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fice. There were prepared in his office 51 plats of exterin: lines, 162 plats of exterior and subdivisional lines, 460 of mining claims and mill sites, and 19 other mining plats and amendments thereto, 266 descriptive lists of public surveys, and 115 transcripts of field notes of mining claims and mill sites.
The sum of $1,938.64 was deposited for field work on public surveys and $246.36 for office work. There were also deposited for office work on surveys of 115 mining claims $3,435, which added to special deposits for office work on public surveys, makes $3,681.36. The amount paid in salaries out of special deposits was $4,059.50, being $378.14 more than was deposited during the year, the latter sum being drawn from special deposits in former years remaining to the credit of the office.
The appropriation of $1,500 for incidental expenses of the office was expended except a balance of seventy cents and the appropriation of $5,750 for salaries was expended except a balance of $6.80.
His estimates of appropriations for the service of the year ending June 30, 1880, are as follows: For public surveys, $55,000, including $5,000 for connecting mineral monuments; for salaries, $10,000, including $2,000 for arrears of office work, and for contingent expenses, $2,500.
Washington.—The surveyor general reports a year of unparalleled growth in agriculture in the Territory. In one county the area in wheat was increased from 28,000 acres in 1877, to 46,000 in 1878.
Two hundred miles of railroad are completed and in operation.
In spite of the Indian war, the population in some counties has more than doubled
The five contracts for public surveys not closed at date of last annual report, are now closed, and the work having been paid for, leaves a balance of $394.45 of the assignment for 1877, unexpended.
Under the assignment of $16,050 for the year ending June 30, 1878, seven contracts were let, which are mostly completed. Two contracts were also let payable out of special deposits, and in four instances small surveys were made under special instructions.
The total amount paid for work under contracts out of the appropriation, was $10,938.17, which taken from $16,050, the amount assigned to Washington Territory, leaves a balance of $5,111.83.
The amount deposited for field work was $1,811.56. Of this $1,610.08 was paid for survey, leaving an excess of $201.48 over cost of field work.
The sum of $290.44 was deposited within the year for office work on public surveys, which added to $122.44 on hand and unexpended from former years, made $412.88 available to pay clerk hire. Of this sum $350 were paid out, thus leaving $62.88 unexpended June 30, 1878.
The appropriation of $6,500 for salaries was paid out. This added to $350 paid for clerk hire from special deposit account, and $1,500 for incidental expenses of office, makes a total of $8,350 as the cost of maintaining the surveyor general's office for the year.
The surveyor general calls attention to the disproportion of the expense in office work when small appropriations are made for surveys compared with the same under large appropriations for surveys. He contrasts the appropriations for surveys and the office expenses for several years past, and shows that the expense of maintaining the office under a small appropriation for surveys is about as much as under a large one.
The number of miles surveyed in 1878, was 4,060; number of acres surveved, 1,398,670.93; number of plats and tracings made in his office, 226. His estimates for the surveying service for the year ending June 30, 1880, are as follows: For surveys, $109,912; for salaries, $10,500; and for incidental expenses, $2,000.
Wyoming Territory.—The surveys made during the year ending June 30, 1878, are reported by the surveyor general as follows: One hundred and eighty-two miles of standard and meridian lines; exterior lines of 52 townships, in length 451 miles; also 1,050 miles in subdivding 19 townships, four of which are within the Union Pacific Railroad grant.
The number of acres surveyed is 392,717, which, added to the area previously surveyed, makes 7,926,173 acres, in 381 townships.
Two contracts for surveys under appropriation of March 3, 1877, are not yet completed.
The area of coal lands surveved in 1877 is reported as 27,454 acres, which, added to previously surveyed coal lands in the Territory, makes 262,824 acres. .
Twenty-six descriptions of desert-land claims were received from the Cheyenne office, and one claim from the Evanston office, with an aggregate area of 9,286.25 acres.
Many new settlements of stock raisers and farmers are reported in the valley of the North Platte, on Bear River, Medicine Bow, and Laramie Rivers.
Besides miscellaneous work, there were prepared in the office 19 original township plats and the same number of duplicates and triplicates for the General Land Office and local land offices respectively, and for the latter there were also prepared 38 lists descriptive of corners, quality of soil, &c., in the 19 townships. Diagrams of the surveys of standard and exterior lines and transcripts of all the field notes of surveys were prepared and sent to the General Land Office.
The amount paid for salaries during the year was $6,487.98, of which all but $238.46 was paid out of the regular appropriation, the latter sum having been paid out of special deposits for office work.
