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Valentine vs Moore


Three different litigants filed suit against Bernard Moore and his backers in October 1897. Emery Valentine, known as "Valentine et al.",  represented one of the three groups. Born in Dowagiac, Michigan in 1858, Valentine was a Juneau merchant who had several endeavors, not the least of which was a jewelry store and a general store. He came to Juneau in May 1886. He served on the Juneau city council for seven terms, and was its mayor for six of those terms. A staunch Republican, he served as a representative on the committee for statehood from 1912 through 1914. He organized Juneau's city water and fire departments, and the wharf companies for both Juneau and Skagway.  Emery Valentine was J. M. Tanner's brother-in-law, and knew Tanner since 1868.


Brief for Valentine
Valentine Testimony, April 2, 1898
Power of Attorney for J. M. Tanner
Re-Call Testimony of April 6, 1898






In the Matter of the application and notice of Bernard Moore for a U. S. patent to a certain piece of land entry made under the Act of Congress approved March 3rd, 1891, relating to survey and entry of lands in Alaska, which said land is located and situate in the District of Alaska and more particularly described hereinafter.

To the REGISTER and RECEIVER of the U. S. Land Office, and the above named Claimant:-

    Whereas Bernard Moore, the applicant, did on September 16th, 1897, file in the U. S. Land Office at Sitka, Alaska, a certain plat of a survey of a certain piece or parcel of land together with his application for a U. S. Patent for said land and known as survey No. 13 and containing 160 acres of land situated in the said District of Alaska, and that the said Bernard Moore did at the same time and place give no­tice of final proof and entry and that he would apply for a U. S. Patent at the U. S. Land Office at Sitka, Alaska, on the 4th day of November, 1897, at 2 o'clock, and which said notice which was signed by one John W. Dudley who purported to act as Register of the said U. S. Land office at Sitka, and all persons claiming adversely were required to file a protest or adverse claim on or before the said 4th day of November, 1887, which said notice of final proof and entry is hereto attached and referred to and made a part of this adverse claim end which said land for which a patent is asked is particularly described by meets and bounds in said notice and which said land is the same as is in controversy and referred to in these protests and adverse claims.

And whereas the said notice of final proof and entry has been pub­lished in the Alaska Mining Record, a weekly newspaper published and printed at Juneau, District of Alaska, and said notice is in forms, words facts and figures as the notice hereto attached.

    NOW THEREFORE, I, E. Valentine, a citizen of the United States over the age of twenty-one years residing in and my Postoffice [sic] address being Juneau, Alaska, and W. J. Rose & Company, a co-partnership con­sisting of W. J. Rose, Robert M. Adams and Joseph Owens, and W. F. Saportas, J. G. Coslett, Jacob Bloom, H. J. Poster, George C. Coe and Thomas M. Stevens, J. M. Tanner and Charles Sperry and the Skaguay Wharf and Improvement Company, consisting of E. Valentine, J. P. Jorgensen and E. 0. Sylvester, all residents end citizens of the United States by their attorney in fact, E. Valentine, do on this 21st day of October, 1897, enter this their protest and adverse claim against the issuing of a patent to the said Bernard Moore for his pretended claim upon the so-called trading post set forth in his said plats and field notes aforesaid and notice of final proof ant entry for the following reasons, to-wit:-

    1st. That said adverse claimants have 'been informed and believe that said Bernard Moore was not at the time of entering upon said land and is not now a citizen of the United states.

    2nd. Because the said Bernard Moore at the time of entering upon said land and having the same surveyed and at the time of filing the plats and field notes in the office of the said U. 8. Register of Land at Sitka, Alaska, nor never has used the said land for trading and commercial purposes, nor has the said Bernard Moore or anyone in his behalf used the said land or any portion thereof as a trading post or for any purpose whatsoever as contemplated under the Act of Congress approved March 3rd, 1891, relating to survey and entry of lands in Alaska for trading, commercial or any other purpose therein mentioned.

    3rd. Because said Bernard Moore has not entered the land in good faith but has mortgaged and disposed of a portion, if not all, of said land to Billinghurst and Escolm both of whom are foreigners and not citi­zens of the United States and who represent the Northwest Trading & Transportation Company, a corporation organized and existing under the laws of England or the Dominion of Canada.

    4th. Because Bernard Moore has never for himself put any improvements upon said land or any portion thereof prior to the time of filing his field notes and surveys and the publication of the notice hereto attached except a log cabin which the said Moore used as a residence. That the other improvements put upon said land have been made by said Billinghurst and Escolm for the uses and purposes of the said foreign corporation,




APRIL 2-6, 1898


[page 71]



Hearing resumed at 1 o'clock P.M. April 2, 1898.

Emery Valentine being duly sworn testified as follows:

Q. what is your name, residence and occupation?

A. Emery Valentine, Juneau, Alaska Jeweler by Profession.

Q. What tine did you first go to Skaguay?

A. Arrived at Skaguay about August 20 1897.

Q. Do you know Bernard Moore, the applicant, for a patent in this case and the party who has been referred to as Capt. Moore, his father

A.  I do.

Q  How long have you known Bernard Moore?

