2 Replies Latest reply on Jun 28, 2019 4:59 PM by LOC Manuscript Division

    11-09-1855 Franklin Pierce Executive Order


      Where can I obtain this document?  Why isn't it in the Federal Register?  An unrescinded Executive Order is still part of the law of the land and should be available to us all? 

        • Re: 11-09-1855 Franklin Pierce Executive Order
          Jason Atkinson Ranger

          Dear Denise Jarman,


          Thank you for posting your request on History Hub! 

          As you did not provide any details about the topic of the order, it is difficult to be sure exactly which order you are requesting information about. Might you be referring to the 1855 establishment of the Coast Reservation (latter known as the Siletz Reservation) in Oregon, as described in the Oregon Encyclopedia?

          If so, relevant documents were published in 1912 by the U.S. Office of Indian Affairs, Department of the Interior, in the book Executive Orders Relating Indian Reservations From May 14, 1855 to July 1, 1912.  They are on pages 151-153 under the heading “Siletz Reservation.”

          The book is available in hard copy though the Library of Congress and you can also check local law and academic libraries.  Digitized versions can be found at Archives.org and the HathiTrust Digital Library.  None of these websites are affiliated with the National Archives and Records Administration. 

          It is possible that the National Archives may have records relating to the establishment of the Coast Reservation. If so, they would most likely be in Record Group 75 Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. For further information about Indian Affairs records, you can email National Archives at Washington, DC - Textual Reference (RDT1) archives1reference@nara.gov.

          You might also be interested in the Franklin Pierce Papers in the custody of the Library of Congress.

          As for why these documents are not published in the Federal Register, please keep in mind that the Office of the Federal Register was not established until July 26, 1935, well after the Pierce presidency.  The practice of numbering and publishing executive orders had not yet been developed.

          We hope this information is helpful. Best of luck with your research!


          1 person found this helpful
          • Re: 11-09-1855 Franklin Pierce Executive Order
            LOC Manuscript Division Tracker

            Hello Denise Jarman,


            The Library of Congress has a subscription to the ProQuest Congressional database, and a search  of executive orders on that resource yielded a document that may be the one you seek.


            The database entry provides the following information:


            Accession No:  1855-38-5

            Title:  Oregon Territory: Withdrawal of certain Pacific Coast area lands for the Coast, Umpqua, and Willamette Tribes of Indians

            Date:  Nov. 9, 1855

            Signed:  Signed by the President

            Unnumbered Executive Orders, Directives, and Proclamations

            Length:  10 p.

            Source:  This content was originally sourced from the Records from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, 1850-1892, Record Group 75, National Archives and Records Administration

            Administration:  Franklin Pierce (1853-1857)

            Related File:  1855-38-5: "partially revoked by 1865-38-1, Dec. 21, 1865"

            Permalink:  https://congressional.proquest.com/congressional/docview/t67.d72.1855-38-5?accountid=12084


            The document consists of ten pages of correspondence and a map.  Page 4 consists of a brief note signed by Franklin Pierce and dated November 9, 1855.  The facsimile of Pierce’s note is barely legible, but one possible transcription of the text is:


            “The reservation of the land

            within denoted by blue shaded

            lines, is hereby made for the

            purposes indicated in letter of

            the Commissioner of the General

            Land Office of the 10th Sept. inst.

            and letter of the Secretary of the

            Interior of the 8th Nov. 1855.”


            The ten-page document is available through the database in .pdf format.  If you care to contact the Manuscript Division by email at < mss@loc.gov >, I will be glad to send you a copy.


            We hope this information is useful.


            Reference Staff

            Manuscript Division

            Library of Congress

            3 people found this helpful