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List of town sites on the public lands, the date of entry, and area, fc.—Continued.


July 8, 1872 ........

July 6, 1872
July 9, 1872
Huntsville.. July 12, 1872 Bear River City .. March 12, 1873... Morgan City...

.... do ... January 21, 1873... West Wichita

Kansas .. April 15, 1877

Parker City... February 23, 1876. Jewell Centre.. July 22, 1873

June 28, 1873

Medicino Lodge..
February 26, 1874 .. Elgin ...
August 20, 1873 .. Belle Plain
November 11, 1873...

Kirwin ....
November 21, 1873 .. Larned. March 22, 1873... Woodbridge

April 23, 1873.... Chinese Camp.

April 28, 1873.... Point Arena
July 10, 1873.. Windsor.
February 11, 1874 .. Springfield....
July 1, 1874 ...

Amador City ..
July 1, 1874

Sutter Creek April 10, 1873...

Taylorsville.... July 14, 1873.. Quincy ...

... do September 19, 1874. French Corral. .. August 1, 1873.... Idaho Springs.

April 16, 1877

.do January 25, 1877. Ouray ... January 2, 1880.

Silver C
July 13, 1872

June 24, 1873.

Milton ..... June 24, 1873.. Richville..

.. June 24, 1873..

Peterson ... June 24, 1873.

Enterprise. June 24, 1873..

Porterville... April 9, 1873

June 24, 1873..

May 26, 1873

do February 17, 1874 .. Richfield.... ... September 12, 1876. Bismarck ...

Dakota December 11, 1875... Osborne

Kansas January 12, 1875... McPherson .. ... April 16, 1874..... Coffeyville

.do June 4, 1873....

Concordia (2 entries)...... .do
July 12, 1877.....
December 27, 1871 North Peabody ...

... do January 13, 1875. North San Juan...

California January 13, 1872.. Sebastapol ...... .... February 3, 1875... Cherokee ... March 9, 1875..... North Bloomfield ...
November 11, 1875... San Juan Capistrano.
December 13, 1875. Vallicito .....
December 15, 1875... Murphy

do. April 25, 1876.... Phillipsburg ..

July 28, 1876
Fort Benton. ..... February 22, 1876 Weaverville ..

California September 9, 1876 Smartsville ... April 13, 1877 Bridgeport .. October 13, 1876... Camptonville January 27, 1877.. Confidence

.do October 15, 1875... Lake City ....

April 7, 1876...... Silverton ....
November 10, 1871... Heneferville

October 31. 1879.. Schellbourne

July 25, 1876

June 30, 1877..
Tybo ...

October 23, 1877

October 6, 1879
Corvallis.. ...
June 28, 1876

June 22, 1876..
Malad City ..
June 17, 1879...
Oxford ... ....
April 9, 1880..

May 12, 1877....

June 12, 1878
Anthony.. ... January 30, 1880... Stockton.. ... July 14, 1877. La Grange ...

Californi December 11, 1878.... West Point.... ... August 26, 1879 .. Goodyear's Bar ... November 5, 1879.... Sheep Ranch....

do December 5, 1877... Coulterville...... March 4, 1880 ....... Strawberry Valley.

List of town sites on the public lands, the date of entry, and area, fc.—Continued.

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The act of May 26, 1824 (see sec. 2286, R. S.), authorizes the pre-emption of quarter sections of public land, at $1.25 per acre, for the establishment of seats of justice (court-houses) in counties.

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The precious-metal bearing States and Territories of the public domain are California, Colorado, Oregon, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, Arizona, Dakota, and Washington.

Lead and copper lands in Arkansas, Missouri, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin were sold under special mining laws, the mineral being conveyed with the soil, and are included in cash entries.

Under the acts' of 1866 and 1872, and the placer act, there have been patented to June 30, 1880, 3,978 lode or vein claims, containing 38,435.11 acres, at $5 per acre, realizing $197,778, and 1,303 placer claims, containing 110,186.03 acres, at $2.50 per acre, realizing $288,767; total, 5,281 claims, containing 148,621.14 acres, and realizing $486,545.

