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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1905, Part I
([1905])

Reports concerning Indians in Nevada,   pp. 254-260 PDF (3.5 MB)


Page 255

REPORTS CONCERNING INDIANS IN NEVADA. 
our farm very greatly. We have also an appropriation for a pumping plant,
which, if successfully installed, will enable us to extend our farm work.
The erection of a hospital and the furnishing of a nurse for the next year
will 
be a great improvement, as we have had poor accommodations for the sick in
the past. 
In general, we are gratified with our experiment in the outing work, not
only 
with the benefit to the pupils, but in the education of the white people
who are 
disposed to say that they are "just Injuns. anyway," but who seem
to be learn- 
ing that they may be as ladylike, as useful, and apt as anyone else. 
We have had through the year several cases of serious illness, mostly pneu-
monia, five proving fatal. 
Our band, under the direction of Disciplinarian Oliver, has made good 
progress and is playing well. They have attracted very favorable comment
where they have played at public gatherings. We have some further engage-
ments for them that will be an incentive for the boys to keep up their band
practice. 
Walker River Reservation.-To note the progress of a people in twelve 
months is somewhat like watching the growth of an oak tree. We know in the
course of time that it grows, but to say just how much in a short period
is 
difficult. We hope these Indians have not gone back any. They have done 
their usual amount of farming, and a few have constructed sonie new ditches
and opened some new land. There are no allotments on this reservation, 
though it seems to be the intent to allot the land at an early date. When
it is 
allotted, it is probable that all the agricultural land will be reserved
for the 
Indians, as it certainly should be, for to leave any of it open to entry
would in- 
crease the fight for water, of which there is an inadequate supply. Their
irri- 
gation system should be extended to cover about twice as much land as is
covered at present in order to use more of the water early in the season
and 
during good years. A survey looking to such extension will be made in a short
time. A great deal of interest is being shown in the opening of this reservation,
but the interest is in the mountains, which are supposed to contain minerals,
rather than in the agricultural lands. 
A day school is maintained upon the reservation, at which all eligible chil-
dren attend. Very good work has been done in the schoolroom and in the little
industrial training that they can give. 
The Methodist Episcopal Church has a missionary among these people, and 
the missionary, Rev. R. G. Pike, holds services at the schoolhouse about
once a 
month. They have recently shipped a church building to the reservation, and
when this is erected they will have better accommodations. Reverend Pike
is 
a faithful, earnest worker and is doing good work among the Indians. 
Marriages among the Indians have been by declaration before witnesses, as
provided by office regulations. The code of morals is not high, and domestic
trouble arising from infidelity is very common. 
There is no court of Indian offenses. Matters requiring adjustment are 
brought before the farmer, who is sometimes assisted by some of the head
men. 
We hope to encourage the Indians to try fishing some in Walker Lake. There
is said to be plenty of fish in the lake, and the mining camps south of the
reservation would afford an excellent market for any fish. they might have
for 
sale. . There seems a possibility of doing a very nice business in this line
if the 
Indiana will take hold of it. 
There is considerable trouble about the Indians getting whisky at places
off 
the reservation, but it is quite difficult to secure evidence against the
parties 
who furnish it to them. If possible, the opium habit is worse than the liquor,
as it not only disqualifies them at the time, but ruins them permanently
and 
more hopelessly than the liquor. Legislation should be enacted covering the
disposition of opium to Indians, and making it a very grave offense. 
Day schools.-The day schools of Bishop, Big Pine, and -Independence, Cal.,
have had about their usual attendance, and have done very satisfactory work.
At Bishop the positions of field matron and housekeeper have been allowed,
in 
addition to that of teacher. With this arrangement we hope to do more variety
of work and to maintain more regular attendance than has been possible with
the one teacher. We have a good prospect of getting new school buildings
at Big 
Pine and Independence, where school has been held in very poor shacks, utterly
unfit for the purpose. 
At Independence a very desirable school site of 2 acres has recently been
secured. 
255 


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