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Executive Order—Evaluation and Indian Relocation of Bitter Root Valley Reserve

November 14, 1871

Executive Mansion, November 14, 1871.

The Bitter Root Valley, above the Loo-lo fork, in the Territory of Montana, having been carefully surveyed and examined in accordance with the eleventh article of the treaty of July 16, 1855, concluded at Hell Gate, in the Bitter Root Valley between the United States and the Flathead, Kootenay, and Upper Pend d'Oreilles Indians, which was ratified by the Senate, March 8,1859, has proved, in the judgment of the President, not to be better adapted to the wants of the Flathead tribe than the general reservation provided for in said treaty: it is therefore deemed unnecessary to set apart any portion of said Bitter Root Valley as a separate reservation for Indians referred to in said treaty. It is therefore ordered and directed that all Indians residing in said Bitter Root Valley.be removed as soon as practicable to the reservation provided for in the second article of said treaty, and that a just and impartial appraisement be made of any substantial improvements made by said Indians upon any lands of the Bitter Root Valley, such as fields inclosed and cultivated, and houses erected; that such appraisement shall distinguish between improvements made before the date of said treaty and such as have been subsequently made. 

It is further ordered that, after the removal herein directed shall have been made, the Bitter Root Valley aforesaid shall be open to settlement. 

It is further ordered that if any of said Indians residing in the Bitter Root Valley desire to become citizens and reside upon the lands which they now occupy, not exceeding in quantity what is allowed under the homestead and pre-emption laws to all citizens, such persons shall be permitted to remain in said valley, upon making known to the superintendent of Indian affairs for Montana Territory, by the 1st day of January, 1873, their intention to comply with these conditions. 

U. S. Grant.

SOURCE: Kappler, Indian Affairs, Laws and Treaties, US GPO, 1904, p 854-855

Ulysses S. Grant, Executive Order—Evaluation and Indian Relocation of Bitter Root Valley Reserve Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/371197

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