Indian Industries League

Indian Industries League – A philanthropic organization, originally the Indian industries department of the National Indian Association, but incorporated as an independent body at Boston, Mass., in 1901. Its object is “to open individual opportunities of work, or of education to be used for self-support, to individual Indians, and to build up self-supporting industries in Indian communities.” As a department of the national organization the Indian industries gained its first important impetus in 1892, when it held at the Mechanics Fair, in Boston, an exhibition of Indian bead work and of class-room work in iron, tin, wood, leather, and lace. It has been instrumental in the education of two Indian girls, who were “graduated with credit from the Boston High School, and has helped individual educated Indians to ward self-support, having in view the fact that the progress of the Indians toward civilization is in proportion to the number of their young people who have seen and practised the white man s life at its best. It has also helped to foster a bead work industry; aided in developing the native moccasin to suit the white man; bought baskets of native manufacture, paying there for a fair price to the Pima and Mission Indians, the basket making tribes of Washington, and others, and has obtained for these products places for exhibit and sale. The league also erected an industrial room for the Navaho on San Juan r., N Mex., which was disposed of when the plant became a mission station. In 1905 the president of the league officially visited the Mission Indians of California and others, his report on the former resulting in the amelioration of their extreme poverty by bringing te them governmental and private aid. The league strives to aid the Indians in any way that offers even temporary self-support, like that derived from their aboriginal industries. It believes in the assimilation of the Indians into the national life, in the abolishment of reservations, and in the freedom of the Indians to live and work where they please. (F. C. S.)

Hodge, Frederick Webb, Compiler. The Handbook of American Indians North of Mexico. Bureau of American Ethnology, Government Printing Office. 1906.

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