HALLOWELL v. U S(1911)
[221 U.S. 317, 318] Mr. Thomas L. Sloan for Hallowell.
Assistant Attorney General Harr for the United States.
Mr. Justice Day delivered the opinion of the court:
Simeon Hallowell, plaintiff in error, was convicted in the district court of the United States for the district of Nebraska upon the charge of having introduced whisky into the Indian country, in violation of the act of January 30, 1897. 29 Stat. at L. 506, chap. 109. After sentence, Hallowell took the case to the circuit court of appeals for the eighth circuit, and that court certified to this court the question hereinafter set forth.
The certificate sets forth an agreed statement of facts upon which the case was tried in the district court, as follows:
Upon this statement the circuit court of appeals certified to this court the following question:
Under the act of August 7, 1882, first mentioned in the certificate, provision was made for the allotment of lands in severalty among the Indians. Section 6 of the act provides in part: [221 U.S. 317, 321] 'Sec. 6. That upon the approval of the allotments provided for in the preceding section by the Secretary of the Interior, he shall cause patents to issue therefor in the name of the allottees, which patents shall be of the legal effect and declare that the United States does and will hold the land thus allotted for the period of twenty-five years in trust for the sole use and benefit of the Indians to whom such allotment shall have been made, or, in case of his decease, of his heirs, according to the laws of the state of Nebraska, and that, at the expiration of said period, the United States will convey the same by patent to said Indian or his heirs, as aforesaid, in fee, discharged of said trust, and free of all charge or encumbrance whatsoever.'
As appears from the certificate upon which this case is submitted, the trust period named in the section had not expired at the time the alleged offense was committed.
Section 7 of the act of August 7, 1882, provides:
Section 6 of the act of February 8, 1887, referred to in the question propounded, provides:
It is apparent that, at the time of the commission of the alleged offense, the place wherein it was alleged to have been committed was a part of lands allotted to an Indian; that the title to the lands allotted was still held in trust by the United States for the benefit of the Indian to whom the allotment had been made; that the plaintiff in error had been declared to be a citizen of the United States, and entitled to the rights, privileges, and immunities of such citizenship, and entitled to the benefit of the laws, civil and criminal, of the state of Nebraska, in which the Indian allotment was situated, and upon which the offense is alleged to have been committed.
The act under which the conviction was had was passed January 30, 1897 (29 Stat. at L. 506, chap. 109), and provides in part:
Obviously this act in terms embraced the acts stated in the agreed statement of facts, which we have set forth above. The liquor was introduced into the Indian country and into an Indian allotment, while the title to the same was still held in trust by the government.
The contention of the plaintiff in error is that the act cannot be applied to him because, at the time charged, he had become a citizen, and not subject to such regulation as a ward of the government; and furthermore, that the territory in question had become subject to the jurisdiction of the state of Nebraska, to whose police regulations upon the subject of the liquor traffic he was alone amenable.
When this case was certified here, Re Heff, 197 U.S. 488 , 49 L. ed. 848, 25 Sup. Ct. Rep. 506, had been decided, but the subsequent cases of the United States v. Celestine, 215 U.S. 278 , 54 L. ed. 195, 30 Sup. Ct. Rep. 93, and United States v. Sutton, 215 U.S. 291 , 54 L. ed. 200, 30 Sup. Ct. Rep. 116, were yet undetermined. We had occasion to consider these cases in Tiger v. Western Invest. Co., 221 U.S. 286 , 55 L. ed. --, 31 Sup. Ct. Rep. 578, and need not here repeat what was there said concerning them.
In United States v. Sutton, supra, it was held that a conviction could be had under the act of January 30th, 1897 (29 Stat. at L. supra), for the offense of introducing liquor into an Indian reservation. It is true that in the Sutton Case the reservation was within the limits of the state of Washington, and that state had disclaimed jurisdiction over Indian lands, which were to remain under the absolute jurisdiction and control of the Congress of the United States, and it was held that while this fact did not deprive the state of the right of punishing crimes committed on such reservation by other than Indians or against Indians. ( Draper v. United States, 164 U.S. 240 , 41 L. ed. 419, 17 Sup. Ct. Rep. 107), that where jurisdiction and control over Indian lands remained in the United States, Congress had the right to forbid the intro- [221 U.S. 317, 324] duction of liquor into such territory, and to provide for the punishment of those found guilty thereof. Couture v. United States, 207 U.S. 581 , 52 L. ed. 350, 28 Sup. Ct. Rep. 259, was cited, where a conviction for introducing liquor into the Indian country was affirmed.
In the case at bar, the United States had not parted with the title to the lands, but still held them in trust for the Indians. In that situation its power to make rules and regulations respecting such territory was ample. Van Brocklin v. Anderson (Van Brocklin v. Tennessee) 117 U.S. 151, 167 , 29 S. L. ed. 845, 850, 6 Sup. Ct. Rep. 670; Gibson v. Chouteau, 13 Wall. 92, 99, 20 L. ed. 534, 536; Light v. United States, 220 U.S. 523 , 55 L. ed. --, 31 Sup. Ct. Rep. 485
It is a result of the recent cases decided in this court (Couture v. United States, 207 U.S. 581 , 52 L. ed. 350, 28 Sup. Ct. Rep. 259; United States v. Celestine, 215 U.S. 278 , 54 L. ed. 195, 30 Sup. Ct. Rep. 93; United States v. Sutton, 215 U.S. 291 , 54 L. ed. 200, 30 Sup. Ct. Rep. 116, and Tiger v. Western Realty Co., 221 U.S. 286 , 55 L. ed. --, 31 Sup. Ct. Rep. 578) that the mere fact that citizenship has been conferred upon Indians does not necessarily end the right or duty of the United States to pass laws in their interest as a dependent people. A discussion of the matter in those cases renders further comment unnecessary now. Furthermore, in the present case liquor was introduced into an allotment the title to which was still held by the United States, and concerning which it had the power to make rules and regulations under the authority of the Constitution of the United States. While for many purposes the jurisdiction of the state of Nebraska had attached, and the Indian as a citizen was entitled to the rights, privileges, and immunities of citizenship, still the United States, within its own territory and in the interest of the Indians, had jurisdiction to pass laws protecting such Indians from the evil results of intoxicating liquors, as was done in the act of January 30, 1897, which made it an offense to introduce intoxicating liquors into such Indian country, including an Indian allotment. In this view, the question certified will be answered in the affirmative, and it is so ordered.