« SebelumnyaLanjutkan »
party or parties, plaintiff, and the United States party defendant. The petition shall be verified by the attorney or attorneys employed to prosecute such claim or claims under contract with the said Indians approved in accordance with existing laws and said contract shall be executed in their behalf by a committee or committees selected by said Indians or provided by existing law. Official letters, papers, documents and records, maps, or certified copies thereof may be used in evidence, and the departments of the Government shall give access to the attorney or attorneys of said Indians to such treaties, papers, maps, correspondence, or reports as they may require in the preparation and prosecution of any suit or suits instituted under this act.
SEC. 3. In said suit or suits the court shall also hear, examine, consider, and adjudicate any claims which the United States may have against the said Indian tribes or any of them, but any payment or payments which have been made by the United States upon any such claim or claims shall not operate as an estoppel, but may be pleaded as an offset in such suit or suits, and the United States shall be allowed to plead and shall be given credit for all sums, including gratuities, paid to or expended for the benefit of any of said nations, tribes, and classes of Indians.
SEC. 4. Any other tribes or bands of Indians the court may deem necessary to a final determination of any suit or suits brought hereunder may be joined therein as the court may order: Provided, That upon final determination of such suit or suits the Court of Claims shall have jurisdiction to fix and determine a reasonable fee, not to exceed 10 per centum of recovery or recoveries, together with all necessary and proper expenses incurred in the preparation and prosecu tion of such suit or suits to be paid to the attorney or attorneys employed as herein provided by the said Indians, and the same shall be included in the decree, and shall be paid out of any sum or sums adjudged to be due said Indians, or any of them, and the balance of such sum or sums shall be placed in the Treasury of the United States, where it shell draw interest at the rate of 4 per centum per annum, and be disposed of as provided by existing law.
Amend the title so as to read:
A bill to confer jurisdiction on the Court of Claims to hear and determine certain claims of the Eastern or Emigrant and the Western or Old Settler Cherokee Indians against the United States, and for other purposes.
Your committee struck out all after the enacting clause and have substituted the foregoing for the purpose of meeting the adverse report from the department and we believe the present bill overcomes their objections.
The purpose of this legislation is to give to the classes of Indians named therein the right to sue on causes of action concerning which the tribe as a whole could not raise and adjudicate for the reason that such matters do not concern the Cherokee Tribe. Certain causes of action affect only the Western Cherokees and in these the Eastern Cherokees or the Cherokee Tribe would have no interest. This is also true of the Eastern Cherokees and it is doubtful that the causes of action that exist in favor of these classes of Indians would be a proper subject matter to entitle them to intervene under the provisions authorizing intervention as contained in the jurisdictional act of May 19, 1924.
The report of the Secretary of the Interior on H. R. 16858, the identical House bill, together with a letter from the Cherokee delegation indorsing this measure, are appended hereto and made a part of this report.
Hon. SCOTT LEAVITT,
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Chairman Committee on Indian Affairs,
House of Representatives.
MY DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: In compliance with your request of February 11, for a report on H. R. 16858, which is a bill that would “confer jurisdiction on the
Court of Claims to hear and determine certain claims of the Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma and North Carolina, I transmit herewith a memorandum on the subject that has been submitted by Commissioner Rhoads of the Office of Indian Affairs.
After a review of the proposed measure, I agree with Mr. Rhoads.
RAY LYMAN WILBUR, Secretary.
DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR,
Reference is made herein to H. R. 16858, entitled "A bill to confer jurisdiction on the Court of Claims to hear and determine certain claims of the Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma and North Carolina, and to the request of February 11, 1931, of Hon. Scott Leavitt, chairman of the Committee on Indian Affairs, House of Representatives, for your report thereon for the benefit of the committee.
The bill has for its purpose the conferring of jurisdiction upon the Court of Claims, notwithstanding the lapse of time or statutes of limitation, to hear, examine, and adjudicate, and render judgment in any and all legal and equitable claims arising under or growing out of any treaty or agreement between the United States and "The Cherokee Indians, band or tribe," or arising under or growing out of any act of Congress in relation to Indian Affairs, which said Cherokee Indians, band or tribe, may have against the United States.
