|Pages 180-207||Pages 229-254|
|HELD AT JAMES CITTIE BY PROROGATION FROM
SEPTEMBER THE TENTH 1663, TO SEPTEMBER THE
29TH 1664, AND IN THE SIXTEENTH YEARE
OF THE RAIGNE OF OUR SOVERAIGNE
LORD KING CHARLES THE SECOND.*
|Sir W. Berkeley, governor.|
|Priority of payment to the country creditors.||Edi 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS many persons comeing into this country possessed of vissible estates doe by that meanes obteyne credit here and contract several engagements, notwithstanding which engagements past for valuable considerations, it often happens that the whole estate is by pretended accounts out of England and other forreign parts taken away, and the country creditors deprived by that meanes of their just dues, which the present grand assembly takeing into their serious consideration have therefore enacted that in such cases all courts shall give priority of judgment for debts contracted in the country, if the clayme be made withing twelve months, before which tyme noe forreigne debt shalbe pleadable unlesse there be assests (a) remaining after the country debts are paid; But this assembly intending hereby only the prevention of ffraud, not the prejudice of any just creditor that hath bona fide adventured his goods into this||Purvis 125.|
Judgments for debts contracted in Virginia to be first rendered, & have prop'ty in payment.
|* The commencement of acts of this session taken from the Ch. Cit. and P. Rand. MSS. In the Northumberland MS. it is, 'Att a GRAND ASSEMBLY held att James Citty, September the 20th 1664, Annoq. Regni. Regis Caroli scdi. 16.'|
|(a) 'Effects' in Purvis, 'assetts' in Northb. Ch. Cit :& p. Rand. MSS.|
|country, have therefore further enacted that if any ffactor comeing out of England or any other of his majesties plantations, shall within two months after his arrivall make entry in any court of record of the name of the person adventuring by him, and the value of the goods adventured, every such adventurer shall, if the ffactor dye have equall right of pleading with the inhabitants of this country; But in case noe such entry be made, all goods imported then shalbe taken to be the proper estate of the possessor; And to the end that all merchants and all persons concerned may have notice hereof, It is further enacted that this act shall not be in full force untill the first of March 1665.||Factors, by entering the names of their principals in crt. may
secure to them equal advantages with inhabitants.|
Commentcem't of this act.
|ffronteers to be seated with ffowre able men.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS experience hath evidenced that the weaknes of ffronteer plantations hath animated the Indians to commit severall horrid murthers, this grand assembly endeavouring as much as may be the prevention thereof for the future, have enacted, and by these preseats doe enact that noe person shall hereafter seate above the plantations already seated but with fowre able hands well armed at his first sitting downe, provided that such persons as have already pattented land in any remote parts may have seaven yeares granted them to strengthen each perticuler plantation with the aforesaid number of ffowre men or else desert their land.||Purvis. 126.|
Plantations on the frontiers to be settled with 4 able hands, well armed.
|Liberty to plant.||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS many endeavours have been made to enduce the province of Maryland to comply with this government in the endeavours of lessening the quantity and advance the value of tobacco, which could it have beene effected had undoubtedly very much augmented the happiness and prosperity of both||Purvis 127.|
|countryes; but since the government of Marryland have after soe many treaties and ffrustrated expectations still continued their averseness, this grand assembly not thinking fitt to lay a restriction upon this government while they have soe greate a liberty have therefore repealed, annulled, and doe by these presents repeale and annull all acts and proclamations whatsoever any way restrayning the inhabitants of this country from making the utmost benefit of their labour this ensueing yeare.||All acts & proclamat'ns laying restraints on the plant'g of tobacco repealed; the governm't of Maryland refus'g to accede to any arrangement on that subject.|
|An act for proportioning all actions to the fforenoone and afternoone.||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS the dispatch of business in generall courts is very much retarded by the liberty granted to all persons arrested to the said courts to appeare at any tyme within the day assigned in the writt, by the plaintiffs, by which meanes most causes are referred to the afternoones, and that tyme being insuffitient to heare and determine the said causes, the court is thereby necessitated to put business out of course by referring them to the next morning; ffor prevention of which inconvenience, this grand assembly have thought fitt to enact, and be it by the authority thereof enacted that all writts that shall for the future issue out of the secretaryes office retornable to the generall court shall be devided according to the respective dayes into ten for ffornooone. and ten for the afternoone, and if the plaintiff shall at that tyme faile in appearing to prosecute, a nonsuite may be granted against him, and judgment against the defendant or baile or sherriffe in case the defendant faile of his attendance to answer.||Purvis 127.|
Writs to be returned to gen. court, some to the forenoon & some to the afternoon, of each day.