A. About 10 years.

Q. You have also had some business relations have you not doing this past ten years with Moore?

A. I have.

Q. Has he, during this time, been a man of wealth and money, if not, state what his financial condition has been?

A. I can only state so far as his business relations have been with me. I have frequently trusted Ben for a small amount, and sometimes it extended over quite a period before it was paid. He told me sometimes that he was at Skaguay, and he told me that he was at Chilkat some times. He wasn't around Juneau much of the time.

Q. What was he doing when he was around these places, if you know?

A. I do not.

Q. Now when you went to Skaguay in August, last, do you know the improvements or buildings that then were erected upon what is known as the Moore claim, and, if so state them and the approximate value of each? Reference being had to those buildings claimed to have been belonging to Bernard Moore?

A. All the buildings I saw on the entire land there, I couldn't state who owned them, there was one log cabin, where Ben now lives, they were building an addition to it at that time.


[page 72]


I have since been over there and looked at the place, I should think that the log house and the addition cost probably $300. The house they called the cook house was there, I suppose, just to look from the outside, that that would cost $400. The little place that they told me was the store, I wouldn't think I that was worth more than $125. or possibly $150. It was a small, cheap building. And the house where Capt. Moore lives I should think cost from $350 to $400. The enclosure of hewn cottonwood logs, which is now the city hall, I suppose there was probably $100. worth of work done on that. It was 4 or 6 logs high, no roof, no floor, no windows or doors. I saw a small rough log cabin built out back in the timber. And there was a foundation down on the beach with a boiler, an engine and a circular saw on it, and part of the main structure of a wharf built out on the cliff.

Q. Now you say there was a small store there, did you notice the amount of merchandise in it, if so, please state the approx­imate value and who you found in the management and control of the store at that time.

A. I went in and talked with the man who had charge of it. I don't remember his name. He told me that Mr. Billinghurst had engaged him at Victoria to take charge of it. I looked around at the stock of merchandise and I place the valuation under $100.

Q. Did you know a man there by the name of Warden?

A. I did.

Q. Did you ever have any dealings with Warden relative to some tents that you had bought from the store and about paying for the same?

A. The tent deal came up in the latter part of September. I bought four tents from there, the store, to be used on the


[page 78]


the trail. Mr. Warden cane over about an hour after I had bought them and said he wanted to refund the purchase price, that his company were interested in the trail as much as any­one could be. He then wrote me an order on the storekeeper and then said he would go along with me and see that I got the money, which he did.

Q. What was Warden doing at that time?

A. He said he was managing the affairs of the English company.

Q. Was that at the wharf or saw mill?

A. He said he was the general manager of the whole affair, horses and everything else. I heard him giving orders to the teamsters afterwards. He came to me for some lumber for the wharf and borrowed some iron bars to use in the wharf.

Q. Bid you ever see Ben Moore around giving any orders at the store, about the teams, or around any other property which Ben Moore is claiming in his application to be his?

A. No I did not.

Q. About the time of the construction of the wharf, which appli­cant claims, did you have any conversation with him concerning the same, and, if so, state it?

A. I said Ben you had better hurry up on the wharf there. He says they have got 26 men to work but d_ [blank is original] if I can see what they are doing. And he says I daresnt [sic] say anything.

Q. Do you know a man by the name of Billinghurst? Escolme?

A. I Know Billinghurst, but have never met Escolme.

Q. Who was Billinghurst, or who is he rather? and what was he doing at Skaguay and of what country is he a citizen? If you know?

A. He told me he was an Englishman, and he always spoke to me as if he owned the wharf and saw mill and everything up there. I never saw him doing anything except that he called on me several times to talk with me in connection with the wharf and townsite property.


[page 74]


Q. Do you know a man by the name of Buchanan at Skaguay, during the last year or so?

A. I did know him.

Q. State what he was doing and if you ever had any dealings with him or conversation with him about this property?

A. I met him the first day that I arrived at Skaguay. He told me he was a manager for the English company, he was constructing the dock for them. Said he had a timber claim of his own back of the town up the valley. Said he was going to quit the com­pany that day and he took a contract from me for getting out pilings.

Q. Did you ever have any dealings with Billinghurst concerning the leasing of the property of which you are claiming in this case?

A. No not of this particular property. I hadn’t bought any or located any at that time. I told him I wanted some land for a wharf and for a lumber yard and that I would buy it from him or lease it from him for a term of years, and I would recog­nize his title. He said that he would give me a lease but he would have to go to Victoria first.

Q. Did he state for what purpose he would have to go to Victoria?

A. To consult with the people down there.

Q. Do you know anything about the removal of a bunk house which Judge Delaney questioned Mr. Bigelow about yesterday, if so, state it?

A. Yes I remember the bunk house. It was built last fall. Mr. Tan­ner showed me about the time it was completed a contract wherein he had agreed to move the bunk house over by the saw mill. This contract was made with a man named Hill.

