ePub 版

3514 Cong....1st Sess.

Report of the Secretary of the Treasury.


of bullion choose to export it in the form of fine be employed to make the experiments and anal- care and energy which have been displayed so bars, they should be at liberty to exercise that yses. Conclusive evidence has already been far in the construction of this steamer, justify the option; but they should not be allowed a pre- received that a decided difference in the suscepti- || opinion that, when completed, it will be a vessel mium of one half per cent. upon such as is with-bility of different irons to oxydize does exist, and that will do credit to the service. The whole drawn for exportation, which is the effect of im- it is hoped that the proposed analyses will dis- | expense of building and equipping the steamer posing that duty on that bullion which is coined, cover the cause. However, should the experi- || will be within the appropriation made by Conand exempting, as is done by the section of the ments fail in this respect, they will at least show gress. act of March 3, 1853, referred w, that which is the localities from which the least oxydizable iron The report of the engineer in charge of the withdrawn in the form of fine bars. I accord- can be procured. Some idea may be formed of Bureau of Construction is herewith submitted, ingly recommend that the original provision of the importance of being able to discriminate be- || marked 12. It will give a detailed statement of the sixth section of the act of February 21, 1853, tween irons as to their susceptibility to oxydize, the expenditures in that branch of the public serbe restored.

from the fact that the quantiiy used by the Gov- || vice. There are interesting facts set forth in this By the act of March 3, 1857, amendatory of ernment, in this Department alone, since January, | report, which should not fail to attract the atten"An act to provide for the better organization of 1852, exceeds forty million pounds; and the Navy | tion of Congress. By reference to the tables acthe Treasury, and for the collection, safe-keep- and War Departments may each safely be put companying the report, the number of public ing, transfer, and disbursement of the public rev- down for equal amounts. The use of iron capa- | buildings erected prior to 1850, and their cost, enue,” it was provided “that each and every ble of resisting oxygen, for rigging, anchors, will be shown; also the number authorized to be disbursing officer or agent of the United States, chain-plates, sheathing, &c., in our commercial | erected since that time, as well as the propositions having any money of the United States intrusted | marine, would be immense.

which have been urged upon Congress for the still to him for disbursement, shall be, and he is In accordance with the authority vested in the further enlargement of the system. In view of hereby, required to deposit the same with the Secretary of the Treasury, by the joint resolu- || these facts, it is submitted that Congress should Treasurer of the United States, or with some one tion approved February 26, 1857, to provide for either return to the practice of the Government of the assistant treasurers or public depositaries, || ascertaining the relative value of the coinage of prior to 1850, or else adopt a system that would and draw for the same only in favor of the per- the United States and Great Britain, and fixing do justice to the different sections of the country. sons to whom payment is to be made in pursu- the relative value of the unitary coins of the two If these public buildings are to be erected to the ance of law and instructions, except when pay- countries, I appointed Professor J. H. Alexan- extent indicated by the legislation of the last few ments are to be made in sums under twenty dol- der, of Baltimore, commissioner to confer with years, not only justice to the different sections of lars, in which cases such disbursing agent may the proper functionaries in Great Britain in re- the country, bui economy and the public interest check in his own name, stating that it is to pay lation to some plan or plans of so mutually ar- require that they should be subjected to a system small claims."

ranging, on the decimal basis, the coinage of the which will guard the public interest against the The object of this provision of law was to pro- two countries, as that the respective units shall unwise expenditures likely to be incurred from tect the Government from the improper use of the hereafter be easily and exactly commensurable. the present mode of legislating on the subject. public funds in the hands of disbursing officers. | Professor Alexander is now in London, and I No public building should be authorized until an It was the desire of the Department to carry it expect the result of his mission will be embodied official report has been made to Congress showing out to the fullest extent that it could be done. An in a statement and report from him at an early the necessity for its erection, and its cost. enforcement of its provisions according to its letter day, which will be laid before Congress as soon The suggestions made in the report of the enwas impracticable. It would have required a con- as received.

gineer, on the propriety of systematizing this siderable increase of the clerical force of different The joint resolution to prevent the counter- class of business, are commended to the considoffices, for which no provision had been made by || feiting the coins of the United States, approved eration of Congress. Before, however, adopting Congress, and in some of the Departments a com- February 26, 1857, empowered the Secretary of the late legislation on this subject as the fixed pliance with its requirements was impossible. the Treasury to cause inquiry to be made, by policy of the Government, it would be well to Payments by the disbursing officers of the Army two competent commissioners, into processes consider the expense which such a system will and Navy, as well as payments by a portion of and means claimed to have been discovered by | permanently entail upon the Treasury. The such officers in the Interior Department, could J. T. Barclay, Esq., for preventing the abrasion, number of custom-houses, court-houses, and post not be made in the mode pointed out. Pursers counterfeiting, and deterioration of the coins of offices which would be called for can hardly be in the Navy, settling with the officers and crew the United States. Under said authority, I ap- computed with accuracy; but our general informof a vessel in foreign ports; paymasters in the pointed Professor Henry Vethake and 'R. E. ation on the subject is sufficient to justify the Army, at remote points from any public depos- Rogers, of Pennsylvania, and directed every opinion that it would be attended with an expense itory; disbursing agents, charged with the pay- i facility to be afforded them at the Mint, in which would never be compensated for in any ment of Indian annuities, could not discharge Philadelphia, to pursue their investigations. 1 advantages to the public service. My own opinion their duties if a literal compliance with this law anticipate, at an early day, to communicate the is decidedly against the system; but if Congress had been required. Regarding the object of the results of the said inquiry to Congress, with my adopts it, I am desirous of placing it upon the law as wise and proper, and feeling" bound to opinion as to the probable value of the alleged most just and economical principles. enforce it to the utmost extent of my power, I discoveries.

