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The Ruby Valley Treaty of 1863

Treaty of Peace and Friendship made at Ruby Valley, in the Territoryof Nevada, this first day of October, A.D. one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, between the United States of America, represented bythe undersigned commissioners, and the Western Bands of the Shoshonee Nation of Indians, represented by their Chiefs and Principal Men and Warriors, as follows:


Peace and friendship shall be hereafter established and maintained between the Western Bands of the Shoshonee nation and the people and Government of the United States; and the said bands stipulate and agree that hostilities and all depredations upon the emigrant trains,the mail and telegraph lines, and upon the citizens of the United States within their country, shall cease.


The several routes of travel through the Shoshonee country, now or hereafter used by white men, shall be forever free, and unobstructed bythe said bands, for the use of the government of the United States, and of all emigrants and travellers under its authority and protection,without molestation or injury from them. And if depredations are at any time committed by bad men of their nation, the offenders shall beimmediately taken and delivered up to the proper officers of the United States, to be punished as their offences shall deserve; and the safetyof all travellers passing peaceably over either of said routes is hereby guarantied by said bands.

Military posts may be established by the President of the UnitedStates along said routes or elsewhere in their country; and stationhouses may be erected and occupied at such points as may be necessaryfor the comfort and convenience of travellers or for mail or telegraph companies.


The telegraph and overland stage lines having been established and operated by companies under the authority of the United States througha part of the Shoshonee country, it is expressly agreed that the same may be continued without hindrance, molestation, or injury from the people of said bands, and that their property and the lives and property of passengers in the stages and of the employes of the respective companies, shall be protected by them. And further, i tbeing understood that provision has been made by the government of theUnited States for the construction of a railway from the plains west tothe Pacific ocean, it is stipulated by the said bands that the said railway or its branches may be located, constructed, and operated, and without molestation from them, through any portion of country claimedor occupied by them.


It is further agreed by the parties hereto, that the shoshonee country may be explored and prospected for gold and silver, or otherminerals; and when mines are discovered, they may be worked, and mining and agricultural settlements formed, and ranches established whenever they may be required. Mills may be erected and timber taken for their use, as also for building and other purposes in any part ofthe country claimed by said bands.


It is understood that the boundaries of the country claimed and occupied by said bands are defined and described by them as follows:

On the north by Wong-goga-da Mountains and Shoshonee River Valley;on the west by Su-non-to-yah Mountains or Smith Creek Mountains; on the south by Wi-co-bah and the Colorado Desert; on the east byPo-ho-no-be Valley or Steptoe Valley and Great Salt Lake Valley.


The said bands agree that whenever the President of the UnitedStates shall deem it expedient for them to abandon the roaming life,which, they now lead, and become herdsmen or agriculturalists, he is hereby authorized to make such reservations for their use as he maydeem necessary within the country above described; and they do also hereby agree to remove their camps to such reservations as he mayindicate, and to reside and remain therein.


The United States, being aware of the inconvenience resulting to the Indians in consequence of the driving away and destruction of gamealong the routes travelled by white men, and by the formation of agricultural and mining settlements, are willing to fairly compensatethem for the same; therefore, and in consideration of the precedingstipulations, and of their faithful observance by the said bands, theUnited States promise and agree to pay to the said bands of the Shoshonee nation parties hereto, annually for the term of twenty years,the sum of five thousand dollars in such articles, including cattle forherding or other purposes, as the President of the United States shalldeem suitable for their wants and condition, either as hunters orherdsmen. And the said bands hereby acknowledge the reception of thesaid stipulated annuities as a full compensation and equivalent for theloss of game and the rights and privileges hereby conceded.


The said bands hereby acknowledge that they have received from said commissioners provisions and clothing amounting to five thousand dollars as presents at the conclusion of this treaty.

Done at Ruby Valley the day and year above written.

James W. Nye

James Duane Doty

Te-moak, his x mark


Kirk-weedgwa, his x mark

To-nag, his x mark

To-so-wee-so-op, his x mark

Sow-er-e-gah, his x mark

Po-on-go-sah, his x mark

Par-a-woat-ze, his x mark

Ga-ha-dier, his x mark

Ko-ro-kout-ze, his x mark

Pon-ge-mah, his x mark

Thank you for reading this very important, historic document...

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