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said land districts until such land shall have been examined and classified as nonmineral, as provided for in this act, and such patent or other evidence of title shall only issue then to such land, if any, in said land districts as said company may be, by law and compliance therewith and by the said classification, entitled to, and any patent, certificate, or record of selection, or other evidence of title or right to possession of any land in said land districts, issued, entered, or delivered to said Northern Pacific Railroad Co. in violation of the provisions of this act shall be void: Provided, That nothing contained in this act shall be taken or construed as recognizing or confirming any grant of land or the right to any land in the said Northern Pacific Railroad Co., or as waiving or in any wise affecting any right on the part of the United States against the said Northern Pacific Railroad Co. to claim a forfeiture of any land grant heretofore made to said company.

SEC. 8. That there is hereby appropriated, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, the sum of $20,000, or so much thereof as may be necessary, to be expended to carry into effect the provisions of this act, the same to be paid out upon the order of the Secretary of the Interior; and the Secretary of the Interior is hereby required to embrace in the annual estimates submitted to Congress for appropriations for the Interior Department a sufficient sum to pay the said commissioners for the fiscal year next ensuing, and annually thereafter until the classification of lands required by this act has been fully accomplished.

A. RAILROAD GRANT-MINERAL LANDS CLASSIFIED.

1. PURPOSE OF ACT-CLASSIFICATION OF MINERAL LANDS. 2. CLASSIFICATION OF RAILROAD LANDS WITHIN CERTAIN LIMITS. 3. ACT REFERS TO MINING LAWS IN FORCE AT TIME.

4. TRIBUNAL FOR DETERMINING CHARACTER OF LAND.

5. CLASSIFICATIONS-MATTERS CONSIDERED BY COMMISSIONERS. 6. LANDS CLASSIFIED AS MINERAL.

7. CLASSIFICATION-EFFECT AS TO MINERAL CHARACTER.

8. SELECTIONS OF CLASSIFIED LANDS CANCELED.

9. INDEMNITY SELECTIONS-LIMITS.

10. MINERAL LOCATIONS AND ENTRIES NOT SUSPENDED.
11. PROTEST AGAINST CLASSIFICATION-EFFECT-PRACTICE.
12. CLASSIFICATION-APPROVAL.

1. PURPOSE OF ACT

This act limits the right of the railroad company under its original grant, and the act of March 2, 1899 (30 Stat. 993), can not be so construed as to remove the limitation imposed by this classification act.

-CLASSIFICATION OF MINERAL LANDS.

Idaho v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 37 L. D. 135, p. 137.

The purpose of this act was to determine speedily and finally what lands within the limits of the original grant were excepted from its terms by reason of their mineral character.

Luthye v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 675, p. 677.

This statute was designed to separate the mineral lands from the nonmineral lands for the purpose of aiding a speedy adjustment of the Northern Pacific land grant and the classification, when made by the commissioners, was final as to the railroad company, yet it did not prevent such disposal of the lands as might be proper when a subsequent showing is made as to their character, the effect of a return by the mineral land commissioners being likened to a return of mineral lands made by a Government surveyor.

St. Paul, etc., R. Co., In re, 34 L. D. 211.

This act authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to cause all lands within certain specified districts in Montana and Idaho within the Northern Pacific land grant to be examined and classified by commissioners and the railroad company is afforded due and full opportunity to be heard in opposition to the mineral classification to be made by the commissioners; but any lands classified as mineral under the act are excluded from the operation of the grant to the railroad company, and any patent issued in violation of the provisions of the act is void.

Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Frei, 34 L. D. 661, p. 663.

Under section 7 mineral land commissioners were appointed to examine and classify the lands as to their mineral character.

Traphagen v. Kirk, 30 Mont. 562, p. 572.

2. CLASSIFICATION OF RAILROAD LANDS WITHIN CERTAIN LIMITS.

This act limited the classification of lands in Idaho to the lands within the Coeur d'Alene land district and the railroad company in leasing or selecting these lands is required to give notice as to such other lands as are within 6 miles of the mining claim.

Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 31 L. D. 394, p. 395.

The classification of lands not within the limits of the Northern Pacific land grant is unauthorized and can not be held as affecting the character of the land whether they were returned as mineral at the time of the survey or not.

Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Mann, 33 L. D. 621, p. 622.
See Idaho v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 37 L. D. 135, p. 136.

