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Issues discussed by the Committee

The Committee's establishment is related to the July 1, 1862 law authorizing the construction of a transcontinental railroad between the Missouri River and California. Construction for the railroad was to be aided by land grants and Government loans.

The Committee focused much of its attention on the establishment of specific railroads to various parts of the country: Northern Pacific Railroad, Southern Pacific Railroad, Central Pacific Railroad, Union Pacific Railroad.

The Committee granted twenty- or fifty-mile strips, alternate sections of public land for each mile of track that was built. As a result, the public lands

a of the West began to look more like a checkerboard of public/private lands.

On May 10, 1869, the Union Pacific Railroad joined with the Central Pacific at Promontory, Utah, linking the continent with the Transcontinental railroad.

The Committee archive files contain a letter dated October 1, 1867, for George M. Pullman to furnish sleeping cars to the Union Pacific Railroad .

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Primaryjurisdiction was listed as issues relating to the railroads and telegraphic lines between the Mississippi River and the Pacific coast.

Committee on Mines and Mining

(1865-1946)
39th — 79nd Congresses

History and Jurisdiction

The Committee on Mines and Mining was established on December 19, 1865 to focus on mining interests.

As a result of the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946, the Committee on Mines and Mining was abolished and its jurisdiction was included into the Committee on Public Lands.

Issues Discussed by the Committee

The Committee on Mines and Mining exercised jurisdiction over the Geological Survey, the Bureau of Mines, the establishment of mining schools and mining experimental stations, mineral land laws, the welfare mine workers, mineral contracts connected with war, and the mining of radium ore.

Issues within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Mines and Mining include:

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Relief in cased of mineral contract connected with the prosecution

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Mining laws within the Territories.
Mining of radium ore, including withdrawal from public lands, and
the conservation of supplies.
Welfare of miners.
Work relating to the Geological Survey.
Fuel yards in the District of Columbia.
Establishment of a bureau of mines and of geology.
Establishment of schools of mines and mining experiment stations.
Alien ownership of mineral lands.
Mineral land, and land claims.
Mining debris in California.

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The Committee had reported to the House legislation relating to:

1882 Authorizing claimants to mines to make certain affidavits.

Authorizing an appropriation to enable the Geological Survey to
procure statistics in regard to mines and mining, and make analyses of
coal, iron, and oil.
Authorized the Geological Survey to examine mines and mining

interests including coal, iron and oil.
1886 Establish the bureau of mines and mining.
1888 Issues relating to alien ownership of mineral lands.

Mining debris in California and as to the California Debris Commission.

Alien ownership of mineral lands. 1890 Protection of the lives of miners. 1891 Mineral land laws and claims and entries thereunder. 1892 Proposal to establish an executive department of mines and mining.

Create an executive department of mines and mining.

Creation of California Debris Commission. 1901 Protection of the lives of miners.

Issues relating to miners in the Territories. 1904 Suits in mining claims, mineral veins withing boundaries of placer

claims.
Exploration and purchase of mines within boundaries of private land

claims. 1905 Protection ofminers within the Territories. Mining debris in California. 1906 Authorizing examinations of the black sands of the Pacific coast, and

providing for investigation of the water resources of the United States. Bureau of Geology and Mining.

Examination of black sands of the Pacific coast. 1911 granting to certain employees of the United States the right to receive

from it compensation for injuries sustained in the course of their Welfare of mine workers. 1914 Encourage the prospecting, mining, and treatment of radium-bearing

ores in lands belonging to the United States, for the purpose of securing
an adequate supply of radium for Government and other hospitals in the
United States.
Authorizing the President to withdraw public lands containing
carbonite, pitchblende, or other radium-bearing ores and minerals.
Regulation of mining of radium ores.
Authorizing the Secretary of the Interior to withdraw from entry any

public lands containing radium. 1919 Relief of contracts connected with the prosecution of war. 1921 Application of mining laws to the Territories. Government fuel yards

in the District of Columbia.
Authorizing the Secretary of the Interior to purchase necessary lands for
use of the Government fuel yards, for the erection of a garage, and
payment by check by branches of the Federal Government for fuel
furnished.
Changing the period for doing work on unpatented mineral claims for

the calendar year to the fiscal year ending June 30 each year. 1924

Authorize payment of claims under provisions of the war mineral relief
act.
Suspend the requirements of annual assessment work on certain mining
claims for a period of three years.
Authorize the payment of claims under the provisions of the war

mineral relief act. 1925 Modify and amend the mining laws in their application to the Territory

of Alaska.
Sale of certain mineral lands in Pennsylvania.
Suspend annual assessment work on certain mining claims for a period

of three years.