Q. Did you ever cash any checks signed by Escolme and, if so, who presented them to you?

A. I cashed checks amounting to $1600, signed by Escolme, pre­sented by Billinghurst and endorsed by him (Billinghurst).


[page 75]


There was about 20 of those checks.

Q. When was that?

A. Sometime in the fall, I think in October, 1807.

Q. From seeing the signature of Billinghurst and Escolme upon those checks, do you believe that you would be able to give an opinion as to the signature of Escolme and Billinghurst?

A.  I believe I would.

Q.  I hand you here a letter dated Victoria, B.C. July 31,1897,and ask you to examine the signature at the bottom of that letter and tell me if you are able to give an opinion as to whose signature that is and who wrote it?

A. It is the same signature that was on the checks I cashed.

John H. Escolme.

Q. Will you state that that is the signature as written by Escolme?

A. I say its the same signature that was on the checks I cashed. Q. Will you state that to the best of your opinion that that is Escolmes handwriting? I am not asking you positively, I am asking you to pass an opinion?

A. I can state that the same name and the same signature were on the checks I cashed, but the man I have never had any communications from nor never net him.

Q. Were those checks cashed and paid up?

A. They were.

Q. Have you seen Mr. Billinghurst write his name?

A. I have.

Q. Do you believe you would be able to recognize his hand writing?

A.  I believe I would.
I hand you now a letter dated Victoria, B.C. July 22nd, 1897, and ask you if you recognize the signature at the bottom of the letter and, if so, to the best of your opinion, whose signature is it?

A.  It is the signature of the man that I know as Billinghurst.


[page 76]


Q. The same man you saw around Skaguay?

A. Yes sir, and the same signature that Billinghurst placed on the checks which I cashed.

Q. On the map that is in this case with C. W. Garside's signature to it, there is a piece of land thereon marked cleared which surrounds the buildings which you have described heretofore in your testimony, I want to ask you if there is any land cleared in and about those buildings, or any where [sic] else on this claim of Bernard Moore when you went to Skaguay, in August, last?

A. There was no cleared land on the Dyea side of the river, there might have been some over on Ben's side I didn't go over there. I mean the Dyea side of Mill creek.

Q. Vas there any clearing in and about Ben Moore’s and Capt. Moore's at that time?

A. I haven’t been over by Ben Moores. There wasn't any clear­ing around Capt. Moore's except what was necessary for the erection of tents and buildings.

Q. Do you know anything Mr. Valentine about those skid road which have been spoken about being constructed on this 160 acres.

A. I know a man named King came to me and wanted to take the con­tract for getting out the pilings that I needed, said that he owned the skid road and had built it, and that I couldn’t get any pilings out unless I used it.

Q. Have you seen King use it?

A. Yes, hauling out logs.

Q. You have constructed a wharf up there extending from the up­land claimed by Bernard Moore out into deep water in Skaguay Bay, have you?

A. I have. Were you there most during the construction of it?

A.    I was.

Q. During this time did you have an opportunity during the


[page 77]


period of construction of this wharf, to observe the rise and fall of the tide in Skaguay Bay at this place?

A.  I did.

Q. Vertically, state how many feet?

A.  I Judge it to be from 27 to 28 feet.

Q.  Is there any practical place of constructing a wharf at Skaguay without constructing it so when you reach the upland with it that you will have to enter upon this 160 acres, and is there any practical way of reaching White Pass for the Klondike or Yukon without passing over this same piece of land? (The Witness is here shown the Garside map which shows the exterior boundary lines of the 160 acres, which map is attached to Garside's affidavit.)

A. No there is no other.

Q. Did you observe any land on these premises such as would con­stitute pasture land for the purpose of running a dairy, and was there any such land there?

A. No I would say not.

Q. On this same Garside map that I referred to a minute ago, he has marked upon the southern part of this 160 acres of land a wire fence, was there any such fence there when you went there?

A. I saw other.

Q. If it had been there you would have seen it?

A. I think I would. I saw one piece of wire fence, that was constructed after I went there, across Runnalls street.

Q. You have been a resident of Juneau how long?

A. Twelve years in May [May 1886].

Q. Has your business been more or less of a public business to a certain extent during that time?

A. Yes, I think I have been among the people as much as any one.

Q.  Have you ever known people to speak of this piece of land which has been held as claimed by Bernard Moore for a trading post, or did you over hear it spoken of as a trading post?


[page 78]


A.  No I never did.

Q.  Can you conceive of any kind of business that Bernard Moore could have carried on in the past, or will carry on in the fu­ture, that would make it necessary for his conducting of trade and manufacture, for him to own or possess these 160 acres?

A.  No sir.

Q. What amount of land do you think is necessary?

A.  I have never known Ben to manufacture or trade at all.

Q. In Ben Moore's affidavit Ben Moore claims that he has expended large sums of money. I have forgotten the amount, in the construction of this trail that runs up Skaguay valley, do you know the amount of money that the citizens of Skaguay have spent upon this trail, in the construction of it?

