Page images

tion of the act approved March twenty-two, eighteen hundred and fiftytwo, to make land warrants assignable, and for other purposes, shall be so extended as to embrace land warrants issued under the act of the third March, eighteen hundred and fifty-five.

Approved June 3d, 1858.

AN ACT to authorize the reissue of land warrants in certain cases, and for other purposes.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That whenever it shall appear that any certificate or warrant, issued in pursuance of any law of the United States granting bounty land, has been lost or destroyed, whether the same had been sold and assigned by the warrantee or not, the Secretary of the Interior shall be, and he is hereby, authorized and required to cause a new certificate or warrant of like tenor to be issued in lieu thereof; which new certificate or warrant may be assigned, located, and patented in like manner as other certificates or warrants for bounty land are now authorized by law to be assigned, located, and patented; and in all cases where warrants have been or may be reissued, the original warrant, in whosever hands it may be, shall be deemed and held to be null and void, and the assignment thereof, if any there be, fraudulent; and no patent shall ever issue for any land located therewith, unless such presumption of fraud in the assignment be removed by due proof that the same was executed by the warrantee in good faith and for a valuable consideration.

SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, That the said Secretary of the Interior shall be, and he is hereby, authorized and required to prescribe such rules and regulations for carrying this act into effect as he may deem necessary and proper in order to protect the government against imposition and fraud by persons claiming the benefit of this act; and all laws and parts of laws for the punishment of false swearing and frauds against the United States are hereby made applicable to false swearing and fraud under this act.

Approved June 23d, 1860.

1st. Whenever a warrant has failed to reach the hands of the party entitled to receive it, and to whom it was sent, or has been lost or destroyed after having been received, in order to prevent the issuing of a patent to a fraudulent holder of the same, the actual owner must at once file in the General Land Office a caveat in the form of an affidavit, duly authenticated, setting forth the nature of his title to the warrant, and the particulars as to its loss, and giving his post-office address.

2d. He must give public notice of the facts in the case, at least once a week for six successive weeks, in some newspaper of general circulation published at or nearest the place to which the warrant was directed, or where the loss occurred. In such publication (a copy of which must be furnished to Commissioner of

Pensions, with the affidavit of the publisher as to its due appearance) the intention must also be expressed of applying to the Commissioner of Pensions for a reissue of the lost warrant, which must be minutely described.

3d. The filing of the caveat in the General Land Office, and the advertisement of the loss being only preliminary steps towards the observance of the regulations, the owner of the lost warrant must file in the Pension Office as soon after the discovery of the loss as practicable, his declaration under oath, duly authenticated. setting forth fully and distinctly the time, place, and circumstances of the loss, and, if he be the original warrantee, that he never sold, assigned, nor voluntarily parted with his right to the warrant in question.

4th. In cases where a reissue of a warrant is sought on the ground of the non-reception of the original warrant, the agent or person to whom it was sent must unite with the warrantee or make a separate affidavit as to its non-reception.

5th. If the applicant for the reissue be not the person to whom the warrant was issued, but claims to be the owner thereof by purchase for a valuable consideration, he must give the name and residence of the warrantee, the name and residence of the person of whom he bought it, and, as far as he may know, or can ascertain, the names and residences of each of the several parties through whom the title of the warrant descended to him from the original warrantee, and adduce satisfactory evidence in proof of each and all his statements in reference thereto.

6th. The identity of the applicant must be satisfactorily established, and the credibility of each and every affiant must be duly certified by the magistrate administering the oaths, and his official character and signature must be verified by the proper officer under his seal of office.

7th. The Pension Office will also, for the space of three months, advertise the alleged loss of the original warrant and the pendency before it of the application for its reissue in the "Constitution" newspaper, published at the seat of government; and no warrant will be reissued under the foregoing act until after the expiration of three months from the date of the filing of the petition in this office, and not then if it shall appear that the original warrant is in existence.


The directions in the following circular of the General Land Office have reference, especially, to Selections for Railroad purposes. But, except the affidavits, are equally applicable to State Selections under other grants.

Each list should state specifically the grant under which the land is claimed, and bear on its face reference to the act conferring the grant by the date of its approval, and be properly verified by the signature of the selecting agent. All of the necessary forms for State or Corporation Selection lists, and for the proper verification of the same, may be obtained at the general or at the local land offices.



By the first section of the act of Congress approved July 1st, 1864, Statutes 1863-64, page 335, chap. 196, it is provided that from and after the passage of that act, "in the location of lands by States and corporations, under grants from Congress for railroads and other purposes (except for agricultural colleges), the Registers and Receivers of the Land Offices for the several States and Territories, in the districts where such lands may be located, for their services therein, shall be entitled to receive a fee of one dollar for each final location of one hundred and sixty acres, to be paid by the State or corporation making such location; the same to be accounted for in the same manner as fees and commissions on warrants and pre-emption locations, with limitations as to maximums of salary prescribed by existing laws, in accordance with such instructions as shall be given by the Commissioner of the General Land Office."

