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United States. Office of Indian Affairs / Annual report of the commissioner of Indian affairs, for the year 1884
([1884])

Report of the commissioner of Indian affairs,   pp. [III]-LV ff. PDF (21.4 MB)


Page IX

REPORT OF THE COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS. 
tribe of Indians. If this 3,000,000 acres are so disposed of as to give 
the Crows some benefit of the proceeds thereof, they will no longer re- 
quire any aid from the Government, and thus one fraction of the Indian 
problem will have been solved, and an example and incentive given to 
other tribes of Indians to do likewise. 
Tonkawas.-A small tribe of Tonkawa Indians has for many years 
been living in the State of Texas without any reservation or right to 
any particular location. Congress for several years has made a small 
appropriation for their relief, and in the absence of any authority to ap-
point, or funds to pay an agent, an officer of the Army has been detailed
to look after their interests. The condition of these Indians has not im-
proved, but, on the contrary, has become worse each year. At the last 
session of Congress an appropriation of $10,000 was made for the "1
sup- 
port, civilization, and instruction of the Tonkawa Indians, and for their
removal to a reservation in the Indian Territory." Arrangements have
now been made for removing these Indians from Texas to the Iowa 
reservation in the Indian Territory, where by treaty stipulations the 
Government has the right to place other Indians than the Iowas. This 
will place these Indians under a regular agent, and on land where they 
can legally remain, with an opportunity to make homes for their fami- 
lies, and engage in agricultural pursuits, and a chance to avail them- 
selves of the advantages of the Government schools in that region.. 
COURT OF INDIAN OFFENSES. 
In my last annual report I had the honor to call your attention to the 
"Court of Indian Offenses" which had been established at a few
of the 
agencies; and, believing that the organization of this court would be 
a practical benefit to the Indian service, and tend materially to the 
advancement and civilization of the Indians, I recommended that a 
sufficient appropriation be made for the purpose of paying the judges 
a reasonable compensation for their services. At every agency where 
the court has been established it has been well received, and the decis-
ions of the judges respectfully acquiesced in and quietly and peaceably 
enforced. At some of the agencies this court has been instrumental 
in abolishing many of the most barbarous and pernicious customs that 
have existed among the Indians from time immemorial; and if properly 
encouraged, and the Indians are made to believe that the Government 
is honest in its endeavors to promote their welfare and intellectual and
moral advancement, I believe that in a few years polygamy and the 
heathenish customs of the sun dance, scalp dance, and war dance will 
be entirely abolished. 
The reports of the agents of the agencies where this court is.organ- 
ized indicate very conclusively the beneficial results already accom- 
plished. The agent of the Umatilla Agency, Oregon, says that this 
court- 
Has worked admirably and made a radical change, especially among the young
men of the tribe, for the better, as all disorders or offenses that come
before the judges 
here are inexorably punished. 
ix 


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