Emporia News, June 10, 1870.
THE NUMBER OF INDIANS IN THE COUNTRY
Col. E. S. Parker, Commissioner of Indian Affairs, has recently made a report of the number and condition of Indian tribes in the country, from which we copy such facts as will be of interest to our readers.
The Indians in Nebraska are the Santee Sioux, the Winnebagos, the Omahas, the Sacs and Foxes of the Missouri, and Iowas, the Otoes, and Missourias, and the Pawnees.They number 9,483.
In Kansas we have the Kickapoos, who emigrated from what is now Illinois.They now number 265. During the war a number of them went into Mexico, and remained there.
The Kaws, or Kansas Indians, are indigenous to the country and number 718.They are poor, lazy, and improvident.
The Pottawatomies, north of Topeka, came from Michigan and Indiana, and number 2,025.They are moving to the Indian Territory.
The Osages are indigenous to the country they now occupy.Their diminished reserve extends along the southern boundary of Kansas, commencing fifty-five miles west of the eastern boundary of the State and extending to the one hundredth meridian west.They number 4,400. They will soon be removed to a new home.
The Sacs and Foxes of the Mississippi originally occupied a large tract of country in Missouri, Iowa, and Wisconsin. Most of them have now removed to a new reservation, south of the Cherokee lands. They number 957.
The Chippewa and Munsee, or Christian Indians, number 85.
The Ottawas, of Blanchard=s For, Roche de Boeuf, are from Ohio and Michigan. A reservation has been assigned them in the Indian Territory, but none of them have left. They number 171.
The Wyandottes are from Northwestern Ohio, and have been in Kansas since 1842. Population 200.
The Shawnees are from Missouri, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. They number 650. They are soon to be mixed with the Cherokees.
The Miamies came from Indiana. They number 95, and will soon remove south.
The Peorias, Kaskaskias, Weas, and Piankeshaws, numbering 200, and a majority have already gone south.
The whole number of Indians in Kansas is 9,237, but very few will remain here. In the Indian country there are 54,658. In the whole country there are 378,577, counting the 75,000 in Alaska.
Col. Parker=s statement is very valuable. Of our Kaws he says: AThe attempts to educate them and induce them to engage in agriculture have proved failures.@ Of the Osages he says: AThey have often suffered for want of food.@ White men get all they want to eat and amass riches on these lands, and the fact that the Indians will not or cannot do it is a proof of their incapacity and worthlessness, and a sufficient reason for filling their places with civilized races who need the land and will make it into homes. Leavenworth Conservative.
[INFORMATION ABOUT THE TRAVELER NEWSPAPER.]
Arkansas City Traveler, January 26, 1876.
TO THE PUBLIC!
The "TRAVELER" and Its Claims!
For five years and more we have been publishing the TRAVELER at Arkansas City, dating from the 25th of August, 1870. The building in which the first papers were printed was, like the old "Arkansas Traveler," without windows or roof; and when it rained, the only dry spot was UNDER the BED.
The Arkansas, Walnut, Grouse, and Shawkaska Rivers were the favorite camping places of the Indians, and abode of wild animals. Sumner County was almost uninhabited, and Harper and Barbour almost unknown. A few settlers had "stopped" on Cedar and Grouse and many more were coming in to see. This was the beginning of Cowley County. Since then we have weekly chronicled the advancement of the new
By our frequent rambles through the county in search of news and new subscribers, every portion of it has become as familiar to us as the old home county "back East." From the flint range on the head of Grouse Creek to the deep steep banks of Bluff Creek, in Sumner County; and from the head to the mouth of the Walnut, the scenery is as well known as the picture on the wall. The early settlement of Cowley County is as a pleasant remembrance, and such as we yet expect to witness and enjoy, as it is yet
IN ITS INFANCY.
Think of it! Five years ago the first election of officers was held and the organization of the county completed. Now it has a population of 5,995 souls, 1,990 families, 26,648 acres of wheat, 40,355 acres of corn, 2,116 acres of orchards, and a total taxable property of $1,635,451. And this, too, in spite of drouth, grasshoppers and
What a future there is before us!
But we are wandering from our purpose. The object of this article is to present to all readers our claims to consideration, and to induce, if possible, every resident of the county to read, compare, and then subscribe for the paper. The foundation of a newspaper is in its circulation, and we want every man, woman, and child to be familiar with the TRAVELER. The terms are two dollars per year, one dollar for six months, fifty cents for three months, postage paid and mailed to your address. For every one year's subscription we give the companion pictures,
ATHE ARKANSAS TRAVELER@
ATHE TURN OF THE TUNE,@
Or one of each to every six month's subscriber. The "TRAVELER" is the
Oldest Paper in the Arkansas Valley,
in Kansas. It is strictly a Home Paper, devoting its space to communications from all parts of the county, and from residents temporarily absent in other States. It contains the
News of the Territory,
And of Indian Matters. Has the latest weekly Market Reports, Official County Proceedings, and everything of general interest to the reader. Among its correspondence, Lazette, Red Bud, Otto, Maple City, Silverdale, Dexter, Winfield, Nennescah, Oxford, Salt City, Guelph, South Haven, Caldwell, Kaw Agency, and several Ranches in the Territory, are represented. Every man should read his own county paper, and no family should be without one or more. The terms are reasonable, and within the reach of allCnot costing one-half the price of your tobacco, extracts, and "other necessaries."
Call on or address,
C. M. SCOTT, Publisher,
Arkansas City, Kansas.
Remittances can be made at any Post Office in the county.
Arkansas City Traveler, February 2, 1876. Front Page.
McEARLY'S RANCH, TEXAS, December 29, 1875.
Night before last we had a call from an unwelcome visitor. Old Boreas came screaming, shrieking down from the North, causing all our teeth to chatter and our bones to shake. These Northers usually last from one to two days, and as they are about all there is of winter, they are a terror to the natives, but to one accustomed to a more rigorous climate, they amount to very little. Up to this time we have had only two frosts, and no weather cold enough to form ice. I am told that snow is almost unknown here.
During three days of October, your old neighbors, the grasshoppers, passed over our country in immense numbers, going south. They came down in places as thickly as they were ever seen in Kansas, but remained only a few days, when they passed on. They must have spread over much of Mexico or the Gulf.
If your readers will look on a map of Texas at the region of country lying between the Nueces and the Rio Grande, they will be impressed with the almost entire absence of towns or villages. The bone of contention during the Mexican War, it has remained since that time a kind of dividing line between the United States and Mexico, its sparse population being made up of Americans and Mexicans in about equal numbers. The former are nearly all engaged in cattle and sheep raising; the latter, a thieving, trifling, treacherous people, like their Indian cousins, seem to be good for nothing but sheep herding, which is their chief occupation. They have the Indian liking for dogs, and dislike for anything good or noble. There are a few of the better class, of some wealth, who have settled on the American side, to escape the broils of Mexico, the land of revolutions. Everybody makes a living easily, the necessaries of life being cheap and easily obtained. The luxuries are unknown.
This is essentially a grazing country, its dryness of climate rendering it unfit for agriculture. It is rarely visited by sightseers, hence is but little known outside of its own limits. It is the principal sheep raising district in the State. Game is plenty. There are turkey, deer, antelope, peccaries, or musk hogs, wolves, bears, panthers, and leopards, while the "jack rabbit" attains a size and length of ear rarely equaled elsewhere. The leopard is a beautiful but fierce and powerful animal, and it is said to crush the skull of an ox with the same apparent ease that a cat does a mouse.
Twenty years ago wild horses roamed over this country in numbers as immense as the buffalo did lately over the plains west of your city. Their old trails are still to be seen, but the animals that made them, like the buffalo, are gradually disappearing--no one knows why nor how. They are now rarely seen in droves of more than a dozen or twenty. No animal is wilder or more difficult to approach, though the colts are sometimes captured, and make tough, serviceable horses, but are apt to retain the wild, restless nature of the mustang.
From time immemorial, Texas has been regarded as the home of outlaws and desperadoes. It is measurably true of this particular region. There are not many such, but these few, in connection with occasional inroads of marauding Mexicans and Indians from beyond the Rio Grande, render life and property somewhat unsafe.
Scott, tally one for Kansas. The soldier, when writing home to his girl, vowed that the further he got away from her, the better he liked her. I feel even so toward Kansas.
A. K. M.
Arkansas City Traveler, November 22, 1876. Front Page.
OUR INDIAN NEIGHBORS.
When we think how little the whites of the border care or think about their dusky brethren whose home is only across the line, and beyond the stone mounds Uncle Sam has placed along the southern portion of the State, as a warning to whites not to trespass, it is surprising that natural curiosity does not tempt them to make further inquiry. But then, when we remember that we lived "next door" to them for two long years, we are impressed that our curiosity was exhausted, burdened, and disgusted.
Few have any idea now of the number in the "Nation," and what they are doing. From the "Superintendents and Agents Report," furnished us through the courtesy of some of the new Agents, we find complete statistics of the number and their progress.
The following are the tribes and numbers.
The Potawotomies, Kickapoos, Chipewas, and Muncies, all under the agency of Mr. M. H. Newlin, number in round numbers, 1,000.
Quapaws, Peorias, Miamis, Ottawas, Wyandottes, Shawnees, Senecas, and Modocs, under H. W. Jones, as Agent, at Quapaws Agency, 1,300.
Cherokees, Creeks, Choctaws, Chickasaws, and Seminoles, at Union Agency, under S. W. Marston, number 54,000.
The Great and Little Osages under Mr. Cyrus Beede, number 2,700. The Kaws, who speak the same language as the Osages, are also in his charge, although they have a separate Agency. They number 500 souls.
The Pawnees located 60 miles southeast of this place, under charge of Wm. Burgess, number 2,000.
The Sac and Foxes of Mississippi, Absentee Shawnees, Mexican Kickapoos, Southern Cheyennes, Southern Arapahos, and Apaches are controlled by John D. Miles. They number 4,000.
The Wichita, Caddoes, and affiliated Bands, at the Wichita Agency, are under Agent A. C. Williams, formerly special Agent of the Kickapoos, near this place. They number 1,200.
The Kiowas, Comanches, and Apaches, are under J. M. Haworth, and number 3,000.
In all, there are 71,200 Indians in the Territory.
Among the Osages there are 1,397 males, 1,282 females.
Among the Kaws, 229 males, and 214 females.
Among the Pawnees, 866 males, and 1,160 females. The Pawnees usually half support themselves by labor.
174 Osages live in houses, and they sold $5,000 worth of robes last year.
The Kaws and Pawnees sold $590 worth each.
The Osages own 12,000 ponies, 100 mules, 600 head of cattle, and 1,500 head of hogs.
The Kaws own 300 ponies, 8 mules, 15 cattle, and 125 hogs.
The Pawnees have 600 ponies, 12 mules, and 15 head of cattle.
Some have been making rapid progress in education, and others farming, but the ratio is very small. Out of the 2,679 Osages, only 25 of them labor in civilized pursuits, 25 live by hunting, 244 wear citizen's clothes, 50 adults and 100 youths can read, and 15 of those have learned this year, during the nine months school. The school this year was maintained solely by their own funds, at a cost of $7,000 and a donation from Orthodox churches and private parties to the amount of $300. Where the children come to school, they are clothed and fed.
During the past year the Kaws have sawed 10,000 feet of lumber at their new mill, and 40 of them are now living in houses. 59 Kaws wear citizen's dress, and most all of them labor. They have cultivated 600 acres of land this year, and have 350 acres fenced. They raised 10,000 bushels of corn, 500 bushels of wheat, 150 bushels of beans, 800 bushels of potatoes, and put up 160 tons of hay. They employ one teacher almost constantly, and 20 adults and 24 youths can read; 18 have learned this year during the ten months school.
Of the Pawnees, 12 of them live in houses: three of which they built themselves, and nine that the Government built for them. 264 Pawnees wear citizen's dress, and one-half of them labor. During the last year they have cultivated 150 acres of land themselves, broke 20 additional acres, and fenced 280 acres. They raised 1,600 bushels of corn, 100 bushels of beans, 150 bushels of potatoes, and put up 100 tons of hay. 25 of the adults and 115 youths can read, and 15 learned during the last nine months of school.
Considering the lack of funds, and embarrassments they have had to undergo, the progress they have made is very commendable.
While we have but little hope and less faith, of the Agents being able to accomplish much in the way of civilization, yet we believe they are making strong and earnest efforts.
To any who have the time to spare, a trip to the Territory will not only be a rare treat, but a very profitable one, educationally considered.
Reports by C. M. Scott on Trips to Indian Territory.
Arkansas City Traveler, February 21 and 28, 1877. Front Page.
A JOURNEY TO THE INDIAN COUNTRY.
Fort Sill, Wichita, Cheyenne, Kiowa, and Comanche Agencies.
Wednesday, Jan. 24th, in company with Joseph H. Sherburne, we left Arkansas City at about noon and started for Fort Sill, in a light spring wagon; behind the team that so nearly caused the death of Mr. Hawkins, intending to reach Caldwell before sundown. The day was warm and pleasant, and roads in the very best condition. On our way we sped by Guelph, but stopped a few minutes at South Haven to converse with Col. Hunter and other friends. The road from South Haven to Caldwell is changed in many places since we first traveled over it, but is practically the same. On the west bank of Shoo Fly creek, J. W. Hamilton has erected a fine stone residence, two stories high, with windows and doors capped with cut stone, and generally improved his farm.
Arriving at Caldwell at about 8 p.m., we found the drive longer than we had anticipated, but yet we had scarcely noticed it, as the moon was shining brightly and the setting of the sun made but a slight difference. We were not long in hunting a hotel and our acquaintances, and soon found John Blair and J. H. Sain, with whom we spent most of the evening.
