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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1855

[Central superintendency],   pp. 68-118 PDF (20.8 MB)

Page 68

No. 22. 
Sioux AGENCY, September 21, 1855. 
SIR: I have the honor to forward my accustomed annual report. 
Notwithstanding the appearance of the smallpox among the Indians 
here about the time of the last payment, the speedy and general 
application of vaccination prevented the spread of the disease, and the 
usual remedies were successful in preventing much mortality. Prob- 
ably twenty deaths occurred among the Medawakantoan and Wah- 
With this exception the general health of the Indians has been as 
good as their habits of life would warrant us to anticipate. 
Diseases introduced by the whites are producing distressing results. 
Transmitted as they are to their progeny, weak and sickly children, 
unable to withstand disease and the hardships of Indian life, are pro- 
pagated, either to meet an early death or perpetuate a feeble race of 
I would recommend, for obvious reasons, that a small appropriation 
be made to furnish necessary hospital stores for the sick, and for the 
erection of a small building for the accommodation of those suffering 
from infectious diseases, and those whose age and maladies preclude 
the possibility of their being judiciously and successfully treated in 
cold, damp, and ill ventilated lodges, 
I have the honor to be, sir, yours, very respectfully, 
Major R. G. MURPhY, 
United States Indian Agent. 
No. 23. 
Central Superintendency, St. Louis, October 19, 1855. 
SIR: In compliance with your special instructions of the 12th in- 
stant, enjoining upon me, in the absence of Superintendent Cumming, 
to furnish the annual report of the affairs of this superintendency, re-
quired by the regulatious of the department, I have the honor to sub- 
mit the following as such: 
From the reports of the agents lately transmitted, it would appear 
that the condition of the Indians-especially our border tribes-if no 
better, is not worse than it was a year ago; and I incline to the opin- 
ion expressed by many, that a slow, but very perceptible, improve- 
ment is gradually manifesting itself among them. Many of the 
tribes, notwithstanding an adverse season, have raised fair average 
crops, sufficient, it is believed, to save them from want during the 
comine winter and spring. They have generally, too, enjoyed good 
health-during the past year, with the exception of the Kansas Indians, 

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