United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1884
Reports of agents in Indian territory, pp. 70-100 PDF (15.3 MB)
70 REPORTS OF AGENTS IN INDIAN TERRITORY. be the most tempting, and it is with that practice we have had the most trouble in the church. According to my observation there is nothing more demoralizing to the Indian character excepting, perhaps, drunkenness, with which it is usually accom- panied. An Indian knows nothing of horse-racing except as connected with betting or gambling, hence I respectfully recommend that that practice be forbidden on res- ervations, and that the infraction of the rule be included in the list of offense falling under the jurisdiction of the Indian courts. By the way, that "court of Indian offenses" idea is exceedingly timely and wise. What you need to secure good service and satisfactory results is the payment of a reasonable salary, with the promise that the term of service shall continue as long as the incumbent proves capable. I believe in granting a premium to experience and in making term of office in all departments of State commertsurate with the incum- bent's efficient honorable service. Until such is law and such is practice we will not attain to anything like perfection in popular government. Beg pardon for obtruding my humble opinion on this subject. In this connection, I wish to commend your good judgment in recommending that Indians be allowed to make homestead entries without the payment of the usual fees and commissions prescribed by law. At its last session, I believe Congress did amend the law, so that Indians can now take up homesteads without cost, the most gracious bit of legislation that has been ground out for a long time. To the poor Indian with but at few dollars at most at command, struggling against so many odds to get a start and make a living, it will prove a great boon. And then it was unjust to ask him to pay a certain amount of money to secure what he has always considered his own by the right of prior occupation. NEZ PERCIS IN THE INDIAN TERRITORY. In regard to the return of the remnant of Joseph's bands now in the Indian Terri- tory, I rejoice greatly at the success that has crowned the efforts of my brethren in the East; yet I am humiliated when I remember that their zeal was not all accord- ing to knowledge. In recommending the return of all, without distinction, to their mountain home, they refused to recognize the fact that it is difficult for men and women to forgive and to forget such hellish treatment as they were subjected to when their houses were burned, their property destroyed, their husbands and chil- dren murdered and their wives ravished. Now by a wise provision of the Depart- ment, I believe it is, those who were known to have committed such deeds are not to be allowed to return, and so all trouble will probably be avoided. PROPOSED INDUSTRIAL SCHOOL AT KAMIAH. As to the question of reopening and enlarging the Kamiah school under church au- spices, I regard it as another case of zeal not according to knowledge. For all prac- tical purposes the location is too isolated and the expenditure of the same amount of money in assisting a really needy people would be productive of more satisfactory re- sults and at the same time be more in accordance with the spirit of philanthropy. It is natural, of course, that the Kamiah people should desire a school in their midst for their children, but were the matter properly presented to their minds, they would no doubt gladly consent to do without, if the funds necessary for establishing their school should be used in educating Indian children less favored than their own. Yours, with great respect, G. L. DEFFENBAUGH, Mi88ionary. The COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. CHEYENNE AND ARAPAHO AGENCY, INDIAN TERRITORY, Darlington, August 9, 1884. SIR: In compliance with instructions contained in yours of July 1, I have the honor to present this, my first annual report for this agency, but my fifth in the Indian service. I take pleasure in calling your attention to facts and statistics which have been gathered here by arduous labors, and patient and careful consideration of mat- ters of importance since my arrival April 1. It is a far less agreeable though a more important duty to speak of defects which need to be remedied in order that the labor and exertions of the Department may be productive of tbe greatest possible good; and it will be my aim to give you so far as possible a clear understanding of the actual condition of affairs here, our wants, and the remedies to apply to correct the abuses.
As a work of the United States government, this material is in the public domain.| For information on re-use see: http://digital.library.wisc.edu/1711.dl/Copyright