Thursday morning we left Caldwell, crossing Fall Creek one half mile south of the town, then Bluff Creek three-fourths of a mile farther on, then the head of Polecat, which was dry, where old Mr. Chisholm, the first man who ever drove cattle over the present trail, killed a number of skunks, thereby giving its name; then Cottonwood four miles from Polecat, then Bullwhacker, where Laflin's men had "stuck," then Pond Creek, where John Murphy is located at the stage stable.
derives its name from the pond of good water nearby. The stream is well timbered, and affords good shelter for stock. A short distance from Pond Creek, we crossed the Salt Fork, a muddy, brackish stream flowing through the Salt Plains, where a party of freighters encountered difficulty in crossing, and indulged in language more emphatic than polite. One and a half miles from the Salt Fork, we crossed a slough, then the Big Wild Horse, where a number of wild horses were seen by Chisholm when making the trail, and two miles further on the Little Wild Horse, then Sand Creek, Spring Branch, and Skeleton, where we stopped for the night at GILCHRIST=S RANCHE,
a double picket house made of logs buried three feet in the ground, and extending six feet from the surface and plastered up with mud. This ranche is 47 miles from Caldwell and 21 miles from Pond Creek. While stopping here we were well entertained by Burt Giffin, who had charge of the place, while Mr. Gilchrist was absent hunting ponies. It was on this creek that two Mexicans were killed by men from Kansas, for murdering a herder in the State. Three miles from Skeleton Creek is Boggy Springs, and seven miles further, Hackberry Creek, where a man answering the description of Mrs. Beecher's "Uncle Tom," makes his home. On this creek the bones of an Osage Indian lies unburied, the body since having been food for the coyotes. It is on the head of Hackberry Creek, where the road from Arkansas City intercepts the Ft. Sill trail, 90 miles from Arkansas City. Sixteen miles from Skeleton Creek is Buffalo Springs, where there is always water. Then comes Bull Foot's Springs, 22 miles from Skeleton, and six miles further Little Turkey, then Dan Jones' ranche on Red Fork or Cimarron River.
At Buffalo Springs, or what was formerly known as Mosier's ranche,
A SAD REMBRANCE
was brought to our recollection. On the left hand side and only a few feet from the road is a single mound with a rude board for a tombstone, with the following inscription cut on it.
E. Cook. Killed by Indians. July 3, 1874.
Underneath the loose earth are the remains of three cherished sons, whose parents are yet in doubt as to their existence, although it is believed they have learned of their terrible and cruel massacre, by the Cheyennes, which occurred on the road not very distant from where they lie, while freighting from Wichita to the Agencies. A mile or more from them, in the center of the road is the grave of Pat Hennessy, whose bones were buried where he fell, after his body had been tied to a wagon wheel and burned. The details of this horrible proceeding is too fresh in the minds of all our readers to recite at this writing, save that they were surprised and all shot except poor Pat Hennessy, who was doomed to meet a greater suffering.
All along the route we saw thousands of prairie dogs and were scarcely out of sight of their towns, of which were several miles in length and covering more than 1,000 acres in extent.
Towards the close of the afternoon, a large gray wolf met us in the road and did not seem disposed to stand aside until we gave him the contents of one barrel of our shot gun at a distance of about 20 yards, knocking him completely over. Soon after another came near and Joe tried a Sharp's rifle on him. He evidently struck him on the belly as the animal jumped fully five feet in the air and ran like a race horse for some distance. A skunk was the next animal to court our acquaintance, and we demolished his perfume factory with a load from our pistol, followed by a dose of shot. With nothing else to call our attention, we drove till we came to the well known and hospitable ranche of our fellow townsman,
situated 13 miles from the Red Fork River in a beautiful bottom with pleasant surroundings. As we drove up, we could not help noticing the neatness of the premises. Little prairie dogs made their houses a few feet from his door, while near the timber, a half mile distant, a flock of wild turkeys were quietly feeding, and in the jack oaks nearby is the favorite resort of deer and other game. The place is one we have frequently heard described, or dreamed of in our imagination, but never before realized.
At the door we were met by Dan, whose countenance showed an agreeable surprise, when we inquired if the landlord was in. After a short look about the ranche, which is the neatest on the entire route, we started in pursuit of the turkeys we had seen, and within fifteen minutes saw our companion lower his gun, and in another second one of the noble birds was fluttering on its back. For fear we would not be lucky enough to secure our game, Dan started out in an opposite direction; and before our return, had two killed and one almost ready for the oven. We were so well entertained at the ranche that we stayed half of the next day before going further, and regretted then that we were compelled to go on.
While here we learned the story of the killing of the men by Charley Lyons was not correct, as Mr. Lyons had been at Caldwell all the time the killing was said to have been done. We also learned that the Osages had caught and stripped a twelve-year-old boy, by the name of Miller, during the first snow, and after taking his pony, turned him out in the storm to die. The boy then stole a pony from them, rode to a cattle camp, and thus saved his life.
While the Sac and Fox Indians were hunting on the Red Fork, they killed a monstrous black bear a few miles north of the ranche. The Pawnees had visited the place and left the day before we arrived, having killed a number of deer and wild turkeys. They were on their way west to the buffalo ground, 150 miles distant. A short time before the Indians came, a party had been down from Caldwell, and in five days had killed over 200 turkeys.
The stage station of T. P. Williamson, of Independence, Missouri, who with Vance & Co., have the mail contract from Caldwell to Fort Sill, is located at Jones' ranche. It is a tri-weekly mail, running four horses as far as Cheyenne, and a buckboard from thence to Sill and the Kiowa and Comanche Agency. Jones' ranche is eighty miles from Caldwell, thirty miles from Cheyenne Agency, or Fort Reno. From the Cheyenne Agency to the Wichita Agency is forty-five miles, and from the Wichita to Fort Sill, or the Kiowa and Comanche Agency, thirty miles.
The first creek crossed after leaving the Red Fork or Cimarron, 82 miles, is Kingfisher, then Caddo Springs, and four miles beyond, the North Fork of Canadian, on which the Cheyenne Agency is located on the north bank, and Fort Reno, or Darlington, a mile beyond, on the south side.
We arrived at CHEYENNE AGENCY
after dark, and did not have an opportunity of visiting the school and public buildings. At the office we met Agent Miles and spent a few minutes in pleasant conversation, after which we expressed a desire to visit the camp of the Cheyennes where the Indians were dancing.
We were furnished a guide and soon found our way to the inside of a lodge where we were introduced to BULL BEAR,
a prominent chief, and Big Horse, a "soldier chief." A delegation of Northern Cheyennes and Sioux lately visited the camp of Bull Bear to induce him to go North and fight the whites, but the old chief wisely concluded he had enough war after the troubles of 1874, and told them to go back and not to come to him again on such an errand.
After smoking the pipe of peace with them, we were conducted to the lodge where they were dancing. A circle of men and women had formed around the little fire in the center of the lodge, and when the drum began its doleful sound, the squaws sang and all moved around, jumping stiff legged. After a few minutes the din ceased and all were seated. Then at the sound of the drum, which was made of raw hide stretched over a hoop, all jumped up again. This time it was a squaw dance, and as near as we could judge "ladies' choice," as two young girls would look around until they found one of their favored ones, when they would take him by the hand, pull him up, and with one hold of each arm jump up and down, then reverse, and continue jumping.
While we were quietly enjoying the scene, our surprise can better be imagined than described when our companion was taken by the hand and pulled up, being the favored choice of Minnehaha ("Laughing Water"), as beautiful an Indian squaw as it has been our good fortune to have seen. She is the daughter of a chief, and won some notoriety by carrying away the first premium for horseback riding at the Muscogee Fair last fall. Our companion at first declined, but finally consented, remarking that we had come for fun and he was not to be bluffed. The sight was one we shall not soon forget. In the midst of a group of red faces, the beaming countenance of our weather-beaten friend could be seen, as he hopped up and down like a puppet, enjoying the exercise full as well as any of the nomads. At the conclusion of his freaks, the Indians all laughed loud and applauded, seeming well pleased.
Another set was formed and as the music arose, our guide informed us: "They are going for you this time." We promptly declined, but he informed us they would make us, when we considered discretion the better part of valor and worked our way out of the lodge as quick as possible.
Among the Cheyennes we saw many noted chiefs and warriors. Noticing a number of scars on the left arm of Bull Bear, we inquired how he came by them, and learned that he had cut them himself to tally the number of beings he had killed. There were twenty-eight in all. Some, he informed us through our interpreter, he killed with his bow and arrows; others he ran through with his spear, and some he shot.
On the opposite side of the lodge was a very old woman who had been very sick, but was recovering as she had offered a sacrifice by cutting the end of her little finger off at the first joint.
All through the camp, dogs of almost every description were to be seen from a lap dog to the largest Newfoundland. Many of them were crossed with the wolf, as is generally the case with Indian dogs.
Early in the morning of Sunday, the 28th, we were on our way to
48 miles distant, over the roughest and most sandy road along the entire route. After crossing the North Fork, we came to the main Canadian twelve miles below, then Spring Creek, eight miles further, then Stinking Creek, twenty-three miles from Cheyenne, then another Spring Creek, then Sugar Creek, five miles from Wichita Agency.
The Canadian is a wide, sandy, muddy, and treacherous stream, but was easily crossed as the water was low. In crossing any of the large streams of the west, it is not safe to stop a minute or the vehicle will settle so completely in the quick sand as to make it impossible to withdraw it. Knowing this we kept our team steadily moving, having taken the precaution to water our horses before entering it. Some of the freighters in crossing this stream had to hitch on to the hind end of their wagon and withdraw it, as they stopped for a minute and stuck in the sand. Sugar Creek, near the Wichita Agency, derives its name from the sugar maples that grow near its head.
We arrived at Wichita Agency at four o'clock, p.m., and were met at the Agent's office by J. A. Stafford and Mr. Spray, who showed us into the house, where we met Mrs. Williams and her daughters, Mrs. Stafford, and others, who cordially received us as old acquaintances. We had not long to wait when Mr. Williams came in, whom we were exceedingly glad to meet. Our descent upon them was somewhat surprising and all the more enjoyable.
We were so well treated and entertained at Mr. Williams' that we did not leave until Tuesday following, and even then, with regrets. While there we visited the school under charge of Henry Dolls and brother, and were astonished at the rapid progress made among the Indian children. They repeated the multiplication table from two times one are two, to twelve times twelve are 144, with rapidity, and read, spelled, and sang readily. Mr. Dolls is an Englishman by birth and has the reputation of being one of the best Indian educators in the Territory.
In his school thirteen different tribes are represented, as follows: Wichita, Caddos, Utes, Comanches, Creeks, Kechis, To-wak-o-nies [Tawakonis], Delawares, Wacos, Cherokees, Seminoles, Shawnees, and Chickasaws. All learn fast, considering their circumstances and prejudices.
As we entered the school, the teacher was endeavoring to convince the younger ones that the earth was round, which seemed to be received as a preposterous idea, when they could look out the window and see it was flat. There were eighty-three pupils in the room, and the roll showed a list of more than one hundred, but as they are permitted to go to their camps on Sunday, many had not yet come in.
When supper was called, we went to the dining room to see them eat, and observed all had remarkable appetities. Before eating, however, they were told to ask God's blessing, which they did in a brief manner. After supper they repeated the Lord's prayer at the top of their voices, leading us to think they would all make good Methodists some day. From the matron we learned that for breakfast they were allowedCbread, meat, gravy, rice, beans, and water to drink. For supperCmush and milk, coffee, sugar, and water.
They drink their coffee without milk, and on Sunday are given pie and cake. As a conse-quence of this, it is a rare case to have any sickness on Sunday, as it is generally postponed until the next day.
Boys are detailed to cut the wood, carry water, and sweep the schoolhouse, while the girls wash the dishes, scrub the floor, and make the beds. Af first the boys are inclined to the idea that the girls should do all the work as they have to in camp, but the idea is soon removed.
The children adorn themselves with every variety of jewelry that can be obtained, and frequently make their own earrings, bracelets, and breastplates. On one we could not help noticing were large key checks, as we at first thought, but examination proved it to be some city dog check, as the inscription read "No. 74, Dog Tax Paid." Taking a thorough look at the owner of the metal, we concluded she was properly labeled.
Among the number before us was one of bright countenance and lighter complexion than the rest, which caused us to call the attention of Agent Williams to her, when he informed us she claimed a former Agent as her father. Others whom we supposed were white children, were pointed out as the results of renegade whites among the Indians. The Arapahos, Wichitas, Caddos, and some other tribes are very licentious, and it is seldom a virtuous woman is found among them. But among the Cheyennes, a majority are chaste.
It is a familiar sight on the border to see the letters "U. S. I. D." prominently displayed, but here we see it everywhere: on the backs of Indians, on wagons, on boxes, bags, letters,
and envelopes. The Agent claims it signifies United States Indian Department, but it is generally recognized as "Uncle Sam's Idle Dollar."
Noticing a number of wagons coming from the south on the evening of our arrival, we went to where they were camped and found them to be Arkansas City freighters on their return from Fort Sill, namely: E. D. Bowen, A. A. Davis, R. B. Scott, Gardner Mott, Johnny Mott, Brown, Provose, Thompson, Dilworth, Belknap, and Campbell. The latter three were on their way down. After leaving the last TRAVELER and telling all we could think of, we left them for the night.
Wichita Agency is in township 7, range 10, six miles north of the 35th parallel, and 16 miles west of the 98th meridian, on the Washita River; 69 miles west of Arkansas City and 132 miles south. A. C. Williams, formerly Agent of the Kickapoos and a resident of this place, is the Agent, and has under his charge seven distinct tribes, as follows: Caddos, Wichita, Comanches, Towakonies, Kechia, Wacos, and Delawares.
numbering 500, were formerly residents of Louisiana, and years since treated with the United States to leave this country, never to return. They settled in Mexico, and when Texas was annexed to the United States, they came into the Union with it. They are a very industrious class, and are rapidly embracing the white man's ways. Many of them are farming, and 21 were building houses. Agent Williams, through an unaccountable influence, has induced a mania for house building among them, and during our stay they were constantly clamoring to have them builtCoffering to trade ponies, robes, or almost anything in their possession.
Wah-loo-pe is chief of the Caddos, and is named after a river in Mexico.
are the next largest band, numbering 200. They are the original owners of the land in which they now live, and have consequently lived here a long time. The Wichita mountains of this vicinity are named after them, as is Wichita, Kansas, where they were camped during the war. They are not as far advanced in civilization as the Caddos, but are gradually improving. Some three years ago the Osages killed their chief, I-sad-a-wa, and whle they do not make war against them, they cannot forget it. A settlement was made by the Osages paying them $1,500, which gained their forgiveness until a good opportunity offers for them to revenge it. Is-o-da-co is their present chief.
