Kansas Historical Quarterly - A Tour of Indian Agencies, 1
in Kansas and the Indian Territory in 1870
by William Nicholson
August 1934 (Vol. 3, No. 3), pages 289 to 326
Transcribed by lhn; additional HTML by Susan Stafford;
digitized with permission of the Kansas Historical Society.
CRITICISM of the methods used by the United States government in its dealings with the Indians reached a fever heat in the latter 1860's. Considerable mismanagement was alleged on the part of many agents engaged either officially or unofficially in traffic with the Indians. President U. S. Grant, with a view to correcting these political abuses, delegated the nomination of the Indian agents to the several religious organizations interested in mission work among the Indians.
In his message to Congress delivered December 5, 1870, President Grant said:
Pursuant to the President's instruction, the Society of Friends undertook to select the agents for Nebraska, Kansas, and the Indian territory. At a meeting of "The Associated Executive Committee of Friends on Indian Affairs," held at Damascus, Ohio, May 18,
290 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
1870, the Washington committee reported as follows: "Under authority given us in the first month, we have selected and appointed Dr. William Nicholson as General agent of the Associated Executive Committee."
This branch of the society (Orthodox Friends) appointed several committees to take charge of the missionary work among the Indians. Since it was impossible for all members of the executive committee who were charged especially with the work among the Indians to visit the various agencies under its control and to report their condition and progress, one of its members, Doctor Nicholson, was delegated to perform that duty. He divided his time between Washington and the Central Superintendency, which district included the Indians in Kansas and part of the Indian territory. It was on the first of these inspection tours taken in the fall of 1870 that Doctor Nicholson made the observations in his diary which are here reproduced.
Doctor Nicholson was by vocation a physician. He obtained his medical degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1850 and practiced in the neighborhood of his home at Belvidere, N. C. By avocation, however, he was an active member of the Friends' meeting, and was a leader in what would now be called social service work. His family consisted of his wife Sarah, and two sons, William and George T. The latter was for many years associated with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe railway, and died in 1913, while holding the position of vice president in charge of traffic.
At the close of the Civil War Doctor Nicholson was a delegate to the North Carolina state constitutional convention. Later, while still engaged in his Indian work, he moved to Lawrence where his family joined him. The Report of the Secretary of the Interior publishes a report he made at a conference of missionary societies meeting with the board of Indian commissioners in Washington, D. C., January 11, 1872. The following day, at a convention of representatives of the various religious denominations engaged in the work of Christian civilization among the Indians of the United States, Doctor Nicholson was chosen secretary. On February 1, 1876, he became superintendent of the Central Superintendency and served
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 291
for a term. A copy of a letter from C. Schurz, Secretary of the Interior, dated at Washington, May 6, 1878, acknowledges receipt of a notice from the Associated Executive Committee of Friends on Indian Affairs announcing the appointment of Dr. William Nicholson as their general agent. He was elected to the Kansas house of representatives from Douglas county in 1880.
Mrs. Arthur M. Jordan (Carrie Nicholson Jordan), of Chapel Hill, N. C., daughter of George T. Nicholson and granddaughter of Dr. William Nicholson, recently presented the diary to the Kansas Historical Society for publication and preservation. She writes that Doctor Nicholson "was a tall man, grave and rather serious of mien, and possessed of that gentle dignity which is so often characteristic of the Friends."
The diary itself was recorded in pencil in a pocket-sized daybook bound in black cloth. The first eight pages contained miscellaneous and disconnected memoranda having to do with names of persons desiring employment in the Indian service, notes on Friends churches, and personal expenditures all of which was not deemed of sufficient interest to publish here.
Included in these memoranda, however, were the following notes, obviously set down to guide him in a personal survey of the health of the tribes, and of the provisions made for schools and religious training:
Diseases-of the Lungs, Alimentary Canal, Brain, Skin-acute and chronic
Intermittent & Remittent Fevers
Syphilis primary &c-
Parturition-average duration, difficulties and dangers-
Post parture difficulties, hemorrhage, Child bed fever- Mammary abscess &c Displacement of the Uterus- Frequency of births-- Average number of children-- Age of puberty & period of decline of the Menses-
Treatment during & after labor--
Treatment of new born children
Food of children- Bathing, dress-
Mortality in childhood- Youth & mature age- average of life-
Twin births. Effects of intermarriage amongst themselves and with other races upon vitality, health, & mental & moral characteristics
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Prevalent vices- Intellectual development
Social affections- Conjugal affection- parental- filial- tribal.
Loyalty to their chiefs or other powers of government- Physical- endurance of pain- fear of death
Religion-Ideas of a Supreme Being and of a future state- Sin and atonement- Strength of their feeling of moral obligation
Civilization- grade- tendency whether upwards or downwards-
Government--form-laws- enforcement & enactment
Physical development- Muscular- nervous- bony- fatty- Color- hair- beard- teeth
Language- Marriage- Burial &c- Increase or decrease-
Name of Agency- Agent and address-
Location, bounds & size of reservation
Number of persons in each tribe-
Lands in severalty or common. If both in what proportion-
Do they follow the chase
Any schools- Who conduct them How are they supported- To what denomination are the Teachers attached- Average no. in Schools Number of children receiving instruction- Number in all of a suitable age to go to school
Does Government provide any support to schools- Any school for special religious instruction
Any openings for schools-
Aid in agriculture from the Government- Treaties in force-
Is their location regarded as permanent.
The first entry in the diary proper was dated on October 4, 1870, at the Kaw Agency in Kansas, and it is here the following reproduction begins. The portion printed is a connected narrative of Doctor Nicholson's tours of inspection from this date to December 28, 1870. In it he described his visits to agencies in eastern Kansas and the Indian territory, made comparative estimates of the industry, morals, customs, sanitation, health, and religious activities of the various tribes on the reservations, and impartially recorded the attitude of the white man-the trader, the missionary, the soldier, the Indian agent and the settler-toward the Indian. Interspersed were copious accounts of his attendance at religious gatherings, in nearly all of which he took a leading part.
Lawrence, the headquarters of the Central Superintendency, was the starting point for these inspection tours. Kansas agencies were visited first. In the latter part of October he left for the Indian territory or what is now Oklahoma, via Humboldt and Chetopa. In the territory he visited in turn the agencies of the Delaware, Osage, Sac and Fox, Shawnee, Cheyenne and Arapahoe, Wichita, Kiowa and Comanche, Chickasaw, Seminole, and Creek Indians.
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 293
He arrived at Okmulgee on December 5 and attended the adjourned session of the first general council of the Indian territory where, with other United States Indian officials, he advised the assembled Indian delegates. A provision was made in the Indian treaties of 1866 for the establishment of this council of all the tribes resident in the Indian territory. For various reasons the council was not called until September 27, 1870. After a four-day meeting it adjourned until December when a proposed constitution for the Indian territory was reported, considered and ordered to be submitted to the several tribal councils for ratification or rejection. Delegates from the Cherokee, Creek, Ottawa, Shawnee, Quapaw, Seneca, Wyandotte, Peoria, Sac and Fox, Osage, Seminole, Chickasaw and Choctaw tribes were in attendance.
Doctor Nicholson has faithfully recorded the proceedings of this adjourned meeting and has summarized the chief provisions of the new constitution. Many hoped that the machinery set up at this meeting would make the Indian territory a regularly organized territory of the union, with a legislature, a delegate in Congress, and all the usual offices of a civil government. But the Okmulgee constitution, as the document framed by the council came to be known, was never ratified by the legislatures of the several civilized tribes and congress failed to act upon it.
After the council's adjournment Doctor Nicholson and party set out for Lawrence via Fort Gibson and Chetopa. He arrived there on December 28 and left immediately for the East, abandoning his diary for a time.
Daily entries were regularly resumed in the diary on April 14, 1871, two days after he returned to Lawrence. He again took up his work in the Central Superintendency as the general agent of the Associated Executive Committee of (Orthodox) Friends on Indian Affairs. Entries were continued until June 24, 1871, when the book was filled, but his daily notations were briefer, less connected and more concerned with personal affairs than formerly; hence they will not be included in the two installments of the diary published in this and the November issues. Doctor Nicholson records several visits to Friends meetings during these two months. Several more pages were devoted to names, addresses, and qualifications of persons seeking employment.
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II. ENTRIES FROM THE DIARY:
OCTOBER 4 TO DECEMBER 28, 1870
10 mo. 4 -1870
Kaw Agency-Mahlon Stubbs, Agent Mahlon Newlin, Trader Joseph Newson, Farmer. Nathan & Mary Ann Pinson, Teachers--Address Council Grove, Kansas.
Reservation 9 Miles N & S by 14 E & West-traversed by Neosho River from NW to S. E-about one third valley land-remainder bluff & high prairie- the latter poor- Missouri, Kansas & Texas R. Road traverses the reservation on the East side of the Neosho--with right of way & privilege of timber--
Kaws-the company [illegible] $ [uncertain] for timber- The annuity of the tribe is $10,000-payment annual- They trade beforehand to the amount due each & so the money passes directly into the hands of the trader who furnishes his own capital- The quality of the goods is excellent & the tribe has been well fed this year.