The sum of $1,500 was appropriated for rent and other incidental expenses of the office. Of this amount $945.45 were expended, the remainder, $554.55, reverting to the United States Treasury.
The estimates submitted for the year ending June 30, 1880, amount to $58,900, of which $46,400 is for surveys, $10,500 for salaries, and $2,000 for contingent expenses.
The surveyor general remarks that he has discontinued the services of his principal and assistant draughtsman and transcribing clerk on account of a deficiency in the appropriation for this year.
I add a statement of the areas surveyed in the States and Territories, severally considered, both of public lands and private claims, during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1878:
Survey of Dakota and Wyoming boundary. By act of March 3, 1877, in addition to the appropriation for general surveys before stated, the sum of $7,000 was appropriated for the survey of that part of the eastern boundary of Wyoming which is common to Dakota, and is that part of the twenty-seventh meridian of longitude west of Washington Observatory, lying between the forty-third and fortyfifth degrees of north latitude. By direction of the department, a contract for the work was made by this office on April 6, 1877, with the designated astronomer and surveyor, Rollin J. Reeves. The survey was begun on June 6, 1877, and was finished August 1, 1877. It was found satisfactory and was approved December 10, 1877. . This boundary was fixed by act of Congress approved July 25, 1868 (15 Stat., p. 178), and extends through the Black Hills and through that part of the lands recently ceded to the United States by the Sioux Indians and lying between the forty-third and forty-fifth parallels north latitude. The initial point of the survey was the monument on the east boundary of Wyoming, and common to and marking the northwest corner of Nebraska and the southwest corner of Dakota. The beginning corner stands on a nearly level open prairie, covered with bunch grass, on an elevation of 3,886 feet above the sea level. From this point the astronomer proceeded due north to the intersection of the forty-fifth parallel of north latitude, which he established by astronomical observations, and reached at a distance of 138 miles and 32 chains from the starting point.
Up to the thirtieth mile of the boundary the country is mostly open prairie and grazing land. At 30 miles and 71 chains the South Fork of the Cheyenne is intersected, and after crossing this stream the soil is poorer. From the forty-second mile, where the Black Hills were reached, the line runs over à rough and mountainous country as far as the one bundred and seventh mile. From there to the end of the line the country is open broken prairie. Between the fifty-second and seventieth miles the line crosses many deep, rocky cañons.
The two highest points on the line are at distances of 784 miles and 923 miles, respectively, from the initial point: the elevation at the former being 6,526 feet and at the latter 6,436 feet; the general elevation of the Black Hills being about 6,000 feet above sea level.
The Wyoming-Dakota boundary is marked chiefly by mile posts of cottonwood, pine, or cedar, and with pits and witness trees, when such trees were near enough to note their distance and bearing. The posts are marked on the north face "1877," on the east“ Dakota," on the west “Wyoming," and on the south the number of miles the post stands north of the initial point.
At the approximate terminal point of the intersection of the twenty. seventh meridian west longitude with the forty-fifth parallel north latitude, a temporary post of cottonwood was planted and three pits were dug. The post was marked on the east 5 Dakota,” on the northwest “ Montana," on the southwest "Wyoming," and on the southeast 645 north latitude."
By order of the Secretary of War, an escort was directed to be furnished to accompany the surveyor, and some twenty soldiers and an officer were detailed for that purpose. When the party had gone through the Black Hills, and were nearly through the survey, on July 21 the Indians attacked them, and the escort not being sufficient to repulse the attack, the survevor reports that he lost all bis provisions, wearing apparel, and carefully-written notes of the survey, with maps, thus compelling him to rewrite his notes from the memoranda of the chainmen.
After several days' delay and receiving a re-enforcement of soldiers, the survey was completed.
The cost of the survey was $7,000, the sum appropriated by Congress for the purpose. Resurvey of the boundary between the State of Arkansas and the Indian
Territory. The act of Congress of March 3, 1875 (18 Stat., p. 476), provided for the resurvey of the boundary line between the State of Arkansas and the Indian Territory, and this work was concluded during the fiscal year ending June 30, 1878, having been commenced and to a great extent prosecuted during the previous fiscal year.
The eastern boundary of that portion of Indian Territory which divides the lands of the Choctaw Nation from the State of Arkansas is 120 miles 62 of a chain in length. Its position is defined by the first article of the treaty between the United States and the chiefs and headmen of the Choctaw Nation which was concluded at the city of Washington January 20, 1825, and which reads as follows:
The Choctaw Nation do hereby cede to the United States all that portion of the land ceded to them by the second article of the treaty of Doak Stand, as aforesaid, lying east of a line beginning on the Arkansas one hundred paces east of Fort Smith, and running thence due south to Red river; it being understood that this line shall constitute and remain the permanent boundary between the United States and the Choctaws; and the United States agreeing to remove such citizens as may be settled on the west side to the east side of said line and prevent future settlements from being made on the west thereof.
