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Bensell to Mitchell, 20 November 1878, in United States, Office of Indian Affairs, Letters Received by Office of Indian Affairs, 1824-1880, National Archives Microcopy 234, Roll 627, NADP Document D98.
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Newport, Oregon
Nov 20 1878

Hon. J. H. Mitchell
      My dear Sir & friend Yours of Nov 9, answer of Com. to certain inquires, all [illegible] the Receiver of that Office is making a good many serious mistakes. I can give you [illegible] that have been made causing parties a great loss of time besides money – will do it if you consider it worth while – its not my place to find fault, but I feel a pride and seeing our Officers do their duty and do it correctly. Harrison is complained off, by a good many, who have had business there and this case is one of many where a hardship is


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forced on a poor man, I have ordered copies of the Gazette sent to you [illegible] & Williams containing an article on the Foulweather matter. this is very important and I think you will find the survey & report very favorable indeed –. the establishment of a Harbor there would make a shipping point better than S F. I will also send articles on the alsea matter. You will have lively times in Washington. The Southern outrages I think if properly ventilated will serve to bring back those Rep's who believed the Gvmt policy abused and used to perpetuate the party in power. If not to much trouble I wish would see what is the reason the Com of Ind. Affairs has made no arrangements to give the Indians at Siletz titles to their lands. I am annoyed


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daily with this question. the Indians are urgent in their desire to obtain a piece of land they can call their own, and inasmuch as such policy is emminently just and desirable am at a loss to understand why Agent Bagley is not instructed to locate such as wish land on that Agency.
      Another thing, if the Gm really intended Indians to enjoy and receive any benefits from the Homestead Act why was the provision inserted requiring an Indian to foreswear his tribal relations and establish that fact by the use of two witnesses. dint it occur to you that it would be a great hardship for a white man to take two witnesses to the Co Clerk or land office simply to make application for land. it is not required of whites to that [illegible] in making final proof


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Senator, my experience in this matter has been great, and my opinion is an Indian cannot one time [illegible] obtain the benefits intended by this act, unless he has some white man to do all the business for him over a hundred Indians could be located on Government lands now if they knew how to go at it, but this act is to expensive and to cumbersome entirely.

With Much Respect
I am Yours &
R. A. Bensell

To Hon J. H Mitchell
U.SS.