(The Kaw delegation of 1866 left the facts on file at Washington concerning annuity due said tribe by default of Agent & sureties. Said facts were set forth in a treaty made in 1866 but not ratified. The treaty made with R. R. Company in 1869 acknowledges that $18000 are due them & should draw interest, if the Kaws have to pay interest on their indebtedness.
Dickey, Agent about 1857 or 58 used funds appropriated for benefit of Indians when they left Topeka about 1859- Treaty left with Mix, who has facts- Montgomery preceded Dickey & is accused of making a false pay roll & getting $2000- Treaty of 1866 (withdrawn) acknowledges interest & principal about $23000)
Their Buffalo hunt was successful having captured about 50(1 last winter & an equal number this summer. They will go again this fall- Their corn, beans & pumpkins are more than usual, notwithstanding the dry weather- They are busily engaged in drying these for winter- A few of them live separately in the houses built by Government, but most of them are in their own wigwams in villages. Houses are warm & dry-made of bark or buffalo hides opening at top for smoke & light & at each side (if large) for entrance the latter closed with buffalo skin when necessary- No stock but ponies & dogs- A very few keep pigs- Make their own
NICHOLSON: TOUR. OF INDIAN AGENCIES 295
saddles. two forks are selected & then side pieces & all covered with raw hide & highly ornamented sometimes with brass tacks &c. Lariette ropes are sometimes made of horse hair- first twisted into small strands & then 5 or 6 twisted into a rope 3/4 inch in diameter.
They are addicted to horse racing betting ponies, blankets & even their shirts sometimes- They often have dances- Most of them have shirts & leggings-the latter sometimes of flannel & sometimes of buffalo skin Their moccasins are mostly of the latter material as some of them highly ornamented with beadwork- All wear breach cloths & blankets- Some of them have very fanciful dresses One had a head band of nice fur (otter) over the forehead was beadwork in the shape of two infant's hands, on each side was a buffalo horn, one painted red, the other green, & a long strip of otter fur descended from the back part down nearly to the floor & highly -ornamented with tape &c- Their ears have 4 perforations each & sometimes each perforation is loaded with an assemblage of trinkets. Faces painted red with blue & black streaks- They must suffer much from wet feet- hair is mostly cut close or shaven except on the top of the head. Women have long hair, but dress much as the men- The men pull out their beard with spiral wire pressing the coil over their faces & compressing the spiral & pulling it- hair black & coarse-teeth mostly good & White but concealed by the lips.
They are polygamous & put away their wives when they please- & these divorced wives can marry again- Wives can leave their husbands also-but if a man steals another's wife, he is liable to summary vengeance- Men purchase their wives and at a very early age--girls of 12 or 14 are often sold & thus it is difficult to secure the attendance of girls at School- They have something of a marriage ceremony- The bridegroom takes his presents to the parents of the bride A crier calls for objections if there be any R then they proceed to the wedding feast
Parturition is attended with some difficulties & dangers, but probably with no greater than with white women They are usually up & around soon after perhaps the next day- During the process they walk about sit or lie according to their own preference- Very many children die in infancy- they are poorly cared for often-tied upon a board for some months & then tucked under the blanket between the woman's shoulders- Very many of the children are Scrofulous Enlarged-indurated & suppuration [of] cervical glands or cicatrices of previous suppuration- I saw several afflictions of
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the skin which seemed to be syphilitic- Many are marked with Small pox & I think it important that the tribe be vaccinated again -the last vaccination was totally unsuccessful.
The greatest mortality amongst the adults is in Spring- Pneumonia is the most fatal disease. Whenever a man gets very sick, they are apt to despair of his recovery & so they cover him closely with blankets & almost suffocate him to death rather helping him along to the happy hunting ground- Their custom is to bury without coffins & to put the clothing, bow & arrows & many small articles into the grave, with a plate of food & after the grave is filled they choke a pony to death over it & leave it there.
They believe in a resurrection of the dead & think the person will need all these things when he comes to life again. The physical development of very many of the men is very good-stout muscular frame. But the majority are rather under size- Very many have a good proportion of the fatty constituents of the frame-but the most are lean looking-altho they have recently been well fed- I suppose protracted exposure to inclemencies of weather and irregularities in the supply of wholesome food have gradually interfered with proper nutrition &c- I presume that Pneumonia could be less frequent amongst them if their clothing & food were better--their moccasins do not keep their feet dry--& their blankets & leggings are a poor substitute for close fitting coats & pantaloons but they will not wear white men's clothes- They are quite indisposed to adopt the habits of civilized life.
Unchastity is a very prevalent vice amongst the females. They do not have a very strict regard for truth, especially in matters of trade- They have not a great respect for the rights of property though not notoriously thievish.
Their conjugal attachment is not strong-but parental and filial affection is well developed- Their form of Government is now republican-the head chief is elected once in 4 years & their Council men once a year- Their religion is monotheistic-& they sometimes subject themselves to punishments to atone for sin or appease the displeasure of the Great Spirit. They have no ideas of a Savior or Redeemer- When a great man is dying they try to help him bear his suffering by afflicting themselves-cutting themselves &c, &c-
In smoking they frequently puff the first whiff of smoke upwards as an offering of thankfulness to the Great Spirit- Previous to their hunts they go through with various ceremonies to secure the
NICHOLSON: TOUR of INDIAN AGENCIES 297
help of the Great Spirit in their expedition- Möbegu Kinnekin- nick--
In smoking they mix sumach leaves with the tobacco in the process of smoking they inhale the smoke into the lungs & force it through the nasal passages in expiration- Some of their hatchets or tomahawks have a pipe in the hammer part & the handle has a canal through it communicating with the pipe-the end of the handle is shaped to be put into the mouth-handle of hickory the pith being burned out-when one has smoked awhile he passes it to another & he to another & so on. The men nearly all use tobacco in some way- The women seldom use it. The School is not very encouraging-average 20
The superintendent has $100 for each scholar & is responsible for all expenses- The parents do not like for their children to go to school & the children often run away & go home- By allowing them to go home once a fortnight & then going after them in a wagon, some gain has been made. But the great trouble is when they leave school their friends & others make so much fun of them that they soon drop English language & citizens dress & go back into Indian habits- It is doubtful whether the boarding School system is best unless the children can be kept permanently away from the tribe. By establishing day schools, the children might not seem to improve so rapidly, but the older people would be lifted up with them & the children become accustomed to association at the same time with both teachers & Indians & thus be able to act out the lessons taught in the School before their own people.
The annual payment of the Kaws occurred on the 6th of 10 mo. & was made by their agent, assisted by A. C. Farnham, Chief Clerk of Supt. Hoag. They have been in the habit of trading to the amount of $10. for each individual in advance of their payment & so of course the money passes directly into the hands of the trader. The $10. each does not exhaust the annuity now & usually they divide the surplus & receive it in money- But owing to scarcity of provisions the last winter, they all agreed, with consent of the Superintendent to take it up in advance, in flour, coffee, sugar &c. &c. & so their surplus of $1080 was also due to the trader- This being different from their usage, although they had fully consented to it & had received the full benefit of the arrangement, seemed at first to make them dissatisfied-they wanted the $1080 divided amongst themselves & seemed to dislike very much to see it paid over to the trader- The whole thing had to be repeatedly explained to them
298 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
& then they waited a long time before the chief & councilmen would sign the pay roll. At last they told the trader that he must. roll out some presents to them-that the old traders did &c &c-he told them he would give them some crackers & tobacco & then they signed & went out to receive their presents They soon had the boxes opened and the articles were regularly and systematically divided- One head man divided the tobacco into 2 equal parts & gave each part into the hands of another & so on & another head man divided the crackers in the same way & they soon were all ready to start home except a few who lingered about the agency to get their supper. The former traders were in the habit of putting on about 100 per cent then to keep the good side of the Indians, they made presents of trinkets, tobacco &c- Under the present. policy of giving good articles at a moderate profit, the trader cannot afford to make many presents and altho' the Indians are delighted with the quality & quantity of their goods, they cannot seem to understand why the trader now will not make presents & incline to think him selfish, stingy & unfriendly to them & in these notions they are encouraged by persons around them who are unfriendly to the present arrangement & who lose no opportunity of making the Indians dissatisfied with their present agent & trader &c.
The difference in language often gives rise to difficulty from simple misunderstanding.