|An act concerning the regulating the Secretaryes office.||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS it is evident that in all countries the well or ill keeping of the records is of the highest consequence as being the only meanes to preserve||Purvis 128.|
|* The running title of the acts of this session in edit. 1733 and 1752, is 'Anno decimo sexto Caroli secundi regis.'|
|the rights and proprieties of all inhabitants of the same, and since it appeares that there hath been a great neglect in keeping the records in this country, for remedy whereof for the future, This grand assembly at the instance of the present secretary Thomas Ludwell esq. have thought fitt to enact, and be it by the authority thereof enacted that capt. Robert Ellison, Mr Walter Chiles, and the clerke of the assembly be appointed by the house to examine and state the records as they now are; And that for the future soe soone as there is a place convenient to receive them, no person may have a view of them (unless upon publique order) but the clerke of the office or whome else the secretary shall appoint; It being impossible to keepe the records certaine, when they are prostituted to the view of every one that will looke into them, who may as their interest leads rend out what may make against them, Provided that any person haveing occasion may be with the clerke when he makes his search, for which search there shalbe paid to the clerke for his ffee one shilling or ten pounds of tobacco besides paying for the coppy of the thing searched for, And it is further enacted that buy halve that ffee shall be paid to the clerke for search in the county court records.||Certain persons to state the present condit'n of the
No person to view them but by public order except the clk. or other pers'n appointed by the secretary.
Clerk's fee for a search.
|An act for convening of the people upon the summons of the burgesses to adjourned assemblies.||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS the principall end of convention of assemblies is the making provision for the peoples safety and redresse of their Greivances, which being usually made knowne to the burgesses of the respective counties att the place and time of their election, which upon adjournment of assemblies is not done by the reason the sherriffes doe not make publication of their summons, wherefore it is by the grand assembly and authority thereof enacted that upon issueing the summons (a) for convention of the burgesses at this or||Purvis 128.|
Notice to be given to the people by publication in the parish churches, of the convening
|(a) The words 'upon issueing the summons,' omitted in Purvis.|
|ffuture assemblies adjourned, timely notice may be given to the people by publication in the parish churches of the day appointed by the sherriffe for their meeting at the usuall places of election to present their greivances to their burgesses.||of the burgesses that they may make known their grievances.|
|An act concerning Widdows thirds.||Edi. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS some doubts have risen about the proportioning and assigning the thirds of the estate of persons intestate to their widdow, It is, for explanation, enacted by this grand assembly and the authority thereof that the estate of all persons intestate, or (a) where the will is doubtfull, whether personall or reall, vizt. land cleered, or wood land, and houseing may be according to the quantity and quallity of the said land and houseing divided equally into thirds, and the widdow to have her choice after the division.||Purvis 129.|
Dower to be allotted accord'g to quantity & quality, and the widow to have choice of a third after division.
WHEREAS there was by a former act of assembly made at James Citty, March 20th 1661, an imposition laid upon rum and pavele sugar; the house upon consideration of the difficulties of collecting the said impost, and the defining pavele sugar, and principally the obstructions it may bring to the trade of the country have thought fitt to enact that the said act may be totally repealed.
Edi. 1733 and 1752.
Act imposing a duty on rum & pavele sugar repealed.
