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the preparation of data and reports concerning controversial matters and claims of all kinds made by contractors in connection with vessels under construction, consulting with Naval Constructor Robinson when technical questions are involved; supervision of progress and similar routine reports in connection with new vessels, and with payment schedules and bills for payments on ships building by contract, also general supervision of financial records of vessels under construction; questions affecting the bureau in connection with navy-yard manufacturing and repair plants; analysis of costs of work at navy yards; and general miscellaneous duties as assistant to chief constructor as assigned from time to time.
Ackerson, J. L., naval constructor, United States Navy, with rank of lieutenant. Pay, $3.200 per annum. Assistant to Naval Constructor R. H. M. Robinson, United States Navy, particularly as regards the routine work and organization of the drawing room ; the scrutiny of plans of ships building and under repair, with special attention to ventilation, drainage and flooding, turrets and armor, auxiliaries and fittings; and the electrical work under this bureau. Land, E. S., naval constructor, United States Navy, with rank of lieutenant. Pay, $3,200 per annum. This officer has charge of matters relating to requisitions for and purchase of materials, and of such equipment as is covered by allowance lists, including small boats, research work in connection with materials and the preparation of standard specifications and tests of same; placing of contracts; also passes upon allowance lists for vessels; ship's requisitions for supplies and equipage; surveys and work in connection with the inspection of all material entering into the hulls of vessels. He has charge of the work done by steel inspectors, timber inspectors, etc., under the bureau; also of the monufacture of anchors and cables; the supplying and fitting of rope, cordage, rigging, sails, awnings, canvas, and flags; the supplying of galley ranges, steam cookers, and other permanent galley fittings. He consults with Naval Constructor Robinson with regard to new designs as affected by the above articles, and with Naval Constructor Du Bose as regards repairs to these articles on ships in commission. He is a member of the tool-steel board and of various other boards in connection with the above work as assigned.
Howard, H. S., assistant naval constructor, United States Navy, with rank of lieutenant. Pay, $2,880 per annum. Assistant to Naval Constructor R. H. M. Robinson, United States Navy, particularly as regards work in connection with the design and construction of submarines, and as regards general work in the drawing room.
Gawne, J. O., assistant naval constructor, United States Navy, with rank of lieutenant. Pay, $2,880 per annum. Assistant to Naval Constructor E. S. Land, United States Navy, particularly as regards surveys of material, and routine work in connection with requisitions and manufacture requests for material from navy yards.
DUTIES OF OFFICERS IN THE OFFICE OF THE JUDGE ADVOCATE GENERAL.
Capt. Robert L. Russell, Judge Advocate General of the Navy. Pay, $5,000.
The duties of the Judge Advocate General of the Navy are as follows: To revise and report upon the legal features of and have recorded the proceedings of all courts-martial, courts of inquiry, boards of investigation, inquest, and boards for the examination of officers for retirement and promotion in the naval service; to prepare charges and specifications for courts-martial and the necessary orders convening courts-martial in cases where such courts are ordered by the Secretary of the Navy; to prepare general orders promulgating the final action of the reviewing authority in court-martial cases; to prepare the necessary orders convening courts of inquiry and boards for the examination of officers for promotion and retirement, and for the examination of candidates for appointment as commissioned officers in the Navy other than midshipmen, and to conduct all official correspondence relating to such courts and boards. It is also the duty of the Judge Advocate General to examine and report upon all questions relating to rank and precedence, to promotions and retirements, and those relating to the validity of the proceedings in court-martial cases; all matters relating to the supervision and control of naval prisons and prisoners: disciplinary barracks and detentioners; the removal of the mark of desertion; the correction of records of service and reporting thereupon in the Regular or Volunteer Navy; certification of discharge in true name; pardons; bills and resolutions introduced in Congress relating to the personnel and referred to
the department for report, and the drafting and interpretation of statutes relating to the personnel; references to the Comptroller of the Treasury with regard to pay and allowances of the personnel; questions involving points of law concerning the personnel; proceedings in the civil courts in all cases concerning the personnel as such; and to conduct the correspondence respecting the foregoing duties, including the preparation for submission to the Attorney General of all questions relating to subjects coming under his own cognizance which the Secretary of the Navy may direct to be so referred.
