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grounds-and it does not seem possible to prevent it will necessarily lead to hostilities and a devastation of the frontier settlements.
The tribes within our borders are capable of civilization. The past furnishes gratifying evidence that well-directed and persistent efforts to that end will be rewarded with success. It is, however, a work of time. The arts of civilization but slowly displaced the primitive tastes and habits of our own race. It must be so with the Indian ; he cannot immediataly be transformed from the hunter to the farmer or mechanic. There are intermediate states through which he has to pass. He should be gradually won from the chase to a pastoral life, and under its influences he will ultimately acquire a taste for agricultural pursuits. The first step in the process of improvement is to localize the Indians. The same district should not be appropriated to the savage and the civilized, nor should tribes between whom hereditary feuds exist be brought together, as it would be followed by disastrous results. No objection is perceived to placing the civilized upon contiguous tracts; on the contrary, it is expedient to do so, and, as soon as their consent can be obtained, to subject them to the same system of government and laws. But such a policy is wholly inapplicable to the wild tribes; they require, in proportion to their numbers, much more territory, and can only be governed and controlled, and trained to habits of industry on separate and widely distant reservations, selected in view of their adapta. tion to grazing as well as tillage, and amply stocked by the government with large numbers of cattle, sheep, and goats. The Indian will discover that a herdsman’s life affords a better and surer subsistence than a precarious dependence upon the chase. A desire for the acquisition of individual property will soon spring up, and should be gratified by appropriating to each adult a limited quantity of land for his exclusive use. A title thereto should be assured to him, and farming utensils furnished. He will then learn to cultivate the soil. The mechanic arts will follow. The schoolmaster, and above all the missionary, with the blessings and hopes of religion, will crown and perpetuate the work.
The unoccupied country west of the Missouri is of such vast extent that large regions, if properly selected, at points remote from the great lines of travel, may be reserved without detriment to any public interest. Long before the tide of emigration will reach them, they can, by an equitable arrangement with the Indians, be reduced to the dimensions required by the actual wants of an agricultural population.
The selection of suitable sites, and the removal of the Indians to them, cannot be accomplished in the short time allotted to the Commissioners appointed by the act of Congress of July last. Two commissions, each consisting of not less thaa three persons, should be appointed, and adequate means placed at the disposal of the Secretary of the Interior for the efficient completion of the work. No consideration of the time or expenditure likely to be required should be suffered to defeat an object of such surpassing importance. A guarantee against the useless consumption of time or money should be found in the character of the persons selected. The cost will be very inconsiderable compared with that of a war. Had a tithe of our outlay in military operations against the Indians during the present year been honestly and judiciously applied to purposes of
peace, the necessity of a resort to force would have been avoided. It is more humane and economical to subsist Indians than to fight them. A wise and just policy will soon relieve us from either necessity.
The salaries of the Superintendents of Indian Affairs and Indian agents are inadequate. Increased compensation would enable the department to secure the servicesof men of undoubted capacity and integrity, and tend to remove the temptation to commit those frauds, which, before and since the transfer of the Indian Bureau to this department, were and still are imputed to officers performing duties and sustaining relations to the Indians such as devolve upon this class of publci servants. I take pleasure, however, in bearing testimny to the ability and fidelity of many now in the Indian service. Some of those of the greatest merit have announced their intention to resign on account of the insufficiency of their pay. Loss to the government and serious wrong to the Indians would be prevented by an appropriation for the employment of special agents, to investigate and correct, at remote posts, frauds and abuses, which cannot be properly dealt with by the instrumentalities now subject to the order of the Department.
The necessities of the service tequires that a superintendent should be immediately appointed for each of the Territories of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Dakota.
During the year ending September 30, 1867, there were sixteen thousand five hundred and forty-seven (16,547) applications for patents ; eleven thousand six hundred and fifty-five (11,655) patents (including reissues and designs) were issued ; one thousand two hundred and twenty-four (1,224) applications were allowed, but patents have not issued thereon, by reason of the non-payment of the final fees; three thousand four hundred and eighty-six (3,486) caveats were filed; ninety-six (96) applications for extension were received, and eighty-two (82) extensions of patents were granted.