A classification of the even-numbered sections within the specified territory was not authorized under this act, and as the returns made at the time of actual Government survey showed the tracts to be nonmineral, an objection that the company's selection was based upon the mineral classification of lands, is not well taken.

Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Idaho, 37 L. D. 68, p. 69.

3. ACT REFERS TO MINING LAWS IN FORCE AT TIME.

This statute must be understood as referring to the United States mining laws in force at the time of its enactment, including the act of August 4, 1892 (27 Stat. 348), by which lands that are chiefly valuable for building stone were made subject to entry under the placer mineral land sections.

Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Soderberg, 99 Fed. 506, p. 508.
Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Soderberg, 104 Fed. 425, p. 428.

4. TRIBUNAL FOR DETERMINING CHARACTER OF LAND.

The fact that this act creates a special tribunal to determine the character of land within the Northern Pacific Railroad grant, with respect to their mineral or nonmineral character, does not directly or by implication suspend the action of the Land Department in this respect; nor does it suspend mineral locations or entries.

Sweeney v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 21 L. D. 65.

See Sweeney v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 20 L. D. 394.

The Secretary of the Interior construed this act as intended to facilitate the adjustment of the grant of land to the Northern Pacific Railroad Co. by enabling him to ascertain without delay what lands within the limits of the grant in the States of Montana and Idaho were mineral in character and excepted from the operation of the grant, and the Secretary determined that the classification of land as mineral did not prevent the Land Department from making such disposition of the land as would be proper upon a subsequent showing that the land was not in fact mineral.

Lynch v. United States, 138 Fed. 535, p. 543.

See Instructions, In re, 25 L. D. 446; 26 L. D. 423, p. 424.

This act approves the mode of determining what is mineral land and authorizes commissioners to be appointed to determine the mineral character of lands from the adjacent lands and their mineral character and geological formation, and the reasonable probability of such lands containing valuable mineral deposits, and these may be taken as criterions for determining as to the lands upon which license is given to cut trees or timber under other acts of Congress.

United States v. Mullan Fuel Co., 118 Fed. 663, p. 666.

5. CLASSIFICATIONS-MATTERS CONSIDERED BY COMMISSIONERS.

The question to be determined under this section is whether by observing the tests herein prescribed the evidence shows that it is reasonably probable that the land in controversy contains valuable mineral deposits, then it should be so classified and the language here used is in harmony with section 2319 of the Revised Statutes.

Holter v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 442, p. 447.

Where the evidence shows, taking into account the mineral discovered or developed on or adjacent to the land involved and the geological formation of the land and lands adjacent thereto, that there is a reasonable probability that the land contains valuable mineral deposits, then such lands must be held to be mineral and classified accordingly under this section.

Holter v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 442, p. 447.

The commissioners are by this section directed to take into consideration the mineral discovered or developed on, or adjacent to the land, as well as the geological formation of all lands to be examined and classified, and they are not to give them or any of them unusual conclusive effects.

Holter v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 442, p. 448.

The question in determining the classification is whether the land is shown to contain mineral in sufficient quantity and of such value as to justify a person of ordinary prudence in the further expenditure of his labor and means in an effort to extract such mineral, with a reasonable prospect of success in developing a paying mine. Holter v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 442, p. 449.

6. LANDS CLASSIFIED AS MINERAL.

By this statute all lands shall be classified as mineral which by reason of valuable mineral deposits are open to exploration and purchase under the United States mining laws; but the word "mineral" as used in this act does not include coal and iron, and it is clear that Congress used the term "mineral lands" as the equivalent of the terms "lands valuable for minerals" and "all valuable mineral deposits" as used in the mining statutes.

Pacific Coast Marble Co. v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 25 L. D. 233, p. 246.
Overruling Tucker v. Florida R., etc., Co., 19 L. D. 414.

See Florida Central & Peninsular R. Co., In re 26 L. D. 600, p. 601.

Under this section land shall be classified as mineral which by reason of valuable mineral deposits make them open to exploitation, occupation, and purchase under the provisions of the United States mining laws.

Morrill v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 475, p. 477.

Lands containing valuable deposits of limestone which are more valuable for such limestone than for agricultural purposes are properly classified as mineral under this act.

Morrill v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 30 L. D. 475, p. 439.

The classification of lands containing valuable deposits of fire clay by the commissioners under this statute as nonmineral is not justified where it appears that such lands are wholly unfit for agricultural purposes.

Alldritt v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 25 L. D. 349, p. 351.

