Meriam Report, Part 3

Indian Boarding SchoolThe 1928 Meriam Report of the condition of Indians on reservations drew conclusions about the effectiveness of government policies toward Indians.
          The report noted, “It almost seems as if the government assumed that some magic in individual ownership of property would…prove an educational civilizing factor…unfortunately this policy has for the most part operated in the opposite direction”
          The report stated that many of the Indians lived on lands “from which a trained and experienced white man could scarcely wrest a reasonable living.” The report indicated that some land given to Indians was not suitable for farming. Such land had “little value for agricultural operations other than grazing.”

Source: Meriam Report

Meriam Report, Part 2

Girls Indian Boarding SchoolAbout Indian boarding schools, the Mariam report noted,
“provisions for the care of the Indian children in boarding schools are grossly inadequate.”
          The report went on to state that “boarding schools provided poor diet, were overcrowded, did not provide sufficient medical services, were supported by student labor, and relied on a uniform curriculum rather than raising teacher standards.”
          “The Indian Service should encourage promising Indian youths to continue their education beyond the boarding schools and to fit themselves for professional, scientific, and technical callings,” the report suggested. “Not only should the educational facilities of the boarding schools provide definitely for fitting them for college entrance, but the Service should aid them in meeting the costs.”

Source: Meriam Report

Published in: on October 28, 2013 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Meriam Report, Part 1

New Students Carlisle Indian School (before)

New Students Carlisle Indian School (before)


In 1926 the U.S. Secretary of Interior authorized an independent study of educational, industrial, social, and medical activities of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. The study was also designed to evaluate the overall condition of Indians on reservations.

Same students after being “civilized”


The resulting Meriam Report was published in 1928. It suggested that education should integrate Indian children into the majority culture instead of educating them in separate institutions. Boarding schools for Indian children had been the norm. The report stated, “The most fundamental need in Indian education is a change in point of view.”                                        

  Source: Meriam Report

Published in: on October 21, 2013 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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Indian Schools in Colorado

The Annual Report of the U.S. Department of Interior for the fiscal year 1904/1905 lists three government supported Indian Schools in Colorado. All three were boarding schools. The Grand Junction and Fort Lewis schools were in session 12 months of the year; the Southern Ute school operated 8 months of the year.
          In this mid 1890s photo from the collection of Fort Lewis College Center for Southwest Studies, girls at the Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School pose with a matron.

                                      Enrollment      Cost to Gov’t
Grand Junction            216                $33,119.02
Fort Lewis                      198                $31,714.10
Southern Ute                  62                 $ 8,977.09

          The Grand Junction Indian School operated from 1886-1911 and the Fort Lewis Indian School from 1892-1910 according to the Colorado State Archives. The 1900 census reported the majority of students at the Grand Junction school came from Arizona and New Mexico with a few from Utah, Nevada, and Nebraska. The Fort Lewis school hosted students from 21 states and 3 foreign countries (England, Ireland and Wales) in 1900.
          A school was established on the Southern Ute Reservation in 1886 but suffered from low attendance. In 1920 the school closed and Southern Ute children enrolled in public schools, according to the Ute Indians of Colorado in the Twentieth Century by Richard Keith Young.

Published in: on February 7, 2011 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
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