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Alleged Frauds Against Certain Indian Soldiers

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June 8, 1872.—Laid on the table and ordered to he printed.
Mr. BURDETT, from the Committee on Indian Affairs, made the following

REPORT

The Committee on Indian Affairs to whom were referred the sundry papers, documents, and memoranda appertaining to certain transactions of John W. Wright and others with members of the First, Second, and Third Regiments Indian Home Guards, submitted to Congress by the Secretary of the Interior, with his letter of April 30, 1872, in response to the following House resolution: “Resolved, That the Secretary of the Interior be, and he is hereby, directed to transmit to this House copies of all letters, telegrams, and reports of special agents and other official papers or records of his Department pertaining to the payment of bounties, back pay, and pensions to the First, Second, and Third Regiments of Home Guards, together with copies of all letters in the case, taken, from the pension agency at Fort Gibson, Arkansas;” submit the following report:

That from the voluminous papers submitted by the Secretary of the Interior, and the complicated nature of the transactions involved, they have not found it possible, in the limited time allowed for their consideration, to make such a critical examination of the case as to enable them to lay before the House a full report of their conclusions in the matters involved; nor do they think it necessary, at this time, so to do, since there is to be found, among the documents submitted, elaborate and full presentation’s of the facts and the law in the case, as made by a. former Secretary of the Interior, the Solicitor General of the Department of Justice, Hon. Louis B. Gunkle, specially appointed by the Secretary of the Interior to investigate and report upon the whole matter; as well as the reports of experts Williamson and Foster.

The committee have, however, so far examined the proofs as to become satisfied that frauds of a most extraordinary character have been so perpetrated, as that eventually Congress may be called upon to make good losses sustained by the Indian soldiers through the wrongful acts of the said Wright, claiming to have been a duly authorized Government agent; and that it becomes highly important that these records should be put in form for easy access and reference; and they have therefore arranged them with a view to publication, and recommend that the usual number he printed; and they ask leave to male further report upon the matter should a more extended examination of the case seem to require it.

 

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