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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1905, Part I

Reports concerning Indians in Kansas,   pp. 224-227 PDF (1.9 MB)

Page 226

is invested in improvements. Several good houses are now under contract,
be paid for either from money received for rents or from the proceeds derived
from the sale of inherited lands. 
Inherited lands.-Under the act of May 27, 1902, for the sale of inherited
Indian lands there have been about 5,000 acres sold, the average price received
being a fraction over $20 per acre. A number of the tracts were bought by
who are improving them for the purpose of making homes, and no better plan
could be introduced for the civilization of the Indian, the white purchaser
becoming a neighbor to the Indian, and in the daily contact with the civilization
of the white man they acquire more or less of his customs. In a few years
it means free schools on the reservation for the white and Indian children.
I am more than ever convinced that if these lands were offered for sale upon
the plan suggested in my annual report for 1904, on annual payments at a
low rate of interest, the heirs would obtain a better price, and a class
of men 
would become the purchasers who would become citizens of the reservation,
and thus benefit the heirs in the additional price paid for the land, as
well as 
the substantial improvements made thereon, enhancing the value of the adjoin-
ing property. 
Civilization.-The Indians of this reservation are progressing slowly toward
civilization and eventually to citizenship. While there is much to discourage
worker among these people, when the progress and changed conditions of the
life of the Indian on the reservation are carefully considered, the advancement
made within the past quarter of a century is surprising. It is from the tepee
to the well-built, and in some cases tasteful, cottage, furnished with many
the comforts of civilized life; and one of the hopeful signs, especially
among the 
school graduates, is the growing desire manifested by them for better and
comfortable homes-a looking upward to better things. 
Industries.-There are no industries on the reservation except those of farm-
ing and stock raising. A number of the more progressive members are thus
engaged quite extensively, and their influence on the less progressive is
manifested in the increased number who are either cultivating their land
employing labor to assist them in cultivating their allotments. 
Missionary work.-The Methodist Church has erected a small chapel in the 
reservation and has a minister and his wife. as missionary workers. The 
Catholic Church also does missionary work on the reservation. 
Health.-There has not been an epidemic of any disease on the reservation
the past year, and but little sickness. Tuberculosis is very prevalent, and
seems to be on the increase, and is the enemy that will eventually exterminate
the race if it is ifot checked. Extracts from the report of the agency physician,
F. H. Welty, are as follows: 
These Indians, I find, like others, In my long experience of over sixteen
years in the 
Indian service, are subject to consumption, scrofula, and such degenerative
changes as 
result from phthisis. The mixed bloods are very much subject to the degenerative
resulting from intermarriage. In the young there is a great deal of skin
disease, eczema 
being the most frequent. Births are very frequent, but owing to neglect of
common laws 
of health the death rate is high among infants of a few months of age. 
I find a good deal of malarial disease, although we have not yet reached
the fall, 
when the extensive decomposition of vegetable matter will release the miasm
of this dis- 
ease in abundant quantities in the creek bottoms, where these people mostly
build their 
homes. I look for a great deal of sickness from this cause this fall. 
We have had no epidemic of any contagious disease except influenza, with
a few 
deaths, complicated with pneumonia. In March we had three cases of varioloid.
recovered (in same family). I immediately vaccinated this family, as also
near neigh- 
bors, and fortunately confined this disease to them. Also, as soon as I could
procure a 
good supply of vaccine matter, I vaccinated the employees of agency and school;
the pupils of the school. No other cases of smallpox on this reserve have
The Potawatomi School is conducted in a most able manner, and the care of
the pupils 
by the matrons is most efficient. The percentage of sickness among these
children I find 
less than that of some others that I was connected with formerly. Two girls
about 15 
years of age developed acute phthisis and were sent home and soon died; also
one boy 
with scrofulous periostitis was discharged from school and Is under treatment
by me. 
With these exceptions the health of the pupils of this school is very good.
Education.-There is only one school on the reservation-the Potawatomi 
Training School, with a capacity rated at 80 pupils, but the enrollment has
over 100, with an average attendance of about 95. The equipment of the school
will be equal to any reservation school in the service when the employees'
ters, now under contract, are completed. 
Improvements.-There is now under construction a new employees' cottage. 
When completed it will largely relieve the congested condition of the dormitory
and add very much to the comfort of the pupils and employees. 
Superintendent and Special Disbursing Agent. 

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