Among the tables accompanying this report, I caused circulars Nos. 2 and 3, appended to this In the settlement of the accounts of the Clerk especially call the attention of Congress io No. report, to be issued to the various public depos- | of the House of Representatives by the account- 13, giving a detailed account of the expenditures įtaries and disbursing agents of this Department, ing officers of the Treasury, a question arose as and receipts of the marine hospital fund for the by which it will be seen that the object of the to the power of the two Houses of Congress over relief of sick and disabled seamen in the ports of

the United States for the fiscal year ending June scribed, as far as it was possible to engode polent their respective contingent funds. Under resolu

tions passed by the House of Representatives, 30, 1857. believed that the regulations thus adopted will the Clerk had paid certain sums to different em- The relief afforded at the hospitals belonging effectually secure the object which Congress had ployés of the House for extra services rendered to and under the charge of the Government is no in view in the passage of the act of March 3, | by them, and the question was presented to me greater than at other points, whilst the expense 1857, and I would recommend that the law be só whether he could be allowed credit for such pay- is much larger. This is attributable, in a great amended as to conform to these regulations. At ments in view of the provisions of the act of measure, to the unwise location of some of the all events, some legislation is absolutely neces- March 3, 1845, which was evidently intended to hospitals, though there are, doubtless, other sary on the subject, and I would ask the early prevent the application of the contingent fund of causes which contribute to that result. The attention of Congress to it.

ihe two Houses to such purposes. My opinion propriety of dispensing with these public hosThe sum of $2,500 was appropriated at the last was, that the act of March 3, 1845, was still in | pitals, and returning to the system which still session of Congress “to enable the Secretary of force in this respect, and I accordingly held that exists at most of our ports for the disbursement the Treasury to cause such experiments and anal- the credits could not be allowed. The reasons of the marine hospital fund, is commended to the yses of different beds of ore as to test whether any for that opinion are so fully stated in my letter of favorable consideration of Congress. of such ores, in their native state, possess alloy's June 30, 1857, to the First Auditor of the Treas- Having called on the President of the Louisthat will resist the tendency to oxydize to a greater | ury-a copy of which accompanies this report, ville and Portland Canal Company for a report extent than others, and to ascertain under what marked 11-that it is unnecessary again to discuss of its condition, I herewith transmit the response circumstances they are found, and where, in order the question. In conformity to the suggestions of that officer, marked 14, from which Congress to facilitate the proper selections of iron for public of that letter, and for the reasons therein given, can decide whether further legislation on that works.To carry out the object in view, I caused I recommend the passage of a law for the relief subject is advisable. circulars to be sent to all iron-masters whose names of the parties who have acted under the different The report of the Superintendent of the Coast could be ascertained, soliciting specimens of ore construction placed upon the law by this Depart- Survey will be submitted to Congress at an early and iron, and calling for information pertinent to

day. It will give a statement of the operations the subject; and, in compliance with the request, By the act of February 5, 1857, the President of ihat branch of the public service, showing the already a large number of specimens have been was authorized “to procure, by purchase or progress which has been made in it during the mens are accompanied by letters manifesting great ter,” and for that purpose the sum of $150,000 itures of this service has been made consistent interest in the result, and communicating much was appropriated. Under this authority propo- with its prosecution on the present scale. valuable information in relation to the production sals were invited for the building of such a ves- The reports of the First, Second, Third, Fourth, of iron, which has become one of the great national sel, and the contract awarded to Mr. William H. Fifth, and Sixth Auditors, and of the First and industrial interests. So soon as the specimens are Webb, of New York. He is progressing rapidly Second Comptrollers, the Commissioner of Cusall received and arranged, and the information with the work, and it is believed that the vessel toms, and those of the Treasurer, Solicitor, and which accompanies them has been abstracted and will be ready for service by the 1st of February, Register of the Treasury, (marked from A to L. collated, a competent chemist or metallurgist will 1858. The character of the contractor, and the inclusive,) are herewitli submitted. They give 35th Cong....lst Sess.


Report of the Secretary of the Interior.

SENATE & Ho. of Reps.

a detailed account of the business transacted in the colonial laws of their different sovereignties. surveys, since the beginning of the operations in their respective offices.

And there is no branch of jurisprudence where Utah, exhibits a sphere of field work embracing The report of the supervising inspectors, marked greater research and extent of legal erudition | 2,000,000 acres. 15, will be found among the documents accom- have been displayed by our judicial tribunals, A due regard for the public interests, as well as panying this report, and gives the operations of than in the determination of the intricate questions a proper respect for the prosperity and advancethe law under which they are appointed for the which have arisen, been discussed, and judicially ment of New Mexico, would justify, if not loudly past year.

determined in connection with this branch of the call upon Congress to establish a land office and The operations of the Light-House Board, with service. These foreign claims are of every diver- a board of commissioners for the adjudication of the condition of the works under their charge, will sity of shape, and everywhere scattered over the Spanish and Mexican claims in that Territory. be found in the report from that body, No. 16. public domain, interrupting the regularity of our It is important to its future prosperity promptly

A disposition on the part of the board to cur- surveys, with which they are necessarily inter- to separate private property from the public lands, tail a system which has been extended beyond locked, and exhibit in striking contrast the irrego | before the settlements become dense, and consethe wants of commerce, should recommend it to ularities of the foreign surveys, when compared quent conflicts of claimi and title arise. the favorable consideration of Congress.

with the simplicity and beauty of our own rec- By the act of April 24, 1820, the old credit sys. The duties devolving upon those having charge || tangular system; showing the difference in the tem of sales of land was abolished, the cash sysof this branch of the public service have been per- | modes of distributing estates, one of which con- tem instituted, and the minimum price fixed at formed with satisfaction and ability.

cedes to the favorites of princes immense bodies $1 25 per acre. This is the great basis of our All which is respectfully submitted.

of the choicest lands, whilst the other subdivides present system of sales. The policy of the law HOWELL COBB, the public territory, so as to deal with every is to favor the actual settler. It is a humane, wise,

Secretary of the Treasury. citizen in a spirit of enlarged liberality. In the and just policy. When the hardy pioneer breaks Hon. JOHN C. BRECKINRIDGE,

growth of our immense territory, in the way and off from the comforts and security of a long setVice President of the United States,

by the means already mentioned, there remained tled community, and encounters the hazard and and President of the Senate. and still remain unextinguished, the claims, endures the hardships and deprivations of a new

rights, and possession of the aborigines. The settlement in the forest, he has rendered a posiReport of the Secretary of the Intorior.

