The Uintah Ouray Reservation 100 years ago

The Annual Reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs are filled with statistics. From these we gain a little perspective on reservation life in the year 1913.

          Ute populations on Colorado reservations:

          504   Wiminuche

          360   Capote and Muache

          Ute populations on Utah reservations:

          478   Uintah

          451   Uncompahgre

          283   White River

       2,076   Utes living on reservations in 1913

Changing Names of Indian Agency

          In 1860 the Conejos Agency was established for the Tabeguache Utes. The name came from the River in Southern Colorado. The little town located along the river was also called Conejos. It was the home of the Indian Agent, Lafayette Head.
          In 1869 the Agency was moved to Los Pinos Creek and renamed Los Pinos Agency.
          The Agency was relocated again in 1875 to the Uncompahgre Valley. However, the name Los Pinos Agency was retained.
          The Tabeguache Utes and their Agency were moved to a new reservation on Utah’s Green River in 1881. It became the Ouray Agency, named for their famous chief who died before the move.
          In 1886 the reservation was consolidated with the adjoining reservation as the Uintah and Ouray Agency

Published in: on March 26, 2013 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , , ,

Interview with Ouray, Part 5

A VISIT TO THE TRIBE OF UTES.
New-York Tribune (New York, N.Y.) October 08, 1874, page 4

RESERVATION LIFE

Tower Mountain, opposite Howardsville, Bakers Park. Upon its nearby perpendicular fact of 3,000 feet are exposed a number of quartz veins, traversing its whole length. The one cutting down diagonally from the left is the Mammoth lode. Most of the others are claimed as mineral-bearing veins. San Juan County, Colorado. 1874.

For the last few years the [Ute] nation had probably been decreased in numbers, especially by the ravages of small-pox, which was purposely communicated to them, it is said, by some traders with whom the Utes were unwilling to trade. Some Indians having taken the disease from the infected clothing sold them, others were advised to be vaccinated, but were instead inoculated with the disease…so the terrible story goes, by unprincipled quacks in the towns south of them. The epidemic raged with fearful power and hundreds of families were exterminated…
          For a number of years they have been supposed to live upon the reservation, which embraces some 14,000,000 acres in South-Western Colorado, and is the largest Indian reservation in the country. But the fact is that they are in its valley only in the Winter, roaming during the Summer all over the Territory, particularly in the dark country and west of Denver, where they hunt buffalo. From about the 1st of August until it is time for them to retire to their Winter quarters in the Uncompahgre Valley, they keep near their respective agencies and live on the rations which are dealt out to them by the Government.

This article was written by an unidentified member of the Hayden Survey team based on his August 27, 1874 interview with Ouray.

Photo by William Henry Jackson, with his notes, courtesy the U.S. Geological Survey Photographic Library.

Published in: on April 9, 2012 at 6:00 am  Leave a Comment  
Tags: , , , , , , ,