||"Chippewa Indians in
51st Congress, 1st Session - House of Representatives - Ex. Doc. No. 247.
[se-]cure justice in this case, and upon these assurances the acceptance and signing of the propositions made were nearly unanimous. This matter is incorporated in the draught of a bill herewith presented for submission to Congress.
The White Earth Reservation contains 796,762 acres, and the number of Indians occupying the same is 2,044. They complaint of want of milling facilities. The have about 5,000 acres seeded in what, barley, and vegetables, but owing to want of rain not more than half a crop will be grown. At least 2,500 acres heretofore cultivated lies fallow for want of seed and teams.
There were but 277 Chippewas at Gull Lake, all of whom signed the agreement and agreed to make their permanent home o the White Earth Reservation as soon as they should be furnished with means to cultivate the soil and subsist until they could make a living.
At Leech Lake Reservation, amidst pompous demonstrations, the Commission was received, and the first demand made of them was that there should be settlement of outstanding claims. Nor was the business allowed to proceed until the Commission had given a solemn promise with raised hands that they would to their utmost ability urge the immediate settlement of these unadjusted demands. These Pillager Indians have a claim for lands ceded to the United States under the treaty of 1847, which it is urged should be carefully investigated, and the Pillagers allowed what may be found in equity due them, and also for damages arising from the construction of reservoirs at the headwaters of the Mississippi. For these damages it is recommended that there be paid $150,000, with 5 per cent. per annum to date, and $1.25 per acre for the overflowed lands. The Indians have absolutely ceded to the United States 46,920 acres, which can not be sold, as provided in the act of January 14, 1889, for their benefit, and it is and must be reserved for the overflow caused by the reservoir dams. An item covering the claim for damages by reason of the construction of the dams is also incorporated in the inclosed draught of bill.
The alleged claim of the Pillagers for further compensation for land ceded under the treaty of 1847 is a matter for consideration by Congress, and I would recommend that it be brought to the attention of that body. The statement upon which this claim is based by the Indian sis set forth in the report of the Commission.
At Cass Lake a like demand was made by the Indians for the settlement of unsatisfied demands, but all gave their assent and signatures to the proposition.
The Indian sat Lake Winnibagoshish depend much upon their wild rice which they were gathering at the advent of the Commission. The injury done them by the building of the reservoirs is very great. They are destitute, as are those at Cass Lake, of aid from the Government, having no missionary, school, farmer, blacksmith, or physician. The Commissioners observe that the Winnibagoshish Reservation is marked upon the map by township lines, which is erroneous, as the treaty fixes its line by natural boundaries beyond those shown by township lines. This has given much dissatisfaction, as the whites have settled between the two lines and consequently upon the reservation, as the Indians claim. This marking is erroneous, and should be adjusted. All of the adults of this band gave their consent to the agreement.
The conditions of the Indians at White Oak Point is described as beyond hope of improvement, they being dissipated and dissolute but they have still intelligence enough to ask that whiskey be kept