The Long Knives
An army patrol scours the dry and dusty but spectacular canyon country in search of Indians, who refer to the cavalrymen as “Long Knives” for the sabers they carry. Although the men on these exhausting patrols rarely found Indians, they did learn the lay of the land and their geographic discoveries helped to create some of the first maps of the Southwest.
“The Long Knives” is not artist Frank McCarthy’s first depiction of the tireless patrolmen of the Southwest. In “Scouting the Long Knives,” he painted an Apache scout hiding behind a sandstone boulder as he watched a column of the horsemen pass. Frank McCarthy’s gift was his talent for creating compelling and dramatic paintings, but his talent was his determination to share both sides of a story.