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Native American experience in Post-Civil War America.

Native American experience in Post-Civil War America.

Discuss the Native American experience in Post-Civil War America.

-Discuss any acts, laws, congressional measures, conflicts, and consequences that influenced, altered, and changed the Native American cultural, social, and economic heritage in Post-Civil War America.

American Perspectives (course reader):
Must use at least 4 articles related to the Native American experience in Post-Civil War America.
No additional sources can be used.
Must only have footnotes.
Please write a 2-page cohesive essay, with all ideas connecting to paint a narrow historical picture of the topics in your essay.
Please maintain a narrow time-frame to keep your focus narrow to cover only the main ideas of your topic.
All essays should have an introduction, two body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Each body paragraph must have historical examples and evidence from the course reader American.

The Union’s 1865 Civil Battle good results labeled the start of a new American purchase that introduced alteration to every area within the reunited territory. Although the former Confederacy was the focus of many Reconstruction policies, it was the American West that was truly transformed in the decades following the Civil War. The growing power of the federal government, which helped the Union end the Civil War and enact emancipation, also had long lasting consequences for the settlement of America’s western territories. With the Civil War finished, the American military apparatus, substantially larger than it had been in the antebellum period, began to move westward, quickly transforming “the Great Plains [into] the most violent place in North America.” Railroad infrastructure and federal policies like the Homestead Act (1862) helped stimulate westward migration on an unprecedented scale. Increased federal intervention in the West also slowed the transition of the region’s territories to statehood, thereby allowing “the federal state a stronger hand in western economic and political development.”

The drop of Natural American politics autonomy inside the 2nd one half of the nineteenth century was one of many results of raising countrywide expert which also irrevocably transformed the character from the American Western. With its powers invigorated by the demands of war, the federal government, having abolished slavery, turned in the post-war period to address its remaining, and largely western, racial and moral problem groups: the Mormons, the Chinese, and Native Americans. Native American populations, living at various stages of what nineteenth-century Americans called civilization, proved a particularly tricky segment of the population to integrate into the American body politic. The nineteenth century’s Indian “Problem” or “Question” took many forms; American policymakers had to determine what was to be done about hostile tribes still vigorously resisting relocation, how reservations would be managed, and how to “kill the Indian but save the man” through various civilizing projects. Preparing Native Americans for the new social and political order of the postwar United States necessitated new approaches to Indian policy, producing a massive and multifaceted Reconstruction program that forever altered Native American life and the contours of the American West.

Once the Civil Battle ended in 1865, Us citizens sent back with restored concentrate to handle the nation’s various Indian affairs, showing a dedication to american “expansion and growth handful of in antebellum American would have believed feasible.” Indian conflicts throughout the Civil Battle, this kind of the Dakota Warfare/ Uprising of 1862, and wartime atrocities like the Fine sand Creek massacre (1864) produced important humanitarian outcry and validated the demand for sizeable reform to national-Indian relationships. In March 1865, Congress tasked a joint special committee with inquiring “into the present condition of the Indian tribes, especially into the manner in which they are treated by the civil and military authorities of the United States… and examine fully the conduct of Indian agents and superintendents.” Known as the Doolittle Committee, the investigators documented a substantially declining Native population and produced an extensive list of fraud and corruption charges in their final report. Renewed warfare on the Plains and along the Bozeman Trail further supported the Doolittle Commission’s findings in favor of reform. In 1867 Congress created the United States Indian Peace Commission, designed to put the task of negotiating with Native American tribes in the hands of “civilian and military leaders with interest and competence in Indian affairs.” Chaired by the deeply religious Nathaniel G. Taylor and including General William T. Sherman, the Peace Commission recommended Native Americans be moved to separated districts where agricultural education programs and missionary support would prepare them to join white civilization. The Commission achieved peace for only a short time and with the renewal of hostilities in 1868 reformers redoubled their efforts in tackling the continuing Indian Problem.

Ulysses S. Grant’s “Peace Policy,” beginning in 1869, served as “the formal answer to the demands for reform” and put into practice the evangelical reformist traditions that had first mobilized against the moral problem of slavery. The Peace Policy aimed to solve the issue of Indian agency corruption by placing agency control in the hands of twelve different Christian denominations, among which the Methodists and Quaker Society of Friends dominated. Hoping that “humanity and kindness [might] take the place of barbarity and cruelty” in Indian affairs, the peace policy desired to relocate Indian tribes to reservations for their protection and education. Those who refused reservation life, however, would be treated with “all needed severity,” subject to punishment “for outrages according to their merits, there by teaching it is better to follow the advice of the Government.”

Grant’s peace by selection or force insurance policy took place tandem together with the demise of the treaty creating program. Based on humanitarian concerns regarding the power imbalance between the federal government and tribal leadership negotiating treaty terms, the abandonment of the treaty tradition “was part of a movement to end Indian tribal organization and make Indians wards of the government and ultimately individualized citizens.” This change in policy, however, was not the result of reformers’ efforts but the resolution of political conflict between the Senate, the governmental body with which treaty making powers reside, and the House of Representatives, which had to appropriate funds for treaties it had no power to influence. Promising to uphold treaty agreements already in place, the Indian Appropriation Act of 1871 formally ended the long-standing treaty tradition. Despite these formal changes, the practice of acquiring Native approval to formal agreements continued past 1871, although now both houses of Congress were involved in shaping the terms of such arrangements. Operating together, the end of treaty making and the prominent role Christian reformers played in Indian affairs represented considerable changes to federal Indian policy and practice, speeding along the erosion of Native American sovereignty.

Despite these new policies’ successes in chipping away Natural American tribes’ autonomy, trying to change Indians into wards in the express, the Grant administration’s peacefulness coverage demonstrated difficult to maintain. Despite the hope that church-run agencies would be far less corrupt than their predecessors, Christian denominations struggled to administer the agencies under their control, also failing to manage “practical operations within an old political system.” Missionary boards struggled to find a sufficiency of competent Christian agents and navigate the pressures of political patronage at the same time. Interdenominational rivalries, rather than concern about Native Americans’ welfare, often motivated Christians to apply for agency appointments, while mission projects abroad drained the number of missionaries willing to work stateside. By the end of Grant’s presidency (1877), church-appointed agents were declining. The failure of church leadership to solve the Indian Problem proved that the “good intentions of Christian men were not enough to correct evils of a complex nature or overcome a long history of mismanagement.” By 1882 the churches had fully retreated from their active role operating Indian agencies, marking the end of one of the central tenets of the Peace Policy.