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ACTION OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT RELA
TIVE TO ALASKA SINCE THE CESSION.
Laws enacted by Congress.
Pages. 92-99 99-113 113-124
LAWS ENACTED BY CONGRESS.
A resolution more efficiently to protect the fur-seal in Alaska.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the islands of St. Paul and St. George in Alaska be, and they are hereby, declared a special reservation for Government purposes; and that, until otherwise provided by law, it shall be unlawful for any person to land or remain on either of said islands, except by the authority of the Secretary of the Treasury; and any person found on either of said islands, contrary to the provisions of this resolution, shall be summarily removed; and it shall be the duty of the Secretary of War to carry this resolution immediately into effect.
Approved, March 3, 1869.
An act to prevent the extermination of fur-bearing animals in Alaska.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That it shall be unlawful to kill any fur-seal upon the islands of Saint Paul and Saint George, or in the waters adjacent thereto, except during the months of June, July, September and October in each year, and it shall be unlawful to kill such seals at any time by the use of fire-arms, or use other means tending to drive the seals away from said islands: Provided, That the natives of said islands shall have the privilege of killing such young seals as may be necessary for their own food and clothing during other months, and also such old seals as may be required for their own clothing and for the manufacture of boats for their own use, which killing shall be limited and controlled by such regulations as shall be prescribed by the Secretary of the Treasury.
SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, that it shall be unlawful to kill any female seal, or any seal less than one year old, at any season of the year, except as above provided; and it shall also be unlawful to kill any seal in the waters adjacent to said islands, or on the beaches, cliffs, or rocks where they haul up from the sea to remain; and any person who shall violate either of the provisions of this or the first section of this act shall be punished, on convictiou thereof, for such offence by a
fine of not less than two hundred dollars, nor more than one thousand dollars, or by imprisonment not exceeding six months, or by such fine and imprisonment both, at the discretion of the court having jurisdiction by taking cognizance of the offence; and all vessels, their tackle, apparel, and furniture, whose crew shall be found engaged in the violation of any of the provisions of this act shall be forfeited to the United States.
SEC. 3. And be it further enacted, that for the period of twenty years from and after the passing of this act the number of fur seals which may be killed for their skins upon the island of Saint Paul is hereby limited and restricted to seventy-five thousand per annum; and the number of fur-seals which may be killed for their skins upon the island of Saint George is hereby limited and restricted to twenty-five thousand per annum: Provided, That the Secretary of the Treasury may restrict and limit the right of killing if it shall become necessary for the preservation of such seals with such proportionate reduction of the rents reserved to the Government as shall be right and proper, and if any person shall knowingly violate either of the provisions of this section he shall, upon due conviction thereof, be punished in the same way as provided her in for a violation of the provisions of the first and second sections of this act.
SEC. 4. And be it further enacted, that immediately upon the passage of this act, the Secretary of the Treasury shall lease for the rental mentioned in section six of this act, to proper and responsible parties, to the advantage of the United States having due regard to the interests of the Government, the native inhabitants, the parties heretofore engaged in trade, and the protection of the seal fisheries for a term of twenty years from the first day of May, eighteen hundred and seventy, the right to engage in the business of taking fur seals on the islands of Saint Paul and Saint George, and to send a vesselor vessels to said islands for the skins of such seals, giving to the lessee or lessees of said islands a lease, duly executed in duplicate not transferable, and taken from the lessee or lessees of said islands a bond with sufficient securities in a sum not less than five hundred thousand dollars conditioned for the faithful observance of all the laws and requirements of Congress and of the regulations of the Secretary of the Treasury touching the subject-matter of taking fur seal, and disposing of the same, and for the payment of all taxes and dues according to the United States connecteil therewith, and in making said lease the Secretary of the Treasury shall have due regard to the preservation of the seal-fur trade of said islands and the comfort, maintenance, and education of the natives thereof. The said lesses shall furnish to the several masters of vessels employed by them certified copies of the lease held by them respectively, which shall be presented to the Government revenue officer for the time being who may be in charge at the said islands as the authority of the party for landing and taking skins.
