San Francisco Cala. February 22nd 1860
Hon T.J.D. Fuller Second Auditor Treas'y Dept.
I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 10th ult. containing a statement of differences in the settlement of my accounts for the 1st, 2nd and 3rd quarters of 1858 - and in reply hasten to make the following explanation with the view of removing suspensions and objections taken thereto. viz. 1st qr 1858 Voucher 1. J.J. Kendricks - Special Agent $300 The policy and propriety of appointing Spcl Agents in such localities as may require their presence has been sanctioned and approved by the Department ever since the organization of the Indian Service in California. In reference to the necessity and policy of the appointment of the Spcl Agents to whose pay exceptions are taken in the examniation of the accounts of the 1, 2, & 3 quarters of 1858, it is proper to remark that the State of California is nearly one thousand miles in length with an average width of two hundred and fifty miles; nearly every thirty miles of which is inhabited by a distinct band or tribe of Indians; speaking in many instances languages different from their neighbors, and generally at war with them. Occupying every portion of the Country, from the Colorado River to the Oregon line, and from the
Coast to the Sierra Nevada Mountains - encroached upon by the Whites, and wild and hostile in their character. Constantly coming in collision, and standing in the way of the approaching settlements. Their depredations upon the Stock of the Whites as affording the means of supplying the demands of hunger was natural. Retaliation by war upon the depredators was, whether just or not, in accordance with the usages of frontier life. The encroachments of the White Settlements had deprived the Indians of their hunting grounds, their grass and their fish. The Government in its benevolence had undertaken to provide for the Indians, prevent their starvation, and save the property of its Citizens from destruction. To remove the whole number of Indians, being from sixty to seventy-five thousand to the Reservations was impracticable even if they had consented to the policy. Those however in the Mountains were decidely hostile to it. Their mixing with the Whites has engendered disease among them. Ardent spirits was sold them for the base purpose of small gain. Their condition was too deplorable to admit of adequate description. To stand idly by and make no effort to avert this condition of things would in my judgment have been criminal. These scattered remnants of tribes had no one to look to for protection, to settle disputes between them and the Whites, or give them advice in cases of trouble. In many places they could live comfortably upon their natural food, if they could be restrained from stealing stock, and protected in their rights
to gather acorns and seeds. The question then was - What ought, what can be done done --- to alleviate this condition; and afford that protection to property to which it is entitled? Upon mature examination of the subject it was decided to appoint Special Agents in such localities as their presence was deemed essential; and men whose qualifications for this service were well known in the various sections of the State were selected. A large majority of them - more than twenty in number, acted from motives of Philanthropy, and without compensation. Others, some six or seven, in the year 1858, were allowed a small compensation, in proportion to the service rendered. This policy I am glad to say has been quite successful, and very beneficial -- having been more real benefit to the Indians than the Expenditure of the same amount of money in any other way. A single Agent at a salary of $100 -- per month -- which is a [bare] support, can in many instances attend to a whole district of Country inhabited by hundreds of Indians -- settle disputes and preserve peace between them and the Whites -- protect them from the use of Ardent spirits, and in their rights to the natural products of the Earth, and save them at least, for the time being, from a lingering death or prompt extermination. I do not hesitate to say that, more good can be done by this System for a given expenditure than by any other that has been yet adopted or suggested.
In making these appointments I acted in accordance with the convictions of my
own judgment, as well as the established usage of the Department. In reference to the particular case of J.J. Kendricks I have to refer to my communication, dated April 15th 1856, addressed to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs asking the appointment of Major W.H. Harvey -- which place is now occupied by Col. Kendricks. ~~//~~
Voucher 2. J.J. Kendricks - Special Agent $200~ Explanations given above.
Voucher 3. Lyman Clark. Horse Keeping $75~ This horse was kept for the use of the Supt's [Superintendant's] Office. It was found to be cheaper to keep a horse belonging to the service in livery in San Francisco than to hire, at such times as a horse was needed for the business of the Department.
Voucher 4. E.P. Peck. Board etc. $132.50 Mr. [Geijer?] was at that time a Spec'l Agent, and was ordered at the date mentioned to San Francisco to report in regard to the condition of the Indians in the Northern part of the State, and to receive instructions for further duties. The unusual length of time that he remained here as charged in the 4th item was on account of the temporary absence of Superintendant.
Voucher 12. N. Reynolds. Wheat & Barley $67~ This grain was for crops for the Yuba Indians, on Hock Farm, under charge of