The Towakonies, Wacos, and Wichitas speak the same language, while the Cheyennes, Arapahos, Kiowas, Comanches, and all the Plains Indians understand one another by signs similar to those used by deaf and dumb persons.
The Wichitas, Towakonies, and Kechis live in houses made from poles covered with dried grass, resembling a large bee hive or hay stack.
The Comanches live in tents made of buffalo robes.
Most Plains Indians wear robes, while the more civilized wear blankets.
under charge of Agent Williams, number 168. They were formerly from Texas, and the mountains of Mexico. Tush-ha-wa, head chief of the tribe, is a very old man, and has figured in a number of treaties with the United States. His name means "bright handle." At request of the Agent, he built a house of his own, and is living in it as an example for his tribe to follow. The Comanche Indians have been regarded as among the worse, most desperate, and murderous tribes in America, only seconded by the Cheyennes, Apaches, and Kiowas.
In the camp of the tribe under Agent Williams is a Mexican woman, who was taken prisoner in Mexico fifteen years ago, and who is now at the Agent's house awaiting the Government to return her.
The Towakonies number 100 in all. They used to inhabit the Red River country. Ne-as-to is their chief.
The Kechis have but 92 individuals in their tribe, which used to be counted by the thousands. They have always been residents of this section, and have the Kechie hills named from them. To-wah-hum-ta is their chief.
The Wacos, formerly of Texas, number but 70. "Buffalo Good" is their chief. He told us he had been a wild, bad Indian, but was now on the white man's road, and had corn in his crib and stock on the prairies.
There are 83 of the Delaware tribe, and the history of the "big water" is a familiar story with them, as their forefathers at one time inhabited what is now the State of Delaware.
Captain Black Beaver is chief of the Delawares. During the war he figured in a number of important matters. From "A Quaker Among Indians," by Thomas Battey, we quote the following history of this remarkable man. To the author of the above work, we are also indebted for many ideas during our stay at the Kiowa and Comanche Agency.
"Captain Black Beaver was guide to Captain Marcy in his explorations in the West, also to Audubon, the naturalist. He has a large farm under cultivation, and lives in a very comfortable manner, having good, substantial, frame buildings. He commenced life as a wild Indian trapper until, becoming familiar with almost all the unexplored regions of the west, and being a remarkably truthful and reliable man, he was much sought after as a guide, and accompanied several expeditions in that capacity. His life has been one of bold adventure, fraught with many interesting incidents, which, if properly written out, would form an interesting and entertaining volume."
At Wichita Agency thirty head of cattle per week, and 2,205 pounds of flour are issued weekly, being only half rations. Captain Leach and Major Lannigan have the beef contract, and A. A. Newman is the contractor for flour.
The Wichitas and Caddos smoke cigarettes made of the strongest chewing tobacco, furnished them by the Government, and very seldom use a pipe, as most Indians do. The women wear balmoral skirts for dresses, and never lace, often complaining that the waists of the skirts are made too small.
The Wichita Agency is beautifully located on a high knoll overlooking the beautiful Washita bottom, where Gen. Davidson had the conflict with the Comanches and Kiowas in 1874.
The Agency has been well favored with permanent improvements. Among them the Agent's house and office, school building, saw mill, etc.
Another peculiar feature at this Agency was the number of negroes that could not speak English.
In the afternoon of Monday, Mr. Stafford tendered us a ride behind his sparkling bays to a camp a few miles north. We accepted and were well paid for the visit. Almost every lodge had a squaw in front of it tanning robes. As we walked through the camp the little children ran and screamed at the sight of strange white men, and the dogs showed by their barking that they were not accustomed to white intruders.
Tuesday morning we left Wichita Agency for Fort Sill. After we had traveled about five miles, we met George Shearer, Jerome Hilton, Charles Peters, and E. Worther, and at noon we came to where a number more were camped for dinner, on Killpecker Creek, to wit: Frank Hutchinson, A. W. Patterson, Walt Dolby, H. S. Adams, Hank Nelson, Ross Merrick, Cass Endicott, Sam Endicott, John Tolles, Buck Wintin, Frank Wintin, Jack Martin, Frank Johnson, Wagstaff, Jim Burrell, and Benj. Harberson. Hank Nelson had met with an accident and had his arm in a sling, having been thrown from his wagon while trying to get ahead of someone. We were the invited guests of Ross Merrick, and partook readily of his "sow belly," biscuit, and what the boys called "bovine" gravy. The rain fell in chunks while we were at dinner, and the meal was stowed away as soon as possible.
After dinner we moved along and before long met M. E. Garner, Poke Stevens, Daniel Hunt, Geo. Christy, Mr. Stevens, Dan Fegans, Ab. Christy, O. J. Palmer, Andrew Meisner, J. Clark, D. Pendergrass, and Joe Garner, on their way back from Sill.
Not a great distance from the Fort, we met our friend, Capt. Leach, and renewed acquaintances.
We reached FORT SILL
about four o'clock, but did not stop until we drove to the Agency, a mile and an eighth below, where we met Agent James M. Haworth, Thomas Battey, Frank Moltby, and others, and were welcome.
We were agreeably disappointed in the Agent, as we expected to find him a down-easter, harsh in manner, and as unsocial as a saw log. Instead, we found him to be a thorough Kansan: affable, agreeable, and very cordial. He hails from Olathe, Kansas, but was formerly from Hamilton county, Ohio. Under his charge are the three wildest tribes in the Indian Territory and the west, and it is gratifying to see what influence and control he has over them.
Within his jurisdiction are 1,000 Kiowas, 1,500 Comanches, and 300 Apatches [Apaches].
Scott gave the Indian/White name for some of the Indians:
Ash-tie-la: meaning "Feather Head."
Gas-ta-a-ka: meaning "Running Bear."
Que-a-pate: meaning "Trotting Wolf."
Odo-pate: meaning "Red Otter."
Hide seek: meaning "Crow Lance."
While at the Agency we met most of the prominent chiefs, amoung them "Poor Buffalo," "Feather Head, "Running Bear," "Trotting Wolf," "Red Otter," "Crow Lance," and Stumbling Bear, Zebeil, White Man, and Little Robe. The Indian names of the last four we did not get.
"Standing Bear" is a very large and powerful man, weighing over 300 pounds, and standing nearly six feet. He came to the Agency on Thursday (issuing day) in a spring wagon. Agent Haworth informed us that there were still larger men in the tribe, and thought there was one that would weigh over 400 pounds.
Most of the Indians came in on issuing day to receive their rations, and afforded us a good opportunity to see them. Five barrels of sugar, with coffee, flour, and crackers in proportion are issued weekly. Then besides their rations they receive annuity goods to the amount of $25,000 during the year.
The amount of rations allowed to each individual per day is as follows; but as they draw it weekly, they receive seven times the quantity mentioned at one time.
Three pounds of beef gross weight.
1/2 pound of flour.
3/4 of an ounce of coffee.
1-1/4 ounces of sugar.
1/6 of an ounce each of salt and soap.
1/12 of an ounce of tobacco.
3/4 of a pound of bacon.
Crackers, or hard bread as it is generally called, is issued in lieu of flour.
The morning of "issue day" was cold and damp, and yet most of the men, women, and children were with nothing on their feet; and one child, old enough to walk, had nothing but a thin calico shirt on, and yet they did not complain of the cold. Many suffer from rheumatism and pneumonia in consequence.
Among the Kiowas and Comanches are men who have taken the lives of many, and until their head chiefs were captured and sent to St. Augustine, Florida, and confined as prisoners in Texas, they openly boasted of their exploits and atrocities.
The Plains Indians all wear their hair long, never cutting it except in mourning for the dead. Many of them pride themselves in keeping it well arranged, but it is generally allowed to hang loosely over their shoulders.
There are many peculiar traditions among them. A few of which we give below, as received from Mr. Battey, who has spent years among them.
"One of the party asked the chief what the Kiowas thought of the moon. He replied, 'It is the Great White Man;' then, looking for a cluster of stars, which he did not succeed in pointing out to us, he stated to have the outline of a man, and to be the Great Kiowa. He subsequently pointed out to me the Pleiades, with some of the surrounding stars, as this cluster.
"In reply to the question, 'What becomes of us when we die?' he answered that he did not know what became of white people, as they were not made by the same being that made the Indians. But when Kiowas die, the spirit travels a great way toward the sunset, and crossing a high mountain ridge, it comes at length to a wide water, which it has to cross. Upon arriving at the opposite shore, it is met by former loved friends, who have gone before to this happy land, and who now rejoice to meet it again. There the game is always fat and plenty, the grass is always green, the horses large, swift, and beautiful. The inhabitants are never sick, nor feel pain. Parting and tears are un-knownCjoy fills every heart. A high mountain stands near the boundaries of this land, and watchers are set upon it, who are continually looking along the road leading from this country, watching for the spirits of the dying and newly deadCwhether they die naturally, in battle, or by accident; and when they discover any coming along the road, they immediately call to the friends of the coming spirits, who go forth with rejoicings to meet them, and conduct them to the lodges they have prepared for them."
Dangerous Eagle was again compelled to remain behind on account of his wife's illness, which continued for several days before she expired. Before leaving, I saw this woman engaged in digging her grave. This led me to fear that the patience of her husband was so nearly exhausted by his repeated detentions on her account, that violent means would be resorted to if she did not soon die. I have known instances among these peopleCthough not among KiowasCof men becoming discouraged, and killing their wives with their own hands, when they have been for some time sick, and their medicine (jugglery) failing to effect a cure. Indeed, I know a Comanche chief who cut the throat of his wife for that reason. She was sick a long time and their medicine did not cure her; so, to avoid the inconvenience of caring for a sick wife, who was not able to care for herself, after making 'medicine or preparation,' to fit her for a happy reception in the unknown land of spirits, he took her life, though mourning her untimely death. Such deeds are rare among them, but are still sometimes practiced, they setting but small value upon human life, and sick or very aged people are a great hinderance to their wild, roving, unsettled way of life.
The Caddos claim their fathers first spring up out of the ground. The Comanches' idea is that they were born in a cave, and that the Indians and buffalo were enemies, with the power in favor of the buffalo, until the Great Spirit sent a messenger informing them that they should conquer. They went forth with the messenger, who killed a deer, took the sinews from it, and strung a bow, and from a piece of flint made an arrowhead, and the first time the buffalo attacked them, it was killed.
SON OF GOD.
The Apatches claim their father was the son of God and lived among the clouds with the Almighty. One day as their father was descending to the earth on a spider web, the Great Spirit sent a bolt of lightning and cut him in two; and out of one half of their Father, women grew, and children multiplied. The place of this remarkable occurrence is located across the "big water" in the Northwest, where the Indians crossed on the ice and came to this country.
All the traditions of the Apatches do prove that they came from the Northwest, and some even have a knowledge of Behring's Straight, where they claim their forefathers crossed. It is well established the Apatches have inhabited the mountains for more than a century; and it is the opinion of many that they are a part of the lost tribes of Israel, and the original pilgrims of this hemisphere.
We made it a point to visit the school of this Agency, also, and were well paid for the visit. The building is 13 miles from the Agent's house, and the school is conducted by Mr. A. J. Standing, a teacher of many years' experience among them. He had 62 pupils in the school, who were boarded, clothed, and cared for under his direction.
Mr. Standing took great interest in showing the advancement they had made while with him, and presented us with a number of specimens of writing and drawing, executed by the boys and girls.
With the older and younger members of the tribe, Agent Haworth seemed to be a favorite, and we were amused with the earnestness with which they examined the gray hairs of his beard to see if he would live long with them. They all know him as "Red Beard," the agent of Washington.
A very valuable article among them is the tooth of an elk. As most elks have no teeth, and never more than two, they are prized very highly, two teeth being worth one mule. We noticed a little girl, the daughter of a chief, who wore a sack on which were sewn 27 teeth, worth about $1,300, and were informed that another had one worth $2,100 according to their estimated value. A herd of thirty elk roam within forty miles of the Agency, but are rarely killed, owing to their remarkable instinct of avoiding their enemies.
On the road from the Cheyenne to the Wichita Agency, we saw 60 miles distant, with the naked eye, the elevated dome of Mount Scott, rising majestically above the horizon, surrounded by Mounts Sheridan and Medicine Bluff.
The first house after crossing the Canadian is that of George Washington's, a full blood Indian of considerable reputation, and formerly chief of the Caddos, of which tribe he is a member. During the war he fought against the Union Indians in the cause of the rebellion.
"In the summer of 1871, Caddo George, having had a field made, raised some corn to sell. He accordingly went to Shirley, the trader, and contracted his corn, and was furnished with a corn-sheller to shell it, and sacks to put it in. In due time the corn was delivered, which, from some cause, weighed unusually heavy. George, however, was paid in goods, at a heavy price, corresponding with the weight of the corn.
"When the sacks were emptiedCwhich was not done for several daysCa large stone was found in the middle of each sack, fully accounting for the great weight of the corn. George was called to an account by the trader, to whom he acknowledged that he had put the stones in the sacks.
"George stated that, having started on the white man's road, he thought it was a pretty good road, and was anxious to follow it up. He accordingly watched the white men, in order to learn it well. The trader had cheated him a great deal, and he thought it was part of the white man's road, and he would try and cheat him just a little. The logic was good, and George had been paid, the trader could recover nothing, and he had to consider the explanation satisfactory."
Among other good jokes told of George is that of an individual with whom he had traded horses and lost about $7.50, who stopped with him for dinner one day. After partaking of a hearty meal, he asked George what was his bill, when George replied in stuttering tones:
"Una, una, seven dollars una fifty cent."
"My G___d! For dinner?"
"Una, una, yes. You cheat me some day."
It don't do to refuse to pay board bills in that country, so the traveler had to come down with that amount.
The Kiowas are an exceedingly lively class of Indians, and are happy as long as they have plenty to eat. They relish quantity more than quality, and devour almost anything that a hog would eat, with great satisfaction. We witnessed the killing of a cow for beef. After shooting it a half dozen times in the shoulders and sides, the animal fell, and was soon divested of its hide. The meat was then cut from the bones, and part of the entrails saved. An unborn calf was cut open and its liver eaten raw while yet steaming with life.
