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That as soon as practicable, after the completion of said allotments, the principal chief of the Choctaw Nation and the governor of the Chickasaw Nation shall jointly execute, under their hands and the seals of the respective nations, and deliver to each of the said allottees patents conveying to him all the right, title, and interest of the Choctaws and Chickasaws in and to the land which shall have been allotted to him in conformity with the requirements of this agreement, excepting all coal and asphalt in or under said land. Said patents shall be framed in accordance with the provisions of this agreement, * * * and as a relinquishment of all his right, title, and interest in and to any and all parts thereof, except the land embraced in said patents, except also his interest in the proceeds of all lands, coal, and asphalt herein excepted from allotment.
It is agreed that all the coal and asphalt within the limits of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Nations shall remain and be the common property of the members of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Tribes (freedmen excepted), so that each and every member shall have an equal and undivided interest in the whole; and no patent provided for in this agreement shall convey any title thereto. The revenues from coal and asphalt, or so much as shall be necessary, shall be used for the education of the children of Indian blood of the members of said tribes. Such coal and asphalt mines as are now in operation, and all others which may hereafter be leased and operated, shall be under the supervision and control of two trustees, who shall be appointed by the President of the United States, one on the recommendation of the principal chief of the Choctaw Nation, who shall be a Choctaw by blood, whose term shall be for four years, and one on the recommendation of the governor of the Chickasaw Nation, who shall be a Chickasaw by blood, whose term shall be for two years; after which the term of appointees shall be four years. * * All coal and asphalt mines in the two nations, whether now developed, or to be hereafter developed, shall be operated, and the royalties therefrom paid into the Treasury of the United States, and shall be drawn therefrom under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior.
All contracts made by the national agents of the Choctow and Chickasaw Nations for operating coal and asphalt, with any person or corporation, which were, on April 23, 1897, being operated in good faith are hereby ratified and confirmed, and the lessees shall have the right to renew the same when they expire, subject to all the provisions of this act.
All agreements heretofore made by any person or corporation with any member or members of the Choctaw or Chickasaw Nations, the object of which was to obtain such member or members' permission to operate coal or asphalt, are hereby declared void: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall impair the rights of any holder or owner of a leasehold interest in any oil, coal rights, asphalt, or mineral which have been assented to by act of Congress, but all such interests shall continue unimpaired hereby and shall be assured by new leases from such trustees of coal or asphalt claims described therein, by application to the trustees within six months after the ratification of this agreement, subject, however, to payment of advance royalties herein provided for.
All leases under this agreement shall include the coal or asphaltum, or other mineral, as the case may be, in or under 960 acres, which shall be in a square as nearly as possible, and shall be for 30 years. The royalty on coal shall be 15 cents per ton of 2000 pounds on all coal mined, payable on the 25th day of the month next succeeding that in which it is mined. Royalty on asphalt shall be 60 cents per ton, payable same as coal: Provided, That the Secretary of the Interior may reduce or advance royalties on coal and asphalt when he deems it for the best interests of the Choctaws and Chickasaws to do so. No royalties shall be paid except into the United States Treasury as herein provided.
All lessees shall pay on each coal or asphalt claim at the rate of $100 per annum, in advance, for the first and second years; $200 in advance for the third and fourth years; and $500 for each succeeding year thereafter. All such payments shall be treated as advanced royalty on the mine or claim on which they are made, and shall be a credit as royalty when each said mine is developed and operated, and its production is in excess of such guaranteed annual advance payments, and all persons having coal leases must pay said annual advanced payments on each claim whether developed or undeveloped: Provided, however, That should any lessee neglect or refuse to pay such advanced annual royalty for the period of 60 days after the same becomes due and payable on any lease, the lease on which default is made shall become null and void, and the royalties paid in advance thereon shall then become and be the money and property of the Choctow and Chickasaw Nations.
In surface, the use of which is reserved to present coal operators, shall be included such lots in towns as are occupied by lessees' houses, either occupied by said lessees' employees, or as offices or warehouses: Provided, however, That in those town sites designated and laid out under the provision of this agreement where coal leases are now being operated and coal is being mined, there shall be reserved from appraisement and sale all lots occupied by houses of miners actually engaged in mining, and only while they are so engaged, and in addition thereto a sufficient amount of land, to be determined by the town-site board of appraisers, to furnish homes for the men actually engaged in working for the lessees operating said mines, and a sufficient amount for all buildings and machinery for mining purposes: And provided further, That when the lessees shall cease to operate said mines, then and in that event the lots of land so reserved shall be disposed of by the coal trustees for the benefit of the Choctaw
and Chickasaw Tribes.
