Proclamation 1433—Opening to Settlement Certain Lands on the Former Fort Peck Indian Reservation, Montana
By the President of the United States of America
Whereas, the Act of Congress approved May 30, 1908 (35 Stat., 558), providing for the survey and allotment of lands within the former Fort Peck Indian Reservation, Montana, and the sale and disposal of all the surplus lands after allotment, among other things directed that prior to the disposition of the surplus lands, such lands should be classified and appraised by three commissioners as agricultural land, grazing land, arid land and mineral land, the mineral land not to be appraised;
And Whereas, the Act of February 27, 1917 (39 Stat., 944) authorizes the classification and appraisal, exclusive of the coal deposits therein, of surplus coal lands in Indian Reservations classified as mineral lands, the lands to be subject to the same disposition as is prescribed by law for the non-mineral lands in such reservations, whenever proper application is made with a view to obtaining title to such lands, with a reservation to the United States of the coal deposits therein and of the right to prospect for, mine, and remove the same:
Now, Therefore, I, Woodrow Wilson, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the power and authority vested in me by the aforesaid acts of Congress do hereby prescribe, proclaim and make known that the coal lands on said reservation, classified and appraised without regard to the coal deposits, under the said Act of February 27, 1917, not heretofore opened to agricultural entry and not otherwise appropriated or reserved, shall be disposed of under the general provisions of the homestead and desert land laws and of the said Acts of Congress, with a reservation of the coal deposits, and be opened to settlement and entry and be settled upon, occupied and entered in the following manner and not otherwise:
1. Execution and Presentation of Applications. - - On and after 9 o'clock A.M., Standard Time, April 8, 1918, any person who is qualified to make entry under the general provisions of the homestead laws may swear to and present an application to make homestead entry for said lands, or any such person who is entitled to the benefits of Sections 2304, 2305 and 2307, of the Revised Statutes of the United States, may file a declaratory statement therefor.
Lands designated under the enlarged homestead Act may be entered in quantities of 320 acres. Prior to June 1, 1918, applications and declaratory statements must conform to present agricultural classifications and no petitions for designation either under the enlarged or the stock-raising homestead Act will be accepted. Each application to make homestead entry and each declaratory statement filed in person must be sworn to by the applicant before the Register or the Receiver of the United States land office at Glasgow, Montana, or before a United States Commissioner, or a judge or a clerk of a court of record residing in the country in which the land is situated, or before any such officer who resides outside the county and in the land district and is nearest or most accessible to the land. The agent's affidavit to each declaratory statement filed by agent must be sworn to by the agent before one of such officers, but the power of attorney appointing the agent may at any time after the date hereof be sworn to by the declarant before any officer in the United States having a seal and authority to administer oaths. After applications have been sworn to, they must be presented to the Register and Receiver of the Glasgow land office, in person, by mail, or otherwise. No person shall be permitted to present more than one application in his own behalf.
2. Purchase Money, Fees and Commissions. - - One-fifth of the appraised price of the land applied for must be paid at the time of entry and a sum equal thereto must be tendered with all applications to make homestead entry. Such sum will also be required with declaratory statements presented on or before April 20, 1918, and when so tendered will be disposed of as hereinafter provided. In addition, each application to make homestead entry must be accompanied by a fee of $5, if the area is less than 81 acres or $10, if 81 acres or more, and commissions at the rate of $1.50 for each 40-acre tract applied for; and each declaratory statement must be accompanied by a fee of $3.
3. Disposition of Applications. - - All homestead applications and declaratory statements presented hereunder, received by the Register and Receiver on or after 9 o'clock A.M., April 8, and prior to 4:30 o'clock P.M., April 20, 1918, shall be treated as filed simultaneously. No application will be considered that is filed before the time first stated. Where there is no conflict, applications and statements presented between the dates specified, if in proper form and accompanied by the required payments, will be allowed. If such applications or statements conflict in whole or in part, the right of the respective applicants will be determined by a public drawing to be conducted by or under the supervision of the Superintendent of Openings and Sales of Indian Reservations, at the Glasgow land office, beginning at 10 o'clock A.M., on April 23, 1918. The names of the persons who presented the conflicting applications or statements will be written on cards and these cards shall be placed in envelopes upon which there are no distinctive or identifying marks. These envelopes shall be thoroughly and impartially mixed, and, after being mixed, shall be drawn one at a time by some disinterested person. As the envelopes are drawn the cards shall be removed, numbered beginning with number one, and fastened to the applications of the proper persons, which shall be the order in which the applications and statements shall be acted upon and disposed of. If a homestead application or a declaratory statement cannot be allowed for any part of the land applied for, it shall be rejected. If it may be allowed for part of, but not for all, the land applied for, the applicant, or the declarant through his agent, shall be allowed thirty days from receipt of notice within which to notify the Register and Receiver, what disposition to make thereof. During such time, he may request that the application or statement be allowed for the land not in conflict and rejected as to the land in conflict, or that it be rejected as to all the land applied for; or he may apply to have the application or statement amended to include other land which is subject to entry and to inclusion in his application or statement, provided he is the prior applicant. If it is determined by the drawing that a declaratory statement shall be acted upon and disposed of before a homestead application for the same land, the homestead applicant shall be allowed thirty days from receipt of notice within which to advise the Register and Receiver whether to reject his application, or to allow it subject to the declaratory statement. If an applicant, or a declarant, or his agent, fails to notify the Register or Receiver what disposition to make of the application or statement, within the time allowed, it will be rejected as to all the land applied for. Homestead applications and declaratory statements which are presented after April 20, 1918, will be received and noted in the order of their filing, and will be acted upon and disposed of in the usual manner after all such applications and statements presented on or before that date have been acted upon and disposed of.
