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Rocky Boy Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana Needs Your Help
Rocky Boy Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana needs funding to establish offices at Blackfeet Reservation, Crow-Northern Cheyenne Reservation, Flathead Reservation, Fort Belknap Reservation and at Great Falls, Montana where Hill 57 Reservation is located. Our goal is to gain Tribal Recognition at Blackfeet Reservation, Crow-Northern Cheyenne Reservation, Flathead Reservation and Fort Belknap Reservation and Federal Recognition for Rocky Boys Tribe of Chippewa Indians at Great Falls with Reservation. Your donation will be greatly appreciated. Below is my paypal link where you can donate to this very important cause for survival. If you are interested in becoming a member of Rocky Boys Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana, you can fill out a form here . In comments box, please include your tribal affiliation. In Montana, members of Blackfeet, Crow-Northern Cheyenne, Flathead, Fort Belknap and Rocky Boys Reservation are automatically members of Rocky Boys Tribe of Chippewa Indians of Montana. However, if you are a member from another tribe (Reservation) your application will be approved if you have proof of membership from your tribe (Reservation).
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Fort Shaw Chippewa Reservation
We have an ancient event to very carefully investigate. Fort Shaw Military Reservation was set aside on April 25, 1892 to be an Indian school. The date coincides with the infamous 1892 10¢ an acre treaty or McCumber Agreement. Originally, the military Reservation covered 29,843 acres or 46 sq. mi. On April 25, 1892, the military Reservation was set aside to be an Indian school. On July 6, 1893, 4,999 acres from the Fort Shaw Military Reservation, was supposedly reserved for school purposes. On July 6, 1905, an additional 4,364 acres was added to the supposed school. In 1904, the United States ratified the infamous 1892 10¢ an acre treaty, which is also known as the McCumber Agreement. They broke treaty promises and eradicated the new Montana Chippewa Reservations they set aside long before 1892.
According to official reports from Robert Shaw Oliver on July 22, 1905, only 9,363.5 acres was needed for the school while the remaining 20,479.5 acres, was found useless and brought under the control of the Secretary of the Interior. That 20,479.5 acres was not useless land. It was home to several hundred Indians including the parents of the children attending the Indian school. White leaders, who were bothered by prophecy, could not wait to eradicate this 29,843 acre Chippewa Reservation. They probably commenced to relocate the Chippewa's of Fort Shaw Chippewa Reservation, in November of 1909, by train and also by horse. Many Chippewa's refused to board trains according to the Lemhi. Supposedly, the Fort Shaw Indian School Reservation was closed in 1910 because of declining enrollment.
Census of 1910
In 1910, a census was taken for the Fort Shaw Indian School Reservation. A total of 364 students attended the school. A decline in enrollment was not a factor in closing the school. Of the total number of students, 156 were Chippewa or nearly half the schools students were Chippewa. Only 10 to 13 of the Chippewa children lived on a Montana Reservation. A Little Rock community was listed and it could be either the Little Rock cdp located on Red Lake Reservation, or the unincorporated community of Littlerock, Washington. If it is located on Red Lake Reservation, than 13 Chippewa children lived on Reservations. We also have to suggest Dodson and Harlem, both of which are 2 miles from Fort Belknap Reservation and are predominantly Indian towns. We also have to suggest the community of Peakan. Either it's the Piegan community on Blackfeet Reservation (the site of the second Blackfeet Reservation Agency), or the community of Peigan, Montana which is now known as Conrad, Montana. The Blackfeet including the Piegan (73 were Piegan and 5 were Blackfeet), numbered 78 students. At least 29 of the 78 Blackfeet including Piegan, students, lived off Blackfeet Reservation. Sioux and the Assiniboine (the Assiniboine must not be confused with the Sioux), made up 60 of the schools student population. Only 1 Assiniboine student actually attended the school and that student was from Poplar. At least 9 were from off Fort Peck Reservation.
Flathead including the Pend d'Oreille and also the Kootenai (33 were Flathead including the Pend d'Oreille and 3 were Kootenai), made up 36 of the schools student population. All were from Flathead Reservation. Gros Ventre made up 14 of the schools student population. Twelve of the Gros Ventre students were from off Fort Belknap Reservation. Eight were from Harlem and 4 from Fort Benton. Cree students made up 12 of the schools student population. Five lived on Reservations and 7 off Reservations. However, if the Peakan community 3 of the Cree lived at was located on Blackfeet Reservation, than 8 lived on Reservations. Shoshone including the Snake, made up 5 of the schools student population. All were from Fort Hall Reservation and Jocko (aka Flathead) Reservation. Only 3 of the schools students were Cheyenne. They all were from Northern Cheyenne Reservation. No Crow students attended Fort Shaw Indian School. This 1910 census is actually the number of children led by chief Rocky Boy. All were Chippewa.
