THE CONGRESS: Waterlogged

For almost 150 years, the U.S. had got along well enough without deciding who owned the mineral rights to land beneath its coastal waters—from low-water mark to the three-mile limit. Last week Congress voted to decide it, once & for all.

There had been lawsuits aplenty about lands under water, and more than 50 cases had gone to the Supreme Court. But the U.S. Government was not a party to any of them, and the nearest approach to a mineral-rights case was one involving Florida sponge-fishers. There was not much money in sponges, and at that time (1912) the U.S....

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