Cherokee Morning Song

Thursday, August 15, 2013

History On Residential Schools. A Canadian & American Disgrace Against Humanity

There are no words to describe what feelings the sight of this picture brings out. There are NO words to ever bring out peace and understanding to anyone with a heart. This is just one photo of 100's of 1000's of graves of our children. No need to try to explain what happened to these children because most people on this page already know what went on in these so call "Christian Boarding Schools." 

Some people are quick to comment, "I didn't have anything to do with this so don't blame me" and to "just forget these kinds of atrocities ever happened and to move on". 

Now, please take a good look at this picture and if you want to leave a comment, please feel free to do so. Forget and move on? NEVER!!! It is NOT possible.....NEVER FORGET!!!!

Carlisle School, founded in Carlisle, Pennsylvania in 1879, by Captain Richard Henry Pratt~

As part of the effort to "civilize" the Native Americans and recruit them into a European way of thinking, several boarding schools were established with the aim of assimilating Indian children into the culture of the white man. The Carlisle Indian School was the first of these educational part of the assimilation process it was deemed necessary to remove the children from their parents and families, their traditional homes, and the way of life that they had followed for generations. In view of this fact, the schools were all situated away from the reservations. As many as 26 schools sprang up using the example of the Carlisle School as their inspiration. The Bureau of Indian Affairs applied more pressure in separating children fro their families.

At the Carlisle School, it was forbidden to use any language other than English, and when they first arrived children were given new English names, and also enforced haircuts. Many tribes believed that cutting the hair was a sign of mourning, and consequently the children would often weep until late into the night after this treatment...the school eventually closed its doors in 1918.....~
~Native American History~
*Historical Photograph*

Many more Indian residential school stories to be heard

By:  Ottawa Bureau reporter, Published on Sun Jul 21 2013

OTTAWA—“My name is Charles Cline.”

So begins the testimony of a teenage Cree boy who lost six toes — three on each foot — and
injured his right hand due to frost bite because he ran away one winter night after being whipped with a rubber strap by a staff member at the Norway House Indian Residential School in northern Manitoba.

It was 1907. The punishment came after Cline was discovered to have stolen some clothes from the school supplies and to have wet his bed, yet again.