During the same period the receipts were six hundred and eleven thousand nine hundred and ten dollars and sixty-one cents. ($611,910 61,) and the expendditures five hundred and fifty-three thousand five hundred and ninety-nine dollars and ninety-eight cents, ($553,599 98,) leaving a balance of fifty-eight thousand three hundred and ten dollars and sixty-three cents, ($58,310 63,) which added to two hundred and twenty-eight thousand two hundred and ninety-seven dollars and twenty-six cents, ($228,297 26,) the balance on hand September 30, 1866, makes the amount now in the treasury to the credit of the patent fund, two hundred and eighty-six thousand six hundred and seven dollars and eighty-nine cents ($286,607 89.)
In my last annual report I advised a repeal of the law conferring upon a party the right of appeal from the Commissioner of Patents to one of the judges of the supreme court of this District. Subsequent reflection has confirmed my conviction of the soundness of the views then presented. In no other instance is an appellate power given to a judge to affirm or reverse the action of an executive officer. This exceptional proceeding is essentially different from an action instituted in a court of original jurisdiction for a mandamus against an officer to
enforce the performance of a specific duty, or from that wherein an injunction is sought to restrain him from the commission of an act which would work irreparable injury to rights of property. Neither does it bear any analogy, even the most remote, to a suit in which either party thereto asserts a right or resists a claim resting upon an adjudication to which the other party was a stranger, and which was rendered by an executive officer, or a special tribunal, authorized to deal only between one party and the government. The court having cognizance of the suit may review such adjudication and correct errors of law or fact, to the prejudice of either party. This doctrine has been announced by the Supreme Court in suits where the title to land was in issue, and where a party relied npon the decision of the General Land Office, awarding a right of pre-emption or vacating an entry, It has also been applied in cases involving a claim to priority of invention, as an inquiry is not precluded by a patent in any court in which its validity is brought in question. A judicial determination of conflicting rights is final and conclusive on the parties and those subsequently claiming under them. The decision of the judge on appeal awarding a patent, even in interference cases, has not this, nor indeed any greater, force or effect than that of the patent bureau, and may be reviewed in the same manner. when a proper case arises. I respectfully submit that an appellate authority over an executive officer should not be devolved upon a judge, especially where his decision upon the questions in controversy has not the properties or binding efficacy of a judgment at law, or a decree in equity. Delays are occasioned and expenses incurred by this objectionable and anomalous practice, without any compensating benefit to the inventor or the public.
The Union Pacific Railroad Company at the date of my last annual report had constructed its road to a point twenty-three miles west of the one hundredth meridian of longitude, being two hundred and seventy miles west from the initial point near Omaha. Since then you have accepted two hundred and twenty miles, and the government commissioners are now engaged in examining another completed section of twenty miles.
The point where the railroad crosses Crow creek at Cheyenne, five hundred and seventeen miles west of the initial point, was represented by the company to be at the eastern base of the Rocky mountains, and they requested that it should be so "fixed” for the purposes mentioned in the 11th section of the act of 1862, which confers a subsidy of $48,000 per mile for a distance of one hundred and fifty miles westerly from such base.
You determined to defer final action until after a thorough personal inspection of the locality and the contiguous country should have been made by an experienced civil engineer. Mr. Jacob Blickensderfer, jr., was selected for that purpose and instructed to set forth in his report all the facts elicited by such inspection, and to accompany it with a map of the region and a profile of the proposed line of road. After accepting the appointment, he proceeded as far west as Dodge's Summit, stated to be the crest of the water shed of the continent, about thirty miles northwest of Bridger's pass, and examined the general formation of the ranges known as the Rocky mountains. South of Long's Peak these mountains consist of one single compact range, attain
ing a great elevation, while north thereof they form three distinct ranges. One of these, the Black Hills, trends nearly north to Laramie Peak, where it divides into two branches. The second, the Medicine Bow range, divides the waters of the Laramie from those of the north fork of the Platte, and bears north-northwest to Elk mountain, near Fort Halleck, where it also divides into two branches termed the Rattlesnake Hills. The third, taking a direction nearly northwest to Bridger's pass, Dodge's Summit, and South pass, divides the waters which flow into the Atlantic from those which flow into the Pacific.
