The choice of Columbus Day for the opening of the founding conference of the Indian reformers, October 12, 1911, was to be a new beginning for American Indians. ", In 1923, the organization met in Chicago. The Society was born of hope, rather than despair. Washington, D.C. was selected as the headquarters, the executive committee was directed to watch legislation affecting Indian affairs and for the welfare of Indians to the best of their ability. The Congress dealt with long-familiar subjects, legal aid, legislative action, education and establishing a publication. By 1907 statehood, Peyotism's spread to the majority of Oklahoma tribes had been greatly facilitated by established patterns of intertribal visiting and intermarriage. In 1909, after the formation of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, McKenzie sensed the time was ripe for a national organization of "educated and progressive Indians" and corresponded with Coolidge and Eastman calling for an Indian-led national conference on Indian affairs. It was at the forefront of the fight for Indian citizenship and opening the U.S. Court of Claims to all tribes and bands in United States. In response, the President issued a proclamation on September 28, 1915, which declared the second Saturday of each May as American Indian Day. Hertzberg, pp. 199–202.  The invitation to meet in that city was issued by Carlos Montezuma, but by the time it was necessary to begin planning, Montezuma was mortally ill and decided to go back to the reservation to die. , McKenzie planned a symbolic event with national press coverage and worked with Arthur C. Parker to recruit speakers, design the conference program and secure endorsements from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, City of Columbus, Ohio State University and several local civic and religious organizations. Many had attended the Carlisle Indian School or Haskell Institute and were college graduates. Fifth.  In December 1914, the Society met in Washington, D.C. and received a first-class reception from the federal government. The Society of American Indians (1911–1923) was the first national American Indian rights organization run by and for American Indians. The American Indian magazine. Deloria has a familial connection to the Society since his great-grandfather, also named Philip J. Deloria, was present at the 1911 conference. The American Indian Quarterly. He and his wife left Chicago shortly thereafter for the Fort McDowell Yavapai Reservation in Arizona, where he died on January 31, 1923, in a primitive hut on the reservation. During the conference, a contentious discussion grew out of the perceived influence of the Bureau of Indian Affairs within the Society. Although controversial among Society leaders, many of them viewed such exhibitions as a way to educate curious and interested whites about Indians' rich culture and heritage. The Native American Church combined Indian and Christian elements, and was popular among the best-educated and most acculturated men among the Winnebago, Omaha and other tribes.  The 1918 and the 1934 charters had the same incorporators, evidencing a continuity of Carlisle alumni leadership in Pan-Indianism. Arthur C. Parker, who used both his "American" and his Seneca name "Ga-wa-so-wa-neh", wrote a pamphlet on American Indian Masonry, published in 1919 by the Buffalo Consistory.  From 1916 to 1922, Carlos Montezuma published his own monthly newsletter, Wassaja, for the "radical" reformist viewpoint.  Keynote addresses were delivered prominent American Indian scholars Philip J. Deloria (University of Michigan), K. Tsianina Lomawaima (University of Arizona) and Robert Warrior (University of Illinois)  In keeping with the tradition of the Society's first national meeting, the symposium included a trip to the Newark Earthworks in Newark and Heath, Ohio. "Ohio, Rich In Indian Legend, Wants Indian Convention". Commissioner Cato Sells welcomed them to the nation's capital where they toured the Bureau of Indian Affairs, and visited the White House to meet with President Woodrow Wilson. The public was much more interested in the exotic Indian past than the reality of the Indian present. Most Society annual conferences included Indian entertainment for the public, which largely consisted of stereotypical depictions of Indians in tribal costume engaging in war dances and rituals. Hertzberg, p. 283. v. 7: no. The American Indian Defense Association became a powerful new lobby in Washington and successfully challenged government confiscation of communal Indian lands and restriction of religious freedom, and the Bursum Bill was defeated and the Dance Order withdrawn. Each Pueblo owned lands communally and unconditionally under grants from the King of Spain later confirmed by the United States Congress. Deloria has authored books on American Indian customs, culture, experiences, and history. After the United States government took over Missouri, White Cloud accepted the U.S. officials as leaders and did his best to follow their laws and advice. McKenzie's organizational principles were to ensure harmony and unity within the Society, work cooperatively with the white establishment and uphold standards of quality and achievement for Indians. When it became a state in 1821, Missouri had a Native American population estimated at around 20,000. This venture is therefore more or less an experiment based upon the faith of the Society in its own integrity and the essential pride of the race in its position as the native race of America. " Impressed with the historical significance of the April meeting, Ohio State President William Oxley Thompson, Columbus Mayor George Sidney Marshall, as well as by the President of the Chamber of Commerce, the President of the Ministerial Association, the Secretary of the YMCA, the Secretary of the State Historical and Archaeological Society, and the President of the Columbus Federation of Labor invited the new American Indian Association to hold their first national conference in Columbus, on Columbus Day, October, 1911. Seventh. No one was forced to go to war - individual warriors.  The Society letterhead made clear the status of Indians and non-Indians, "Memberships: active and associate: persons of Indian blood only."  The Society pioneered twentieth century Pan-Indianism, the movement promoting unity among American Indians regardless of tribal affiliation. , On June 21 and 22, 1911, the Temporary Executive Committee met at the home of Laura Cornelius Kellogg in Seymour, Wisconsin, attended by prominent Oneida attorneys Chester Poe Cornelius and Dennison Wheelock.  Associate membership had grown to over 400, including men women from the American Indian Defense Association, missionaries, businessman, anthropologists and other academics.
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