Widmark as „Al Sieber“ and David Carradine as „Tom Horn“.[1]
  • The character Ed Bannon portrayed by Charlton Heston in the film Arrowhead was based on Sieber.

See also[]


  • John G. Bourke: On the Border with Crook. University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln 1891, ISBN 0-8094-3583-7;
  • Frank C. Lockwood: More Arizona Characters… University of Arizona, 1943
    • Dan L. Thrapp:[2] Al Sieber: Chief of Scouts. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman 1964, ISBN 0-8061-2770-8
    • Dan L. Thrapp: The Conquest of Apacheria. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman 1967, ISBN 0-8061-1286-7
    • Dan L. Thrapp: Encyclopedia of Frontier Biography Volume III, P-Z, University of Oklahoma Press, (Reprint 1991), ISBN 0-8032-9420-4
  • Britton Davis: The Truth About Geronimo, Bison Books, 1976, ISBN 0-8032-5840-2
  • Angie Debo: Geronimo: The Man, His Time, His Place, University of Oklahoma Press, 1982, ISBN 0-8061-1828-8
  • John S. Goff: Arizona Biographical Dictionary. Black Mountain Press, Cave Creek, 1983
  • George Crook: General George Crook: His Autobiography, University of Oklahoma Press, 1986, ISBN 0-8061-1982-9
  • Thomas Cruse: Apache Days and After. University of Oklahoma Press, 1987, ISBN 0-80326-327-9
  • Ben T. Traywick: Legendary Characters of Southeast Arizona. Red Marie’s, Tombstone, 1992
  • Peter Cozzens: Eyewitnesses to the Indian Wars, 1865–1890 (The Struggle for Apacheria) Stackpole Books, 2001, ISBN 0-8117-0572-2
  • Charles M. Robinson: General Crook and the Western Frontier, University of Oklahoma Press, 2001, ISBN 0-8061-3358-9
  • Ron Field: US Army Frontier Scouts 1840–1921 Osprey Publishing, 2003, ISBN 1-8417-6582-1
  • David Roberts: Once They Moved Like The Wind: (Cochise, Geronimo, And The Apache Wars), Touchstone, 2005, ISBN 0-6718-8556-1
  • Edwin L. Sabin:General Crook and the Fighting Apaches (1871–1886), Lulu Pr, 2008, ISBN 1-4097-1970-7
  • Charles B. Gatewood: Lt. Charles Gatewood & His Apache Wars Memoir, Bison Books, 2009, ISBN 0-8032-1884-2

External links[]

de:Al Sieber pt:Albert Sieber