LETTER ON WRONGLY REMOVED BODY - February 15, 1926
Department of the Interior
Office of Indian Affairs
February 15, 1926
TO: Mr. James Navicah
Couderay, New Post Village,
My dear Mr. Navicah,
In further response to your letter of January 22, 1926, we are now in receipt of a report from the Superintendent of the Hayward School stating that if the body of your mother Maddie Kadock, was taken up from the Catholic Cemetery at the Old Post Village it was done due to a mistake in the marking of a grave, that the grave which was opened was marked as that of George Nagiosh, and that the only indication that the grave was that of your mothers was the finding of a straw hat in the box containing the remains.
While it is not all certain that the body removed was that of your mother it is clear that there is no willful intention on the part of the Superintendent, the Reverend Ignatius Kenny in charge of the Catholic cemetery, or Mr. Thayer or Mr. Gorman, the contractors, who did the work, of ignoring you in the matter.
It is very regrettable indeed if any mistake has been made, but even if it be established beyond a doubt that the body removed is that of your mother, it is not seen under all circumstances that you are to any damages, and the most that can be said is that if you are not satisfied to accept what has been done and desire the body restored to the original grave you should so advice the Superintendent, who is being furnished a copy of this letter with instruction to see that this is done.
When the permit for the power project of the Northern States
Light & Power Company was issued, it was thought naturally that the
Indians who had relatives buried in the flowage area would not want them
to remain under water or in places more or less inaccessible by reason
of the reservoir, but would want the bodies taken up and reinterred in
some other satisfactory place. Accordingly, provisions were inserted in
the permit requiring the company to do this work, and your Superintendent
is conscientiously, devoting much of his time and attention in an effort
to see this work is done in accordance with the wishes of the Indians.
Where the relatives of any deceased Indian buried within the flowage area
do not desire the graves disturbed, the Superintendent will not knowingly
permit their wishes to be disregarded, and it is urged that you accord
him your hearty cooperation to the end that the work in this connection
maybe finished satisfactorily at the earliest practical date.
Very truly yours,
carbon to Superintendent in Hayward