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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1855
([1855])

[Minnesota superintendency],   pp. 48-68 PDF (8.7 MB)


Page 61

COMMISSIFNER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS.                 61 
inspection at the agency and Yellow Medicine, as I suggested last 
year, we should have the whole here in good time. 
A part of the Medawakantoans having lately requested to be paid 
their annuity half-yearly, has led to the same being fixed by the 
department for the Sisetons and Wahpatons. These people are so 
numerous that their money annuity amounts to about $10 each, and 
when $5,000 worth of provision and $5,000 worth of goods are 
divided among near 4,000 persons, it is clear that they cannot 
advantageously be called in twice from a distance of 100 to 150 miles. 
There is no season of the year when they can be required to come to 
the agency without neglecting their crops, unless it be in the month 
of July, when they have just done hoeing their corn, or the end of 
September, after they have harvested it.    To delay the payment 
later makes it difficult for the Sisetons to return to their homes, as 
the cold weather is set in, and the women and children cannot travel 
without much suffering. Add to this that the annual allowance for 
provision (only about $1 50 per head) will not furnish rations for 
them twice in the year. 
I beg to corroborate and call particular attention to A., Robertson's 
statement about schools.   Nothing can be more injurious to the 
Indians than allowing an accumulation of either school or farming 
fund. They used the expenditure of the whole of these funds. I 
have every reason to believe the Indians have already been tampered 
with, and. you will remember old Itewakingan, at the council last 
payment, said he did not want schools, and wished the money to be 
paid in the Indians' own hands. 
From my own experience of Indians and of those best acquainted 
with them, I am convinced that, if :allowed to accumulate, education 
and civilizing funds are a positive hindrance to the welfare of the 
Indians; and so it has been proved under the treaty of 1837. 
I therefore most earnestly but respectfully entreat that steps be 
immediately taken for commencing manual labor schools for both 
reserves. 
I have the honor to be, sir, yours, very respectfully, 
R. G. MURPHY, 
Indian Agent. 
His Excellency Governor W. A. GORMAN, 
Superintendent of Indian Affair8. 
No. 18. 
HAZELWOOD, MINNESOTA, September 30, 1855. 
SIR: A year ago from the present date I removed my family from 
Lac qui Parle to Hazelwood, and two weeks after we took possession of 
our house, which was still unfinished. For want of room we were 
not in a situation to start a school immediately; but in November I 
employed M r. I. F. Aiton to teach during the winter. For a short 
time after the return of the Indians from Redwood, he taught IDakotah 


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