found an inhospitable environment and little prepared for them in the Uintah Basin. Throughout the 1870s these Uintah Utes continued to hunt
and gather in the surrounding country while agents cultivated fields
in an effort to convince them to settle down. Things became more difficult
in 1881 when the federal government forcibly removed the Yamparka and
Parianuc (White River) Utes from Colorado to the Uintah Reservation.
The following year the government moved the peaceful Taviwac (Uncompahgre)
Utes to the adjoining two-million-acre Ouray Reservation.
and consolidation on the Uintah-Ouray Reservation generated a number
of problems for and between the Uintah, White River and Uncompahgre
bands. Suspicion and jealousy over land and money, diminished opportunities
to travel and hunt, and attitudes towards farming divided the bands.
These problems were compounded in 1897 and again in 1905 when the government
allotted the reservations and opened the remainder for white entry.
Each Ute received an 80 to 160 acre plot for farming and access to a
communal grazing district. In the end, allotment reduced Ute land holdings
by over 85 percent. The construction of expensive irrigation projects
did little to improve Ute farming and led to extensive leasing and the
alienation of yet more land. Allotment ultimately limited the potential
for a successful livestock industry. Short-term resistance to allotment
and directed change included the Ute outbreak of 1906-08, during which
nearly 400 Utes fled to South Dakota. Longer-term resistance included
adoption of the Sun Dance religion and Peyotism--attempts to bind the
people together and maintain an Indian identity.