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

[Southern superintendency],   pp. 119-177 PDF (23.0 MB)

Page 175

smaller tribes looked well until quite lately, but, from     present 
appearances, I would judge that they will not average more than 
one-half the usual yield. The Osages have nothing but buffalo meat, 
(the little corn they had planted, previous to their leaving on the 
spring hunt, having been cut off by the. drought,) and in consequence 
of their being at war with the Comanches they have not a full 
supply of that. Their great propensity for stealing horses from 
other and neighboring tribes has made them many enemies, and I 
have urged upon them the great necessity of desisting from that 
custom, or they are bound to be great sufferers at the hands of their 
Great Father and the surrounding tribes-that their Great Father 
deprecated such a course to be pursued by his red children. The war 
declared last fall between the Osages and the Sac and Fox Indians 
has been amicably arranged by a reference of the whole affair to 
Judge B. A., James and myself, but how long they will continue 
friends I cannot vouch for; I am of the opinion that both tribes are 
inclined to commit depredations upon each other. The health of the 
smaller tribes, for the past year, has been good, but among the Little 
Osages the smallpox has prevailed to a great extent, some four 
hundred having died with the disease. Doctor Griffith was dis- 
patched to their assistance, and, so soon as he could procure fresh 
virus, he vaccinated all he could find, a portion of them having gone 
out on the spring hunt; he also vaccinated the smaller bands within 
this agency. Dr. Griffith's report to me, setting forth his proceed- 
ings among the Osages, was transmitted by me to the Hon. Commis- 
sioner of Indian Affairs on the 18th of last month. Enclosed you 
will please find the report of Rev. Father Schoenmaker, superin- 
tendent Osage manual labor school; this institution has been so well 
conducted that it- has gained good commendatiom from all persons 
who have visited it and been eye witnesses of the manner in which it 
is conducted by the superintendent and his associates, both in the 
male and female departments'. 
I would not be doing myself justice in permitting this report to 
close did I not commend this school to the most kind and fostering 
care of our government. I have never witnessed more devotion to the 
accomplishment of an object than is manifested by the conductors of 
this school. The small sum they have been receiving for the educa- 
tion of each child I am satisfied is not sufficient to defray their neces-
sary expenses, after the observance of the most rigid economy. It 
is also, perhaps, proper for me to remark that their entire crop of corn,
oats and garden vegetables has been destroyed by the grasshoppers, 
they having had some hundred acres under cultivation, and -previous 
to their approach their crops bid fair for an abundant yield. These 
insects came in such numbers as fairly to obscure the light of the sun. 
Very respectfully, your obedient servant, 
~United States Neosho Agent. 
SDr. C. :W. DEAN, 
Superintendent Indian Affairs, Fort Smith, Arkansas. 

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