On the map below, you'll notice the obvious blunder. It's a map of an Indian Reservation. It's not a map of a school. By school, they meant, a school to allow the parents of the Chippewa children, to live there. Chippewa leaders reacted with extreme anger during those times if their children were taken from them. It is probably the reason why the Little Shell Chippewa's of Montana are the only Chippewa's clinging to their Chippewa identity now. So the real population of the Fort Shaw Chippewa Reservation was actually significantly higher in 1909. It may have been close to 500. For nearly 20 years, the school educated Chippewa children. That includes teaching them how to speak English. We know what Reservations they came from. Blackfeet Reservation, Crow-Northern Cheyenne Reservation, Flathead Reservation, Fort Assiniboine Indian Reservation, Fort Belknap Reservation, Fort Hall Reservation, and Fort Peck Reservation. And also from Indian Reservations out of Idaho and Montana. We also have to include the old Judith Basin Indian Reservation. At least 13 of the students lived very near or within the old Judith Basin Reservation. We also have to include possible Chippewa Reservations at the Choteau and Dupuyer region, as well as the Augusta and St. Peters Mission regions.
1909: The Deportations
In 1908, Frank Churchill was sent to Montana to find chief Rocky Boy. He found chief Rocky Boy near Garrison, Montana (the Garrison located near St. Peters Mission or Cascade) and commenced to negotiate with him about the closing of the Fort Shaw Chippewa Reservation. An arrangement was agreed upon in which the Chippewa's agreed to relocate to Blackfeet Reservation, Flathead Reservation, Fort Belknap Reservation including the land added on per Churchill's request which is 2,592 sq. mi., Fort Hall Reservation, and Northern Cheyenne Reservation. We know in November of 1909, the Chippewa's were deported to the 4th Blackfeet Reservation and Fort Belknap Reservation. We don't know for certain if the Chippewa's were deported to Flathead Reservation, Fort Hall Reservation, and the Northern Cheyenne Reservation. It is no coincidence that the Deportations of November of 1909 and the June 30, 1910 closing of Fort Shaw Indian School Reservation, were months apart. In 1901, the school had a student population of 316. So the Deportations of November of 1909 was actually when this Chippewa Reservation was closed. It became official on June 30, 1910. It was the Seven Fires Prophecy which motivated the United States to close the Reservation.
Those Chippewa's who did not live on a Reservation before the Reservation was closed, lived at these following locations: Havre including Big Sandy and Box Elder, had 35 (31 were Chippewa and 4 were Sioux who were really Chippewa); Choteau including Saypo, had 29 (23 were Chippewa, 4 were Cree who were really Chippewa, and 2 were Blackfeet who were really Cree who were really Chippewa); Dupuyer had 24 (10 were Chippewa and 14 were Piegan or Blackfeet who were really Cree who were really Chippewa); St. Peters Mission had 22 (21 were Chippewa and 1 was Sioux who were really Chippewa); Augusta including Clemons, had 14 (10 were Chippewa, 3 were Sioux who were really Chippewa, and 1 was Piegan who were really Cree who were really Chippewa). The original Blackfeet Reservation and the third Blackfeet Reservation, were set aside for the Blackfeet, Flathead, Nez Perce who are the Amikwa Chippewa's, and River Crow. It was not set aside for the Sioux, which means something is wrong. Historical evidence proves the Sioux were not set aside a Blackfeet Reservation. Fort Peck Reservation is within the third Blackfeet Reservation.
Eleven Chippewa's lived at the Kalispel (7) and Whitefish (4) regions. There may have been a Chippewa Reservation located in that region. Only 2 lived at Great Falls which is mysterious. We know a large Chippewa population lived near and adjacent to Great Falls, in 1909. There may have been other Chippewa Reservations at Augusta and the Choteau and Dupuyer region. We know Fort Assiniboine Indian Reservation was only a few miles from Havre, in 1909. And St. Peters Mission was probably another region where a Chippewa Reservation was located. St. Peters Mission was located 10.5 miles northwest of Cascade, in 1909, just within the mountains. You probably get a good view of Square Butte from that location. Square Butte is 11 miles northeast of St. Peters Mission. Fort Shaw is 5 miles northwest of Square Butte. Before 1881, St. Peters Mission was located near Ulm and before that at Rainbow Falls at Great Falls. Before that, St. Peters Mission was located near what is now Fort Shaw and before that it was located near Choteau.
In late 1865, the United States invaded the Sun River Valley. By early 1866, Chippewa soldiers had driven the white invaders back to Helena. However, the United States established Camp Reynolds (at Fort Shaw) in 1866 and then built Fort Shaw a year later. Fort Shaw is 20 miles west of Great Falls. The Mullan Road War was intensifying. Also, on July 10, 1866, the United States established Camp Cooke, which was a little west of the mouth of the Judith River, about 75 miles northeast of Great Falls. In 1869, the United States converted Fort Benton into a military fortification by sending their soldiers from Camp Cooke, to Fort Benton which was closer to the Great Falls region. Fort Benton is 30 miles northeast of Great Falls. On November 30, 1869, the United States established Camp Baker and later named the camp Fort Logan. About 55 miles south of Great Falls, Fort Logan was used by the United States, during the American assaults on the Chippewa settlements around the Great Falls of the Missouri River region, in 1876-1877. A total of 3 American forts, were within a days ride from the Great Falls region, in 1876. In June of 1875, the whites built Fort Walsh in Saskatchewan. However, it didn't stop 10,000s of Chippewa's from migrating north.