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Agreement of 1891

(a) The report of this Commission and the agreement effected by it are as follows:

Livingston, Mont., September 14, 1892.

Hon. T. J. MORGAN,
Commissioner of Indian Affairs.


The Commission appointed to negotiate with the Crow Indians of Montana for a modification of the agreement concluded with said Indians December 8, 1890, and ratified by Congress March 3, 1891, have the honor to submit the following report:

We met at the Crow Agency August 24, 1892. After several preliminary talks with the Indians, the agreement herewith transmitted was entered into with them August 27. Nearly every male adult Indian of the Crow tribe took part in the council. According to the last census there are 666 adult male Crows. The inclosed agreement is signed by 436 Indians. The council ratified the treaty unanimously, and the signature of every adult male Crow could doubtless have been secured by following the Indians to their homes, to which they scattered as soon as the council broke up. The Indians were allowed to choose their own interpreters, and the treaty was carefully explained to them, and seemed to be thoroughly understood. The three days subsequent to the conclusion of the treaty were spent by the Commission in making out and delivering to each Indian named in schedule B, a certificate declaring him entitled to the tract of land, or to a selection within the limits of the tract of land, with which his name is connected in said schedule B. Before the unsurveyed selections in schedule B can be surveyed the public land surveys must be extended over a wide tract of country, involving much time and expense. With the limited means at the command of the Commission, this was impracticable. The Commission is of the opinion that the rights of the claimants named in Schedule B are fully protected by the provisions of the first and second sections of the agreement herewith transmitted. The tracts of land described in Schedule B are so bounded by natural boundaries, or township or sectional lines, as to be readily identified on the ground. There can be ne excuse for trespassing upon them should any one be so disposed.

Schedules A and B were compiled from the Crow Land Book; from List A of claims, surveyed by Samuel Bundock, in January, 1891; from List B of allotments made in August, 1890, by J. G. Hatchitt, special allotting agent, and from List C of "Indians who made selections on the ceded part of the Crow Reservation in August, 1890," under the supervision of J. G. Hatchitt.

The following persons assisted in the preparation of said schedules: M. P. Wyman, Crow agent; C. C. Kreidler, additional farmer, district No. 5, which district includes the ceded part of the reserve; Bernard Bravo, the interpreter who accompanied Mr. Hatchitt when the allotments and selections were made, and who is thoroughly familiar with the owner and location of each allotment or selection; and George R. Davis, who has lived among the Indians on the ceded part for many years. When there was the slightest doubt as to the proper location of any Indian claimant, the Indian himself was called before the Commission and questioned through the interpreters.

Schedules A and B were carefully interpreted to the Indians in council, and they were invited to make such alterations or additions as they deem right.

At the request of the Indians the Commission, after due investigation, added the following names to Schedule B: Sees the Lion, Snake Bull, He is a People, Medicine Brings Things, Brings Things Always, Grabs the Knife, Big Eyes, Strikes Her Painted Face, Falls Towards Her, Hunts to Die, Her House is Pretty, The Bird Everywhere, Takes the Rider of a Yellow Horse, The Swallow Bird.

The following-named Indians, included in List C, referred to above, were omitted from Schedule B for the reason that they are dead. The first seven are reported dead

by Special Agent Leonard: Gives Things Everywhere (No. 17), Went by the Side of the Enemy (No. 26), Goes to the Camp (No. 30), Kills One Man (No. 42), Little Eyes (No. 86), Walks to the Water (No. 88), Little Old Man (No. 91), Charley Bravo (No. 119), Charley Fisher (No. 120).

Antelope, No. 101, List C, is omitted from Schedule B, as her name appears on schedule A, No. 98.

No such person as Mrs. Peter Hibbart, No. 122, List C, could be found. If there be any such Indian her rights, if any, are, it seems to us, fully protected by section -, severalty act of 1887.

The names of Lucy Morrison, Mary Morrison, Hannah Morrison, and Al. Morrison, jr., Nos. 1 to 4, List C, are omitted from Schedule B for the reason that the survey of the boundary of the reduced reserve disclosed the fact that their claims were on the retained part of the reserve, and not on the ceded portion.

The name of A. M. Quivey was added to Schedule A at the request of the Indians.

Schedules A and B were adjusted to the entire satisfaction of the Crow tribe, and the individual Indians interested therein. They were especially pleased with the issuance of certificates to the Indians named in Schedule B.

By reference to the certificate attached to Schedule B it will be seen that that list meets with the approval of the persons most familiar with the location of the unsurveyed claims on the reserve.

It is the opinion of the Commission that the inclosed treaty equitably adjusts the long-standing dispute as to the number and location of the Indian claims on the ceded part of the reserve, and leaves no room for further controversy in the matter.

The Indians are anxious to have their retained reserve irrigated to the best advantage, and were perfectly willing to transfer the necessary funds from the annuity to the irrigation fund.

They readily comprehended the advantages to be derived from clause 4 of the treaty with regard to interest.