A. I know that one time I was made treasurer of a fund for open­ing the trail along the latter part of September, and I ex­pended about $2100. on the trail. At that time I was told that it was impassible, never went over it.

Q. Was there any free labor, besides this money, entered into the construction of this road?

A. I believe there had been a great deal of free labor expended, although I didn't see it. I met a great many men there that told me they had been working on the road so many days and been working on the bridge.

Q. Did you contribute anything, if so, how much?

A. I contributed about $600.


Cross Examination.

Q. At the time you was in the store, was it in August or July?

A. August.

Q. Do you know whether or not at that time there was any other goods, wares, or merchandise, hay or provisions, connected with the store, outside of what you saw in the store itself?

A.  I do not.



[page 79]


Q. You do not know whether any portion of the stock belonging to the store was stored in warehouses or tents at that time?

A. I do not.

Q. Regarding the tent matter do you remember having a conversa­tion with Ben Moore about them?

A.  No I do not. Ben went over to the store with us I believe.

Q.  Did he assist you in any way or was he connected in any way with the deal.

A. No.

Q. Do you remember just how it was the matter was called off, did you no longer want the tents or did they want then for their own use? Or how was it?

A. I said that Mr. Warden said he would refund the money that I had paid for them.

Q. Don't you remember that the time the money was refunded you were up about Geo. Rice's place or somewhere in that vicinity, and Ben came along with Warden and directed Warden to refund the money and you thanked him afterwards for doing it?

A. No Ben had nothing to do with it. I thanked him and Warden both afterwards.

Q. At the time the money was refunded it was up at Rice’s and Warden and Ben were together?

A. The money was refunded in the store, not at Rice’s.

Q. Who was present when it was refunded?

A. I remember the old man that kept the store, was one, a man that came from Victoria, and Ben and myself.

Q. Did you understand Warden to be an owner in the townsite to any of the properties thereon belonging to the Moores, or was he simply an agent or employe [sic]?

A. I understood him to be, as he told me he was, an agent or superintendent for the English company.

Q. Do you remember the name of the company?

A. I supposed it was Billinghurst because he told me afterwards


[page 80]


that Billinghurst fired him.


Q. Do you know the name of the company that Buchanan was manager for?

A. No only that it was called the English company, that’s what he called it.

Q. This Buchanan is the same man who had a claim up the valley behind Ben's claim, is he not?

A. Yes, he told me he had a timber claim up there.

Q. You were here when Reid's two maps were introduced?

A.  I think not, I was out most of the tine during hie]s testimony.

Q. Does the townsite of Skaguay as claimed by the citizens cover any portion of this Buchanan's claim?

A. That I don't know.

Q.  Is this the man that killed himself?

A. Yes.

Q. You have never succeeded in getting any lease from Billinghurst or any other Englishman or English company, have you?

A. No, although I have been promised it by them.

Q. By who?

A. By Ben Moore, by Billinghurst and by Capt. Moore.

Q. At the time of this conversation did you know that Ben had had an official survey of the ground made with a view of getting his patent?

A. I did not.

Q. When was the conversation about the leasing with Billinghurst?

A.  I believe it was in October, in '97.

Q. When did you first learn that Moore had had an official survey made on the 160 acres?

A. Yesterday, I believe.

Q. when did you first learn that this application for a patent had been made?

A. The first I knew of it I saw the notice posted in front of the post office at Skaguay, I think in September or October, 1897.


[page 81]


Q.  I understand you to say that you don't know Escolne'8 signature never saw him write it?

A. Never saw him write it.

Q. All you know about his signature is the comparison between the one in the letter Judge Winn showed you and the one on the checks which you cashed?

A. I stated the signature in the letter was the same as the signature on the checks.

Q. But you don't know whether either of them was signed by Escolme?

A. I didn’t see either of the signed.

Q. When were you first up there at Skaguay?

A.  About the 20th of August, 1897.

Q. Was there a wagon road across this 160 acres at that tine?

I mean from the water front back.

A. They were hauling stuff from scows up the trail.  The wagon got through up as far as I went.

Q. What was at that time the character of the land towards the end of the road so far as you went up? I mean with reference to timber, boulders etc.

A.  It was heavily timbered, underbrush etc., excepting where it had been cleared for tents.

Q. Do you remember whether the pack trail that was started up the valley up that tine, started from the end of the wagon road and passed up the trail from there?

A.  I do not know, I was only up the road about a mile.

Q. Do you know what King had been doing prior to the time you had the conversation with him about getting you out some piling?

A. He told me he had been getting out logs for the saw mill that he had a contract with.

Q. In your estimate of the rise and fall of the tide at Skaguay Bay in which you place it at from 27 to 28 feet, do you intend that to refer to the ordinary rise and fall of the tide, or to unusual or extraordinary high tide?


[page 82]

A. I refer to the tides which I saw there from the highest to the lowest.

Q. When did you take these observations?

A. During the construction of the wharf.

Q. Between what periods?

A. Prom probably the 20th of August, up to the latter part of November, 1897.

Q. And the result of your observation during that period is the average or ordinary rise and fall of the tide is 27 or 28 feet?

