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

Report of the Ute Commission,   pp. [170]-177 PDF (4.1 MB)


Page 177

REPORT OF UTE COMMISSION. 
177 * 
,out such a mill; and if it were built with their own money, they would probably
take a greater interest in learning how to manage it. At present, I am informed,
the 
government pays 9 cents a pound for flour delivered at the agency; the agent
esti- 
mates it would cost 3 cents a pound if he had a mill. 
Secondly. About twenty-five short-horned bulls. Most of the cattle belonging
to 
the Indians are of the long-horned Texas stock, and an infusion of the short-horned
breeds would not only improve the milking qualities of the cows, but also
increase 
their average weight. If the other band is located here, the herd without
great ex- 
pense could be enlarged sufficiently to meet the demands of all the Indians
without 
the aid of beef-contractors. 
'Thirdly. About twelve stallions, well adapted for draught purposes. The
Indian 
ponies are of very little use, except under the saddle, and if work-horses
will be 
needed for farm purposes, either they must be purchased aud taken into the
country 
or else the native stock must be improved. The Indians think much of their
ponies, 
and any effort tending toward their improvement would be gratefully appreciated.
Fourthly. A good stock of farming implements and seeds. The agent reported
that 
several families had expressed their willingness to work, but he had no tools
for them. 
They do not need expensive articles, but something strong and durable,'likely
to 
stand the hard knocks novices will give them. Of seeds the staples are most
needed. 
Fifthly. An increase of the police force allowed by law. This agency would,
under 
the general act, be allowed eight or nine policemen. At the start, if the
agencies are 
to be consolidated, it would probably be well to have the number increased
to fifty, 
the extra to be paid from the tribal fund. Fifty men carefully chosen, required
to be 
at or near the agency, might help to keep the rest of the band from going
so far from 
the reservation. The first year or so such a force would need a chief; and
a good man 
can now be secured for twelve or fourteen hundred dollars. I refer to Capt.
U. M. Cur- 
tis; he has great influence with these Indians, has lived with thcm for many
years, 
speaks their language well, and has led them as soldiers. In Mr. Curtis the
agent 
would not only have an interpreter, a want he sadly feels at present, but
would also 
have in charge of his police a capable man, respected and looked up to by
the Indians, At 
least work in such a position could be easily tested by a year's trial, it
being his dutynot 
4only to keep the Indians quiet and orderly, but make them remain on the
reservation; 
provided, of course, traders at the agency are permitted to sell ammunition,
though 
it be in limited quantities, and subject to the order of the agent. 
. In conclusion, whatever is to be done should be done quickly. It is very
important 
that they should be put to work early in the spring, and if they are henceforward
to 
live under a new regime, the sooner it is introduced to them the better.
It is certainly to be desired that the buildings at the new agency will be
of a some- 
what more civilized character than the rude log huts at present occupied.
The In- 
dians learn only by imitation, and with the good saw-mill now on the reservation,
plenty of lumber, and the good supply of employls, there is nothing to prevent
the 
erection of comfortable homes, and at the same time models fit to be copied.
I left the agency on my return Wednesday night, September 18, and reached
Fort 
Steele Monday, the 23d of September. 
Having received telegraphic instructions to proceed to the Uintah Reservation,
es- 
corted by Lieutenant McCauley, I left Fort Steele September 24, arriving
at Salt Lake 
the evening of the following day. 
Thursday, the 26th, was occupied in fitting up for the trip. A wagon warranted
to 
carry us over the mountains and a guide were hired. 
Friday morning at sunrise we started, and had gone but twenty miles before
the 
wagon broke down. Finding it useless to attempt the mountains with a broken
wag- 
on, to save time I hired a horse and sent our driver as courier over the
trail to the 
agency, requesting the agent to procure of the Indians their release to the
country 
south and west of the San Juan district; I returned to Salt Lake City. While
wait- 
ing for the return of the courier I recieved a call from Tabby, chief of
the Unitahs, 
and Tuckawanna, subchief.  They each expressed themselves as pleased with
the 
work they are doing at die agency and as willing to sign the release. The
courier 
returned with a letter from the agent, to the effect that the Indians were
out hunting, 
but as soon as possible he would convene them and secure their signatures
to the re- 
lease. About a month later I received this document properly sigued and witnessed,
and take pleasure in presenting it herewith [D]. 
From the Indians met and Agent Critchlow it would seem as if their needs
were 
about the same as at White River. They particularly requested that stoves,
wagons, 
and harness be given them, in addition to whatever stock and farming implements
might be sent. (See Mr. Critchlow's letter, marked E, herewith submitted.)
As requested, I reported on Saturday, October 20, at Fort Garland, to the
chairman 
of the commission. 
All of which is respectfully submitted. 
W. S. STICKNEY, 
The Hon. UTE COMMIssIONES.                 &ecretary Ute Sp cial Comtsion.
12 IND) 


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