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Haverford College
Quaker and Special Collections

Enoch Hoag Letterbooks 1870-1878

Ms. Coll. 1104
16 volumes

Table of contents

Biographical background

Enoch Hoag (1812-1884), a member of Iowa Yearly Meeting, was appointed Superintendent of the Central Superintendency in 1869 by President Grant under Grant's "Peace Policy." This policy gave Orthodox Friends supervision of the Indians located in Kansas and the Indian Territory. The Superintendency's headquarters were at Lawrence, Kansas. Under Hoag were nine Indian Agents (also Friends) who were assigned to various Agencies. Tribes under the care of Friends included the Kickapoo, Shawnee, Potawatomi, Kansas, Osage, Quapaw, Sac and Fox, Cheyenne, Arapaho, Wichita, Kiowa, Comanche and Apache. Hoag's duties included the establishment of Indian schools, the distribution of supplies to the Indians and the payment of government annuities to the Indians. The election of President Hayes ended the essentially friendly relationship between the Quakers and the administration as it became evident that some officials distrusted the work and integrity of Friends. Hoag and his son, Edward F. Hoag spent considerable time and energy in settling Hoag's financial accounts with Washington after his resignation [see Hoag Indian Papers, Ms. Coll. 1034]. In 1879 Friends withdrew from government sponsored work and continued work on their own through the Associated Executive Committee of Friends on Indian Affairs.

[See: Kelsey, Rayner Wickersham, Friends and the Indians 1655-1917, Philadelphia: The Associated executive committee of Friends on Indian affairs, 1917.]

Using links

In order to aid navigation within this finding aid, links have been provided at the beginning of each group description: to the table of contents, collection summary and to all other groups in the collection .

Links to images

The following is the image link found in this finding aid.

Scanned Image Group 1, Letterbook #5. Letter dated 11/21/1874 from Enoch Hoag to Commissioner Smith concerning legal proceedings against the Kansas Militia and Captain Ricker for the murder of four Osages.( approximately 78K).

Summary of collection

Letterpress copies of letters. There are three groups of books:

  • Group 1 Letters to the Commissioner of Indian Affairs in Washington,
  • Group 2 Letters to the Indian Agents under the jurisdiction of Hoag.
  • Group 3 Letters characterized as "Individual letters."

The letters are signed by Enoch Hoag, Cyrus Beede (Chief clerk to Hoag) or Edward F. Hoag (Hoag's son and clerk). Much of the correspondence is of a routine nature and is concerned with the day-to-day running of the Superintendency and Agencies. There are also letters on various problems and situations that arose during Hoag's tenure, such as the murder of the Chief of the Wichitas by the Osage and the murder of four Osage by the [Kansas?] militia. With the exception of four volumes, the books are apparently completely indexed and each index includes a brief summary of the contents of each letter.

Note: These are letterpress books in which copies of letters are made by placing the original letter on a dampened tissue-like leaf of the book, the book is then placed in a press and the pressure transfers the image of the letter to the letterpress page. Because of the nature of the process, there is a great deal of variation as to the readability of individual letters.

Related collections

Additional material may be found in the Enoch Hoag Indian papers, 1865-1883 and Jonathan Richards papers, Ms. Coll. 964 of Haverford College. See also the records of the Associated Executive Committee of Friends on Indian Affairs, Ms. Coll. 1003 and Philadelphia Yearly Meeting Indian Committee records as other sources for Friends' work with Indians.

Arrangement and description of collection

The following links will link back to the Table of contents, Summary, etc. and were put before the beginning of individual groups in the descriptive part of the finding aid.

Group 1 "Commissioner's Books" | Table of contents | Summary | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3

Letters to Commissioner of Indian Affairs in Washington
1 mo. 1, 1873 - 9 mo. 26, 1875 (6 volumes)

These are copies of letters sent to the U.S. Commissioner of Indian Affairs in Washington, D.C. from the Central Superintendency headed by Enoch Hoag. During the time span of these volumes the Commissioners were Francis A. Walker (1840-1897) from 1871 to Dec. 1872 and Edward Parmalee Smith (1827-1876) from March 1873 to Dec. 1875. Most of these letters reflect the routine business of the Superintendency and its various Agencies and Agents. There are also letters discussing "non-routine" matters, such as the murder of the Chief of the Wichitas by Osages in 1873 and the murders of four Osage by militia in 1874.

  1. "Commissioner's Book. 1" 1" 1873 to 5" 2" 1873" [label on front cover]
    498 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter
    letters are to Francis A. Walker, H.R. Clum [Acting Comm.] and Edward P. Smith
    [many of these letters are blurred and difficult to read]
  2. "Commissioner's Book. No. 2. From May 9 to Sept. 8, 1873" [label on front cover]
    496 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter
    [many of these letters are blurred and difficult to read]
  3. "Commissioner's Book. From 9" 8" 1873 to 3" 13" 1874" also "Lawrence (3)" and "E. Hoag" [label on front cover]
    483 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter
  4. "Commissioner's Book. From 3" 14" 1874 to 9" 10" 1874" [label on front cover]
    499 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter
    [note on flyleaf indicates letters to the Secretary of the Interior are indexed on last sheet of index letter Y, but this page is missing (removed) and found no letters to Sec. of Interior in this volume.]
  5. "1874. Commissioner's Book. From 9 mo. 11" 74 to 2" 24" 1875" [label on front cover]
    514 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter
    [also telegram to Sec. of the Interior, Columbus Delano, 9/16/1874 asking for investigation into Osage murders]
    Scanned Image Letter dated 11/21/1874 from Enoch Hoag to Commissioner Smith concerning legal proceedings against the Kansas Militia and Captain Ricker for the murder of four Osages.( approximately 78K).
  6. "1875. Commissioner's Book: From 2" 24" 1875 to 9" 26 1875" [label on front cover]
    495 p.
    indexed by date, includes brief summary of each letter

Group 2 "Agents' Books" | Table of contents | Summary | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3

Letters to Indian Agents under jurisdiction of Hoag.
8 mo. 23, 1870 - 9 mo. 2, 1875 (4 volumes)

These are letters from the Central Superintendency to the various Agents under Hoag's jurisdiction. There are also letters to other correspondents.

