|Pages 434-463||Pages 497-528|
| CHAP. IX.|
An act to amend the act, intituled An act for establishing a high court of chancery.
[Passed the 2d of January, 1788.]
|I. WHEREAS the act, intituled "An act for establishing a high court of chancery," requires amendment, because justice is greatly delayed by the tedious forms of proceedings, suitors are therefore obliged to waste much time and expence, to the impoverishment of themselves and the state, and decrees when obtained are with difficulty carried into execution: For remedying these mischiefs,||Rules of practice in High court of chancery, altered.|
|II. Be it enacted, That from and after the passing of this act, the following rules and alterations, explanations and amendments to the said recited act, shall be observed in all cases in which they apply. Whenever any subpœna in chancery is returned executed, the plaintiff shall within three months thereafter file his bill, and if he fails to do so within that period, the suit shall stand ipso facto dismissed, with costs. If the defendant does not file his answer within three months after the plaintiff shall have filed his bill, having also been served with the subpœna at least three months before the said time for filing his answer, the plaintiff may proceed to take his bill for confessed, and proceed in the same manner as in the case of an attachment returned executed, or he may have a general commission to take depositions, or he may move the court to bring in the defendant to answer interrogatories, at his election, and proceed on to hearing in the two last cases, as if the answer had been filed, and the cause was at issue: Provided, That the court, for good cause shewn, may allow the answer to be filed, and grant a further day for such haring. Whenever a general commission shall issue for taking depositions upon answer and replication, six months from the time of the replication shall be allowed the parties for taking their depositions; and either party, at the expiration of the said six months, may set the same for hearing, nor shall any deposition taken after that time be read as evidence on the hearing, except the same was taken|
|by consent of the parties, by special order of court, or out of the state. After obtaining a final decree for lands, slaves, or money, or things of a similar nature, the clerk of the high court of chancery, shall, upon the request of the party obtaining such decree, issue any writ of execution, either a fieri facias, capias ad satisfaciendum, habere facias possessionem, or any other judicial process which may now issue from the general court, according to the nature of the case, for carrying the said decree into effect; which writs shall issue in the name of the commonwealth, bear teste by the presiding judge for the time being, and be witnessed by the clerk. And all process so to be issued, shall be executed and returned to the clerk's office of high court of chancery, from term to term, on the return days thereof, by the officer or officers to whom the same shall be directed, and shall have the same operation, and possess the same force to all intents and purposes, as similar process issued from the general court. The officer or officers to whom any such process is directed, shall be subject to the like penalties for misconduct or neglect; and the high court of chancery shall exercise in this, and in all cases relating to such process, the same powers as if the said process had issued from the general court, and as that court could have exercised in a similar case. But nothing herein contained shall prohibit any party from proceeding to carry any order or decree of the high court of chancery into execution, in any manner of which he might avail himself before the passing of this act. An execution may be taken out in all cases where costs are recovered in manner above mentioned. The high court of chancery may, at their discretion, direct an issue to be tried whenever they judge it necessary, either in their own court, or in any other court whatsoever, as justice or convenience to the parties may require. After answer filed, and no plea in abatement to the jurisdiction of the court, no exception for want of jurisdiction shall ever afterwards be made, nor shall the high court of chancery, or any other court, ever thereafter delay or refuse justice, or reverse the proceedings for want of jurisdiction, except in cases of controversy respecting lands lying without the jurisdiction of such court, and also of infants and femes covert. Any judge of the high court of chancery may|| Executions on final decrees.|
Saving former remedy.
Executions for costs.
Pleas in abatement.
