Indian Orphanages

Overview

With their deep tradition of tribal and kinship ties, Native Americans had lived for centuries with little use for the concept of an unwanted child. But besieged by reservation life and boarding school acculturation, many tribes—with the encouragement of whites—came to accept the need for orphanages.

The first book to focus exclusively on this subject, Marilyn Holt's study interweaves Indian history, educational history, family history, and child welfare policy to tell the story...

See more details below
Paperback (New Edition)
$21.39
BN.com price
(Save 4%)$22.50 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (9) from $1.99   
  • New (4) from $22.26   
  • Used (5) from $1.99   
Sending request ...

Overview

With their deep tradition of tribal and kinship ties, Native Americans had lived for centuries with little use for the concept of an unwanted child. But besieged by reservation life and boarding school acculturation, many tribes—with the encouragement of whites—came to accept the need for orphanages.

The first book to focus exclusively on this subject, Marilyn Holt's study interweaves Indian history, educational history, family history, and child welfare policy to tell the story of Indian orphanages within the larger context of the orphan asylum in America. She relates the history of these orphanages and the cultural factors that produced and sustained them, shows how orphans became a part of native experience after Euro-American contact, and explores the manner in which Indian societies have addressed the issue of child dependency.

Holt examines in depth a number of orphanages from the 1850s to1940s—particularly among the "Five Civilized Tribes" in Oklahoma, as well as among the Seneca in New York and the Ojibway and Sioux in South Dakota. She shows how such factors as disease, federal policies during the Civil War, and economic depression contributed to their establishment and tells how white social workers and educational reformers helped undermine native culture by supporting such institutions. She also explains how orphanages differed from boarding schools by being either tribally supported or funded by religious groups, and how they fit into social welfare programs established by federal and state policies.

The Indian Child Welfare Act of 1978 overturned years of acculturation policy by allowing Native Americans to finally reclaim their children, and Holt helps readers to better understand the importance of that legislation in the wake of one of the more unfortunate episodes in the clash of white and Indian cultures.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Riding the wave of interest in adoption issues and Native American history, Holt (The Orphan Trains: Placing Out in America) examines the development of orphanages in a half-dozen major Native American tribes, covering the late 1800s, the Depression and the decades up to the 1978 federal reversal on Indian adoption policy. From the outset, community-oriented Indian society bewildered white missionaries and social workers, who deemed deviations from the nuclear family pernicious. Yet "orphans" didn't exist in, for instance, Shawnee culture, where tribal "grandmothers" helped raise the young, and families welcomed parentless children. Holt's balanced view of orphans' dual experience being equipped for mainstream culture and stripped of their own distinguishes her account. While most poor ethnics were subject to Americanization, Indians had it worse: many whites, bent on eliminating Native Americans, targeted orphanages, often the only available school. While many may have been awful (Holt doesn't say much about daily life), the orphanages kept kids on the reservation, unlike subsequent programs. Holt combs official reports, teasing her story out of dry numbers (enrollment stats, spending per pupil) from several orphanages. Thematic organization and further Indian perspectives (understandably scarce) would have made her book more accessible and compelling. Still, it's a useful, if turgid, volume for specialists. 19 photos not seen by PW. (Sept.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Library Journal
Holt (The Orphan Trains) carefully examines the establishment of Indian orphanages in the United States during the late 19th and early 20th centuries, a previously little-studied subject. She discusses the emergence of orphanages in tribal communities ranging from the Seneca to the Sioux and their provision of basic care, including education. In reality, those orphanages underscored the destructive interchange with Euro-American peoples. Orphanages became necessary, Holt contends, after "war, disease, starvation, relocation, removal, ill-conceived federal policies, and missionary influences" had transformed traditional networks and kinships. Many non-Indian administrators viewed orphanages as a means to ward off complete immersion in white society. All the while, the orphanages worked to acculturate Indian children into the mainstream. Beginning in the 1930s, social welfare programs, foster care, and adoptions supplanted orphanages, whose closure often resulted in children being separated from "their own people." Not until 1978, with the passage of the Indian Child Welfare Act, did Congress recognize "the transmission of Indian culture to future generations." Though the chronological makeup can be confusing and the prose occasionally leaden, this is a solid, well-researched study that scholars will appreciate. Recommended for academic libraries. R.C. Cottrell, California State Univ., Chico Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780700613632
  • Publisher: University Press of Kansas
  • Publication date: 10/28/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 338
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.76 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface

Introduction: Roots of Protest

1. Crumbling Culture

2. First Solution: Seneca

3. Orphans Among Us: Cherokee

4. After the War: Chickasaw

5. The Missionaries: Choctaw and Creek

6. Tribal Dissolution: Oklahoma

7. Catholic Outposts: Ojibway and Sioux

Epilogue: Final Transition

Notes

Bibliography

Index

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)