58. Treaty of Fort Laramie. September 17, 1851
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84 58. Treaty of Fort Laramie September 17, 1851 As emigrants crossed the plains in large numbers, diplomatic as well as military measures were undertaken to preserve peace with the Indians. A treaty established formal relations with the northern plains tribes at Fort Laramie in 1851 and sought to gain security for the overland travelers. The treaty set boundaries for the various tribes, authorized the United States to build roads and military posts, and provided restitution for damages to white travelers. A similar treaty was signed with the southern plains tribes at Fort Atkinson in July 1853. Articles of a treaty made and concluded at Fort Laramie, in the Indian Territory, between D. D. Mitchell, superintendent of Indian affairs, and Thomas Fitzpatrick, Indian agent, commissioners specially appointed and authorized by the President of the United States, of the first part, and the chiefs, headmen, and braves of the following Indian nations, residing south of the Missouri River, east of the Rocky Mountains, and north of the lines of Texas and New Mexico, viz, the Sioux or Dahcotahs, Cheyennes, Arrapahoes, Crows, Assinaboines, Gros-Ventre Mandans, and Arrickaras, parties of the second part, on the seventeenth day of September, A.D. one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one. Article 1. The aforesaid nations, parties to this treaty, having assembled for the purpose of establishing and confirming peaceful relations amongst themselves, do hereby convenant and agree to abstain in future from all hostilities whatever against each other, to maintain good faith and friendship in all their mutual intercourse, and to make an effective and lasting peace. Article 2. The aforesaid nations do hereby recognize the right of the United States Government to establish roads, military and other posts, within their respective territories . Article 3. In consideration of the rights and privileges acknowledged in the preceding article, the United States bind themselves to protect the aforesaid Indian nations against the commission of all depredations by the people of the said United States, after the ratification of this treaty. Article 4. The aforesaid Indian nations do hereby agree and bind themselves to make restitution or satisfaction for any wrongs committed,aftertheratificationofthistreaty, by any band or individual of their people, on the people of the United States, whilst lawfully residing in or passing through their respective territories. Article 5. The aforesaid Indian nations do hereby recognize and acknowledge the following tracts of country, included within the metes and boundaries hereinafter designated , as their respective territories [descriptions of the boundaries]. . . . It is, however, understood that, in making this recognition and acknowledgement, the aforesaid Indian nations do not hereby abandon or prejudice any rights or claims they may have to other lands; and further, that they do not surrender the privilege of hunting, fishing, or passing over any of the tracts of country heretofore described. Article 6. The parties to the second part of this treaty having selected principals or head-chiefs for their respective nations, through whom all national business will hereafter be conducted, do hereby bind themselves to sustain said chiefs and their successors during good behavior. Article 7. In consideration of the treaty stipulations, and for the damages which have or may occur by reason thereof to the Indian nations, parties hereto, and for their maintenance and the improvement of their moral and social customs, the United States bind themselves to deliver to the said Indian nations the sum of fifty thousand dollars per annum for the term of ten years, with the right to continue the same at the discretion of the President of the United States for a period not exceeding five years thereafter, in provisions, merchandise, domestic animals, and agricultural implements, in such proportions as may be deemed best adapted to their condition by the President of the United States, to be distributed in proportion to the population of the aforesaid Indian nations. 85 Article 8. It is understood and agreed that should any of the Indian nations, parties to this treaty, violate any of the provisions thereof, the United States may withhold the whole or a portion of the annuities mentioned in the preceding article from the nation so offending, until, in the opinion of the President of the United States, proper satisfaction shall have been made. . . . [Charles J. Kappler, ed., Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties, 2:594–95.] 59. Indian Commissioner Lea on the Civilization of the Indians Extract from the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs November 27, 1851 The United States government’s...