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HINING CLAIMSContinued

COMMON VARIETIES OF MINERALS
1. A deposit of building stone fractured to a large extent into regular

rectangular shapes and sizes which are suitable for use in con-
struction without further cutting or splitting and which exist in
a greater proportion in the deposit than in other deposits of the
same stone in the vicinity is not an uncommon variety of building
stone which is locatable under the mining laws because it has a
special and distinct value where it appears that the regularly
shaped stone is usually, by customer preference, mixed with ir-
regularly shaped stone from the claim in construction usage and
that the regularly shaped stone is not shown to have any uses over
and above those of deposits of ordinary building stone in the

locality
CONTESTS
1. A decision declaring a mining claim null and void is conclusive and

will not be reopened and vacated in the absence of a strong legal
or equitable basis warranting reconsideration even though the
basis for the cancellation has been found, in other proceedings, to
be erroneous, where the claimant, who received notice of adverse
charges against his claim, fails to answer the charges as required
and fails to appeal or otherwise attack the decision declaring his
claim invalid and takes no action with respect to the claim for

many years---
2. Where after an application for a State exchange is filed it appears that

the selected lands are covered by apparently valid mining claims,
the State, if it denies the validity of the claims, is to be allowed

a hearing on the issue of whether or not the claims are valid------
3. A determination of the invalidity of a mining claim by the manager

of a land office is proper in a Government contest when the claim-
ant fails to answer within the period allowed by the depart-
mental rules of practice; it is no excuse that the contestee has
brought an action in the Federal district court to enjoin the
contest proceedings and secured a temporary restraining order
when thereafter the restraining order is dissolved and, although
the contestee appeals to the circuit court, he fails to have the in-

junction restored or a new one granted..
4. Where a mining contest was initiated by this Department and the

contestees did not file an answer but brought an action to enjoin
the proceedings in the Federal courts and secured a temporary
restraining order against the proceedings, but failed to obtain a
further stay after the district court dissolved the restraining order
or otherwise to relieve themselves of the necessity of filing an
answer to the contest complaint, the Secretary will nonetheless
entertain a petition to have a belated answer accepted where it
appears that the litigation was continued in the appellate courts
on the assumption of all parties and the courts that the contest
proceedings had been held in abeyance and no rights of third

parties are affected.---
5. A determination of the invalidity of a mining claim by the manager

of a land office is proper in a private contest when the claimant

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MINING CLAIMS-Continued
CONTESTS-Continued

fails to answer within the period allowed by the departmental
rules of practice; it is no excuse that the contestee has brought an
action in the Federal district court to enjoin the contest proceed-
ings and secured a temporary restraining order when thereafter
the restraining order is dissolved and, although the contestee
appeals to the circuit court, he fails to have the injunction restored

or a new one granted.--
6. The Departmental regulation providing that, where a timely answer

is not filed in a contest proceeding, the case will be decided on the
basis of the allegations in the complaint cannot be waived in the

case of a private contest_
DETERMINATION OF VALIDITY
1. Although a mining claim may have been valid in the past because of a

discovery on the claim of a valuable deposit of mineral, the min-
ing claim will lose its validity if the mineral deposit ceases to be

valuable because of a change in economic conditions--------
2. Mining claims located for manganese must be declared null and void

for lack of a discovery where, although manganese was sold from
some of the claims and other claims in the vicinity during World
War II and the post-war period when a Government buying pro-
gram was in existence, the evidence shows that since the end of
the buying program in 1959 the price of manganese has dropped
50 percent and sales of domestic manganese have ceased and
there is no reasonable prospect of a future market, the need for

manganese being supplied by higher grade imported manganese--
3. A decision declaring a mining claim null and void is conclusive and

will not be reopened and vacated in the absence of a strong legal
or equitable basis warranting reconsideration even though the
basis for the cancellation has been found, in other proceedings,
to be erroneous, where the claimant, who received notice of ad-
rerse charges against his claim, fails to answer the charges
as required and fails to appeal or otherwise attack the decision
declaring his claim invalid and takes no action with respect to the

