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  • 2 PA Traveling Girls

Carlisle Indian Boarding School Cemetery

After reading several books and articles about this sad piece of history, we finally had a chance to visit. Can you imagine going to a school where you had to choose an English name, cut your hair, wear uniforms of American style clothes and leave your traditions behind?


Richard Henry Pratt founded the school in 1879. He believed that the only hope for Native Americans was to assimilate into the white culture. His moto was "Kill the Indian, Save the Man". Pratt persuaded tribal leaders to send their children by saying they were disadvantaged by not being able to speak or write English. Between 1879 and 1918 at least 186 children died while attending Carlisle Boarding School. I'm sure the number is much higher.


In recent years tribes have petitioned to exhume the children buried there and take them back to their home land.


If you plan on visiting the grave site, you do need to go to the guard shack and provide a driver's license for a quick background check to enter the army barracks.


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