From Very Good to Tragic: What the Mormons Did for Native Children
Editor’s note: This is the final in a three-part series about the Indian Student Placement Program, a foster-care and education program for Native youths administered by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints between 1947 and 2000.
Bennett Jackson clutched a five-dollar bill in one hand and a tortilla stuffed with Spam and potatoes in the other.
At 8, he was the youngest passenger on a bus from Flagstaff, Arizona, to Encinitas, California. The money was the last of his mother’s savings.
“That’s how I knew things were bad,” says Jackson, now 42. “My mom gave me her last five dollars when she said goodbye.”