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Report of Board of Control.
Insurance Report for 1901. Volume I. Fire.
Insurance Report for 1902. Volume I. Fire.
STATE OF IOWA.
CHARLES W. MULLAN,
Transmitted to the Governor, January, 1902.
PRINTED BY ORDER OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY.
To the Honorable Albert B. Cummins, Governor of Iowa:
In compliance with the requirements of law, I hereby submit to you a report of the business transacted by this office during the years 1900 and 1901.
Schedule "A" is a complete list of all criminal appeals submitted to the supreme court of which disposition has been made.
Schedule “B” is a list of all of the civil cases tried in the different courts of the state and of the United States, with the results of such trials.
Schedule “C” is a statement of all criminal and civil cases pending on the first day of January, 1902.
Schedule "D" is the official written opinions delivered by this office during the years 1900 and 1901.
The policy of this office, that all appeals in criminal cases shall be submitted to the supreme court at as early a day as can be reasonably done, has been followed as strictly as is practicable, and the results have been satisfactory. It is now generally understood by the members of the bar throughout the state that unnecessary delays in the determination of appeals in criminal cases cannot be obtained, and the cases are as a rule promptly prepared and submitted for determination by the supreme court.
Comparatively few of the judgments of the district courts in criminal cases are reversed by the supreme court, and this fact is evidence of the ability and care with which this class of cases is tried in the district courts of the state. The criminal laws of the state are as a rule wisely and faithfully administered, and generally well enforced throughout the state.
During the past year there has been an unusual number of murder cases tried in the district and supreme courts. I am unable to suggest any reason why this condition exists. Nota withstanding this fact, the criminal statistics of the state compare favorably with those of other states, and our people are, as a rule, law abiding citizens.
Schedules “B” and “C” furnish information as to the status of the civil cases in which the state is a party, and it is not deemed necessary to refer to all of such cases here in detail.
The most important of this class of cases now pending in the courts are what is known as
THE LAKE BED CASES.
When the original government survey of the lands within the state of Iowa was made, many lakes were meandered and excluded from the public lands claimed by the government, which have since become dry, either by natural or artificial means. The drying up of these lakes has left large tracts of land which were not included in the government survey, and the question as to the ownership of such lands is now involved in several suits pending in the district courts.
It is the claim of the state that it holds the absolute title to all lakes and lake beds within the state under its right of sovereignty, while it is urged on the other hand, by those opposed to the claim made by the state, that such lake beds were, and are, a part of the swamp lands of the state, which passed from the government to the state, and from the state to the county in which the same are situated, and from the counties to individual purchasers.
The case of Rood v. Wallace is now pending in the supreme court of the United States upon a writ of error to the supreme court of the state, the state of Iowa, as intervenor therein, being the plaintiff in error. The case has been argued fully in print, and will be submitted for determination at the October term of the supreme court of the United States.
Another case of like character is pending in the district court of Greene county, and it is hoped that a decision of these cases will determine the rights of the state in the lake bed lands.
COLLATERAL INHERITANCE TAX.
The law imposing a tax upon collateral inheritance has been before the supreme court in several cases for construction, and many questions involved have been determined by that court. Questions are, however, continually arising as to the interpreta