Collection: American Missionary Association

American Missionary Association

Brief sketches from the American Missionary Association for the years 1888 to 1895. The main purpose of this organization was to eliminate slavery, to educate African Americans, to promote racial equality, and to promote Christian values. They discussed many missionary topics in each publication, Blacks, Indians, schools, and much more.

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The Government and the Indians

On the 13th of March, some of the Secretaries of the missionary societies, and others interested in the welfare of the Indians, had an interview with President Harrison and with Secretary Noble, of the Interior Department. We were kindly received, and the Secretary solicited information from us as to the methods in which he could aid in furtherance of Indian civilization. A number of suggestions were made in response, and the following outline is given as a summary of the points presented to the Secretary: That the appointment or retention of all officers and employees in the Indian service of the Government shall be on the sole ground of fitness—that ability, integrity and an interest in the welfare of the Indians, shall constitute the only required conditions. We are not ignorant of the difficulties involved in securing such persons, especially with the low salaries paid to some of these employees; and we shall be abundantly satisfied with the purpose of the Government to reach the nearest attainable success in this direction. That the Government shall make adequate appropriations for the establishment and maintenance of suitable schools for the education of all Indian pupils—whether these schools be sustained and controlled wholly by the Government or in cooperation with missionary societies. The millions of dollars now due to the Indians by treaty stipulations, for educational purposes, should not be idle in...

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United Brotherhood of Georgia

The most important gathering of Negroes that probably has ever occurred, was in Macon, Ga., a few weeks since. Five hundred leading Negro representatives convened to discuss and adopt “a thorough plan of State organization.” A permanent organization was effected and named the “United Brotherhood of Georgia,” the purpose of which is “to resist oppression, wrong and injustice.” We note the following resolutions, which were passed by the convention: Resolved, That we, in convention assembled, respectfully but earnestly demand of the powers that be, that the Negro be given what, and only what, he is entitled to. Resolved further, That never, until we are in the fullest enjoyment of our rights at the ballot-box, will we cease to agitate and work for what justly belongs to us in the shape of suffrage. Further resolved, That it shall be the policy of the colored race to vote so as to bring the greatest division to the white voters of this country, for in this we believe lies the boon of our desire. The last resolution is not entirely plain to us, and we refrain from comment upon it, but the convention itself, the fact of leadership taking shape among the Negroes, and the forth-putting of their purposes, are very significant. When the Glenn Bill was born, and when the Georgia House of Representatives stood sponsor for its baptism, we believed...

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Mission Services at Two Kettle Village

By Miss M. M. Lickorish The church at Two Kettle Village on the Cheyenne was dedicated May 19th. I was delighted to receive an invitation from Mr. Riggs to accompany the party from Oahe. We crossed the Missouri River in a boat, and on the other side took the carriage that had to be sent around by Pierre, an extra distance of thirty-two miles, in order to cross on the bridge. Doctor and Mr. Frederick Riggs, from Santee, now joined us, and the day being pleasant, the prairie covered with the wild flowers so abundant here, we had a...

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The Southern Situation, Some Suggestive Facts

First Fact. The condition of the colored man In the South is becoming more pitiable and precarious. Mr. Grady, in his last speech, announced the unalterable purpose of the Southern whites never to submit to Negro rule, and we read not long since of a “quiet election” held in a Southern city, because the colored people, duly warned, kept away from the polls. We know something, also, of the struggles of that people against almost insuperable difficulties in trying to obtain food, homes and education. In addition to all this, the public press keeps us informed with sad frequency of the repeated murders inflicted upon the defenseless colored people. Second Fact. We learn with gratification that Southern people of high standing denounce these outrages. Governor Richardson, of South Carolina, assured a colored delegation that called upon him, that he had offered a reward for the apprehension of the Barnwell murderers, and pledged his sacred word that nothing would be undone on his part to bring the lynchers to condign punishment. Senator Wade Hampton is said to have endorsed the sentiments of the Governor, and leading Southern papers have censured in unmeasured terms this outrage. But as yet these murderers have not been arrested, and we presume that no one expects they will be. The murderers of Mr. Clayton, of Arkansas, who presumed to run as an independent candidate for...

