Tag Archives: Indian boarding schools

Too Much Change

The federal government had sought to integrate, or assimilate, Native Americans into the larger white culture for some time before the Canton Asylum opened. Policy-makers did not try to achieve this goal by meeting Native Americans halfway or by gradually … Continue reading

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Resistance to Boarding Schools

Boarding schools hundreds of miles away from reservations served as a primary tool for the federal government in its attempts to assimilate Native Americans into Anglo culture. By taking children from familiar environments and immersing them into a new one, … Continue reading

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School and Work

The Indian Office liked to hire Native Americans who had been educated in its boarding school system, figuring that graduates would be more familiar with white American culture than people who had stayed on reservations. Unfortunately, many boarding school educations … Continue reading

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Native Americans And WWI

Many people are familiar with the military contributions of Native American Code Talkers during WWII, but don’t know about Native American contributions to the Great War. Over 17,000 males registered for the draft, but many other men volunteered to enter … Continue reading

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The Dismal State of American Indians

John Collier wrote an article in 1929, entitled “Amerindians,” which used measured language and concrete statistics to paint a sober picture of American Indians’ well-being. According to Collier’s figures, the number of Indians who lived in the U.S. had fallen … Continue reading

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The Problem With Indian Boarding Schools

The Meriam survey took about a year to complete, and team members visited numerous Indian boarding schools. In general, they found schools overcrowded, the food poor, and child labor rampant. The team also observed that, “In a number of schools … Continue reading

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The BIA Field Matron Program

Between 1890 and 1938, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) employed women as Field Matrons. Their job was to go into Native American homes to teach domestic science (sewing, cooking, hygiene, etc.) according to middle-class white standards. This was a … Continue reading

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Another Pill to Swallow

When Native Americans were forced to live on reservations, their health declined. Poor food quality led to malnutrition and put them at risk for disease and ill health. Two diseases in particular, trachoma and tuberculosis, devastated Indian populations. Trachoma is … Continue reading

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A New Life

A host of cruel practices were committed in the name of “civilizing” Indians. Though many children endured a hardscrabble life growing up on reservations, many others went to government boarding schools. Sometimes children were forcibly taken from their parents and … Continue reading

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