109 U.S. 146 (1883), United States v. Mitchell

Citation109 U.S. 146, 3 S.Ct. 151, 27 L.Ed. 887
Case DateNovember 05, 1883
CourtUnited States Supreme Court

Page 146

109 U.S. 146 (1883)

3 S.Ct. 151, 27 L.Ed. 887




United States Supreme Court.

November 5, 1883

Page 147

Appeal from the Court of Claims.

[3 S.Ct. 151] This was a suit by the appellee, Charles Mitchell, to recover a balance which he claimed to be due him as Indian interpreter at the Santee agency in the state of Nebraska, under section 2070, title 23, of the Revised Statutes. That section, and section 2076, which constitutes part of the same title, and also relates to the compensation of interpreters, are as follows:

Sec. 2070. 'The salaries of interpreters lawfully employed in the service of the United States in Oregon, Utah, and New Mexico, shall be five hundred dollars a year each, and of all so employed elsewhere, four hundred dollars a year each.'

Sec. 2076. 'The several compensations prescribed by this title shall be in full of all emoluments and allowances whatsoever.'

It appears from the findings of the court of claims that the appellee was an interpreter at the Santee Indian agency in the state of Nebraska, duly appointed under section 2068 of the Revised Statutes, and that he held the office and discharged its duties for several periods between July 1, 1878, and November 22, 1882, his whole term of service amounting to three years and seven months. During all this time, instead of the salary of $400 per annum, as provided in section 2070, he was paid only at the rate of $300 per annum, for which he gave a receipt in full for his services, congress having appropriated that sum only for his yearly compensation during his term of service. [3 S.Ct. 152] The appellee, contending that he was entitled to a salary at the rate of $400 per annum, brought this suit to recover the difference between his salary at that rate and the sum which he was actually paid. The court of claims, adopting the views of the appellee, rendered a judgment in his favor for $353.33, from which the United States appealed.


Page 148

*Asst. Atty. Gen. Simons and and J. S. Blair, for appellant.

Geo. A. King, for appellee.



It is contended on behalf of the United States that, by the appropriation acts which cover the period for which the appellee claims compensation, congress expressed its purpose to suspend the operation of section 2070 of the Revised Statutes, and to reduce for that period the salaries of the appellee and other interpreters of the same class from...

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