Another thing which gave dissatisfaction at the payment was that the Railroad company had failed to pay what it owed the Indians for wood. The most of them had traded out their full portion of this money & of course did not care, but a few had not traded all of theirs & so they insisted that the trader should pay them the balance- This he was unwilling to do, for he had already furnished goods for the principal portion & in case of a failure of the R. R: Company, he (the trader) would lose that & he did not feel justified in paying out cash for the balance-- Shegincah & several others seemed very much out of humor about it- The contract with the Company was only to run 12 mos. & was limited to getting ties for that part of the road in the reservation- But Robt. Stevens, the Company's agent, wrote the contract without limit as to quantity-so that the company got some advantage unjustly, & as to how much timber they got there is no means of knowing except their own statement
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 299
10 mo. 7th 1870
To-day they met to enrol-but wanted a council first-Allaga-Wa-hu their chief made a long speech & seemed to dwell upon the fact that they merely saw their money but never handled it-that the trader got it all &c- This was all explained again & again. Then they wanted a conference amongst themselves- So we retired- And when recalled, they said they wanted to trade, but not to be credited for their annuity they wanted to save that & have it in money-but wanted the trader to let them have goods & they would go off upon the hunt. & pay him in furs- He told them he was not willing to trade in that way but if they brought any furs he would buy them. They then declined to enrol & so after considerable conversation they went to their homes-
If the Kaw Reservation be sold at $2.50 per acre it will amount to $201,600. Their trust lands will pay their indebtedness- Their new reservation in the Indian Territory will cost $46,000, leaving $155,520.
10 mo. 8th 1870
Kaw Council. Allaga, wâ hu the head Chief absent on account of sickness of his mother in law. The subject of their removal to the Indian Territory, west of 96° on Cherokee Lands-their new reservation to contain 160 acres for each individual of their tribe was opened by reading a letter from Indian Office at Washington & one from Supt. Hoag's Office & a clause of Cherokee treaty. Various important considerations were brought to their attention by Agent Stubbs. They talked over the measure & desired until the 10th to talk with their people & are to report at that time.
10 mo. 10th
The Council with the head chief & a large number of the tribe met & had the whole subject again explained to them by the Agent. They then took an hour or more for consultation & when we were recalled Allagawâhhu the head chief made a speech in which he said they had concluded to send a delegation of the Kaws & half breeds with the Agent to view the country & if they liked it they would be willing to go. They wished to see the country &. know about the water & the trees & to scratch the land to see if it would bring corn &c-that they wanted good land so they could walk the white man's road, follow the plow &.c-that if their Great Father could move their present land and river and timber all down there, they would go all together at once but as they would have to leave their present good land they wanted to see whether they could find more as good
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as that is. They wanted to sell their land directly to their Great Father. Did not want to bargain with any body else &c. They wanted to go down there to see the country at once while the leaves were green & did not want to wait until they would have to dig under the snow to see what kind of soil it was. He wanted to live like white men and did not wish to have anything to do with the wild southern red men, alluding to Cheyennes, Arapahoes, Kiowas, Comanches &c-said they would come and eat with the Kaws out of the same spoon & sit by the same fire & then go off & shoot them. He did not want to mix with them. He wanted to follow his plow with the white man & if the wild Indians killed him at his plow, he wanted his children still to follow the plow & to be the white man's friend- Wa-pah-gu followed him in confirmation- Ca-wal-o gu (the giant of the tribe in stature) followed in the same strain & so did Fool-Chief & Pa-du-cah-gah-lu. After some remarks from the Agent & some of us congratulating them upon the harmony and excellent conclusions of their council, they were again requested to consider the subject of enrollment & they agreed to come tomorrow and enrol & so separated in good humor. They had seemed very unsettled for several days. The days were rainy & during their last council the sky cleared- So their mental condition coincided with the weather-Post hoc sic non propter hoc.
Paducahgahlu wishes me to send him a copy of the treaty which he signed He gave it to Mix at Washington
Joseph James, Interpreter of Kaw Indians-a half breed
Frank James-a brother
Jos. Dunlap U. S. Marshall
Huffaker, former trader
We gave the Indians all the encouragement we could to send their children to school whilst the delegation went to view the country & whilst many others of them went to the Buffalo hunt.
10 mo. 11th
Left Kaw Agency- Took train at Big John, a flag station in front of Agency buildings-on my way to Lawrence via Emporia & Topeka, to consult with Enoch Hoag, who I learned has returned from Ind. Territory. Stayed at Topeka.
In Kaw language Yolly means "Good"- Edodge means the Agent or Father Williamson, Ch. Clerk in financial department of the Interior Office 50 millions
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 301
Clum, Chief Clerk of Commissioner Parker- New York Indians have 32 certificates for Land patents for land near Ft Scott, now occupied by settlers-1 certificate is in Neosho Agency-the others in Department at Washington, filed by Agent G. C. Snow-
Young officer Thompson at Ft Gibson-intimate friend & room mate of Lieut. Whipple at Pottawattomie, stationed at Ft Riley.
[Quapaw, Seneca and Shawnee Reservations]
10 mos 12-left Topeka at 4.30 A. M. for Lawrence-found Edwd. Earle on train who had been to Pottawatomie Agency looking for me- Met Enoch Hoag & Asa Tuttle at Lawrence Depot & so we all went on together to Baxter Springs. Arrived at night & found John D. Lang one of the President's unpaid Commission & [incompleted]
10 mo. 13 We all (except A. C. Tuttle who took stage for his school) left Baxter for the Quapaw who were to receive their payment by Williamson the Government Agent, commissioned as paymaster- This payment is of $90,000, as provided in last Indian Appropriation Bill as indemnity to the Indians of the Quapaws & Shawnees Senecas, & mixed Senecas & Quapaws for losses sustained during the war in the destruction of their stock & other property. Genl James Blunt bargained with these Indians to endeavor to secure indemnification for these losses, for one third of the amount secured. He says he succeeded in getting Article XII reinserted into the Omnibus treaty with various tribes after it had been stricken out. by the Senate's Committee on Ind. Affairs- That it was shown there had been a quasi treaty with these Indians & the Confederate Government which prejudiced their claim & had to be satisfactorily explained & that he was at a great deal of loss of time & spent a great deal of money in securing the claim That he has paid out $6000 & may have to pay out 10000 more. And that he does not think he will make a very big thing of it &c- It seemed to all of us a very large per cent and whilst I did not feel at all like encouraging the Indians to repudiate their obligation I tried to prevail upon Gen Blunt to return to them a few thousand doll- for Educational purposes. I think the whole thing had been carefully explained to them- They sent voluntarily to Genl Blunt to get him to press their claim & each of them had signed an agreement to give him one third of what he could secure for them & if he did not secure anything he was to have nothing- This had been care
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fully explained repeatedly by their Interpreter & seemed to be fully understood
Two Commissioners had been sent out by the Government to pass upon the claims & had made out an amount of $110,000 or about that- The claim of about 12000 was rejected as the woman had gone amongst the Cherokees or Creeks to reside & the amount was cut down to $90,000 by Congress- Secretary Cox had commissioned Williamson to pay this money to each claimant according to the roll- I had no authority to control the money after it had passed from Williamson's hands- So it was handed to the Indian-he passed it to the Agent Mitchell; he paid the traders' claims & handed over 33 1/3 per cent to Genl Blunt & the balance was given back to the Indian- There seems to be no way to regulate the amount charged by these claim agents unless Congress will pass some law to regulate it. All business of the Indians ought to be transacted through their regular Agents who are directly responsible to Government & no percent charged, as these agents are paid for their services by the Government- But it has become so much the habit of Govt to delay payments justly due unless there is some one present at Washington to prosecute claims that it has given rise to the present system of claim Agents & attorneys in the Indian Department Pension office-Land office &c & there is real difficulty in getting anything done except through these agencies & thus the claimants have to sacrifice a considerable part to secure the balance- This system also gives rise to the presentation of false claims & monied influence often prevails to get these false claims allowed- This is really a great business & the country is often cheated out of large amounts.
These Quapaws, Senecas &c are very poor-and very much in need of schools- They mostly dress as citizens-and are very desirous of having schools- They are self supporting and are beginning to get cattle, horses &c all of which they lost in the war. Many of them speak English- The Ottawas have a school taught by A. C. Tuttle & wife & the Peorias have a house nearly ready and a young man John Collins Isaacs, has come from Philada. to teach their school- Philada. Friends have furnished $1000 for the Ottawa School & will assist some in the Peoria School- J. M. Hiatt assisted by Lindly Pickering have opened a store at the Agency. Many of these people go to Seneca a town in Missouri & get whiskey - Their greatest and most urgent need is to have good schools-
We met on the 14th of 10 Mo- Paymaster Williamson (Jas. A.)
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 303
Jocnic &-Pilkinton sent by Secretary Cox to make the payment. Genl Blunt, Agent Mitchell & they commenced the payment in the afternoon- J. D. Lang and E. Hoag left for Baxter- E. Earle & myself remained.