A. No I won’t say that. I say from the highest to the lowest, it was necessary for me to know that in order to get the wharf so that we could get the proper depth of water and that the highest tide wouldn’t over­flow it.

Q. Do you know whether there was ever a wire fence running across the water front constructed by the Moores, post and partly wires.

A. There was none there when I went there and has been none since.

Q. You say you have been more or less acquainted with the people of the district during the last 10 or 12 years, during that time hasn’t it been generally understood among the old settlers here that the Moores a had a claim to a piece of land on Skaguay Bay?

A. I had never heard of it until I went to Skaguay.

Q. When you say that you do not conceive of any business that Bernard Moore could carry on in the past or will in the future that will make it necessary for him to have 160 acres, do I understand you to mean that the 160 acres isn’t fit for a trading and manufacturing site?

A. No I wouldn’t say that.

Q. When you first went there there was and still is quite considerable areas of timber in that valley fit to be manufactured into lumber?

A. I believe not. I had four men out scouring for a week to get sufficient piling 46 feet long to complete the second approach



[page 83]


to the wharf and they claimed they couldn’t find them.

Q. It is generally regarded as one of the outlets to the Yukon country by way of the White Pass?

A.  Yes.

Q. How many docks are there there now completed?

A.  There is none.

Q. Are there any docks in Skaguay Bay at which steamers and water craft land?

A. There are three.

Q.  Seagoing vessels are coming and going daily are they not now?

A. Yes.

Q. In the way of trade and commerce it is getting to be quite an important point for Alaska is it not?

A. At present it is.

Q. In case easy or good facilities for reaching the interior over the White Pass, whether such facilities are wagon road, railroad or otherwise, the commerce and trade and manufacture of the place would in that manner be necessarily increased and the importance of the place enhanced as a trading and manufactur­ing site?

A. It would.

Q. At the time you were acting as the Treasurer, do you remember whether or not Capt. Moore with a gang of men was at work on the trail or up the valley there somewhere?

A. I don't think he was. I didn't hear of it anyway.

Q. The time you were treasurer was in September you think?

A. Thats the time the work started.

Q. Don't you remember that Capt. was up there with a gang of men in the month of August?

A. I never knew him to be there but I heard that he had been up there at work.


[page 84]





I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony was read by me and corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was subscribed to by him at my office in Sitka, Alaska this 4th day of April, 1898.










[page 98]


Emery Valentine recalled by protestant [attorney J. G. Price] and testified as follows:


Q. I believe you stated while on the stand before that you had built and constructed a wharf at Skaguay and an approach to the same?

A. Yes, I have.

Q. You feel then somewhat conversant with the amount of money it takes to put up a wharf of the kind that has been referred to and claimed by Ben Moore at Skaguay? A. Yes.

Q. What then would be the cost, if you know, of this wharf that has been referred to as the company's wharf and also referred to as the wharf claimed by Ben Moore? A. They way it stands now with warehouse and everything complete,

it shouldn't have cost more than $12,000.

Q. You include the approach also?

A.  Yes.

Q. Do you know what the wharf alone cost and, if so, how did you gain the information?

A. Yes I do. At the time I cashed those checks for Mr. Billinghurst, I asked him how much the wharf had cost him, and he told me $6,000. They were just starting on the approach at that time.

Q. Do you know for what purpose the money which you paid him on those checks was used for? If so, state?

A. He told me he wanted it to pay off the men that were workingon the wharf.

Q. Is this saw mill that is claimed by Ben Moore now running, if not, how long has it been closed down?

A.    Well, I wasn't up there all the time, it seems to me that it was closed down in November, I wouldn't be sure about that though.

Q. About how long did it run before it closed down?

A.  It started up about the middle of September, but how long it


[page 99]


run, I don't know.


     [signed Emery Valentine]



I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony was read by me and corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was then, subscribed to by him at my office in Sitka, Alaska, this 4th day of April, 1898.


     [signed John W. Dudley]






NOW ALL MEN BY THESE PRESENTS, That I, J. M. Tanner of Juneau, Alaska, have made, constituted, and appointed, and by these pres­ents do make, constitute and appoint E. Valentine of the same place my true and lawful attorney for me and in my name, place and stead, and for any use to sell and transfer, bargain and bond, sell or lease all of my property, personal or real, in the town of Skaguay, to whom and on such terms as my said attorney may deem best, and by such instruments or means as may be agreed upon be­tween him and any other party or parties and to prosecute action in my name if necessary.

Giving and granting unto my said attorney full power and au­thority to do and perform all and every act and thing whatsoever requisite and necessary to be done in and about the premises as fully to all intents and purposes as I might or could do if per­sonally present, with full power of substitution and revocation hereby ratifying and confirming all that my said attorney shall lawfully do or cause to be done by virtue of these presents.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF I hereunto set my hand and seal this 4th day of October, A. D. 1897.