  1. "No. 1. Agents Book. 8=23=70 to 5=3=72. Indexed" [label on front cover]
    498 p.
    indexed by recipient and date of letters
    letters are addressed to the following Agents and other correspondents: Brinton Darlington, Isaac T. Gibson, Agent Griffith, John Hadley, John B. Garrett, J.B. Jones, Hiram W. Jones, F. [S.] Lyon, Joel H. Morris, John D. Miles, George Mitchell, H.B. Norton, John H. Pickering, Jonathan Richards, R.L. Roberts, Agent Reinheart, Mahlon Stubbs, James Stanley, Lawrie Tatum
  2. "No. 2. Agents Book. 5-3-72 to 12-29-72. Indexed" [label on front cover]
    306 p.
    indexed [incomplete] by name of Agency and date of letters, includes brief summary of each letter
    letters are addressed to the Agents at the following: Neosho Agency (J.T. Gibson, Agent), Quapaw Agency (Herman W. Jones, Agent) and others [not listed in index]
  3. "3. 1873. Agents. 12/31-1872 to 6-24.73. Indexed" [label on front cover]
    492 p.
    indexed by name of Agency and date of letters, includes brief summary of each letter
    [note: many of these letters are blurred and very difficult to read]
    letters are addressed to the Agents at the following: Cherokee Agency, Creek Agency, Kiowa Agency, Kickapoo Agency, Kansas Agency, Neosho Agency, Quapaw Agency, Potawatomi Agency, Seminole Agency, Shawnee Agency, Sac and Fox Agency, Upper Arkansas Agency, Wichita Agency
  4. "No. 4. Agents Book from 7" 17"-1874 to 9" 2" 1875" [label on front cover]
    693 p.
    indexed by name of Agency and date of letters, includes brief summary of each letter
    letters are addressed to Agents at the following: Mexican Kickapoos (A.C. Williams), Cheyenne Agency, Kickapoo Agency, Kiowa Agency, Osage Agency, Quapaw Agency, Sac and Fox Agency (J.H. Pickering), Wichita Agency, Cherokee and other tribes, Special Agent C.F. Larabee, Pawnee Agency

Group 3 "Individual Letters" Books | Table of contents | Summary | Group 1 | Group 2 | Group 3

(Letters characterized by Hoag as "Individual letters.")
8 mo. 23, 1871 - 1 mo. 7, 1878 (6 volumes)

These letterbooks contain copies of letters from the Central Superintendency addressed to merchants, suppliers, shippers, RR companies, newspapers, government officials, military officers, individual Indians, etc. For the most part they are concerned with the day-to-day business operation of the Superintendency and the various Agencies [re: getting supplies, asking for bills, receipts and vouchers, land related problems, etc.]. Although many of the letters deal with routine items, there are other letters touching on various problems and situations with the Indians [Osage murders], etc.

  1. "No. 1. Individual Letters from 8" 23" 1871" to 12" 5" 7" 26" 1873." [label on front cover]
    882 p.
    indexed by recipient
    includes letter to U.S. Grant re: death sentence imposed on two Kiowa Chiefs for depredation and murder in Texas
  2. "No. 2. Individual Book. 5" 26" 1873. to 3" 11" 1874" [label on front cover]
    498 p.
    indexed by recipient and date, includes brief summary of each letter
  3. "No. 3. Incidental. 3-11-74 to 3-9-1875" [label on front cover]
    69[8] p.
    indexed by recipient and date, includes brief summary of each letter
  4. "No. 4. Hoag Individual Letter Book. [fro]m 3" 10" 1875 to 2" 2" 1876" [label on front cover]
    991 p.
    indexed by recipient and date, includes brief summary of each letter
    some letters relative to the Osage murders
  5. "Letterbook No. 5 1874-1876" [label on front cover]
    [actual dates 12 mo. 26, 1872 - 1 mo. 3, 1876]
    490 p.
    indexed by page no. and mostly chronological, includes brief summary of each letter, etc.
    includes: letters, reports, explanations to auditors, copies of telegrams, Jonathan Richards' reply to the editorial in the Evening Bulletin [Phila.] re: his agency, financial balances, copies of receipts and bills, statement of [Louie] Doctor Osage brave re: murder of an Osage while stealing cattle, etc.]
  6. "Letterbook no. 6 1876-1877" [label on front cover]
    [actual dates 6 mo 12, 1876 - 1 mo. 7, 1878]
    295 p.
    indexed by recipient, these are identified as "Answers to exceptions in auditors office"
    these are letters to government officials re: Edward F. Hoag's attempts to settle his father's accounts with Washington

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Contact Diana Franzusoff Peterson (dfpeters@haverford.edu or 610-896-1284) for more information about this collection. Please include the manuscript collection number in your request.

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