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69TH CONGRESS, Į HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES. 2d Session.
LAND DISTRICT, VALLEY COUNTY, MONT.
FEBRUARY 2, 1907.-Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the state
of the Union and ordered to be printed.
Mr. Dixon, of Montana, from the Committee on the Public Lands,
submitted the following
(To accompany H. R. 20984.]
The Committee on the Public Lands, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 20984) to provide for a land district in Valley County, Mont., having had the same under consideration, respectfully submit the following report:
At the present time Valley County, Mont., embracing an area of 1,611,722 acres, constitutes a portion of the Great Falls land district, which embraces an area of 7,550,099 acres of land. The settlers in this part of Montana are situated 400 miles from the land office where they are compelled to transact their business affecting the entry and final proof of their homesteads.
Both the Commissioner of the General Land Office and the Secretary of the Interior have favorably recommended the establishment of the new land district, their reports being hereto attached and made a part of this report.
The Public Lands Committee are unanimous in recommending the passage of the bill.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Washington, January 30, 1907. Sir: In a letter of the 25th instant to the Department you inclosed H. R. 20984, entitled “A bill to provide for a land district in Valley County, in the State of Montana, to be known as the Glasgow land district," and stated that any suggestions or information that I may desire to offer in regard to the proposed measure will be laid before the committee.
In answer I have the honor to inclose a copy of a report on the bill by the Commissioner of the General Land Office, under date of the 28th instant, in which he has recommended favorable consideration of the bill, and in wbich I concur. Very respectfully,
E. A. HITCHCOCK, Secretary. The CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE PUBLIC LANDS,
House of Representatives,
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
GENERAL LAND OFFICE,
Washington, D. C., January 28, 1907. Sir: I am in receipt, by departmental reference for early report, in duplicate, with recommendation and return of papers, of letter, dated the 25th instant, from the chairman of the Committee on the Public Lands, House of Representatives, for any suggestions or information the Department may desire to offer in regard to H. R. 20984, which provides: "That all that portion of the State of Montana included within the present boundaries of Valley County is hereby constituted a new land district, and that the land office for said district shall be located at Glasgow, in said county.'
In reply I have to state that Valley County, Mont., is included within the Great Falls land district, which contained on July 1, 1906, 7,550,099 acres of vacant public lands subject to entry under the various land laws and of which 1,611,722 acres are situated in Valley County, and in view thereof I know of no reason why the additional land district should not be established, and favorable consideration of the bill is therefore recommended. The papers are returned herewith. Very respectfully,
W. A. RICHARDS,
Commiss ner. The SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR.
ALLOTMENT OF LANDS TO INDIANS OF LA POINTE OR
BAD RIVER INDIAN RESERVATION, WIS.
FEBRUARY 4, 1907.-Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be printed.
Mr. Brown, from the Committee on Indian Affairs, submitted the
[To accompany S. 2787.)
The Committee on Indian Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (S. 2787) relating to allotment of lands to Indians of La Pointe or Bad River Indian Reservation, Wis., which passed the Senate April 13, 1906, report it back with the recommendation that it pass with an amendment.
Amend by inserting after the word “reservation,” in line 9, the words “ whether born before or after the passage of said act.”
S. 2787 is identical with H. R. 9308, which was reported by this committee April 13, 1906 (Calendar No. 174, Rept. No. 3207, 59th Cong., 1st sess.), and was drafted by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, with the exception of the amendment referred to above, which is acceptable to him.
The report on H. R. 9308 is appended hereto and made a part of this report:
The Committee on Indian Affairs, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 9308) amending the act of February 11, 1901, allotting lands in severalty to the Indians of La Pointe or Bad River Reservation, in the State of Wisconsin, baving considered the same, report thereon with a recommendation that it pass.