[See ante pa. 128.]
|(a) The Word 'or' omitted in Purvis, and Ch. Cit. and P. Randolph MSS. which entirely varies the sense.|
|An act concerning arrests in Court times.||Edi. 1733, 1752 and 1769.|
|WHEREAS diverse persons repayring to James Citty in the times of quarter courts and assemblies, some about service of the publique, some to give evidence, others to prosecute their other occasions, which by the malice of some persons takeing them at an advantage are arrested to a present answer, ffor feare whereof diverse persons doe absent themselves to the greate prejudice of the publique affaires and the obstruction of justice, It is therefore ordered that noe arrests five dayes before the general courts or assemblies or five days after the general courts or assemblies be served upon any person at James Citty, except he be an inhabitant of that county.||Purvis 130.|
Witnesses suitors and others privileg'd from arrest, at Jas. City, five days before & after gen. courts & assemblies, except inhabitants of James City county.
|The original signed by Sir WM. BERKELEY, Gov'r. |
ROBERT WYNNE, Speaker.
(Note to Northumberland MS.)
HELD AT JAMES CITTIE
BY PROROGATION FROM SEPTEMBER THE TWENTIETH
1664, TO OCTOBER THE TENTH 1665, AND IN THE
SEVENTEENTH YEARE OF THE REIGNE OF OUR
SOVERAIGNE LORD KING CHARLES
WHEREAS it hath beene scrupuled whether a perticuler justice of the peace might in any case issue an attachment, this assembly hath thought fitt to declare that in case of suspicion of any persons intention to remove out of the county where he dwells, either to conceal himselfe in the country or withdraw himselfe out of the county [country] whereby the ordinary proceedings at law cannot be had against him, it is and may be lawfull for any justice of the peace to issue an attachment against soe much of the estate of the said person soe suspected to remove, as by the clayme made shall in his judgment appeare due to the creditor, repleviable by security given or appearance at the next court, Provided that the said justice take suffitient security of him that desires the attachment to pay the damage the court shall award to the defendant in case the plaintiffe be cast in the suite.
Edit. 1733 and 1752
[See vol. 1, p. 409, 471.
Attachments grantable by a single justice, ag'st absconding debtors.
|* From the Ch. Cit. MS. In the Northb. MS. the commencement is 'Att a Grand Assembly held att James Citty, October 10th Anno Dom. 1665, Annoq. Regni Rs. Car. Scdi. 17 0.|
|An act repealing the act laying a tax upon horses. (a)||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS the act for levying the encouragement for killing of wolves upon horses by reason of the greate inequallity thereof imposeth too greate a burthen upon those ffronteer counties which have most wolves killed, and fewest horses to beare the charge; It is therefore enacted by this present grand assembly and the authority thereof that the act shalbe, and hereby is repealed, and the former law for paying the encouragement per poll be revived and continued.||Purvis 131.|
Act XIX of Dec. 1662, repealed.
|An act prohibiting the sale of armes to Indians.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS there was formerly a law in force prohibiting the armes, ammunition, or guns to the Indians, which upon consideration of the said Indians being furnished by the Dutch was omitted; It being then thought impolitick to debarre ourselves from soe greate an advantage as might accrue to us by the Indian trade, when we could not prevent their supply; yet since those envious neighbours are now by his majesties justice and providence (b) removed from us, and the trade now likely to be in our hands, and none to furnish them besides ourselves, who in these times of eminent danger have scarce ability to furnish our owne people, (c) It is therefore enacted by this grand assembly and the authority thereof that the sale of armes, gunpowder, and shott be wholly prohibited; and that whoever contrary to the intent of this act shall by himselfe or any other sell or barter powder, shott, gun or ammunition to any Indian, shalbe fined ten thousand pounds of tobacco or suffer two yeares imprisonment without bayle or mainprize for the first offence, and for the second to be proceeded against as ffellons.||Purvis 131.|
[See vol. 1, p. 219, 255, 441, 525.