The Indians insisted that all work, whether done by contract or otherwise, should be confined to themselves and the few whites intermarried with them. They seemed to fear that a general contract would be let to some large contractor who would employ mostly white labor.

They also wished the privilege of employing white men to act as foremen.

With the assistance of the educated Indians and mixed-bloods, and the few whites intermarried with them, the Commmission believes that the Crows can do all the work required in constructing the proposed ditches.

The Commission presumes the cost of the work could be somewhat lessened by the employment of white labor, under the contract system. It is to be remembered, however, that the money spent belongs to the Indians themselves. Moreover, they are benefited, not only by the money earned, but by the habits of industry acquired. The Commission, therefore, believes that the material advancement of the entire tribe, caused by the employment of Indian labor in the construction of these ditches, will more than compensate for any extra cost.

The mixed-bloods on the ceded part of the reserve expect to remain there permanently, and to become citizens of the United States. They therefore requested that they be permitted to receive the cash value of the various annuity goods to which they may be entitled.

The plats of the survey made in 1891 by Samuel Bundock, for Thomas Kent et al., were of great assistance to the Commission. We recommend that the Government approve the same, and that thereupon Mr. Kent be paid the actual and reasonable cost thereof.

It was found that the selections of nine Indians, alleged to have been made during the sixty days subsequent to March 3, 1891, conflicted with the claims of certain white settlers alleged to be protected by the provisions of section 34 of the act ratifying the treaty of December 8, 1890. These Indians agreed to relinquish their claim

to these disputed selections, and take others on the ceded strip in lieu thereof, provided they were paid $50 each as damages for hay and improvements alleged to be owned by them on the disputed claims. The other Indians and the Commission assented to this. The new selections are very much better than the original ones, and the Indians interested are pleased at the exchange.

The Commission trusts the Indian Office will approve of this arrangement, as it removes the last vestige of conflict between whites and Indians as to disputed claims on the ceded strip.

The Indians claim that the former Commission promised that a fence should be built on the west line of the retained reserve to keep out unauthorized stock, and insisted that a provision to that effect be placed in the present treaty.

The members of the Commission were agreeably surprised at the success attained by a number of the Crows in the cultivation of irrigated land. A number of educated Indians and mixed-bloods were noticed fully capable of filling subordinate positions at the agency.

The Commission would respectfully recommend to the Indian Office that these persons be given employment, not so much for the personal benefit of the individuals employed as an inducement for the rising generation of Indians to qualify themselves for like employment.

The Indians complain that the stipulations of the treaty of December 8, 1890, have not been complied with. They especially request that a subagency be built at Pryor Creek and blacksmith and teacher be placed in the shop and schoolhouse already built there. They are also dissatisfied that the ditches are not being built more rapidly. Many Indians and mixed-bloods who desire to take their teams to work on the ditches are unable to do so because the superintendent can not give them employment.

The Commission most respectfully recommends that the stipulations of the treaty of December 8, 1890, be complied with as rapidly as possible, and that the superintendent in charge of irrigation on the Crow reserve be instructed to push the work of building ditches. If the Department can not conveniently furnish him with sufficient skilled employes or plow teams to block out more work, the Commission would recommend that small contracts be let to educated Indians and mixed-bloods, or whites intermarried with them. The Indian contractors could then obtain the necessary help, and teams, and implements themselves

The Commission is under many obligations to the Crow agent, Maj. M. P. Wyman, and his corps of assistants, as well as to the interpreters employed.

Respectfully submitted.

Elbert D. Weed.
Fellows D. Pease.
Fred. H. Foster.


Crow Agency, Mont., August 27, 1892.

We, the undersigned, adult male Indians of the Crow tribe, now residing on the Crow Indian Reservation in the State of Montana, do, on this 27th day of August, A. D. 1892, hereby consent and agree that the agreement entered into by and

between J. Clifford Richardson, C. M. Dole, and R. J. Flint, commissioners on the part of the United States, and said Indians, on the 8th day of December, A. D. 1890, which agreement was ratified and confirmed by the act of Congress approved March 3, 1891, shall be amended and modified as follows:

First. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that the persons named in the accompanying schedule, marked "A," hereto attached and made a part of this agreement, include all the members of said tribe who are entitled to the benefits of the eleventh section of said agreement of December 8, 1890, and that each of said persons is entitled to the land therein described as his selection, in full satisfaction of his claim under said section, and that the persons named in the accompanying schedule, marked "B," hereto attached and made a part of this agreement, include all the members of said tribe who are entitled to the benefits of the twelfth section of said agreement of December 8, 1890 (and of the proviso of the thirty-fourth section of the act of Congress approved March 3, 1891, extending the privilege of making selections on the ceded lands for a period of sixty days), and that each of said persons therein named is entitled to retain the tract of land heretofore selected by him within the limits of the tract of land therein described as containing his selection of his claim under the said section (or the said proviso); Provided, however, that any of such Indians named as above in said schedules "A" or "B" shall have the right, at any time within three years from the 1st day of July, A. D. 1892, to surrender his or her allotment or selection, or the right to make such allotment or selection, and select a new allotment within the limits of the retained reservation upon the same terms and conditions as were prescribed in selecting the first allotment.

