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

Reports concerning Indians in South Dakota,   pp. 328-352 PDF (11.7 MB)

Page 331

CROWCREEK, S. DAK., August 28, 1905. 
The census roll accompanying this report gives the population as follows:
Total population (males, 465;-females, 544)-.....      1, 009 
Children of school age, 5 to 18 (males, 105; females, 120)  225 
Children of school age are accounted for as follows: 
Crow Creek boarding school_                              109 
Catholic Mission boarding school------------4 
Chamberlain Indian school                      -41 
Carlisle Indian school_  --     -                         5 
Attending district schools-  -12 
Pierre, S. Dak., school---                                1 
Cheyenne River---              --                        1 
Living in Oregon_-                                --     3 
Excused for tubercular trouble--                           9 
Total               --225 
The census for the year ending June 30, 1904, shows a total population of
1,025, which makes a decrease of 16 in the population for the present year.
There are many causes for the number of deaths in the last year among this
tribe, tuberculosis being the main one. I am satisfied that a number of deaths
were caused from exposure during the winter months, from the fact that many
of the old Indians did not have sufficient clothing to keep them comfortable
many of them contracted severe colds, and with their tubercular trouble caused
their death. Insanitary conditions about their homes also was responsible
the decrease, many of them not having a house to live in, crowded in with
having habitations, perhaps ten to fifteen in one old log hut, roof covered
dirt, and the sanitary conditions were such that would endanger the lives
any human being. The providing of comfortable houses for these people is
great importance and should be immediately considered. The matter of sup-
plying the necessary clothing for the old and infirm Indians was taken up
myself last fall, but nothing was done by your Office in the way of furnishing
the same. 
Agriculture.-As stated in previous reports, this reserve is not adapted to
farming. However, this year has been an exceptional one. We have had suffi-
cient rainfall to have produced an excellent crop of any kind that might
been planted. Not having seed grain to issue my Indians nothing was planted
except corn and potatoes, both of which-are promising good returns. Without
irrigation farming at this agency can not be relied upon for the support
of these 
Stock raising.-The raising of cattle, horses, and sheep is, in my opinion,
only industry that will enable the Indians of this reserve to become self-
supporting. I am pleased to state that my Indians are manifesting greater
interest each year in the cattle industry; they are providing sufficient
food and 
shelter for their stock much better than could be expected from a class of
who have lived in idleness and have been fed and clothed all their lifetime
a benevolent Government, and who have only for, a short period been compelled
to work and help support themselves. The loss of cattle on this reservation
during the past winter was very small. I am safe in saying that 20 head will
cover all that was lost during the winter of 1904-5 on this reservation.
In the. month of June, 1905, all calves were rounded up, castrated, and 
branded with I. D. and the private brand of the owner placed upon them also;
1,180 have been branded at this time, and there will be at least 50 or 60
to be branded, which will make something over 1,200 head increase in 
cattle this year. If this same percentage of increase can be maintained 
for a few years these people will not have to suffer for food and clothing
as they have in the past. All Indian cattle on this reserve were in the month
of June, 1905, inspected by the Government cattle inspector, and no contagious
or infectious disease of any kind was found among them. It is with great
difficulty that some of the owners of these cattle are kept from killing
calves for food, and that is one reason why the I. D. brand is placed upon
increase, as it prevents them, to a large extent, from slaughtering their
as well as disposing of them otherwise. 

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