Sale of arms & ammunition to Indians prohibited.
|(a) The title of this act varies in Purvis from that of the Ch. Cit. and P. Rand. MSS. and the edi. 1733 & 1752; and they all differ from the Northb. MS. which is certainly the most correct.|
|(b) 'Prudence' in Purvis. (c) 'Wants' in Purvis.|
WHEREAS the act against exportation of hides and leather lay not equall injunction and penalty on tanners for exporting shoes and tanned leather, nor on masters of ships, as is laid on seller and buyer of hides and leather to be exported, it is enacted for further strengthning thereof, and better prevention of such exportations that it shalbe inserted by the collectors in the bonds of all masters and comanders of ships to be lyable for all hides and calveskins and deer skins that shall with his knowledge be brought on board or be exported in any of their ships or vessells except such as they shalbe lycensed to carry for the shipps necessary occasions to the number of eight at most for a great shipp, and for a smaller shipp accordingly the said lycenses to issue from the severall collectors before such hides are shipped, and to be marked by the said collectors, and that all owners of tanhouses and other persons that shall export or sell to be exported any shooes, hides or leather shall forfeite and pay for each hide or deer skin soe sold to his knowledge to be exported, one thousand pounds of tobacco, and for each paire of shooes sold to his knowledge to be exported one hundred pounds of tobacco, and the like penalty to be layd on all that shall buy any tanned hides, skins, or shooes to export, or found aboard to be exported.
Purvis 132, & Edit 1733 and 1752.
Further restraints on exportation of hides, & extended to leather & shoes.
|How judgment shall be given upon penall acts. ||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS several doubts have arisen in giving judgment upon a penall law, as stealing of hoggs, takeing away of boates, and the like, where severall||Purvis 132.|
|* The running title of the acts of this session in edit. 1733 and 1752, is, 'Anno decimo septimo Caroli secundi regis.'|
| The title of this act, in Purvis, is 'An act concerning the intent of some former penalties.' In the Ch. Cit. & P. Rand. MSS and the editions of 1733 & 1752 the same, except the words 'penal acts' instead of 'penalties.'|
|persons may be actors in committing the same offence, vizt. whether the penalties imposed are to be levyed upon all the actors in general and the payment of the penalty specified in the act by any one should acquitt the rest or else judgment passe for the entire summe against every perticuler and individuall person; Bee it enacted for the better dettering people from committing such offences, that in all such cases every perticuler offender may be singly prosecuted and have judgment passe against him for payment of the whole fine; and because the laws have been silent in prescribeing (a) any way to punish servants guilty of the breach of such acts where freemen are (b) to pay a fine, of which they are during their service wholly uncapable, and might be incouraged to attempt it should their punishment be respited until their time of service is expired, Be it therefore enacted that in all cases where a ffreeman is punishable by fine a servant shall receive corporall punishment, vizt. for every five hundred pounds of lashes, twenty lashes, and soe many such severall punishments as are five hundred pounds of tobacco included in the fine unles their master or other acquaintance will redeem them by makeing payment, And it is further enacted that if any person by procurement of the servant upon promise and agreement for future service shall pay the fine and release him from punishment, such agreement made shall (notwithstanding the coverture) bind such servant to performance after his time by indenture is expired. And further that the master have remedy against the servant in case of is trespessing against him.|| Where several are guilty of an offence against a penal law,
each may be severally fined to the whole amount of the penalty.|
Where freemen are punishable by fine servants punishable by whipping, at a certain ratio of lashes for every 500 lbs. of tobacco
|(a) 'In prescribing' in Purvis, Ch. Citty & P. Rand. MSS. 'how' in Northb. MS.|
|(b) Instead of 'where freemen are,' as in Purvis, and Ch. Citty and P. Read. MSS. 'whereof they are incapable' in Northb. MS.|
|An act concerning the bounding of counties and parishes.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS there is a law that binds us to the bounding of our lands, Be it enacted by this grand assembly and the authority thereof that the same law be in force to the bounding of parishes and counties.||Purvis 133.|
Counties and parishes to be bounded.
|An act repealing the act of ten shillings per hoggshead.||Edit 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS the imposition of ten shillings per hogshead on vessells tradeing from New England and the adjacent plantations hath probably hindred their tradeing in this colony and drawne much trade into Marryland, which the burgesses takeing into their serious consideration and requesting the right honourable Sir William Berkeley, knight and governour (who most heartily and willingly granted) to take off the said impost of ten shillings per hogshead, Bee it therefore enacted by this grand assembly that all vessells tradeing from New England or any of the adjacent plantations in America shall from henceforth be free from the imposition of ten shillings per hogshead and pay noe other dues, duties or customes, then any ships or vessells tradeing here out of England or any other of his majesties dominions.||Purvis 133.|
Vessels trad'g From N. Eng. or adjacent plantations, exempted from export duty of 10s. per hhd.