These Indians are greatly advanced above the condition of the wild tribes- They are very decently clothed and the women look altogether better than the Kaw women- The Agent's wife speaks very highly of their good qualities & their anxiety to learn, in cooking making clothing &c- She had an Indian woman assisting her in her household duties- She seems to take a real interest in the welfare of these people & is certainly a superior lady- I am persuaded that she has a deep Christian solicitude for their real improvement- At night they gathered around their camp fire & some of them engaged in what they called a dance-which was much like a children's game- A circle of them kept moving around the fire & kept up a sort of tune-the drummer beating his drum at the same time- Drum made of a churn with Buckskin stretched over the head of it- They did not move the feet much in the dance except in moving around the fire-most of the motion being in a rapid movement of the knee & ankle joints Some of the women joined in the exercise- The Senecas are a decidedly religious people but have not been instructed in Christianity- Once a year they offer a dog in Sacrifice- They select a white male dog-keep him shut up & as clean as possible feed him highly so that he shall be very fat & at the proper time he is killed & suspended & a fire kindled under him & as he burns & the smoke ascends, they say their prayers & express their gratitude & they believe that. these prayers & praises ascend upon the Smoke to the Great Spirit and they believe that He hears them. An instance was related to me in which this sacrifice was made in time of great drought & they prayed for rain & very shortly the rain came, as they believe in answer to their prayer. They are superstitious & have somewhat objected to Schools-partly because the Christian religion is not exemplified in the character of a large part of the white people with whom they have been brought into contact. They consider white people as the representatives of Christianity & they judge of the system by the character of those whom they consider its representatives- This is perfectly natural-but very unfortunate. How much they need the constant presence of solid, earnest loving Christians to live amongst them & teach them by example as well as by precept- I believe that Lindly Pickering & John Milton
304 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
Hiatt and John Collins Isaacs appreciate these things and are very desirous of securing the confidence of these Indians by an upright Christian example and precept- But a few earnest Christian women thoroughly practical and of industrious domestic habits-refined and desirous of doing good to these people would effect wonders amongst them- These people have the basis for a very solid character, if they can be rightly cared for & the object should not be to combat directly their superstitious notions, but to teach them the better way by example in connection with instruction & this is rendered peculiarly necessary because of the bad example which white people have set before them & by which they have been confirmed in the superior excellence of their own religious & social system. These Indians have but one wife & are usually faithful in their conjugal relations. One of their most remarkable moral characteristics is honesty-a sacred regard for their promises.
The payment was resumed on the 15th. We remained until 3 o'clock having witnessed about 150 payments-the entire number being about 176. We then had to leave & rode 16 miles to Wm Hills & next morning through the rain 8 miles to Spring River Meeting- Stopped at Moses [omission] and got warm & dry as there was no fire at the meeting house.
(Genl James Blunt & McBracney McBradly [McBratney?] are Agents for the Eastern Band of Cherokees in N. Carolina & are endeavoring to secure for them their portion of the tribal funds & annuities of the Cherokee nation- The suit of this Band against their old Agent Thomas, to secure their lands which he purchased & took title in his own name & whose creditors are now driving those Indians from their homes-cannot be prosecuted because Congress failed to make any Appropriation for the costs- I wish to examine at Washington the whole matter of these Indians & their relations with their old Agent & with the Cherokee Nation & the historical facts bearing upon the cause of their remaining in N. Carolina. They receive no annuities-beyond the interest on an Appropriation made for the purpose of [omission]).
Cherokee treaty of 186__ cannot be ratified because of the influence of lobbyists-- The claim of Eastern Cherokees is for hundreds of thousands
Samuel Valier- Chief & Interpreter of Quapaws
Spicer, do. do. of Senecas
Spring River, Sub Agency--
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 305
George Mitchell Agent
Asa C. Tuttle
via Baxter, Kansas-
14 miles- S. West from Baxter- Stage leaves Southern Hotel at Baxter on mornings of 3rd 5th & 7th days-
10 mo 16-
Edward Earls & myself attended the meeting at Spring River, but the day was so stormy that not more than 20 persons were presence We dined at Moses [omission] & then went through the storm in an open wagon to Timber Hills meeting, held at present in the house of Amos W. Hampton-a minister- Here we met at 4 o'clock a company of perhaps 40 or 50 who braved the Storm to attend the meeting- It was an interesting meeting.
Several communications, besides what I felt called to offer- We were very kindly entertained at A. W. Hampton's by himself & wife--& next morning the storm being heavy still we concluded to abide with them until it should moderate- We have some opportunity of witnessing the discouragements which beset the people in this new country- The prospect is fair that after a long & hard scuffle they will be able to realize the fruits of their labor-but at present it is a hard time with them- They are very much in need of good meeting houses in various neighborhoods but as their lumber has to be brought from Chicago by railroad, building is very expensive. We met here Thomas Smith formerly of Iowa, who was once one of the United Brethren but has now become a member of our Society. He appeared in Supplication in the meeting at this house- We also met Selinda Johnson, formerly of Eastern Ohio- She also spoke a little in the meeting & was engaged in supplication in a sitting in the evening. There are many persons, not Friends, who would be glad to go to Friends meetings if there was room for them in the meeting houses, & thus good houses would here very much tend to build up the Society & promote its usefulness
10 mo. 18-Amos W. Hampton took us to Columbus, as the storm had moderated- It is about 15 miles above Baxter Springs & is a Suitable place to leave the train for one who goes down from Kansas City to visit the settlements of Friends in Spring River Quarter. It is 6 miles from Timber Hills meeting.
306 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
The R. Road from St. Louis to Pierce City may be extended so as to intersect at Columbus &c.
At Lawrence- meeting- correspondence
Letter to J. B. Garrett.
Box of books No. 1-distributed to Ottawas & Peorias- No. 2-Laurie Tatum- No. 3 Sac & Foxes Kickapoos & Wichitas, Caddoes
Three boxes are desired at once- 1 for Darlington's Agency- 1 for Quapaws & Wyandottes-& 1 for general distribution- Elementary books desired & charts & cards- No second readers wanted
Clothing to be sent to E. Hoag- Calico for Comforts a cheaper article for lining & batting for wadding for the Ind. women to make up.
Suggest that meeting of the Committee be 26th of 12 month. Grand Council meets on
5th of 12 mo-
John B. Garrett
217 Church St.
[School for the Ottawa Indians]
Asa C. Tuttle and wife Emmeline (formerly Howard,) are doing an excellent work amongst the Ottawa Indians. Their School is about 14 miles S. West of Baxter and averages 26-
Their influence upon the tribe in favor of religion & morality have already been very marked- It had been a universal practice with the men & boys to carry pistols- The boys brought them to school- After a time Emmeline felt that she must speak to them about it and they told their parents & the Chief Judge Wynn. The council considered the subject & her reasons for her desire in the matter and they passed a law not only forbidding boys to carry pistols but men also & thus the entire habit of the tribe in this respect has been reformed- She was much concerned also that they should have proper regulations concerning marriage and proper views concerning chastity &c- The results of the labors of these missionaries is a good marriage law & several parties have come to Asa and requested him to join them legally as man & wife-he being a minister of the Gospel. Some of these parties had been living to-
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 307
gether but were not married. This brought him into something of a strait but after having talked to them so much upon the subject, he felt that it was right and so in a solemn & religious manner he has performed the marriage ceremony, as nearly in conformity with our practice as circumstances would admit- The opportunities have been often remarkably serious and impressive-He speaking to them in ministry & for them in prayer and they being tendered to tears-- There has been a great deal of sickness amongst them & many deaths- A physician is very much needed there and a house for the Teachers- Their boarding place is very unsuitable. It does not protect them from rain- They have both been very sick do are still feeble- Something should be done to make them more comfortable else they will utterly break down- I do not remember ever to have felt more forcibly the force of our Savior's saying "The fields are already white unto harvest," than when visiting the Indians of the Spring River Agency- I advised Enoch to have a house built for them as there are appropriations which can be used for this purpose- He has made out no schedule yet for the distribution of the $60,000, because he has never received any direction from the Indian Bureau concerning it. Commissioner Parker told me more than a month ago that he had directed E. H. to make out the Schedule- But the direction was never received by E. H
10 mo. 21st.
Just before retiring for the night- Oh, Lord, give to me, to my wife and to my Georgia & Willie, an interest in thee and in thy salvation- I ask this before wealth or any earthly gift-
Edward Earls attended the payment of the Peorias who had become citizens & had drawn their share of the tribal funds, amounting to over $72000- It took place at Paoli, Kansas & was made by paymaster Williamson- Major Baptists, Chief of the Peorias, had one tenth for his services in getting the money drawn from the Treasury- He is an intelligent man of some wealth-speaks English well, has a fine farm-nice house, an intelligent wife & Edward says he has seldom a better dinner than she set before them. He lodged with them and spoke of the bed, parlor &c as indicating that they were under the care of a skilful housekeeper- Many of these citizen Peorias are skilful farmers and some of them are well edu
308 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
cated evincing the capacity of the Indian for civilization even when surrounded by very adverse influences
Miami Indians HR. 2347 June 27, 1870-Bill read twice in House of Representatives
* * * * * * * *
10 mo 23-E. Hoag & wife & E. Earle & myself went to Hesper & attended the meeting there- It was large & lively.
