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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1861
([1861])

Extract from the report of the secretary of the Interior in relation to Indian affairs,   pp. [3]-[6] PDF (1.1 MB)


Page [3]

Extract from the report of the Secretary of the Interior in relation to 
Indian affairs. 
Our Indian affairs are in a very unsettled and unsatisfactory con- 
dition. 
The spirit of rebellion against the authority of the government, 
which has precipitated a large number of States into open revolt, 
has been instilled into a portion of the Indian tribes by emissaries 
from the insurrectionary States. 
The large tribes of Cherokees, Chickasaws, and Choctaws, situated 
in the southern superintendency, have suspended all intercourse with 
the agents of the United States. 
..z  The superintendent and agents appointed since the 4th of March 
'last have been unable to reach their posts or to hold any intercourse 
with the tribes under their charge. The superintendent and some, 
if not all, of the agents of the southern superintendency, who were 
in office on the 4th of March, have assumed an attitude of revolt to 
the United States, and have instigated the Indians to acts of hostility.
Some of these, who lately held their offices under the United States, 
now claim to exercise the same authority by virtue of commissions 
from the pretended confederate government. 
Although the Indian Office has not been able to procure definite 
information of the condition of affairs, and of the extent to which 
the Indians have assumed a hostile attitude, enough has been ascer- 
tained to leave no room for doubt that the influences which have been 
exerted upon the Indians have been sufficient to induce a portion of 
them to renounce the authority of the United States and to acknowl- 
edge that of the rebel government. 
It has been currently reported through the press that a portion of 
them have been organized as a military force, and are in arms with 
the rebels; but the department has no official information confirm- 
ing these rumors. 
The hostile attitude assumed by portions of the tribes referred to, 
ilas resulted from their fears, produced by violence and threats of 
emissaries sent among them, and the withdrawal from their vicinity 
of the troops of the United States, whose presence would have 
afforded a guarantee of protection. It is unfortunate that the War 
Department has been unable to send to that region such a body of 
troops as would be adequate to the protection of those tribes, and 
revive their confidence in the ability as well as the will of the United
States to comply with their treaty stipulations.  Cut off from all in- 
tercourse with loyal citizens; surrounded by emissaries from the 
rebels, who represented that the government of the United States 
was destroyed, and who promised that the rebel government would 
assume the obligations of the United States and pay their annuities; 
a ssailed by threats of violence, and seeing around them no evid'ence 


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