MINERAL RESERVATIONS IN NORTHWEST TERRITORY. In the ordinance of May 20, 1785, for the disposal of lands in the “Western Territory,” it is ordered that there shall be reserved - one-third part of all gold, silver, lead, and copper mines, to be sold, or otherwise disposed of as Congress shall hereafter direct,” the deed to be given by the Commissioners of the Loan Office, with a clause of reservation in the words of the act.

The mineral resources of the country at that time were but little known. Our present Western precious metal regions, and the base-metal belt of the Mississippi, were almost entirely within the domain of France and Spain. The copper regions of Lake Superior had just come into possession of the United States by the definitive treaty of peace with Great Britain. Some gold and lead had been found in the Southern colonies-now States—but not on public domain, and economic minerals were but little known or used. The reserving clause in the ordinance of 1785 sugge.ts the reservations as to minerals, by way of royalty or sovereign dues, in some of the crown charters for colonization in America, and further shows the existing doubt as to the policy of the Government in relation to holding, leasing, or selling mines and mineral lands.


By resolution of April 16, 1800, Congress authorized the President to employ an agent to collect material information relative to the copper mines on the sonth side of Lake Superior. This contained a clause " and to ascertain whether the Indian title to such lands as might be required for the use of the United States in case they should deem it expedient to work the said mines, had been extinguished.” Thus Congress at this period seems to have had in mind the direct working and control of mines by the United States.

March 3, 1807, Congress, by section 5 of an act for the sale of certain lands now in Ohio and Indiana, provided that lead mines in Indiana, with as many contiguous sections of land to each as the President might deem necessary, should be reserved for future disposal by the United States; and

Any grant which may hereafter be inade for a tract of land containing a lead mine which has been discovered previous to the purchase of such tract from the United States shall be considered fraudulent and null; and the President of the United States shall be, and is hereby, authorized to lease any lead mine which has been or may hereafter be discovered in the Indiana Territory, for a term not exceeding tive years.

This inaugurated the policy of the United States of leasing mineral lands.

It will be noted that this reserving clause contained a proviso for reserving lands for mine easements. These reserved adjacent sections were afterwards used by the lessees for dumpage-grounds, and the timber thereupon used for smelting. The leases provided for this.

Congress, March 25, 1816, in an act relating to settlers on the public lands of the United States, provided

That in all cases where the tract of land applied for includes either a lead mine or salt spring, no permission to work the same shall be granted without the approbation of the President of the United States.

This provision of law was continued by two separate acts until March 3, 1819..

The House of Representatives, February 8, 1823, by resolution, asked for information in regard to the mining regions of the West. The President in reply transmitted such information as he at that time had (see Ex. Doc. 128, first session Eighteenth Congress). This Congressional inquiry and the reply related to lands containing base metal and iron.

By act of March 3, 1829, Congress conferred authority on the President to expose to sale as other public lands - the reserved lead mines and contiguous lands in the State of Missouri,” with this qualification, that at least six months' public notice should be given, “ with a brief description of the mineral region in Missouri and the lands to be offered for sale, showing the number and the localities of the different mines (then) known, the probability of discovering others, the quality of the ore, the facilities for working it, the further facilities, if any, for manufactures of shot, sheet lead, and paints, and the means and expense of transporting the whole to the principal markets of the United States."

February 6, 1839, the House of Representatives

Resolved, That the President be requested to cause to be prepared a plan for disposal of the public mineral lands, having reference as well to the amount of revenue to be derived from them, and their value as public property, as to the equitable claims of individuals upon them; and that he communicate to Congress all the information in the possession of the Treasury Department relative to their location, value, productiveness, and occupancy, and that he cause such further information to be collected and surveys to be made as may be necessary for this purpose.

Dr. David Dale Owen explored the Territories of Iowa and Wisconsin, by order of the President, under this resolution. (See report Dr. Owen, Ex. Doc. No. 239, First session Twenty-sixth Congress.)

In the pre-emption act September 4, 1841, section 10 provided that “No lands on which are situated any known salines or mines shall be liable to entry under and by virtue of the provisions of this act."

In United States r. Gear (3 How., 120), the Supreme Court of the United States, 1845, held that the act of June 26, 1834, did not subject lead mines to ordinary sale or preemption in certain districts thereby created.