Geological Survey, and Bureau of Soils investigation of potash deposits.

Committee on Irrigation and Arid Lands
(Committee on Irrigation and Reclamation)

(1893 - 1946)
53th — 79th Congresses

History and Jurisdiction

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Created on August 18, 1893, as a full Committee of the House, the Committee. In 1924, the Committee on Irrigation and Arid Lands was renamed the Committee on Irrigation and Reclamation.

In 1946, under the Legislative Reorganization Act of 1946, the Committee on Irrigation and Reclamation, was abolished and its jurisdictions was included into the Committee on Public Lands.“

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Issues within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Irrigation and Arid Lands include:

Irrigation of arid lands.
Reclamation in general.
Preemption and disposition of lands in reclaimed and irrigated
projects.
Interstate compacts relative to apportionment of waters for
irrigation purposes.
Disposal of drainage waters from irrigation projects.

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Issues discussed by the Committee

The Committee's primary focus is the disposition of land for the purposes of constructing irrigation and reclaiming the land for agricultural purposes.

1893 subjects relating to the irrigation of arid lands.
1902 appropriating the receipts from the disposal and sale of public lands in

certain States and Territories to the construction of irrigation works for
the reclamation of arid lands.
Newlands Reclamation Act, also known as the National Reclamation
Act, which authorized Federal construction of irrigation projects.
Proceeds from the sale of public lands in the Western States were to
finance the construction and maintenance of the projects.

Established the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation. 1904 Legislation to use "earth,, stone, and timber on forest reservations

(National Forests) and public lands for irrigation works.” Thus
allowing the natural resources on federal lands to be used for the
construction of irrigation projects.
Use of earth, stone, and timber on forest reservations and public lands

for irrigation works. 1905 Dams across the Yellowstone River. 1910 Homestead entries on lands to be irrigated under provisions of the

June 17, 1902 Act. 1912 Disposition of townsites in connection with reclamation projects. 1917 Application of the reclamation law to irrigation districts.

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U.S. Congress, Constitution, Jefferson's Manual, and the Rules of the House of

1919 Disposal of certain waste and drainage water from the Yuma Project in

the State of Arizona. 1922 Provide for the application of the reclamation law to irrigation districts.

Encourage the development of the agricultural resources of the United States through Federal and State cooperation, giving preference in the matter of employment and the establishment of rural homes to those

who serve with the military and naval forces. 1924 Legislation pertaining to reclamation in general. 1925 Provide for aided and directed settlements on Government land in

irrigation projects; and for refunds to veterans of the World War of certain amounts paid by them under Federal irrigation projects. Federal-State cooperation to develop agricultural resources. Refinds to veterans of the World War on certain amounts paid by them under

Federal irrigation projects. 1926 Authorize payments for municipal improvements n reclamation

projects.
Granting the consent of Congress to compacts or agreements between
the States of Idaho and Wyoming with respect to the division and
apportionment of the waters of the Snake River and other streams in
which such States are jointly interested.
Examination and report on the condition and possible development and
reclamation of certain

swamp

lands. Authorize the Secretary of the Interior to employ engineers for

consultation in connection with the construction of dams for irrigation. 1928 Authorized the Boulder Canyon (later renamed Hoover Dam) Project. 1930s During the Depression and the Dust Bowl, the Committee focused its

attention on creating irrigation projects and enhance agriculture.

Committee on Insular Affairs

(1 893 - 1946)

79th Congresses

53th

History and Jurisdiction

The Committee on Insular Affairs was created in response to the Treaty of Paris (December 10, 1898) which ended the Spanish-American War. With the Treaty of Paris, Spain ceded control over the Philippine Islands, Puerto Rico (Purto Rico) and Guam to the United States, and relinquished her sovereignty over Cuba.

On December 5, 1899, Mr. James A. Tawney, Minnesota, introduced a resolution to establish the Committee on Insular Affairs, and the Committee was established on December 8, 1899.

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