The purpose of this Article is to analyze the historical development of Washington's alien land law from the birth of the territory in 1853 to the drafting of the state constitution in 1889. Because alien land law necessarily involves relationships among people, this Article focuses not only on historical legal sources such as statutes, constitutional material, and judicial opinions, but also on the underlying social forces that compelled change in the law.
Allison Brownell Tirres, Property Outliers: Non-Citizens, Property Rights and State Power, 27 Geo. Immigr. L.J. 77 (2012). HeinOnline
This article posits that alienage law is a property outlier, since few of the norms of modern property law have been applied to non-citizens.
Keith Aoki, No Right to Own?: The Early Twentieth-Century "Alien Land Laws" as a Prelude to Internment, 40 B.C. L. Rev. 37 (1998), HeinOnline.
This Article recounts briefly the history and effects of the "Alien Land Laws" enacted in western states in the second and third decades of the twentieth century. These laws linked the virulent nineteenth century Sinophobia that culminated in the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act with the mass internment of Japanese Americans in the mid-twentieth century. Initially, these laws barred "aliens ineligible to citizenship" from owning fee simple title in agricultural land and prohibited leases for such land lasting longer than three years. Ultimately, the ownership bar expanded to include all "real property," a term broad enough to encompass sharecropping contracts and shares of stock in corporations owning agricultural land as legally cognizable interests in land, and therefore, off-limits to alien ownership.
Megan Dooly, International Land Grabbing: How Iowa Anti-Corporate Farming and Alien Landowner Laws, as a Model, Can Decrease the Practice in Developing Countries, 19 Drake J. Agric. L. 305 (2014), HeinOnline.
Michael Cornelius Kelly, A Wavering Course: United States Supreme Court Treatment of State Laws Regarding Aliens in the Twentieth Century, 25 Geo. Immigr. L.J. 701 (Spring 2011), HeinOnline.
Jennifer Scott Moradi, Alien Ownership of Land in Oklahoma, 79 Okla. B.J. 233 (2014), HeinOnline.
Frances Lee Ansley,
Roots of title in the New World: pp. 1521-23
Slavery: pp. 1523-26
Race and the Constitution: pp. 1539-54
Elizabeth Loeb, As "Every Schoolboy Knows": Gender, Land, and Native Title in the United States, 32 N.Y.U. Rev. L. & Soc. Change 253 (2008), HeinOnline.
Joseph William Singer, Indian Title: Unraveling the Racial Context of Property Rights, or How to Stop Engaging in Conquest, 10 Alb. Gov't L. Rev. 1 (2017), Albany Governmental Law Review.
Joseph William Singer, The Indian States of America: Parallel Universes & Overlapping Sovereignty, 38 Am. Indian L. Rev. 1 (2014), Indian and Aboriginal Law Commons.
Joseph William Singer, Property and Coercion in Federal Indian Law: The Conflict Between Critical and Complacent Pragmatism, 63 S. Cal. L. Rev. 1821 (1990), HeinOnline.
Maivan Clech Lam, The Kuleana Act Revisited: The Survival of Traditional Hawaiian Commoner Rights in Land, 64 Wash. L. Rev. 233 (1989), HeinOnline.
Abstract from Delgado & Stefancic, Critical Race Theory: An Annotated Bibliography:
Analyzes the historical context of the Kuleana Act of 1850 and cases interpreting it. The Act was designed by King Kamehameha III to give native commoners fee simple rights to land. Points out that although the Act may have been well intentioned, authorities ignored traditional Hawaiian land use, which regarded all commoners as tenants in common to all land, and frustrated the goals of Kamehameha's government. Further, the commoners were only apportioned a small amount of the available land to divide into fee simple holdings. Argues that the old regime of land rights survives the system imposed by Western demands, and that Hawaiian land must now be reassessed and granted to the descendants of the earlier commoners.
Justin Lee, The Curious Case of Land Inheritance: Metaphor and Hawaiian Land Tenure, 13 APLPJ 252 (2011-2012), HeinOnline.
Melody Kapilialoha MacKenzie, Ke Ala Loa - The Long Road: Native Hawaiian Sovereignty and the State of Hawai'i, 47 Tulsa L. Rev. 621 (2012), HeinOnline.
D. Kapua'ala Sproat, Wai Through Kānāwai: Water for Hawai'i's Streams and Justice for Hawaiian Communities, 95 Marq. L. Rev. 127 (2011-2012), HeinOnline.