Mining Act from May of 1872 passed through the Forty-Second Congress of the U.S.

"Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That all valuable mineral deposits in lands belonging to the United States, both surveyed and unsurveyed, are hereby declared to be free and open to exploration and purchase, and the lands in which they are found to occupation and purchase, by citizens of the United States and those who have decalred thier intention to become such, under regulations prescribed by law, and according to the local customs or rules of miners, in the several mining-districts, so far as the same are applicable and not onconsistent with the laws of the United States."
As seen in Section 1 of this congressional act from 1872 Alaskan Natives were excluded from claiming ownership to their own land. During this period of history Natives were not accepted as citizens of the Nation and had no land or load claim rights, something that took many years to bring change to.


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