SEC. 5. And be it further enacted, That at the expiration of said term of twenty years or on surrender or forfeiture of any lease, other leases may be made in manner aforesaid for other terms of twenty years; but no persons other than American citizens shall be permitted by lease or otherwise, to occupy said islands or either of them, for the purpose of taking the skins of fur seals therefrom, nor shall any foreign vessel be engaged in taking such skins, and the Secretary of the Treasury shall vacate and declare any lease forfeited if the same be held or or ited for the use, benefit, or advantage, directly or indirectly, of any person or persons other than American citizens. Every lease shall contain a covenant on the part of the lessee that he will not keep, sell, furnish, give, or dispose of any distilled spirits or spirituous liquors on either of said islands to any of the natives thereof, such person not being a physician and furnishing the same for use as medicine; and any person who shall kill any fur seal on either of said islands, or in the waters adjacent thereto, without authority of the lessees thereof, and any person who shall molest, disturb, or interfere with said lessees, or either of them, or their agents or employés in the lawful prosecution of their business under the provisions of this act, shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall for each offense on conviction thereof, be punished in the same way and by like penalties as prescribed in the second section of this act. And all vessels, their tackle, apparel, appurtenances, and cargo, whose crews shall be found engaged in any violation of either of the provisions of this section, shall be forfeited to the United States; and if any person or company under any lease herein authorized, shall knowingly kill, or permit to be killed, any number of seals exceeding the number for each island in this act prescribed, such person or company shall, in addition to the penalties and forfeitures aforesaid, also forfeit the whole number of the skins of seals killed in that year, or, in case the same have been disposed of, then said person or company shall forfeit the value of the same, and it shall be the duty of any reveuue officer officially acting as such on either of said islands to seize and destroy any distilled spirits or spiritous liquors found thereon: Provided, That such officer shall make detailed report of his doings to the collector of the port.
SEC. 6. And be it further enacted, That the annual rental to be reserved by said lease shall not be less than fifty thousand dollars per annum; to be secured by deposit of United States bonds to that amount, and in addition thereto a revenue tax as a duty, of two dollars, is hereby laid upon each fur-seal skin taken and shipped from said islands during the continuance of such lease, to be paid into the Treasury of the United States; and the Secretary of the Treasury is hereby empowered and authorized to make all needful rules and regulations for the collection and payment of the same, for the comfort maintenance, education, and protection of the natives of said islands, and also for carrying into full effect all the provisions of this act: Provided further, That the Secretary of the Treasury may terminate any lease given to any person, company, or corporation on full and satisfactory proof of the violation of any of the provisions of this act or the rules and regulations established by him: Provided further, That the Secretary of the Treasury is hereby authorized to deliver to the owners the fur-seal skins now stored on the island, on the payment of one dollar for each of said skins taken and shipped away by said owners.
SEC. 7. And be it further enacted, That the provisions of the seventh and eighth sections of “An act to extend the laws of the United States relating to customs, commerce, and navigation over the territory ceded to the United States by Russia, to establish a collection district thereon, and for other purposes," approved July twenty-seventh, one thousand eight hundred and sixty-eight,” shall be deemed to apply to this act, and all the prosecutions for offenses committed against the provisions of this act, and all other proceedings had because of the violations of the provisions of this act, and which are authorized by said act above mentioned, shall be in accordance with the provisions thereof; and all acts aud parts of acts inconsistent with the provisions of this act are hereby repealed.
SEC. 8. And be it further enacted, That the Congress may at any time hereafter alter, amend, or repeal this act.
Approved July 1, 1870.
REVISED STATUTES RELATING TO ALASKA.
CHAPTER III.-Provisions relating to the unorganized Territory of
1954. ('ustoms, etc., laws extended to
Alaska. 1955. Importation of firearins and dis
tilled spirits may be prohibited. 1956. Killing of fur-bearing animals pro
hibited. 1957. What courts to have jurisdiction of
offenses. 1938. Remission of fines, etc. 1959. St. Paul and St. George islands de
clared special reservations. 1960. Killing of seal upon them prohib
ited except in certain months. 1961. Killing of certain seal prohibited. 1962. Limit to number of seals to be
killed. 1963. Right to take seal may be leased.
of their vessels.
seal tixheries. 1971. Their pay, etc. 1975. Not to be interested in right to take
seals. 1976. Agents may administer certain
oaths and take testimony.