I spoke from the text, "I beseech you brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto Him" &c- There were several other testimonies and supplication- We dined with Wm & Penelope Gardiner & had the company of Winslow & Margaret Davis, Dr. Reuben L. Roberts & wife Rebecca (formerly Jucks) & other Friends- also met David Davis & wife-the former a young man who went with us upon part of our journey in N. Carolina some years ago & the latter a daughter of the widow Hill below Springfield, N. C.- Hesper is 10 or 12 miles a little South of East from Lawrence & 4 miles South of Eudora. A nice rolling country & thickly settled by Friends. The meeting there is a highly interesting one, containing a goodly proportion of the old, the middle aged & the young- Returned to Lawrence about dark- Eudora is at the mouth of Wakarusha River where it enters the Kansas-
[Chippewa and Munsee Reservation]
10 mo 24
Chippewas & Munsees 63 in all $15.00 to each individual $113.80 surplus for painting schoolhouse, firewood for School &c Payment was made at the Mission 6 miles southwest of Ottawa Ignatius Caleb, the Muncy chief-thinks they would like to go amongst Cherokees-they like to live here and want to be in peace with white people & to follow the Christian ways-but their cattle sometimes go off the reservation & white people shoot them and they have no redress in the law the white people cut their timber & they have no redress in law- He feels thankful to the Lord for the little payment they are to receive & for all their other blessings-- but says they are constantly diminishing in numbers & they would rather be associated with some larger & stronger tribe. These Indians are well dressed The women are as neatly attired as the same number of white women collected in the country- They have a school conducted by Romig, a Moravian-
NICHOLSON : TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 309
Donahu spoke on behalf the Indians- He says the settlers have squatted upon some of the land and are not willing to pay the value of the Land- He thinks the Indians would like to be here & be citizens that they may have the protection of law-that each one may have a patent for his land so he can sell it for its full value & give a permanent title.
A part of their land has been sold under their last treaty (perhaps '54 or '56) & more of it might be, if, the Secretary of the Interior would advertise it These Indians are diminishing in part from the remains of syphilitic disease.
The tribe was once very deeply tainted with this affection & it prevents fecundity & causes the loss of a great proportion of the children- They are now greatly improved in their morals and most of them are professors of Christianity Romig & his wife are located amongst them by the Moravians. The Indians do not pay them anything, except the use of a dwelling & a farm of 15 acres. Their labors have doubtless been of great service, to the tribes but unless they are moved to the vicinity of a larger tribe & intermarry they will soon run out- Constant intermarriage in so narrow a circle and that an unhealthy circle tends to a constant physical deterioration- I saw one case, of what was probably syphilitic laryngitis in a child 18 months old- I suppose it was hereditary syphilis.
10 mo. 25th
Went to St. Mary's-in the Pottawattomie Reservation and were kindly entertained by Dr. Palmer-who was formerly agent here. Williamson, paymaster, had not arrived- We found here a collection of Indians & white people-some said to be of a very poor grade morally-all waiting the payment.
We went to the Catholic Mission-were admitted into the girls' school room, about 80, 20 of whom were day Scholars-Most of them where white children- The Indians do not send their children much now. It is the same with the male department. They are putting up large brick buildings now for each sex & will have accommodations for many students- They have a farm of 1200 or more acres of very good land-keep 100 cows-raise wheat enough for the use of the establishment-also apples, peaches & vegetables.
310 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
The buildings are very close to the railroad & farm on both sides of it- The view southwards from the hill above the building is very fine reaching for 25 or 30 miles beyond the Kansas River, which runs about 2 miles and a half south of the Institution.
The payment is a division of the funds to those of the Pottawattomies who have become citizens-amounting to $680 ($525,000 in all) for each individual- Many of these are good farmers & doing well-but many others are intemperate and will not take care of their money- It is thought the whole tribe will soon be ready to go to the Indian Territory- There is not much hope of their improving where they are- Their most fatal disease is pneumonia- Consumption is very common- There is a good deal of Scrofula Syphilis is also prevalent especially with the Citizen & half breeds Parturition is attended with comparatively little difficulty either at the time or subsequently- At the menstrual period, women separate themselves from society & in the advanced stages of pregnancy the woman is placed in a house by herself and not visited by her husband or any one except some of the elderly women- She has little or no assistance in the process. Children are treated in the same way as the Kaws treat theirs- Very many children die before the second year- There are very few old people amongst them- Intemperance, sensuality -untruthfulness, are prevalent-The Prairie band are blanket Indians & live much like the Kaws- Parental & filial affection well developed-Conjugal attachment not very strong- Husbands & wives often separate- They are not polygamous- The office of chief is hereditary. They have some tribal laws. Have a marriage ceremony. Their religion is monotheistic and they make a sort of offering of their first fruits- They believe in a future state of existence happy for the good & miserable for the bad- Bury soon after death-in boxes-with prepared food in the box- They always manifest great seriousness & reverence when they speak of the Great Spirit. There does not seem to be much opening for educational work amongst them as they are looking towards removal.
(Joseph N. Bóurassâ--(Búr-ra-saw) U States Interpreter for Pottawattomies.)
These Indians show the bad effects of Annuity payments. They sit and wait for their money and then use it badly.
In this payment 10 per cent is charged by George Young, Dr. Palmer & Mr Bertrand, for the portion which they obtain & 12 pr cent for the portion obtained by Major Ross-Col Murphy
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 311
Wilmarth &c. These firms join together and work in concert. They have been working for years to get the Government to make this payment They used 6 per cent of the 12 per cent claims upon members of Congress (Pomeroy-Clarke-&c. &c.) and about $2000 or more upon clerks in the Department of the Interior- Irving & Clum would not accept anything.
The Michigan or Wisconsin Pottawattomies numbered 250 a few years ago- $25,000.
Shaw-gue-now blind- was once a chief and a very eloquent orator- Has been to Washington
About 150 Pottawattomies strayed off about 1861 & are supposed to be about the Wichita Mountains- They were allotted Indians & have some of the best land allotted to them on [omission] Creek Some of the principal men are Big Kickapoo or Capt John--homin- Pame-je yah Niscod nemma.
* * * * * * * * * * *
Black Beaver says they went to Mexico with the wandering Kickapoos
* * * * * * * * * * *
Capt John or Big Kickapoo--Shomin (dead). Pame-je-yah Nis cod nemma-dead
These stray Pottawattomies are entitled to all the privileges of the tribe. Might get certificates of citizenship, patents for their land & their share of the tribal funds
Afternoon-Williams arrived & commenced payment- Each Indian receives his portion from the paymaster hands it to E. Earle to be counted again directs him to pay to Dr Palmer the 12 pr cent for the agents who secured the appropriation & takes the balance- Most of them deposit their money with bankers who are here from Topeka-as it is unsafe for them to undertake to keep it themselves-as there are thieves, pickpockets, and robbers around watching their opportunity. There are many saloons & gambling houses-and there is no law against selling whiskey to those Indians who have become citizens Hence those who undertake to carry their money will be likely to lose it. Counterfeit money men are usually on hand ready to change money for the Indians & pass off their spurious bills-as many of the Indians receive large amounts
312 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
and many $100 bills- The head of a family draws for each of his children as well as for his wife & himself It thus happens that one man often draws a large amount
10 mo. 27th-
Louis Vieux (View) the crier- Saml Nevoir, one of the business Committee very intelligent but intemperate.
Payment continued- The paymaster closed payment at dark last night, because it was not considered safe. There was a large class of bad men known to have collected in town & it was supposed some of the Indians would be robbed, in going from the office to the camp after receiving their money- Lieut Whipple had charge of the guard-he is now stationed at Ft. Riley, but for two years, has been at Key West Dr. Gabby & Lewis Ogee drew a part of the percentage- At noon we left for Lawrence to prepare for our journey to Ind. Territory
Mr Smith, Banker at Topeka-Mr. Laslie-Banker St Mary's
10/29 Left Lawrence by rail to Iola & then stage 8 miles to Humbolt, after dark in a severe storm of rain with thunder & lightnings-- glean from the Humbolt Union the following
Rev. W. S. Robertson, Presbyterian missionary to Creek Nation is translating (has) the Scriptures into Muscoga Rev. J. R. Ramsay is amongst the Seminoles. Will soon open School- The house to be built of lumber sawed at their own mill- He has 120 Church members- $500 have been subscribed by members & others. The head chief is a warm hearted Christian- Mr. John Beck of Ft Scott is recommended to the Board of Foreign Missions as a suitable person to be nominated to the Government as an Indian Agent for Seminoles-- Mr. Robertson has 34 members in his Church in Creek Nation.
We did not make connection at Humboldt with the train for Chetopa & so had to wait there until second day afternoon
On First day morning, went to the Sabbath School at Methodist Church and took charge of a class which the Minister assigned me- As the services at 11 oclock were to be conducted in German for the benefit of that class of the population we did not remain. The Minister said he would have been very glad for us to have the use of the house for a meeting in the evening, but he had already given it up to a Baptist Minister from Ottawa- He seemed to
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 313
regret it much & said if he had only known that we would be here, it should have been otherwise- We attended the Presbyterian Meeting at 11 oclock-heard an excellent sermon by Dr. Lewis. Sermon on the Holy Spirit and had some conversation with the minister afterwards, in which we endeavored to encourage him as we did the Methodist Minister in the morning. These men (the only ministers in the place) seem to be earnestly working in the midst of an ungodly people, for the promotion of Christianity. Their congregations are very small- In the evening we again went to the Methodist meeting house to hear the Baptist Stranger. When the appointed hour had arrived, he was not present, altho' he was known to be in the city- The Methodist Minister seeing me in the central part of the house, made his way to me & said that the hour had arrived & the Baptist minister was not there & he felt under no obligation to wait for him & he desired me to take charge of the meeting- I told him that I did not feel free to do so until we had waited a while-as the Baptist would probably soon be in. He again expressed his regret that he had not known that we would be there- After a while the Baptist came & preached- So there seemed no open door for us to have a meeting & we left our hotel second day afternoon at 5 o'clock & went across the Neosho River to the Depot, half a mile away. But the train did not come and as we were constantly expecting it, we remained all night in the Station house.
