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There is considerable talk about the mixed blood, and so on--
The CHAIRMAN (interposing). Before you leave that, what do you say to this paragraph here in the hearings, or report of that commission? After outlining the territory that you have just suggested, they use this language:
This is larger than they will eventually require, but as there are swamps and other untillable land it can not be fully allotted until survey has been made.
Mr. McDonald. They evidently had in mind that much was absolutely worthless, but that did not change the fact that they determined the quantity that was to be withheld from the Nelson Act. The reason they did it does not make any difference. The amount they did withhold is the property of the Red Lake Indians, because it has never passed from them. It makes no difference what the purpose was. They have violated the provisions of the statute, but that was their selection.
Now, this matter of mixed blood and full blood is important only as the reason why there is no harmony, and let me say to you gentlemen in what I have said and may say I refer to the Indians-I mean those people of full blood, or those people of so nearly full blood and those people of such customs and habits and manner of living that they are really recognized and accepted as Indians; and the mixed bloods are those people who by reason of the quantity of blood---white blood, if you please, or by reason of their surroundings, their modes of life, customs, and so on, are not generally known as Indians. The gentlemen that represent this general council, many of them, are not looked upon by us as Indians. They are scholars; they are business men; they are all skilled in business affairs. If, for instance, you have heard a gentleman spoken of, and his children, and the payments to his children, we would never think that you were speaking of him, if you spoke of an Indian. He is free, and they mingle with those gentlemen the same as if they were white men. They are not distinct from us, so far as that is concerned. And let me call your attention to the fact that prior to the creation of the White Earth Reservation, which is shown in another map here, if the committee please this reservation here, 6 miles square (indicating], created by the act of 1867. Some gentlemen inquired the other day in reference to what had become of the Pembinas. The Pembinas were up here [indicating); the Red Lakes and the Pembinas were occupying a large area, clear up into Dakota; they were given a large reservation, and for the time were disposed of.
They had ceded their big reservation above here [indicating]. Now, prior to the formation of that reservation in 1867 the mixed bloods were never recognized as entitled to any portion of any reservation. Now, bear this in mind, gentlemen; after the White Earth Reservation was created the mixed bloods, no matter where they were, were not recognized as entitled to any portion of the reservation; they were taken care of in this way: The treaty of 1837, which ceded that portion in western and central Minnesota, gave the mixed bloods a cash payment of $100,000. The treaty of 1855 gave the mixed bloods what is known as scrip, or the right to locate 80 acres of land upon the lands ceded. That is when the Indians ceded that entire territory to the United States, with the exception of these few reservations--the White Earth was not in existence then the mixed bloods were permitted to take-no restrictions
were permitted to take 80 acres of land; that belonged to them. The treaty of 1863, which was this treaty here (indicating], the mixed bloods were permitted to take within that territory 160 acres of land. Now, under the 1837 treaty, which gave the mixed bloods this $100,000—well, I am not sure about that—but under some of these treaties Mr. Fairbanks's ancestor was given scrip for 80 acres that was located on some ceded lands.
The records of the Land Office disclose it. I have it here in my grip. The Beaulieu family, recognized as half-breeds, and outside of the Indian family, were also given their cessions upon the ceded portion of the land. But there is not anywhere in any of these treaties a recognition of the mixed bloods as being entitled to participate in any reservation.
Now, briefly on this matter of the White Earth Reservation, prior to the unfortunate legislation known as the Clapp amendment, the only way in which you could get those lands from those Indians there, Chippewas and mixed bloods, was that some of them should die, and then they had what was known in the law ás a dead allotment. Then when you had a dead allotment you could go into the probate court and have an administrator appointed for the heirs. Then the administrator could sell the land belonging to those representatives. That was done, and the records disclose that a man who used to be a member of this general council, Mr. Gus H. Beaulieu, acted as administrator in a number of those dead allotments.
Finally that matter became a little slow, and so these men, these mixed bloods, principally white bloods, imposed upon Senator Clapp, as I understand the situation, and made him believe that because of some legislation or some department rule they were being denied the right to enjoy their property, substantially the same as the representations that are made here now relating to some mixed bloods. Acting upon these representations, Senator Clapp proposed the Clapp amendment, and in that he was wrong. He was our Senator, a man that we liked very much, but he was in error. Jnstead, Mr. Chairman, of determining whether they should enjoy their rights or not, based upon their competency and fitness to administer their affairs, they based it upon the question of whether they had any white blood in them at all. It was supposed, as I understand it, by Senator Clapp and others that the courts would hold that a mixed blood was a man that was practically a white man, but the courts held differently. No matter how small a degree of Indian blood was found in a person, the court held him to be a mixed blood.