SEC. 1954. The laws of the United States relating to customs, commerce, and navigation, are extended to and over all the mainland, islands, and waters of the territory ceded to the United States by the Emperor of Russia by treaty concluded at Washington on the thirtieth day of March, A. D. one thousand eight hundred and sixty-seven, so far as the same may be applicable thereto.
SEC. 1955. The President shall have the power to restrict and regulate or to prohibit the importation and use of firearms, ammunition, and distilleil spirits into and within the Territory of Alaska; the exportation of the same from any other port or place in the United States, when destined to any port or place in that Territory, and all such arms, ammunition, and distilled spirits exported or attempted to be exported from any port or place in the United States and destined for such Terrftory in violation of any regulations that may be prescribed under this section, and all such arms, ammunition, and distilled spirits landed or attempted to be landed or used at any port or place in the Territory, in violation of such regulations, shall be forfeited; and if the value of the same exceeds four hundred dollars, the vessel upon which the same is found, or from which they have been landed, together with her tackle, apparel, and furniture, and cargo, shall be forfeited; and any person willfully violating such regulations shall be fined not more than five hundred dollars or imprisoned not more than six months. Bonds may be rexuired for a faithful observance of such regulations from the master or owners of any vessel departing from any port in the United States having on board firearms, ammunition, or distilled spirits, when such vessel is destined to any place in the Territory, or if not so destined, when there is reasonable ground of suspicion that such articles are intended to be landed therein in violation of law; and similar bonds may also be required on the landing of any such articles in the Territory from the person to whom the same may be consigned.
SEC. 1956. No person shall kill any otter, mink, marten, sable, or fur seal, or other fur-bearıng 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 two hundred dollars nor more than one thousand dollars, or imprisonment 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.
SEC. 1957. Until otherwise provided by law, all violations of this chapter and of the several laws hereby extended to the Territory of Alaska and the waters thereof committed within limits of the same shall be prosecuted in any district court of the United States in California or Oregon, or in the district courts of Washington; and the collector and deputy collectors appointed for Alaska Territory, and any person authorized in writing by either of them, or by the Secretary of the Treasury, shall have power to arrest persons and seize vessels and merchandise liable to fines, penalties, or forfeitures under this and the other laws extended over the Territory, and to keep and deliver the same to the marshal of some one of such courts; and such courts shall have original jurisdiction, and may take cognizance of all cases arising under this act and the several laws hereby extended over the Territory, and shall proceed therein in the same manner and with the like effect as if such cases had arisen within the district or territory where the proceedings are brought.
SEC. 1958. In all cases of fine, penalty, or forfeiture embraced in the act approved the third March, one thousand seven hundred and ninetyseven, chapter thirteen, or mentioned in any act in addition to or amendatory of such act, that have occurred or may occur in the collection district of Alaska, the Secretary of the Treasury is authorized, if, in his opinion, the fine, penalty, or forfeiture was incurred without will. ful negligence or intention of fraud, to ascertain the facts in such manner and under such regulations as he may deem proper without regard to the provisions of the act above referred to; and upon the facts so to be ascertained he may exercise all the power of remission conferred upon him by that act, as fully as he might have done had such facts been ascertained under and according to the provisions of that act.
SEC. 1959. The islands of Saint Paul and Saint George, in Alaska, are declared a special reservation for Government purposes, and until otherwise provided by law it shall be unlawful for any person to land or remain on either of those islands, except by the authority of the Secretary of the Treasury, and any person found on either of those islands, contrary to the provisions hereof, shall be summarily removed; and it shall be the duty of the Secretary of War to carry this section into effect.
SEC. 1960. It shall be unlawful to kill any fur seal upon the islands of Saint Paul and Saint George, or in the waters adjacent thereto, except during the months of June, July, September, and October in each year; and it shall be unlawful to kill such seals at any time by the use of firearms, or by other means tending to drive the seals away from those islands, but the natives of the islands shall have the privilege of killing such young seals as may be necessary for their own food and