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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1883
([1883])

Reports of agents in Indian territory,   pp. 60-90 PDF (14.9 MB)


Page 61

REPORTS OF AGENTS IN INDIAN          TERRITORY.            b  
by few. And this enterprise is not confined to the leading men. Other and
younger 
nembers of the tribe are following the example set, and are accumulating
herds as 
rapidly as their opportunities will permit. They have engaged in agriculture
more 
extensively than the Cheyennes and have this season been rewarded with excellent
crops. They seem to be less easily discouraged than the Cheyennes, but correspond-
ingly lack the energy and determination possessed by the Cheyennes. 
AGRICULTURE. 
The agency farm, containing about 100 acres, is maintained. The necessity
for 
employing all the help authorized by the Department in other branches of
the agency 
work the present season necessitated the renting of the agency farm. The
ground 
was rented out to Indians, most of them having previously been employed as
laborers. 
They planted corn, have put much labor on the crop, and are rewarded with
fair pros- 
pect of an excellent yield. Of this the Government will receive one-third
as rental. 
Owing to a deficiency in the appropriations no seeds were furnished the Indians
of 
the agency last spring. Many, however, purchased seeds of the traders and
planted 
small gardens, which were successfully grown. Very little grain has been
raised by 
the Cheyennes, while many fields of corn of a rich color, and giving evidence
of hav- 
ing received much attention, can be seen in the vicinity of the various Arapaho
camps in the rich bottom lands bordering on the rivers and small streams.
Vege- 
tables, melons, &c., have been grown in abundance, and some of the Indians
have 
earned fair wages by peddling the same at the agency and Fort Reno. 
In connection with each of the schools a small farm has been cultivated by
the 
school boys under the supervision of the superintendent. Quite good corn
and nu- 
merous vegetables have been raised, sufficient to supply the schools with
all that was 
required in the vegetable line. The matter of farming in connection with
the schools 
is one of great and growing importance. The boys who engage in cultivating
the 
crops by detail seem to relish the work, have a desire to make it a success,
and take 
a genuine pride in it when accomplished. They require some white man to plan
and 
oversee the work, and to keep their implements in order, until they have
learned to 
do this themselves; and with such a man, who would properly be termed an
industrial 
teacher, the farm work could be more extensively engaged in, with greater
profit to 
the schools and to the children employed. 
RESERVATION. 
The matter of reservation has been a subject of remark in the reports for
several 
years, and still the lands occupied by the Cheyennes and Arapahoes remain
unconfirmed 
to them. This question has been presented to the Department in various forms,
and 
the action of Congress in speedily confirming to them the lands they occupy
solicited. 
They are satisfied with this reservation, have made extensive improvements
thereon, 
and the Government has substantial and costly buildings at this agency, and
it is 
very important that Congress take some action looking to the confirmation
as soon as 
possible. 
A portion of the reservation lying west of the Wichita Reservation and south
of the 
Canadian River assigned to the Cheyennes and Arapahoes by Executive order
of 
August 10, 1869, has been claimed by the Wichitas and Caddos through representa-
tions made to them by one Joseph Leonard and other squaw men. In May last,
under 
instructions from the Department, Hon. E. B. Townsend, special Indian agent,
visited 
this and the Kiowa and Comanche reservations for the purpose of investigating
the 
claims to the land in question held by the Wichitas and Caddos. Mr. Townsend
made 
a thorough and impartial investigation, but I am not informed as to his conclusions
resulting from the investigation, or his report thereon. Suffice it to say
that the land 
which the Wichitas are making a pretense of claiming was assigned to the
Chey- 
ennes and Arapahoes by Executive order of August 10, 1869, in lieu of their
treaty re8- 
ervation; is occupied and controlled by them, and lawfully and rightly belongs
to 
them. 
For a number of years the western portion of the Cheyenne and Arapaho Reserva-
tion has been occupied by unauthorized cattle men and their herds, who have
been 
grazing without remunerating the Indians therefor and in violation of Department
orders. The parties thus holding cattle claimed to have secured the right
to so hold 
by gaining the consent of a few individual Indians located on or in close
proximity 
to the range occupied, and by paying them for the privilege. The reservation
is held 
in common, and in justice to the Indians it is due that all share alike in
the advan- 
tages to be derived from this reservation. Orders have been promptly issued
to such 
cattle men to remove their cattle beyond the reservation limits, and the
orders were 
in most instances as promptly obeyed, but the reservation lines are only
imaginary, 
and in a short time cattle would again be feeding on the lands they had so
recently 
vacated. Troops have been called into action for the purpose of enforcing
the orders, 
nllv it" th' ni re-' It 


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