Surveying Pueblos 1859

Zuni Pueblo 1879 by John K. Hillers

J.L. Collins, Superintendent of Indian Affairs for New Mexico Territory, wrote to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs in 1859:

          “I advised you some time ago that the surveyor general had commenced the survey of the Pueblo land grants…I was advised yesterday by the surveyor general that the survey of the Pueblos…had been suspended on account of some disagreement about the lines, which will make it necessary for him and myself to visit the Pueblos to settle and arrange the matter in dispute.
          “The Indians of several of the Pueblos have met with heavy losses by the Navajos, of whom they very justly complain. In other respects they are quiet and contented. The internal government of these Pueblos is left entirely to themselves.
          “The officers are elected annually, by a vote of the people. In these elections, party divisions not unfrequently (sic) create much excitement among the Indians, and questions arise that have to be referred to this office for settlement. They are always submissive, and acquiesce without further trouble.”
          Collins proposed establishing schools for the Pueblos. “A moderate education would make the Indians of these Pueblos useful and obedient citizens. They are very good farmers, posses excellent land for cultivation, and now raise a surplus which could be greatly increased under proper instruction.”

Photo courtesy National Archives and Records Administration

Text from Annual Report of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs 1859

Published in: on September 26, 2011 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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