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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1873
([1873])

[Colorado River agency],   pp. 284-285 PDF (981.4 KB)


Page 284

284       REPORT     OF COMMISSIONER       OF INDIAN    AFFAIRS. 
These Indians have always been celebrated for virtue, industry, and integrity,
and 
juo doubt their good conduct is, to a great extent, due to the labors of
the Catholic 
fathers who built a mission for their instruction at San Xavier del Bac,
over a century 
ago. Through the hostility of other Indians. and internal strifes aniong
the people of 
Mexico, the mission has for many years been going to decay: but the Papagos
still 
,linger around it, fondly cherishing the memory of the past, and adhering
to a great 
extent to the precepts that were taught them. 
I have received $2,500 to be devoted to educational purposes, and with this
sum I have 
erected a school-house. The building is over one hundred feet long, surrounded
by a 
good wall, and is conveniently divided into rooms for the accommodation of
classes and 
teachers, and is in every way admirably arranged for the comfort and convenience
of 
both pupils and teachers. 
I have engaged two Sisters from Saint Joseph's Academy to teach the school.
This 
selection gives great satisfaction to the Indians, and it being with the
sisters a labor 
of love, I have great hopes that the school will be the means of promoting
much good. 
I believe it to be highly necessary to teach some of the boys mechanical
trades, and 
a number have expressed a strong desire to have their boys so instructed.
I have 
noticed that many display considerable ingenuity in the use of tools.  It
is neces- 
sary for them to have a considerable amount of mechanical work done, such
as making 
and repairing plows, carts, &c., and as they progress their necessity
will increase. I 
would, therefore, recommend the building of a blacksmith and wagon shop,
and the 
employment of two good mechanics to perform the work for the agency, and
to teach 
such of the boys trades as desire to learn and show a faculty for'it; by
this means in 
two or three years they could do their own mechanical labor; besides, it
would serve to 
stimulate them to a higher order of civilization. 
Their agricultural pursuits have been fairly rewarded this year; the yield
has been@ 
very satisfactory, and they have cultivated, in addition to the old lands
that they have 
so long used, a considerable portion of new land. This, in connection with
many 
natural products they gather, and the proceeds of labor they perform for
others, wilt 
be sufficient for all their wants and afford them the means of living more
comfortably 
than at any period for years before. 
In accordance with instructions from the Department, I have ordered a map
made, 
which will soon be completed, of that portion of country which they desire
set apart 
for a reservation, and I would most earnestly recommend that either this
or some other 
locality suitable to their wants be set apart for them, so that they may,
without 
molestation, enjoy and have security in their homes. 
The health of the Indians during the past year has been good, and at no period
since 
the acquisition of the Territory by the United States have they appeared
so contented 
and happy. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 
R. A. WILBUR, 
United States Indian Agent. 
Hon. COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. 
56. 
COLORADO ]RIVER RESERVATION, 
Parker, Ariz. Ter., August 30, 1873. 
SIR: I have the honor to submit the following as my annual report for the
year end- 
ing this date: 
Since my last annual report the Hualpais have been placed under my charge.
This 
people range through the country north and east of the Mojaves. Their strength
has 
been variously estimated at from 1,200 to 1,600, but the number fed at Camp
Beales 
Springs, where they have been collected during the year past, has not averaged
more 
than 600. It is my intention to remove them to this reservation in October
next, 
where they can be fed with less expense to the Government. 
The Chimehuevis and Yumas, who have never been on this reservation, will
also be 
removed hither, as soon as the irrigating canal is finished, which will probably
be dur- 
ing the coming winter. 
Continual trouble is being experienced by the squatting of Mexicans near
the bound- 
ary-line of the reservation, who tamper with the Indians, and attempt to
introduce 
liquor among them. The only remedy I can suggest is to extend the reserve
to the 
south to take in the abandoned town of La Paz, and to the east to include
in its limits 
all the bottom-land between the river and the edge of the mesa. The proposed
in- 
crease would take in all the land which has any value, and would inclose
the reserva- 
tion within natural boundaries. By this extension no rights would be interfered
with, 
as no claims are recorded; consequently no difficulty will result from taking
in this 
land. 


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