General Government of the Union, at the dawn | tive service to the Government; and to deny him of our political existence, adopted the principle the right of securing his home and improvements,

asserted by the colonizing Governments of Eu- in preference to all others who would profit by DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,

rope, to the effect that the absolute title was in the his sacrifices, would be a crying injustice. December 3, 1857.

United States, subject only to the Indian right of When an actual settler goes upon lands which Sır: In presenting an exhibit of the operations occupancy, and with the unconditional privilege have been offered for sale, and builds himself a of this Department, attention is first invited to the of extinguishing that right.

house, the law allows him twelve months within important and diversified interests connected with Under the operation of these principles, the which to pay for a preemption right of one hun. the administration of our public domain, respect- | purchase and extinguishment of the Indian right dred and sixty acres., If he enters upon unoffered ing which the accompanying report of the Com- has been gradually progressing in the ratio in land, op lands which have never been surveyed, missioner of the General Land Office furnishes which lands in Indian occupancy were demanded he is permitted to file his declaration of intention interesting details, with a gratifying view of our by our people for settlement. Pari passu have to enter, and is not required to pay for his preextended land system. American legislation has the lines of the public surveys been carried, in emption till the day appointed by proclamation shown its superior practical wisdom by its sim- preparing the way for homesteads, and the means for public sale of the lands. Public policy may plicity and adaptation to the wants of our people || by which to pass to our people unincumbered and cause an indefinite postponement of the sale of in its code of land laws, in regard to the improve- || indefeasable titles.

the land, and the consequence is, that with this ment of which few suggestions can be made. The surveying system is now organized into | inchoate, imperfect righi, he continues to occupy

The leading fact attracting our attention is the || twelve different districts, and the lines of the pub- without perfecting his title. This privilege to vast extent of the operations of the land bureau.lic surveys have already been extended over more enter being a personal right, its transfer or as

The public domain covers a surface, exclusive | than one fourth of the whole surface of the pub- 1 signment is prohibited by law. of water, of 1,450,000,000 of acres. It stretches lic domain. That surface, as heretofore stated, By thus conceding privilege, and fixing no across the continent, and embraces every variety is 1,450,000,000 acres. Of this, there have been time in which he is required to perfect his title, of climate and soil, abounding in agricultural, surveyed and prepared for market, of net public an interest is created in opposition to a public mineral, and timber wealth, everywhere inviting | lands, that is, exclusive of school lands, &c., | sale by proclamation, when the good of the to enterprise, and capable of yielding support to 401,604,988 acres, of which quantity 57,442,870 country may require it. The suggestion, there

acres have never been offered, and are, conse- fore, that settlers upon unoffered lands should be This great inheritance was acquired, first by quently, now liable to public sale; in addition to required to make their proof and payment withthe voluntary cessions of several of the original | which, there were upwards of 80,000,000 acres in a specified period, is approved. thirteen States; then by the Louisiana purchase subject to entry at private sale on the 30th Sep- Preemptions upon unsurveyed lands are now obtained from Napoleon by the treaty of 1803. tember last.

limited to particular States and Territories. A The next enlargement of our territory was ef- Of the public domain, there have been disposed general law authorizing preëmptions upon lands fected by the treaty of 1819 with Spain, ceding the of by private claims, grants, sales, &c., embrac- of this character, superseding or repealing special Floridas to the United States; then its further | ing surveyed and unsurveyed land, 363,862,464 statutes on the subject, would conduce to the harextension was effected by the treaty of 1848, at acres, which, deducted from the whole surface, as mony of the system; and such a law is recomGuadalupe Hidalgo, with Mexico, ceding New above stated, leaves undisposed of an area of mended. Mexico and California. Subsequently, Texas ac- 1,086,137,536 acres.

In order to remove all doubt in the construccepted the proposition of this Government estab- During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1857, | tion of existing law, preëmption privileges should lishing her boundaries, for the “relinquishment and the quarter ending September 30, 1857, public also be extended to alternate reserved railroad by the said State of all territory claimed by her i lands have been surveyed and reported to the sections, in cases where settlements have been exterior to said boundaries." The last accession extent of 22,889,461 acres. During the same made after the final allotment. The enhanced to the public domain is that, in 1854, from Mexico, || period 21,160,037.27 acres have been disposed of, \ value of such lands presents only a stronger reaknown as the “ Gadsden purchase,” covering a as follows: For cash, 5,300,550.31 acres; located son why preference should be given to settlers surface of 23,161,000 acres, south of the Gila river. with military warrants, 7,381,010 acres; returned over all others.

The Supreme Court has said, in reference to under swamp land grant, 3,362,475.96 acres; The mode of disposing of the public lands acquired lands, that “the people change their estimated quantity of railroad grants, of March, under existing legislation is simple, uniform, and sovereign; their right to property remains unaf- 1857, 5,116,000 acres. The amount of money complete. Lands are introduced into market, fected by this change. Consequently, when the received on cash sales is $4,225,908 18.

and opened to free competition at public sale by United States succeeded to the ownership of that This shows a falling off in land receipts from the President's proclamation, which, at the same portion of our territory derived from treaties with those for the corresponding period of the pre- time, notifies seitlers to come forward and secure foreign Powers, the first and paramount duty in ceding year of $5,322,145 99; with a falling off their homes at the minimum price, without risk the disposal of the public lands was to separate during the same period, in the location of lands of competition at public sale. Then such lands private from public property.

with warrants, of more than twenty per cent. as remain thus undisposed of, are open to free In obedience to this well-settled principle of Whatever may have been the cause of this purchase at private sale, at the ordinary minipublic law, and under the especial obligations of diminution, the fact demonstrates that, long before mum of $1 25 per acre; or when in market ten treaties, the United States have established boards the prostration of all credit by the suspension of years and upwards, at reduced prices-always, of commissioners, conferred powers on registers the banking institutions, the investment in wild || however, with the preference right of purchase and receivers, opened the courts of the United lands had greatly decreased.