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Rome and the Negro

One of our most interesting exchanges is an “Illustrated Roman Catholic Quarterly edited and published by the Fathers of St. Joseph’s Missionary Society of the Sacred Heart,” its “Record of Missions among the Colored People of the United States.” We need not say that we have no sympathy with Romanism and its errors, nor with the “Missionary Society of the Sacred Heart,” and its efforts to plant Romanism among the colored people of the South. We can, however, but admire the fidelity of the church to its doctrines, and the Christian example it gives to all missionary societies in its recognition of man as man. The quotations which we make from the Roman Catholic Quarterly will account for the strong hold that Romanism is beginning to secure upon the negro race. The following, for example, is a Roman Catholic tribute to John Brown: On the 2nd of December next, thirty years will have passed since John Brown, in his sixtieth winter, ascended the scaffold and gave his life for the colored race. Connecticut gave the hero birth —from heroes; New York, in her Adirondack recesses, developed in him that spirit of liberty which Ohio had nurtured, and is forever honored by his grave; while Virginia, “building better than she knew,” bestowed the martyr’s crown. It was necessary that one man should die for the people (John xviii, 14), and...

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The Santee Normal Training School and Indian Missions

Running Antelope, an Indian chief, describing the condition of the Indians, said: “There was once a beautiful, clear lake of water, full of fish. The fish were happy and content, had plenty to eat, and nothing to trouble them. One day a man came and threw in a lump of mud, which frightened the fishes much and disturbed the water. Another day a man came again, and threw in some more mud, and even again and again, until the water became so thick that the fish could not see at all; they were so blinded and so frightened that they ran against one another, and they ran their noses out of the water into the mud, where many of them died. In fact, they are in a bad condition, indeed. Now, the pond is the Indian country, the fishes are the Indians, the false treaties and promises of the white men are the lumps of mud,” and, turning to the missionaries, he said: “I hope you have come to clear up the water.” A glance at the work of the A.M.A. among the Indians will show that the missionaries are clearing up the water. We all have heard of the Santee Normal Training School for Indians, in Nebraska. There is much in the name itself, and yet it is impossible to have a clear idea of the work done...

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Perils of Missionary Life

Perils Of Missionary Life Rev. T.L. Riggs, our missionary at Oahe, Dakota, thus describes the loss of a team and the peril of his fellow missionary, Rev. J.F. Cross: “I wished to cross my team on the ice to the west side of the Missouri and keep it there for use during the breaking up of the river. Being very busy with some writing, I asked Mr. Cross to take my team over when he started to return to the White River, sending a man with him. Mr. Cross’s team went over safely, but mine, which Mr. Cross himself was driving, broke through and were drowned, in spite of every effort of the two men. Mr. Cross had a narrow escape. He managed to save the wagon, but the horses went down with harness on as they were driven. Mr. Cross took the loss so to heart, that together with the strain and agony of the moment, it quite prostrated him. He started for White River in a day or two after, though I felt that he was hardly fit to go.” First Fruits Rev. C.L. Hall, Fort Berthold, Dak. In the fall of 1879, a young Gros-Ventre Indian named Dahpitsishesh, “The Bear’s Tooth,” began to attend the day school at Fort Berthold, and although he was over twenty years old and not very quick to learn, he surpassed...

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The Ramona School

By Dist. Sec. J.E. Roy. I had the pleasure, in Santa Fé, January 13th, of attending an entertainment given by the Ramona pupils in honor of Miss Platt, one of their teachers. Gov. Prince and his wife, and several of the citizens, were present as invited guests. After the singing of several songs, and a statement made by Prof. Elmore Chase, the Principal, fourteen of the scholars rendered, in the action of nature and the speaking of English, Mrs. Bentley’s dialogue, “The Old Year’s Vision and the New Year’s Message,” as found in the January number of The Youth’s Temperance Banner. One of the large boys first came in as an old man, clad in a mantle and trembling on a staff, to repeat the “Old Year’s Vision.” Then came in, one after another, a dozen boys and girls, to recite the greeting of the several months. It was a temperance exhibit, and so each one had a testimony for that cause. January, bearing a New Year’s card in hand, declared: “I’ve promised that not a drop of wine shall touch these temperance lips of mine.” February bore a fancy valentine, with an appropriate motto. March lifted aloft a new kite, with “Kites may sail far up in the sky, but on strong drink I’ll never get high.” July, bearing a flag and a bunch of fire-crackers, declares: “I...