Mothers picking and eating the insects from their children's heads, and other instances of filth unparalleled could be seen almost any time in the camps, and yet these Indians are far superior in manliness than those adjoining or near the settlements.
The wilder tribes are more honorable in war, and more faithful to promises than many of those nearer civilization. The language of the Kiowas cannot be interpreted; and in order to make their wants known, they talk Comanche, which is regarded as the predominent and standard language of the western portion of the Territory. Many speak Spanish, and all know the answer: "No savey,"C(don't understand), so commonly used in this country by the Chinese. "Wano," is good, and "chuckaway," something to eat. Many of the whites have abbreviated the word, and call it "chuck." All names of individuals have a meaning, and when anyone distinguishes him or herself, they are given a new name. "Ese-tike" is one of very peculiar meaning. "Ese"Cwolf, and "tike,"Ctail.
They call Sunday the white man's medicine day. To make medicine with them is to worship or call on Deity for assistance. They do not believe in future punishment, but are confident that all Indians go to Heaven, or the happy hunting ground, as they term it. They never speak the name of the dead, and are believers in spiritualism.
Among the Comanches is a man, who they claim performs miracles equal to those of our Saviour.
The young medicine man makes bold pretensions. He claims that he has raised the dead to life. He is reported to have raised from his stomach nearly a wagonload of cartridges at one time, in the presence of several Comanches. He then swallowed them again, informing the Comanches that they need not fear the expenditure of ammunition in carrying on a war against the whites, as he can supply all their needs in that line. He can make medicine which will render it impossible for a Comanche to be killed, even though he stands just before the muzzles of the white man's guns. He ascends above the clouds far beyond the sunCthe home of the Great Spirit, with whom he has often conversed.
He has done these things in open daylight, in the presence of many Comanches, remaining in the sky overnight, and coming back next day; he has been known to do this four times. In short, he has power to control the elements, to send wind, lightning, thunder, rain, and hail upon his enemies, and in no respect is he inferior to the Great Spirit.
The main body of the Comanches believe all this, and are afraid to disobey him for fear of his medicine if they offend him. Horseback, who has hitherto been friendly, brought in and left his ambulance with the agent, and gone to the great medicine council. Some few are bold enough to brave his medicine, and remain near the Agency. What the result will be it is impossible to forecast; but in all probability, the Comanches will be led by him wheresoever he sees fit. It is seriously to be feared that he will lead them to destruction, in which many others may become involved.
How this bold pretender succeeds in deluding the minds of this people may be understood from the following: It is given out that at a certain time he will visit the sun, the dwelling place of the Great Spirit. A number of prominent persons are in attendance as witnesses. He withdraws himself a short diistance from them, charging them to look directly at the sun until he speaks to them, then to let their eyes slowly fall to the place where he is standing; as they do this, they will see dark bodies descend to receive him, with which he will ascend.
His directions being complied with, the dark objects descend to him, and being blinded by their continued gaze upon the orb of light, he bids them slowly raise their eyes, and the dark objects arise, while he conveys himself away, and keeps concealed until the time appointed for his return. These men, thoroughly deluded, believe and report that they saw him ascend to the sun.
While at the different Agencies, our resident minister, Rev. Fleming, who made a tour similar to our own through the Territory, with Mr. O. P. Houghton, some time since, was highly spoken of and requests made that he should repeat his visit.
Corn at the Wichita Agency retails at 40 cents per bushel. Flour retails at $6 to $8 per 100 pounds. Hay by contracts, $7 per ton. Apples sixty cents per dozen. Ponies from $20 to $40 each.
Fort Sill is a military post of some importance, and frequently numbers 1,000 inhabitants. The buildings are built of stone in a very substantial manner, and would afford strong defense against an attack. There is a store, one hotel, one photograph gallery, one saloon and billiard hall, a barber shop, several laundries, besides a number of officers' residences and soldiers' quarters. A telegraph line extends to Jackborro, Texas, and while they are a long ways from civilization, they enjoy many advantages. Every two or three weeks, the soldiers give an entertainment of a theatrical nature, and dull time is driven away by the sports of horse racing and hunting game. The location is good, healthy, and very pleasant. They have a tri-weekly mail from Caddo, on the M. K. & T. Railway, and a tri-weekly from Wichita, Kansas. A new contract has been agreed upon by which the time required from Wichita to Sill is but forty-eight hours. The fare by stage between Caldwell and Sill is $20. From Caldwell to Cheyenne Agency $15. To Wichita Agency $18.
After remaining eight days at the Kiowa and Comanche Agency, we turned our faces homeward and drove about five miles, when we met a pack mule heavily loaded, with a white canvass over his load, making it appear as large as a small-sized elephant. Before we could give our horses an introduction to the harmless beast, they reared, plunged, and finally whirled round and started to run. As they wheeled, the pole of the wagon snapped off and the vehicle almost upset. We held on like grim death to a dying nigger, and by the timely assistance of our companion, were prevented from being dragged over the dashboard. The animals at last subsided and we crawled out to take an invoice of damages.
Finding we could not proceed, we straddled one horse, and leading the other, returned to the Agency after a wagon to draw ours in with. Agent Haworth, as usual, tendered his assistance, and before night Wm. Wikes, the carpenter, and David McBride, the blacksmith, had our vehicle ready to proceed with. The next morning we started again, avoiding every-thing in the shape of pack mules, and made a pleasant drive back to the Wichita Agency, where we met Theodore Moore, Howard, and Simms, going to Sill, and Jack Seaman, McCoy, and Hank Reed, just starting.
At ten o'clock the next day, we were on our road again and drove to George Washington's and stopped for the night. Bright and early the morning of the next day, we were again in our wagon, and reached Cheyenne Agency before noon, where we were entertained by Agent Miles for dinner.
Mr. Miles was in the height of enjoyment, as he had but recently been the recipient of a ten pound boy. (Babies weight two pounds more in the Territory than in this vicinity.) Before leaving we visited the school building, but did not have the opportunity of seeing the school in session as it was Saturday, and the children had gone home. They have 114 pupils enrolled. The school house is a very clean, and in a commodious building, well heated and ventilated. Mr. Miles is a thorough businessman and good financier. He has recommended to the Department that the Indians be awarded the contract for transporting their own goods, and has a bill before Congress to that effect.
Lee & Reynolds, at this Agency, will buy 10,000 buffalo hides of the white hunters this winter and hire the Indians to tan them, paying $3 for the tanning of each robe. A squaw can tan four a week.
The plan is a good one and meets the hearty approval of the Agent, as it will net them $30,000.
We drove from Cheyenne Agency to Jones' ranche during the remainder of the day, overtaking L. C. Norton, R. B. Scott, B. Hyde, and Coffey at the Cimarron. After supper we took a turkey hunt by star light, but after wandering a distance of twelve miles and seeing but one bird, we returned to the ranche at 1 o'clock pretty well fatigued.
The next morning by daylight we were on our way again, and drove to Uncle Tom's cabin by twelve, and prepared to take dinner, when to our sorrow, our bread and cake had all moulded during our long stay at Sill, and as we had managed to reach a ranch each meal time, we had not noticed it. What was to be done? Ninety miles from nowhere, no chuck, nothing to make any; and no friends. With a face as long as an ordinary bootjack, we implored Uncle Tom to bake us two loaves of bread, promising good pay. He did it in just an hour, and we were not long in starting again. Uncle Tom lives on Long BranchCso called from the fact it takes so long to find it.
We had proceeded but a few miles from our dining place when a fearful storm arose, accompanied by rain. Being anxious to get home, we kept on until our overcoats were soaked with water. A cold north wind with hail and snow then set in, and our faces were beaten blue with hail stones, and coats frozen on our backs, before we reached timber and a good camping place.
In camp we soon had a good fire, dried our clothes, and made our bed in the wagon, and were soon warm and fast asleep, notwithstanding we had been told that the Endicott boys had been murdered and scalped by Indians a few days before, near the same place. We were then in the treacherous Osage country, and used discretion accordingly, although we had no apprehensions of trouble.
The next day was equally cold, but the snow was not falling so fast. After a tedious drive of only 35 miles over a muddy road, we arrived home in time for supper, having eaten the last of our supplies early in the morning.
All in all, the trip was an enjoyable one, as well as profitable in the way of experience; and one that we shall be glad to repeat at no distant day. To parties who have never made a trip through a wild, unbroken prairie country, it would be relished beyond comparison. Early in the spring, after the grass is well started, or in the fall before cold weather, would be the best time to go.
Request for bids on supplying goods to Indians....
Winfield Courier, February 9, 1882.
The contracts for Indian supplies such as flour, bacon, and other products of Kansas and the west have heretofore been let in New York and as a consequence to eastern contractors who have sublet them to our local producers, dealers, and contractors, making large profits thereon. Congressman Ryan has been making efforts to change all this so that the contracts shall be let in the midst of our producers and give them a chance to deal directly with the government and saving the percent paid to eastern professional contractors. He has got the attention of the contract office and we publish on the first page one of his letters on this subject.
The following correspondence between Hon. Thomas Ryan, member of congress from the Topeka, Kansas, district and Hon. Hiram Price, commissioner of Indian affairs, in reference to the future purchase of Indian supplies, at some point in the Missouri Valley, instead of at New York, must command wide attention.
MR. RYAN TO COMMISSIONER PRICE.
WASHINGTON, Jan. 16, 1882.
Hon. Hiram Price, commissioner of Indian affairs.
SIR: Referring to our recent conversation respecting the bids for and awards of contracts for Indian supplies, I have the honor, in compliance with your suggetion to express in writing, briefly, the view which I then urged upon your consideration.
You will remember that the principal point urged was, that in future bids for furnishing Indian supplies of wheat, flour, corn, beef, pork, bacon, etc., should be received and awards made at some suitable place in The Missouri Valley. It will not have escaped your recollection that this matter was brought by me to the attention of the house of representatives in the last congress and that the proposition seemed to meet with very general acceptance, though it was found impracticable under the rules of the house, to embody it in the Indian appropriation bill then pending.
It must strike every reflecting mind as somewhat anomalous that bids should be invited and contracts awarded at the chief commercial center on the Atlantic seaboard for supplies which must be purchased from 1,000 to 1,500 miles west of that city, and so much nearer the various distributing points.
The states of Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa, and Minnesota, constitute the greatest wheat, corn, pork, and beef producing area on the continent or in the world, and from these states is drawn the great bulk of the food supply delivered to the Indians. Minnesota=s flouring mills are the most extensive in the world, and that state could supply the wants of all the Indians fed through the agency of the government without appreciably diminishing her grain surplus. The same may be said of my own state, a large part of which is contiguous to the Indian Territory, and from which a very large part of the supplies are drawn for the Indians located in that territory. And yet, contracts for supplying the Indians within the state of Minnesota and adjacent to it, and those within easy reach of Kansas producers, are awarded in the city of New York.
I cannot conceive that any sound reason can be given for transacting this important business so far from the base of supply. The disadvantages of the system can be shown from the history of the service, and from the experience of every man familiar with facts.
An examination of the reports of your office will show into how comparatively few hands the business of furnishing such Indian supplies has fallen. It will show, also, the substantial identity of the successful bidders from year to year.
For the most extensive contracts of flour, corn, pork, and beef, the great staples of the West, as I have already said, there are sometimes but three or four, and rarely or never exceeding six bidders; and it has been doubted whether among this small number the competition has always been genuine.
The system in vogue, despite the best intentions of the authorities, naturally tends to encourage combinations of professional contractors, and to exclude practical agriculturists and stock ranchhers, who ought to be able to furnish their productions to the government without paying tribute to professional middlemen.
Of course, I am aware that changing the place of letting these contracts from the east to the west will not of itself correct all the evils of the present system, though it would, doubtless, greatly lessen them. Much of that which is objectionable comes from other causes, among which are inadequate advertising, the too brief time to perfect and file the bids, and the dilatory system of adjusting accounts. These causes have operated powerfully in the interest of the contractors, and to the detriment of producers. The former are always promptly and thoroughly informed as to the requirements of the department, and have at their instant command all the requisite machinery, while the latter, if they acquire the information at all, do so at a later period, leaving too little time with which to prepare bids; procure and forward certified checks; and fulfill all the essential requirements. The result is, as I have intimated, and as the records show, to practically limit the dealings with the Indian office to a few persons, with the consequent facilities for collusion.
I have never heard one good reason why this business of awarding such Indian contracts should be transacted in the city of New York, and I do not believe that one can be advanced, while common sense and the application of ordinary Abusiness principles@ would require that these important transactions should have their center in the midst of the producing region.
It is most respectfully suggested, therefore, that you give such directions as will insure the reception of bids and awards of contracts for such supplies in the future at some suitable point in the Missouri valley. And further, that there be such an extension of time and such modifications of the plan of advertising as will tend to make more general the knowledge of the government=s needs, and correspondingly increase the facilities for general and genuine competition.
I regret that you are powerless to correct the pernicious system by which the settlement of claims arising from contracts faithfully performed is so unreasonably and unjustly procrastinated as to make it undesirable for businessmen to deal with the government, and which operates so prejudicially to the public interest by compelling the United States to pay so much more for its purchases than it otherwise need to do.
Winfield Courier, March 9, 1882.
GIST OF THE NEWS.
Congressman Ryan has finally succeeded in having an order issued for receiving bids for Indian supplies in the West as well as in New York. Kansas City has been designated as the place, and hereafter all bids for grain, flour, etc., will be opened and contracts awarded at that point.
[PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES, GOODS, AND TRANSPORTATION.]
Arkansas City Traveler, April 11, 1877.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS,
WASHINGTON, March 30, 1877.
SEALED PROPOSALS, indorsed Proposals for "Beef," Flour, Clothing, Transportation (as the case may be), and directed to the COMMISSIONER OF INDIAN AFFAIRS, No. 40 Leonard St., New York, will be received until 12 m. of TUESDAY, MAY 8, 1877, for furnishing the following Supplies, Goods, and Transportation required for the Indian Service for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1878:
Beef on the hoof, 34,838,000 pounds.