They have but one train a day each way & no telegraph- We of course could not tell why it did not come nor when it would come & we did not want to miss it because our team is probably awaiting us at Chetopa, 60 miles southward- So we arranged some boxes of merchandize which were stored in the room & with carpet sacks for pillows & our blankets for covering we got along pretty well-tho' the boxes felt pretty hard before day- There was no fire in the room-but the weather was not very cold. Neither had we any light but the moon shone, the forepart of the night, so we could see how to arrange our boxes- By morning, we were ready for breakfast as we had no supper & we succeeded in getting something to eat & after a while an engine came down the road & said that the bridge over the Cotton Wood at Emporia was washed badly & that it was very uncertain when a train would be along. So we just have to wait here. Moreover we now learn that had we gone from Lawrence by Emporia we should have been detained there- So that we are really farther on our journey than we
314 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
should have been- I feel thankful that we are well & as comfortable as could be expected.
11 mo 1st
I weigh today 148 lbs. without overcoat, with ordinary fall suit of clothing. We waited all day at the Depot & until 9 o'clock at night & no train arriving we went again to the Humboldt House and we four had to sleep in the garret, in small quarters in which was already one man- A few nights before, at the Eagle Hotel, we four slept in a room just 7 feet by 11 1/2-by actual measurement. A strong prairie wind gave us ventilation to some extent both those nights-
11 mo - 2nd
Again at the Depot after breakfast- The Engine again passed down but no satisfactory intelligence about a passenger train- But after an hour & a half a train came along & we joyfully took seats in the car- Arrived at Chetopa about 1 oclock & found our driver & team & some of the Delaware Indians, al ready to accompany us-
Isaac Johnny Cake a brother of the Delaware Chief was on the train with us, having his wife & daughter They were going out to the Agency also & so we all set out together
Seminole means a Seceder or a wild Indian as they separated from the Muscogee or Creek nation a long time ago & settled in Florida- They pronounce it Se-i-no-lé, putting the emphasis on the last syllable
We left Chetopa at 3 o'clock, and arrived at McGees near Cabin Creek about sunset-10 miles South West from Chetopa- He was away hunting deer & would not be at home but his wife said we could stay.
The house was small with a shed attachment-two rooms in all & no up stairs- E. H., E. E & myself & Isaac Journey Cake & wife & daughter stayed in the house & the two young men Edward F Hoag & Cyrus Frazier, slept in the Ambulance & the two Delaware Indians young men slept in their wagon- There were 14 in all in the little house- We got a good supper & breakfast & were only charged 50 cents apiece The horses also had hay furnished we having grain with us- We found them with plenty of hogs, sheep & goats & cattle- Left at 7.10 and rode 30 miles by 1.30 P. M., in a Southwestent direction---crossing several small creeks & came down between Salt Creek & Lightning Creek & crossed to the east
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 315
bank of the latter about 2 miles above its junction with the Verdigris River. We saw plenty of prairie chickens a few deer-many buffalo birds-a species of black birds which follow the Cattle and buffalo over the prairies to catch flies which trouble the cattle. We passed very many mounds or rounded hills-smooth enough to drive a carriage over though some of them too steep- We stopped on Lightning Creek at Charles Journey Cake's one of the Chiefs- the other two being John Conner & Anderson Sarcoxie. Charles Journey Cake lives in a very comfortable house-has a good farm a fine carriage &c- We were invited to sit down to an excellently prepared dinner of roast beef- baked chicken nicer baked Sweet potatoes, very good light bread- Irish potatoes- Coffee, Rice pudding & dried Apple pie- Charles himself had gone deer hunting-he has several very large Buckskins & some fawn Skins.
The Delawares had some of them been here for several days expecting their payment--we intending to have been here two or three days ago- But many of them are upon the other side of the Verdigris River & they cannot get over as the water is high & will not fall sufficiently until a day or two more has passed- These are good looking Indians dressed like citizens. Many of them speak English - They are industrious and are beginning to get a little stock &c- They have only been down here a short time and had met with heavy losses of stock &c in the war & by thieves before coming down here- They are now incorporated with the Cherokees- A few of them have become dissatisfied, because, as they say, the Cherokees are not kind to them & these dissatisfied Delawares have gone eastward amongst the Peorias about 30 or 40 miles away- There are about 950 individuals- & they receive $30.00 each- The Post office is Coody's Bluff-Cherokee Nation, Ind. Ter. They are the remains of the tribe with whom Wm Penn made his Celebrated treaty under the old Elm tree upon the banks of the Delaware River.
About 5 o'clock P. M. on 5th day the 3rd of 11 mo-Charles Journey Cake and other hunters came in with five or six fine deer. He killed one a few days ago which weighed over 200 lbs after it was dressed- They sell the skins at about $1.37 per lb-after they are dressed- It takes a very large skin to come to $2.00
Charles Journey Cake has a lithograph representation of the belt of Wampum delivered by the Indians to Win Penn at the Great Treaty under the Elm tree at Shackamaxon in 1682 from Historical Society of Penn- "Not sworn to & never broken," furnished by a grandson of James Logan.
316 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
We sat up last night until after 1 o'clock for Superin- Hoag to get his roll corrected by the chief & Council- This morning we had a nice breakfast of venison & commenced payment at about 9 o'clock- Worked very closely & until 9 o'clock P. M.
Commenced again and finished payment.
About 100 of the Delawares are professors of the Christian Religion, mostly Baptists- They meet regularly for worship but have no regular minister- Charles Journey Cake lives so far from the meeting place that he collects the people of his neighborhood & reads the Bible to them in Delaware language & exhorts & teaches them- He gave thanks and prayer at the table before meals in Delaware- I could not under stand any of it except the Name Jesus near the close-It was sweet to hear him pronounce that Name in reverence & with Solemnity- He has 6 daughters--4 married--2 the two unmarried are twins and very much alike-about 16-intelligent-educated-modest-refined girls- Some of his Grandchildren were present- one, Ella May Pratt, sung very sweetly the hymn "Don't think there is nothing for Children to do" &c. It was late at night before we finished the payment. The people had been waiting several days & we worked hard to get thru & let them go home
First day morning
E. Hoag learns that the Osages have not gone on the hunt as he had been told, but are waiting for their payment so he concludes to go home at once and get their money- Edw. Earle, myself & driver with the ambulance remain here today, to spend First day & see if way opens for anything to do or say for the good of the people or the encouragement of their excellent chief- John Conner & Anderson Sarcoxie the other chiefs, are in feeble health. Conner the head chief is here but not able to leave his tent-He talks English -is very intelligent and expressed a hope of a better existence beyond the grave- He belongs to the Baptists. In the tabular statement furnished to Supert. Hoag from the Department, $100 was directed to be paid to Capt Sarcoxie as a continuation of a special annuity to his father according to treaty 1829-Conner & Journeycake say that it was only an annuity of $100 & that he received it at the spring payment & of course it is not due again
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 317
until next spring- They furthermore say that in treaty 1860 the chiefs & council men are entitled to receive pay for their services but that for the last two years their pay has been stopped & they do not know why it is.
I received of Isaac Journey Cake for Thomas Haines, a teacher $25.50 balance of his account- Pd. to Enoch Hoag Also of the same for Linneus Roberts $50.00, balance of his school account-Pd. to Enoch Hoag.
Paid these to Enoch Hoag.
They furthermore say that they have a claim upon the Government for property stolen by white people whilst they lived in Kansas- That the last treaties recognize these losses as just-- & they do not know why they are not paid.
Mr. C. N. Vaun a Cherokee Lawyer proposes to draw the tribal funds of the Delawares for 3 or 4 or 5 per cent-acting in cooperation with E. Hoag If the Chiefs & Councilmen agree to it- The Delawares are rather averse to drawing their funds-though it. might be better for the more industrious part of them to do so- If Congress would permit this they would be glad
Henry Armstrong, son in law of Chas. Journey Cake has a store at Journey Cake's but he lives several miles above near his brother Charles Armstrong another soninlaw of Charles Journey Cake-- John T. Smith has a store near Charles Armstrong's- C. C. Burnett is a trader over the Verdigris on the Caney.