In accordance with the foregoing, the boundary was originally surveyed in the year 1825, and the lines of the public land surveys of the State of Arkansas were closed thereon in 1827. As the land-marks were growing dim from age, the boundary was retraced, by order of the gov. ernment, in the year 1858. This work was accomplished by Deputy Sur. veyors A. H. Jones and H. M. C. Brown, acting under instructions from the Commissioner of Indian Affairs. By this retracement it was discovered that the line as originally established was not meridional, as intended and required by the treaty, and that its divergence to the west, as the line proceeded southward from the Arkansas, had led to a serious encroachment upon the Indian lands.
By the act of Congress of March 3, 1875, before mentioned, the line as originally surveyed and marked was declared to be the permanent boundary, and the honorable Secretary of the Interior was authorized to provide for a second retracement of the line, to be marked in a distinct, and permanent manner. For this work and the retracement of the Eastern Cherokee boundary line the act of appropriation of March 3, 1877, provided the sum of $11,880, a portion of which was intended to cover the cost of planting suitable iron posts at the end of each mile of either boundary.
The honorable Secretary of the Interior having designated Henry E. McKee as a suitable person to retrace the boundary lines, a contract, accompanied with full instructions, was entered into under date March 12, 1877, and the work of retracement of the Choctaw boundary was commenced by him on April 16, 1877, and completed on the 24th of May following. The contract and instructions requiring that the true treaty line should be run and temporarily marked for purposes of computation, that work was executed in parts of June and July of the same year.
The northern extremity of the Choctaw boundary originally rested upon the south bank of the Arkansas River, but in consequence of changes produced by the currents, that point is now situated upon a sand bar in the stream, and is at times inaccessible. Foreseeing the loss of so important a monument, the Army officers at that time stationed at Fort Smith took pains to preserve full evidence of its location by planting a large post at a safe distance from the bank of the river. This means of reference was made use of by Deputies Brown and Jones, in 1858, and, as they certify, the point so designated was found to agree with other landmarks of the original survey. In order to perpetuate the line as thus preserved, the last aforementioned deputies, in accordance with their instructions, erected a permanent stone monument at a point 26.15 chains south of the corner common to the Choctaw and Cherokee lands, which monument is known and referred to as " initial point."
This initial monument was the starting point of the retracement of the Choctaw boundary by Deputy McKee, upon the completion of which a meridional or true treaty line, commencing at the same initial point, was extended thence to the north bank of Red River. This latter line was run but not permanently marked, its sole object being to determine the quantity of land embraced between it and the established boundary, in order that the Indians might be properly compensated for the area of land unintentionally added to the State of Arkansas by the original survey of 1825. This line was connected, as the instructions required, at frequent intervals by lines running west to the permanent boundary. In the retracement of 1858 a meridian was projected astronomically to a point six miles south of the initial monument and a measurement made thence west to the boundary. A similar measurement between corresponding points of the retracement of 1877 shows practical coincidence with that recorded in the retracement notes of 1858. The area embraced between the treaty line and the actual boundary was found to be 137,500.12 acres.
Numerous landmarks of the retracement of 1858, consisting principally of witness trees and the remains of mounds marking the mile points, were found by Deputy McKee, and at intervals tree marks of the original survey were discovered.
The boundary line is now marked at each mile by an iron post octagonal in form, 5 feet long and 4 inches in diameter, cast hollow, with a shell of half an inch, appropriately marked on four sides by raised letters and figures cast thereon. The posts are set at the depth of 24 feet below the natural surface of the ground. A conical mound 13 feet high and sloping to a base of 5 feet diameter is raised about the post. Adjacent to the post pits are dug in line and on either side, and wherever practicable, the post is witnessed by bearing trees suitably blazed and inscribed.
The deputy engaged in the last retracement reports no important encroachment upon the Choctaw lands by individuals other than cases of the extension of cultivated fields of Arkansas across the boundary line by common consent of parties united in interest by intermarriage of whites and Indians.
The lands along this boundary, excepting those in the valleys of the principal streams, are described as being rocky, rough, and in some cases mountainous. Many tracts noted in the retracement of 1858 as cultivated fields have since been abandoned. The country is well supplied with pure water, and is regarded healthy. The mountain regions abound in pine timber, which is, however, too remote from market to be of present value. No deposits of valuable minerals were noticed during the progress of the surveys.