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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1884
([1884])

Reports of agents in Indian territory,   pp. 70-100 PDF (15.3 MB)


Page 70

70      REPORTS OF AGENTS IN INDIAN TERRITORY. 
be the most tempting, and it is with that practice we have had the most trouble
in 
the church. According to my observation there is nothing more demoralizing
to the 
Indian character excepting, perhaps, drunkenness, with which it is usually
accom- 
panied. An Indian knows nothing of horse-racing except as connected with
betting 
or gambling, hence I respectfully recommend that that practice be forbidden
on res- 
ervations, and that the infraction of the rule be included in the list of
offense falling 
under the jurisdiction of the Indian courts. 
By the way, that "court of Indian offenses" idea is exceedingly
timely and wise. 
What you need to secure good service and satisfactory results is the payment
of a 
reasonable salary, with the promise that the term of service shall continue
as long as 
the incumbent proves capable. I believe in granting a premium to experience
and 
in making term of office in all departments of State commertsurate with the
incum- 
bent's efficient honorable service. Until such is law and such is practice
we will not 
attain to anything like perfection in popular government. Beg pardon for
obtruding 
my humble opinion on this subject. 
In this connection, I wish to commend your good judgment in recommending
that 
Indians be allowed to make homestead entries without the payment of the usual
fees 
and commissions prescribed by law. At its last session, I believe Congress
did 
amend the law, so that Indians can now take up homesteads without cost, the
most 
gracious bit of legislation that has been ground out for a long time. To
the poor 
Indian with but at few dollars at most at command, struggling against so
many odds 
to get a start and make a living, it will prove a great boon. And then it
was unjust 
to ask him to pay a certain amount of money to secure what he has always
considered 
his own by the right of prior occupation. 
NEZ PERCIS IN THE INDIAN TERRITORY. 
In regard to the return of the remnant of Joseph's bands now in the Indian
Terri- 
tory, I rejoice greatly at the success that has crowned the efforts of my
brethren in 
the East; yet I am humiliated when I remember that their zeal was not all
accord- 
ing to knowledge. In recommending the return of all, without distinction,
to their 
mountain home, they refused to recognize the fact that it is difficult for
men and 
women to forgive and to forget such hellish treatment as they were subjected
to 
when their houses were burned, their property destroyed, their husbands and
chil- 
dren murdered and their wives ravished. Now by a wise provision of the Depart-
ment, I believe it is, those who were known to have committed such deeds
are not 
to be allowed to return, and so all trouble will probably be avoided. 
PROPOSED INDUSTRIAL SCHOOL AT KAMIAH. 
As to the question of reopening and enlarging the Kamiah school under church
au- 
spices, I regard it as another case of zeal not according to knowledge. For
all prac- 
tical purposes the location is too isolated and the expenditure of the same
amount of 
money in assisting a really needy people would be productive of more satisfactory
re- 
sults and at the same time be more in accordance with the spirit of philanthropy.
It 
is natural, of course, that the Kamiah people should desire a school in their
midst for 
their children, but were the matter properly presented to their minds, they
would no 
doubt gladly consent to do without, if the funds necessary for establishing
their school 
should be used in educating Indian children less favored than their own.
Yours, with great respect, 
G. L. DEFFENBAUGH, 
Mi88ionary. 
The COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. 
CHEYENNE AND ARAPAHO AGENCY, INDIAN TERRITORY, 
Darlington, August 9, 1884. 
SIR: In compliance with instructions contained in yours of July 1, I have
the honor 
to present this, my first annual report for this agency, but my fifth in
the Indian 
service. I take pleasure in calling your attention to facts and statistics
which have 
been gathered here by arduous labors, and patient and careful consideration
of mat- 
ters of importance since my arrival April 1. It is a far less agreeable though
a more 
important duty to speak of defects which need to be remedied in order that
the labor 
and exertions of the Department may be productive of tbe greatest possible
good; 
and it will be my aim to give you so far as possible a clear understanding
of the 
actual condition of affairs here, our wants, and the remedies to apply to
correct the 
abuses. 


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