It is further provided, That every Indian who shall surrender an allotment or selection within the time specified, having improvements upon it, shall have like improvements made for him upon the new allotment within said retained reservation.

Second. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that all the lands ceded by said agreement may be opened to settlement upon the approval of this agreement by proclamation of the President: Provided, That all lands within the ceded tract selected or set apart for the use of individual Indians, and described in the aforesaid schedules "A" and "B," shall be exempt from cession and shall remain a part of the Crow Indian Reservation, and shall continue under the exclusive control of the Interior Department until they shall have been surveyed and certificates or patents issued therefor, as provided in the agreement of December 8, 1890, or until relinquished or surrendered by the Indian or Indians claiming the same: Provided further, That such lands shall be described as set forth in said schedules "A" and "B," and shall be exempted from settlement in the proclamation of the President opening the ceded lands, and that where lands so set apart are not described by legal subdivisions then the township or section, or tract of land within whose limits such Indian selections are located, shall not be opened to settlement until the Indian allotments therein contained shall have been surveyed and proper evidence of title issued therefor: Provided, however, That whenever all of the Indians entitled to selections within the limits of a particular township or section or tract of land, described in said schedule "B," shall have relinquished the right to take selections therein, as above provided, then that particular township or section or tract of land shall be thrown open to settlement: Provided further, That whenever any of the Indians named in schedule "A" shall have relinquished the allotment therein described as belonging to him, the said allotment so relinquished shall be subject to settlement in the same manner as other lands upon the ceded part not exempted from this cession.

Third. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that the sum of $200,000 may be taken from the funds of $552,000 set aside as an annuity fund by the eighth section of the agreement of December 8, 1890, and added to the fund of $200,000 set apart by the first section of said agreement, to be expended under the direction of the Secretary of the Interior in the building of dams, canals, ditches, and laterals for purposes of irrigation in the valleys of Big Horn and Little Horn Rivers, and on Pryor Creek, and such other streams as the Secretary of the Interior may deem proper, and that not exceeding $100,000 may be expended annually for such purpose: Provided, That in case that less than $100,000 has been, or may be, expended for such purpose in any one year, the difference may, in the discretion of the Secretary of the Interior, be expended in any year or years thereafter in addition to the said sum of $100,000: Provided further, That in the construction of such dams, canals, ditches, and laterals, no contract shall be awarded, or employment given, to other than Crow Indians or whites intermarried with them, except that any Indian employed in such construction may hire white men to work for him if he so desires: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be construed to prevent the employment of such civil engineers or other skilled employes as may be necessary.

Fourth. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that the balance of the annuity fund provided for in section 8 of the agreement of December 8, 1890, remaining unexpended at the date of the approval of this agreement shall be placed in the Treasury of the United States to the credit of the Crow Indians, and bear interest at the rate of 5 per cent per annum, which interest, together with a sufficient portion of the principal to give each Indian an annual annuity of $12, shall be paid to said Indians per capita in cash seminnually.

Fifth. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that all persons of mixed blood named in the said schedules "A" and "B" shall, if they so desire, have the privilege of receiving, instead of the annuities to which they may be entitled as members of the Crow tribe, the cash value thereof directly from the Secretary of the Interior.

Sixth. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that the Secretary of the Interior may, in his discretion, out of any moneys appropriated or set apart for the purpose of surveying allotments upon the Crow Indian Reservation, or the part thereof ceded by the treaty of December 8, 1890, pay to one Thomas H. Kent, of the State of Montana, the sum of money, not exceeding the sum of $2,007.20, actually expended by the said Kent, in causing to be made the survey known as the Bundock survey, made at the solicitation of the said Kent and others by one Samuel Bundock during the month of January, 1891, within the limits of townships 1 north and 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, and 6 south, of ranges 13 to 21 east, inclusive, in the State of Montana, a map or plat of which survey has been filed in the office of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, and marked as follows: "11622. Indian Office. Inclos. No. 1892."

Seventh. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that in consideration of the relinquishment by the following-named Indians of their claim to selections on Stillwater and Fish Tail creeks, each of said Indians shall be paid the sum of $50 out of the fund provided for in the eleventh section of the agreement of December 8, 1890: The Woman, Bird comes from Afar, The Sheep’s Child, Pretty Woman, Mother’s Baby, Black Bull, Falls Towards Her, Strikes Her Painted Face, and Charley Bravo.

Eighth. It is hereby stipulated and agreed that the Secretary of the Interior may, in his discretion, furnish to the Crow Indians the necessary wire and staples with which to fence the western boundary line of the Crow Indian Reservation, and deduct the cost of the same from any moneys received by said Indians from grazing leases on said reservation.

Ninth. The existing provisions of all former treaties and agreements, not inconsistent with this agreement, are hereby continued in force.

Tenth. This agreement shall take effect upon its approval by the Secretary of the Interior.

[Schedules "A" and "B" referred to in the agreement and made a part thereof, filed in the Indian Office-file mark, "315068-1892."]