|An act concerning Indians.||Edit. 1752.|
|WHEREAS at a grand assembly held at James Citty, September 10th 1663, it was provided that where any murther was committed by the Indians upon the English, the next towne of the Indians was to use their utmost endeavours for discovering the actors and doers thereof, and in regard the said act was||Purvis 133 & edit. 1733.|
Act concern'g murders committed by N. Indians extended to all others.
|only lymitted upon the northern Indians. This grand assembly have thought fitt to enact and be it enacted that the said law be made a generall law against all Indians whatsoever, and where any murthers be committed upon the English, the next towne is to use all their care and diligence in finding the doers and actors of the said murthers. And be it further enacted that if any Englishman is murthered, the next towne shalbe answerable for it with their lives or liberties to the use of the publique, and that the right honourable the governour be humbly requested forthwith to impower such persons as his honour shall think fitt in each county on such occasions for putting the said law into imediate execution, and that it be made knowne to all Indians whatsoever by these persons soe commitionated within two months after the said law is in force. And be it further enacted by this grand assembly that the said Indians shall not have power within themselves to elect or constitute their owne Werowance or chiefe commander, but the present honourable governour and his successors from time to time shall constitute and authorize such person in whose fidelity they may finde greatest cause to repose a confidence to be the comander of the respective townes; And in case the Indians shall refuse their obedience to, or murther such person, then that nation of Indians soe refuseing or offending to be accompted enemies and rebells and to be proceeded against accordingly. And whereas the careles manner of the English in going unarmed into churches, courts, and other publique meetings may probably in time invite the Indians to make some desperate attempt upon them, It is further enacted that the honourable the governour be requested to issue his commands to the officers of the militia to take care to prevent the same; And it is further enacted that any person or persons that shall harbour, entertaine, or imploy any Indian, shalbe fined five thousand pounds of tobacco or suffer one yeares imprisonment without bayle or maineprise, unles such as shall give suffitient security to the county courts, and upon such security obteyne a certificate from the said court, and upon that certificate a lycence from the governour. And whereas by the former articles of agreement, it was provided that no Indians which are seated on the southside of James||If a white man be murdered, the next Ind'n town
Commiss'ners appointed in each county to enforce this law.
Indians not to appoint their own Werowance or chief commander, but the gov'r to appoint him.
Indians refusing to obey, or murder'g him to be accounted enemies & rebels.
Inhabitants enforced to go armed to ch'ch courts, &c.
Pen'ty for harbouring or entertaining an Indian without license.
|river should come over the Black water or the southerne branches thereof, It is hereby enacted that the said (a) bounds from the head of Black water to the Apamatack Indian towne and thence cross the river to the Monikon towne be the bounds of the Indians on the southside of James river.||Boundaries of Indians on the south side of James river.|
|An act concerning the building of a ffort.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|IN obedience to his majesties royall commands for the better defence of the country, this assembly have thought fitt to enact, and be it enacted that a ffort be built with all convenient expedition, where the right honourable the governour shall thinke most convenient, and that ffourescore thousand pounds of tobacco be levyed to that purpose besides the sale of the king of Potomacks land. Be it further enacted that his honour give power to presse carpenters labourers and other workemen, and that the carpenters finding themselves dyett and lodging be allowed fforty five pounds of tobacco per day; and for the expediting and finishing the said ffort, It is hereby enacted that it shalbe lawfull for the surveyor of the workemen to cause pines to be fallen on any mans land for that use, paying to the proprietor of the land six pence for each tree; And it is further enacted that each person of the trayned bands in James Citty and Surry counties contribute six days worke towards the perfecting the said ffort, and bring their owne provisions with them. And be it further enacted that captain William Bassett be authorized surveyor of the whole worke and have command of the workemen therein employed, the country gratifying the said captain Bassett with tenn thousand pounds of tobacco: And this assembly takeing into their consideration what person be fittest to keep the||Purvis 136.|
A fort to be erected.
Gov. to fix on the site.