From the point of divergence near Long's Peak, these ranges rapidly decline in elevation to the northward, while the intervening country approximates in altitude to that of the mountains themselves. The passes of the Black Hills, although much lower than those south of Long's Peak, within the drainage of the Platte, are nevertheless considerably higher than those of the Medicine Bow range or of the water shed of the continent between Bridger's pass and South pass. The approaches to the Black Hills, especially from the east, are abrupt, and the crest is comparatively sharp and marked by bold, rocky elevations, which form distinguishing landmarks, visible at a great distance. The ascent to the crest of the water shed is so gentle as to be scarcely perceptible, and the crest itself is a wide, open plain, free from rocks or bold elevations, and its inclinations for miles of extent can be determined only by the aid of instruments.
The located line of road crosses the three ranges formed by the Black Hills, the Medicine Bow mountains or their continuations, the Rattlesnake hills, and the water shed proper. The altitude above tide-water of the points where it strikes them, respectively, is as follows : Black Hills eight thousand two hundred and forty-two feet; Rattlesnake Hills seven thousand one hundred and thirty-two feet, and Dodge's Summit seven thousand one hundred and eight feet. The height of the country between these summits may be inferred from the elevations at the following places, to wit: seven thousand one hundred and fifty feet at Fort Sanders, beyond the western base of the Black Hills; six thousand five hundred and sixty-nine feet at the crossing of the Medicine Bow river, the lowest point touched by the railroad line between the Black Hills and Rattlesnake Summit; six thousand four hundred and eighty-four feet at the crossing of the north fork of the Platte, the lowest point between Rattlesnake and Dodge's Summit. It appears that the Black Hills loom up more than a thousand feet above the crest of the water shed of the continent, and that the region between them is nowhere greatly depressed below the latter, except in the immediate valleys of the water-courses. Mr. Blickensderfer is of opinion that a line of railway will encounter at the Black Hills greater obstacles and require in its construction a much greater outlay than in passing over either of the ranges west of them. The country known. as the Laramie plains, and situate between the Black Hills and the water shed of the continent proper, is essentially mountainous, being but elevated tableland hemmed in by mountains, and when examined found to possess but few of the characteristics of a plain. These interesting facts in regard to that distant region satisfied him that the Black Hills constitute a prominent portion of the Rocky mountains, and that the eastern base of the latter is reached by the road
at a point on those hills six and six hundred and thirty-seven one-thousandths (667) miles west of Cheyenne, and, according to the railroad surveys, five hundred and twenty-five and seventy-eight one-thousandths (525-786) miles west from the eastern terminus of the road.
Upon a consideration of the report and the maps accompanying it, you concurred in the recommendation of the department, and ordered that the point so described should be considered, in the administration of the acts of Congress for the purpose therein mentioned, as the eastern base of the Rocky mountains. The Secretary of the Treasury and the railroad company have been informed of
Reports from the government directors, dated July 23 and August 16, 1867, gave a very favorable report upon the location of the road and the energy with which the work was being prosecuted. Two machine shops were in full operation-one at Omaha, costing two hundred and fifty thousand dollars, ($250,000,) and another at North Platte, costing twenty thousand dollars, ($20,000,employing three hundred and fifty (350) men, with a capacity to make twenty (20) cars per week, and repair all the machinery and rolling stock of the road. At the latter date the company had thirty-five hundred (3,500) men employed in grading the road-bed, and four hundred and fifty (450) in laying the superstructure.
The company, under date of the 11th of October, report that the road during the present year would probably be extended to a point 537 miles west of Omaha, and that station buildings, engine-houses, water stations and the telegraph line to meet the wants of the road had been built. Shops and an engine house have been commenced at Cheyenne. The grading, masonry and bridging in the mountain regions were in active progress. The road has been definitely located 600 miles, and the earth work will be finished to that point the present year.
The surveys of the line have been revised through to Salt Lake. A reconnoissance of the various routes has been made by the chief and consulting engineers, in order to secure the most favorable location which the topographical features of the country will admit. The Indian raids in the course of the past season have seriously interrupted the progress of the engineers. Great vigilance on the part of surveying parties, and their protection by military escorts, have been indispensable.
The total cost of the road to October 1, 1867, (unadjusted accounts with contractors not included,) amounts, according to the report, to.. $21, 757, 488 79
Of this sum there was received from-
$5, 369, 750 00 7, 280, 000 00 4,090, 000 00 3, 000, 000 00 1, 661, 424 04
356, 314 75
21, 757, 488 79