Section 1 of the bill is not altogether clear, but it is presumed that it refers to such interest as the "Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians" and "The Eastern Band of North Carolina Cherokee Indians" may have in claims of the Cherokee Nation or any band thereof, against the United States. Section 2 of the bill provides that "The Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians as a corporation shall file any suit or suits or claims on behalf of the Cherokee Indians by blood, which claims have not heretofore been determined and adjudicated on their merit by the Court of Claims or the Supreme Court of the United States." This would undoubtedly include the claims of individual Indians. The bill does not state what the claims are.
From papers on file in the Indian Office relating to the claim of the "Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians" it is presumed that the bill has relation to the claims of said Indians to compensation for tribal lands allotted to freedmen and intermarried white members of the Cherokee Indian Nation, Oklahoma, and by reason of the shares of tribal funds distributed to such freedmen and intermarried white members of that nation. Article 2 of the treaty of December 29, 1835, of the United States with the Cherokee Nation (7 Stat. L. 478), related to the cession of certain described land to the Cherokee Nation. Under article 3 of the treaty a patent was issued on December 31, 1838, by the President of the United States to the Cherokee Nation, covering the lands ceded to said Cherokee Indian Nation.
The eastern band of North Carolina Cherokee Indians are not members of the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma, and have no rights or interests in the tribal property of the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma, nor in the claims of said Indian nation against the United States. In this connection reference is herein made to the decision of March 1, 1886, of the Supreme Court of the United States in the case of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians v. The United States and the Cherokee Nation (117 U. S. 288). The "Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians," unless enrolled members on the final rolls of the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma, have no right or interest in the Cherokee national property or claims. The Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians who are enrolled on the final rolls of the Cherokee Nation as members entitled to share in the tribal property have no interest distinct or separate from other members of the Cherokee Nation in the tribal lands and claims. By act of Congress approved March 19, 1924 (43 Stat. L. 27), as modified by joint resolution of May 19, 1926 (44 Stat. L. 568), the Court of Claims was given jurisdiction to hear, determine, adjudicate, and enter judgment in any claims which the Cherokee Indian Nation, Oklahoma, might have against the United States under any treaty of the United States with the Cherokee Nation or under any act of Congress relating to Indian affairs which had not theretofore been adjudicated by the Court of Claims or the Supreme Court of the United States.
By joint resolution of Congress approved February 19, 1929 (45 Stat. L. 1229), the time allowed the Cherokee Nation to file its suits or claims against the United
States was extended to June 30, 1930. The attorneys employed by the Chreokee Nation under the above-mentioned jurisdictional act of March 19, 1924, have prepared and instituted in the Court of Claims a number of suits against the United States covering a large number of the tribal claims against the Government, which suits are now pending in said court.
The corporation described in section 2 of the bill as "The Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians," is not representative of the Cherokee Nation, Oklahoma, and has no authority to appear for or in its behalf in the matter of the claims of the Cherokee Nation against the United States. If the Eastern Emmigrant and Western Cherokee Indians or the Eastern Band of North Carolina Cherokee Indians or any other band or group of the Cherokee Indians have or believe they have any separate or distinct interests in the matters involved in the claims or suits of the Cherokee Nation against the United States in the Court of Claims, said bands or groups may, under existing law (act of March 19, 1924), intervene in said litigation for the protection of any rights they may have in the matters involved.
In view of the above, the enactment of H. R. 16858 is not recommended. C. J. RHOADS, Commissioner.
WASHINGTON, D. C., February 20, 1931.
Hon. WILLIAM WILLIAMSON,
Chairman Subcommittee, Committee on Indian Affairs, House of Representatives, Washington, D. C. Mr. CHAIRMAN: The undersigned Cherokee delegation respectfully submit hereto attached the proposed amendment to S. 5979, which it is believed will meet the objections to the legislation by the Secretary of the Interior and Commissioner of Indian Affairs.
We have eliminated any reference to the North Carolina band of Cherokee Indians. While we have reason to believe that the North Carolina Cherokee Indians may have, or claim to have, an interest in at least one of the claims we expect to litigate under authority of this proposed bill if enacted into law, we do not have any authority to speak for them, and it is believed that they may protect themselves otherwise.
