University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1865

Washington superintendency,   pp. 67-101 PDF (14.8 MB)

Page 69

WASHINGTON SUPERINTENDENCY.                    69 
portion of which is embraced within this reservation. The heavy lumber- 
ing business upon the neighboring waters will always create a demand 
for forage at remunerative prices, and I firmly believe that enough of the
single article of hay can be produced to maintain the agency after the land
is cleared and seeded to grass, and yet it is no better for grass than for
potatoes and other vegetables, or for peas, barley, and wheat. There is no
doubt, therefore,& that true economy would dictate the giving of every
sible encouragement and aid to the effort now being made to clear up and
improve the reservation, so that the Indians can be induced to bring their
families there and place them within reach of instruction. 
In the Tulalip agency, which holds jurisdiction over all the Indians who
are parties to the treaty of Point Elliot, an industrial school has been
years in operation, under the efficient labors of Father Chirouse, a Catholic
priest, who has persevered in his work in the face of impediments, dis- 
couragements, and difficulties, until he has got his school into a condition
that promises, with reasonable liberality hereafter on the part of the gov-
ernment, to be a success. If a sufficient amount of land was cleared, I think
the school could raise its provisions. But the land in that locality being
very heavily timbered, it is a slow process for school-boys to clear it up
get it into a state for cultivation. It will cost at least $75 per acre to
the land, and yet the school nbeds 20 acres of good ground cleared and fitted
for a crop. If this could be done previous to the next seeding time, and
suitable encouragement be given to the process of gardening in the proper
season, I think the cost of sustenance, if not entirely saved, would be greatly
diminished. In respect to clothing, the school needs simply the materials.
The manufacturing of garmentsp shoes, &c., can all be done by the pupils
themselves, under one of their most useful branches of instruction. The 
benefits of this school have thus far been limited to boys, though the super-
intendent of instruction is extremely anxious to connect with it a female
partment, upnder the management of the Sisters of Charity. The limited 
appropriations for the support of the school have rendered this.hitherto
practicable, and therefore the education of the girls on this reservation,
throughout the entire agency, is neglected. To maintain an industrial board-
ing school for both sexes on the plan which Father Chirouse would prescribe,
would reqiire an appropriation of $5,000, for the completion of the building,
fixtures, and furniture, and for tuition and sustenance. And while I am not
in sympathy with the religious faith of Father Chirouse, yet I am clear in
the conviction that his efforts are decidedly antagonistic to all the demoral-
izing influences which are so much to be deprecated among Indians; and 
that so far as the influence of his school can be made to extend among the
children of the tribes of that agency, we would have a right to expect not
only good moral results, but constant progress in -knowledge. I therefore
take pleasure in calling your attention to his report, herewith transmitted,
and in recommending that the necessary means be appropriated to carry out
the plans and desires of one of the most untiring and faithful men in the
I will also here take occasion tossay that during the past year I have 
found it necessary, in order to sustain the school, and prevent it from abso-
lute failure for want of sustenance, to disburse to it from the annuity fund,
in the form of provisions and clothing, to the amount of nearly $1,000. 
I desire also to call the attention of the department to the saw-mill, in
connexion with the Tulalip agency. There is an abundance of the finest 
quality of timber on the reservation; and there is no one article more neces-
sary to the comfort and civilization of the Indian than building material.
They all have mud houses to live in; and unless we can get them off the 
ground, and into more comfortable quarters, little can be done for their

Go up to Top of Page