Flour, 5,764,500 pounds.
Bacon, 879,400 pounds.
Hard-bread, 90,000 pounds.
Corn, 2,464,500 pounds.
Lard, 14,000 pounds.
Mess-pork, 790 barrels.
Coffee, 453,900 pounds.
Sugar, 896,600 pounds.
Tobacco, 59,350 pounds.
Soda, 16,750 pounds.
Baking Powder, 28,340 pounds.
Rice, 83,000 pounds.
Tea, 6,580 pounds.
Beans, 184,500 pounds.
Soap, 118,420 pounds.
Hominy, 153,000 pounds.
Transportation for such of the above supplies as may not be contracted to be delivered at the several Indian Agencies.
Schedules, showing in details the quantities and kinds of goods and supplies required for each Agency, transportation routes, time and place of delivery, conditions to be observed by bidders, and terms of contract and payment, together with blank proposals and forms of contract and bond, will be furnished upon application to this Office (in Washington or at No. 40 Leonard St., New York); to E. M. Kingsley, 30 Clinton Place, New York; to Wm. Nicholson, Superintendent of Indian Affairs, Lawrence, Kansas; to the Commissaries of Subsistence, U. S. A., at St. Louis, Chicago, Sioux City, St. Paul, Leavenworth, Omaha, and Cheyenne; or to the several Indian Agents.
J. Q. SMITH, Commissioner.
[BIDS FOR TRANSPORTATION: INDIAN TERRITORY.]
Arkansas City Traveler, May 16, 1877.
Bids for Transportation.
OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS,
LAWRENCE, KANSAS, May 11, 1877.
Sealed proposals will be received in this office until 3 p.m. Friday, the 1st day of June next, for transportation of Indian goods and supplies, from points in Kansas to various Agencies in the Indian Territory. Circulars containing full information can be obtained on application to this office.
WM. NICHOLSON, Superintendent.
From the pen of C. M. Scott, when editor of the Traveler.
Arkansas City Traveler, July 4, 1877.
MEN OF THE BORDER soon learn to provide for themselves in time of trial. In the winter the timber is warmer than the prairie, but if caught on the prairie, a hole dug in the ground large enough for the body would often prevent freezing. The compass or resin weed indicates north, as does the moss and bark on trees. Water can be obtained from the root of a prairie plant, while the cactus affords food when baked. Land turtles are found in the shade of small plants; and when roasted, are good eating. A match, ever be so wet, can be dried by placing it in the hair of your head, or next to your body.
[CONGRESS: SPECIAL SESSION.]
Arkansas City Traveler, November 7, 1877. Front Page.
The House, on the 5th, transferred the office of Indian Affairs to the War Department; and authorized the election of a delegate from the Indian Territory.
[PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES AND TRANSPORTATION.]
TRAVELER, JUNE 5, 1878.
Proposals for Indian Supplies and Transportation.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, May 24, 1878. Sealed proposals, indorsed Proposals for Beef, Bacon, Flour, Clothing, or Transportation, etc. (as the case may be), and directed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Nos. 61 and 63 Wooster Street, New York, will be received until 11 a.m. of Tuesday, June 18, 1878, for furnishing for the Indian service about 675,000 pounds Bacon, 38,000,000 pounds Beef on the hoof, 160,000 pounds of Beans, 28,000 pounds Baking Powder, 2,000,000 pounds Corn, 450,000 pounds Coffee, 7,000,000 pounds Flour, 56,000 pounds Feed, 200,000 pounds Hard Bread, 113,000 pounds Hominy, 13,880 pounds Lard, 1,100 barrels Mess Pork, 215,000 pounds Rice, 7,000 pounds Tea, 56,000 pounds Tobacco, 200,000 pounds Salt, 100,000 pounds Soap, 6,000 pounds Soda, 920,000 pounds Sugar, and 1,356,000 pounds Wheat.
Also, Blankets, Woolen and Cotton goods (consisting in part of Ticking, 35,000 yards; Standard Calico, 300,000 yards; Drilling, 29,500 yards; Duck, 218,850 yards; Denims, 14,680 yards; Gingham, 32,500 yards; Kentucky Jeans, 48,800 yards; Satinett, 9,000 yards; Brown Sheeting, 250,000 yards; Bleached Sheeting, 26,000 yards; Hickory Shirting, 29,000 yards; Calico Shirting, 7,300 yards; Winsey, 7,500 yards;) Clothing, Groceries, Notions, Hardware, Medical Supplies; and miscellaneous articles, such as Wagons, Harness, Plows. Rakes, Forks, etc.
Also, Transportation for such of the Supplies, Goods, and articles that may not be contracted for to be delivered at the Agencies.
BIDS MUST BE MADE OUT ON GOVERNMENT BLANKS.
Schedules showing the kinds and quantities of subsistence supplies required for each Agency, and the kinds and quantities, in gross, of all other goods and articles, together with blank proposals and forms for contract and bond, conditions to be observed by bidders, time and place of delivery, terms of contract and payment, transportation routes and all other necessary instructions will be furnished upon application to the Indian Office at Washington, or Nos. 61 and 63 Wooster Street, New York; to E. M. Kingsley, No. 30 Clinton Place, New York; Wm. H. Lyon, No. 483 Broadway, New York; and to the Commissaries of Subsistence, U. S. A., at Chicago, Saint Louis, Sioux City, Saint Paul, Leavenworth, Omaha, and Cheyenne.
Bids will be opened at the hour and day above stated, and bidders are invited to be present at the opening.
CERTIFIED CHECKS ONLY RECEIVABLE ON FOLLOWING BANKS, ETC.
All bids must be accompanied by certified checks upon someone of the following banks or Government Depositories for at least five percent of the amount of the proposal, viz: Chemical National, New York; National Broadway, New York; Metropolitan National, New York; Ninth National, New York; Philadelphia National, Philadelphia; First National, Baltimore; Third National, Cincinnati; Union National, Chicago; Fourth National, St. Louis, and Citizen's National, Washington, D. C.; and the United States Assistant Treasurer at Philadelphia, Baltimore, Chicago, and St. Louis.
E. A. HAYT, Commissioner.
N. B. Blanks can be obtained at the office of this paper.
Arkansas City Traveler, August 14, 1878.
A TRIP THROUGH THE INDIAN TERRITORY AND TEXAS.
Visit to Ponca, Pawnee, and Sac & Fox Agencies.
[Article by C. M. Scott, Traveler Editor.]
During the heat of the summer, while the farmers are busy harvesting grain, the labors of a newspaper man slacken somewhat, and the editor generally avails himself of the dull times and journeys from home. This year the Kansas Editorial Association, in accordance with its established custom made a visit. Put-in-Bay, on Lake Erie, near Toledo, was their choice, but as we had previously visited that delightful place, we concluded we should see Texas, with its thousands of cattle, sheep, and horses, and unite an errand of business with one of pleasure.
With this desire we secured the company of Mr. B. F. Baldwin, the leading drug merchant of our sister town, who desired to travel for his health, and J. Frank Hess. Russell Wells and wife, of Sherman, Texas, had been waiting a week to cross the Arkansas River at this place, and joined us when we started.
The Arkansas was crossed on the ferry, and Bodoc Creek followed down its source thirty miles, when we came to Dean's ranchCnow Ponca Agency, with a new building, several tents about, and an Indian camp of one hundred tents a mile distant.
Salt Fork detained us one day and a half, by high water, but we succeeded in rafting across safely after many hours hard work and exposure.
The day following we reached Pawnee Agency, where we found the Indians dying off at a rapid rate from malarial diseases and no remedies at the physician's command.
From Pawnee Agency we went to Sac and Fox, crossing the Cimarron thirty miles from the Agency.
A horse was ridden over to see that the ford was safe; but just as the first wagon was pulling out on the opposite shore, the horses stopped a moment to raise up the bank, when down went the wagon in the treacherous quicksand. By the time the horses were taken ashore, the wagon had settled to the hubs and could not be pried out with a lever. We then had to take off the tongue, the box, wheels, reach, and every part that could be separated and carried them ashore in our hands. After this we broke down, and continued breaking down until we reached Sac and Fox Agency, 135 miles from home, where we left our wagon and went on horseback.
The road to Pawnee is good, but from Pawnee to Sac and Fox is very frequently cut up with hills and ravines.
About three miles west of the Sac Agency, we saw the brick house of Keokuk, the grandson of the old chief by that name, and for whom one of the largest towns of Iowa was called. The Sac and Fox Agency buildings are substantially built of red brick, with shrubbery and trees surrounding them. At this place we met our friend, Gen. McNeil, and were intro-duced to Agent Woodard and sons, whom we found pleasant, agreeable gentlemen.
As we stopped to leave our wagon at a store, we were informed that the house was that of Mister Whistler's. That name excited our curiosity at once. We had heard of Whistler, and Whistler's ranch so long and often that we wanted to see him. Instead of the half breed we heard he was, we found him a white man, possessed of that easy grace common to ranchmen, and attired in civilized clothing. His style and stature suited our fancy of a border man, although his ways and dress were far from what we expected. We should not have imagined there was a drop of Indian blood in his veins if he had not informed us. He told us his ranch was on the Cimarron, and on our return we "took it in." Finding it was off our road, and after journeying half a day among the rocks and "breaks" of the river, our desire to see the ranche no more was expressed in words:
"You may whistle for me at Whistler's ranche,
But I'll not be there to whistle."
While we were at dinner the Indians were chasing a bear backwards. That is, they had been chasing a bear, and the bear enjoyed it so well that when they quit, it was chasing them. A few days before a panther disposed of a calf and a sow with seven pigs. They told us where its den was, and that we could almost punch it with a pole, but our aversion for cruelty to animals persuaded us to let it alone.
From Sac and Fox Agency we followed the old Shawnee trail to Shawnee Town, thirty-five miles south. At this Agency they have a large brick school house, but most other buildings are very shabby.
Leaving Shawnee Town we traveled almost south fifty miles, leaving Stonewall six miles to the east, and about thirty miles south. We passed Tishamingo twelve miles east of it, then crossed Blue River and followed the Denison and Coffeyville cattle trail to Culbert's ferry on Red River, four miles from Denison,
which on a direct line south of Arkansas City, is 2182 miles. Denison, the point generally designated in going to Texas, is 24 miles east of the 97 meridian, while Arkansas City is three miles west, making the distance from Arkansas City to Denison 2422 miles. While this is the distance by traveling directly south and east, the real distance by way of the ordinary road traveled is over 300 miles. The country traveled over is varied but little. From the Kansas line to the Cimarron River, about one hundred miles, no prettier country can be found in the West. It is well supplied with streams, and in the lower portion of the 100 mile strip, it is well timbered. Below the Cimarron and all the way to Texas, there is considerable timber, being white oak, elm, sycamore, hickory, etc., of a good variety. We noticed white oak trees that would make four log cuts of fifteen feet each.
Our route to Denison was by way of Ponca Agency, 30 miles from Arkansas City; Pawnee Agency, 35 farther on; Sac and Fox Agency, 70 miles from Pawnee; Shawnee Town, 35 miles from Sac and Fox; Stonewall, 75 miles from Shawnee Town; and Denison, 65 miles from Stonewall.
The most important streams crossed are: Salt Fork, 35 miles from Arkansas City; Red Rock, 8 miles from Salt Fork; Turkey Creek, 10 miles from Red Rock; Black Bear, on which Pawnee Agency is located, 15 miles from Turkey Creek. Leaving Pawnee about 30 miles we cross the Cimarron, 95 miles from Arkansas City; then the Deep Fork of the Canadian at Sac and Fox Agency; then the North Fork of the Canadian two miles from Shawnee Town; then Little River, a branch of the Canadian, six miles west of Shawnee Town; then the Main Canadian, 30 miles south; then down Blue River six miles west of Stonewall and 12 miles east of Tishamingo; then down the cattle trail 60 miles to Culbert's ferry, where you cross the great Red River of the South.
We left Arkansas City Wednesday, June 26th, and arrived at Sherman, Wednesday, July 10th, fourteen days from the time of starting. On our return we were eleven days on the way, being detained half a day by high water and half a day off the road. In cool weather the ride can be made in eight days with grain fed horses. Feed can be had almost every forty miles, except between Pawnee and Sac and Fox Agencies.
Stock is considered very low, and many poor people are compelled to sell.
A short distance from Blue River, the bodies of three Creek Indians were lying close to the roadside, the victims of their own folly. They were what is known as "whiskey peddlers," and were shot for stealing ponies, driving them to Denison and trading them for whiskey.
A young man by the name of Quarrels had killed a man a few days before our arrival, and taken from him his revolver and pony and left the country.
At Johnson's ranch, on the Canadian, a party of three "whiskey peddlers" defied two U. S. Marshals and completely cowed them.
We met many noted characters on our way, and some of the most wicked countenances we ever saw. Among other distinguished individuals was Capt. F. M. Hiatt near Stonewall, living in a dense timber with a fine farm back of it, good horses, and a pack of hounds at his door. He was the owner of a full bloodhound, which we endeavored to get for the Bolton S. P. U., but the dog could not be bought. There were few bloodhounds in Texas, and none for sale.
Ten miles from Sac and Fox Agency, we overtook Jas. Mitchell and Jacob Beal, with 114 yearlings purchased in the Creek Nation, and camped with them at night, leaving Frank Hess to help them to the State. Beal was sick with fever, but Jim was in excellent spirits, only he wanted to see home.
The flies in places swarmed on our horses and almost ate them. We estimated that while we were in the fly regions, they sucked a quart of blood per day from them; and one animal, poorer than the rest, had his legs bitten until they were raw. Without covers for our horses, we could not have made the journey. One cattleman told us he had seven horses down that were worn out with the heat and flies. Most persons traveled after night to avoid the flies and heat of the sun during summer.
We haven't much to say of Texas in this article as it is already lengthy. As a State it is a large one. A good one for farming purposes in the Northeastern part, and one of the best stock regions in the United States in the western portion.
The people do not depend wholly on grain raising as in Kansas, and get a better price for what they raise. Kansas wheat is used all over the State and is considered a better quality than Texas grain.