awarded to the actual settler. States for the adjudication of foreign titles, and In the territory of the United States there are The public domain is the property of the United in multitudes of cases confirmed such titles by | eighty-three organized land districts, each having | States, and the individual citizens thereof have special acts of legislation.

a register and receiver, for the sale and disposal equal rights of purchase. Actual settlers, as These classes of titles are known under the of the public lands. Yet we have no land district already shown, are amply protected by law from generic description of private land claims,” and for either the Territory of New Mexico or Utah. | interference, and efficient safeguards are thrown are of every species, from minute parcels in the In New Mexico the public surveys have been ex- around their rights. As an evidence of this, it is form of lois in Spanish towns to rural claims, ecuted to a very limited extent, owing to Indian estimated that, in the sales of the last year, three ranging in size from one hundred arpents and hostilities. In Utah the surveys had rapidly pro- | fourths of the sold and located lands were taken less to a million and a half acres.

gressed, until the surveyor general abandoned his foractual settlement. Large districts of the public These titles are of British, French, Spanish, | post owing to reported hostilities of the Mormon || lands are valuable, however, only for the timber and Mexican origin, all depending for validity on authorities at Salt Lake City. The extent of the li found upon them: they are unsuitable for settle


[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]


ment; and to restrict their purchase to settlers | wide dissimilarity, too, of the provisions of the practicable. The country is unsuited to his wants; alone, would prevent their sale for an indefinite various treaties recently negotiated with the sev- it has no sufficient supply of wood or water, and period, and hold out a standing temptation to eral tribes, agreeing, however, in this, that legis- a removal there would but be the means of hasta trespass and plunder.

lation by Congress is made a prerequisite to the lening on his bitter fate. Where he now is, he An amendment of the law fixing the maximum || full enjoyment by the Indian of the rights they must make a stand and struggle for existence, or compensation of the registers and receivers, so as were intended to secure to him, furnishes a his doom is sealed. If he cannot adopt the habits, to restrict the payment for any one quarter or weighty reason for the revision and codification and rise to the level of his white neighbor, he fraction of a quarter to a pro rata allowance, both of the laws now in force; and it is to be hoped | must pass away; and the necessity of devising for salary and commissions, is approved and rec- that Congress will give its early attention to the some policy which shall meet the emergency ommended.

subject, and prescribe, in one comprehensive en- presses itself upon the Government at this time Under the bounty land law of 3d March, 1855, actment, a well-considered, compact, and uniform | with peculiar force. So far as the Indians of the large sums have been received at some of the local system of laws for the regulation of Indian in- central and northern superintendencies are conland offices for the location of warrants, and claims

cerned, the question is especially embarrassing. have been presented by several of the officers for The Indian tribes within our limits, numbering Treaties have, within the last three years, been the whole amount of fees collected. The General about three hundred and twenty-five thousand negotiated with most of these tribes, by which Land Office has decided, and the decision has been souls, may be divided into three classes: The their lands, with the exception of small reservasanctioned by the Department, that, in view of || first-wild, roving, fierce, retaining all the tradi- tions, have been ceded to the United States. the limitation as to maximum in the act of 20th | tionary characteristics which marked the race Other treaties have been made, by which indiApril, 1818, and the terms of the second and third | before the advent of the white man-eke out by | vidual reservations have been secured, in the exsections of the act of 220 March, 1852, in con- plunder the uncertain subsistence derived from pectation that the Indian would settle down, each nection with the act of 1855, there is no author- the chase. To this class, comprising nearly three upon his own farm, and gradually and insensibly ity of law for the allowance of any excess over fourths of the whole number, belong most of the attain the level of his neighbors. Unhappily for the maximum compensation for commissions, as bands whose hunting grounds lie in the interior the success of this scheme, an unprecedented tide fixed by said act of 1818.

of the continent, and in the Territories of Oregon of emigration pressed into Kansas and Nebraska. The act of 12th January, 1825, authorizes re- and Washington. These tribes are controllable The fertility of the reservations, greatly enhanced payment of purchase money to be made from the only through their fears. They are, ostensibly, || in value by the rapid settlement of the country,

Treasury in all cases of sales of lands made by our friends, because they dare not openly avow tempted alike the cupidity of the land speculator the local land officers, where the Government is hostility; and this must continue to be the case and of a class of settlers by no means punctilious unable, from want of title in itself, to issue pat- as long as they retain their roving habits. The in their respect for the right of the Indian. The ents to the purchasers.

Indian office is powerless to effect any ameliora- | result has been disastrous. Trespassed upon My predecessors have construed this act as pro- tion of their condition until they can be induced everywhere, his timber spoiled, himself threatviding for repayments in all cases where, from any to adopt fixed habitations. To the accomplish-ened with personal violence, feeling unable to cope cause, the sale could not be confirmed; and the ment of this preliminary step the efforts of the with the superior race that surrounded and pressed uniform practice has been in conformity with that Indian bureau are now directed; and it is hoped upon him, the Indian proprietor has become disview of the law.

that, with the aid of the military arm of the Gov-heartened. Many of ihem have abandoned their This practice is unquestionably founded in strict ernment, the system of colonization, which has reserves, and still more desire to sell. These justice, and I have not deemed it best to disturb elsewhere been so productive of good, may be Indians now ask for patents, as they have a right it, although inclined to the opinion that a strict successfully applied to these tribes.

to do, for their selections. The treaties vest in construction of the law would limit its operation The tribes of California, Utah, Texas, New | Congress the power of providing for their issue to the class of cases specifically embraced therein. | Mexico, and a portion of those in Oregon, con

ance, “ with such guards and restrictions as may Should any doubt be entertained of the propriety stitute the second class. Some three years since seem advisable for their protection therein." There of my action in this particular, such amendatory the policy was adopted of concentrating these can be no doubt that our people will succeed m legislation is respectfully recommended as may Indians on small reservations, where they might | getting possession of these homes of the Indian. be called for in the premises.

