OK leads the country in number of old “Indian Boarding Schools”- and the Feds are looking into them

Published: 07/24/2021, 12:50 AM
Edited: 07/24/2021, 12:59 AM
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Photo Courtesy: Oklahoma Department of Libraries

(TULSA, Oklahoma) After the bodies of more than 200 children were found in a mass grave site at an old Indigenous boarding school in Canada, the United States has been charged with taking a much deeper look into itself. 

Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland told her department last month to put together a report on cemeteries or potential burial sites relating to the country’s federal boarding school program.

Officials said the Federal Indian Boarding School Initiative “will serve as an investigation about the loss of human life and the lasting consequences of residential Indian boarding schools.”

They said their main goal is to locate school sites, grave sites, and the identities and Tribal affiliations of children that were sent there. 

Hundreds of thousands of Indigenous children were taken from their families over more than a century following the Indian Civilization Act of 1819. They were then forced to assimilate to American society, stripping away their language and culture in the process, often times violently.

A final report on the investigation is due to Secretary Haaland by April 1, 2022.

The Feds have their work cut out for them in Oklahoma. According to The National Native American Boarding School Healing Coalition, Oklahoma tops the list of Indian boarding schools in the United States with 83. The following Oklahoma school sites are listed in their database:

Absentee Shawnee

Anadarko (St. Patricks)

Arapaho Manual Labor and Boarding School (Concho) 

Armstrong Academy

Asbury Manual Labor School 

Bacone College (Indian University)

Bloomfield Academy (Bloomfield Seminary; Carter Seminary; now Chickasaw Children’s Village)

Bloomfield Academy for Girls

Burney Institute (Burney Institute for Girls; Lebanon Orphan School; Chickasaw Orphan Home and Manual Labor School) 

Cantonment Indian School

Cherokee Female Seminary 

Cherokee Indian Orphan School 

Cherokee Male Seminary

Cheyenne Manual Labor and Boarding School

Chickasaw Manual Labor Academy for Boys

Chickasaw Orphan Home and Manual Labor School

Chilocco Indian Agricultural School

Chuala Female Seminary

Collins (Colbert) Institute

Coweta Mission (Koweta Boarding School) 

Darlington Mennonite Mission 

Dwight Mission

Edwards University

El Meta Bond College

Emahaka Mission School for Girls 

Euchee (Yuchi) 

Eufaula Boarding School for Girls (National High School at Eufaula; now Eufaula Dormitory)*

Folsom Training School 

Fort Coffee Academy for Boys 

Fort Sill Indian School 

Goodland Academy (Old Goodland Indian Orphanage)

Harrell International Institute (Spaulding Female College) 

Henry Kendall College (Presbyterian School for Indian Girls; Minerva Home; now the University of Tulsa) 

Hillside Mission

Hominy Creek (St. John’s) 

Iowa Mission

Jones Academy/Jones Male Academy

Mekasukey Academy

Murray School of Agriculture (Murray State College)

Murrow Indian Orphanage

Nazareth (College) Institute 

Norwalk Academy for Boys

Nuyaka Mission 

Nuyaka School and Orphanage 

Oak Hill Industrial Academy (Alice Lee Elliott Memorial Academy) 

Oak Ridge Manual Labor School 

Oklahoma Presbyterian College for Women (Calvin Institute/Durant Presbyterian College)

Osage Boarding School 

Otoe

Pawnee Boarding and Training School 

Pawnee Industrial Boarding School 

Pecan Creek Mission 

Ponca Indian School 

Quapaw

Rainy Mountain 

Red Moon 

Riverside Indian School

Sac & Fox Indian School 

Sasakwa Female Academy

Seger Industrial School

Seneca Boarding School 

Sequoyah High School (now Sequoyah Schools)

Shawnee

Spencer Academy 

St. Agnes 

St. Agnes Academy 

St. Benedict’s Industrial School (Sacred Heart Institute) 

St. Elizabeth School 

St. John’s School 

St. Joseph’s School

St. Louis School 

St. Mary’s

St. Mary’s Academy for Girls

St. Mary’s School

Sulphur Springs School 

Tullahassee Manual Labor Boarding School

Tuskahoma (Tushkahomma) Institute/Choctaw Female Academy

Wapanucka Academy for Girls (Allen’s Academy/ Chickasaw Rock Academy/ Wapanucka Institute) 

Wealaka Mission (replaced Tullahassee) 

Wetumka Mission (Levering) 

Wewoka Mission Boarding School for Girls 

Wheelock Academy (Wheelock Mission and Wheelock Female Seminaries) 

Yellow Springs School 

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