The Federal Reporter with Key-Number Annotations, Volume 256: Cases Argued and Determined in the Circuit Courts of Appeals and District Courts of the United States, May-July, 1919. Page: 9
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LA MOTTE V. UNITED STATES U
and to his mother, a white nonmember of the tribe, and the father
acquired by purchase the mother's interest from her grantee, and sub-
sequently leased the entire land, the lease was valid as to the interest
coming through the mother and invalid as to that descending to the
father; (3) that where lands descended from a noncompetent allottee
to five heirs, three of whom were noncompetent (one having since
died and his estate being in administration) and two had received com-
petency certificates before the inheritance; and the estate had been ad-
ministered and partition proceedings in progress; and the competent
heirs had conveyed their interests to appellants; that appellants were
enjoined from leasing the interest of the noncompetents or "from oc-
cupying or using the premises, or any part thereof, without the ap-
proval of the Secretary of the Interior"; (4) that where land descend-
ed from a noncompetent allottee to three heirs, two of which are non-
competent and one a nonmember of the tribe (lacking enrollment,
though apparently a son), and thereafter through the death of the latter
his interest descends to one of the other of the above two heirs, his
mother, and she sold this latter interest to appellants who occupy and
use the land with her consent, the other heir being a minor; that ap-
pellants are the owners of the one-third interest purchased but are en-
joined from "in any manner occupying or using the said lands, or any
portion thereof, or from inclosing same, or in any manner dealing with
said lands, or any part thereof, without the consent of the Secretary
of the Interior, or without procuring a lease upon the undivided one-
third [two-thirds?] interest which is restricted."
The decree also found that there was no duty on the part of the
government to protect from trespass, not injurious to the freehold, land
leased in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Secretary
of the Interior and upon which the lessee was paying the rental due.
This was an instance of such land being adjacent to or surrounded by
land belonging to appellants which had all been inclosed as a large pas-
ture by an outside fence with no fence between this leased land and
that of appellants; the trespass being by grazing cattle. The court
denied a motion to dismiss the bill for defect in parties (in that the
noncompetent Osage Indians were the real and sole parties in inter-
est) and for lack of equity (in that no grounds for injunctive relief were
stated and the existence of an adequate remedy at law by ejectment).
The various assignments of error cover all of the instances present-
ed by the above statement. In their entirety they present for deter-
mination the broad questions of the powers and duties generally of the
government in the protection of Osage Indian allottees and landown-
ers and their lessees respecting agricultural and grazing leases and, in
particular, the powers and duties of the Secretary of the Interior in
[1, 2] In dealing with tribal Indians in respect to severalty lands the
United States has dual sources of authority. In the first place it may,
as owner of the fee, impose such conditions as it sees fit in its grant
to the Indian. In the second place it may, as the guardian of a peo-
ple in a state of pupilage, impose such restrictions as seem advisable
for the protection and welfare of such wards in the enjoyment or own-
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The Federal Reporter with Key-Number Annotations, Volume 256: Cases Argued and Determined in the Circuit Courts of Appeals and District Courts of the United States, May-July, 1919., legislative document, 1919; Saint Paul, Minnesota. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc38827/m1/23/: accessed April 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.