[signed Jn & RL Winn, Floyd E. Ryers]


[J. M. Tanner]








District of Alaska.

This certifies that on this 4th. day of October, 1897, before me the undersigned a Notary Public in and for the said District, personally appeared the within named J. M. Tanner who is known to me to be the identical person described in and who executed the within instrument and acknowledged to me that he executed the same freely and voluntarily for the uses and purposes therein mentioned.

IN WITNKSS WHEREOF I have hereunto set my hand and official seal the day and year last above written.


     [signed Jno K. Winn]


     Notary Public, Alaska.


[page 1]



U.S. Land Office, Sitka, Alaska,

April 6, 1898.


Case of Emery Valentine et al., protestants, vs. Bernard Moore, claimant, was called for hearing, there "being present: Surveyor-General, Register and Receiver, and the parties in interest.


Malony & Winn as the attorneys for Emery Valentine, protestant, now offer in evidence the direct testimony of the witnesses W. A. Bigelow, Frank H. Reid, John G. Price,  Emery Valentine and Mrs. Annie Leonard, taken in the case of the protestants John G. Price et al., as the direct testimony and evidence in the case of protest of Emery Valentine; and also all of the exhibits that were offered in the protest of the said John G. Price et al. are hereby offered in evidence as exhibits in the case of the said Emery Valentine protestant, and ask that all of the said testimony and evidence be received by this Board and considered by the U. S. Land Office as evidence and testimony in said protest of Emery Valentine.

As such it was received by the Board.


APPLICANT also offers in evidence in the case now under consideration all of the cross examination of the witness for the protestant in the case of Price et al. vs the claimant, and also all the evidence, documentary and otherwise, introduced by the claim­ant, upon the hearing of the protest of the said Price et al., in that case.


Counsel for the protestant Emery Valentine objects to the testi­mony of all those witnesses that was offered by counsel for the claimant on rebuttal in so far as the testimony was offered to prove the possession of the land in controversy, the improvements and value thereof upon the same, and the adaptation of the land for


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certain purposes and the necessity of the land for the purpose for which it was entered, for the same reasons stated in the case of Price et al., that it is not proper rebuttal testimony, but evidence that should have been introduced at the time counsel for claimant made out his original case.


The Board of Land Officers overrules the objection for the rea­sons given heretofore under rules 36, 37 and 41, and the evidence is admitted and made a part of the record in the case now under consideration. Exception noted to ruling.


Counsel for this protestant Emery Valentine offers in evidence now all the cross examination of the witnesses for the claimant, and the re-direct cross examination of the witness for the protestant John G. Price et al, and asks that the same be allowed as testimony and evidence in the case of Emery Valentine as protestant.


The evidence is so admitted as a part of the record in this case.


The hearing was then adjourned until one o'clock p.m. April 6, 1898.


The hearing was resumed at 1 o'clock p.m. April 6, 1898. Present: same as at 9 o'clock a.m.


Emery Valentine was called as witness in behalf of the protestants and being duly sworn testified as follows:

Q.  Give your name, residence, age and state whether or not you are a citizen of the United States?

A. Emory Valentine, residence Juneau, Alaska, age 30 years, a citizen of the United States.

Q. State if you are the same Emery Valentine who filed a protest in the matter of the application of Bernard Moore to make final proof and entry upon what is claimed to be the Moore Trading post at Skaguay, Alaska?

A. I am.



[page 3]


Q.  In that protest you state that you appear for yourself, the Skaguay Wharf improvement company, and by a power of attorney for several other individuals, I desire to know of you at this time how many of those protestants you now appear for, and wish to offer proof?

A. Three outside of the wharf Co., A. Bloom, J.M. Tanner, and

T. J. Stephens.

Q.  The property that you claim on behalf of these different persons and on account of the Wharf Co., is described in the protest by giving the number of feet in length and width, the same being in rectangular form and claimed to be a part of this 160 acres claimed by Moore, can you give any better description of it and particularly locate that property on the blue print which has been offered in this case and marked protestants Exhibit C, in testimony?

A. According to the town survey of Skaguay, the lots belonging to the Wharf Co., are lots number 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12, in block number 33, also lot number 12 in block 37.  The lots that I rep­resent under power of attorney are lot number 5 in block number 1, lot number 7 in block number 2 [both claimed by J. M. Tanner], lot number 12 in block number 2, lot number 3 in block 32, and for myself individually lot number 2 in block 32.      

Q. What is the Skaguay Wharf and Improvement Co.?

A. It consists of a partnership between myself, J. P. Jorgensen and E. O. Sylvester.

Q. Has your company built and constructed and now has in opera­tion a wharf in the town of Skaguay and approach thereto?  

A. We have.

Q. Referring to this blue print, I wish you would describe the location of your wharf as laid out on that blue print?

A. It commences at the junction of First Ave. and State streets, which was formerly Runnals street, and extends in a southerly di­rection 1492 feet to deep water.

Q. When did your company first commence the building of this wharf,


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when did they finish it, and how much did the wharf and the approach thereto cost you?