The real object of this bill is to give the Cherokee Indians by blood as such their day n court. The Cherokee Nation, now party plaintiff in numerous suits pending in the Court of Claims under authority of the act of March 19, 1924, while it embraced in its membership the Cherokees by blood, it also included several thousand persons who were not, and are not, Cherokees, and who, under old treaties entered into, prior to the time such nonblood members were incorporated into the Cherokee Nation, will not be entitled to share in the proceeds of certain funds which will be the subject matter of our suits.
We have also eliminated that part of S. 5979 which proposed to authorize the "Eastern Emmigrant and the Western Cherokee Indians as a corporation" to file suits under the proposed legislation.
We have also provided in the proposed amendment submitted, that the Indians described shall file their suits as classes and not as individuals.
We note at the end of Commissioner Rhoads's memorandum that he says "said bands or groups may under existing law (act of March 19, 1924), intervene in said litigation for the protection of any rights they may have in the matters involved." While this may be true, we are advised that it is not at all certain that the rights of the Cherokee by blood can be fully and adequately protected by such procedure. We have provided in the suggested amendment that the time within which any original or intervening petition may be filed shall be two years instead of five.
We earnestly trust that your subcommittee will decide to report this amendment as a substitute for S. 5979, and recommend its enactment into law. The laudable object of these jurisdictional bills is to afford the Indians a final opportunity, the very last one, to have their day in court, a final and complete settlement by judicial arbitrament of all possible claims which they may have against the Government, and under the authority of these two laws, the act of March 19. 1924, and this one, if it shall be enacted, that object will be fully attained.
BRIDGE ACROSS MISSOURI RIVER AT OR NEAR ARROW
FEBRUARY 25, 1931.-Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be printed
Mr. MILLIGAN, from the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, submitted the following
[To accompany H. R. 17243]
The Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, to whom was referred the bill (H. R. 17243), to extend the times for commencing and completing the construction of a bridge across the Missouri River at or near Arrow Rock, Mo., having considered and amended the same, report thereon with a recommendation that it pass.
Amend the bill as follows:
Line 10, strike out the words "the date of approval hereof" and insert the date "March 2, 1931" in lieu thereof.
The bill has the approval of the War and Agriculture Departments as will appear by the letters attached.
WAR DEPARTMENT, February 25, 1931. Respectfully returned to the chairman Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce, House of Representatives.
So far as the interests committed to this department are concerned, I know of no objection to the favorable consideration of the accompanying bill (H. R. 17243, 71st Cong., 3d sess.), to extend the times for commencing and completing the construction of a bridge across the Missouri River at or near Arrow Rock, Mo. PATRICK J. HURLEY, Secretary of War.
Hon. JAMES S. PARKER,
Chairman Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce,
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE,
House of Representatives.
DEAR MR. PARKER: Careful consideration has been given to the bill H. R. 17243, transmitted with your letter of February 24, with request for a report thereon and such views relative thereto as the department might desire to communicate.
This bill would extend for one and three years, respectively, from the date of its approval, the times for commencing and completing the construction of the bridge across the Missouri River at or near Arrow Rock, Mo., authorized by act approved March 2, 1929, to be built by the St. Louis-Kansas City Short Line Railroad Co. The bill relates to a railroad bridge and is without objection so far as this department is concerned.
R. W. DUNLAP, Acting Secretary.
The act of Congress approved March 2, 1929, is as follows: [PUBLIC NO. 957-70TH CONGRESS]
AN ACT Authorizing the construction of a bridge across the Missouri River near Arrow Rock, Missouri
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the consent of Congress is hereby granted to the Saint Louis-Kansas City Short Line Railroad Company, a corporation of the State of Missouri, and their successors and assigns, to construct, maintain, and operate a bridge and approaches thereto across the Missouri River, at a point suitable to the interests of navigation, at or near the town of Arrow Rock, in the State of Missouri, in accordance with the provisions of the act entitled "An act to regulate the construction of bridges over navigable waters," approved March 23, 1906.
SEC. 2. That the right to alter, amend, or repeal this act is hereby expressly reserved.
Approved March 2, 1929.