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October 30, and on October 31 a full report was forwarded. The land required, 47.32 acres, was claimed to be owned by the Oregon Steam Navigation Company, who offered to sell it at the rate of $200 per acre, reserving-to themselves the right of way across for a railroad. The honorable Secretary of War declined to purchase with the reservation asked by the company, and on December 31 the engineer in charge received orders from the Chief of Engineers, under date of December 17, to commence proceedings for the condemnation of the land under the laws of Oregon. On the day of the receipt of this order (December 31) all the papers in the case were placed in the hands of the United States district attorney, who was requested to at once take action for the condemnation of the land. On the same day the district attorney informed the engineer in charge that under the laws of Oregon, section 24, page 350, general laws, edition of 1874, no more than 60 feet in width could be condemned, and as this would not give the United States sufficient land for their purposes, the facts were at once reported to the department. On the 31st of December, the engineer in charge notified the Oregon Steam Navigation Company that orders had been received to proceed to condemn the land, and stated that he would gladly forward any further communication they desired to make to the Chief of Engineers. On January 1, the vice-president of the company requested that action for condemnation might be suspended for a few days, as he believed arrangements could be made whereby his company would waive their request to reserve the right of way for a railroad. After consultation with the vice-president of the company, the engineer in charge agreed to leave out 4,45 acres which were desired in order to use as roads for access to the county road, and to get a house for the use of the engineer party while work was in progress, and the company agreed to waive their request for a right of way, to give the United States the right of way across their land to the county road, and the use of the house desired as long as the work of construction was in progress. In the mean time another question had arisen to give trouble : In the autumn of 1875 the Columbia River Improvement Company had had condemned for their use, for canal purposes, a strip of land, 60 feet wide, containing 5 acres ; the Oregon Steam Navigation Company claimed that their title was not good, but as yet it had not been carefully examined for the United States by the district attorney; for this 5 acres, under date of December 31, 1877, this company, through their attorney, asked the enormous sum of $10,000; afterward, under date of February 20, the company reduced their offer to $2,000, but too late for action, as orders had already been received to proceed as soon as practicable to condemn the land. On January 7, 1878, the engineer in charge reported to the Chief of Engineers the last offer of the Oregon Steam Navigation Company and the offer of the Columbia River Improvement Company, dated December 31. On January 12, learning that a law had been passed by the Oregon legislature on October 20, 1876, authorizing the United States to take proceedings for condemnation of all land required for canal purposes, provided such property could not be purchased, the engineer in charge immediately notified the Chief of Engineers of this law. All the facts having been placed before the honorable Secretary of War, telegraphic orders were received on the evening of February 18 directing proceedings for condemnation to be commenced under the laws of Oregon as soon as practicable. On the morning of February 19 all the papers in the case were placed before the United States district attorney, and on February 23 the engineer in charge made the necessary affidavit as to the land required before the clerk of the

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