United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1883
Reports of agents in Washington territory, pp. 141-157 PDF (8.3 MB)
156 REPORTS OF AGENTS IN WASHINGTON TERRITORY. INDIAN POLICE. I have found the Indian police here very prompt and efficient in the discharge of their duties, and a great power for good and the restraint of evil. I frequently have to send them outside the reservation, sometimes as much as a hundred miles, to make arrests, recover stolen property, &c., and so far they have always been successful in the performance of their required duties, without interference or hindrance from the whites. When ordered outside the reservation in the performance of any duty, I always give them a written order, stating the duty to be performed, and requesting white men not to interfere with but to assist them when necessary and convenient. There being no law requiring white men outside the reservation to respect the authority of an Indian policeman, I respectfully suggest the enactri ent of a law by Congress giving Indian policemen the power and authority of United States mar- .hals in the performance of their duties outside of reservations. CHRISTIANITY. Experience has fully demonstrated that no healthy and permanent progress in civ- ilization has ever yet been made among our Indians unaccompanied by Christianity. This truth is clearly apparent on this reservation, where all Indians who are trust- worthy and upright in their conduct, and have cultivated farms, good, comfortable dwelling houses, barns, granaries, implements, cattle, horses, domestic fowls, with the dress and cleanliness of the whites, are all now, and have for years been, profess- ing Christians. On the other hand, all Indians of this agency who are untrustworthy, lazy, live in rude, comfortless dwellings, or wickeups, amid filth, vermin, and squalor, the men having long and often plaited hair, and dressed more or less in the costume of the savage, depending but little on agriculture, and that little generally carried on by the labor of the women, and looking to fish, game, roots, and berries as the prin- cipal source of subsistence-such Indians, without exception, are not Christians, and adhere to the vile superstitions of their ancestors. The transforming power of pure Christianity is everywhere apparent among our Indian tribes: therefore Christianity should, by the Government, be highly favored among the Indians, and no officials or employ6s who do not respect, profess, and practice Christianity appointed, as it is upon officials and employes sent among them that they are dependent for civilization, which without Christianity is only cultured barbarism. AGRICULTURAL PRODUCTS, LIVE STOCK, ETC. On account of the long-continued drought in this region, there not having been any rain since the 1st of May, the grain crops will not be near so abundant on this reser- vation this year as some previous years. But all who have attempted in good faith to raise wheat, oats, barley, potatoes, and garden vegetables, have succeeded reason- ably well. Those who depend upon agriculture for subsistence and made a proper effort in that direction will have amply sufficient for their maintenance, and many will have a surplus for sale. This is not a corn country. and but little is raised except for table use in the form of roasting ears. Wheat is raised for bread, and some for hog-feed. Hay, oats, and barley are raised for feed of cattle and horses. Harvesting 'of wheat, oats, barley, and hay is about all over, and thrashing-machines are busy in thrashing wheat, oats, and barley. The thrashing of the Department grain is about finished, yielding 1,200 bushels of wheat. 2,000 bushels of oats, and 1,000 bushels of barley. There is, in addition to the new wheat, about 1,600 bushels of old wheat of last year and the year before on hand belonging to the Department. About 50 tons of hay have been put up for the Depart- ment from the school farm and about 600 tons at the cattle ranch. These supplies of grain and hay will, I think, be amply sufficient for department use for a year. As the grain belonging to the Indians has not yet been thrashed, except in small part, the amount thereof can only be estimated as follows: Wheat, 3,500 bushels; oats, 8,000 bushels; barley, 3,000 bushels; and hay, 2,500 tons. I received from Agent Wilbur 1,241 head of neat cattle, 442 calves, 77 horses, and 12 mules. I have issued to the Indians 71 head of cattle and killed 137 head for beef; have issued to Indians 121 horses and 3 mules. But all these matters are minutely set forth in the statistics herewith sent as a bill ,of particulars. Very respectfully, R. H. MILROY, Uuited States Indian Agent. The COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS.
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