1st. Under this law the Registers and Receivers are each entitled to receive a fee of one dollar for each final location of one hundred and sixty acres, or any quantity approximate thereto, when the deficit is less than forty acres.

2d. When the several quantities shall have been definitely ascertained by you to inure to the grant, as hereinafter prescribed, the fees will then be due thereon.

3d. The State through its grantee, or the grantee, as the case may be, is required to file with the Register and Receiver of the

proper land office descriptive lists of the tracts of land claimed as inuring under the grant, within sections of miles each, along the line of route on both sides thereof, to be dated and verified by the signature of the selecting agent.

For agent's certificate to be attached to each list, see Form A. The party appearing as the agent of the grantee must file with the Register and Receiver written and satisfactory evidence, under seal, showing his authority to act in the premises.

In the preparation of the descriptive lists, the Register and Receiver will afford the agent all reasonable facilities, taking care, however, not to interrupt the current public business.

The lists must be carefully and critically examined by the Register and Receiver; their accuracy tested by the plats and records of their office. When so examined and tested, and found correct in all respects, to be a final location; and you will, on the payment of the requisite fees to the Receiver, so certify at the foot of each list, according to Form B.

After such lists have been examined, and you have attached your certificate thereto, the same will be consecutively numbered, commencing with No. 1, for each railroad or separate grant. Upon the payment of the fees and certification of the lists by you, the Register will post the selections in the Tract Book, after the following manner:

"Selected road Co., act

[ocr errors]

186, by A. B., agent for the list No.

the tracts so selected "


;" and on the plats he will mark R. R."

After the selections are properly posted and marked on the plats, the lists will be transmitted to this office, accompanied by the evidence of the agent's appointment.

4th. The fees will be due in all cases where the service may have been rendered subsequent to the passage of said act of 1864. 5th. The Receiver will account for the fees thus paid in his monthly and quarterly accounts, specially setting forth in the same the particular case or cases on which such fees had accrued, giving the name of road, number and date of the list of selections for which they had been paid.

6th. By joint resolution No. 10 of January 30th, 1865, "mineral lands" are not embraced in the grants made at the 1st session of the 38th Congress, unless otherwise specially provided in the act or acts making the grants.


Acts approved July 1st, 1862, and July 2d, 1864.

th. By section 21 of the latter act, these companies are required to pay cost of "surveying, selecting, and conveying " the

lands, in addition to the Register and Receiver's fees exacted by the act of July 1st, 1864, before mentioned. This cost of surveying and conveying is, by the decision of the Secretary of the Interior of November 8th, 1866, limited to the lands granted by act July 2d, 1864. Therefore, the "cost" will be assessed and collected on the lands outside of ten miles and within twenty miles from the line of the road, where the grant is under both acts.

To ascertain the cost of "surveying," which includes both surveying in the field and office work, the company will apply to the Surveyor-General of the State or Territory in which the lands are situated. Upon ascertaining the sums due for surveying and office work for the "section or sections of road" for which selections have been or are to be made, a deposit of those sums must be made, to the credit of the Treasurer of the United States, with an authorized depositary. The duplicate of deposit must be filed with the Surveyor-General; whereupon he will transmit to the Register and Receiver of the proper land office his certificate of such payment having been made, specifying how much was for surveying and how much for office work, as per Form C.

The Surveyor-General's certificate, together with the triplicate certificate of deposit and the evidence of the agent's appointment, must accompany the lists of selection when transmitted by you to this office.

8th. Herewith is a form of title-page to be prefixed to the Lists of Selection.

Let me here call your special attention to the necessity of great care in the examination and testing of these lists, so that all conflicts may be avoided and improper selections be excluded, and that the verified schedules may be absolutely accurate, thus avoiding embarrassment and delay to all concerned.

9th. Pacific Railroad act, July 2d, 1864-It is provided in section 4 that the word "mineral," when it occurs in that act, shall not be held to include iron and coal. Therefore, iron and coal lands are subject to selection by the Pacific Railroads; but all other minerals are expressly excluded from the grant, and must necessarily be so from all selections you may certify to this office. When the verified lists are received at the General Land Office, prepared and certified as above required, such definite action as the law requires will be here taken, with the view to invest the grantee with a complete title.

These instructions will supersede those of May 30th, 1866, Circular No. 9. The forms attached hereto, which are made a part hereof, will be followed in certifying to maps and lists, where the same may be applicable.

« PreviousContinue »