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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1879
([1879])

Reports of agents in Washington territory,   pp. 140-159 PDF (11.7 MB)


Page 142

142      REPORTS OF AGENTS IN         WASHINGTON      TERRITORY. 
We then visited the Indian farms near the mission; found their fences had
been put 
in good order, some land already sown, and other being prepared. After visiting
some ten or twelve of their comfortable log cabins, erected by themselves,
left for old 
Fort Colville; crossed the Columbia at Kettle River Falls ferry and camped
for night 
at the Indian village. The Lake Indian@, who have farms within a few miles
of this 
place, have here built fourteen small log cabins and eight barns or stables;
they have 
also by their own labor erected a small church, a chapel, 18 by 25 feet,
with board 
floor, with a small detached cabin for the occupancy of the Fathers when
visiting 
them. Having all left for their farms, every house in the village was deserted;
we 
took possession of the Fathers' cabin for the night. Upon inquiry of some
Indians 
camped near here we found it would be dangerous traveling to the Okanogan
country, 
Kettle River being very high and dangerous fording (an Indiun a few days
before hav- 
ing had a horse drowned in crossing), and the snow still so deep on the mountain
trail 
as to render that impassable; we -ere therefoie compelled to abandon that
part of 
our trip. 
We then went up the Columbia about 12 miles, stopping at the different farms
on the way. The first was Pierre's-about 12 acres, just opening-location
and land 
good, with a chance of disposing of vegetables to the miners in that vici'nity;
gave him some garden seeds. The next place was Anatole's; about 125,acres
under 
fence, 50 to 60 under cultivation; a good farm, well fenced and cultivated.
Anatole: 
was engaged when we were there in hauling rails upon a wagon of his own construc-
tion. The wheels were Of blocks sawed from logs about 20 inches in diameter,
with 
heavy axletrees, bolsters, stakes, and tongue, and capable when rigged of
holding and 
hauling 20 to 30 rails. During our trip we saw some eight or ten of this
style of wagon 
or truck. Anatole has a good log dwelling, barn, and hen house. 
The next place visited was Isaac's; about 100 acres inclosed and 30 under
cultiva- 
tion ; good log dwelling; poor barn. The next farm visited belonged to old
Edward's 
band. Small, well-cultivated farms, with good fences and a few very poor
barns in the 
vicinity of their farms, they residing in the summer or farming season in
their lodges 
near the farm, and removing in the winter, bag and baggage, to the village,
or collec- 
tion of houses near the ferry landing and vicinity of the church. 
After leaving old Edward's camp, we struck up the mountain and over towards.
Ket- 
tle River; passed three small farms ju&t opening, and came to young Edward's
place, 
a fine farm owned by him, and another, containing abot 130 acres, near a
small lake. 
They each had 30 to.40 aeres under cultivation. Edward was putting up a fine
log 
barn, and I promised him some nails for the roof of it. Froin here to where
we began 
the descent to Kettle River passed several fine farms incloaed by good fences,
and upon 
which the Indians werebusily engaged in plowing, sowing, and planting. The
graz- 
ing around in these :hills was very fine, finer than anywhere else upon the
trip, and 
equal and in some degree resembling the hills (not quite so rolling, biat
more elevated) 
between Snake;River &ad Colfax. We struck Kettle River, about 12 miles
above its 
mouth, and a short distance above the farms of Join's band. On the way down
stopped at the different farms. Saw Join, and his people living right about
him-Jo- 
seph, Adolph, Adrian, Cornelins, Phiip, and Andre; they all have good farms,
not 
large, and with rich soil, but cannot, with the limited number of implements,
do a& 
well as they wish to do, and as they otherwise would do if better supplied.
Their 
farms are quite a little distance apart,-and they have but one plow (a small
one at 
that) among them all. I told them I would represent the facts to you, and
that you 
would assist them as soon as in your power to do so. Adrian and Philip have
not yet 
decided whether to put in any wheat or not, for by the time the plow came
to then 
for their work the land would be so dry that their crops would amount to
nothing And 
their labor be lost. They need a cradle, scythe and suath (there being some
good hay 
land near them), two augers, and a grindstone. Below this band we came to
the farm 
of Norbet and others. They need a plow and hoe. 
After leaving these places, we again ascended the mountain to visit the farms
of 
Quis-tah and his people. They are located some three or four miles from both
Colum- 
bia and Kettle Rivers, on a most beautiful prairie in this high land. There
are two 
inclosures; the first, of about 100 acres, in wheat, corn, oats, and gardens.
This place 
was owned and occupied by two Indians, who were, at the time we were there,.en-
gaged in building fences. After a ride of half a mile, came to Quis-tah's
and others' 
farms, about 300 acres under fence, and two-thirds of it cultivated. Part
of their 
wheat was sown, and two plows were then running, preparing for oats, corn,
potatoes, 
&c. Quis-tah himself, who is a good mechanic, was putting up a fine log
dwelling. I 
noticed near his house four or five hundred feet of lumber and pit-saw frame
with saw 
logs ready to again commence sawing their flooring and other lumber as soon
as the 
farm-work was over. In addition to the house then building, there were four
other 
'comfortable log dwellings occupied by families, with log barns for tables
and thrash- 
ing; log pig-pens, and two hen-houses of log, one for the laying and the
other for set- 
ting hens. 
After leav'ing Qiiis-tah's place, ue descended to the Columbia, and~crossing,
camped 


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