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Oahe School, Dakota

By Miss Julia E. Pratt A very sad incident came into our life as a school last winter, which has accentuated anew the ignorance and the superstitious heathenism of these Indian people. One of our little boys was sent to the dormitory one morning to do some work to which he objected, and, while pretending to obey, he took one of the other little boys with him and ran away. Their absence was not discovered until it was too late to overtake them, and as their home was only ten miles away, and we knew they were good walkers, as all Indians are almost from babyhood, we had every reason to believe they would reach home in safety. They had started before daylight, and without any breakfast, and the little boy who was enticed away had no overcoat nor mittens, but had gone on the impulse of the moment without taking any extra clothing. About ten o’clock, it grew very cold, and as the little fellow had on shoes, to which he was unaccustomed, his feet became so cold and tired that he could not go on. Then the boy who had coaxed him away gave him his overcoat and mittens and went on, reaching home about noon, telling that he had run away, and that he had left Jaran about half way. Jaran’s father did not believe the...

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The 7th Annual Mohonk Conference

The seventh annual gathering of this Conference, Oct. 2-5, was the largest ever assembled. Among those present for the first time were Ex-President Hayes, Gen. O.O. Howard, Gen. John Eaton, Prof. Wayland and Dr. Wayland. The newspaper press, religious and secular, was very fully represented; Abbott, Buckley, Dunning, Gilbert, Ward and Wayland are perhaps best known. The venerable Judge Strong well represented the law, while the absence of Senator Dawes was sincerely regretted. A marked feature of the Conference was the presence of Gen. Morgan, Commissioner of Indian Affairs. For weeks prior to the meeting of the Conference, rumors had gone abroad that he intended to abolish the “contract schools” —that is, schools of the missionary societies which the Government by a “contract” agrees to assist. Articles had appeared in the newspapers remonstrating against this course, and it was believed that this topic would be one of most practical interest in the Conference. The Commissioner early in the meetings read a paper outlining his plan for the establishment of Government schools for all Indian children—the attendance to be compulsory. The omission of all mention of the “contract schools” in this paper confirmed the impression to which rumor had given currency. An animated discussion followed the reading of his paper, in which the Commissioner freely participated. It appeared that he had been misunderstood—at least in so far as any immediate...

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What is a missionary school?

The Vernacular In Indian Schools This question is not settled. One thing that has kept it unsettled has been the uncertain use of the term “missionary schools” in the Orders of the Indian Department. What is precisely a missionary school? Let me try to explain. There are three kinds of schools in the nomenclature of the Indian Office, based on the sources of their support. Government Schools, supported wholly by Government appropriations—such as those at Carlisle, Genoa, etc. These may be left out of the account in this discussion, for no one objects to the Government’s directing the studies in them. Contract Schools, so called because the missionary societies which sustain them receive under contract with the Government a certain amount of money in aid of their support. The school at Santee, Nebraska, and the school at Yankton, Dakota, are specimens of this class. But these are mission schools, for the societies which support them would not continue to do so for a day except for their missionary character; and yet these schools are classed by the Department not as missionary but as contract schools. Missionary Schools, which are supported wholly by missionary funds, the Government contributing nothing. Here, again, in the recent order, the Department employs the confusing use of terms, speaking in general terms of “missionary schools,” and then of missionary schools under the charge of “native...