be practically taught the industrial arts, and la- || If Congress shall fail to act, and thus open no The interesting communication, which accom- bor for their support under the immediate super- door by which the Indians can divest themselves panies this report, of the late Secretary of the Ter- vision of their agent. These establishments are, of their titles, it may be apprehended that unritory of New Mexico, respecting the mineral in fact, manual-labor schools on a large scale; scrupulous men will, without law, obtain

possesresources of that distant Territory, suggests the and I am gratified to be able to state that the hap- sion of their lands for a trifling consideration, propriety of providing for a geological survey piest results have followed their introduction and stand the chances of an ultimate title. The thereof. It is not doubted that vast quantities of The two great difficulties to be encountered in interest of the reserve requires the passage of a gold and silver, copper, lead, and iron ores are to effecting the civilization of the Indian, are his law regulating the alienation of his right to his be found imbedded in its soil; and their discovery | impatience of restraint and his aversion to labor; | land, and securing him the payment of a fair and development could not fail to conduce to the and these are not to be overcome by abstract equivalent for the same. public prosperity.

teachings. He must be taught practically, if at all, For their numbers, the income of most of these The report of the Commissioner of Indian Af- the immense superiority of a settled over a rov- tribes, in the way of annuity, is large; but expe fairs furnishes an interesting view of a peculiaring life, and the value and dignity of labor. This, | rience has shown that the system heretofore purpeople, with whom this Government holds the the colonization system appears to be accomplish- sued, of paying them in money at stated periods, most complicated relations.

ing, and it is certainly the most effectual and eco- has been productive of evil rather than good. It The members of the Indian tribes within our nomical plan yet devised for his reclamation. represses industry and self-reliance, it encourages limits, while they are not citizens, cannot, with The Indians along the west bank of the Mis- || idleness and extravagance, and draws around them strict propriety, be termed foreigners. “Do- i souri, those of Kansas, and the four great tribes a swarm of unprincipled traders. In many of the mestic dependent nations, their relations to the occupying the territory west of Arkansas, form treaties which have lately been negotiated with United States resemble those of a ward to his a third class, differing in many particulars from these tribes, this provision has been inserted: guardian. They look to our Government for pro- | either of the others. Generally true and reliable, “ The object of this instrument being to advance tection, and appeal to it for relief to their wants." they constitute a people for whom we justly feel the interests of said Indians, it is agreed” that While we negotiate treaties with them, which the deepest sympathy and the greatest solicitude. “Congress may hereafter make such provision are ratified with all the solemnity befitting a con- The degree of civilization to which these tribes | by law as expérience shall prove to be necestract to which nations are parties, we undertake have attained varies greatly in different localities. sary to construe and execute their provisions, ac- Some of them, steeped in ignorance, thoroughly If Congress, in the exercise of this power, knowledging no responsibility but such as we degraded, seeni, in their contact with our people, should clothe this Department with some discremay owe to truth, honor, and justice. As the to have lost the rude virtues that characterized tion in the payment of annuities, so that the same limits of our civilization have been extended, the them in a savage state, and acquired from civili- could be used as a means of their moral reform number of these children of the forest with whom zation only its vices Others have rapidly ad- || and elevation, instead of the injurious system our people are brought into immediate contact is vanced, socially, morally, and in the knowledge now prevailing, of distributing money per capita, greatly increased. Treaties multiply; rights are of the useful arts, until they have become fit io. decided advantages may be reasonably anticiacquired; mutual obligations are assumed; obe- be recognized as citizens. Here and there is | pated, dience is promised on the one part, protection is found one whose talents, attainments, and integ- The plan which has suggested itself as the most guarantied on the other. The Indian bureau is rity, constitute him an ornament to his race, and, likely to arrest the demoralization now rapidly grown to be a great foreign office, conducting the while he challenges our admiration and respect, increasing, and, at the same time, lay a solid correspondence and adjusting the relations of furnishes practical evidence of the capacity of the foundation for their ultimate civilization, may be more than sixty interior governments; while it is | Indian for high civilization.

briefly outlined thus: at the same time charged with the control, regu- When those tribes who once resided east of They should be gathered on smaller reservalation, and protection of the rights of the indi- || the Mississippi river were induced to leave the tions and in denser settlements. They must be vidual members of those Governments. graves of their fathers and emigrate to the west,

familiarized with the idea of separate property, In the performance of these duties questions | the Congress of the United States gave them a by encouraging them to erect houses as homes are presented of the most difficult character, in | solemn pledge that the country where they now for themselves and their families. For this purthe solution of which it is almost impossible to reside should be forever" secured and guarantied" || pose the reservations should be divided into farms arrive at a conclusion which shall reconcile the to them. The westward march of emigration, ll of suitable size, and distributed among the indinecessities of sound policy with the requirements | however, has overtaken the Indian, and now | viduals of the tribes, to hold, in severaliy, as their of the law. The intercourse act of 1834 was begins to press upon him; and it is evident that a separate and private estate, but without the power adapted to a condition of affairs which no longer || critical period in his history has been reached. of selling, mortgaging, leasing, or in any manner exists, and it might be judiciously modified. The To attempt his removal still further west is im- || alienating the same, except to members of the same

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

tribe with themselves. Settlements by white men be done by peaceful means. Let an appropria- | naked act of legislation by an executive officer. within the reserves should be prohibited, and the tion be made to defray the expenses of a delega- . I felt no hesitation, therefore, in ordering a disprohibition rigidly enforced; and increased efforts tion from each of the large tribes in those distant continuance of the practice in question; and all the should be made to suppress the sale of ardent Territories, to Washington and other eastern cases coming within it will be indefinitely susspirits, to effect which the coöperation of the In- cities. Let them know, by personal observation, pended, unless Congress shall pass a law giving dian authorities should be secured. Farms should our numbers, see our improvements, and estimate to children and grandchildren the pensions their be established in central positions, at which all our strength. They would readily conclude that deceased ancestors would have received had the the children of the tribe should be collected and further hostility would be absurd; and when they proper proof been made out during their lifetime. required to labor, and where they could be taught carried the story of our greatness and power to A pension is a bounty given by Government the rudiments of an education. A certain portion their people, a change would come over their for meritorious personal service, and the first of them should be apprenticed to useful trades, minds, and we mighi then reasonably hope for law granting pensions for revolutionary services and the surplus of the proceeds of their labor, the establishment, by treaties, of good under confined the bounty to the indigent soldiers. But, whether on the farm or in the workshop, should standing and perpetual peace between us. Such whether this restriction be correct or not, it is be divided among their parents. Here they would an appropriation would be, in my judgment, an self-evident that the great inducement, in all penbe taught the great truths that labor is' honoract of true economy.