claim for many years.-----
4. To validate a mining claim covering minerals for which a market must

be shown, it must appear that the minerals probably exist on the

claim in such quantities as will justify extraction..
DISCOVERY
1. Although a mining claim may have been valid in the past because of

a discovery on the claim of a valuable deposit of mineral, the min-
ing claim will lose its validity if the mineral deposit ceases to

be valuable because of a change in economic conditions------
2. Mining claims located for manganese must be declared null and void

for lack of a discovery where, although manganese was sold from
some of the claims and other claims in the ricinity during World
War II and the post-war period when a Government buying
program was in existence, the eridence shows that since the end
of the buying program in 1959 the price of manganese has dropped
50 percent and sales of domestie manganese hare ceased and

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MINING CLAIMS-Continued
DISCOVERY-Continued

there is no reasonable prospect of a future market, the need for

manganese being supplied by higher grade imported manganese-3. To validate a mining claim covering minerals for which a market

must be shown, it must appear that the minerals probably exist

on the claim in such quantities as will justify extraction.---
4. A showing of the probable existence of minerals in such quantities as

will justify the further expenditure of labor and money with a
reasonable prospect of success in developing a valuable mine
must be made to meet the test of discovery under the mining

laws
5. Where mining claimants have not shown that deposits of talc and

silica on their claims probably exist in sufficient quantities to
justify a prudent man in spending his labor and means with a
reasonable prospect of developing a valuable mine, they have
not made a discovery of valuable mineral deposits within the

meaning of the mining laws.---
HEARINGS
1. A hearing is not required by departmental practice or by the require-

ments of due process on the rejection of an application for a patent
on mining claims which, over 25 years before the patent applica-
tion was filed, were declared null and void in adverse proceedings
or by a default decision after notice of charges against the
claims and an opportunity for a hearing thereon were given

the record title owner of the claims.-
LOCATION
1. Because Revised Statute 2320 provides that no lode mining claim

shall extend more than 300 feet on each side of the middle of the
vein at the surface, a patent applicant should indicate the direc-
tion of the vein and adjust his survey accordingly if the course
of the vein diverges from a line through the center of the claim
and one of the side lines is more than 300 feet from the center of

the vein.---
LODE CLAIMS
1. Because Revised Statute 2320 provides that no lode mining claim

shall extend more than 300 feet on each side of the middle of the
vein at the surface, a patent applicant should indicate the direction
of the vein and adjust his survey accordingly if the course of the
vein diverges from a line through the center of the claim and one

of the side lines is more than 300 feet from the center of the vein.2. The Department has no power to issue a mineral patent to any surface

ground exceeding 300 feet in width on each side of the middle
of the vein or lode, and a patent so issued is void as to the excess

over 300 feet and is subject to collateral attack...
MILL SITES
1. Land withdrawn for reclamation purposes can be opened to location

under the mining laws only where the land is known or believed
to be valuable for minerals; consequently, nonmineral land in a

reclamation withdrawal cannot, in the absence of other considera-
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MINING CLAIMS Continued
MILL SITES-Continued

tions, be opened for location of a mill site, which is locatable only

on nonmineral land.
2. In opening reclamation withdrawn land to mining location it is neces-

sary that each 10-acre subdivision be mineral in character but it
is not required that every acre of the 10-acre tract be mineral in
character ; consequently where a tract of land is open to mining
location and part of the land is nonmineral in character, that part

of the land can be included in a mill site-----
3. A mill site claim is properly declared invalid where the claim is not

occupied or used for mining or milling purposes---
4. The use of a rehabilitated structure on land embraced in a mill site

claim as a base for occasional prospecting activities on nearby
patented lode claims and the intention to use the land in the future
for workmen's housing and an assay office presumably when the
claims are developed are not sufficient to comply with the
requirements of section 2337 of the Revised Statutes for obtaining