Given he was such a dirty, dishonest, incorrigible boy, according to the school principal, it was not the first time he had received corporal punishment during his eight years at the boarding school.
“There was never any reason to whip me. I told lies sometimes and still lie sometimes. I am not lying now,” Cline told the preacher who came to take statements from him and his mother months after it happened.
An investigation into the incident, completed more than half a year after Cline’s feet were frozen — one of his wounds had still not healed properly — concluded that whipping was too severe a punishment for bedwetting and perhaps it would have been more in accordance with Christian values to treat the problem with medicine.
Besides, if whipping clearly was not doing anything to correct the behaviour of the boy, it would have been better to expel him instead.
The boy and his widowed mother were given, as compensation for their troubles, a bag of flour a month that winter. The case was closed.
Nothing else is known of the boy whose mother told him he was born the year the soldiers drowned in Lake Winnipeg.
His name, his story, his legacy is one of countless thousands found in thearchival documents associated with the Indian residential schools run by churches and the federal government in Canada for more than a century.
Ry Moran comes across stories like this all the time — horror upon horror described in the cold language and ledgers of government bureaucracy found in the file folders stacked on his desk.
Moran is the director of statement gathering at the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. As part of its five-year mandate, it is charged with creating a historical record of the residential school system that removed about 150,000 aboriginal kids from their homes and placed them in church-run schools, where thousands were subject to physical, mental and sexual abuse.
The Commission now has more than three million historical records from churches, the federal government and other sources in its hands.
Library and Archives Canada has estimated the relevant documents it holds could stretch for 20 kilometres and would take about $40 million and a decade to retrieve and digitize them all.
Much foot-dragging by the government, including a court battle, and disputes over what should be included delayed efforts so much the auditor general said in his spring report the entire effort was in peril.
Next year, Moran and his team will hand over the collection to the University of Manitoba, which has been tasked with setting up a national research centre on residential schools that will allow aboriginal people, researchers and Canadians at large to read the statements collected from survivors and explore the vast archives.
A budget is still being worked out, but the university hopes to build a permanent home for the collection. A director to manage the national research centre could be in place this fall.
The records collected by the commission are not yet ready to be explored — privacy concerns and a race to finish the work by a July 2014 deadline mean requests to consult them cannot be accommodated — but the thousands of documents and photographs already posted online by survivor groups,churches and Library and Archives Canada provide a sobering glimpse into what the collection will entail.
The story of Charles Cline is found — and lost again — alongside that of a nameless 3-year-old boy who was registered for boarding school years before he should have been.
Ottawa’s Department of Indian Affairs did question the school for registering such a young child, but only because school would be receiving grant money for a pupil who had not yet reached the eligible age.
There is the letter from the young man who wrote on behalf of his younger brother begging that his family — already riven by domestic violence and death — be spared from prosecution for truancy because the school felt more like a prison than a place of learning to him.
Another story concerns the children who were fed rotten fish and with Melanie Quaw, 16, whose family complained to the RCMP because she had died June 4, 1924, sometime after being beaten by Sister Marguerite at the residential school in Fraser Lake, B.C.
The police investigated by sending a telegram to the doctor, who replied that the girl had died of pulmonary tuberculosis.
“I explained the contents of this telegram to the Indians who declared themselves satisfied. The body was subsequently buried,” the officer wrote in his report, which he ended by claiming $0.70 to cover the cost of the telegrams.
There are the two boys who did get their teeth extracted by the dentist, because their cases were urgent enough to merit the limited funds the federal government provided for dental services, and the unknown many who suffered without care that year.
Then there are the many children whose names appear on four-page questionnaires sent to a federal government official, all that was required in the way of formal inquiry into the death of a pupil: Alvin Oshiw, Isaac Fisher, Marie Estelle Wolf, Maggie Fox . . .
The space for recommendations of what could be done to improve the health and safety of the rest of the children, the last question on the form, is often blank.
Sprinkled throughout are references to the high-level national policy behind the schools. Canada’s goal was summed up by Prime Minister Stephen Harper, in his 2008 national apology for the residential schools history: Our country tried for decades “to kill the Indian in the child.”
“You hope their reaction will be one of shock, disgust, sadness, regret,” Moran says as he describes what inevitably happens when one spends any amount of time sorting through what is on his desk, or what can be found already online through projects documenting the tragedies.
“It should, fundamentally, when you read these types of records in detail, force people to reconsider who we are as a country and what types of changes we’ve made, how our relationship with aboriginal people has been fundamentally soured, I think, by this residential school experience.”
Moran says the archives both complement and corroborate statements collected from living residential school survivors, ranging from a woman who was 109 years old when she talked to the commission to someone who graduated from the last residential school in 1996.
“When we talk to people, we’re getting a snapshot of a particular time, a particular era of the residential school system, and the system itself did evolve over time,” says Moran.
A prime example of documents corroborating oral testimony came to light last week when Ian Mosby, a post doctorate at the University of Guelph, shared his discovery that government bureaucrats were conducting nutritional experiments on aboriginal students in residential schools nationwide in the 1940s and ’50s.
Survivors had been sharing stories about malnourishment for years.
Moran also said the memories of students are tied to their personal experiences, with many survivors saying they did not even know there were other residential schools apart from the one where they lived.
“Ideally, when this is all tied together and it’s presented in a package, you can get a sense of the overall nature of the system: what were the students saying? What was the government saying? What where the churches saying?” says Moran.
“What’s the picture of what was really going on there?”
Manitoba Justice Murray Sinclair, who chairs the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, says one goal of all the work is to provide proof to Canadians who may not be aware of what went on in residential schools, or may not believe what they have heard.
Sinclair says the evidence will also help aboriginal people, long into the future, understand why their parents, grandparents and communities struggle the way they do.
“There will always be descendants of survivors trying to understand why their families are the way they are and why don’t know their language and why they don’t know their culture and why aboriginal people on reserves continue to function the way that they do and why so many aboriginal people leave their reserves,” Sinclair says.
“All of that is tied to the legacy of residential schools very closely and so preserving that information and that historical information is very important to us.”
If the University of Manitoba will be home to a sort of national memory, it will be very personal for Shirley Horn, 72, of the Missanabie Cree First Nation near Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.
Horn was 6 when she first entered the Shingwauk Residential School, in the building that now houses Algoma University — where she returned to earn a fine arts degree more than six decades later.
She is one of the founding members of the Children of Shingwauk Alumni Association, which held a first reunion in 1981. Former students showed up with photos and documents to share along with memories of school activities, friendships and, as it turned out, stories of abuse, often shared for the first time.
The grassroots efforts grew into a collection of archives from Ontario residential and day schools known as the Remember the Children project.
It began as a way to help survivors and their families connect with each other and achieve some healing and is now online for anyone to see, swhich Horn thinks is important.
“It is a story of our people in Canada, of what happened here,” she says. “Although that is kind of hard to deal with, it is still true and we need to help Canada accept the fact that it is part of the history of this country.”

