Full Text of the OA

AN ACT making appropriations for sundry civil expenses of the Government for the fiscal year ending June thirtieth, eighteen hundred and ninety-eight, and for other purposes.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the following sums be, and the same are hereby,
appropriated, for the object hereinafter expressed, for the fiscal year ending June thirtieth, eighteen hundred and ninety-eight, namely:

For the survey of the public lands that have been or may hereafter be designated as forest reserves by Executive proclamation, under section twenty-four of the Act of Congress approved March third, eighteen hundred and ninety-one, entitled “An act to repeal timber-culture laws, and for other purposes,” and including public lands adjacent thereto, which may be designated for survey by the Secretary of the Interior, one hundred and fifty thousand dollars, to be immediately available: Provided, That to remove any doubt which may exist pertaining to the authority of the President thereunto, the President of the United States is hereby authorized and empowered to revoke, modify, or suspend any and all such Executive orders and proclamations, or any part thereof, from time to time as he shall deem best for the public interests: Provided, That the Executive orders and proclamations dated February twenty- second, eighteen hundred and ninety-seven, setting apart and reserving certain public lands in the States of Wyoming, Utah, Montana, Washington, Idaho, and South Dakota as forest reservations, be, and they are hereby, suspended, and the lands embraced therein restored to the public domain the same as though said orders and proclamations had not been issued: Provided further, That lands embraced in such reservations not otherwise disposed of before March first, eighteen hundred and ninety-eight, shall again become subject to the operations of said orders and proclamations as now existing or hereafter modified by the President.

The surveys herein provided for shall be made, under the supervision of the Director of the Geological Survey, by such person of persons as may be employed by or under him for that purpose, and shall be executed under instructions issued by the Secretary of the Interior; and if subdivision surveys shall be found to be necessary, they shall be executed under the rectangular system, as now provided by law. The plats and field notes prepared shall be approved and certified to by the Director of the Geological Survey, and two copies of the field notes shall be returned, one for the files in the United States surveyor general’s office of the State in which the reserve is situated, the other in the General Land Office; and twenty photo lithographic copies of the plats shall be returned, one copy for the files in the United States surveyor-general’s office of the State in which the reserve is situated; the original plat and the other copies shall be filed in the General Land Office, and shall have the facsimile signature of the Director of the Survey attached.

Such surveys, filed notes, and plats thus returned shall have the same legal force and effect as heretofore given the surveys, field notes, and plats returned through the surveyors-general; and such surveys, which include subdivision surveys under the rectangular system, shall be approved by the Commissioner of the General Land Office as in other cases, and properly certified copies thereof shall be held in the respective land offices of the district in which such lands are situated, as in other cases. All laws inconsistent with the provisions hereof are hereby declared inoperative as respects such survey: Provided, however, That a copy of every topographic map and other maps showing the distribution of the forests, together with such field notes as may be taken
relating thereto, shell be certified thereto by the Director of the Survey and filed in the General Land Office.

All public lands heretofore designated and reserved by the President of the United States under the provisions of the Act approved March third, eighteen hundred and ninety-one, the orders for which shall be and remains in full force and effect, unsuspended and unrevoked, and all public lands that may hereafter be set aside as public forest reserves under said act, shall be as far as practicable controlled and administered in accordance with the following provisions: No public forest reservation shall be established, except to improve and protect the forest within the reservation, or for the purpose of securing favorable conditions of water flows, and to furnish a continuous supply of timber for the use and necessities of citizens of the United States; but it is not the purpose or intent of these provisions, or of the Act providing for such reservations, to authorize the inclusion therein of lands more valuable for the mineral therein, or for agricultural purposes, than for forest purposes.

The Secretary of the Interior shall make provisions for the protection against destruction by fire and depredations upon the public forests and forest reservations which may have
been set aside or which may be hereafter set aside under said Act of March third, eighteen hundred and ninety-one, and which may be continued; and he may make such rules and regulations and establish such service as will insure the objects of such reservations, namely, to regulate their occupancy and use and to preserve the forests there on from destruction; and any violation of the provisions of this Act or such rules and regulations shall be punished as is provided for in the Act of June fourth, eighteen hundred and eighty-eight of the Revised Statutes of the United States.

