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Title Diary [manuscript]: 1855-1856
Author Hatch, Edwin Aaron Clark (1825-1882)
Document Type Diary
Description From the Newberry Library Catalogue: Holograph diary kept by Hatch during the first year (June 6, 1855 - June 6, 1856) of his tenure as Office of Indian Affairs agent to the Blackfeet, Piegan, Blood, and Gros Ventres Indians at the Blackfeet Agency, Fort Benton, Montana Territory. Entries chronicle Hatch’s half-year steamer and rowboat journey up the Missouri River from St. Louis to Fort Benton; the treaty council held en route at Judith, Oct. 16-20, 1855, with commissioners Alfred Cummings and I. I. Stevens, which resulted in a treaty setting aside the Fort Belknap Reserve in Montana; and Hatch’s duties and activities at Fort Benton, Nov. 1, 1855 - Mar. 6, 1856, and at Fort Union, where Hatch spent many months awaiting the arrival of tribal annuities. Hatch mentions contacts with Indian visitors to the forts, and fur traders, frontiersmen, and Indian Service officials (Alexander Culbertson, Andrew Dawson, Malcolm Clark, James Bouche, Robert Meldrum, James Kipp, and Alfred Vaughan). Also recorded are daily Fort Benton buffalo robe counts and the explorations of naturalist and geologist F. V. Hayden, a fellow-passenger on the boats.
Names Bouche, James; Clarke, Malcolm (1817-1869); Culbertson, Alexander; Cumming, Alfred (1802-1873); Dawson, Andrew (1817-1871); Hayden, Ferdinand Vandeveer (1829-1887); Kipp, James; Meldrum, Robert (1806-1865); Stevens, Isaac Ingalls (1818-1862); Vaughan, Alfred Jefferson (1800-1871)
Places Fort Benton, Fort Belknap, Montana, Fort Union, North Dakota, St Louis, Missouri
Keywords Office of Indian Affairs, Indian Agent, agent, ship, river, treaty, reservation, land tenure, money, fort, trade, fur trade, fur trader, frontier, commissioner, exploration, buffalo
Theme American Indians and the US Government
Tribe / Nation
Culture Area Great Plains, Plateau, Great Basin
Additional Information Hatch was an Indian agent, trader, and military commander. Born in New York in 1825, Hatch emigrated to Wisconsin (possibly La Crosse), where he engaged in the Indian trade, and reached St. Paul, Minn., in 1843. A railroad agent in 1849, Hatch by 1852 was the clerk of Henry M. Rice, territorial delegate to Congress, 1853-1857. At the suggestion of Rice, Hatch was appointed the first agent of the new Blackfeet Agency, to be established at Fort Benton, Montana Territory, in 1855. Hatch returned to Minnesota in 1857, married, and held various positions. During the Civil War, the War Dept. appointed Hatch major and commander of an independent volunteer battalion charged with suppressing Sioux bands on the Minnesota frontier.
Library The Newberry Library
Copyright The Newberry Library
Collection The Edward E. Ayer Collection
Reference VAULT Ayer MS 3060
Catalogue Link The Newberry Library Catalogue