sion laws, is to relieve and compensate, in his able, and that want and suffering inevitably follow During the past year a large amount was paid own proper person, the self-sacrificing soldier, in the train of improvidence and idleness. Im- || into the Treasury of the United States on account who risked his life, wasted his energies, and negplements of husbandry, blankets and clothing, of moneys belonging to certain Indian tribes. lected his private affairs in the service of his counuseful articles of furniture, books, and, indeed, | The several treaties under which this amount try. The law has extended its beneficence from everything which promises to give comfort to was derived devolved upon the President the duty the soldier to his widow, and there it has stopped. their homes, should be purchased and divided of causing it to be invested in some “safe and If Congress shall take one step further, and proper capita.

profitable stocks,” to be held by the Secretary vide for children and grandchildren on account Should their income be more than sufficient to of the Interior in trust for the respective tribes. of the services of their ancestors, the question meet the outlay required for these purposes, then In pursuance of your directions, these Indian arises, why take care of the children and grandthe remainder might be paid in money. Now trust funds were invested in State stocks which children of those whose fortune it was to live till the annual indiscriminate distribution of their were deemed safe and profitable. The amount Congress had passed a pension act, and not of national funds among the Indians is gradually of bonds purchased was $1,481,476 03, costing those, equally meritorious, who died in the serworking their ruin ; whereas a wise policy, such | $1,291,677 49.

vice, or who dragged out a miserable existence, as any parental Government should adopt, would The investment having been made at a time of uncared for and unrecognized by the Governnecessarily produce the happiest results. unusual financial embarrassment, we were enabled

ment? The details of the system should, of course, to make a profit of $190,398 54 for the Indian The children and grandchildren and great grandbe modified to suit the varied conditions of the tribes, and at the same time to afford relief, to children should be contented in the rich inheritseveral tribes; but the uniform application of its some extent, to the business community. ance derived from a glorious ancestry, in the libleading ideas to the government of the tribes in The report of the Commissioner of Pensions erties they enjoy, and in the institutions which the central and northern superintendencies is, I || presents a satisfactory view of the operations of give them protection. Congress has not been conceive, indispensable.

ihat bureau during the last year. The business unmindful of our revolutionary heroes. It has The condition of affairs in the southern super- | of the office has been brought up to date, as nearly | dealt out to them with no sparing hand. Up to intendency presents a gratifying spectacle. The as it is practicable; and the large clerical force, the 30th June, 1857, under the pension laws of four great tribes of Choctaws, Chickasaws, Cher- required to dispatch the heavy labors devolved || 1818, 1828, and 1832, $43,011,960 had been paid okees and Creeks, with the kindred band of Sem- | upon it by the recent laws granting bounty land, to revolutionary soldiers; and under the acts of inoles occupying the territory west of Arkansas, has been reduced, so as to conform to the present 1836, 1838, 1848, and 1853, $18,302,660 had been have steadily improved in morals, in education, l exigencies of the office.

paid to the widows of our revolutionary soldiersin the comprehension of, and respect for, the For some years past, the practice has prevailed | making an aggregate, in money, of $61,314,620, rights of persons and of property, and in a knowl- of paying to the children, and sometimes to the besides large donations of land and disbursements edge of the theory and principles of government. || administrators, of deceased revolutionary soldiers of money, under other laws, on account of revoThey have regularly organized governments, con- and their deceased widows, the amount of pen- lutionary services. structed upon the model of our own, State con- sion to which such soldiers or widows would The discriminations pointed out by the Comstitutions, governors, legislatures, codes of laws, have been entitled had they succeeded in making missioner of Pensions as existing between the and judicial magistracics to expound them. There good their claims during their lifetime, but never invalid and half-pay pensions for the Army and the path of duty is plain. Every encouragement to grandchildren, as such. At the last term of the Navy, would seem to demand revision and should be held' out to them to persevere in well the Supreme Court it was decided, in a case in- | correction by Congress. Some reorganization of doing, until the period arrives when, ripe for cit- || volving the distribution of certain pension moneys the systems upon which those pensions are grantizenship, they shall be admitted to the full enjoy- which had been paid to an administrator for the ed is desirable, not only because of the inadement of all its rights and privileges.

exclusive benefit of the children of a deceased quacy of the lower rates to relieve the wants of One grievance, however, to which they are widow of a revolutionary soldier, that grand- | those intended to be benefited, but because of subjected, and of which they justly. complain, || children, per stirpes, stood in the same relation to the manifest propriety of making, like provision deserves the consideration of Congress. While such claims as children; and it was subsequently for those of corresponding grades in the two arms the Constitution, laws, and treaties of the Uni- || contended that the effect of that decision was not of the service who may become disabled while in ted States are in force over this territory, there is only to affirm the legal correctness of the practice the faithful discharge of duty. no local tribunal empowered to take cognizance | alluded to, but to enlarge it, so as to embrace a During the past year 41,483 warrants for bounty of the causes which arise under them—which, class of claimants not previously recognized by land have been issued, requiring, to satisfy them, therefore, are sent for trial to the United States it.

