University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1874
([1874])

[New York],   pp. [183]-184 PDF (984.1 KB)


Page [183]

 REPORTS 
OF 
SUPERINTENDENTS AND AGENTS OF INDIANS. 
NEW YORK INDIAN AGENCY, 
Forestville, N. Y., October 21, 1874. 
SIR: In submitting my fifth annual report, 1 have the honor to state that
the Indians 
in this agency number 5,140, of whom 1,046 reside oil the Allegany and Cornplanter
reservations, 1,712 on Cattaraugus reservation, 208 on Oneida, 394 on Onondaga,
704 on 
Saint Regis, 660 on Tonawanda, and 416 on Tuscarora reservation. Of these
Indians, 
3,060 are Senecas, 506 Onondagas, 704 Saint Regis, 302 Oneidas, 180 Cayugas,
and 388 
are Tuscaroras. There are on these reservations 1,807 Indian children between
the 
ages of five and twenty-one years. There are thirty Indian schools in the
agency, 
which have been taught on an average of thirty-three weeks during the school-year
ending October 1, 1874. Of the teachers employed in these schools in the
past year 12 
were Indians, who have generally succeeded well. Among them are some successful
and excellent teachers. Several of these teachers received aid from the appropriations
heretofore made for the civilization of Indians, in securing their education,
and in 
special training to become teachers on the reservations. The money so expended
is 
producing good results. 
Of the 1,870 Indian children of school-age, 1,418 have attended school some
portion 
of the year. The average daily attendance during the thirty-three weeks the
schools 
have been taught during the year was 908, being an increase in the daily
attendance 
over the preceding year of 97. An encouraging evidence of the advancement
of 
these people in civilization is found in the increasing interest they take
in the educa- 
tion of their children. Each year marks a decided improvement in the regularity
and 
numbers of these children in attendance at school. 
An institute for the training of teachers of these schools was held on the
Catta- 
raugus reservation during the first week in August last. Thirty-six teachers
attended 
the institute, which was conducted by Prof. R. H. Sanford, president of the
New York 
State Teachers7 Association, and was a success. Lectures were given by Professor
San- 
ford and others to the Indians at different places on the reservation during
the holding 
of the institute, the object being to arouse an increased interest among
the Indians 
in the scLools, and to secure greater regularity in attendance. The institute
must pro- 
duce good results. Especial efforts were made to impress the teachers with
the im- 
portant missionary character of their work, not in the school-room only,
but among the 
Indian people. 
I attended the annual fair of the New York Indians on the Cattaraugus reservation
in the first week of the present month. The fair was conducted by the Iroquois
Agri- 
cultural Society, which is incorporated, all the officers being Indians.
The society has 
erected upon its fair-grounds within the past year a substantial frame building,
30 by 
60 feet, to be used as a hall for the exhibition of grain, vegetables, fruit,
and articles of 
domestic manufacture. The fair was largely attended notwithstanding the weather
was cold and inclement. The display in domestic animals, grain and vegetables
was, 
very creditable. The receipts of the fair, which were mostly paid out in
premiums, 
were about $1,300. 
The crops on these reservations have been better this year than usual, and
I report a 
growing interest among the Indians in agricultural pursuits. I estimate their
wealth 
in individual property, not including farm-buildings, at $381,214. The evidences
of 
their advancement in civilization are unmistakable. Some of the Indians are
becoming 
good mechanics. 
The Indians of the Allegany and Cattaraugus reservations have been considerably
agitated during the past year about legislation by Congress affecting leases
of their 
lands at the village of Salamanca, on the Allegany reservation. This village
is situate 
at the junction of the Erie Railway with the Atlantic and Great Western Railroad;
is 
wholly on the reservation, and numbers ovei! 2,000 inhabitants, who occupy
the lands 
either under leases made by the Seneca Nation of Indians, or under leases
made by in- 
dividual Indians, approved by the council of the Seneca Nation, and most
of them con- 
fiimed by laws of the State of New York. Among the leases first named are
those 


Go up to Top of Page