62. Indian Commissioner Manypenny on Indian Affairs: Extract from the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, November 22, 1856
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89 which may run through their land west of the Big Blue River, shall have a right of way through the reservation, a just compensation being made therefor in money. . . . [Charles J. Kappler, ed., Indian Affairs: Laws and Treaties, 2:608–10.] 62. Indian Commissioner Manypenny on Indian Affairs Extract from the Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs November 22, 1856 George W. Manypenny, commissioner of Indians affairs from 1853 to 1857, faced the problems that arose from the opening of Kansas and Nebraska to white settlement. In his report of 1856 he discussed the treaties made with the Indians and his general views on Indian policy. . . . . Since the 4th of March, 1853, fiftytwo treaties with various Indian tribes have been entered into. These treaties may, with but few exceptions of a specific character, be separated into three classes: first, treaties of peace and friendship; second, treaties of acquisition, with a view of colonizing the Indians on reservations; and third, treaties of acquisition, and providing for the permanent settlement of the individuals of the tribes, at once or in the future, on separate tracts of lands or homesteads, and for the gradual abolition of the tribal character. The quantity of land acquired by these treaties, either by the extinguishment of the original Indian title, or by the re-acquisition of lands granted to Indian tribes by former treaties, is about one hundred and seventy-four millions of acres. Thirty-two of these treaties have been rati fied, and twenty are now before the Senate for its consideration and action. In no former equal period of our history have so many treaties been made, or such vast accessions of land been obtained. Within the same period the jurisdiction of this office and the operations of its agents have been extended over an additional area of from four to six thousandsquaremilesofterritory,embracing tribes about which, before that time, but little was known; and by authority of several acts of Congress thirteen new agencies and nine sub-agencies have been established. The increased labor which has been thus devolved on the Commissioner of Indian Affairs and the entire force of the bureau, as well as upon the superintendents and agents, has been very great, and has swelled the business connected with our Indian affairs to an extent almost incredible. The labor of this branch of the service has doubled since 1852, and yet with this extraordinary increase, the permanent clerical force of its office is the same now that it was on the 4th of March, 1853. The permanent force is now insufficient to promptly perform the labor of the bureau; and the classi fication and arrangement of the business of the office should be modified and improved, but this cannot be done thoroughly without a small permanent increase in the clerical force. The existing laws of the protection of the persons and property of the Indian wards of the government are sadly defective. New and more stringent statutes are required. The relation which the federal government sustains towards the Indians, and the duties and obligations flowing from it, cannot be faithfully met and discharged without ample legal provisions , and the necessary power and means to enforce them. The rage for speculation and the wonderful desire to obtain choice lands, which seems to possess so many of those who go into our new territories, causes them to lose sight of and entirely overlook the rights of the aboriginal inhabitants. The most dishonorable expedients have, in many cases, been made use of to dispossess the Indian; demoralizing means employed to obtain his property; and, for the want of adequate laws, the department is now often perplexed and embarrassed, because of inability to afford prompt relief and apply the remedy in cases obviously requiring them. The general disorder so long prevailing in Kansas Territory, and the consequent unsettled state of civil affairs there have been very injurious to the interests of many of the Indian tribes in that Territory. The state of 90 affairs referred to, with the influx of lawless men and speculators incident and introductory thereto, has impeded the surveys and the selections for the homes of the Indians, and otherwise prevented the full establishment and proper efficiency of all the means for civilization and improvement within the scope of the several treaties with them. The schools have not been as fully attended, nor the school buildings, agency houses, and other improvements, as...