Texas is no better place for a poor man than Kansas. We met dozens of wagons loaded with Southern Missourians and Arkansans, leaving and cursing the State. This, with some people, would be a good recommendation.
We had some of the same class in the early days here.
Not sure how to use Government proposals...through Newman???
Arkansas City Traveler, April 2, 1879.
PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES AND TRANSPORTATION.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, March 26, 1879.
Sealed proposals, indorsed Proposals for Beef, Bacon, Flour, Clothing, or Transportation, etc. (as the case may be), and directed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Nos. 65 and 67 Wooster Street, New York, will be received until 11 A. M. of Monday, April 21st, 1879, for furnishing for the Indian service about 800,000 pounds Bacon, 42,000,000 pounds Beef on the hoof, 172,000 pounds Beans, 52,000 pounds Baking Powder, 2,700,000 pounds Corn, 550,000 pounds Coffee, 8,300,000 pounds Flour, 125,000 pounds Feed, 300,000 pounds Hard Bread, 100,000 pounds Hominy, 9,130 pounds Lard, 1,650 barrels Mess Pork, 185,000 pounds Rice, 9,000 pounds Tea, 62,000 pounds Tobacco, 200,000 pounds Salt, 132,000 pounds Soap, 13,000 pounds Soda, 1,112,000 pounds Sugar, and 1,437,000 pounds Wheat.
Also, Blankets, Woolen and Cotton goods (consisting in part of Ticking, 35,000 yards; Standard Calico, 300,000 yards; Drilling, 20,500 yards; Duck, 218,850 yards; Denims, 14,680 yards; Gingham, 32,500 yards; Kentucky Jeans, 48,500 yards; Satinett, 9,000 yards; Brown Sheeting, 250,000 yards; Bleached Sheeting, 26,000 yards; Hickory Shirting, 29,000 yards; Calico Shirting, 7,300 yards; Winsey, 7,500 yards;) Clothing, Groceries, Notions, Hardware, Medical Supplies; and a long list of miscellaneous articles, such as Wagons, Harness, Plows, Rakes, Forks, etc.
Also, Transportation for such of the Supplies, Goods, and articles that may not be contracted for to be delivered at the Agencies.
BIDS MUST BE MADE OUT ON GOVERNMENT BLANKS. . . .
E. A. HAYT,
[PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES AND TRANSPORTATION.]
Arkansas City Traveler, May 19, 1880.
Proposals for Indian Supplies and Transportation.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, May 10, 1880.
Sealed proposals, indorsed proposals for Beef, Bacon, Flour, Clothing, or Transportation, etc. (as the case may be), and directed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Nos. 65 and 67 Wooster Street, New York, will be received until 11 A. M. of Monday, June 7th, 1880, for furnishing for the Indian service about 800,000 pounds Bacon, 40,000,000 pounds of Beef on the hoof, 128,000 pounds Beans, 55,000 pounds Baking Powder, 2,300,000 pounds Corn, 383,000 pounds Coffee, 8,300,000 pounds Flour, 212,000 pounds Feed, 300,000 pounds Hard Bread, 75,000 pounds Hominy, 9,000 pounds Lard, 1,650 barrels Mess Pork, 233,000 pounds Rice, 11,200 pounds Tea, 72,900 pounds Tobacco, 200,000 pounds Salt, 147,000 pounds Soap, 6,000 pounds Soda, 809,000 pounds Sugar, and 839,000 pounds Wheat.
Also, Blankets, Woolen and Cotton goods (consisting in part of Ticking, 44,000 yards; Standard Calico, 300,000 yards; Drilling, 19,000 yards; Duck, 181,000 yards; Denims, 18,000 yards; Gingham, 60,000 yards; Kentucky Jeans, 26,000 yards; Satinett, 2,700 yards; Brown Sheeting, 213,000 yards; Bleached Sheating, 17,000 yards; Hickory Shirting, 18,000 yards; Calico Shirting, 5,000 yards; Winsey, 650 yards); Clothing, Groceries, Notions, Hardware, Medical Supplies; and a long list of miscellaneous articles, such as wagons, Harness, Plows, Rakes, Forks, etc.
Also, Transportation for such of the Supplies, Goods, and articles that may not be contracted for to be delivered to the Agencies.
BIDS MUST BE MADE OUT ON GOVERNMENT BLANKS.
Schedules showing the kinds and quantities of subsistence supplies required for each Agency, and the kinds and quantities, in gross, of all other goods and articles, together with blank proposals and forms for contract and bond, conditions to be observed by bidders, time and place of delivery, times of contract and payment, transportation routes, and all necessary instructions will be furnished, upon application to the Indian Office in Washington, or Nos. 65 and 67 Wooster Street, New York; to E. M. Kingsley, No. 30 Clinton Place, New York; Wm. H. Lyon, No. 483 Broadway, New York; and to the Commissaries of Subsistence, U. S. A., at Chicago, Saint Louis, Saint Paul, Leavenworth, Omaha, Cheyenne, and Yankton, and the Post master at Sioux City.
Bids will be opened at the hour and day above stated, and bidders are invited to be present at the opening.
All bids must be accompanied by certified checks upon some United States Depository or assistant. Treasurer, for at least five per cent of the amount of the proposal.
R. E. TROWBRIDGE,
[LETTER FROM C. M. SCOTT: TERRITORY MATTERS.]
Arkansas City Traveler, May 21, 1879.
Territory MattersCLetter from C. M.
At your suggestion I will give you a few brief items from the land of the red man, from which I have just returned after three weeks absence, a ride of 600 miles on horseback from Arkansas City to Camp Supply, via way of Cheyenne Agency and Fort Reno, Fort Bennett, and up the North Fork of the Canadian into the Pan Handle of Texas.
All through the northern part of the Territory we met bone hunters gathering buffalo bones for sale at Dodge City and Wichita. They usually take down corn and bring back a load of bones for which they get $7.50 per ton. I don't know what they get for corn, but it retails at $1 per bushel all through the northern part of the Territory and at 22 cents per pound, or $1.50 per bushel at Camp Supply. We conversed with several owners of large herds of stock that declared their intentions to make Arkansas City their headquarters this fall.
James Steen was on the road with 900 head of ponies, and is probably at Caldwell now. Others were behind him with from one to three hundred head. All horned stock looked a little thin on account of the hard winter, and grass was short for want of rain. Young stockCyear-lings and two year oldsCcould not be bought; there were none for sale but thousands on the range. On our way back we visited the camp of the Patrol Guards and found them active and ready to meet the wayward Cheyennes, but there is none to meet except those that freight from Wichita to the Agency.
The roads were almost lined with immigrants to Harper and Barbour counties, and wild schemers on their way to Leadville.
Deer, elk, turkeys, wolves, and antelope were numerous, but the buffalo were all in New Mexico, and will not be seen within 200 miles of Arkansas City before July or August, when they will range north.
The Indians were all quiet and peaceable, and many of them planting corn and putting up fences. Occasionally a white whiskey seller ventures in, but Agent Miles has the reputation of knowing a rogue at first sight a mile off, so it is not often attempted.
You may wonder that we ever returned under those circumstances; but we did, and found the town improved to such an extent we hardly knew it.
Yours, C. M.
Arkansas City Traveler, June 4, 1879.
[Report from C. M. Scott.]
THE TERRITORY AGAIN.
I have just completed another little jog into the Territory, and will relate what I saw.
Gen. McNeil was at Ponca Agency on the 22nd, and may go down to Oklahoma to advise the settlers on the North Fork. Troops from Camp Supply and Fort Sill have already been there, and the result was settlers were strung out all along the road on their way back, cursing the country, the soldiers, and above all, the Kansas City Times, and its "pal"CCarpenter.
Agent Howarth will not take charge of the Pawnees, but enjoy himself visiting the Agencies all around. A few years wrestling with the ague at Kiowa and Comanche Agency satisfied him that the Territory, generally, is not a healthy location.
About sixty of the Pawnees are out on a buffalo hunt, and forty are visiting the Wichitas.
We cut across the country from Pawnee to Kaw Agency, making the trip in a day's rride. It is a much nearer route to Arkansas City, and fully as good road as by the way of Ponca.
The Osages were counciling, on our arrival, but we did not stop to hear them. They have a great many ponies. Some very fancy; but few for sale.
Gov. Joe's camp is near the mouth of Salt Creek, about five miles from the crossing point of the Arkansas. The Arkansas ford at Salt Creek is a good one, although the water was four feet deep in the channel.
Up Salt Creek we saw millions of the "fourteen year locusts." In the creek beautiful fish could be seen grabbing at flies as they fell on its surface.
Crops on Grouse creek are looking splendid, and everything has the appearance of thrift.
All cattle men, as well as others, will have to leave the Territory within the next sixty days, in compliance with the order from the Interior Department at Washington. So much for the white settlers rushing in and making fools of themselves, and bringing hardships upon stock men.
[REPORT FROM C. M. SCOTT: AMONG THE CHEYENNES.]
Arkansas City Traveler, July 23, 1879.
Fourth of July Among the Cheyennes.
I chanced to go down at Fort Reno on that glorious day of the independence of the United States, the 4th of July, and was entertained by a scene that is seldom witnessed of parties living in the States.
The soldiers announced among other amusements that they would have a trial of speed between some of the best animals at the Post. This was enough to bring in every chief, warrior, squaw, and papoose on the reserve, and long before the appointed time they were on hand, attired in gaudy colors and fixtures, to witness it, for an Indian loves to see a horse race as a pup loves milk.
The race was run, and after a fearful round of cheers, yells, and screeches, they proposed running their own animals. The track was given them and for the balance of the day race after race was run. Blankets, saddles, and nearly all of their paraphernalia were offered as bets and greedily taken. The contest seemed to be between the Cheyennes and the Arapahoes. Each tried to outrival the other. They were fair in starting. No jockeying, and rode as only Indians can ride, which I would pronounce equal to anything, if not excelling by far. The horses, or ponies, were run until it was so dark they had to quit, and all went to their tents.
The next day dawned, and they were on the ground again with the same program; running one horse as many as a dozen times during the day. And so it was the next day and the next. Why, we had Fourth of July for a solid week, and it seemed as though there would be no let up to it.
The issue of beef came in, however, and diverted their attention for awhile. You can always draw an Indian's attention with beef. Beef keeps peace, makes them fat, lazy, and good natured, and when they haven't it, look out.
It was a sight to see them running after these cattle and shooting them down like buffalo. In fact, there are hundreds of interesting things among themCtheir dances, funerals, councils, and sports at ball, swimming, tanning robes, moving camps, building brush fences, and trying to farm; but I won't attempt to tell you all these.
[REPORT FROM C. M. SCOTT ON INDIAN TERRITORY.]
Arkansas City Traveler, August 27, 1879. Front Page.
FROM THE INDIAN TERRITORY.
STOCK ITEMS, HORSE STEALING, ETC.
It has been about one month since you heard from me, so I write again. You have heard by this time of the murder of the unknown man near Caldwell, at the crossing of the "Shawas-caspah," on the road to Wellington. He was shot behind the ear with a small pistol, and then placed in a blanket and rolled in the brush. A freighter, happening to break his wagon tongue, went into the thicket to cut a pole, and discovered the body. No clue to the murderer has yet been found.
Caldwell still keeps improving. It is now incorporated as a city of the third-class, with efficient police force to quell the racket of the cowboy. They had their first show last week, being of a minstrel variety, with Van Kelso, formerly cook of the Central Avenue Hotel at Arkansas City, as one of the chief actors. About fifty Arapahoes with wagons from Cheyenne Agency passed through town, on their way to Wichita after freight.
We had occasion to go into the Territory, and after a day and a half's journey from Caldwell, brought up at Drum's cattle ranche, at the mouth of Medicine Lodge creek, where Prof. Norton used to trade with the Indians many years ago. It had been very dry, but since the rain the grass has sprung up like magic, and this section now is one of the finest grazing regions we have seen in all our travels; the grass is the alkali or buffalo, and very nutritious. Mr. Drum has 2,400 head that he holds with two herders. The wages of herders is $25 per month and board. Most cattle men have abandoned night herding, claiming the stock does better, and it is not necessary except in cases of storms. Major Drum's brand is U on the left shoulder. From Medicine Lodge we went to Clay creek, where we found Mr. Bates, with 900 head of cows and calves, all looking well. He had been compelled to move camp for water, and the rain helped him, so that he can now make a choice of good ground. Mr. Bates is a merchant at Wellington, and leaves the entire care of the cattle to his two men. His brand is a triangle with T attached, placed on the right side of the animal.
From Bates' we went to Johnson's on Eagle Chief creek. The range here had almost been destroyed for want of rain, and had it been much later would have compelled cattle men to keep out of that section entirely. Mr. Johnson has 1,900 head of stock cattle, and 1,600 more coming up the trail. The Kiowas and Comanches raided his herd as he was coming out of Texas last spring and stole 250 head of large cattle. He will endeavor to have the Agent make them pay for it. He has but three herders with the 1,600 head of cattle, and they seem to get along very well. His brand is 5 with a bar across the top, branded on the hip.
Mr. J. W. Short, on one of the western branches of Turkey creek, just above where the Ellsworth trail crosses, has forty head of three and four year old cattle, which he offers for $14 per head, and 54 yearlings at $8 each. His two year olds he offers for $12. Here is a bargain for someone wanting to engage in stock. The cattle are half Texan and in good order.
Two men attempted to run off forty head of ponies last week, but were pursued by officers and several shots exchanged. The thieves got in the brush on Salt Fork and made their escape without the ponies.
The blacksmith soldier who deserted from Fort Reno, and took a horse with him, was caught at Wellington. He will probably go to the Leavenworth military prison for five years.
The Dodge City Times was mistaken about the Pawnees killing buffalo on Medicine Lodge creek. There have been none in that region for more than a year. Deer, antelope, turkeys, and wolves are plentiful, with occasionally a stray elk or bear.
