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Proclamation 385—Inclusion of the Bering Sea in Prohibition of Killing Fur-Bearing Animals in Alaska

April 14, 1896


By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

The following provisions of the laws of the United States are published hereby for the information of all concerned:

Section 1956, Revised Statutes, chapter 3, Title XXIII, enacts that--No person shall kill any otter, mink, marten, sable, or fur seal, or other fur-bearing animal within the limits of Alaska Territory or in the waters thereof; and every person guilty thereof shall for each offense be fined not less than $200 nor more than $1,000, or imprisoned not more than six months, or both; and all vessels, their tackle, apparel, furniture, and cargo, found engaged in violation of this section shall be forfeited; but the Secretary of the Treasury shall have power to authorize the killing of any such mink, marten, sable, or other fur-bearing animal, except fur seals, under such regulations as he may prescribe; and it shall be the duty of the Secretary to prevent the killing of any fur seal and to provide for the execution of the provisions of this section until it is otherwise provided by law, nor shall he grant any special privileges under this section.

Section 3 of the act entitled "An act to provide for the protection of the salmon fisheries of Alaska," approved March 2, 1889, provides--

SEC. 3. That section 1956 of the Revised Statutes of the United States is hereby declared to include and apply to all the dominion of the United States in the waters of Bering Sea; and it shall be the duty of the President at a timely season in each year to issue his proclamation, and cause the same to be published for one month in at least one newspaper (if any such there be) published at each United States port of entry on the Pacific coast, warning all persons against entering said waters for the purpose of violating the provisions of said section; and he shall also cause one or more vessels of the United States to diligently cruise said waters and arrest all persons and seize all vessels found to be or to have been engaged in any violation of the laws of the United States therein.

The act entitled "An act to extend to the North Pacific Ocean the provisions of the statutes for the protection of the fur seals and other fur-bearing animals," approved February 21, 1893, provides--

That whenever the Government of the United States shall conclude an effective international arrangement for the protection of fur seals in the North Pacific Ocean by agreement with any power or as a result of the decision of the Tribunal of Arbitration under the convention concluded between the United States and Great Britain February 29, 1892, and so long as such arrangement shall continue, the provisions of section 1956 of the Revised Statutes and all other provisions of the statutes of the United States, so far as the same may be applicable, relative to the protection of fur seals and other fur-bearing animals within the limits of Alaska or in the waters thereof shall be extended to and over all that portion of the Pacific Ocean included in such international arrangement. Whenever an effective international arrangement is concluded as aforesaid it shall be the duty of the President to declare that fact by proclamation and to designate the portion of the Pacific Ocean to which it is applicable and that this act has become operative, and likewise when such arrangement ceases to declare that fact and that this act has become inoperative; and his proclamation in respect thereto shall be conclusive. During the extension as aforesaid of said laws for the protection of fur seals or other fur-bearing animals all violations thereof in said designated portion of the Pacific Ocean shall be held to be the same as if committed within the limits of Alaska or in the waters thereof, but they may be prosecuted either in the district court of Alaska or in any district court of the United States in California, Oregon, or Washington.

An arrangement having been made for the protection of fur seals as a result of the decision of the Tribunal of Arbitration under the convention concluded as aforesaid February 29, 1892, which prohibits the killing of seals at any time within a radius of 60 miles around the Pribilof Islands or during May, June, and July of each year in that portion of the Pacific Ocean, inclusive of Bering Sea, situated to the north of the thirty-fifth degree of north latitude and eastward of the one hundred and eightieth degree of longitude from Greenwich until it strikes the water boundary described in Article I of the treaty of 1867 between the United States and Russia, and following that line up to Bering Strait:

Now, therefore, be it known that I, Grover Cleveland, President of the United States of America, hereby declare that the said act of Congress of February 21, 1893, has become operative; that in accordance therewith section 1956 of the Revised Statutes is applicable to the waters above mentioned, included in the award of the tribunal at Paris given under the said convention of February 29, 1892, and that I have caused the foregoing laws specially to be proclaimed to the end that their provisions may be known and observed.

I hereby proclaim that every person guilty of a violation of the provisions of said laws and of any other provisions of the statutes of the United States, so far as the same may be applicable, relative to the protection of fur-bearing animals within the limits of Alaska or in the waters thereof will be arrested and punished as therein provided, and all vessels so engaged, their tackle, apparel, furniture, and cargo, will be seized and forfeited.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed.

Done at the city of Washington, this 14th day of April, A.D. 1896, and of the Independence of the United States the one hundred and twentieth.

GROVER CLEVELAND.

By the President:

RICHARD OLNEY,

Secretary of State.

Grover Cleveland, Proclamation 385—Inclusion of the Bering Sea in Prohibition of Killing Fur-Bearing Animals in Alaska Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project https://www.presidency.ucsb.edu/node/205584

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