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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, for the year 1874

[Utah],   pp. 276-277 PDF (991.0 KB)

Page 277

Since my last report the entire Indian farm, embracing nearly 400 acres,
has been in- 
closed, much of it, as has been stated, by the labor of the Indians themselves.
Our mill- 
house is completed, inclosing grist, saw, and shingle mills all in complete
order, having 
been tested in the manufacture of lumber, shingles, and flour, and have greatly
pleased and 
encouraged our Indians. We have manufactured forty or fifty thousand feet
of lumber and 
about as many thousand shingles, put up an addition to our farm-kitchen and
rendering it suitable for two families, built another for meat and ice house,
besides repairing 
much of the old fence and building considerable post and board fence on the
agency farm. 
Should the honorable Commissioner and others, while looking over the results
of our labors 
and expenditures for the last year, think little had been acomplished, we
will not dispute 
that point, but we beg that they will bear in mind the disadvantages under
which we labor, 
our isolated and, for the greater part of the year, inaccessible position,
and that we procure 
from the forest and manufacture all our own lumber, erect our buildings,
and make improve- 
ments and do farm-work with our ordinary employes, which is not usually the
Many of our Indians have expressed a desire for the establishment of a school,
but up to 
this time we have not been able to put it in operation, both from the want
of the necessary 
funds to erect and furnish the school-house and pay a teacher, and our inability
to procure a 
suitable person to take charge. Through the liberality of the Department
the necessary 
funds have been secured and a teacher engaged, so that we hope to have our
house, which 
is under way, completed and our school in operation this fall. I cannot but
feel solicitous 
for the complete success of this undertaking. I have reflected much upon
the subject; 
still am not clear as to the kind of school best suited to the condition
of our Indians and 
our resources. My judgment is in favor of a boarding manual-labor school,
but I fear our 
resources will not bear the exoense. 
No missionary enterprise has been attempted, but we purpose, in all our school
tion and exercises, to inculcate morhl and religious truth so far as practicable.
It is unpleasant to be compelled to lodge complaints against any persons
with whom you 
are compelled, in the discharge of your duties, to come in contact; but the
repeated corrob- 
orative reports, and the cumulative evidence presented to my mind, perfectly
satisfies me 
that there is a persistent effort on the part of some of the Mormon leaders
to thwart the be- 
nevolent designs of the Government toward the Indians. by discouraging them
from going 
to, and holding out inducements to them to remain off, the reservation. The
only, or at 
least the most efficient, remedy for this evil is the absolute prohibition
of the expenditure of 
a single dollar in the way of presents or subsistence off the reservation,
and liberal support 
and encouragement to those who go to and remain on it, and engage in agriculture.
In conclusion I beg to present some of the wants of my Indians and the agency
my charge, in order that they and it may become self-supporting, or as nearly
so as the na- 
ture of the case will admit, at the earliest possible time. In my opinion,
that legislation and 
that management which do not tend toward this result are radically defective.
I have en- 
deavored, in all my intercourse with and control over my Indians, and in
all the labor and 
expenditures on this agency, to keep that end constantly in view. We think
some consid- 
erable progress has been made, but must confess that it is far below what
we had fondly 
hoped. Various causes have contributed to prevent more satisfactory results.
Our isolated position, being almost inaccessible for teams for about seven
months of the 
year, and the almost impracticable road for the other five months, renders
the management 
of our agency both difficult and expensive. A good road is absolutely demanded
by effi- 
ciency and economy. 
Our greatest items of expense are flour and beef. With judicious encouragement
we can 
in a very few years raise all the flour and other farm-products necessary
for subsistence. On 
the Indian farm, and mainly by Indian labor, we should not only raise all
the beef we need, 
but could and should be able to draw a revenue from the stock raised on the
reservation suffi- 
cient to purchase all the other needed supplies. Could we have the amount
of funds it has 
cost us for beef for the last two years, viz, about $16,000, to invest at
once, I feel confident 
that with judicious management we could not only supply ourselves with beef
for all time 
to come, but be able to encourage deserving Indians by presenting a cow and
calf or a yoke 
of oxen, besides securing the results above indicated. 
I have had the honor to present to honorable Commissioner of Indian Affairs
the views above 
indicated, and am encouraged by knowing that you, in the main, agree with
me; but I am aware 
you are powerless unless the means are placed at your disposal by provision
of law. I there- 
fore, through you, appeal to the honorable the Congress of the United States
to place at 
your disposal, for the benefit of this agency, the means not only for its
mere existence, but 
for its highest development and the best interests of the Indians thereon,
physically, finan- 
cially, intellectually, and morally. 
I have the honor to be, very respectfully, your obedient servant, 
United States Indian Agent. 
HIon. E. P. SMITH, 
Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Washington D. C. 

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