(BSU let­ter­head)

April 3, 1979

To Who It May Concern:

The Delawares Indi­ans of Idaho, Inc. have suc­cess­fully traced their her­itage to the Chero­kee Delaware. The group of nearly two hun­dred Delawares in Idaho have a com­mon ances­try as descen­dants of Esaw Creech Killer and Lucinda Mar­shall. From the evi­dence gath­ered in sup­port of their claim it appears that these Delaware were dis­placed from their Chero­kee lands at the time of the Chero­kee Allot­ment. It also appears that these Indi­ans were denied both money and land in that allot­ment process. Such treat­ment at the hands of the Chero­kees fur­ther deprived the Lucinda Mar­shall descen­dants of their right to land in Indian Territory.

The recent his­tory of the Delaware peo­ple records one hun­dred and fifty years of retreat and still no home­land or recog­ni­tion. Accord­ing to the tra­di­tion of among the Delaware Indi­ans of Idaho, their ances­tors left Okla­homa and pro­ceeded to Billings, Mon­tana and then to Basin Wyoming. The small group emi­grated to the Boise Val­ley in 1921. Over the many years this lit­tle band of Indian peo­ple have lived fru­gal lives on the verge of poverty. This year, 1979, marks the first year in which they will have a high school grad­u­ate. Sev­eral of the mem­bers are cur­rently enrolled in an Adult Edu­ca­tion pro­gram that will lead to the G. E. D. It is hoped that as fully rec­og­nized Amer­i­can Indi­ans the Delaware youth in Idaho would qual­ify in the future for assis­tance in higher education.

The vast amount and years of care­ful research done by Mrs. Char­lotte Sim­mons and the group attests to the sin­cer­ity of their peti­tion. The Pratt Reg­istry infor­ma­tion and the Chero­kee claim papers lend sub­stance to the request. The genealog­i­cal charts give evi­dence of the com­mon ances­try. This group of Indian peo­ple has roots deep in America’s past. If as a nation we are con­cerned for human rights and dig­nity, and if we are deter­mined to right the wrongs of the past, then, it is imper­a­tive that fed­eral recog­ni­tion as Delaware Indi­ans be accorded this band of Delaware Indi­ans in Idaho.

I have read the pre­pared mate­ri­als and I attest to their valid­ity. I endorse the peti­tion that fed­eral recog­ni­tion be granted tot he Delaware Indi­ans of Idaho.

Dr. Patri­cia K. Ourada
Pro­fes­sor of His­tory
Author of The Menom­i­nee Indi­ans. Nor­man:
Uni­ver­sity of Okla­homa Press, 1979.