Letter to our community on History Colorado's report on Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School
Five years ago, under the guidance of the FLC History Committee, Fort Lewis College 开始了一段审视我们制度历史的旅程. 利用我们整个学院社区的智慧, we explored our origins as a federal Indian boarding school and the responsibility our history created for us as a Native American serving institution.
The Committee’s work led to the removal of historical descriptions on our clocktower that presented a white-washed and inaccurate depiction of the Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School, 哪个在长夜星运行, 从1892年到1909年，科罗拉多州(FLC现址以西30英里).
为了更全面地了解寄宿学校时代，FLC的领导， working directly with leaders of the Southern Ute Indian Tribe and the Ute Mountain Ute Tribe, 主张 科罗拉多州众议院法案22-1327--state legislation that tasked History Colorado with investigating traumas inflicted upon Native American children at the Federal Indian Boarding Schools in the State of Colorado. 该法案还要求历史科罗拉多州 investigate the deaths and potential burial sites of the students who perished while attending the school.
今天, 科罗拉多州公布了完整的报告. 网站上也有链接 FLC和解网站.
鉴于我们对联邦印第安寄宿学校系统的了解, 我们预料到报告的结果会令人痛苦. 尽管如此，这个结果还是难以消化，我们的心情也很沉重. However, FLC leadership believes that healing requires fully understanding the truth.
大约1,100 Native American students ages 5-22 from 20 tribes attended the Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School during its operation from 1892 to 1909. They were forcefully removed from their homes and stripped of their traditions. 报告内容包括:
Superintendents - the tenure of the superintendents of Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School. (1894-1903)——包括警司布林, who was eventually forced to end his career after a public investigation into his physical and sexual abuse of students and staff, 哪一个被广泛宣传 《十大靠谱赌博平台》 in 1903.
Living conditions - the description of living conditions and common health issues experienced by children at Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School due to underfunding and lack of proper facilities and care. Many students ran away from the boarding school and practiced other forms of resistance.
Student deaths - the archival record documented that 31 students from eight Tribal Nations died while attending the Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School.
Cemetery boundaries - remote sensing methodologies determined the boundaries and extent of the cemetery. 这个墓地最初是由美国军队建立和使用的.S. 1878年到1891年间的军队. The cemetery is located on the east side of the Old Fort Property (opposite the current buildings).
Cemetery use- the cemetery was used for student internments and by the larger community for Christian-style burials during the boarding school period. Remote sensing data indicates that after the boarding school closed in 1911 and the property was deeded to the State of Colorado, the cemetery continued to be used by the community through the mid-twentieth century and was probably most active during events such as the 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic.
埋葬——基于遥感数据, the report concludes that there are 350 to 400 burials from all eras of the cemetery and that 46 impressions could be consistent with child-sized graves. The report states the other graves are likely those of other communities living in the area. 报告没有发现重叠或乱葬岗的证据. 根据帮助起草法案的部落国家的意愿, 没有使用干扰地面的技术. Thus, we will always have lingering questions about what occurred at the Boarding School.
Research limitations - The report notes that the technology used by the researchers does not x-ray the ground, 也没有表明谁可能被埋葬在那里. 只有挖掘才能确定真正的埋葬. 研究人员还指出，由于一些档案资料的状况, the record of both student attendance and deaths at Fort Lewis Indian Boarding School is incomplete. The decisions about the next steps for the cemetery rest with the Tribal nations who had children attending the Boarding School. 我们与部落首领的对话, 到目前为止, have indicated they would like to leave the individuals who are buried there undistributed.
面对我们的历史，我们需要有意识地专注于治愈. The information in this report is upsetting for us as a community; it is particularly painful for our students and community members closely connected to this history.
我们的c校园关怀团队为我们的学生和校园社区准备了一个计划. 资源和活动可以在我们的 方法和解 页面.
此外，我们的印第安人 & 土著研究教师自愿提供他们的专业知识. 他们将提供给 与学生见面, 教师, 还有工作人员帮忙翻译, 讨论, 并于今日(十月三日)上午十一时起处理报告.m.-3 p.m. 在琼斯，105房间.
在方法, 我们的过去和现在之间的矛盾在今天是显而易见的, we are one of the most prominent educators of Native American students—with specific goals around Native American student success and relationships with Tribal Nations. We are the only higher education institution in Colorado to have two 校董会 members who are citizens of Tribal Nations, and we have made concerted efforts to increase the representation of Native American 教师 and staff in our ranks.
但我们的工作还没有完成. As 我们的董事会最近通过了一项决议， Fort Lewis College remains committed to our reconciliation work focused on improving the well-being of Indigenous students, 增强学生的归属感, 促进土著学生的成功, and upholding our responsibilities to Tribal Nations and Indigenous communities.
我们的行动改变不了过去, but they do signal that we understand our responsibility and that we are willing to take accountability for how we can help shape a better future.