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1889 – 1891 Indian Mission Staff Members

1889 – 1891 Indian Mission Staff Members 1889 Santee Agency, Nebraska Normal Training School Superintendent and Missionary, Rev. A.L. Riggs, Santee Agency, Neb. Treasurer Mr. Joseph H. Steer, Santee Agency, Neb. Teachers Mr. J.A. Chadbourne, Bridgewater, Mass. Miss Harriet B. Ilsley, Newark, N.J. Miss Susie M. Furman, Canandaigua, Mich. Miss Edith Leonard, Scotland, Mass. Miss Cora I. Riggs, Santee Agency, Neb. Miss Ella Worden, Topeka, Kan. Native Teachers, James Garvie, Santee Agency, Neb. Jennie M. Cox, Santee Agency, Neb. Eugenia LaMoore, Brown Earth, Dak. Matrons, (Dakota Home), Miss L.H. Douglass, New Haven, Conn. (Bird’s Nest), Miss Harriet A. Brown, Rocky Point, N.Y. (Young Men’s Hall), Miss Jennie E. Kennedy, Montrose, Iowa. (Boys’ Cottage), Miss S. Lizzie Voorhees, Rocky Hill, N.J. (Dining Hall), Miss Nettie Calhoun, Kenton, Ohio. (Whitney Hall), Mrs. E.E. Scolford, Chicago, Ill. Missionaries, Mrs. A.L. Riggs, Santee Agency, Neb. ” J.H. Steer,Santee Agency, Neb. ” A.H. Stone, Philipstone, Mass. Industrial Department, Joseph H. Steer, Santee Agency, Neb. A.H. Stone, Philipstone, Mass. Edgar H. Scotford, Chicago, Ill. Reuben Cash, Niobrara, Neb. Ivor P. Wold, Santee Agency, Neb. Supt. Printing Office, Chas. R. Lawson, Santee Agency, Neb. Native Pastors and Helpers, Rev. Artemas Ehnamani, Santee Agency, Neb. Mr. Eli Abraham, Santee Agency, Neb. Ponca Agency Minister and Teacher, Rev. J.E. Smith, De Smet, Dak. Mrs. J.E. Smith, De Smet, Dak. Oahe, Dakota Oahe Industrial School Superintendent and Missionary, Rev....

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Missionary Life Among the Dakota Indians

By Mrs. J.F. Cross It is hard to get the most interesting experiences of a missionary’s life, because they belong to the daily routine and so are often unmentioned. But here is a description of life and travel among the Indians, by the wife of a missionary just going to the Dakotas: The land of the Dakotas—what a distance! How long the miles seemed from my home! How frightful the land seemed to me, from the tales of blizzards and cyclones! How strange to go to live among the Sioux Indians, known to me principally for the Minnesota, Fort Fetterman and Custer massacres; to be a friend to Sitting Bull, Brave Bull, Gall, Grass, Swift Bear, Red Cloud and many others with names no less picturesque! With such impressions I left my home to accompany my husband to his home and work at Rosebud Agency, South Dakota. I was soon relieved of the idea of the distance, for only a few hours took us across Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and Minnesota to the border of Dakota. Here we left the railroad to attend the general conference of the Dakota Mission at Flandreau. How quickly all the impressions of years can be changed, when the impressions are wrong and we see the true state of affairs. In this case, seeing hundreds of bronzed faces, lighted up with joy, as they...

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One Day’s Missionary Work

A Trip Among the Out Stations The out-station work among the Indians is a feature almost peculiar to the Indian Missions of the A.M.A. These stations are the picket-lines pushed forward into the Reservations beyond the line of established schools and missions. Each one consists of a cheap home connected sometimes with a cheap school-house, and these are occupied by one or two native Indian missionaries who teach and preach, and thus accomplish an immediate good and lay the foundation for the more permanent church and school. The Association has about twenty such stations on the Cheyenne and other rivers in Dakota. One of the teachers from Oahe gives a racy sketch of a trip among some of the out-stations. We make room for a large extract, regretting that we have not space for more. The Journey We started Thursday morning, going about seven miles above the Mission to cross the river. We took dinner at the house of a white man who has an Indian wife, and then started out on the long drive. Our direction was almost due west, a little south toward the Cheyenne River. We reached an out-station on the Cheyenne about dark, where James Brown, a Santee Indian, is stationed. Two of our Santee school-girls are here, and it was encouraging to see their neat dress, and hear them use their English, though they...

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