Lieut. Commander E. R. Pollock, United States Navy, assistant to the Judge Advocate General, and Lieut. Commander E. R Pollock United States Navy. Pay, $4,000.
Lieut. Charles M. Austin, United States Navy. P:1y, $2.880.
Preparation of charges and specifications to be preferred by the Secretary of the Navy against officers and enlisted men of the Navy and Marine Corps for trial by general court-martial; preparation of letters trar.smitting such charges and specifications to commanding officers for delivery to the accused; preparation of indorsements transmitting original papers in support of charges and specifications to judge advocates of general courts-martial; reviewing records of proceedings of courts of inquiry, boards of investigation, and boards of inquest, involving the personnel of the Navy and Marine Corps; preparation of indorsements submitting records of courts of inquiry to the Bureau of Navigation, Navy Department, for comment as to disciplinary proceedings; preparation of precepts convening general courts-martial and courts of inquiry, and preparation of letters and telegrams making changes in the personnel thereof; requisitions for prison supplies; miscellaneous matters relating to the administration of naval prisons; publication of digest of decisions for use of courtsmartial; keeping record of courts of inquiry and general (ourt-martial charges and specifications, with complete data relating thereto; keeping data for annual report of the Judge Advocate General concerning the foregoing subjects; keeping record of the personnel of courts-martial and courts of inquiry; keeping card-index record of current forms for use in preparing general court-martial charges and specifications, and miscellaneous information pertaining thereto; conducting other necessary correspondence in connection with the foregoing duties.
Capt. Arthur E. Harding, United States Marine Corps. Pay, $3,120.
Reviewing records of proceedings of all summary courts-martial and deck courts; returning records to summary courts-martial and deck courts for revision; handling requests for restoration of summary court-martial prisoners to duty on probation; requests for clemency from men tried by summary courtmartial and deck courts; preparing memoranda to the Bureau of Navigation and the commandant, United States Marine Corps, in summary court-martial cases involving bad conduct discharge; keeping card index record of all trials by summary courts-martial and deck courts; keeping record of summary courtmartial prisoners on probation; writing letters restoring probationers to duty unconditionally; answering inquiries, concerning men tried by summary courtsmartial and deck courts; reports and miscellaneous correspondence relating to summary courts-martial and deck courts; handling, or assisting in handling, work assigned to others in the office when necessary; preparing data for annual report of the Judge Advocate General; binding and keeping records of summary and deck courts in loose-leaf devices; preparing the necessary orders convening boards for the examination of officers for promotion and retirement and for the examination of candidates for appointment as commissioned officers in the Navy other than midshipmen, and conducting all official correspondence relating to such boards; handling correspondence relative to the removal of the mark of desertion; the correction of records of service and reporting thereupon in the Regular and Volunteer Navy; and certification of discharge in true name.
Lieut. Walter B. Woodson, United States Navy. Pay, $2,880.
Handling requests for clemency in cases of general court-martial prisoners in confinement; requests for pardons from officers and enlisted men in the service or who have been discharged therefrom; correspondence with former members of the service regarding their trials by general and summary courts; correspondence with persons writing in behalf of general and summary court prisoners; preparation of memoranda for information of the Assistant Secretary in replying to communications on the same subject; preparation of questions for submission to the Comptroller of the Treasury for decision; furnishing copies
of general court-martial records to parties entitled thereto; correspondence with city officials concerning alleged destitute condition of families of general courtmartial prisoners; correspondence relating to appointment and discharge of female nurses; keeping record of pardons recommended; keeping record of copies of general court-martial records sent out; correspondence with the President and Department of Justice concerning requests for pardons; typewriting in connection with the foregoing duties; miscellaneous correspondence with the Marine Corps.
