By Roberta Ulrich
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Extra resources for American Indian Nations from Termination to Restoration, 1953-2006
Those functions were handled by bia personnel, few of whom were Indians and even fewer were Menominees. ” However, few tribal members had the educational background to assume management of a large business such as the forest and mill. Of 1,226 adult tribal members polled, 889 had ﬁnished the eighth grade, 328 had graduated from high school, and 9 had ﬁnished college. 14 Nor was the tribe organized for effective self-government. Most decisions were made by the General Council, composed of all adult tribal members.
The tribe has demonstrated . . it should be relieved from wardship,” Byrnes said. ” Byrnes was at least equally concerned about the fate of the Menominee forest, which he described as big business, an important aspect for the general economy of Wisconsin. ” Then Byrnes said the obvious, which others ignored: “This is in a sense a pilot operation. ”35 There were many problems getting the experiment started. The ﬁrst misstep was the failure of both the bia and the Congress to let Wisconsin state ofﬁcials know that the Menominee people and 34 Breaking the Ties property were about to be dumped into state jurisdiction.
The hearing on the resolution had consisted almost entirely of testimony from tribes seeking to be omitted from the termination list. 32 With passage of hcr 108 Watkins became the dominant ﬁgure in the termination drive. A Mormon attorney, sometime ranch manager, newspaper editor, and organizer of water districts, Watkins was considered a moderate Republican when he entered the Senate. Historian R. Warren Metcalf describes Watkins in Termination’s Legacy: The Discarded Indians of Utah as a man whose beliefs were ﬁrmly grounded in the Mormon Church and the Republican Party.