Then this matter of looting these unfortunate people started there in White Earth. I do not care to refer to these matters except to say to you gentlemen that they are matters which took place not only in the Interior Office but in your Department of Justice.
Now, gentlemen, let us turn to this bill but briefly. The Chippewa Indians were confronted with what was known as the first Ellsworth bill. I call your attention to the fact that three Congressmen, formerly Mr. Miller, Mr. Lindbergh, and Mr. Steenerson, represented all of this area, and afterwards it was 'Mr. Carss, Mr. Knutson, and Mr. Steenerson. The Indians were confronted with a bill a year ago, as I recollect it, which was known as the Ellsworth bill. That was followed by H. R. 9924. The first bill was 6461 and it was followed
by 9924, and then by H. R. 12103, then by the committee reprint, now by H. R. 12972 and H. R. 12973.
May I use the committee print?
The CHAIRMAN. I should think that would be the one that you should direct your remarks to.
Mr. McDONALD. I want to finish as quickly as I can, Mr. Chairman.
The CHAIRMAN. We will give you the rest of the time until 1 o'clock.
Mr. McDonald. Thank you. I speak now of some of the changes in this bill, for the reason that it will explain away such questions as have been raised by Mr. Caswell, Mr. Lufkin, and this old gentleman, whose name I can not speak, Mr. Butcher, whom you have not heard, Mr. Broker, and these gentlemen who represent specifically the Red Lake Indians. I refer to these things because it will tell you in some measure how they questioned the good faith of those men who have proposed this legislation in the form in which it has been proposed.
Now, I call your attention to lines 1 to 9, on page 1 of the reprint, “That a commission of three members, one of whom shall be appointed by the President, one by the Secretary of the Interior, and one by the president of the General Council of the Chippewa Indians of Minnesota”—I am reading it as it was drafted first. That brings us squarely to the question of what is the general council of the Chippewa Indians of Minnesota. A voluntary association-somebody has suggested that it has been incorporated, but it had not been up until some time ago—was formed, and Mr. James I. Coffey, associated with some of these gentlemen, conceived the idea of a general council of Chippewa Indians. They met at a gathering called by the chiefs or head men of the different tribes and they adopted, if you please, Mr. Chairman, a constitution and by-laws, and I ask permission to have that constitution and those by-laws submitted to your committee, and if you desire they may be printed. I have them here, but I will not stop to read them.
The CHAIRMAN. You can submit them.
Mr. McDONALD. Yes, sir. Now, it was thought that this General Council of Chippewa Indians would be the means through which the Chippewa Indians could work out a great deal of good to themselves, and when I speak the words “Chippewa Indians” I mean, just as I said before, those people who were recognized as Indians and not those people who were recognized principally as white men.
Well, matters went on. To show you how deeply they were taking an interest in their affairs, one of these councils passed a resolution that no Chippewa lands should be sold without reserving the minerals, the same as our State of Minnesota is reserving its minerals. The man who drafted the original Ellsworth bill, H. R. 6461, or H. R. 19924, for some reason or other, Mr. Chairman, omitted to put in there a provision that all those lands should be sold subject to mineral reservations, and while I am touching on that point let me remind you, Mr. Chairman, that a gentleman who was a member of the general council, Mr. Gus H. Beaulieu, in his testimony either before the Graham committee or somehwere else and it is on record in the Bureau of Indian Affairs-testified that he worked for Mr. Congdon, Mr. C. A. Congdon, of Duluth, in purchasing those Indian lands upon the White Earth Rrservation. You can easily
learn from Congressman Carss that Mr. Congdon was at that time a very wealthy mining man of Duluth. It is also a matter of record, which the record should disclose, that Mr. G. Hartley, of Duluth, another mining man, bought lands in there. Now, time ran on, and because of this proposition, which any politician understands, that a majority of a majority can rule an entire body, although they represent only a minority, that was the situation, and as soon as they found it out the control of the General oil of Chippewa Indians of Minnesota passed into-the-present ands. - ... e. They adopted a constitution, which for completeness is probably a good example to some of us white people. They adopted by-laws. The provision, either of that constitution or by-laws, or perhaps both, was that the meetings in different tribes should be held on a certain day in June, after the middle of June, as I recollect it; that those meetings should elect delegates to attend a general council on the first Tuesday or some day in July following. Those by-laws provided for an order of business, and I have them here. They provided that after the meeting was called together the president—mark you, the by-laws governed the meeting in the different tribes, as I recollect it—that the presiding officer, which in the case of the general council was the president of the general