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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1863

Southern superintendency,   pp. 173-233 PDF (26.1 MB)

Page 173

No. 81J. 
Leavenworth, Kansas, September 24, 1863. 
SIR: I have the honor herewith to transmit my annual report for the year
ending September 30, 1863. This, as well as the reports of the agents, will
exhibit in detail the condition and prospects of the various Indian tribe3
in the 
southern superintendency. 
The Osage Indians are remaining loyal to the government, with the excep-
tion of Black Dog's band, and same of the half-breeds and restless spirits
other bands, who were influenced to join the rebels by misrepresentation
to them by their former agent, Major Dorn, and other emissaries sent amongst
them by the rebels. In view of the very important geographical position occu-
pied by those Indians between the white settlements in southern Kansas and
those'within the rebel States, no effort on my part has been spared to coun-
teract the machinations of the enemy, and to hold them in loyalty to the
States government, in which I have-been ably assisted by Father Shoemaker
and his associates at the Osage Catholic mission. 
The great protection which the Osages have rendered to the southern frontier
for the last eighteen months is ample proof to indicate the value of this
tion. Last spring they utterly destroyed a baud of nineteen rebel officers,
according to the instructions and other papers found upon their persons,
fully commissioned and authorized by the rebel leaders to proceed to enrol
organize the rebels in Colorado and Dakota Territories. 
These officers were passing through the Osage reservation, and were met by
the Osages near the Verdigris river. Having' previously instructed-the Osages
to disarm and arrest all roving bands, vagabonds, and thieves that might
be en- 
countered by" thrum on their reserve, they very promptly demanded their
and also to accompany them to the military camp at Humboldt. This, of course,
the rebels declined to do; on the contrary; they shot two of the Osages;
upon the latter, as they said, killed every one of them in return. Major
in command at Humboldt at that time, immediately on the receipt of the above
statement, went out scouting with a portion of his command, and actually
seventeen of those rebels shot, tomahawked, scalped, and decapitated: 
Had this party of rebels reached the wild tribes of Indians on the plains,
restless and warlike as they are, and organized and led them, a vast amount
damage would have resulted to the emigration and supply trains destined for
military posts in New Mexico, Colorado, and Dakota, and might have cost the
government millions of dollars to have them crushed out. So important was
this service deemed by me that I immediately called the entire Osage nation
grand council at Convill's trading post to thank them, in behalf of their
Father, for so valuable services rendered; and as a compensation thereof,
I dis- 
tributed among them a number of presents,. consisting of clothing, shoes,
other goods, which was highly appreciAted by them, and very encouraging in-
deed. On the fourth day of July last I again called them together, and invited
them to participate in a grand celebration at Humboldt, to which they responded
to the number of about 2,000. I need scarcely say that the friendship thus
sh6wn, and the presents made them in these two councils, put them in high
and good humor; and it is believed has very materially aided to make with
the late very favorable treaty, in which they cede to the United States over
million acres of land for settlement by whites, and to colonize upon such
of Indians as, agreeable to a late act of Congress, are to be moVed from
to Nebraska. It is said that a large portion of these lands are among the
most valuable west of the Mississippi.t The Osages have never been subsisted
as refugees, although those located in the southern portions of their reserve

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