Indian Affairs in U.S. Government History

In 1775, the Continental Congress created a Committee on Indian Affairs. In 1789, Indian Affairs became part of the newly established War Department. 
Thomas McKenney  (pictured at left) became the first Chief Clerk for Indian Affairs, appointed in 1824 by Secretary of War John C. Calhoun. McKenney had been in charge of the  Indian Trade from 1816. When Congress approved a position of Commissioner of Indian Affairs in 1832, Calhoun, by then Vice President of the United States, secured McKenney’s appointment to that position at an annual salary of $3,000.
          Responsibility for United States relations with Indians was transferred to the Department of Interior in 1849. For almost one hundred years this function was variously known as the Indian Office, Indian Department, Indian Bureau, and Indian Service. It officially became the Bureau of Indian Affairs on September 17, 1947.

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Published in: on February 21, 2011 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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