To press workmen.
Price of pine trees.
Train bands to work on fort.
Surveyor of the work.
|(a) In Purvis and edi. 1733, 'southern branches of Blackwater, from the head of those branches to the present Appomattuck Indian town, and thence cross the river by a continued line to the Monakin towne &c.'|
|ffort and be captain of the same have enacted, and it is hereby enacted that the souldiers that attend the governor att generall courts be ordered to keepe the ffort, those courts excepted where a single centinell will be suffitient, and that the captain of the guard have the command of the ffort and receive a fitting annuall satisfaction for the same, And that the souldiers likewise have a competent addition to their former pay, And it is further enacted that noe tobaccoes for these occasions be levyed this year.||Who to garrison the fort.|
|An act preparatory to a stint or cessation.||Purvis 137 & edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS it hath beene the constant endeavour of the governour, councell and assembly those three yeares to introduce a stint or cessation or any other probable meanes of repayring the present ruinous condition of this country, occasioned by the meane and inconsiderable value of our present only staple comodity tobacco, from which wee have been hitherto diverted by the continued aversenesse of the Marylanders though earnestly sollicited to comply with us in any way, and the seameing impossibility of satisfying the debts due to the merchants, who though frequent inviters of us to lessen the quantity of tobacco have never offered the least proposall of the abatement of any the least parte of their debts which wee might justly expect from them in consideration of their soe certaine a gaine by the advancement of a price in case of a stint or cessation, yet that it may by ourselves (since our neighbours in Marryland refuse their concurrence) evidence to the uttermost of our power, our readinesse to obey his majesties royall commands laid upon us to that effect; and to testifye to the whole world our willingnesse to comply with the merchants in dischargeing our owne obligations to them which cannot well be performed in tobacco if the quantity be lessened by our endeavours to divert our labours to other more advantageous imployments; and that we may the better enduce the inhabitants of this country to imbrace and promote those staple comodities hereafter||Reasons for lessening the quantity of tobacco in order to improve its quality & price.|
|named in this act, we have thought fitt to enact, and be it enacted by the governour, councell and burgesses of this grand assembly and the authority thereof, that whoever after the first day of September, in the yeare 1666, shall contract a debt of what value soever in tobacco or mony shall have it in his choice to discharge the said debt in kind or in good merchantable wheate, valued per bushell conteyned eight gallons Winchester measure at thirty pounds of tobacco or three shillings in mony (which at the price most times in this country currant are of equall value) or in fflax rough dressed at three pounds of tobacco or fowre pence in mony per pound; not that it is intended hereby that any person not indebted shalbe compelled to sell his wheat or fflax at that rate, but that every one be left to take the advantage of the markett this price being sett only to demonstrate our equitable and just resolutions to satisfye our engagements. And for prevention of all evasions of the true intent of this act, Be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid that this act shall reteyne its force, any contract made to the contrary notwithstanding.||D'ts contracted after a certain day, for money or tobacco, may be
discharged in kind, or mercha'ble wheat at 30 lb tobac. or 3s. in money per bushel.|
Or, flax at 3 lb tobacco or 4d. per pounds.
Not to compel those not indebted to sell at those rates.
|And this act as the most just and effectuall expediment to produce all the good ends aforesaid, the governour, councell and burgesses of this assembly of Virginia, doe in all humility present to the most prudent and gratious consideration and approbation of his most sacred majestie, and to the Lords of his majesties most honourable privy councell.||Refer'd to the king and council.|
| WHEREAS at a generall court held at James Citty, March 25th 1665, it
is provided and accordingly ordered that noe seconds or slips should reputed merchantable
tobacco, this assembly have
||Adjudication of the general court, that seconds or slips not merchantable, confirmed.|
|* This act omitted in Purvis, and all the revisals and MSS. except the Northb. in which it has no title.|
| thought fitt, and accordingly ordered that the same be ratifyed and confirmed.|
This assembly was adjourned to the 10th of March, 1666, unless the governour saw cause to summon it sooner.
|Signed by Sir WILLIAM BERKELEY, |
ROBERT WYNNE, Speaker.
(Note to edit. 1733 & 1752.)