EXECUTIVE ACTION AS TO MINES. President Polk, December 2, 1845, in his first annual message said:

The present system of managing the mineral lands of the United States is believed to be radically defective. More than a million acres of the public lands, supposed to contain lead and other minerals, have been reserved froin sale, and numerous leases upon them have been granteil to individuals upon a stipulated rent. The system of granting leases has proved to be not only unprofitable to the Government, but unsatisfactory to the citizens who liave gone upon the lands, and must, if continued, lay the foundation of much future difficulty between the Government and the lessees. According to the ofticial records, the amount of rents received by the Government for the years 1841, 1842, 1843, and 1844, was $6,354.74, while the expenses of the system during the same period, including salaries of the superintendents, agents, clerks, and incidental expenses, were $26,111.11, the income being less than one-fourth of the expense. To this pecuniary loss may be added the injury sustained by the public in consequence of the destruction of timber, and the careless and wastful manner of working the mines. The system has given rise to much litigation between the United States and individual citizens, producing irritation and excitement in the mineral region. and involving the Government in heavy additional expenditures. It is believed that similar losses and embarrassments will continue to occur while the present system of leasing these lands remains unchanged. These lands are now under the superintendence and care of the War Department, with the ordinary duties of which they have no proper or natural connection. I recommend the repeal of the present system, and that these lands be placed under the superintendence and management of the General Land Office as other public lands, and be brought into market and sold upon such terms as Congress in their wisdom may prescribe, reserving to the Government an equitable percentage of the gross amount of mineral product, and that the pre-emption principle be extended to resident miners, and settlers upon them, at the minimum price which may be established by Congress.

April 18, 1876, the Attorney-General of the United States, in an opinion respecting the mineral lands on Isle Royal, Lake Superior, held, that "salines, gold, silver, lead, and copper mines” were reserved for “future disposal of Congress.”

, CASH SALES OF MINERAL LANDS ORDERED. By act approved 11th July, 1846, Congress ordered “the reserved lead mines and contiguous lands in the States of Illinois and Arkansas and” then “ Territories of Wisconsin and Iowa" to be exposed to sale as other public lands, with the exception: that six months' notice be given, with brief description of the mineral region, as required by the act of 1829 respecting Missouri; stipulating further that such lands should not be subject to pre-emption until after public offering, and subject to private entry ; that upon proof to the register and receiver of any tract containing lead ore, and of being so worked, no bid should be received at less than $2.50 per acre, but if not sold at that price, nor entered at private sale within twelve months thereafter, to be subject to sale as other public lands. (See D. D. Owen's survey.)

By an act of 1st March, 1847, Congress ordered the organization of the Lake Superior district in the upper peninsula of Michigan, directed that a geographical examination and survey be made of those lands, and conferred authority on the President for the public sale, after six months' notice, of such land as contained “copper, lead, or other valuable ores," with description of locality of mines, &c., the minimum price at public sale to be $5 per acre, and where not thus disposed of at public auction, to be subject to private sale at that price. (See Foster and Whitney's survey.)

By the act of 3d March, 1847, the Chippewa land district in Wisconsin was organized, a geological examination and survey ordered, and the lands disposed of in like manner to those in the Lake Superior district, in Michigan.

Congress March 3, 1849, created the Department (“ Home Department") of the Interior, and thereafter the supervision of mineral lands was transferred to the General Land Office in that Department.

MINERAL LANDS IN CHARGE OF THE WAR DEPARTMENT. The acts of July 11, 1846, and March 1 and 3, 1847, made a radical change in the method of disposition of mineral lands on the public domain, abolished leases, and substituted cash sales. The act of 1849 transferred the charge of these lands from the War Department, where they had been since the ordinance of Congress of 1785, to the Department of the Interior.

August 28, 1850, the Attorney-General of the United States held that public lands containing “iron ore merely" are not the " mineral lands” referred to in the second section of the act of March 1, 1847 (act for the sale of copper, lead, or other valuable ores in Lake Superior district).

The act of 26th September, 1850, ordered the mineral lands in the Lake Superior dis

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