That whenever the members of the Choctaw and Chickasaw Tribes shall be required to pay taxes for the support of schools, then the fund arising from such royalties shall be disposed of for the equal benefit of their members (freedmen excepted) in such manner as the tribes may direct.
It is further agreed that the United States courts now existing, or that may hereafter be created, in the Indian Territory shall have exclusive jurisdiction of all controversies growing out of the titles, ownership, occupation, possession, or use of real estate, coal, and asphalt in the territory occupied by the Choctaw and Chickasaw Tribes; and of all persons charged with homicide, embezzlement, bribery, and embracery, breaches, or disturbances of the peace, and
carrying weapons, hereafter committed in the territory of said tribes, without reference to race or citizenship of the person or persons charged with such crime; and any citizen or officer of the Choctaw or Chickasaw Nations charged with such crime shall be tried, and, if convicted, punished as though he were a citizen or officer of the United States.
A. INDIAN LANDS-LEASING BY ALLOTTEES.
1. LEASING TO WHITE PERSONS RECOGNIZED.
2. STATUTE OPERATES PROSPECTIVELY ONLY.
3. MINERALS RESERVED TO TRIBES.
4. SECRETARY'S EXCLUSIVE POWER OVER MINERALS.
5. ROYALTIES UNLAWFUL UNLESS MADE OR PAID AS PROVIDED. 6. MINING LEASES.
a. AUTHORIZED UNDER REGULATIONS.
b. DILIGENCE IN DEVELOPMENT IMPLIED.
c. ACREAGE AND TERM.
1. LEASING TO WHITE PERSONS RECOGNIZED.
These provisions presuppose the fact that it was very common for the Chickasaw Nation of Indians to make charters for mining coal and other minerals in the Indian Territory, to white persons, and the Chickasaw statute does not in terms forbid leasing mineral lands to white persons.
McBride v. Farrington, 131 Fed. 797, p. 802.
2. STATUTE OPERATES PROSPECTIVELY ONLY.
This act does not operate to deprive the lessors of coal mines in the Choctaw Nation of the royalties due them for coal mined under valid leases prior to the enactment of the statute.
Southwestern Coal Co. v. McBride, 185 U. S. 499, p. 502.
Section 16 is not retrospective in its operation upon royalties already earned, and does not in terms or by implication affect royalties due under existing leases, though it prohibits the making of such leases and prohibits the payment of royalties under existing leases which may be earned and accrue after the passage of the act.
Atoka Coal & Min. Co. v. Adams, 104 Fed. 472, p. 473.
The provisions of section 18 of this act do not operate retrospectively, but prospectively only.
Southwestern Coal Co. v. McBride, 185 U. S. 499, p. 503.
3. MINERALS RESERVED TO TRIBES.
The allotment of lands to individual members of the Cherokee Tribes of Indians, expressly reserves to each tribe all oil, coal, asphalt, and mineral deposits in the lands so allotted, and no such allotment shall carry or transfer title to any such oil, coal, asphalt, or minerals deposits.
Cherokee Nation v. Hitchcock, 187 U. S. 294,
4. SECRETARY'S EXCLUSIVE POWER OVER MINERALS. Section 13 of this act gives the Secretary of the Interior exclusive powers over the oil, coal, asphalt, and other minerals and authorizes him to make leases for such oil, coal, asphalt, or other minerals, under certain conditions.
Cherokee Nation v. Hitchcock, 187 U. S. 294, p. 303.
In an action by the Cherokee Nation against the Secretary of the Interior to enjoin him from making illegal leases of oil, coal, asphaltum, or other minerals, under the supposed authority of this section, the persons to whom such leases are made, or are proposed to be made, are not necessary parties to the bill.
Cherokee Nation v. Hitchcock, 187 U. S. 294, p. 300.
5. ROYALTIES UNLAWFUL UNLESS MADE OR PAID AS PROVIDED. Section 16 of this act makes it unlawful for any person hereafter, except as provided, to claim, demand, or receive any royalty on oil, coal, asphalt, or other mineral belonging to any one of the tribes in the Indian Territory.
Cherokee Nation v. Hitchcock, 187 U. S. 294, p. 304.