In attempting to cross the North Fork of the Canadian river on the 17th inst., while it was full from bank to bank, our horse mired down in the quicksand and left us to make our way to the shore with gun, saddle bags, etc., on our own back. We landed on the military reserve of Fort Cantonment, the new post, and were accosted by the provost guard, to whom we gave little satisfaction, not being in a humor to talk. He informed us that every person had to have a pass to travel through the Territory. We gently hinted that we preferred to talk with the commanding officer, and were escorted to him. Col. Dodge, being absent, we were not recognized by the new official, but was helped out of the dilemma by the appearance of the Post Scout, Amos Chapman, without producing our papers. Covered with mud and soaking with water, with a small arsenal attached to our person, we well might have been taken for almost any kind of a criminal.
The permanent buildings of the new Post are being erected of stone, on a small mound just north of the temporary post, in a more pleasant and healthy location. There are six companies here of the 23rd Infantry, formerly stationed at Fort Leavenworth. During the absence of Col. Dodge, Capt. George M. Randall, of Co. I, has command. The companies are A, C, D, G, I, and K. The balance of the regiment is at Camp Supply.
Mr. Keating, of Leavenworth, is Post Trader, and has a fine store and stock of goods. They have a saw mill, brick yard, one saloon, one blacksmith, and all the necessary tradesmen here. The health of the soldiers has not been very good, and several deaths have occurred during their short stay. About 23 have deserted this spring, and a number caught and brought back who attempted it. Mr. Bigford of Leavenworth has the hay and wood contract, and is paying laborers $25 per month and board. His contract to furnish wood at the Post is $1.00 per cord, and hay at $7 per ton. Corn retails at one dollar per bushel, and is hard to get. The suttlers say they would buy a quantity if it should be brought in. Board at the citizens' mess house is $5 per week. At the laborers', $2. There is not much amusement here, during the warm weather. In fact the 23rd is not so apt in making amusements as some other regiments.
Yours, C. M.
Arkansas City Traveler, Wednesday, December 10, 1879.
Kansas has 78 townships along the Indian Territory, and measures 468 miles long. It has 25 townships east of the 6th principal meridian and 43 west of it. Arkansas City is four miles west of the 97th meridian and 3 ranges or 18 miles east of the 6th principal meridian.
Camp Supply is 150 miles west of Arkansas City and 36 miles south, or 186 miles distant. It is situated between Wolf and Beaver Creeks that make the head of the North Canadian.
Fort Cantonment is ten townships south and sixteen townships west, or one hundred and fifty-six miles distant from Arkansas City.
Fort Reno is 130 miles southwest.
Arkansas City is the supply point for 14,342 Indians, besides the U. S. soldiers at different forts, and the cattlemen and cowboys of the Territory.
C. M. SCOTT.
Arkansas City Traveler, Wednesday, December 17, 1879.
It is a very common occurrence for men who commit crime in Kansas to make their escape into the Indian Territory. Having reached there, they claim immunity from punishment and are ready for a life of the outlaw. Many of these charmers are secluded in the western part of the Territory, though by far the greater number are making homes among the natives of the Five Nations.
If an intelligent observer should travel through that part of the Territory lying East of the 96 degree of longitude he will be struck with the large number of white population claiming rights in the Territory by virtue of various concessions. Scores of white men are there without authority from the general Government, but claim protection under the local laws of the tribes, prescribing citizenship to those who intermarry with the Indian.
Now, the white race can well afford to spare those who, as a general rule, from choice, adopt the domestic relations of an inferior race, but does the Indian derive any advantage thereby? What can be the scale of society for generations to come that has for its progenitors a vagrant vicious class? It has long been the policy of the Government to keep the Territory intact from the grasp of the white man, but during the elapse of time, he has gone in by stealth, and this element now enacts the local laws of the most important tribes.
The criminal records of the Federal court at Fort Smith bear testimony that more crimes are committed within the territory than can be brought to trial at that renowned bar of justice. No thoughtful man will presume that left to itself, the present condition of things will improve in the Indian Territory. The reader will ask, Is there a remedy for these evils? We believe so. If Congress should pass an act to open this Territory to the actual settler, the problem would soon be solved. But, say some, "This would be doing injustice to the Indian; we can't afford to break faith with the red man; he is our ward and entitled to our protection." This is pretty logic provided it does no violence to the rights of the white race. We confess that we are of the brotherhood who believe that the white man is as good as any, and entitled to some rights as well as the Indian. We search in vain for authority in the organic law of this government to make treaty with Indian tribes. If the Indian is solely the ward of this government, by what right is he clothed with the importance of a Foreign power and treaties ratified for his special benefit? But if Congress can never get ready to open the Territory to the actual settler, justice to the citizens of Kansas demands that an act be passed prescribing to the Federal Courts of this district concurrent jurisdiction over the Indian Territory.
The large influx of population into southwest Kansas for the last two years will demand, at least, an annual session of the Federal Court on the southern border of the State; and with the Territory attached to this judicial district, no locality offers as many advantages for the business of a Federal Court as Arkansas City.
[Name of author of above article not given. Do not believe it was Scott. Copied for information it contains.]
Statistical information gathered by C. M. Scott pertaining to Indian Tribes in Indian Territory.
Arkansas City Traveler, November 26, 1879.
The Kaw Indians have a reservation of 100,141 acres, and the Osages a tract of 1,466,167 acres, that the government purchased of the Cherokees in 1866 at 70 cents per acre. Both reserves are well watered and timbered.
The Nez Perces reserve, situated west of Shawascospa river, and north of Salt Fork, contains 57,005 acres, and the Poncas, just below them, have 101,894 acres.
The Kaws number 424.
The Osages number 2,391.
The Nez Perces number 391.
The Poncas number 620.
The whole number of Indians in the United States is 266,151 and 40,639 mixed bloods. Of these 104,818 wear citizens' clothes; 55,717 live in houses, and 25,622 can read.
Nearly one-third of all the Indians in the United States are located in the Indian Territory, being 75,356. Of these 26,860 are mixed bloods, and they hold 41,098,398 acres of land as reservations, two-thirds of which have been surveyed.
The Pawnees number 1,440, and have a reservation of 265,000 acres. Two bands live in villages, 50 males and 65 females wear citizens' dress; the balance wear blankets. Among the Pawnees 120 of them can read, and 20 of those learned last year. They have no church or missionary. Their land was purchased of the Cherokees at 70 cents per acre and has not been paid for yet by the Government.
The Government also purchased from the Creeks the west half of their entire domain at 30 cents per acre, and then sold to the Sac and Fox Indians 478,627 acres at 30 cents, and to the Seminoles 200,000 acres at 50 cents per acre (speculated a little).
I mention these tribes as they are our neighbors, but might fill the entire paper about what they are all doing.
C. M. [Scott]
Arkansas City Traveler, November 26, 1879.
Commissioner Hayt says: "There is a vast area of land in the Indian Territory not yet occupied. Into this should, and may, be gathered the major portion of the Indians of New Mexico, Colorado, and Arizona.The paramount object being to locate them on good agricultural lands to which permanent title can be given, and to sustain and aid them thereon until they become self-supporting."
Arkansas City Traveler, Wednesday, December 10, 1879.
There are in the United States, 143 Indian reserves, embracing 151,000,000 acres, in the limits of the United States and nine Territories.
There have been 652 treaties made with the different tribes since the adoption of the federal constitution, on matters of land.
There are 125 licensed Indian traders in the U. S. The licenses are granted by the Commissioner of Indian affairs. The bond of a trader is ten thousand dollars.
There are in the Indian service 74 agents, three inspectors, and two special agents, who have to give bond in sums from $5,000 to $50,000.
Most Indians are good judges of horses, and make good trades when swapping with the whites. Agent Stubbs believes in the mule as an Indian civilizer. The animal has more endurance; cares for himself, and above all, can't be used in racing.
By hunting, farming, freighting, and the sale of robes, furs, etc., the Cheyennes and Arapahoes supply one-half of their existence, and the government the other half.
The Kiowas and Comanches draw more than three-fourths of their supplies from the government, and only "rustle" for less than a fourth of their rations.
The Pawnees make a fourth of their "chuck" and look to Uncle Sam for the balance. This is owing to the scarcity and great distance they have to go for game.
The Wichitas earn half of their hog and hominy.
The Osages derive a large revenue from the sale of ponies, and they have thousands of them. They receive five percent per annum interest on $69,120 for educational purposes, and five percent on $300,000, or $15,000 a year, paid semi-annually either in money or such articles as the Secretary of the Interior may direct. They have $39,911.53 in government bonds of the loan of 1881, bearing five percent, besides $7,000 of Missouri State bonds drawing six percent, the interest of which Missouri has failed to pay since 1861 to the present time.
Among the Cheyenne and Arapahoes last year there were 183 births and 148 deaths.
Among the Poncas there were 45 births and 85 deaths.
Among the Sac and Foxes, there were 15 births and 14 deaths.
$215,350 was expended last year among all the Indians of the United States for educational purposes, and 1,532 learned to read, making an average cost of $14.50 to teach each Indian.
The religious societies of the U. S. contributed $66,759 last year to Mr. Lo.
A total of 2,941 little Indians came to life last year and a total of 2,219 departed. So they are nearly holding their own.
The Kaws cultivated 745 acres of ground last year; raised 7,000 bushels of corn, and cut 25 cords of wood. They have 108 ponies, and 136 hogs.
The Osages cultivated 44,112 acres of land, and raised 4,000 bushels of wheat, 75,000 bushels of corn, 500 bushels of barley; put up 500 tons of hay, and cut 100 cords of wood. They have 3,177 ponies, 29 mules, 2,030 head of cattle, and 5,227 hogs.
The Pawnees cultivated 1,000 acres and raised 8,000 bushels of corn, 830 bushels of vegetables, put up 600 tons of hay, and cut 250 cords of wood.
The Kaws number 424; Osages 2,391; and Pawnees 1,438.
All the Indians of the United States own 176,766 horses, 4,479 mules, 52,867 cattle, 27,671 swine, 510,674 sheep.
Most of the Osages that make any pretense of religion are Catholics.
Arkansas City has done considerable toward supplying the Indians with subsistence to say nothing of the amount sent to the different military posts and employees at several Agencies.
In 1868, R. C. Haywood contracted for 150,000 pounds of corn for Cheyenne Agency at $1.38 per 100 pounds.
R. C. Hayward the same year delivered 5,333 bushels of wheat at Pawnee Agency.
R. C. Haywood received the following for freight from Wichita to the various agencies.
$1.98 per 100 pounds to Cheyenne Agency
$2.42 per 100 pounds to Kiowa Agency
$1.67 per 100 pounds to Sac and Fox Agency
$2.22 per 100 pounds to Wichita Agency
In 1868 A. A. Newman took the contract for the following.
100,000 lbs. of flour at Wichita Agency
300,000 lbs. of flour at Kiowa Agency
600,000 lbs. of flour at Cheyenne Agency
150,000 lbs. of flour at Ponca Agency
66,000 lbs. of flour at Sac & Fox Agency
In all, 1,216,000 pounds, besides the hauling.
A. A. Newman took the contract to deliver goods from Wichita to Ponca Agency at 83 cents per 100 pounds.
Ed. Fenlon took the contract to deliver Indian goods from New York to Kaw and Osage Agencies for $2.99 per 100 pounds; to Pawnee Agency for $3.00 per 100 pounds; and to Sac and Fox Agency for $3.25 per 100 pounds.
Ed. Fenlon also delivered goods from Kansas City to Kaw Agency for $2.05 per 100 pounds; and to the Osage Agency the same as to Kaw Agency. To Pawnee Agency and to Ponca Agency $2.35 per 100 pounds. He delivered to Sac and Fox Agency for $2.55 per 100 pounds.
NOTE: What Mr. Haywood hauled for $1.98 per hundred, Mr. Fenlon wanted $2.10; and what Mr. Newman hauled for 83 cents, Mr. Fenlon wanted $1.00.
The three point eight pound white blankets were furnished to the government at $4.80. The 22 point white blankets were furnished to the government at $3.60, and the 32 point, 10 pound, green blanket were furnished to the government at $7.50 each.
The Indian coats were furnished at $2.84 each, pants $1.63 per pair, calico shirts at 24-1/4 cents each, Overalls at 38 cents per pair, boots at $2.12 per pair, shoes $1.15, rubber boots at $2.44 per pair, hats 47 cents, caps 302 cents, single harness per set $16, plow harness $38.25, rope one cent a pound, saddles $7, washboards 99 cents a dozen, wagons, 3 inch, $52.00, coffee pots $1.25 per dozen, bar lead 3-1/4 cents per pound, fence wire 12 cents per pound.
These goods were furnished in great quantities, and many of them very little above the actual cost of manufacture. The price given is what they cost the government in New York City.
C. M. SCOTT.
[ARTICLE BY C. M. SCOTT: RAILWAY ROUTE TO FORT SMITH.]
Arkansas City Traveler, February 11, 1880. Editorial Page.
The Railway Route to Fort Smith.
I have been repeatedly asked since my return regarding the practicability of a railroad route from Arkansas City to Fort Smith, Arkansas, the present terminus of the Little Rock and Ft. Smith railway.
On the 25th of January in company with Mr. John E. Thomes, civil engineer of the A. T. & S. F. railway, we proceeded on horseback to Kaw Agency, a distance of about twenty-five miles, following the Arkansas river to within three miles of the Agency, then crossing through a draw from the Arkansas to Beaver creek; thence down Salt creek about fifteen miles, and up another draw into Hominy creek, then down the latter stream to where it empties into Bird creek, then down Bird creek to the Verdigris river, and down to the Arkansas to Ft. Gibson, a distance of one hundred and ninety miles. On Bird creek and the Verdigris river many bends of the streams were cut off, passing over smooth, high prairie, at an elevation of not more than thirteen hundred feet above the level of the sea, and not to exceed a fifty foot grade.
Along the route was some of the finest farming lands we ever saw; especially in the Verdigris valley, which is frequently more than three miles in width.
The people of Fort Gibson were very anxious to have the road built, and manifested great willingness to take hold of the matter.
Along Bird creek walnut lumber was being cut and sawed to ship to Chicago, for which the contractors were paying $1 per thousand feet in the tree. They could load on about 7,000 feet on one car, and it is said they receive $80 per thousand in Chicago for it. Corn was $1 per bushel at Gibson and it was expected to be $1.50 before corn time next year.
