Lapas attēli
PDF
ePub

The attention of the profession is invited to the following practical features of this work :

TABLE OF CASES.

In the citations of cases in notes to the text, the official report in which the case cited appears is alone given. The table of cases in the front of the first volume, gives, however, in addition to the year in which the decision is rendered, duplicate citations to most of the standard reports where the case has been reprinted. A few illustrations will serve to demonstrate the value of such a table over the ordinary one usually appearing in textbooks :

Harris v. Equator M. & S. Co. (1881), 3 McCrary 14; 8 Fed. 863;

12 Morr. 178, 8% 539, 688. Iron S. M. Co. v. Elgin S. M. Co. (1886), 118 U. S. 196; L. ed. 30; 98;

15 Morr. 641, 32 58, 318, 364, 365, 552, 567, 576, 582, 583, 593. Williams v. Gibson (1887), 84 Ala. 228; 5 Am. St. Rep., 368; 4 So.

Rep. 350; 16 Morr. 253, %% 812, 813, 814, 821.

THE APPENDIX. The appendix contains the congressional, state and territorial legislation on mining subjects in force September, 1897; also the existing departmental regulations concerning the sale and disposal of mineral lands. These statutes and regulations have been annotated with reference to the text, the notes indicating the section of the work where the particular subject covered by the act is discussed. The few rulings of the courts and land department made while the work was passing through the press will also be found in these notes.

THE INDEX. In connection with indexing the teact, the author has also indexed the appendix, so that the statutory declarations on a given subject will be found in connection with a reference to the section of the text where the decisions are cited and the Author's conclusions stated.

A TRE A TISE

ON THE

AMERICAN LAW RELATING TO MINES

AND MINERAL LANDS

WITHIN THE

PUBLIC LAND STATES AND TERRITORIES

AND

GOVERNING THE ACQUISITION AND ENJOYMENT
OF MINING RIGHTS IN LANDS OF

THE PUBLIC DOMAIN

[blocks in formation]

I hold every man a debtor to his profession; from the
which, as men of course do seek to receive countenance and
profit, so ought they of duty to endeavor themselves, by way
of amends, to be a help and ornament thereto."

"Et opus desperatum, quasi per medium profundum
euntes, coelesti favore jam adimplevimus."

- From Dedication of Justinian's Institutes.

[ocr errors]

FRANCISCO

SAN FRANCISCO
BANCROFT-WHITNEY COMPANY
LAW PUBLISHERS AND LAW BOOKSELLERS

1897

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

PREFACE.

The United States cannot be said to possess a National Mining Code, in the sense that the term is used and understood among the older nations of the earth.

The system of rules which sanctions and regulates the acquisition and enjoyment of mining rights, and defines the conditions under which title may be obtained to mineral lands within the publie domain of the United States is composed of several elements, most of which find expression in positive legislative enactment. Others, while depending for their existence and application upon the sanction of the General Government, either express or implied, are in a measure controlled by local environment, and are evidenced by the expressed will of local assemblages embodied in written regulations, or rest in unwritten customs peculiar to the vicinage.

American mining law may therefore be said to be found expressed -

(1) In the legislation of Congress ;

(2) In the legislation of the various states and territories supplementing Congressional action, and in harmony therewith;

(3) In local rules and customs or regulations established in different localities not repugnant to Federal legislation, or that of the state or territory wherein they are operative.

This system, as thus constituted, is deemed national only in a restricted sense. As a rule of property, it has no application or force in many of the states of the Union.

Generally speaking, its operation is limited geographically to the area acquired by the General Government by cession from the original states, or by treaty with or purchase from foreign powers subsequent to the organization of the General Government, or perhaps, more logically stated, its operation is co-extensive with the area of the publie domain, the primary

ownership and right of disposal of which resides in the General Government.

It does not seek to regulate or control mines or mining within lands held in private ownership, except such only as are acquired directly from the Government under the mining laws, and then only forming a muniment of the locator's or purchaser's title, and measuring his rights.

It does not require the payment of either tribute or royalty, as a condition upon which the public mineral lands may be explored or worked.

It treats the Government simply as a private proprietor holding the paramount title to its public domain, with right of disposal, upon such terms and conditions, and subject to such limitations, as the law-making power may prescribe.

The National Government acquired no rights of property within the present boundaries of the thirteen original states. Nor in the states of Vermont, Kentucky, Maine, or West Virginia, which were severally carved out of territory originally forming a part of some one of the original States. Nor in Texas, as by the terms of its admission into the Union the state retained all the vacant and unappropriated public lands lying within its limits, for the purpose of liquidating its debt contracted while it was an independent republic.

The entire area of Tennessee was originally public domain; but the United States donated the same to the State, after deducting the lands necessary to fill the obligations in the deed of cession of North Carolina.

In Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, and Wisconsin, lands of the Government containing the baser metals (lead and copper) were ordered sold under special laws, prior to the discovery of gold in California.

By acts of Congress, passed at different times, Alabama, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Missouri, and Kansas were excepted from the operation of the general mining laws.

The system is inoperative in Oklahoma, as by congressional law all lands within that territory are declared to be agricultural.

With the exception, perhaps, of lands containing deposits of coal, and some of the baser metallic substances, the system

« iepriekšējāTurpināt »