Capt. Arthur P. Crist, United States Marine Corps, retired. Pay, $2,640. Lieut. (Junior Grade) Leslie E. Bratton, United States Navy. Pay, $2,400.
Reviewing records of proceedings of general courts-martial; correspondence with general courts-martial concerning cases returned to such courts for revision; preparation of indorsements referring records of proceedings of general courts-martial to the Bureau of Navigation for comment as to disciplinary features; preparation of indorsements submitting general courtmartial records to the Secretary of the Navy, with recommendation as to action thereupon; preparation of remarks upon legal features of trials by general court-martial, concerning errors committed by the court in admitting or excluding evidence, errors in procedure, errors in findings or sentence, etc.; preparation of letters to presidents of general courts-martial embodying such remarks and statement of the Secretary's action thereupon; preparation of memoranda to the Bureau of Navigation, Commandant United States Marine Corps, Auditor for the Navy Department, commanding officers of prisons and naval disciplinary barracks, and commanding officers at place of trial in each case tried by general court-martial; preparation of general court-martial orders promulgating the action in cases of officers convicted; preparing letters of reprimand as required by the sentence of general courts-martial; preparation of monthly court-martial order promulgating data in cases of enlisted men, with remarks upon legal points involved; distribution of monthly court-martial orders to all permanent courts-martial; keeping card index of all trials by general court-martial; card-index record of all prisoners and detentioners in ronfinement in naval prisons, prison ships, disciplinary barracks, hospitals, and State prisons; card-index record of prisoners and detentioners on probation and prisoners and detentioners who have escaped; conduct record of prisoners on probation as shown by monthly reports of commanding officers; conduct record of prisoners and detentioners in confinement, as shown by monthly and weekly reports of naval prisons and disciplinary barracks and quarterly criminal reports from State prisons; distribution of prisoners and detentioners between the various naval prisons, disciplinary barracks, and prison ships, in accordance with record of capacity and number in confinement in each prison and disciplinary barracks; transfer of men in State prisons for discharge; requests of prisoners for restoration to duty on probation; binding general court-martial records in loose-leaf devices; keeping data for annual report of the Judge Advocate General concerning the foregoing subjects; preparing letters for the Secretary's signature, directing that boards of medical survey be convened in cases of general court-martial prisoners; taking necessary action in cases of detentioners recommended for transfer to naval prisons.
All of the above-named officers receive the pay provided for their rank and length of service.
SATURDAY, Norember 23, 1912.
STATEMENT OF HON. WALTER L. FISHER, SECRETARY, ACCOM
PANIED BY MR. CLEMENT S. UCKER, CHIEF CLERK, AND MR. E. J. AYERS.
FIRST ASSISTANT SECRETARY.
Secretary FISHER. The first change, Mr. Chairman, is an increase in the salary of the First Assistant Secretary from $5,000 to $7,500. Personally, I regard that as a matter of very great importance. The position of First Assistant Secretary in the Interior Department is
quite unlike that of any of the other departments. As you are doubtless aware, the Secretary of the Interior has to perform a great many quasi-judicial functions, particularly with relation to Land Office appeals. One of the things I personally regard as of the most urgent importance with regard to the entire administration of that department is the establishment of adequate machinery for handling those appeals, both more promptly and more satisfactorily, with the regard to the consideration that can be given the merits of the cases. The work of the General Land Office is very large. The decrease in the amount of public lands has not been followed by a decrease in the amount of business.
Mr. Johnson. Why not ?
Secretary Fisher, Largely for this reason: The increase of popu!ation, and especially the increase in the means of transportation and communication, has made much more desirable for entry purposes the remaining lands that are available for that use. While it is quite true that the better lands, generally speaking, of the public domain have been taken up by the homestead law, that is subject to some very important exceptions. There is still a very great deal of public land which in itself for ordinary agricultural uses is of the greatest value.
