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William UNFUG Contributed by: Karen Mitchell
William UNFUG came to the United States from Germany when not more than 12
years of age. He had relatives in St. Louis where he spent a few years,
then moved to California and was back in St. Louis as a young man of 18
years. There, on 20 Aug 1870 William enlisted for the Indian Wars. During
the next four years he served in the Indian campaign in Arizona and New
Mexico. In a battle with the Apaches he came into personal combat with the
dreaded Chief Geromino, scrouge of the homesteader. His brush with the
noted Chief was said to be a near capture. He came out of the fray with a
bullet in his leg which he carried the remainder of his life. He was
discharged for disability from the 8th Reg. US Cavalary on 10 Oct 1874 at
Santa Fe, New Mexico.
Following his military service, William went to Cheyenne, Wyoming where he
established a trading post with his brother, Conrad. Later he went to
Oakland, California and operated a grocery business. Other endeavors in
insurance and real estate followed.
In 1904, he was elected National Commander of the Indian Wars Veterans,
headquarters in San Francisco. He worked incessantly the following 30
as Commander to gain pension and other benefits for Indian Wars Veterans.
He was insturtmental in selecting the site for the Yountville Veterans'
Home in the Napa Mountains at Napa, California.