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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1851

[Report in relation to Menomonies],   pp. 29-39 PDF (4.7 MB)

Page 29

sity of avoiding Indian wars, if possible. Humanity calls loudly for some
interposition oi the part of the American Government to save, if possible,
some portion of these ill-fated tribes; and this, it is thought, can only
done by furnishing them with the means, and gradually turning their atten-
tion to agricultural pursuits. Without some aid from the Government, it 
will be impossible for them to make an attempt even as graziers. Fifty 
years, it was thought, would be time sufficient to give the experiment a
trial, and solve the great problem, whether or not an Indian can be made
a civilized man. The laying off of the country into geographical or rather
national domains, I regard as a very important measure, inasmuch as it will
take away a great cause of quarrel among themselves, and at the same time
enable the Government to ascertain who are the depredators, should depre-
dations hereafter be committed. The accompanying map, upon which 
these national boundaries are clearly marked and defined, was made in the
presence of the Indians, and fully approved and sanctioned by all. As a 
map of reference, it will be of great service to the Department. 
Viewing the treaty in all its provisions, I am clearly of opinion that it
the best that could have been made for both parties. I am moreover of 
the opinion that it will be observed and carried out in as good faith on
the part of the Indians, as it will on the part of the United States and
white people thereof. There was an earnest solemnity, and a deep con- 
viction of the necessity'of adopting some such measures, evident in the con-
duct and nmanners of the Indians throughout the whole council. On leav- 
ing for their respective homes, and bidding each other adieu, they gave the
strongest possible evidence of their friendly intentions for the future,
and the 
mutual confidence and good faith which they had in each other. Invita- 
tions were freely given, and as freely accepted, by each of the tribes to
change visits, talk and smoke together like brothers, upon ground where 
they had never before met but for the purpose of scalping each other. This,
to my mind, was conclusive evidence of the sincerity of the Indians, and
nothing but bad management, or some untoward misfortune, can ever break 
it.                  Respectfully, your obed't serv't, 
Superintendent Indian Afairs. 
Office Indian Aft'airs, April 23, 1851. 
Hon. A. H. H. STUART, 
Secretary of Interior. 
SIR: I have had the honor to receive a communication addressed to you, 
signed "R. W. Thompson, attorney for the Menomonie nation," dated
11th October last, and referred by you to this office for examination and
The communication of Mr. Thompson I find to ,4  akelaborate and 
able argument, the object of which is to stablish, according to the rules
law applicable to the facts of the case, tht following positions: 
First. That the treaty with the Menomonie Indians of 1Sth October, 

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