The Era Of The Late Nineteenth Century Reformers

1486 WordsApr 14, 20156 Pages
In the late nineteenth century reformers’ efforts to “save the Indians” failed due to them taking away their way of life having the conform to the ideas of the white Americans. Reformers attempt to help the Native Americans was definitely unhelpful. The reformers main goal was to make them conform to the way of life as white Americans. Reformers took them of their land, took away their culture, and there was of life with new laws and reform that was supposed to help the Indians but instead it hurt them and their culture. Also the younger generations were forced to study in schools the white American way of life. They were taught the American history according to the white Americans, their language was forbidden in the schools and they…show more content…
Ella C. Deloria, A Yankton Soiux said “ It wasn 't easy to make a spiritual and social adjustment. The people were too used to living in large family groups, cooperatively and happily. Now, here they were in little father-mother-child units often miles from their other relatives, trying to farm an arid land.” The Dawes Act was the answer to the White Reformer to please the American settlers that were trying to take the land the Indians lived on and help stop the fighting that was going on because of this land. The Dawes Act gave Native Americans a piece of their own land that allow them to own it, which they did not hold the deed to. The Federal Government held the land in trust for twenty-five years awaiting the Indians becoming United States citizens. Despite the alleged safeguards, tribal lands were often lost by fraud or coercion, so that, by 1934, white Americans owned two-thirds of lands originally reserved for Indians.(Schultz,327) The land given to the Indians was undesirable to most because the land was barren and infertile making it hard for the Indians to grow crops and survive of the land. Also with these reservations came schooling for the children of the Indians. Reformers believed that teaching the Indians would help them understand the laws and history of the United States and help with the literacy problem and preparing them for American Citizenship. Commissioner of Indians Affairs, Thomas J. Morgan said “
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