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Lot 277: 1847 Senate Resolution regarding the Sale of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians

Presidential Election Auction - Early American History Auctions

by Early American

29 October 2016

Rancho Santa Fe, CA, USA

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  • 1847 Senate Resolution regarding the Sale of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians
  • 1847 Senate Resolution regarding the Sale of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians
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Description: Post-Revolutionary War to Civil War
1847 Sale of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians Indiana Senate
February 25, 1847-Dated, Senate Resolution in the Legislature of Indiana, regarding the selling of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians, Very Fine.
This original Document is a Indiana Senate Resolution in the Legislature regarding the selling of Intoxicating Liquors to Indians, measuring 6" x 9" with minor paper loss upper left corner, in overall nice condition. The first Federal regulations for the restriction of liquor selling to Indians were contained in the act of March 30, 1802, which provided "that the President of the United States be authorized to take such measures from time to time as to him may appear expedient to prevent or restrain the vending or distributing of spirituous liquors among all or any of the said Indian tribes."
The first Federal regulations for the restriction of liquor selling to Indians were contained in the act of March 30, 1802, which provided "that the president of the United States be authorized to take such measures from time to time as to him may appear expedient to prevent or restrain the vending or distributing of spirituous liquors among all or any of the said Indian tribes."

The Intercourse Act of 1834 provided very inadequate penalties to punish the introduction of ardent spirits among the Indians. As a result, largely, of the baneful effects of the almost unrestrained liquor traffic in the Indian country, as revealed in the reports of the government officials and missionaries and others, Congress in 1847 passed a law that added the punishment of imprisonment to the fine formerly imposed for introducing and selling intoxicating liquors in the Indian country. Even this measure was likely to prove ineffectual unless the whisky [whiskey] trade that flourished along the borders could be checked.

The act of February 13, 1862, made it a crime punishable by fine and imprisonment, to sell liquor to Indians that were under the care of a superintendent or agent, whether on or off the reservation. This legislation came many years after its necessity had first become apparent, and provided prohibition perhaps as far as could be obtained by legal document. The constitutionality of the act was affirmed in the United States supreme court in 1865. This remained the law until the revision of the law in 1873-74, when the restrictions were removed to the extent that the selling of liquor to Indians was not an offense off the reservation. But the act of February 27, 1877, restored the former provision, so that the vending of intoxicants to Indians whose relations still continued with the government was punishable by three hundred dollar's fine and two years' imprisonment. The growth of public sentiment on the subject of alcoholism was shown in the act of 1886 by which instruction on the nature of alcohol and its effects on the human body should be included in the curricula of all Indian schools controlled by the government.

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