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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1875

Reports of agent in North Carolina,   pp. 343-344 PDF (955.0 KB)

Page 343

REPORTS OF AGENTS IN. NORTH             CAROLINA.            343 
October 22, 1875. 
SIR: In compliance with instructions embraced in circular from your Office,
I herewith 
submit the following report of the Western Shoshone Indians for the year
The Western Shoshone Indians under my charge have improved in civilized habits
the past year, and have received little or no assistance from the Government.
They are gen- 
erally inclined to be industrious, but are a low, degraded race, and some
are very indolent. 
They are all peaceably inclined, and quite a number are engaged in farming
for themselves, 
and a great many support themselves by working for the white people. Those
that are 
farming have raised grain and vegetables enough for their support during
the winter. They 
have no reservation, and are scattered over a large tract of country. Some
of the Indians who 
are engaged in farming, are compelled to rent land from the whites, nearly
all the tillable 
land being claimed by the white settlers. More of the Indians would engage
in farming if 
they bad the land. There has been considerable sickness among them, several
deaths oc- 
curring during the past year. 
I would respectfully suggest that a suitable reservation be set apart for
the Shoshones of 
Nevada as soon as practicable. The whites are rapidly settling up the country,
and in 
many cases the Indians are compelled to give up their little farms. The game
is being driven 
out, and in a short time there will be no place suitable for a reservation,
and the Indians will 
have nothing to subsist upon. 
A difficulty occurred in September last, in which an unruly Indian killed
a white man, 
and four peaceable Indians were subsequently killed b/ the whites, The Indian
that killed 
the white man was captured and turned over to a military officer, from whom
he was taken 
and hanged by a mob.  For a time great excitement prevailed, but the trouble
was settled 
before any serious damage was done. My report for September gives full particulars
the affair. The Indians in the vicinity of the trouble were driven from their
homes and 
rendered destitute. 
They express an anxiety to be taken to a reservation suitable for them, that
they might be 
assisted in case of necessity, and be able to support themselves without
fear of being molested. 
If a reservation be established, and one Indian from each band be allowed
to visit the same and 
return and report, I think the'result would be good. In this way the Indians
could be peace- 
ably induced to congregate at one place where they could be assisted and
protected. As they 
are, many of them die for the want of a little care. No effort has been made
to educate these In- 
dians. They are all peaceably inclined and willing to do right.  Great improvement
be made in their civilized habits if properly attended to. 
I am, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 
Farmer in Charge of Western Shoshones. 
Hon. E. P. SMITH, 
Commissioner Indian Affairs, Washington, D. C. 
Webster, Jackson County, N. C., October 25, 1875. 
SIR: I have the honor to submit the first annual report of this agency. 
The beginning of my work here in June last found these Indians in a condition
of extreme 
,destitution. They had been for years without an agent or any Government
care. They 
had received no annuities since 1869. They were heavily in debt for their
lands, which 
had been sold under judgment, and, until the termination of the suits, prosecuted
for them 
by the Government in 1874, had lived in constant dread and expectation of
losing their 
homes and being driven west. Oppressed by all these discouragements, they
had lost heart 
and become exceedingly idle and improvident. They were almost entirely destitute
of stock 
and farming-implements ; absolute beggary stared them in the face. As regards
facilities, they were almost equally destitute. They have had for years no
school among them 
worthy of the name. With the exception of a few half-breeds, none could read
or write 
English. Very few full-bloods Could speak it. One fact speaks well for them,
nearly all 
.can read and write the Cherokee language, the parents teaching the children.
This con- 
tributes little to their intelligence, however, since they have no literature.
Living, as they do, on lands naturally fertile, surrounded by a white agricultural
tion, long since compelled by the failure of the chase to depend upon agriculture
for sub- 
sistence, wearing the citizens' dress, and adopting many of the habits of
civilized life, it 
might naturally have been expected that they would ere now have become a
people, and previous to the late civil -war they were prospering to a certaiin
extent. But the 
war, which paralyzed the energies and exhausted the resources of this, in
common with other 
sections of the South, was peculiarly destructive to them. Agriculture almost

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