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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1874
([1874])

Information, with historical and statistical statements, relative to the different tribes and their agencies,   pp. 23-[84] PDF (29.5 MB)


Page 79

REPORT OF      THE COMMISSIONER        OF INDIAN AFFAIRS.           79 
the Quinaielt agency and reservation be discontinued, and the Indians now
in charge 
of Agent Henry at Quinaielt be removed to Neah Bay. It is also recommended
that 
the Neah Bay reservation be enlarged by extending the same southward a distance
of 
fifteen miles. 
The superintendent of Indian affairs for Washington Territory and the agent
at 
Neah Bay in several annual reports have recommended the purchase of a schooner
for 
the use of these Indians. It is well known that this portion of the coast
during a por- 
tion of the year is dangerous to navigation, even by vessels of considerable
size, and 
although the canoes used by the Indians are very large and superior in their
construc- 
tion, and are managed with a degree of skill scarcely equaled, many of the
fishermen 
who venture out to a distance of thirty or forty miles into the ocean, in
pursuit of 
whales and seals, never return. It is, therefore, recommended that authority
be given 
to the agent to purchase and man a schooner for the use of these consolidated
bands, 
and that an appropriation of $5,000 for that purpose be made. 
GENERAL RECOMMENDATIONS. 
By an expenditure of from $t,000 to $1,500 in building a (like and flood.gate,
not 
more than two hundred yards in length being required, about 2,000 acres of
excellent 
land for grass and cultivation would be reclaimed; and, as no land suitable
for these 
purposes on this reservation is at present available, an allowance for this
purpose should 
be made. 
It is also recommended that the President be vested with the power to dispose
of'the 
nine reservations vacated, for the best available price, and on such terms
as are, in his 
judgment, most desirable; and that the proceeds of such sale be invested
for the 
benefit of the Indians. From the best information obtained, it is believed
that the sale 
of these reservations will realize an amount very considerably beyond the
cost of re- 
moving the Indians, extinguishing the claim of settlers upon the land proposed
to be 
included in the enlarged reservation, and the payment, in accordance with
treaty pro- 
visions, for improvements made by Indians upon reservations from which they
are re- 
moved. 
It is recommended that an amount sufficient to cover the cost of removing
the Indians 
and extinguishing the claims of the settlers be appropriated by Congress,
and that the 
sum realized from the sale of reservations be invested as a permanent fund
for the 
education and agricultural improvement of the Indians. If, however, in the
judgment 
of Congress it is deemed wise to use such portion of the proceeds of the
sale as may be 
necessary to re-imburse the Government for the appropriation suggested, the
amount 
will be ample for that purpose. 
Especial attention is asked to the importance of some more positive provision
for 
the education of these Indians. Many families of adult Indians educated in
the 
reservation boarding-schools were visited. In each instance a marked improvement
in 
the intelligence, manner of living, industry, and everything that pertains
to civiliza- 
tion was observed, and no instance of any advanced civilization came to notice,
unless preceded by such educational advantages. It is of vital importance,
if these 
Indians are to attain any considerable degree of civilization, that ample
provision be 
made for the education of their children away from the demoralizing influences
of 
their own homes, in which agriculture, mechanics, and various branches of
industry 
should also be taught. The agent should be required to compel the attendance
of the 
children of all parents residing upon his reservation at school, and authority
necessary 
for that purpose should be vested in him. 
A large majority of the Indians occupying the country in question do not
now 
reside upon reservations; very many of them are in employment at the mills
and by 
lumbermen and farmers, and many are industrious and skillful in their avocations.
In the judgment of the commissioners, it would be an unwise policy to require
or 
encourage such Indians to come again within the special care or bounty of
the Gov- 
ernment. On the other hand, the policy is recommended of encouraging able-bodied
Indians upon the reservations to go into the employment of citizens outside;
and that 
it be made the duty of the agent to interfere, if necessary, for the protection
of any 
Indians so employed; that there be given authority to any Indian, on renouncing
his 
tribal relations, to acquire a homestead upon the public domain and to enjoy
the 
benefits of at least a restricted citizenship. 
There is no reason why a judicious and efficient enforcement of these provisions
should not result within a very brief period of years in the absorption of
all the Indi- 
ans in this portion of the Territory, in the general mass of community, and
in releasing 
the Government from any further obligation to provide for their care as a
separate peo- 
ple. An allotment of land, limited in extent, to each niale adult Indian
residing upon 
a reservation, the title to remain inalienable for a period of years, but
with a substan- 
tial guarantee of permanency by the Government, would prove an essential
inducement 
to cultivate and improve the same. 
A reform seems desirable in the selection of appointees, and their assignments
to 


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