Thursday, September 1, 2016

8/31/16 Blue Galactic Eagle/ Blue Crystal Hand - Lunar Scorpion Moon of Challenge, Day 9

Modoc Chief Yellow Hammer painted in traditional clothing by E.A Burbank, 1901.

The Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma is a federally recognized tribe of Modoc people, the smallest tribe in Oklahoma and located in Ottawa County in the northeast corner of the state. They are descendants of Captain Jack's band of Modoc people, removed in 1873 from their traditional territory in northern California and southern Oregon after the Modoc Wars. They were exiled to the Quapaw Agency in Indian Territory (now Oklahoma), where they were colocated with the Shawnee people from east of the Mississippi River.

In the 1950s the federally recognized status of the Klamath Reservation (where other Modoc were colocated) and the Modoc was terminated, ending federal assistance to the two tribes. The Modoc tribe in Oklahoma reorganized independently and gained federal recognition in 1978. They have also acquired a land base and have introduced bison to their area. They have pursued several avenues of economic development in what was an inhospitable environment compared to northern California.

The Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma is headquartered in Miami, Oklahoma and based largely in Ottawa County. Of the 250 enrolled tribal members, 120 live within the state of Oklahoma. The Tribe's Chief is Bill Follis, who was instrumental in securing renewed federal recognition in 1978 after the tribe's official status was terminated in the 1950s along with that of the Klamath Reservation. The Modoc tribal jurisdictional area falls within Ottawa County, Oklahoma. He also led the tribe in acquiring a land base. The tribe's government complex includes an archives and library, which is the only one in the area dedicated to Native American history and genealogy.

The ancestral home of the Modoc Tribe of Oklahoma consisted of some 5,000 square miles along what is now the California-Oregon border. While their tribal territory encompassed a small area, it was one of great biological diversity. On the west loomed the perennially snow-capped peaks of the majestic Cascade Mountains; to the east was a barren wasteland of alkali flats; towering forests of Ponderosa pines were to the north while the present-day Lava Beds National Monument, formed their southern boundary.

Descended from indigenous cultures who had been in the region for 10,000 years, the historic Modoc were culturally unique. They spoke the Klamath language, as did the neighboring (and competing) Klamath people. Occasionally they formed war parties to drive out unwelcome visitors or raid neighboring tribes. The Modoc were hunters, fishermen, and gatherers who followed the seasons for food. They lived their lives in relative obscurity. The arrival of European Americans in the early 19th century changed their lives forever.

The intrusion of fur traders, followed by European settlers into the Pacific Northwest, had a variety of social and economic effects on the Native populations. The Modoc bartered with fur traders for guns and horses, which they found necessary to compete with neighboring tribes. But eventually the traders and the prospectors gave way to farmers and ranchers, who competed for land and resources and had little regard for the Native inhabitants. These new American invaders traveled west in the mid-19th century by way of the Oregon Trail, which passed directly through traditional Modoc lands.

The Modoc learned to live peacefully with the farming and ranching newcomers, often working for them and trading for livestock and other necessities. The flow of non-Indians into their ancestral homelands had an enormous effect on the culture of the Modoc people. They embraced many of the settlers' ways. Eventually they adopted clothing patterned after non-Indians with whom they socialized in the nearby town of Yreka, California. The Modoc sometimes used names given to them by the white man. Keintpoos became known as Captain Jack, while others became documented in American records as Scarfaced Charley, Steamboat Frank, Bogus Charley, Shack Nasty Jim, Long Jim, Curly-headed Doctor, and Hooker Jim.

The increasing number of settlers needed more land to farm and to graze. As a result of the enormous pressure of white infiltration into Indian lands in California and Oregon, the Modoc, Klamath and Yahooskin Band of Snake tribes ceded their lands to the United States government and signed a joint reservation treaty in 1864. The Modoc agreed to live alongside the Klamath Indians, although these were traditional enemies.

Life on the reservation was difficult. The more numerous Klamaths harassed the Modoc, and the Indian agent neglected them. The Modoc became increasingly frustrated. By 1865, Captain Jack led his band of Modoc off the reservation and returned to their territory of the Lost River (California) area of Northern California.

