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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1905, Part I

Report concerning Indians in Wyoming,   pp. 380-384 PDF (2.1 MB)

Page 380

WITTENBERG, Wis., October 23, 1905. 
Inasmuch as I did not take charge here till July 15, last, I shall not be
to report fully on what was accomplished at the school last year. 
School.-The facilities for school work have been greatly improved during
the past year. A school building, a boys' dormitory, with modern improve-
ments, and a pump house, all of brick, have been erected, also a neat frame
office building. Three wells have been drilled near the pump house, which
furnish water of very excellent quality, though the flow is so limited that
is necessary to run the pump longer than is convenient in order to have the
quantity of water required. The pumping is done by a triplex pump, run by
10-horsepower electric motor. The current for running the motor and for 
lighting the school plant is furnished by a company in the village of Witten-
berg. A large, well-constructed tank affords abundant storage capacity for
The chief needs of the school at present are a new steam laundry and a 
dining room and kitchen. The present laundry is a poorly equipped hand 
laundry, and the kitchen and dining room are too small. A warehouse and 
numerous repairs are also needed, but both the warehouse and the repairs
now been authorized. 
While the plant is not all that might be desired and our authority over the
old Indians is not such that we can always make them do what they ought,
nevertheless the outlook for the present is, on the whole, encouraging. 
Indians.-These Indians, now about 1,312 in number, form a class in them-
selves. They are the part of the Winnebago tribe who refused to remain in
Nebraska when they were placed on the Winnebago Reservation in that State.
They are scattered over this State as indicated in previous reports, perhaps
half of them have homesteads, mostly of little value, and the iemainder hjve
practically nothing. Those who have the homesteads make practically / no
use of them. It is reported, I think truthfully, that some Indians do not
where their homesteads are; they proved up on them under compulsion and 
then paid no further attention to them. 
The majority of these people eke out a bare existence by means of berry 
picking, potato digging, and an occasional day's work, in addition to the
annual payment of annuity, which amounts to about $20. A small minority 
appear to be thrifty. Drinking consumes most of their money. Since the 
decision of the Supreme Court has given them the right to buy liquor when
where they please, drunkenness is unrestrained among them. 
Only one legal marriage has been reported the last year. It is no uncommon
thing for a man to change wives or a woman to change husbands annually or
oftener, and thus far nobody has seen fit to invoke the penalty of the law.
The younger men and women, including many of those who have had the 
advantage of training in the Government schools are worse in this respect
the older Indians. 
Many of the old and helpless Indians suffer from hunger and cold every 
winter. Some of these are so feeble as to be unable to take care of themselves,
and some of them are blind. The counties in which they live take the stand
that they are wards of the Government, and that they are not proper charges
on the county. The Government does not help them for the reason that they
are citizens. This makes their lot hard. 
Faithful work has been done by the additional farmers and field matrons,
but results have been small in proportion to the effort expended. 
S. A. M. YOUNG, 
Superintendent and Special Disbursing Agent. 
SHONI AGENCY, Wyo., August 15, 1905. 
During the past twelve months more change has taken place in all directions
on this reservation than in any previous year since the reservation was estab-
lished. The irrigation system planned and laid out by the Department, under

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