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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 Oklahoma,   pp. 291-323 PDF (15.9 MB)


Page 317

REPORTS CONCERNING INDIANS IN OKLAHOMA. 
317 
Tonkawa. 
All ages (males, 24; females, 30)-                     54 
Males over 18 years--                      -           17 
Females over 14 years----------------------------     22 
Children 6 to 16 years, inclusive-------------------------6 
Number of families ...---                    -    --   114 
Agriculture.-The land belonging to the Ponca and Tonkawa tribes is situ-
ated in Kay and Noble counties, is fertile and well adapted for agricultural
and 
dairy purposes. Of the 121 Ponca families, 66 are living upon and cultivating
portions of their allotments aggregating 1,224 acres, from which they have
raised, according to a careful estimate, 1,000 bushels of wheat, 3,000 bushels
of 
oats, 32,500 bushels of corn, 150 bushels of potatoes, and a quantity of
garden 
vegetables. Twenty-nine families are residing upon but not cultivating their
own allotments, and 26 families are living off their allotments with their
friends. 
The present leasing system is largely responsible for the meager amount of
land 
cultivated by the Ponca themselves. 
Allotments and inherited lands.-In 1894, 628 Ponca received allotments, aggre-
gating 75,249.37 acres; of these allottees, 122 have since died, leaving
26,493.87 
acres., termed inherited Indian land, subject to sale by the heirs under
the act of 
Congress approved May 27, 1902, and the regulations of the Secretary of the
Interior. To date 12,638.72 acres of this land have been sold, bringing to
the 
heirs $255,902.47, an average of more than $20 per acre. 
Of this large amount of money received less than $20,000 has been judiciously
expended in the placing of permanent improvements upon their allotments and
for the purchase of teams and implements; $33,000 is on deposit in the United
States depository at Winfield, Kans.; $55,879 were paid to legal guardians
of 
minor heirs, and the balance of nearly $150,000 has been practically wasted
in 
gifts, gambling, and intemperance. The present indebtedness of the Ponca
to 
merchants and others amounts to nearly $100,000. 
Since October, 1904, the money derived from the sale of the inherited lands
has been placed on deposit in the banks, subject to check by the heirs only
after 
having the approval of the superintendent and the Commissioner of Indian
Affairs. This restriction, together with the reluctance on the part of the
office 
in the allowance of payment of Indian accounts, has practically ruined the
credit 
of the Ponca, which, by the way, is a very desirable accomplishment. How-
ever, the doling out of $10 per month to the heirs relieves them from any
abso- 
lute necessity for labor, and the teams and implements purchased by this
money 
are soon mortgaged and disposed of for practically a song and the money ob-
tained thereby squandered; so, after all, this regulation serves merely to
pro- 
long the process of the separation of the Ponca and his money, thereby delaying
the time when absolute necessity shall stare him in the face, when his wants
will be provided by the labor of his hands; not until this time comes will
he 
ever amount to much. 
One hundred and fifty-six new allotments, aggregating 18,491.38 acres, have
just been made to the children born since the last allotment was completed.
This work has been in charge of Mr. George A. Keepers, special allotting
agent. 
and has been accomplished in a most satisfactory maDner. The remainder of
the tribal lands will probably soon be allotted equally among the allottees
living 
on the 30th of June, 1904. No children born since that date will receive
any 
allotment. 
Education.-Seventy-two per cent of the Ponca between the ages of 6 and 51
years can read and write; 76 per cent of these can use English enough for
ordinary intercourse. Quite a number take and read the current daily and
weekly papers. 
School facilities for the children consist of two district schools and the
Ponca 
Training School. Four pupils attended the former during the nine months'
term, 
and 115 were enrolled at the latter, with an average attendance of 102+.
The 
training school has been ably managed by Prof. J. M. Dankwardt, assisted
by 
a competent and loyal corps of employees. The condition and progress of the
school for the fiscal year is given by Professor Dankwardt as follows: 
Location.-The school is nicely situated at the Ponca Agency, near the left
bank of the 
Salt Fork of the Arkansas River, nearly 2 miles west of the junction of the
Salt Fork 
with the Arkansas River. Whiteeagle station is 3 miles north of the school
and Ponca 
City 8 miles north. 
Attendance.-The lowest average monthly attendance was 80, in September; the
high- 
est, 108, in January. The largest enrollment at any one time was 109, and
the average 
attendance for the year was 102 +. The capacity of the school is 100. There
were but 


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