A.  Commenced the construction about the 30th day of August, 1897, we received the first vessel about the 10th of December,1897, we have expended on the wharf, incidental expenses and in the construction, nearly §39,000.00.

Q. Since what time and is your property now running and operating this for the benefit of incoming and outgoing boats and for the benefit of the public, and, if so, state approximately about how much business daily and weekly is being transacted over, upon and through the instrumentalities of this wharf and approach?

A. We received the first vessel about the tenth of December, 1897, and we are now doing a business amounting to about $8,000. per month.

Q. You are the same Emery Valentine who was on the stand and testified in the protest of John G. Price et al.?

A. I am.

Q.  State then from your observations of the ebb and flow of the tide as to what portion of this wharf and approach, if any, is built upon tide lands?

A. I think it is all built on tide lands, but probably a few feet of the upper end, of the approach.

Q. What is the width of the land on either side of the center line of the wharf that you claim is necessary for the purpose of carry­ing on and conducting the business of this Wharf Company?

A. We took on one side 150 feet of the approach and 300 feet on the other, because we intended some time to extend the face out another 160 feet on the side where the 300 feet is.

Q. What would this land be valuable for in carrying on the business for which the wharf is built?

A. Be valuable for wharf and warehouses in connection therewith.

Q. Is that the purpose for which your company claims it?

A.  It is.


[page 5]


Q. You have described lots number 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, in block number 33, also lot number 12 in block 37, as belonging to the Wharf Company, state how the wharf company came by those lots, what improvements is upon them, and for what purpose they were located or purchased for the company?

A. Lots number 7,8,9,10,11, and 12, in block 33, were used as a lumber yard; on lot number 12 in block 37 to bought that to erect a bunk house and boarding house for the laborers working on the wharf; we built a cabin on each of the lots in block number 33, fenced the whole tract in and cleared them off, and piled lumber on them; lot number 12 in block 37, we fenced that in set up pil­ings and built a house on it 16 x 20, I think.

Q. Do you remember about what dates these lots belonging to the wharf company were located?

A. No, I don't.  I think it was in the latter part of August.

Q. How were these lots when they were located, that is, as to whether or not any one was in possession of them?

A. I don't know, I didn’t locate them, we got them by purchase.

Q. Who was in possession of them at the time you purchased them?

A. That I don't know. Mr. Jorgensen came to me with the deeds, told me that he and Sylvester had bought these lots, we had to have some place to store our lumber that we just got in and asked me to take them to Juneau and have them recorded which I did.

Q. Did they have those shanties on then at the time this deal took place?

A. No. Jorgenson let the contract to some man there to build these cabins that are now on then. There was nothing but drift wood on them when I first saw them, that is, on the lots in block 33.

Q. The tide then at some time has ebbed and flown over these lots?

A. It has. I saw the water there in October and November, 1897, I believe.

Q. Has Bernard Moore, the applicant in this case, ever been in the


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possession of this company's property, or ever made any improve­ments thereon, or any other person or persons, except the grantors of the company, and the company?

A. It was never in his possession, so far as I know; there was no indication of any one ever having improved them, there was nothing but a wilderness of driftwood on them when I first saw them, and no one has ever done or made any improvement excepting under the orders of one of our company.

Q. At the time you purchased these lots, or at the time you were building your wharf there, did you have any knowledge of Bernard Moore laying any claim to any of this wharf property or the com­pany's lots?

A. I did not.

Q. Did anyone ever make any claim to you, and, if sp, who was it, to any of this land or property last mentioned?

 A. So far as know no one ever did, never to me at any rate.

Q. With the amount of business you are transacting with the company’s wharf are all of these lots last described and spoken of as the wharf company's lots necessary for the carrying on and transacting the business?

A. They are.

Q.  This lot that you speak of that has the bunk house on it, state what lot it is, as to whether or not it is on upland or tide land?

A.  It is lot 12 in block 37, I think it is on tide land for the reason that all of the drift was above it and we sat up pilings and the sills of the house are about 7 feet above the ground, and I have seen the tide up to the sills.

Q. Have you the written authority from these other parties to appear for then and conduct this protest? That is, I mean, those parties that you mentioned heretofore as being the only parties that you now seek to represent?

A. I have their acknowledged power of attorney.


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All preliminary questions as to the powers of attorney for identification and otherwise are admitted by the counsel for the claim­ant and no objection is made to their being introduced. Counsel for the protestant now offers in evidence power of attorney from J. M. Tanner to Emery Valentine, which is received and marked Exhibit A", in testimony.


Also the power of attorney from J.  T. Stephens to Emery Valentine which is received and marked Exhibit B, in testimony.


And also power of attorney from A. Bloom to Emery Val­entine, which is received and marked Exhibit C, in testimony.


Q.  I wish you would state the lot or lots claimed by Tanner, Bloom and those claimed by Stephens, and also tell what improvements if any the respective parties have upon them, and as to what time the improvements were placed there, if you know?

