Print #4. Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 1955

32x16
Print #4: Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 1955. 32×16″, 18 oz. scrim weatherproof vinyl.

Text & Citations for Print #4: Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 1955

“The plaintiff urges that the question was inadequately briefed in the Miller case and that for that reason the Court made an erroneous decision. The government itself, in various opinions of its executives relating to this very problem, has taken the position that Alaska Indians had tribal or communal rights in lands, either as aboriginal rights which survived the treaty of 1867, or as rights created by the Acts of 1884, 1891 and 1900. In United States v. Libby, McNeil and Libby, D.C., 107 F.Supp. 697, which case arose after the decision in Miller v. United States, supra, …”
Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 120 F. Supp. 202, 206 (Ct. Cl. 1954), aff’d, 348 U.S. 272, 75 S. Ct. 313, 99 L. Ed. 314 (1955)
“The tribal interest of Tee-hit-ton Indians in Alaskan lands, if such interest survived treaty by which Russia ceded Alaska to the United States, was what is called, in relation to American Indians, “original Indian title” or “Indian right of occupancy” with its weaknesses and imperfections.”
Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 120 F. Supp. 202 (Ct. Cl. 1954), aff’d, 348 U.S. 272, 75 S. Ct. 313, 99 L. Ed. 314 (1955)

“It is petitioner’s contention that its tribal predecessors have continually claimed, occupied, and used the land from time immemorial; that, when Russia took Alaska, the Tlingits had a well developed social order which included a concept of property ownership; that Russia, while it possessed Alaska, in no manner interfered with their claim to the land; that Congress has, by subsequent acts, confirmed and recognized petitioner’s right to occupy the land permanently, and therefore the sale of the timber off such lands constitutes a taking pro tanto of its asserted rights in the area.”
Tee-Hit-Ton Indians v. United States, 348 U.S. 272, 277, 75 S. Ct. 313, 316, 99 L. Ed. 314 (1955)

Image Sources:

  • Photos: ASL-P207-30-1, Alaska State Library U.S. Forest Service Photo Collection. Felled Timber at Helm Bay near Ketchikan, Tongass National Forest, Alaska, 1930.
  • Logs being hauled on a sleigh by a team of horses [Alaska] … . Library of Congress, [between ca. 1900 and ca. 1930], LOT 11453-1, no. 62.

“WordWrap 2017: Historical Reflections on the Law of the Land.” Created by Lisa Link for the Alaska Sesquicentennial Commemorative Exhibit, “Voices of Change: Perspectives on the Transfer of Alaska from Russia to the United States” at Sitka National Historical Park.