4. Disposition of Moneys. - - Moneys tendered with applications and statements presented on or before April 20, 1918, except fees for filing declaratory statements, will be deposited by the Receiver of the Glasgow land office, to his Official credit and properly accounted for. The fee for filing a declaratory statement must be paid even though the application is rejected, and such fees will be properly applied when the statement if filed. When a homestead application is allowed in whole or in part, the sums required as fees, commissions, and purchase money will be properly applied, and any sum in excess of the required amount will be returned to the applicant. When a declaratory statement is allowed in whole or in part, the sum which will be required as purchase money if entry is made under the declaratory statement will be held until entry has been allowed under the statement or the time has expired within which entry may be made, and any sum in excess of the required amount will be returned to the declarant. The moneys held will not be returned until the time has expired within which entry may be made under the statement but will be returned as soon as possible thereafter if entry is not made. Moneys tendered with applications and statements which are rejected in whole, except fees for filing declaratory statements, will be returned. If an applicant or declarant fails to secure all the land applied for and amends his application or statement to embrace other lands, the moneys theretofore tendered will be applied on account of the required payment under the amended application. If it is not sufficient, the applicant or declarant will be required to pay the deficiency, and it is more than sufficient, the excess will be returned. Money returned to applicants or declarants will be returned by the official check of the Receiver. Moneys tendered with applications or statements presented after April 20, 1918, will be deposited by the Receiver in the usual manner.
5. Form of entries. - - To avoid confusion in the disposition of the applications and to provide equal opportunity, as far as may be, the lands will be arranged into units and all persons, prior to June 1, 1918, must conform their applications to such units. No person will be allowed to embrace in his application the land in more than one unit or to leave unentered any portion thereof.
6. Deferred Payments. - - The purchase money not required at the time of entry may be paid in five equal, annual installments, unless commutation proof is made. These payments will become due at the end of one, two, three, four and five years after the date of entry.
The time for the payment of one-half of any such installment may be extended for one year at a time, upon the payment of interest in advance at the rate of five per centum per annum: Provided, the last payment and all other payments must be made within eight years from the date of entry. If commutation proof is made, all the unpaid installments must be paid at that time. Where satisfactory three-year proof is submitted, the entryman may make payment of the unpaid installments at that time or at any time before they become due and final certificate will issue, in the absence of objection, upon such payment being made.
7. Forfeiture. - - Failure to make any payment that may be due, unless the same be extended, or to make any extended payment at or before the time to which such payment has been extended, as herein provided, shall forfeit the entry and the same shall be canceled, and any and all payments theretofore made shall be forfeited.
8. Settlement Before Entry and Desert Land Entry. - - These lands will become subject to settlement before entry, and to entry under the desert land laws on June 1, 1918, and not before then. If entered under the desert land laws, entrymen must be able to fully meet the requirements thereof. Where desert land entry is made, the appraised price of the land may be paid in annual installments, the same as in homestead cases, with the exceptions that no extensions of time for payments can be granted and that all unpaid installments of purchase money must be paid whenever final proof is submitted. Settlements made and applications presented on or after June 1, 1918, need not conform to units, but may embrace any legal subdivisions authorized by existing law.
9. Rules and Regulations. - - The Secretary of the Interior is hereby authorized to make and prescribe such rules and regulations as may be necessary to carry the provisions of this Proclamation into full force and effect.
In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.
Done in the District of Columbia this 14th day of March in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and Eighteen and of the Independence of the United States of America the One Hundred and Forty-Second.
By the President:
FRANK L. POLK
Acting Secretary of State.
Woodrow Wilson, Proclamation 1433—Opening to Settlement Certain Lands on the Former Fort Peck Indian Reservation, Montana Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/276898