HOLDEN AT JAMES CITIE
THE FIFTH DAY OF JUNE 1666, AND IN THE
EIGHTEENTH YEAR OF THE RAIGNE OF OUR
SOVERAIGNE LORD KING CHARLES THE SECOND.*
An act for a cessation.
|WHEREAS the quantity of tobacco made in this country by encrease of the number of inhabitants imploying themselves wholly to the makeing that comodity, and their continued ffreedome of their unlymitted planting is become soe greate that all marketts have been glutted with itt, and the value of it reduced to so low a rate that the planter is rendred incapable of subsisting, the merchant discouraged in his trade, and consequently by the decay of trade his majesties customes impaired, while the tobacco that formerly releived the planter, encouraged the merchant, and augmented the custome, both now and some yeares past did and doth rest perishing on the planters account, to his utter undoeing; the remedy of which inconveniencies the governour, councell and burgesses of this assembly taking into their serious consideration, have found that the most proper and effectuall course to effect the same wilbe by enacting for one yeare a cessation from planting, In which vacant yeare time wilbe given to the planter to settle himselfe upon the finding out and improvement of some other staple (as wee have already begun in silke, fflax, and potash) the merchant encouraged||Purvis 137 and Edi. 1733 and 1752.|
|* The commencement of the acts of this session taken from the Ch. Cit. and P. Rand. MSS. In the Northumberland MS. it is, 'Att a GRAND ASSEMBLY held att James Citty, 5, 0. Junii 1666; Annoq Regni. Rs Carol. scdi. 16' (but the date of the year is a mistake.)|
|to give a better price when he shalbe assured to have tyme to vend it, and his majesties customes noe way diminished, since the exportation of all the tobacco already made, and likely to be made this next crop, will in all probability (notwithstanding the cessation) equall the quantity of that which hath beene in the like tyme exported; ffor which consideration often message hath beene sent from the assembly of Virginia to the lieutenant generall of Maryland, to establish a stint or totall cessation from planting in both governments who have communicated the same to the assembly of that province, they being equally sensible of their pressures, have enacted a cessation with provisoe of the concurrence of this country of Virginia and Carolina, ffor which causes it is thought fitt to enact, and be it enacted by the governour, councell and burgesses of this present grand assembly and the authority thereof that from and after the ffirst day of ffebruary which shall be in the yeare of our Lord 1666 till the ffirst of ffebruary which shalbe in the yeare of our Lord 1667, noe tobacco shalbe any wayes sowne, sett, planted, or tended, directly or indirectly within the government of Virginia; And for the better and surer execution of this act and obteyning the good ends therein desired, Be it further enacted by the governour, councell and burgesses of this present grand assembly and the authority thereof that the honourable Thomas Ludwell esq. secretary of Virginia, major generall Robert Smith, and major generall Richard Bennett esq. three of his majesties councell for this colony of Virginia, and capt. Robert Wynne Speaker, collonel Nich. Spencer, capt. Daniell Parke, capt. Joseph Bridger, capt. Peter Jennings and Mr. Thomas Ballard, burgesses of this assembly or any five of them be commissioners from the right honourable the governour and assembly (a) of the province of Maryland or the commissioners by the said governour and assembly suffitiently impowred, and likewise with the governour and assembly of Carolina or his and their commissioners suffitiently impowred upon a totall cessation from sowing,||Maryland having agreed to a suspension of the planting of
tobacco, for 1 year, on condition Virginia & Carolina accede to it.|
No tobacco to be planted between the first of Feb. 1666-7 and the first of Feb. 1667-8.