5,952,160 acres of the public domain; and the district courts in the State of Arkansas. This Seeing that a large amount of money had number issued under all the bounty land acts of not only causes great expense and inconvenience | already been drawn from the Treasury under the Congress from the revolutionary war to the presto the suitors, but, in criminal cases especially, practice of the office, and doubting whether the ent time is 547,250, requiring, to satisfy them, interferes with the impartial administration of court had gone beyond the mere question of dis- 60,704,904 acres of land. justice. A Choctaw or Chickasaw, accused of tribution involved in the cause before it, and de- The frauds practiced upon the Pension office an offense against the laws of the United States, cided as to the law on which that practice was in attempts to procure, and in the actual procureis hurried away from his friends, to be tried at founded, I availed myself of the first case that ment of land warrants, are numerous; but, owing a remote point, in a community which has no arose to elicit the views of the Attorney General, to the short statutory limit of two years, the sympathy with him. Unable to compel the at- both as to the effect of the decision of the court frauds are not discovered, and many guilty pertendance of his witnesses, and deprived of the and the legality of the previous ruling of the of- sons escape. I would, therefore, recommend an aid and comfort extended to the white man sim- fice. He thoroughly investigated the whole sub- extension of the limit now made by the law for ilarly situated, he defends himself under great | ject, and gave a most lucid and convincing opin- | the prosecution of offenses of this kind. disadvantages. There is a manifest injustice in ion on the law of the case; in which he came to The Commissioner of Pensions has called my this which should be remedied at once; and I the conclusion that soldiers or widows, who might attention, also, to the fact, that the forging of land would suggest the establishment by Congress of | have been entitled to pensions in their lifetime, warrants is rendered penal by no existing law. a district court of the United States for this ter- but died without establishing their right or re- The extent to which ihis evil practice exists is ritory, to hold at least one term annually for each | ceiving the same, left no estate in their claims not known, but the importance of some legislaof the four tribes of Cherokees, Creeks, Choc- which could be inherited either by grandchildren | tive action upon the subject is obvious, and I taws, and Chickasaws. Among these tribes or children; that arrears of pension, which alone, would respectfully recommend that Congress there are educated, well-read lawyers; and the || by the statute, were inheritable, only existed in provide some law which may serve as a protecholding of a court in their country would create, cases where a pension had once been received, || tion to the Government. in the minds of the people, respect for the laws, || and, at the death of the pensioner, a portion was The report of the Commissioner of Public and give dignity to the administration of justice. left unpaid; and that the Supreme Court, in the Buildings furnishes a detailed and satisfactory

The Indians of the Territories of Washington | decision referred to, had not passed upon that statement of the application of the appropriations and Oregon are still restive and belligerent. This question. In this opinion I concurred; and, as placed under his more immediate direction. disposition on their part evidently springs from there was no law for the payment of pensions in The west wing of the Patent Office building is disbelief in the strength and ability of this Gov- such cases, and as no money could be drawn nearly completed throughout, and presents an ernment to punish them for trespasses committed from the Treasury without a previous appropri-elegant and tasteful appearance. The north front upon our settlements. It is the duty of the Gov- | ation, any payment ordered by me would have of the building is in the process of erection. ernment to disabuse their minds. This can best Il been againsi law, and would have amounted to a Satisfactory contracts have been entered into for 35th Cong....1st Sess.

Report of the Secretary of the Interior.




the granite and marble work; the sub-basement The Government, however, is a large real- with communicated. It exhibits the institution has been finishd; and the contractors are press- estate proprietor in the city of Washington; and in rather a crippled condition. It is in debt, and ing forward their operations with a commendable provision is made in the charter of incorporation it needs more land, better buildings, and a larger zeal. This portion of the building will be com- by which the Commissioner of Public Buildings income to pay the teachers. It has fifteen pupils, pleted by the appropriations already made, and is directed to reimburse the corporation a just fourteen of which are maintained by the Governno estimate is now deemed necessary for the im- proportion of the expense incurred in opening ment. The charity is a noble one, but as it is not provement and inclosure of the grounds around it. and improving streets passing through and along a Government institution, it is for Congress to

An extraordinary flood, during the last winter, || public squares. This expense has been hereto- determine whether further assistance shall be exswept away several sections of the bridge across fore defrayed out of money arising from the sale tended to it. the Potomac. The authorities of the city of of lots belonging to the Government; but this The report of the inspectors of the penitenWashington repaired the breach, and the bridge resource has now failed us, and an estimate has tiary, with the accompanying reports of the warhas been otherwise placed in such condition as been submitted for an appropriation out of the den, clerk, physician, matron, and chaplain, are to make its passage safe. This, however, is a national Treasury on that account.

herewith submitted. They furnish a detailed temporary arrangement, but it is the only one by The reservations owned by the United States account of the administration of the affairs of the which a convenient connection between the city within the city of Washington require to be im- penitentiary for the past year. The views exof Washington and the shore of Virginia can be proved by the General Government. Much at- pressed by the inspectors of the present working had at present. A permanent bridge across the tention has been bestowed upon these during the of the penitentiary, and their recommendations Potomac is a necessity, and it is for Congress to last few years, and several of them have been for its future improvement, are approved and determine its location and its character.

substantially inclosed and tastefully embellished. commended to your favorable consideration. The District of Columbia has been set apart | But while much has been accomplished, more re- The report of the engineer in charge of the for the capital of the nation, and the relations of mains to be done; and liberal appropriations construction of the bridge across the Potomac its people to the General Government are alto- might, with propriety, be made for the continua- at Little Falls, exhibits the progress of that gether anomalous. Without a representative in | tion of these improvements whenever the condi- work, and the probability of its early completion. Congress, and with no voice in the election of tion of the Treasury will admit of it.