By this section it is made unlawful for any person to pay royalties or rents on any mineral or timber lands to the Chickasaw Nation or its citizens except such payment be made pursuant to rules and regulations prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior. McBride v. Farrington, 131 Fed. 797, p. 802.
6. MINING LEASES.
a. AUTHORIZED Under REGULATIONS.
Pursuant to the terms of this act, the Secretary of the Interior promulgated certain rules and regulations relative to coal and asphalt leases and the operation of mines thereunder, and fixing the royalties to be paid, and required the payment of advanced royalties.
United States v. McMurray, 181 Fed. 723, p. 726.
b. DILIGENCE IN DEVELOPMENT IMPLIED.
While a lease may make no provision as to the diligence the lessee shall exercise in development, yet it may be assumed that Congress in granting the authority to the mining trustees to make leases contemplated that one of the terms thereof should be the requirement of due diligence in development, and a lessee can not excuse an unconscionable delay by relying upon the fact that he had paid the advanced royalties provided by the act, and the question as to due diligence is to be determined by the courts.
United States v. McMurray, 181 Fed. 723, p. 728.
C. ACREAGE AND TERM.
Leases under this act shall each contain 960 acres in as nearly a square form as possible, and shall extend for a period of 30 years, and the royalty shall be 15 cents per ton, payable on a certain fixed date, and the lessee must pay $100 the first and second years, $200 for the third and fourth years, and $500 for each succeeding year, and these payments are to be credited upon the royalties subsequently due; and the Secretary of the Interior is not authorized to change or modify by rules and regulations any of the provisions of the act, except the royalties per ton, which he may change under stated conditions, and he can not arbitrarily determine by a regulation what shall constitute reasonable diligence in the development of the leased premises, and declare a lease forfeited for failure to develop the premises according to such arbitrary determination.
United States v. McMurray, 181 Fed. 723, pp. 728, 730.
31 STAT. 848, p. 861, MARCH 1, 1901.
COAL AND OIL RIGHTS.
AN ACT To ratify and confirm an agreement with the Cherokee Tribe of Indians.
Be it enacted, etc.,
* * *
SEC. 79. That nothing in this act contained shall be held or construed to change, alter, modify, or impair any existing coal or oil rights heretofore acquired by lease, location, development, or otherwise, or to ratify, confirm, recognize, or validate any such right.
32 STAT. 245, pp. 263, 266, MAY 27, 1902.
MINING LEASES PROTECTED.
AN ACT Making appropriations for the current and contingent expenses of the Indian Department and for fulfilling treaty stipulations with various Indian tribes for the fiscal year ending June 30, 1903, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted, etc., *
That the Secretary of the Interior, with the consent thereto of the majority of the adult male Indians of the Uintah and the White River Tribes of Ute Indians, to be ascertained as soon as practicable by an inspector, shall cause to be allotted to each head of a family 80 acres of agricultural land which can be irrigated and 40 acres of such land to each other member of said tribes, said allotments to be made prior to October 1, 1903, on which date all the unallotted lands within said reservation shall be restored to the public domain: Provided, That persons entering any of said land under the homestead law shall pay therefor at the rate of $1.25 per acre: And provided further, That nothing herein contained shall impair the rights of any mineral lease which has been approved by the Secretary of the Interior, or any permit heretofore issued by direction of the Secretary of the Interior to negotiate with said Indians for a mineral lease; but any person or company having so obtained such approved mineral lease or such permit to negotiate with said Indians for a mineral lease on said reservation, pending such time and up to 30 days before said lands are restored to the public domain as aforesaid, shall have in lieu of such lease or permit the preferential right to locate under the mining laws not to exceed 640 acres of contiguous mineral land, except the Raven Mining Co., which may in lieu of its lease locate 100 mining claims of the character of mineral mentioned in its lease; and the proceeds of the sale of the lands so restored to the public domain shall be applied, first, to the reimbursement of the United States for any moneys advanced to said Indians to carry into effect the foregoing provisions; and the remainder, under the direction of the Secretary of the Interior, shall be used for the benefit of said Indians.
That the mineral lands only in the Spokane Indian Reservation, in the State of Washington, shall be subject to entry under the laws of the United States in relation to the entry of mineral lands: Provided, That lands allotted to the Indians or used by the Government for any purpose or by any school shall not be subject to entry under this provision.