a mill site-----
5. A mill site is properly declared invalid where the claim is not occu-

pied or used for mining or milling purposes--
MINERAL SURVEYS
1. Because Revised Statute 2320 provides that no lode mining claim shall

extend more than 300 feet on each side of the middle of the vein
at the surface, a patent applicant should indicate the direction of
the vein and adjust his survey accordingly if the course of the
vein diverges from a line through the center of the claim and one of

the side lines is more than 300 feet from the center of the vein.---
PATENT
1. The proceedings leading to the cancellation of a mining claim will not

be reopened many years after the decision has become final in the
absence of a compelling legal or equitable basis warranting re-
consideration and an application for patent on a mining claim is
properly rejected where, more than sixteen years before the patent
application was filed, the claim had been declared null and void

and thereafter canceled.-
2. The Department has no power to issue a mineral patent to any sur-

face ground exceeding 300 feet in width on each side of the middle
of the vein or lobe, and a patent so issued is void as to the excess

over 300 feet and is subject to collateral attack..
SPECIAL ACTS
1. The purchaser under a contract of sale of an undivided two-thirds

interest in a mining claim may file the verified statement required

of a mining claimant by section 5(a) of the act of July 23, 1955---
WITHDRAWN LAND
1. Land withdrawn for reclamation purposes can be opened to location

under the mining laws only where the land is known or believed
to be valuable for minerals; consequently, nonmineral land in a
reclamation withdrawal cannot, in the absence of other considera-
tions, be opened for location of a mill site, which is locatable only
on nonmineral land.--

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MINING CLAIMS-Continued

WITHDRAWN LANDS—Continued
2. In opening reclamation withdrawn land to mining location it is

necessary that each 10-acre subdivision be mineral in character
but it is not required that every acre of the 10-acre tract be
mineral in character; consequently where a tract of land is open
to mining location and part of the land is nonmineral in character,

that part of the land can be included in a mill site-
NOTICE

141

1. In considering whether an assignee of an oil and gas lease was a bona

fide purchaser and entitled to protection in accordance with the
bona fide purchaser provisions of the Mineral Leasing Act, as
amended, the basic question is whether he in good faith and for
value acquired his interest without notice of a superior right to
the lease; he will not be considered as having constructive or im-
puted notice that an offeror whose offer was junior to that for
which the lease issued had a right to the lease superior to the
lessee, if he acted prudently, even though an extremely cautious
person might have a right to have the voidable lease canceled.---

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OIL AND GAS LEASES

GENERALLY
1. A protest by a junior offeror in a drawing of simultaneously filed oil

and gas lease offers which charges disqualification of a senior
offeror because the senior offeror is married to another offeror so
that neither was actually the sole party in interest in the separate
offers filed is properly dismissed in the absence of any proof that
either of the two offerors in question was not acting in his own
behalf and that under the law of the State in which the land
applied for lies a married person cannot hold or acquire prop-

erty for his sole benefit without the other spouse's consent-----
2. Although a junior offeror may have been the first qualified applicant

for an oil and gas lease, if a lease was mistakenly issued to the
senior offeror and it is assigned to a bona fide purchaser and the
assignment is filed before the land office records show any action
taken against the lease, the interests of the bona fide purchaser
will be protected in accordance with the 1959 and 1960 amend.
ments of the Mineral Leasing Act and the junior offeror's offer

must be rejected ----
3. In considering whether an assignee of an oil and gas lease was a

bona fide purchaser and entitled to protection in accordance with
the bona fide purchaser provisions of the Mineral Leasing Act, as
amended, the basic question is whether he in good faith and for
value acquired his interest without notice of a superior right to
the lease; he will not be considered as having constructive or
imputed notice that an offeror whose offer was junior to that for
which the lease issued had a right to the lease superior to the
lessee, if he acted prudently, even though an extremely cautious
person might have ascertained that the junior offeror might have a
right to have the voidable lease canceled..

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