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Data Visualizations and Analysis of CIIS Student Data

Location of Outing Programs, 1884
Location of Outing Programs, 1912
Location of Outing Programs, 1917

Analysis of Visuals 1-3

The visuals of outing locations in 1884, 1912, and 1917 point to a key element in Pratt’s mission. Pratt believed the only way to transform the American Indian students, to kill the Indian and save the man, was to have complete separation from the students’ native tribes. He pulled students from tribes that were too far to consistently travel to (see analysis of sheet 7) in order to have a clean cut. He used this same thought process when choosing locations for the outings. Excluding just a few, all of the outing locations are strategically placed east of the CIIS, forcing students even further from their families and tribes.

Carlisle Student Body in 1891, Demographics by Age

Analysis of Visual 4

There was an unusually large age range present at the CIIS. The CIIS was not a place of higher education so the presence of someone as old as 22 raises some suspicion. The largest age group are the twelve-year-olds. It is not surprising that the majority of the student body lies on the younger half of the chart. Pratt’s mission was to strip away as much of the students’ identities as possible. This is easiest to do when your target is at a young age, when they have not fully formed their own identities. Children of that age are less likely to question the authority and the morality of the school’s actions.

Students Discharged from CIIS, by Nation in 1891

Analysis of Visualization 5

This graph breaks down the students who left CIIS in 1891 by tribe. Although percantages and numbers my vary from year to year, the pattern is consistent. 129 students left that year–16% of these students were Chippewa and 17% Oneida, and this was not due to a large graduating class. The graduation rate at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School was a whopping 8%. 20% of the students left due to poor health. There are many factors contributing to this high statistic such as the complete change in environment for so many of the students and few health codes. 29% of the students who left did so because they finished their time at the school, but were unable to graduate: they simply timed out and were then left to fend for themselves. It is clear from the statistics that Pratt’s school was not as successful as he had initially expected.

Location of Nations of Origin of CIIS students admitted 1891

Analysis of Visualization 6 

This map depicts the locations of each Nation the students attending the CIIS came from. Every Nation is to the west of Carlisle. Pratt was intentional and meticulous about the Nations he accepted (and took) students from. He believed that the farther away a student was from their family and tribe, the easier the process of assimilation would be, the easier “killing the Indian” would be. Due to this, students were taken from as far as Lapwai, Idaho which is located over 2,000 miles from Carlisle and only as close as Tonawanda, New York, located 310 miles from Carlisle.