For the purpose of preserving the living and growing timber and promoting the younger growth on forest reservations, the Secretary of the Interior, under such rules and regulations as he shall prescribe, may cause to be designated and appraised so much of the dead, matured, or large growth of trees found upon such forest reservations as may be compatible with the utilization of the forests thereon, and may sell the same for not less than the appraised value in such quantities to each purchaser as he shall prescribe, to be used in the State or Territory in which such timber reservation may be situated,
respectively, but not for export therefrom. Before such sale shall take place, notice thereof shall be given by the Commissioner of the General Land Office, for not less than
sixty days, by publication in a newspaper of general circulation, published in the county in which the timber is situated, if any is therein published, and if not, then in a newspaper of general circulation published nearest to the reservation, and also in a newspaper of general circulation published at the capital of the State or Territory where such reservations exists; payments for such timber to be made to the receiver of the local land office of the district wherein said timber may be sold, under such rules and regulations as the Secretary of the Interior may prescribe; and the moneys arising therefrom shall be accounted for by the receiver of such land office to the Commissioner of the General Land Office, in a separate account, and shall be covered into the Treasury. Such timber,
before being sold, shall be marked and designated and shall be cut and removed under the supervision of some person appointed for that purpose by the Secretary of the Interior,
not interested in the purchase or removal of such timber nor in the employment of the purchaser thereof. Such supervisor shall make report in writing to the Commissioner of the General Land Office and to the receiver in the land office in which such reservation shall be located of his doings in the premises.

The Secretary of the Interior may permit, under regulations to be prescribed by him, the use of timber and stone found upon such reservations, free of charge, by bona fide settlers, miners, residents, and prospectors for minerals, for firewood, fencing, buildings, mining, prospecting, and other domestic purposes, as may be needed by such persons for such purposes; such timber to be used within the State or Territory, respectively, where such reservations may be located.

Nothing herein shall be construed as prohibiting the egress or ingress of actual settlers residing within the boundaries of such reservations, or from crossing the same to and from their property or homes; and such wagon roads and other improvements may be constructed thereon as may be necessary to reach their homes and to utilize their property
under such rules and regulations as may be prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior. Nor shall anything herein prohibit any person from entering upon such forest reservations for all proper and lawful purposes, including that of prospecting, locating, and developing the mineral resources thereof: Provided, That such persons comply with the rules and
regulations covering such forest reservations.

That in cases in which a tract covered by an unperfected bona fide claim or by a patent is included within the limits of a public forest reservation, the settler or owner thereof may, if he desires to do so, relinquish the tract to the Government, and may select in lieu thereof a tract of vacant land open to settlement not exceeding the area the tract covered by his claim or patent; and no charge shall be made in such cases for making the entry of record or issuing the patent to cover the tract selected: Provided further, That in cases of unperfected claims the requirements of the laws respecting settlement, residence, improvements, and so forth, are complied with on the new claims, credit being allowed for the time spent on the relinquished claims.

The settlers residing within the exterior boundaries of such forest reservations, or in the vicinity thereof, may maintain schools and churches within such reservations, and for that
purpose may occupy any part of said forest reservation, not exceeding two acres for each schoolhouse and one acre for a church.

The jurisdiction, both civil and criminal, over persons within such reservations shall not be affected or changed by reason of the existence of such reservations, except so far as
the punishment of offenses against the United States therein is concerned; the intent and meaning of this provision being that the State wherein any such reservation is situated shall not, by reason of the establishment thereof, lose its jurisdiction, nor the inhabitants thereof their rights and privileges as citizens, or be absolved from their duties as citizens of the State.

All waters on such reservations may be used for domestic, mining, milling, or irrigation purposes, under the laws of the State wherein such forest reservations are situated, or
under the laws of the United States and the rules and regulations established there under. Upon the recommendation of the Secretary of the Interior, with the approval of the President, after sixty days notice thereof, published in two papers of general circulation in the State or Territory wherein any forest reservation is situated, and near the said reservation, any public lands embraced within the limits of any forest reservation which, after due examination by personal inspection of a competent person appointed for the purpose by the Secretary of the Interior, shall be found better adapted for mining or for agricultural purposes than for forest usage, may be restored to the public domain. And any mineral lands in any forest reservation which have been or which may be shown to be such, and subject to entry under the existing mining laws of the United States and the rules and regulations applying thereto, shall continue to be subject to such location and entry, notwithstanding any provisions herein contained.

The President is hereby authorized at any time to modify any Executive order that has been or may hereafter be made establishing any forest reserve, and by such modification
may reduce the area or change the boundary lines of such reserve, or may vacate altogether any order creating such reserve.

Approved, June 4, 1897.