Have informed Metis of Big Bend of Milk River you requested them to leave Indian reservation; they acknowledge your representations have helped them and that Government have been liberal; they consider American authorities have conferred a great favour on their children; their families and themselves; they have exerted themselves to pacify Sioux and Sitting Bull; most of the hunters have dispersed; if any remain it will be on account of sickness.
Colonel I have informed, according your wish, the Metis hunters of the Big Bend of Milk River, that you requested them to leave the indian reservation, as soon as possible; and without any delay which would necessitate further action from the government. Their answer is this: they thank you for having stated their condition last fall, to your superiors; they acknowledge that your representations have helped them a great deal; and that the government have been very liberal towards them, and they consider that the american authorities have confered a great favor on their children, on their families and on themselves, in allowing the Métis Hunters, to winter on Indian reservations at the Big Bend of Milk River. Having no other way to acknowledge effeciently such a favor, those métis have exerted themselves during the whole winter to pacify the Sioux; Sitting Bull himself and all his band. And I have the honor to inform you, colonel, that the most part of the Hunters who have wintered at the Big Bend, have already dispersed; some going north of the boundary line, a greater number going south of the Missouri river. Those who have not yet left the wintering place of the Big Bend, will also [leave] it, as soon as the weather will allow it; as soon as their horses will have become strong enough. I know that there are some sick people at the present time in the Big Bend; and if any one remains at that place a little later than they are expected to be there, I have no doubt, it will be on account of sickness. I have the honor to be, Colonel Your humble and obediant servant Louis Riel