The object of this bill is to correct a condition caused by the act of February 11, 1901, above referred to. This act authorized the allotment of lands to Indians of La Pointe or Bad River Reservation then living and residing and entitled to reside on that reservation, and who had not received allotments prior to that date. This legislation, as stated by the Commissioner of Indian Affairs in the letter appended hereto and made a part of this report, was the result of agitation among these Indians, and was designed to enlarge the right to allotment as defined in the third article of the treaty of September 30, 1854 (10 Stat. L., 1109), which prior to the act of February 11, 1901, was the law controlling allotments on the Bad River or La Pointe Reservation.
Under a construction given on June 8, 1905, to the act of February 11, 1901, by the Department of the Interior a number of full blood Indians of the Bad River or La Pointe band of Lake Superior Chippewas were denied allotments because the act specifically confined the right of allotment to "each Indian now living and residing on said reservation and entitled to so reside." These Indians at the time of the passage of the act were not residing on the reservation, but they were undoubtedly entitled to reside thereon, and have been deprived of their right to an allotment through the insufficiency of the language of the act referred to.
As the act of February 11, 1901, was in furtherance and to carry out the obligation of the Government imposed by the treaty of September 30, 1854, of furnishing to the Wisconsin bands of the Lake Superior Chippewa lands for their use and benefit for ceding to the United States their right and title to certain lands, it is only just that these Indians, who were deprived of their right to allotment by the construction given to this act, should be allowed now to secure an allotment. In regard to this the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, among other things in the letter appended hereto, says:
“ The object of the act of February 11, as has been stated, was not to restrict the right of allotment, but rather to enlarge it, and as it has had the effect of unjustly cutting out many who were formerly entitled, and who, in good faith and fair dealing, should be permitted to take allotments on the Bad River Reservation, I have caused a draft of a bill to be prepared amending the act responsible for the present situation, and submit it with the hope that it may meet
ith approval and recommend that it be transmitted to the proper committee of the Congress with a favorable recommendation."
The draft of a bill referred to is the one under consideration (H. R. 9308).
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Washington, December 13, 1905. SIR: I transmit herewith a copy of a communication of the 4th instant from the Commissioner of Indian Affairs, submitting a draft of a bill to amend the act of February 11, 1901, entitled “An act providing for allotments of lands in severalty to the Indians of the La Pointe or Bad River Reservation, in the State of Wisconsin."
The object of the amendment, as set forth in the Commissioner's report, is to authorize allotments on the reservation to full-blood nonresident Indians, who by the terms of the act of February 11, 1901, and the decision of the Department of June 8, 1905, have been barred from receiving such allotments.
The proposed legislation meets with the approval of the Department, and I have the honor to recommend that it receive the favorable action of your committee and of the Congress. Very respectfully,
E. A. HITCHCOCK,
Secretary. The CHAIRMAN COMMITTEE ON INDIAN AFFAIRS,
House of Representatives.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR, OFFICE OF INDIAN AFFAIRS,
Washington, December 4, 1905. SIR: The act of Congress approved February 11, 1901 (31 Stat. L., 766), authorized the allotment to Indians of the La Pointe or Bad River Reservation then living and residing and entitled to reside on that reservation, and who had not received allotments prior to that date. This legislation was the result of agitation among these Indians, and was designed to enlarge the right to allotment, as defined in the third article of the treaty of September 30, 1854 (10 Stat. L., 1109), which prior to the act of February 11, 1901, was the law controlling allotments on the Bad River or La Pointe Reservation.
After the passage of said act a number of schedules were prepared and submitted to the Office, and these schedules were approved by the President and patents issued. During the year 1904 a schedule of 407 names was prepared, but before it was transmitted to the Office several complaints were received, and finally the matter was investigated by Special Agent Thomas Downs. Mr. Downs found a number of full-blood Indians who were entitled to allotment under the treaty above mentioned, but who had never received lands or, indeed, any benefits with the Chippewas of Lake Superior.
Mr. Downs found that these Indians were deserving people, and in his judg. ment they should be allotted rather than the children of former allottees. He