The fact that land applied for as coal land lies in what is known as the Colorado coal field, including about 2,500 square miles, but in which there is probably not more than 100 square miles valuable for coal, and the further fact that there are valuable coal deposits in the vicinity of such lands does not prove such lands to be coal lands within the meaning of this act.

Warren v. Colorado, 14 L. D. 681, p. 684.

The commissioners appointed under this act have no authority to classify land as nonmineral for which certificates of placer location have been duly filed in the office of the clerk and recorder of the proper county, and where it is shown that the land is more valuable for mining than for agricultural purposes.

Baudette v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 248, p. 249.

7. CLASSIFICATION-EFFECT AS TO MINERAL CHARACTER.

The classification contemplated in this act was to be with special reference to the mineral or nonmineral character of such land and was for the purpose of adjusting the claim of the Northern Pacific Railroad Co. land grant, and in the absence of a protest and when approved by the Secretary of the Interior such classification became final and the tract classified as mineral was excepted from the grant to such railroad company.

Lynch v. United States, 138 Fed. 535, p. 541.

After the selection and classification by the commissioners under this act neither the railroad company nor third persons can question the mineral character of the lands so classified.

Lamb v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 102, p. 105.
Luthye v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 675, p. 677.

The classification made under this act may be considered as a matter of evidence the same as any other material fact bearing upon the character of the land, and the return of nonmineral public lands as required by the act of March 2, 1899 (30 Stat. 993), was not intended to be accepted as conclusive.

Idaho v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 37 L. D. 135, p. 139.

8. SELECTIONS OF CLASSIFIED LANDS CANCELED.

A selection or filing by the railroad company either before or after the act would be immaterial, as all selections and filings upon all lands classified by the commission under the act were canceled.

Luthye v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 675, p. 677.

The Land Department has the right to take such further steps as may seem needful to protect the interests of the United States in lands classified under this act. Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 33 L. D. 601, p. 604. See Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 32 L. D. 611.

9. INDEMNITY SELECTIONS-LIMITS.

The indemnity selection for lost mineral lands may be made within 50 miles of the line of the railroad, as provided in section 3 of the act of July 2, 1864 (13 Stat. 365). Northern Pac. Land Grant, In re, 41 L. D. 571, p. 574.

Northern Pac. Land Grant, In re, 41 L. D. 576.

See Northern Pac. R. Co., 8 L. D. 13, p. 14.

10. MINERAL LOCATIONS AND ENTRIES NOT SUSPENDED.

This act does not suspend mineral locations made prior to its passage, nor pending the approval by the Secretary of the Interior of the classification made by the commissioners does it apply to cases where, prior to the approval of the classification, claimants under the mining laws have prima facie established the mineral character of the land, and their claims have passed to entry.

Northern Pac. R. Co. v. Ledoux, 32 L. D. 24, p. 25.
See Sweeney v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 21 L. D. 65.

11. PROTEST AGAINST CLASSIFICATION-EFFECT-PRACTICE.

Where land has been classified as mineral under this act and protests are filed alleging it to be nonmineral, service of notice by publication at the expense of the protestant must be had.

Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 32 L. D. 611, p. 614.

On a protest against a mineral classification by this act, notice must be posted in a newspaper nearest the land, and an abuse of the discretion vested in the register in this respect will entitle a protestant to a new hearing.

Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 32 L. D. 611, p. 614.
See Northern Pac. R. Co., In re, 33 L. D. 74.

Where a protest by an agricultural claimant against the existing mining location is shown to be false and the character of the land clearly misrepresented, the land may be taken as prima facie mineral and should be so classified by the commission, unless upon personal inspection or by satisfactory evidence the presumption is overcome. Lamb v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 102, p. 104.

A protest against an entry under this grant, not filed until after the prescribed time, must make such a showing of fraud in the classification as will condemn and avoid it if sustained by proof before an order will be made for a hearing.

Lamb v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 29 L. D. 102, p. 104.

Where a classification of lands under this act has been approved, a hearing will not be ordered by the Land Department on a mere statement in a protest that the lands are mineral in character where these has been no demonstration of their substantial mineral value or exploitation of any consequence from which actual or constructive fraud in the classification could be inferred, and to order a hearing under such circumstances would be to deny to the classification a weight contemplated by statute which provides that the finality of such classification can be impeached on the ground of fraud only.

Beveridge v. Northern Pac. R. Co., 36 L. D. 40.

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