Residential school survivors share stories of abuse, recovery

By Greg McNeil-Cape Breton Post

ESKASONI — A lonely, nighttime wait on a staircase for her father’s return that would not happen is one of the many unpleasant memories Margaret Poullette has of her residential school experience.

t was a set routine she remembered as a four-year-old shortly after arriving at the former Shubenacadie residential school many years ago.

Abuse and cultural loss were some of the other memories she shared publicly on Friday as part of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada hearings in Eskasoni.

It has been estimated that about 150,000 students suffered abuse, cultural losses and even death at residential institutions, which operated from the 1870s through the 1970s.

“I saw a lot of abuse in classrooms,” said Poullette who attended the church run boarding school for four years. “They picked on people who had darker skin.”

Punishment for a girl who spilled milk and a boy who couldn’t read because of a stutter are some of her other unfortunate memories.

“Going to the bathroom at night you’d see kids on the bowls with blankets over them because they were afraid to wet the bed.”
Some fun times came during swim outings, she recalled. But she would always wonder if her home in Whycocomagh was on the other side of the water.
“I lost my language. When I got out of there I was ashamed of being an Indian. When you watched TV you always rooted for the cowboys.”
Georgina Doucette worked on her story for three years before she could tell anyone about it.
“I got literally sick,” she said. “I was stiff and couldn’t move because there was a story inside I couldn’t bring out but once I told that story it was like someone put me in another world. It was like someone told me you’ll be OK now.”
Before she could tell the story, though, she experienced problems with alcoholism.
“I took up my own journey of healing 24 years ago when I sobered up. We started a powwow. Families all got involved. Most of them were survivors who started a revival of our culture which was really needed. I’m proud we’ve gone a long way. We’ve had  a lot to learn yet.”
Many other speakers at the commission spoke of rediscovering their self-respect through music and shared culture.
“Years later I was still ashamed until Rita Joe started writing her poems why she was proud to be an Indian,” said Poullete who would become a social worker and learn to play the drums.
When Father Robert MacNeil sat in front of the commission he talked about growing up in Reserve Mines and his experience with First Nation people as a youth.
He had fond memories of how his mother would invite visiting First Nation artisans into their home for tea and how she would be in awe of their creativity.
However, their suffering at residential schools was something he did not learn about until he was an adult.
Eskasoni Chief Leroy Denny wrote papers on the residential school experience while he was in university.
He told the commission he would like to see that part of history in the curriculum of schools.
“I hope we can pursue that so everybody knows the history of what Canada did to our young people.”
Willie Littlechild, one of three commissioners for the hearings, said help is often embedded in each emotional story he has heard.
“I find that perhaps maybe I was looking for solutions because the court order, the mandate that we have, calls on us to not only to gather the stories but to find a way forward through reconciliation,” said Littlechild, who spent 14 years in a residential school.
“In some cases we heard that the individual has been hiding that story within themselves for 45-50 years. Their families didn’t even know.”
Littlechild admitted to seeing his own story told many times in the 500 communities he’s visited as part of the hearings.
“They share with me a bit of their own healing journey and it helps me. It’s a big part of my own life that I hear. Today, that was me when I was listening to those stories.”
The challenge now, he said, is to find ways based on what they are hearing to develop better relations within the country.
“Hopefully we can translate it all in a way that the whole country appreciates the impact of the residential school legacy and that it is not just an Aboriginal problem ... it’s a Canadian story and we need to all get together.”

Admin note: These institutions were set up by the American & Canadian governments to literally turn the Indian into a white person. 

If they spoke their native language, they were beaten. Sometimes siblings were not allow to speak to each other & if they did, they were severily punished. 

Rape of both young boys & girls by priests were common. Deaths that were explained away without any proof to back up what happened was common.

Native culture was forbidden. The children were not allow to be who they were born as. They were now to become " white." This abuse against childrem who were native was carried out by christian churches and their clergy who were in charge of the schools.

This racism was one of the first and foremost reasons for these schools. The governments had spent years trying to kill the Indian through various means. 

Starvation, torture, abuse, stealing native land & giving the Native only small parcels of land which were not good for food or safety. Day & night raids by government soldiers against native villages, killing men, women & children. Many raids were carried out at night so that soldiers could easily attack the people when they were asleep & unarmed. Forbidden to hunt for food to feed their families. 

Rape, lies about what Indians were like to stir up violence against the Indian.  

Bounties were put on Natives heads as reward for anyone who brought in a native scalp from a dead Indian. ( no, Indians did not start scalping.) If was a means of proof of a dead Indian by the white governments, plus other reasons for it by other cultures. Indians have been steriotyped as being the originators & sole users of this act. NOT TRUE. Please red the writeup below on this subject.

See artical below on scalping.

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