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Sales and Receipts. No. of acres sold, 10. Sold for...
SALT SPRING LANDS.
No. of acres sold, 183.24. Amount sold for,..... $632 96
Receipts to General Fund, on account of taxes,.. $710 33
Total Amount of Sales. Of Primary School Lands,
4,738 46 acres. University Lands,
153 60 Normal School Lands,
120 00 Asylum Lands,...
160 00 State Building Lands,
40 00 Internal Improvement Lands,.
828 63 Asset Lands,....
10 00 Salt Spring Lands,
183 34 Swamp Lands,
Receipts. On account of Primary School Lands,... $88,159 70 University Lands,...
21,622 30 Normal School Lands, is
3,402 14 Asylum Lands,..
2,933 11 State Building Lands,
On account of Internal Improvement Lands,..
40 00 1,641 41 67,511 73
Add amount of Taxes collected,.
Since the passage of the law for the disposition of these lands, on the 4th of February last, one hundred and four thousand nine hundred and twenty acres have been sold. Of this amount, eighty-five thousand nine hundred and twenty-four acres were taken by actual settlers. In this amount is included seven thousand seven hundred and eighty acres upon which nothing has yet been paid, being booked to settlers under Sec. 9 of the Act, giving them the privilege to make the one-fourth payment at any time within one year from the passage of the Act.
Besides this, three hundred and twenty acres were sold to settlers prior to the passage of the Act, and since
my last annual report, under the Preemption Act of 1855.
The amount received into the treasury to this date, on the proceeds of the sales of all these lands, is $62,897 67.
The aggregate amount of the sales is $122,287 00. The minimum price of these lands, fixed by law at one dollar and twenty-five cents per acre, and but one-fourth being required down, to actual settlers, and the balance in ten years thereafter, at an annual interest of seven per cent., has given very general satisfaction.
But the requirement by law of persons desiring to settle, of making their aflidavits before the Commiesioner only, it is thought should be dispensed with, as a useless burthen upon those living at a distance from the Land Office, amounting in many instances to an absolute barrier of
purchase by poor men, for settlement, who are unable to bear the extra expense of this mode of obtaining their certificate of title. I would therefore respectfully suggest the importance of such a modification of this feature of the law, that any person desiring to settle upon these lands can do so by making the required affidavit before any person in his town or county properly qualified to administer an oath, and forwarding the same to the Land Office; and if satisfactory to the Commissioner, and accompanied by the required one-fourth payment down, that the certificate be issued upon such satisfactory affidavit, and be returned to the applicant, as he or she may direct. This was the practice by the applicants as adjoining owners and settlers, under Sec. 9 of this law, and it was found to work equally as safe and satisfactory to the interests of the State, and all concerned, as when the affidavit was made before the Commissioner, and saved the settler living remote from the Land Office, and unable to bear it, much unnecessary travel and expense.
All of this class of lands have been advertised according to law and brought into market, for which patents have been received and the re-surveys perfected by the general government.
The amount is 4,526,892 67-100 acres, and the cost of advertising $12,554 75 of the $15,000 allowed by the law for advertising the same by full descriptions in every county in which a paper was published at the time of the passage of the law. The balance of these lands yet unpatented and consequently still out of market in the State, and where located, can be seen by reference to the annual report of this departnent of December 1st, 1857. It is respectfully submitted whether a general notice of the public sale of the balance of these lands, under the restrictions of the present law, as they may from time to time be patented to the State, instead of full descriptions as required by the present law, would not be amply sufficient for all
practical purposes of bringing them into market for pri vate entry.
I have been assured by His Excellency the Governor, upon whom it devolves more especially, to call for the Patents of these lands from the general government, that they will be made out and forwarded at the very earliest practicable period. This is much to be desired as numer ous applications have already been made for their purchase for settlement and cultivation, by persons living in their immediate vicinity, as well as from many others resi dent in and out of the State.
A portion of the unpatented lands, as will be seen by my report of December 1, 1857, being located in counties considerably settled, have essentially retarded the settlement and cultivation of these lands in some of these coun ties. Such has been the eagerness to settle upon some of these lands, that many have already done so, before and since the passage of the present law, trusting in the good faith of the State, that it would at its next session re-enact the main features of the law of 1858, favoring settlers and adjoining owners, with such modifications as might seem called for, to take effect as soon as these lands shall be patented to the State, and to be in force as long as may be deemed advisable.
Persons residing in the vicinity of the 7,000 acres of these lands in the township of Lansing, Meridian, Bath and De Witt, in the counties of Ingham and Clinton, which were kept out of market by the act of the Legislature of last session, to be improved by the Agricultural College, have been exceedingly anxious for an apportunity to effect their purchase, settlement, and cultivation, as soon as these lands should be brought into market. They much desire their speedy settlement and cultivation in their particular localities, entirely irrespective of any objects to which the proceeds of their sale may be appropriated, as their present unoccupied condition remains a serious inconvienence