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)
REPORTS CONCERNING INDIANS IN SOUTH DAKOTA. 351 tion of the reservation during the year, which case was discovered at Wagner, S. Dak., and reported by the police of the town. The offender was arrested, tried in United States court, convicted, and sentenced to the penitentiary for the crime committed. The worst feature of the business we have to contend with now is from the younger Indians themselves, who go off the reservation to the near-by towns and buy and drink all they can and come home drunk, with their pockets full of bottles, and create a disturbance with their families and neighbors. A couple of days ago one young man went to town-Avon, just over the reserve-and bought a jug of liquor, and returning met two others going on the same errand. They stopped, conversed, sampled, and fought then and there, and in the fight committed mayhem by biting off an ear of one of the combatants. I now have all three under arrest-three other cases of Indians awaiting trial in United States court for flagrant violation of the law prohibiting introducing liquor on Indian land. Court of Indian offenses. This court now is used mostly as a court for pre- liminary hearing as an aid to this office in determining what cases should be carried to the higher courts, and is developing most satisfactory results, besides trying petty cases of drunkenness and wife beating. Sale of inherited lands.-During the last fiscal year there have been 21,889 acres sold at an average of $17.62 per acre, or a total of $386,100. While the average price per acre is about the same as for the previous year's sale, yet it is a well-known fact that the bulk of the best lands was sold during the pre- vious year, thereby leaving a lower class of lands for the past year's sale, which tends to reduce the average. It is also known that all the best lands sold for an average of $5 to $7 per acre higher than last year. The money received from such sales has been in every instance placed on deposit in a national bank selected by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs as a depositary for the proceeds of the sale of inherited Indian lands, all in compliance with the amended rules for the sale of inherited lands, as amended September 19, 1904. All the banks selected as such depositaries have been bonded by some one of the several guaranty companies of New York and Baltimore. With respect to the depositing of these funds, the rule under which this was done was approved as stated above, and reads in part as follows: And agreeing that the proceeds to be derived therefrom shall be placed in the nearest and most convenient United States depository to the credit of each heir in proper pro- portion, subject to the check of such heir, or, in the case of minors, subject to the check of their recognized guardians, for amounts not exceeding $10 in any one month when approved by the agent or other officer in charge, and only when so approved, and for sums in excess of $10 upon the approval of such agent only when specifically authorized by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. Which was later amended to include any national bank that might apply for the deposit of such funds, after giving the surety bond required. Up to this, time there has been very little of this money checked out for any purpose, and there still remains on deposit approximately the whole of the proceeds for the year's sale, which is drawing interest at 2 and 3 per cent while awaiting the adjustment by the Department of the Indian debts. There is but very little opposition to this enforced deposit from the Indians themselves, most of them well knowing that it is for their best interests to have this safeguard for their protection from unscrupulous traders and others. The only objection to the procedure comes from the totally incompetent and their friends, the horse dealers and money loaners. District schools.-The number of public or district schools on the reservation is sixteen, with 110 Indian pupils in attendance, intermingled with the white children, which is an increase over the census of 1904 of ten schools and about 30 Indian children in attendance thereat. Our records show that there was in attendance at some school 324 Indian children, distributed as follows: Yankton Agency boarding school ..- - 119 District and graded schools on reserve- - 110 Nonreservation schools-.... 95 and in addition there are a number of families living in towns off the reserva- tion whose children are presumed to be in schools of which we are unable to get any record. R. .1. T YLoB, Indian Agent.
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