There have been unavoidable delays, which are their Chief Magistrate, so far as political rights The grounds around the Capitol are particu- explained, but the work, when finished, will be are concerned its inhabitants occupy the attitude | larly commended to the favorable consideration creditable alike to the engineer and the Governof a dependent people. But they are, neverthe- of Congress, in the hope that early measures less, American citizens, and, as such, have rights may be taken to relieve them of their present un- By a joint resolution of the last Congress, the and interests which are dear to them, to guard comely appearance. The time has come when duty was devolved upon this Department of diswhich facilities should be afforded them, as to some plan should be agreed upon for their exten- | tributing a portion of the journals and congresevery other portion of our fellow-citizens, of sion; but how far they should be extended is a sional documents to the public libraries, &c., making known their wants, through their own question to be determined by congressional ac- previously distributed by the Department of representative, to the only body clothed with the

State. As the resolution prescribed no rule by authority to supply them. There can be no The auxiliary guard is a police force provided which the distribution should be made, it is projust reason for the distinction which has here- by the Government for the protection of property posed to send to each State copies in proportion tofore prevailed-allowing a Territory, with a and the preservation of the peace within the city to its Federal representation, and the distribution meager population, a delegate upon the floor of of Washington. Its members are paid from the will be made on that basis, unless Congress shall Congress, to make known its requirements and public Treasury, through the Commissioner of otherwise direct. It is respectfully suggested that advocate its interests, and denying the same priv- || Public Buildings, but derive their appointments a law be passed for the future government of the ilege to this District, with its seventy-five thou- from the Mayor of the city, to whom alone they Department in reference to this subject. sand inhabitants. It would be an act of justice are responsible for the faithful discharge of their To this Department belongs the supervision of to provide a seat on the floor of the House of || duties. It is respectfully recommended that the the accounts of marshals, district attorneys, and Representatives for a delegate to be chosen by law on this subject be so far amended as to re- clerks of the circuit and district courts of the the people of the District of Columbia. Such an quire these appointments, before they can take United States, and no other branch of the public arrangement would remove a just ground of com- effect, to be reported to and approved by some service is encompassed with greater difficulties in plaint, that they have no accredited organ by officer of the Government, either the Commis- its administration. In some respects advantageous which their interests can be fairly and favorably sioner of Public Buildings or the Marshal of the changes might be made, and additional legislation brought to the consideration of Congress. District of Columbia, and to give such officer the is recommended.

In the act to incorporate the city of Washing-power of removal from office whenever, in his By the act of February 28, 1799, fees for serton, passed May 15, 1820, Congress invested the opinion, the public good may render it neces- vices rendered by district attorneys in the percorporation with full power and authority to "lay, sary:

formance of their duties were specifically preand collect taxes;" "to erect and repair bridges;' The reports of the superintendent and board of scribed, and in certain districts named an annual "to open and keep in repair streets, avenues, visitors of the Government hospital for the insane salary was provided, " as a full compensation for lanes, alleys, drains, and sewers, agreeably to the accompany this report. The number of patients all extra services.. All district attorneys, except plan of the city;"'"10 erect lamps, and to occupy in the hospital, July 1, 1856, was ninety-three. the one in southern New York, now draw a saland improve for public purposes, by and with | During the fiscal year ending June 30, 1857, fifty- ary, the greater part of them at the rate of, and the consent of the President of the United States, two were admitted, and thirty-five discharged, none less than, two hundred dollars per annum. any part of the public and open spaces and leaving in the institution, at the last-mentioned But the repeated applications for compensation squares in said city, not interfering with private | date, one hundred and ten, four of whom arc in- for extra services by these officers is becoming a rights."

dependent or pay patients. This number ex- serious evil. In conferring these powers upon the corpora- | ceeds the rated capacity of that part of the build- Some of the district attorneys assume that they tion, Congress must have acted on the conviction || ing now completed; but an appropriation has been are under no official obligation to render any serthat it was the duty of the city, and not of the || made for the construction of the center building vice for the Government for which no fee is preGeneral Government, to open and repair streets and three sections of the wings, according to the scribed under existing laws, such as preparing a and avenues, as well as to make the other im- i original plan adopted, which are in process of case for trial, procuring and examining witnesses, provements indicated.

erection, and which will be pressed to completion examining title to property purchased for the use It is evident that the city authorities, acting with all proper dispatch and economy,

When of the United States; and they insist, as a matter under the influence of a city constituency familiar these portions of the building are finished, it is of equity, if not of strict legal right, that they are with the localities, and well informed as to the believed its capacity will be sufficient to meet all entitled to compensation for all professional sertrue interests and requirements of the people, are present demands for the accommodation of this vices, other than those specifically enumerated less liable to be misled in such ifatters by the rep- | unfortunate class of our people.

in the fee ach notwithstanding they receive a resentationsof private interests than those whose The institution is conducted with skill and fixed compensation for all extra services, and the attention is chiefly taken up with subjects of more fidelity, and reflects credit upon all who are con- act itself declares, “no other compensation shall general concern, and who are not supposed to be cerned in its management.

be taxed or allowed" than the fees therein prespecially interested in the material advancement At the last session of Congress, an act was

scribed. of the city.

passed incorporating the Columbia Institution for I recommend an increase of the salaries of the It seems to be eminently proper, therefore, that | the Instruction of the Deaf, Dumb, and Blind. respective district attorneys, graduated by some these improvements should be made, in pursuance In the charter of incorporation it is made the duty equitable rule, coupled with a provision devolving of the provisions of the charter, under the direc- of the Secretary of the Interior, whenever he is upon those officers the duty of faithfully performtion of the city authorities; and hence no esti- satisfied that "any deaf and dumb or blind person ing all such services, in the line of their profesmates have been submitted therefor by this De- of teachable age, properly belonging to this Dis- sion, as should be required of them in every case partment. Beyond the appropriations made by trict, is in indigent circumstances, and cannot in which the interests of the Governinent are in Congress for these objects, neither the Commis- command the means to secure an education,” to any way involved, and declaring that the receipt sioner of Public Buildings nor the Secretary of authorize the said person to enter the said insti- of such salary shall operate as a full discharge of the Interior has been intrusted with this duty. || tution for instruction, and

pay for his or her

all claim on the part of the recipient for compenThe law relieves this Department from the obli- maintenance and tuition therein, at the rate of sation for all services not enumerated in such fee gation, not unfrequently urged, of initiating plans | $150 per annum. In pursuance of this provision bill as may at the time be in force. and suggesting appropriations for the opening, of law, fourteen pupils have been placed in the Experience has demonstrated that a change improvement, and lighting of streets and avenues, || institution.

may be made with propriety in the law providand for the construction of drains and sewers in The report of the president of the institution, ing for the appointmeni of clerks of the several the city. which he is required to make annually, is here

United States courts. New SERIES—No. 2.

« 上一頁繼續 »