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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1904, Part I
([1904])

Reports concerning Indians in Arizona,   pp. 131-155 PDF (12.5 MB)


Page 133

REPORTS CONCERNING         INDIANS IN     ARIZONA.          133 
and 250 feet above the pump at the river. This gives ample pressure for fire
protec- 
tion for both agency and school buildings, and the reservoir is large enough
so that 
when it is full of water there is enough to give each of the 150 children
50 gallons a 
day for ten days; but to keep the water good the, reservoir is usually filled
twice a 
week-the surplus water being used for irrigation, for the school stock, and
for 
agency use. 
The school garden.-Several acres of very good land have been added to the
garden, 
so that now it comprises about 20 acres, and it is in fine condition. This
part of the 
industrial training is under the direct supervision of the industrial teacher,
and to 
him the success is mainly due. The school garden is in White River Canyon
about 
half a mile from the school buildings. This condition makes the work of the
indus- 
trial teacher arduous, for he must also serve as the disciplinarian, and
it is impossible 
to attend both these places satisfactorily to himself or to any other. The
soil and 
climate seem to be adapted to the raising of the following: Sweet corn, pumpkins,
squashes, potatoes, cabbage, turnips, radishes, onions, lettuce, melons,
beets, cauli- 
flower, celery, beans, and chili. It is not well suited to the raising of
sweet potatoes, 
tomatoes, and beans on account of flies and bugs that destroy or damage the
stalks 
and vines. It has been ascertained that seeds of the early varieties only
should be 
planted, for the seasons are so short that the fruit will not mature. 
The Indian medicine man.-The Indian medicine man is a menace to civilization
or 
training in any useful industry. He is usually the shrewdest or most cunning
Indian 
of the tribe. He teaches that the school will transform the Indian into some
other 
nationality; that their children when they become trained by white people
will not 
have any respect for their parents. The worst phase of this wild Indian teaching
is 
in the evil predictions; and their people do not seem to lose faith in them
because of 
their many failures, for a reason for the failure is usually given that satisfies
the other 
Indians. The other Indians are afraid to testify against these medicine men,
fearing 
that sickness and death would be the penalty for such testimony. The superintendent
or bonded officer should be authorized to send these Indian agitators away
to live 
with some tribe where they would have none of this bad influence, when, in
his 
judgment, such action is necessary for the good government of the Indians
for whom 
he is charged in management. The failure to raise a fair crop of corn this
year by 
the Indians that live in the valley of the East Fork of White River may be
properly 
charged mainly to the influence of the medicine men. Their medicine consists
of 
prediction, incantation, or songs. When they are brought before the court
for dis- 
turbance they meet the charge by saying that they are praying to God. The
principal 
objection to these prayers is that there is no work in them, and it is evident
that 
these leaders know that they are wrong, or they would not try to steal away
and 
have their congregations in the deep canyons or in the mountains where I
am not 
supposed to be a witness. 
The Indian police.-There is some manifested improvement in the conduct of
the 
police force, and, under the circumstances, they do very well; but they are
Indians 
having the inclinations, habits, and superstition of the tribe. They are
not usually 
efficient when sent to arrest offenders of the law when such offense is stealing,
drink- 
ing, and the usual practices of the Indian doctor. The tribe naturally has
their 
sympathy, and because of this feeling the police sometimes protect the wrongdoer.
Another cause of inefficiency is the want of ponies to use. They have the
ponies, 
but when needed they are usually miles away in the mountains hunting for
feed 
that should have been provided. This year the policeman will be required
to pro- 
vide hay for his pony. 
On account of the insufficiency of the salary I have had a large number of
resig- 
nations from the police force. If they were furnished a hay forage during
the 
monthsof December, January, February, and March it would be a means of having
better service from them. 
Forest fires.-This year the Territory has had its greatest drought, and the
forest 
part of it has had great fires that swept the grass cleaner than any grazing
could have 
done. Not only the forest part of this reservation but the most of the Mogollon
range of mountains had great fires that destroyed the grass and some of the
resinous 
timber. However, the loss of timber was not very great except in places where
the 
trees were close together or where the grass had not been eaten by the stock.
At first, 
efforts were made to try to make it appear that Indians were responsible
for the fires, 
but when it was found that there were as many fires off the reservation as
on it the 
accusations silenced. It is my opinion that the most of these fires originated
from 
matches and cigarette stubs in the hands of careless cowboys, soldiers, and
Indians, or 
from their campfires; and some from lightning. When it is stated that as
much as 
75,000 acres were burned over on this reservation it would appear that a
great deal 
of valuable timber had been ruined. This, however, is not the fact, except
where the 
-...m 


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