Charles Armstrong is a great hunter. He has sat on his horse & shot a deer in one direction & turned & shot another in a different & killed both The Caney river is the same as the Little Verdigris & runs into the Verdigris Dr. Allen married a daughter of Isaac Journey Cake & practices some amongst the Indians- Dr. Lovell formerly of vicinity of Pilot Mountain in N. C. lived on Grand River & has practiced here sometimes-
"It is very pleasant to me to hear the good book read. It almost seems to me that I can sometimes see the Savior when he Spoke these words-so pleasant, so kind, so lovely- He is full of love- He is a true Savior and there is no other but Him." These words were spoken very deliberately and seriously by Charles Journey cake at a religious opportunity in his family after I had read the 18th Chapter of John He then knelt & offered a prayer in Delaware, which of course I could not understand except the names Jesus &
318 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
Christ- In speaking English he had to be very deliberate but in his native language he was fluent-- Osage Wâh sâh she Ou sa-ge WA-sa she
We left C. Journey cake's & went Southward a few miles below the mouth of Lightning Creek & crossed the Verdigris at a ferry near Ballitt's- The bank on the west side was very bad-.& steep -river 150 ft wide & 15 deep but had been much deeper. It would have been much better to have crossed it higher up about Coody's Bluff-but the water was too high there to ford & there was no ferry at that place- the road would have been much more direct to the Caney river. After crossing the Verdigris and passing the river bottom of Splendid rich land we came to Capt John Conner's, Head Chief of Delaware's- We then went North of West over the prairie and & then turned west towards the mouth of the Caney River-but as the roads were very indistinct we rather got off the exact course- We passed but one house between Capt. Conner's & .John Carter's, a distance of 20 miles- We reached Carter's a little before night & thought we had better stop as they were willing to entertain us-as well as they could- We rested pretty well although the wind blew hard & the house was somewhat open. The beef & coffee were very good-though the surroundings- the table -knives-&c &c were in such a condition asunder some circumstances would have rather destroyed appetite- They only charged 50 cents for each person & nothing for horsefeed- The man had a dozen horses 75 or 80 cattle & was preparing to open a little farm. He lives near the Cana below Curleyhead Creek- Cattle & horses live in the bottom lands of the Cana all winter without being fed upon cane (reeds) wild rye &c Wild Geese are there all winter A flock of 10 or 12 flew up, not more than 200 yds from the house in the morning- There are also many wild ducks & an abundance of fish in the river.
11 mo 8--
After leaving Carter's we crossed one small creek & then Curlyhead Creek the water of which was quite deep- Between this Creek & Shoteau's store we passed some splendid bottom Land but rather wet- Prairie grass 8 ft high in some parts- It is about 10 miles from Carter's to Choteau's Store & that is one mile (200 rods) west of 96° & about 12 miles below the junction of the little or East Cana with the Big or west Cana & 22 miles below Kansas
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 319
Line- The Cana formed by the junction of these streams is also called little Verdigris & runs southward a little west of 96° & at about latitude 36°-30'-it turns Southeast & runs to the Verdigris.
There is a good deal of chill & fever in this section The river & creeks are well supplied with timber. We found entertainment, at Mrs. Gildstraps- Quite a number of Delawares are settled on the Cana & also Shawnees on Bird Creek which runs into the Cana on the Western side about 15 miles below Shoteau's- These people all supposed that they were east of 96°- And the best Government maps represent the Cana river as East of 96, whereas it is entirely west of it until it turns to the South East to reach the Verdigris. We find upon coming here, Mahlon Stubbs & the Kaw delegation who have been examining for a location They like the country of the little & Big Cana but as that has been selected by the Osages it is difficult to arrange it unless the Cherokees will consent for the Osages to have a strip about 8 1/3 miles East of 96° & which belongs appropriately to the Cana River as otherwise it would be devoid of timber. The line would then run upon the divide between the Cana & the Verdigris- near to the Cana because the Creeks of the Cana are smaller & shorter than those of the Verdigris- This strip of 8 1/2 miles is not occupied to much extent and is mostly arable land and could be well supplied with timber from the Cana. It seems appropriately to belong to the Cana
We find Isaac T. Gibson here also, and Joseph Newsom & Thomas H. Stanley- the two latter being with Mahlon Stubbs.
Hard rope & his band of Osages came in today also.
11 mo 9-
We find that most of the Osages have gone on the hunt & that the trader misinformed E. Hoag- I suppose he wanted the money to come so he could get some of it- The weather is fine & we would be glad to be on our journey but we must be patient-- We bought a pair of horses of M. Stubbs, as he was going to send all his party home & he himself going with I. T. Gibson to Tahlequa to the Cherokee Council to try to adjust the land matter-but they will wait for Enoch Hoag- In company with I. T. Gibson & M. Stubbs we hired a Cabin- built a fire, roasted some sweet potatoes & after a light supper, spread down our robes & blankets upon a pile of corn in the husk- Our blankets being narrow for two & the night cool, we were not over comfortable- but got along pretty well- In the morning we had a nice breakfast prepared by
320 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
our driver & I. T. Gibson. Coffee beef steak (cheese-bread & crackers we already had on hand- this was the morning of the 10th of the mo--
After breakfast, we read a portion of Scripture & had a devotional pause- Then sent Cyrus after some sweet potatoes & spoke to a woman to bake us some biscuit for dinner- C. got a bucket full a peck of potatoes for 871/2 & we hired a dutch oven of a neighbor & baked some splendid potatoes- also had beef- &c &c & of course Coffee for dinner I carried the potatoes to the river & washed them ,&then we walked over the adjoining lands, surveying for agency Buildings & after dinner Isaac, Mahlon & myself took a horseback ride over the river to view the premises there.
We crossed just westward from Mrs. Gildstraps & ascended by a. bridle path to the top of the bluff & made our way towards a remarkable mound a mile & a half away- We first descended slightly & then more rapidly into a ravine where we lost sight of the mound- Then in ascending we had a beautiful view of its constantly & regularly increasing proportions- We came to a plateau or broad terrace perhaps 300 ft below the top of the mound which was very regularly conical for the last 80 ft-the upper portion resting upon a broader base of much the same character- At the foot of the basilar portion we crossed a little stream & prepared to ascend- Reaching the top of the basilar portion we tied our horses to some little shrubs & walked or clambered up at an angle of 45° to the summit which was about 40 ft in diameter There was not a tree nor even a [illegible] bush from the top to the ravine below- Prairie grass grew to the top- Small fragments of rock were intermingled with the soil & upon these were impression of seashells. We also found petrified sticks-coral &c upon the summit- We had a fine view of the surrounding country- the Cana immediately East & stretching first south & then in the distance winding by south- the Curley head Creek making into it from the Eastern side.
Various mounds in different directions &c- Descending we went upon the south side of a mound nearly west & found an abundant supply of excellent building sandstone-some of it apparently already dressed-having two, three & sometimes 4 faces of a cube nicely squared- Upon the face of very many of these rocks were impressions of sea shells of varying character & also of leaves & stems of vegetables- On one rock the face of which measured two square feet were over 120 distinct impressions of Shells.
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES. 321
After a good supper we talked over the dangers of this country for men who travel with money. We felt some solicitude for our Superintend-whom we were expecting &c and so after a time we read some in the Bible- The voice of prayer was heard amongst us & we spent an hour or two in exchanging our feelings of interest in one another's welfare & were able, I trust, to cast our cares, our fears, & our burdens upon the Lord and in peace & composure to commit ourselves unto his will- We had removed the corn to one side of the cabin & husked a part of it & made a bed of the husks upon which we spread our robes & blankets & had a good rest.
10 mo 11th [undoubtedly "11 mo. 10th or 11th" is meant here] 1870.
In the morning after a good breakfast I took another bucket of sweet potatoes to the river & washed them & then proposed to E. Earle & Cyrus Frazier to make it wash day-so changing our apparel we went to the river where it rushes over the rocks & had quite a time in washing clothes- We then tied up a rope for a clothes line & hung them up to dry near our cabin- Saw a flock of Paroquettes-red bills, yellow heads & green bodies Said to be capable of speaking like Parrots
This mound is a little S. of West from Shoteau's agency-or Mrs Gildstraps-& about a mile & 1/2 half west of the Cana river at its great westward curve- Another mound is connected by its base with the base of this- It is North West from this & a little taller- Upon the South face of this and all over the summit is the fine sandstone with petrified shells &c [The author here inserted in his diary a rough sketch of a mound which accompanied this paragraph.]
Two of the Cana River mounds as viewed from the North-East. These mounds are about 1/2 miles from the River & about 2 miles a little South of West from Choteau's Store, or Caneyville or Gillstraps crossing- [Here a sketch of two mounds appeared.]
Afternoon of 11th of 11 mo. We rode again on horseback west of the Cana-first Northward, then Westward to the mounds again Returned at night fall Superintendent not yet arrived.
Ennisville is about one mile east of 96° & near the Kansas line Parker is about 30 miles east of Ennisville [A roughly sketched map of the Little Verdigris river area a little south of the Kansas line accompanied this paragraph. It locates Choteau's store and names the creeks in its vicinity.]