The treaty signed in 1864 was not ratified by the US Senate until 1870. For two years Captain Jack refused to return to the Klamath reservation, requesting separate property on the Lost River for the Modoc. But with his band in violation of the treaty, the U.S. Army determined to capture the wandering Modoc and return them to the Klamath reservation in Oregon. The confrontation caused the explosive Modoc War.

To solve the conflict between the Modoc and Klamath at the reservation, the US Commissioner of Indian Affairs decided to relocate the Modoc to the Quapaw Agency in Indian Territory. The Modoc were ordered to pack all their belongings for a long journey but were not told of their destination. On October 12, 1873, 155 Modoc: 42 men, 59 women, and 54 children, were loaded on 27 wagons and departed Fort Klamath, Oregon under guard of Captain H.C. Hasbrouck and soldiers of Battery B, 4th Artillery.

The first years following removal to Indian Territory were difficult for the Modoc. They suffered much sickness and many hardships due to the corrupt, cruel administration of Agent Jones. During their first winter at the Quapaw Agency, the government did not provide any food, clothing, or medical supplies to them. Jones and the Quapaw Agency did not receive funds for their support for nearly a year after their arrival, when $15,000 was allocated.

Under such conditions, the death rate of children and the aged was especially high. By 1879, after six years at the Quapaw Agency, 54 people had died and only 99 remained of the tribe. By the time of the land allotments to Modoc households in 1891 under the Dawes Act, only 68 adults were left. Many had been born after removal. Especially in the early years, the people were highly dependent on their survival,on gifts of money and clothing from eastern charitable organizations, representing many people who were outraged by the government's treatment of the Modoc.

Soon after the Modoc were settled at the Quapaw Agency, Agent Jones restricted them from trading with anyone but a store next to the agency building; they were prohibited from going to merchants in nearby Seneca, Missouri. Superintendent Hoag's first cousin, T. E. Newlin, operated the store. When Seneca residents filed numerous complaints concerning the intolerable conditions suffered by the Modoc, their claims were dismissed by the federal government. Congressional representatives thought these represented disgruntled merchants who were bitter at being cut out of the lucrative Modoc trade.

The Modoc mortality rate continued to climb. Because of persistent complaints by the Modoc and their non-Indian neighbors, Jones' Indian Agency was investigated by the Office of Indian Affairs in 1874 and again in 1875, but few changes and no criminal charges were made as a result. Following a third investigation in 1878, his system of nepotism and corruption was officially reported. Jones and his family members were described as receiving kickbacks from local merchants for the inflated prices and inferior quality of goods and services provided to the agency. It was not until 1879 that Hiram Jones and his family ring were relieved of their duties at the Quapaw Agency.

The Modoc men and women persevered in adapting to survive. They worked at anything that brought income. The men worked on the farms of their white neighbors, and hauled materials and supplies to surrounding towns. The women sold their beadwork and intricately woven basketry. Both men and women worked in the fields.

Soon they were cultivating their own land and continued to aimprove the condition and productivity of their farmlands and livestock herds. They were described as improving each year in assimilationist practices of dress, farming, house maintenance, and encouraging their children in reservation and other schools. The Quapaw Agency staff considered them superior among the tribes they supervised.

The Modoc also became active in the church established for them by the Society of Friends. By 1881, most had converted to the Quaker faith. Three of Captain Jack's warriors, formerly referred to as "blood thirsty and savage renegades," became recorded ministers of the Friends Church. Steamboat Frank, who later took the name Frank Modoc, was the first full-blood American Indian to become a recorded minister of the Society of Friends. He was also the Modoc Church's first minister.*



Kin 255: Blue Galactic Eagle

I harmonize in order to create
Modeling mind
I seal the output of vision
With the galactic tone of integrity
I am guided by the power of self-generation.

From the galactic vantage point, there is the drama in heaven, the drama on earth, and finally, the resurrection of the ultimate return of the Eternal.*

*Star Traveler's 13 Moon Almanac of Synchronicity, Galactic Research Institute, Law of Time Press, Ashland, Oregon, 2016-2017.

The Sacred Tzolk'in 

Muladhara Chakra (Seli Plasma)

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