council and in the other tribes was their presiding officer—that he should call the meeting to order and should appoint a committee on credentials. I am going to pass that. My time is short. But let me say that at that meeting held in White Earth, the one where Mr. Dickens presided without any authority whatever, he had no authority under the constitution and by-laws of this general council that is represented here; he had no right to sit there. They did not follow the proceedings, and what Mr. Broker and these other Indians tell you should have taken place did not take place. A committee on credentials was not appointed, and so there at White Earth, when Mr. Dickens refused to follow the by-laws in reference to the order of business, they left that council room and went into a meeting by themselves. Mr. Caswell was there and Mr. Broker was there, and if I misstate it they may correct me. They went and held a meeting by themselves and elected delegates, and both delegations came to Cass Lake. When they presented themselves at Cass Lake, under the by-laws Mr. Morrison, then president of the general council, should have presided. He did not preside. Mr. BALLINGER. Yes; he did. Mr. McDonald. The matter was turned over, as I understand it, by Mr. Morrison to Mr. Dickens. Mr. MoRRIsoN. Do you make that as a positive statement, that I did that ? Mr. McDon ALD. No; not as I understand it. Mr. MoRRISON. I just want to understand it. Mr. McDoNALD. No. Now, this is a fact. There is in the office of the Bureau of Indian Affairs a report of what took place, of all that took place. It is a fact that Mr. Dickens did preside at that meeting when they started in to transact their business. Those gentlemen who had a protesting delegation asked that their rights to sit there, that the question of whether or not the meeting at White Earth was a fair one or not, be passed upon, and they asked that a committee on credentials should be appointed. It was refused. There was some comment on the question of whether or not the by-laws of the General Council of Chippewas of Minnesota should govern or not, and so the gentlemen who were protesting that the action was absolutely illegal and contrary to the constitution, withdrew, whether or not under the circumstances pointed out by Mr. Broker, I do not know, but they withdrew and held their own council in an adjoining building, I think the armory or the city hall, and they elected officers. Now, let me go back. In 1915, Mr. Morrison, then acting president of this general council, called what is now known by the Indians as a secret council meeting. Instead of designating the time in June when the councils in the tribes should be held to elect delegates to the council meeting, he called it in February instead of calling it as provided by the constitution and by-laws, and the action of the general council at the previous meeting at Bemidji, July 9. He called it to be held at White Earth, on the White Earth Reservation, June 12. It is true it is claimed that notice of that meeting was published in the Tomahawk, but you have been told that many do not take the Tomahawk or do not read it. It is printed in the English language. It is claimed also that this notice was spread about, but the fact is that it was a meeting held illegally and at the wrong place, some hundred miles away. Now, at that meeting they passed two infamous resolutions. Gus H. Beaulieu, at that time, I am informed, was a member of the general council executive committee. There was passed a resolution requesting Congress to appropriate to Gus H. Beaulieu for his services and expenses in connection with the Mille Lac litigation, $2,500 a year for 184 years, making a total of about $45,500, and appropriating to Mr. Fairbanks, the gentleman who sits here, naming him, and Waweyakamik and Andrew Sakesik, members of the Mille Lac Tribe, acquaintances of mine, $3,500 for the same period, making a total, Mr. Chairman, of $110,500, if my computation is correct. In addition to that, that secret meeting there, some time ago—and I want to give Mr. Beaulieu credit for action in connection with that, because he was the gentleman who took steps to rescind the matter after the matter became generally known—some time ago in the early morning of one of those nights, I think the night of the 12th, that same body of men, when there were only a few present—some give it at 25 and some 35 out of an entire delegation of 120–passed a resolution providing that there should be created a Chippewa claims commission, and named the men. Mr. Fairbanks was one. Some other gentlemen who are here were on that commission, and the president of the general council. They gave them full power to act in reference to the Chippewa matters, including these matters now before this committee, as I recall it. Not only that, but they appointed Mr. Arthur C. Beaulieu as the attorney in fact and agent for all the Chippewas of Minnesota, to make contracts for them with attorneys and in relation to the affairs of the Chippewa Indians. These gentlemen seemed to realize that when that became known there would be an uprising among the Chippewa Indians, that there would be an uprising among some of the half-breeds, and that thing rew until the meeting in 1917. It is to the credit of Mr. Frank eaulieu that he, seconded by Mr. Morrison, moved that those proceedings be set aside and annulled.