Minutes of councils held by James McLaughlin, United States Indian Inspector, with the Indians of Red Lake Agency, Minnesota, from March 4th to March 10th, 1902, for Cession of land.
1902 cession of eleven western townships, Red Lake Indian Reservation, "council" proceedings, page 50

 

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yesterday, when I made you the offer of $3.75 per acre.   It is $1.25 per acre more than I ever offered for Indian Reservation land, or ever had to pay for such a cession.   When I made you the offer I did it with full knowledge of what I was doing.   I drove over your land, through about the center of it, and over the best portion of it, along Red Lake River from Thief River Falls to this point. It would be a great pleasure for me to give you a higher price for your land if I thought it was worth more, and thought that Congress would ratify it.   I know there are men in Congress who will oppose it very much at the price I offer, but I believe a sufficient number will understand its value and accept my report upon it.     The Department Officials knowing me to be conservative have confidence in me, expecting me to deal fairly, both with the Indians and with the Government, and therefore don't hamper me much with instructions, leaving matters largely to my judgment, and the only fault found with me is that they think I sometimes allow too high a price for land. I can allow a higher price for your lands than a person who was not so familiar with the work, for the reason that from my many years continuous service with the Indians my reports when they go before Congress receive due consideration.   I believe in offering Indians a good price for their lands in the beginning, rather than start at lower figures and finally allow what should have been offered in the beginning.   That is why I allowed you so high a price.   I also offered to increase the acreage that you might take as allotments, doubling the quantity that you are entitled to under present laws.  My friends, I am not insisting on your taking allotments at this time, but I want you to understand the advantages of having the privilege of taking double the amount of land that you are now entitled to when you do take allotments, and have a provision to that effect in any agreement that we may make.    This is a matter for you to determine



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