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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1893
([1893])

Report as to Seminoles in Florida,   pp. 356-359 PDF (1.8 MB)


Page 356

356 
REPORT AS TO SEMINOLES IN FLORIDA. 
There have been no formal allotments of land made to the Indians on this
reserva- 
tion. The Indians regard the allotting of the land in severalty with favor.
The heads 
of families of the two tribes are occupying separate unallotted tracts on
which they 
have made improvements in the way of building houses, fences, corrals, and
con- 
structing irrigating" ditches. -with a view of having the land allotted
to them in due 
ilme. 
Under the able and creditable management of the Rev. Mr. John Roberts and
Rev. Mr. Sherman Cooledge, of the Protestant Episcopal Church, and the Rev.
Father P. H. Turnell, of the Roman Catholic Church, this work is well attended
to. 
During my tern of office there has been expended for permanent improvements
and repairs at this agency the sum of $80,786.51. Of this amount there was
paid for 
the three new school buildings, including the steam heating apparatus, the
sum of 
$50,015; for the Wind River bridge, $9,100; for the buildings at Arapaho
issue 
station, $5,000; for the agency barn, shed for protection of agricultural
implements, 
and stockade, combined, $2,185.12; for agency slaughterhouse, cattle scale,
and cor- 
rals, $1,457.63. This does not include other improvements made by the agency
force, 
such as con structing 23 bridges and culverts. grading roads, making and
putting up 
275 rods of picket wire fence, erecting farm and smaller gates, and constructing
long lines of lateral ditches for irrigating purposes, and other iiilnor
repairs on 
agency and school buildings, fences, etc., all of which has been done in
a practical 
and workmanlike manner. 
As this is my last annual report, and my successor is already on the ground,
I can 
not be charged with having an "ax to grind," and will here suggest
that if the 
Department will give the agent more support and confidence, which is awarded
such men in other spheres of life, the Indian service will prosper, your
office have 
far less trouble, and the agent will be better enabled to discharge his difficult
and 
trying task, the Indians will be advanced, and the Government will save money.
I take great pleasure in acknowledging the efficiency of all my agency and
school 
employcs. They have given me their cordial support, and a better body of
gentlemen 
and ladies will be difficult to find. And, kindly thanking the present officials
of the 
Indian Office and the Department for courtesies and kindness, I beg the continuance
of them until my accounts are fully and finally settled. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 
JOHN FOSHER, 
United States Indian Agent. 
The COMNItSSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. 
REPORT AS TO SEMINOLES IN FLORIDA. 
FIELD SERVICE, 
Myers, Fla., Agst 11, h193. 
SiR: In compliance with instructions, dated June 15, 1893, 1 have the honor
to 
submit the following report: 
There is no agency proper, or reservation, for the Seminoles in Florida.
A little 
more than two years ago the Women's National Indian Association initiated
its 
pioneer work for the benefit of these people. The Government had been nmaking
annual appropriations for these Indians for some time, but very little was
accom- 
plished, as there was no organized work started, and the funds would simply
revert to 
the United States Treasury at the end of each fiscal year. As the Women's
National 
Indian Association desired to carry out some definite plan of work, they
sought the 
co~peration of the Government, which was readily and liberally granted, and
Special Agent Cutler was authorized to expend the appropriation for that
year 
(1891) in the purchase of a sawmill and necessary implements, stock, etc.,
which 
would be needed as soon as the work could be commenced. 
Location.-The Women's National Indian Association located its mission some
45 miles southeast of Myers, which is our post-office, and from which all
our 
supplies must be hauled, 3 miles from Lake Trafford, and some distance from
the Indian camps. This site was selected because it is comparatively high
ground, 
and not subject to overflow, except in extreme freshets, and so less liable
to dam- 
age such crops as sugar cane, rice, sweet potatoes, etc., which usually yield
in 
abundance here; and it is the plan and hope to draw these Indians from their
swampy camps to this more healthful location, where they can follow agricultural
pursuits, and stock-raising, when they can be induced to settle here, and
yet not 
lose entirely the benefit of the hunting and fishing grounds. 
Land.-The association owns 320 acres of land, and hopes to secure more, most
of 
which will be divided into small tracts for homes for the Indians as fast
as they 
desire it. Adjoining this tract the Government secured 80 acres of land upon


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