The Corporation and the Indian: Tribal Sovereignty in Indian Territory, 1865–1907

The Corporation and the Indian: Tribal Sovereignty in Indian Territory, 1865–1907
Author: H. Craig Miner
Language English
Pages: 256
ISBN10: 0806122056
Genre: Uncategorized
Goodreads Rating: 3.00
ISBN13: 9780806122052
Published: March 15th 1989 by University of Oklahoma Press

In 1865, Indian tribes could not know that in just over forty years their greatest natural possession, their tribal lands, would be largely controlled by powerful contenders for their riches, American corporations.  Significant as those tangible losses were, the Indian tribes parted with an even more valuable possession, their tribal sovereignty. H. Craig Miner explains that once the large and powerful railway, livestock, coal, and oil companies realized the potential of Indian Territory, they sought to enter the area and utilize its natural resources. The tribes, plagued by a lack of unified purpose, saw their losses occur before any effective protection procedure could be established. Because many whites married to Indians and mixed-blood members of the tribes were concerned with their own financial development, their decisions were of long term benefit to the corporations. In this unique, pioneering study, Miner reinforces his argument that Indian-white coexistence through market negotiation was thought by both sides to be possible in 1865. Each side had things the other wanted, and there was no sympathy for taking Indian property by military force. Yet the history of relations between the corporation and the Indian became a history of increasing political intervention to enforce various abstract solutions to the "Indian Question.'' The Corporation and the Indian leaves the strong impression that, while the Indians might have done no better had their own stratagems in dealing with American corporations been allowed to develop more  freely,  they  hardly could have done any worse.