Commis'rs appointed to adjust with the col'nies of Maryland & Carolina, a total suspension of planting tobacco, for one year, and the means of enforcing the act.
|(a) 'Council' in Ch. City MS.|
|setting, planting, or tending tobacco in these three colonies as aforesaid, and of the meanes to see the said cessation put in full and effectuall execution; And be it further enacted by the governour, councell and burgesses of this grand assembly and by the authority thereof that whatsoever the said Thomas Ludwell, major gen. Robert Smith, major generall Richard Bennett, capt. Robert Wynne, coll. Nich. Spencer, capt. Peter Jennings, capt. Daniell Parke, capt. Joseph Bridger and Mr. Thomas Ballard and any five of them shall agree upon the commissioners impowred by the governour of Maryland, and William Drammond (a) esq. governour of Carolina and their respective assemblies tending only to the effectual execution of the cessation from planting tobacco in the yeare aforesaid shall obleige all persons in this colony to observe and performe the same as fully and effectually to all intents and purposes as if the tenour of that agreement had in expresse words beene conteyned and mentioned in the act.|
Their arrangement obligatory.
|An act concerning tenders of tobacco.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
| WHEREAS it hath beene and still is the constant endeavours of this
assembly to give all possible encouragement to merchants and traders into this colony, and hath
hitherto left the receiving or refuseing their debts to their owne discretions, without other
restrictions to them or liberty to the planter than this, that if by the last of January the
creditor did not demand his tobacco, it might then be lawfull for the debtor to dispose of itt
leaveing the debtor still lyable to be sued that yeare for security for his debt; upon which
diverse persons for their private advantage did omitt the demanding of the tobacco in the time,
Cred'r not demand'g his tobac. by last of Jan. the debtor may lay it aside & mark it for his use, being, first viewed & found merchantable, by 2 honest and able men.
|* The running title to the acts of this session in edi. 1733 & 1752 is, 'Anno decimo octavo CAROLI secundi regis.'|
|(a) 'Drummond' in Ch. City MS.|
|thereby rendred the planter incapable of disposeing of his tobacco or cleering himselfe from his engagements; ffor redresse of which in conveniency, Be it enacted by the governour, councell and burgesses of this grand assembly and the authority thereof that if the creditor refuse or omitt to demand or receive his tobacco by the last of January, that then it shalbe lawfull for the defendant at any time betweene that and the twentyeth of ffebruary to addresse himselfe to the two next convenient justices of the peace who are hereby required and impowred to appoint two (a) honest and able men of the neighbourhood on their oathes to view the tobacco and if they find it legally merchantable, whether old or new, then to weigh and marke it for the use of the creditor on whose account the tobacco soe viewed and appointed as aforesaid shall after lye, the debtor still endeavouring to secure it as before the tender. And the defendant (b) upon producing certificate of the said tender from the said justice to the next court, that court shall by their order discharge the debtor from his debt, provided the tender be made in place according to specialty; And it is further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that in case of difference betweene the debtor and creditor or his attorney, if either of them be present, whither the tobacco tendered be merchantable or not, that then two commissioners as aforesaid are hereby impowered to appoint a third person as an indifferent umpire to determine the difference betweene them.||Debtor producing certificate of tender to court,
Difference in opinion, as to quality of the tobacco, decided by an umpires.
|An act for altering the day of the General Court.||Edit. 1733 and 1752.|
|WHEREAS the right honourable the governour and councell for diverse reasons them thereunto moveing having desired that the general court beginning by the present act the twentyeth day of March, henceforth be held the fifteenth day of Aprill; It is enacted||Purvis 138.|
|(a) 'Three' in Purvis. (b) 'Debtor' in Purvis.|
|by this present grand assembly and the authority thereof that the said court be not hereafter held upon the twentyeth day of March, but upon the fifteenth day of Aprill as by this act is provided and confirmed.||Term of gen'l. court altered, from March to April.|
An act for repeale of the act preparatory to a stint.
|WHEREAS the act preparatory for a cessation or stint imposed a rate upon wheate at three shillings or thirty pounds of tobacco per bushell, the governour, councell and burgesses of this assembly considering the low prices tobacco hath beene purchased at, and least the creditor should draw the prices there sett into presedent have thought fitt to enact and doe enact by the authority thereof that the said act be to all intents and purposes repealed and made voyd and null.||Act X. of Oct. 1665, repealed.|
|This assembly was adjourned by act of assembly to the 25th of April 1667; unless the governor found occasion to convene it sooner.|
|Signed by Sir WILLIAM BERKELEY, Govr. |
ROBERT WYNNE, Speaker.
(Note to edit. 1733 & 1752.)
|Pages 180-207||Pages 229-254|