CARLISLE OUTING STUDENT WITH PATRONS
The Outing system was one of the pet projects of Carlisle Indian School's head, Richard H. Pratt. Carlisle students were "placed in families to learn English and the customs of civilized life." The students worked, often as common laborers or maids, for $5 a month half of which was sent back to their student accounts at the school. Outing field agents kept careful track of the students, their behavior and their earnings. Carlisle records indicate that in 1903 alone, "there were 948 boys and girls placed out, and their earnings amounted to $31, 393.02."
Between 1904 and 1907 Jim Thorpe was absent from the school for 22 months on Outing assignments. Although the Indian youths were supposed to be accepted as part of the family by their patrons, that was not always the case. Thorpe's first experience was on the farm of A.E. Buckholtz in Summerdale, Pennsylvania, where he was made to scrub the floors and eat alone in the kitchen. Conditions were so bad he ran away, back to Carlisle.