Some of the Cherokees and Creeks were in favor of a railroad while the majority were opposed to it.
Another very good route could be made crossing the Arkansas at this place, then cross back near Kaw Agency, and down from the head of Bird creek by way of Osage Agency. This would necessitate two bridges across the Arkansas at a cost of $20,000, and following the Bird creek valley would make the road a crooked one.
C. M. SCOTT.
Arkansas City Traveler, February 11, 1880.
C. M. Scott has returned from his trip to Ft. Gibson. He reports that a practical route for a railway through the Territory was found, and now the chief difficulty that exists in the way of connecting us with Ft. Smith is the want of proper legislation in Congress on the subject.
[Pertinent item...but not written by C. M. Scott.]
[INDIAN TERRITORY: HISTORY, ETC.]
TRAVELER, WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 18, 1880 - FRONT PAGE.
RECAP: FOR SOME TIME SOMEONE CALLING HIMSELF "COWLEY" HAS BEEN WRITING ARTICLES TO THE TRAVELER RE EVENTS IN CONGRESS. THUS FAR I HAVE SKIPPED THESE ARTICLES, WHICH ARE INTERESTING AND FAR-REACHING. BUT AT THIS POINT IN TIME I THINK IT PERTINENT TO PRINT PART OF THE PRESENT CORRESPONDENCE FROM "COWLEY."
Last part of his correspondence only...
"The proceedings of the House were only important in showing the weakness of the report of the Committee on Rules before the House and the disposition of its members to deprive the Appropriation Committee of the immense power it now exercises in shaping the legislation of the House, and that Committee decided not to perfect any more appropriation bills until the House finally agreed and adopted the new rules, which will set at rest the disputed question of jurisdiction of the appropriation Committee. During the early part of the day, the bill for converting the National gold banks into National banks was taken from the Speaker's desk and passed.
"Mr. Ryan (Kansas) presented the petition of 1,000 citizens of the State, in favor of granting the right of way to RAILWAYS THROUGH THE INDIAN TERRITORY.
"The petitioners, he stated, were willing the territory should remain a home for the Indians; but they asked that it should no longer be an obstruction to commerce between the different States and Territories. The petition was referred to the Committee on Railways and Canals. Several other unimportant bills were introduced, but the debate on the "rules" occupied the most of the time with the least to show for it. . . ."
"PUNISHMENT OF CRIME IN THE INDIAN TERRITORY.
"The House Committee on Indian affairs have agreed upon the terms of the bill to provide for the punishment of crime in the Indian Territory. At the meeting of the Committee on Friday morning Chairman Scales was instructed to report it to the House. It provides that the laws of the respective States and Territories in which are located Indian reservations, relating to the crimes of murder, manslaughter, arson, rape, burglary, and robbery, shall be deemed and taken to be the law and in force within such reservations; and the district courts of the United States within and for the respective districts in which such reservations may be located in any State, and the territorial courts of the respective territories in which such reservations may be located shall have original jurisdiction over all such offenses which may be committed within such reservations.
"In respect to all that portion of the Indian Territory not set apart and occupied by the Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, Chickasaw, and Seminole Indian Tribes, the provisions of the laws of the State of Kansas relating to the crimes of murder, manslaughter, arson, rape, burglary, and robbery shall be deemed and taken to be the law and in force therein; and the United States district court for the western district of the State of Kansas, at Fort Scott, shall have exclusive original jurisdiction over all such offenses arising in said portion of the Indian Territory. The place of punishment of any and all said offenses shall be the same as for other like offenses arising within the jurisdiction of said respective courts."
Arkansas City Traveler, September 22, 1880. Editorial Page.
[Report from C. M. Scott.]
FROM THE WEST.
PEARLETTE, Mead [Meade] Co., Kansas, Sept. 15, 1880.
Ed. Traveler: Away out here in Mead [Meade] county, after passing over nearly one hundred miles of only partially settled country, I find a number of settlers on Crooked creek, raising rice or Egyptian corn, sorghum, millet, peanuts, and watermelons, and the crops would all have yielded well had it not been for a hail storm of last week. So long as the farmers confine themselves to the above crops, they will do well enough, but wheat and corn will fail.
In this high, dry, timberless country, good water is obtained at a depth of twenty-five feet.
The grass, although short this year on account of dry weather, remains green the whole year, and it is one of the best stock counties in Kansas. Eighty miles farther west you come to the Colorado line, a vast, sandy, and unsettled country.
The great salt well or "sink" is ten miles below here. A few years ago it covered an acre of surface, and suddenly the ground caved in and three acres dropped down twenty feet. People came forty miles and more to see it. The Salt Plains of the Cimarron are about forty miles southeast.
I have seen all of Kansas, the garden patches of the eastern part, the wheat fields of the north, the well watered, the timbered, the flinty ridges, and the stock counties, and I am glad I live in noble young Cowley. C. M.
Does not pertain to Scott, but needs to be inserted somewhere...
TRAVELER, JANUARY 12, 1881 - PAGE FOUR.
INDIAN SCHOOL AT CARLISLE, PENNSYLVANIA.
After the band of fierce warriors brought to Fort Madison in chains had returned to their homes in the Indian Territory, civilized, industrious men, Capt. Pratt, to whose efforts this change was due, was anxious to continue in this new Indian warfare, where the weapons were Christian love and interest. His next victory was the placing, by the authority of the Interior Department, of forty-nine Indian children at Hampton Institute.
The military barracks at Carlisle, Pennsylvania, were unoccupied by troops. Pleasantly located, the commodious buildings well adapted to such use, Capt. Pratt decided that this was the place for an Indian school. Educational work on an Indian reserve is doubly difficult, because the teaching of the schools is so much counteracted by the evil influences of home associations. When Capt. Pratt laid before Secretary Schurz his plan of utilizing the Carlisle Barracks for an Indian school, the Secretary at once gave it his cordial approval, and by his powerful support, with the cooperation of the War Department, the school was opened.
The first delegation of eighty-four boys and girls from Red Cloud and Spotted Tail's bands of Sioux arrived in October, 1879. These children were fresh from the lodges, utterly wild and uncivilized, clad in their savage garb, with long unkempt hair and painted faces. The task of civilization seemed hopeless. The first lessons were on the uses of soap and water, of scissors and comb, and then the blankets and moccasins were laid aside for coats, shoes, and dresses. The number of pupils at present in the school is 212. The tribes represented are Apaches, Arapahoes, Cheyennes, Comanches, Kiowas, Wichita, Poncas, Pawnees, Nez Perces, Menomonees, Keechis, Towaconnis, Pueblos, Seminoles, Iowas, Sacs, Foxes, and Lipans. Applications for the admission of children from other tribes are constantly received, and it is anticipated that the number will ere long reach 300, the full capacity of the school.
In deed as well as in name, it is an "Indian Training School," and its object is to make its students useful, self-reliant people, competent to support themselves by their own exertions. They are therefore trained in industrial pursuits. In the kitchen, dining-room, and laundry, the girls receive careful instructions in household duties. In the sewing-room they learn to cut, make, and mend garments. Many of them use the sewing machine very skillfully, and it is quite amusing on mending days to see the group of little ones gathered about the great basket of stockings to be darned.
Connected with the schools are shops where the boys receive instruction in various trades. Those who are apprenticed spend two days at work and four in school each week. There are tailors, shoemakers, carpenters, blacksmiths, tinners, wagon and harness makers, printers, and bakers. The wagon makers and harness makers and trimmers are kept busy in filling orders for goods to be supplied by the Indian Department to Indians on the reservations. The printers do considerable work for the school, and one of them, a Pawnee boy of fourteen, edits a tiny paper, "School News," which is made up from the unaided productions of the students. The other apprentices are employed in needful work for the school. All receive sixteen cents a day for the time they work, and thus they have opportunities for lessons in economy and prudence in spending money. Twelve of the boys are organized into a brass band, and are able to play quite a number of pieces in a manner which does them much credit.
The teaching of the school rooms is by such methods as experience has shown to be best adapted to pupils with no knowledge of English. The progress made has been such as to satisfy the most sanguine expectations. Every month a report is sent to each student's parents, telling of the conduct, health, and scholarship of the student during the month. The report is accompanied by a letter from the student, so that at least once a month a message of peace goes to the distant lodges. Most of the children write oftener than once a month. They are governed kindly yet firmly. They are not hampered by useless regulations, but those that exist must be strictly kept. The pupils are never whipped. Most of them attend religious services in the various churches of Carlisle. Those who do not go to the Sabbath schools in the town are taught in the chapel, and on Sunday afternoons there is a service conducted by one of the ministers from Carlisle. Once a week there is a students' prayer meeting.
This sketch will show the important work that is going on at this Indian school. There ought to be many such schools. The United States Government is bound by its treaty stipulations with almost every Indian tribe to provide educational advantages for all the children of the tribe, and in not a single instance is this contract fulfilled.
Is it not time our nation should begin to keep its promises to these people? Let the Carlisle school be but a beginning, and the work started by Capt. Pratt be carried forward at many another point. Hundreds, yes thousands, of Indian children are begging for the teaching which should be given them not as a charity, but as their right.
New York Observer.
[PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES AND TRANSPORTATION.]
TRAVELER, MARCH 30, 1881.
PROPOSALS FOR INDIAN SUPPLIES AND TRANSPORTATION.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, Office of Indian Affairs, Washington, March 23, 1884. Sealed proposals, indorsed Proposals for Beef, Bacon, Flour, Clothing, or Transportation, etc., (as the cause may be), and directed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, Nos. 65 and 67 Wooster Street, New York, will be received until 11 a.m. of Monday, May 2, 1881, for furnishing for the Indian service about 800,000 pounds of Bacon, 40,000,000 pounds of Beef on the hoof, 128,000 pounds of Beans, 70,000 pounds of Baking Powder, 2,300,000 pounds of corn, 750,000 pounds of Coffee, 8,300,000 pounds of Flour, 212,000 pounds Feed, 300,000 pounds Hard Bread, 75,000 pounds Hominy, 9,000 pounds Lard, 1,650 barrels Mess Pork, 233,000 pounds Rice, 11,200 pounds Tea, 72,900 pounds Tobacco, 200,000 pounds Salt, 200,000 pounds Soap, 6,000 pounds Soda, 1,250,000 pounds Sugar, and 839,000 pounds of Wheat.
Also, Blankets, Woolen and Cotton goods (consisting in part of Ticking, 36,000 yards; Standard Calico, 300,000 yards; Drilling, 25,000 yards; Duck, free from all sizing, 175,000 yards; Denims, 17,000 yards; Gingham, 50,000 yards; Kentucky Jeans, 26,000 yards; Satinet, 4,500 yards; Brown Sheeting, 213,000 yards; Bleached Sheeting, 9,000 yards; Hickory Shirting, 12,000 yards; Calico Shirting, 5,000 yards; Winsey, 2,600 yards); Clothing, Groceries, Notions, Hardware, Medical Supplies; and such as Harness, Plows, Rakes, Forks, etc., and for 475 Wagons, required for the service in Arizona, Colorado, Dakota, Idaho, Indian Territory, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, and Wisconsin, to be delivered at Chicago, Kansas City, and Sioux City.
Also, Transportation for such of the Supplies, Goods, and articles that may not be contracted for to be delivered at the Agencies.
BIDS MUST BE MADE OUT ON GOVERNMENT BLANKS.
Schedules showing the kinds and quantities of subsistence supplies required for each Agency, and the kinds and quantities, in gross, of all other goods and articles, together with blank proposals and forms for contract and bond, conditions to be observed by bidders, time and place of delivery, terms of contract and payment, transportation routes, and all other necessary instructions will be furnished upon application to the Indian Office in Washington, or Nos. 65 and 67 Wooster Street, New York; Wm. H. Lyon, No. 483 Broadway, New York; and to the Commissaries of Subsistence, U. S. A., at Chicago, Saint Louis, Saint Paul, Leavenworth, San Francisco, Omaha, Cheyenne, and Yankton, and the Postmaster at Sioux City.
Bids will be opened at the hour and day above stated, and bidders are invited to be present at the opening.
All bids must be accompanied by certified checks upon some United States Depository or Assistant Treasurer, for at least five percent of the amount of the proposal.
THOMAS M. NICHOL,
[OKLAHOMA AND TERRITORY NEWS.]
TRAVELER, MAY 11, 1881 - EDITORIAL PAGE.
OKLAHOMA AND TERRITORY NEWS.
There is not a solitary occupant on the townsite of Oklahoma. A detachment of U. S. soldiers and Indian scouts are camped about five miles above the site, waiting for some one to come, when they will be escorted to the Texas line and turned loose. If they come from Texas, they will be escorted to Kansas, and released; the object being, to have them to see all of the Territory they desire. The trail from Arkansas City is very good and very plain, with crossings on Red Rock, Black Bear, and other creeks. After crossing the Cimaron river, the trail is divided into a hundred or more wagon roads, evidently to prevent the authorities from discovering their whereabouts. The country is beautiful, but the location of the townsite dreary, as it is located in a valley, or draw, with scattering jack oaks all about. One mile further south, or about six miles south of the North Canadian river, on a high, prominent prairie mound, would have made a much prettier location.
Oklahoma--"Home of the Red Man," is just 150 miles from Arkansas City. By going four miles south, 24 miles west, and 108 miles due south, you reach the desired spot, but the deviations on the road makes it foot up 150 miles, or six days drive with a team. The only Indians seen on the route are the Nez Perces, and some Otoes, camped on the Cimaron, until you are greeted by the Cheyenne scouts, who will be glad to meet you, and even care for you.
Some Otoe Indians hunting on the Cimaron river cut down a tree with an eagle's nest on it, and caught five of the young birds.
The recent rains extended through the Territory, as far as 150 miles south. None of the large streams were impassible up to the fifth of this month, but the Cimaron river was rising rapidly.
Thomas E. Berry has been reappointed Indian trader at Pawnee Agency, for another year. The appointment is a good one, and will be satisfactory to both the whites and Indians.
[SOURCE OF ABOVE INFORMATION NOT GIVEN...BUT I SUSPECT IT WAS C. M. SCOTT BECAUSE HE SPELLED THE RIVER "CIMARON."]