Mr. GILLETT. Is that still subject to homestead
Secretary Fish ER. That is still subject to homestead. That is particularly true with regard to these areas of land that have been reserved for one reason or another, and are now being thrown open to homestead: land eliminated from the forest reserves and thrown back into the public domain; land which has been recovered back by the Government as a result of litigation, especially large areas which have been taken by large interests either directly or indirectly, and which have been restored to the public domain; and from the very nature of the case it is apt to be true that those areas were particularly attractive, and that was the reason why methods that will not bear scrutiny have been adopted to get them; and as we recover those lands, and they are thrown back into the public domain, they become increasingly valuable.
Mr. GILLETT. Is there anything in that to make a substantial increase in the work?
Secretary FISHER. There is quite a good deal. Then Indian reservations are changed from time to time, and reservations for various purposes. There is a great deal of important timberland that is still open to settlement which may have been reserved temporarily or which simply has not been surveyed and thrown open. But perhaps the principal class that is of the kind I have described is the irrigated land. It is perfectly true that lands which under previous methods of agriculture were arid and unprofitable for cultivation are, when they are put under water by means of irrigation, worth very much more than any of the very best lands we ever had in the Middle West were worth at the time they were entered. Forty acres of irrigated land is quite generally the size of a tract that will support a family in much more comfortable circumstances than 160 acres ever did in the past. There are many cases of land adapted to methods of intensive cultivation where the farm unit is much less than 40, sometimes as low as 10 and 20 acres; and we have cases where settlers who have been very much incensed because in the first
instance they were not allowed to enter 80 or 160 acres come in and say they made a great mistake in not taking 40 or even as low as 20, because by taking the larger area they were led to try more than they could profitably handle, having to pay the reclamation charges and having to get it under cultivation. They have had to scatter their energies when it would have been more profitable if they had concentrated their energies on 10 or 20 acres. That is particularly true in fruit districts.
Mr. GILLETT. How much can they take?
Secretary FISHER. The reclamation act provides that the unit shall be fixed at that size which will support a family.
Mr. GILLETT. Do you fix that in the department?
Secretary Fisher. The department fixes it, and I suppose it is safe to say the average unit to-day is not much, if any, in excess of 40 or 50 acres of irrigated land. The result of that is that these lands are very much sought after, and we have got to remember all the while that the Government goes in and spends the total amount, calculated at $50 an acre, on the irrigation project, and then that is thrown open to homestead entry when we are ready to open the project. The lands are worth more than our very best agricultural land. They are immediately worth a couple of hundred dollars an acre.
Mr. GILLETT. They have to pay something, do they not?
Secretary FISHER. They pay the reclamation charge; but the original homesteader, of course, simply enters the land, lives on it for three years, cultivates a fixed proportion, which under the irrigation act has to be half of the irrigable area of his entry, and pays the reclamation charges, and that is all. The reclamation charge may be fifty or seventy dollars, and he may be on land which is worth $200. Of course, that is not always true; but it is quite often true that irrigated lands in the West now are frequently much more valuable than ordinary agricultural lands were ever worth in the history of the country.
In addition to that, the facilities, as I have said, for intercommunication and travel have also increased the value of lands, which, under the old methods, were comparatively worthless, are now relatively worth quite as much as the frontier lands were worth in the old days, and the contests are probably more frequent. When land is really valuable there are apt to be more contests about it, and these contests are apt to be carried on more persistently, and the result is that the applications come through the Land Office and up to the Secretary's office on appeal. So that the one item of work which is now behind in the office of the Assistant Attorney General for the Department of the Interior is appeals from the Land Office. It has been utterly impossible to handle them with the care which I have been insisting upon they should be handled with, and take care of the volume of business and keep it up to date.
Mr. GILLETT. Is that the exclusive work of the First Assistant Secretary?
Secretary FISHER. No; but the First Assistant Secretary has the immediate charge of those land appeals.
Mr. GILLETT. Is he the man who has charge also of pension appeals?