322 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
11 mo 12th
E. E. M. S. I. T. G & myself rode Northward so far as Cotton Creek three miles south of Kansas line.
Coon creek is about 6 miles north of Shoteau's- Post Oak Creek about 6 miles above Coon creek- Junction Creek a small stream runs in at the junction of the Big & Little Cana about three miles above Post Oak Cr. & then Cotton creek is about three miles above Post Oak Cr. & then Cotton creek is about three miles beyond Junction Creek Just before reaching Cotton Cr we pass between two remarkable mounds- We saw a flock of wild turkeys & one of wild Geese on banks of Cotton Creek-& in returning saw a wolf which seemed very much frightened & ran away as rapidly as possible. We also saw a flock of 18 Sand hill Cranes much taller than geese They were about 100 yds from us, standing on the open prairie & did not seem at all alarmed by our passing so near to them- We found coal at Post Oak Creek- Upon return at night to our Cabin, we found Supt Hoag had come-with John Rankin, Post Master. at Lawrence & trader at the Sac & Fox Agency and also Robt Dunlap, trader with Osages- They will go with us to the Sac & Fox Agency.
11 mo 13th
About eleven A. M we set out for the Arkansaw River 8 in Company- Crossed the Cana at a ford about 2 miles below Shoteau's Store-passed between two mounds & finally into a sort of cañon & saw immense blocks of lime stone on the hill sides- Came about 3 o'clock to Judge Roger's 18 miles from Shoteau's in a South Western course- Judge Rogers has gone to Tahlequah to the meeting of the Cherokee Council or Legislature-he being one of its members- His wife gave us permission to stay with them all night & as there was no other stopping place which we could reach, we were glad of the permission- though the quarters were not such as might be expected at a Judge's residence in the Eastern States Edward & I & Enoch & John Rankin slept on beds on the floor very comfortably- It turned suddenly cold in the night We passed no house yesterday, the whole 18 miles
11 mo 14-
Left at 81/2 o'clock In 2 miles came to Polecat Cr & 2 miles further to Bird Cr. A half mile beyond Bird Cr, the best road (though several miles the longest) turns to the right & in 5 miles leads to the Falls of Fall Creek-the direct road leads to a bad crossing some miles below the falls- The water at the Falls is about 100 ft wide & plunges over the solid rock about 8 ft.
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 323
A flock of wild Geese, 11 in number flew up just before us in the morning within easy gunshot- Also ducks- Saw a wolf in the distance
Stopped at noon & cooked our dinner- Then met a drove of Texas cattle numbering 1000-& another drove just behind of 4 or 500- They lost 150 in fording the Arkansaw by their getting into quicksand- We reached the bank of the Arkansaw about half hour before Sunset but had to go higher up to another ferry-& as I. T Gibson & Mahlon Stubbs were going to Tahlequah they parted company with us here & went down the Arkansaw on the North bank- We were so delayed in finding the ferryman that we concluded to camp on the North bank & soon had our fire going & our beef on a stick before it-tea made &c-& at bedtime E. E. & myself took the ambulance & the others lay before the fire- E. E. got cold & left for the fire at 1 o'clock- I rested but did not sleep soundly
Wild Geese & wolves kept a music for us last night- We had an early & good breakfast & expected the Ferryman to come early but it was fully 8 o'clock before he came & then we were delayed in getting the boat ready & starting- The river is about half a mile in width and we had to go down the river about half a mile to avoid a shoal & the current being stronger on the other side it was difficult to get the boat to the landing place- The bank was very steep & we had to fasten the horses to the end of the carriage pole & to take everything out of it & thus were enabled to get it dragged up the bank- It was near ten o'clock before we left the west bank of the river
The weather was fine & we went on over various Creeks-& in the afternoon over one or two considerable mountains and about 8 o clock P. M. came to Post Oak Taylor's a Creek Indian- We had passed no other house since leaving the Arkansaw except a little settlement within a mile of the river- Taylor was not at home & none of his family except one grown daughter who had gone to bed- Supt Hoag & John Rankin were acquainted there & had stayed with them before- She could not talk English- They made her understand that we wanted corn for the horses & to sleep on the floor before the fire ourselves- She gave assent & went back to her bed in the corner of the room- E. E. J. R. & myself went into the woods & cut down a tree & brought up the wood as there was no wood pile & making a good fire we spread down our
324 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
robes & blankets & slept pretty well- In the morning we ate our breakfast, having some cold food-& having made some coffee- E. H paid the woman $3.00 & we left her some good coffee on the table she not having left her couch
[Sac and Fox Reservation]
We reached the Sac & Fox Agency about 1, o'clock P. M & had a good dinner at J. Crowley's the Blacksmith- Agent Miller & Dr. Williams & wife seemed glad to see us &c. In going from Choteo's to the Arkansaw we went nearly south & after crossing the Arkansaw we went South west to the Sac & Fox Agency- From Choteou's to Judge Roger's is 18 miles Judge Rogers to the Arkansaw is 35 miles. From Arkansaw to Post oak Taylor's is nearly 40 miles-from Taylor's to Agency 20 miles- total from Shoteou's 113 miles- We passed the Deep Fork about 1 1/2 from Agency- This runs centrally from east to west through their reservation- Enoch boards with Dr. Williams & wife & Edward & I with Jacob Crowley & wife We had a comfortable bed & good fare.
11 mo 17
Sac & Fox Reservation extends from the North Fork of the Canadian on the south to the Red Fork of the Arkansaw on the North 46 miles and from the Creek line on the east a distance of 16 3/4 miles to the west--embracing 7701/2 Square miles. There are 660 of this tribe. They manifest some disposition to agriculture and have a very favorable location The climate is mild and although chills & Fever prevail to some extent in the Fall, yet it will become healthier as it is brought under cultivation. Corn, sweet potatoes, cotton, Sorghum &c will be staples here also wheat. The affairs of this agency are not in so good a condition as they would have been under other circumstances. Our excellent friend Thomas Miller offered his resignation months ago, believing that the time had come for him to be released- He had very successfully & economically removed these Indians from Kansas last winter & wished some one else to take hold of the work of putting up the Agency buildings &c John Hadley has been recommended & appointed as agent but does not come & we suppose will not be able to do so and this disappointment, of course, adds to the delay in getting things ready
They need a saw mill at once. As the climate is mild, it is practicable to do a great deal of work here in the winter Agent Miller has 5 or 6 men employed in farming operations putting up temporary
NICHOLSON: TOUR OF INDIAN AGENCIES 325
buildings breaking the sod, fencing &c. He has had about 200 acres broken.
The Agency is situated near Deep Fork which has a fine rich bottom in which the wild rye remains green through the winter- The bottom is liable to overflow- It is difficult to cross this stream in high water as they have neither Bridge nor Ferry- The Osage women crossed their little babies & their property last summer by making a sort of basket. of a rawhide by drawing up the edges with a rope so as to bring the hide into a cup shape then taking the rope in the teeth the mother would swim across & carry the whole concern over & depositing the freight, would swim back for another cargo- Deer & wild turkey are abundant. But such articles as have to be brought from the States are high owing to the distance of wagon transportation Pecan nuts here are abundant--worth $2.00 per bushel--They have 80 bushels at the trader's store. About 60 acres of the broken land is around the Agency & 140 or more for various Indians
The general condition of these Indians does not vary much from that of the Pottawatomies- Their women are overworked and become prematurely old- There are evidences of hereditary syphilitic taint & Scrofula amongst these Indians. Very few children are born amongst them & of those few many die- They are constantly diminishing in numbers- One chief & part of his band are still at the old reservation & refuse to come down but they will get no money until they come- One article in their last treaty (Article XV) needs my attention when I return to Washington- Mo-quaw-ho-ko is the chief who will not come- The absentee Shawnees & some Delawares who live west of the Seminole Reservation about 550 in number are now placed under the care of the Sac & Fox Agent- These Indians are located within the area which the Pottawattomies will probably select- Louis Goky is Interpreter for Sac & Foxes- Keokuk is one of the chiefs
Jacob Crowley-Blacksmith $800-Mary Crowley his wife-$300.
Dr. David Williams, Physician & wife-$1500 per year & furnish his own medicines
326 THE KANSAS HISTORICAL QUARTERLY
Thomas Miller Agent- succeeded by John Hadley in 3rd mo-1871
Sac & Fox Agency via Okmulgee, Creek Nation, Ind. Territory
Heavy cost in coming here-
(To be concluded in the November Quarterly)
1. Congressional Globe, 41st Cong., 3d sess., 1870-71, pt. 1, p. 9.
2. From a copy of the minutes of the proceedings furnished the Kansas Historical Society by Mrs. Arthur M. Jordan of Chapel Hill, N. C.
3. Report of the Secretary of the Interior, 42d Cong., 2d sess., 1871-72, v. 1, s. a. 1508, p. 597.
4. Ibid., pp. 588-586.
5. Ibid., p. 599.
6. Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, 1876, p. 68.
7. From a copy of a letter from C. Schurz furnished the Kansas Historical Society by Mrs. Arthur M. Jordan. 8. The minutes of the September and December meetings of the General Council of the Indian territory and a copy of the proposed constitution were republished by the Oklahoma Historical Society in its Chronicles of Oklahoma (1926), v. III, pp. 33-44, 120-140, 218-228.