"The white men have stolen the Indian land from them. Now, not
satisfied, they would tear up the bodies of the Indian dead in order
that they may have even the last resting place of our ancestors," said
Frank Drew, one of the speakers at the conference held at the St Francis
Xavier parish hall last night to consider the removal of the remains
from the Indian Cemetery on Wisconsin Point to some cemetery in the city
The Indians were a unit in opposing the removal of the bodies from the
point, they claiming that the land on, which the cemetery is located
belongs to one Joe Leviash, a Chippewa, who has lived there for nearly
forty years. This, they assert, gives him title to the property by
virtue of adverse possession.
Another point over which the Indians were very bitter was the fact
that the $5,000 appropriated for the removal of the bodies was taken
from the tribal fund.
They consider that if the removal of the bodies was made necessary by
the construction of the steel company's terminals and docks, the steel
company should pay for the removal, and not the Indians who were
perfectly satisfied to have the remains stay where they were.
Improper activities in the campaign to secure the removal of bodies
was charged by some of the speakers who questioned whether the
government at Washington really knew anything about this matter. A
committee is to be selected to investigate the matter and report at a
meeting of the Indians on September 6th.
Indian Agent George W. Cross, in charge of the Cloquet District,
presided at the meeting.
It is possible that the Indians will employ an attorney to fight the
removal of the bodies in the courts.