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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1892

Report of agent in Colorado,   pp. 231-232 PDF (1.1 MB)

Page 232

232              REPORT OF AGENT IN COLORADO. 
ever before, and more pasture land preserved from the untimely encroachments
of stock. 
Education.-It is a source of gratification to me that my suggestion regarding
the suitableness of the abandoned military post at Fort Lewis for school
was followed up and that a flourishing school is now in operation at that
Sixteen children of the Southern Utes were secured for the school by Supervisor
Keck during his visit last spring. All the assistance which could be was
given by myself and the agency employes. I have reason to think that more
might have been obtained but for the meddling of certain persons not connected
with the service. No favorable opportunity is lost by myself or the employes
speak a good word for the school, explain the benefits of education, and
age the Indians to permit their children to attend. 
Missionary work.-I can not learn that any missionary work has ever been at-
tempted among these Indians. During the past year representatives of differ-
ent churches have looked over the ground with a view to the establishment
of a 
mission, but so far as I know nothing definite has been decided upon. There
room for much good work in this direction. 
Courts.-No courts of Indian offenses have been established. Disputes between
the Indians which would call for its action are very rare and it has not
deemed best to encourage them. Such a court will no doubt be found useful
should be provided on the allotment of lands in severalty, but probably not
Road work.-As the use of vehicles by Indians increases, the necessity for
struction and repairs of roads begins to be apparent to them, and considerable
labor has been expended by them in the way of grading and smoothing rough
places and in temporary bridges over irrigating ditches, etc., but no general
work in the way of establishing permanent roads has been attempted. 
Industries.-The Southern Utes appear to be most naturally attracted to stock-
raising as a pursuit, and nearly all own horses. Many have flocks of sheep
goats which furnish them some meat, while the pelts and skins not needed
in their 
domestic economy are sold. Of their wool they manufacture almost nothing-
differing in this respect greatly from some other tribes, their neighbors,
the Na- 
vajos in particular-but it is carefully sheared and sold. 
Some few of them have become possessed of small herds of cattle, and within
the past year a number of the best farmers and those most able and willing
care for them in winter at home, have had issued to them. individually, a
each of the stock cattle purchased some years since for the tribe. A portion
the men devote considerable time to the pursuit of wild game. 
The favorite occupation of the women is working in beads, with which they
ornament purses, moccasins, and articles of personal adornment. Much of this
work is purchased by tourists and others. Other arts and trades are almost
known to them. 
Allotments.-The idea of receiving land in severalty does not favorably impress
the great majority of the tribe. The arrangement made between them and the
commission of 1888 for their removal to Utah, subject to the approval of
gress, they still consider unsettled, and are very much inclined to the opinion
that they are unjustly dealt with. While this impression prevails among them
and until they can be convinced that they are to remain here permanently
will oppose the plan. The same cause has a strong tendency to diszourage
tribe in general from engaging in agricultural pursuits, and stands in the
of real and permanent progress. 
Sanitary.-The sanitary condition of the tribe is fairly good; no epidemic
has prevailed among them. A slight increase in venereal disease is reported.
This may be accounted for by their proximity to Mexican neighbors, among
whom are included many women of easy virtue. 
Improvements.-The agency buildings, though some of them are old, are for
most part in a good state of preservation, but need painting. It is the intention
to proceed with this work in thenear future. A new slaughterhouse was erected
during the past spring and is found to be a great convenience, as by means
of it 
the beef is allowed to properly cool before being hauled to the issue house
The change from yearly to weekly delivery of beef cattle by the contractor
resulted in great benefit. The quality of the beef furnished is now uniformly
good in winter as well as in summer, and there is no chance for loss by shrink-
age from exposure and starvation, as under the old system. 
Very respectfully, 
United States Indian Agent. 

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