A. Tanner's lot is number 5, in block number 1, and number 7 in block number 2; On lot number 5 in block number 1 he built a stable, I don't know whether it was last fall or this spring, and later on he built a cabin in front; On lot number 7 in block number 2 he built a cabin there last fall in which he now lives and later he built or caused to be built two other cabins, last fall also, and this spring early he built a blacksmith shop on the back end of the lot.  T. J. Stephens has lot number 3 in block 32 which he located last September and built a cabin on it in which he now lives. Lot number 12 in block number 2 is held by A. Bloom, or a portion of it is held, I should say, being a tract 26 x 60 feet, on which he has built a house now known as the Kentucky. Lot number 2 in block 32 I located myself and have a small cabin on it. I took that for the purpose of some time putting up a residence for myself there. I located my lot In September, 1897.


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Q.  I wish you would state if you know the approximate value of the Improvements put upon each of these last described properties, when it was put there and by whom.

A. That I don't know excepting as to the Kentucky saloon, which cost about $1000, the property of A. Bloom.

Q.  Can you state the approximate value of the improvements on each of the other properties just described?

A. I should think on lot number 5 in block number 1, the stable and cabin cost about $150., and on lot number 7 in block number 2, I would say the four buildings cost from $500. to $600. And on T. J. Stephens lot number 3 in block 32, his cabin cost about $100. And the improvements on my lot cost about $80.

Q. While you were putting up the improvements, that is the wharf and its approach, clearing away and erecting the cabins upon these several lots which belong to the wharf company, did Ben Moore ever make any claim to you for any of this property?

A. No.

Q.  State if you know about the time the building was erected upon the Eton lot?

A. I think it was built in October, 1897.


Cross Examination.


Q. You don't know whether Ben served a written notice upon Sylvester about those wharf lots, do you?

A. No I do not, Sylvester never mentioned it to me if he did.

Q.  All of the property that you have mentioned is included within the survey now in evidence in the Price case and is a part of the ground claimed by Price and others under that survey?

A.  It is all included in the blue print map.

q. Were there any of the people you represent or yourself in possession of any of the ground claimed by you, or had they made any improvements thereon prior to the 25th day of March, 1897?



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A. I don't think any of them had ever been on the ground at that time.

Q. Is the wharf Company a stock company? Or la it owned in co-partnership?

A. Just a co-partnership.

Q. One of the Tanner lots, I think adjoins the lot upon which Capt.

Moore now resides?

A.  It adjoins that new building, the bank building, over towards the saw mill, from the Captain's corner.

Q. The other lot claimed by Mr. Tanner is between what is known in this Price case as the mess house and the store?

A. That s right.



[signed Emery Valentine]


I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony was read by me and

corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was then subscribed to by him at my office in Sitka, Alaska, this  6th day of April, 1898.


[signed John W. Dudley]





[page 12]


Emory Valentine was recalled and testified further as follows:


Q. Are the respective owners of all this property which you rep­resent in this protest in possession of their respective por­tion of the name now?

A. They are.

Q. And your company has been in the possession of this property claimed there since the time you purchased it?

A. We have.


[signed Emery Valentine]


I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony was read by me and corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was then subscribed to by him at my office in, Sitka, Alaska, this 6th day of April, 1898.





By request of protestants counsel, there being no objection, the case was held open pending the arrival of certain documentary evidence which said counsel desires to introduce in evidence.



[page 15]


Emery Valentine was recalled for the protestant and testified fur­ther as follows:


Q. State Mr. Valentine as to whether or not you and E. O. Sylvester and Jorgensen had entered into a co-partnership to build this wharf on August 18, 1897, and if not when did you first commence negotia­tions to build this wharf with Sylvester and Jorgensen?

A. I arrived in Skaguay on the 20th of August; the first time I had ever been there. On the 23th of August, I walked down to the beach in company with Geo. Rice, while standing there Mr. Jorgensen came off of the steamer "Al-ki" which had just come in, and in a kind of a joking mood I said Jim let’s build a wharf here. He seemed to take it more serious than I had thought he would; while we were talking Mr. Sylvester came up. Jorgensen proposed to Sylvester to go in with us and build a wharf. Sylvester proposed that we should go back up to some tent in the woods and talk it over. We went up on the trail to Fred Hyde’s tent that afternoon and there the partnership was made. We left on the 24th of August, on the Al-ki for Juneau, Jorgensen and I. Jorgensen went on to Wrangel I set men to work getting out pilings and sent up the pile driver on the 30th of August, and up to that time we had kept it a secret.



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Q. Had you or Sylvester or Jorgensen entered upon the wharf property before that time? the 30th of August,1897?

A. We had not.


Recross examination.

Q. Had you had any correspondence with Sylvester before the 18th of August relative to putting up a wharf there?
A. No sir.   


I hereby certify that the foregoing testimony, was read by me and corrected in the presence of the witness, and that it was then subscribed to by him at my office in Sitka, Alaska, this 6th day of April 1898.

[signed Emery Valentine]

[signed John W. Dudley]




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