Qualification of judges.
|qualify and take the appointed oaths of office, either in open court or before the governor and council, and in both cases such qualification shall be recorded in the said court, for which purpose a certificate in the latter case shall be given by the governor of the said qualification. No discontinuance shall take place in any cause, from the non-attendance of a sufficient number of judges to constitute a court, or for the want of a continuing order in any case. The said court shall be considered as standing adjourned from day to day for the first six days of the term, and from thence to the succeeding term, whenever a sufficient number of judged do not attend to constitute a court; and one judge only being present, he may adjourn the court at any time. The said high court of chancery, or any judge out of term-time, shall have power, for good cause shewn, to allow a petition of appeal, and if necessary, order a supersedeas to stop the execution of any decree pronounced by an inferior court, at any time within three years after pronouncing the same; the party praying such appeal and supersedeas, complying with the terms which the said court or judge shall annex to such order. Whenever an appeal is prayed from any inferior court to the said high court of chancery, in any manner whatsoever, it shall be sufficient in either case, if the said bond or bonds shall be executed by good and sufficient securities, although the appellant or party shall not execute the said bond or bonds. Whenever a witness or witnesses shall reside without the state, the said high court of chancery, or any judge thereof, upon an affidavit of the fact, may award a commission or commissions for taking his, her, or their deposition or depositions, to be directed to any persons he or they may think proper; and such deposition or depositions shall be admitted as evidence, if it shall appear that the opposite party had received reasonable notice of the time and place of taking the same. And whereas it hath been doubted, whether the power of the court of chancery to proceed against absent debtors, can be extended to other absent defendants;|| |
Adjournment of court.
Depositions, taken out of the state.
|III. Be it enacted, That in all cases whatever, where a suit is or shall be depending in the court of chancery, concerning any matter or thing whatever||Absent defendants, proceedings against.|
|against any absent defendant or defendants, the court may, on satisfactory proof to them made, that such defendant or defendants is or are out of this commonwealth, or that upon enquiry at his, her, or their usual place of abode, he, she, or they could not be found, make any order similar to that which is directed to be made in case of absent debtors, adapting the same to the nature of the case, a copy of which order shall be published in like manner as is directed in case of absent debtors, and thereupon, if the appearance of such absent defendant or defendants be not entered, the complainant may proceed in like manner as if an appearance had been entered. Provided always, That where such decree shall be made, such absent defendant or defendants may at any time within seven years, be permitted to file his, her, or their answer, and to shew cause why the said decree should be set aside, upon which the court may make such decree as shall appear to be equitable. And whereas the present mode of executing injunction bonds is liable to great abuse,|
|IV. Be it further enacted, That where any injunction shall be granted, the clerk shall indorse on the subpœna, that the effect thereof is to be suspended until the party obtaining the same shall give bond, with sufficient security, in the office of the court in which the judgment to be injoined shall have been obtained. The party obtaining the injunction shall then enter into bond, with sufficient security, and file the same in the clerk's office of that court in which the proceedings at law were had; and the clerk shall indorse on the subpœna that the bond is filed. The rules and regulations in this act contained, shall be also observed in the county courts, so far as they apply.||Injunctions how proceeded on.|
|[Passed the 5th of January, 1788.]|
|I. WHEREAS doubts have arisen in the construction of the act, intituled, "An act for reforming the||Proceedings in county courts reformed.|
|county courts, and for other purposes," and it is thought expedient that the same should be revised and amended; and to prevent the difficulties that often arise from multiplied laws on the same subject, it is necessary that the whole system should be brought into one point of view.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted by the General Assembly, That courts shall be held for each county and corporation on the several court days in the months of March, May, August, and November, for the trial of all presentments and criminal prosecutions, suits at common law and in chancery, where the sum exceeds five pounds or eight hundred pounds of tobacco, depending therein, and continue for the space of six days, unless the business be sooner determined: And if it shall so happen that a sufficient number of justices shall not meet for holding the said court son the first day of the term, or on any subsequent day thereof, it shall and may be lawful for any one justice to adjourn the court from day to day for the space of three days, and provided such adjournment shall not extend beyond the term limited for the duration of the session. The monthly and quarterly courts shall have concurrent jurisdiction in granting and dissolving injunctions in chancery, and in entering up judgments on attachments against absconding debtors where the property attachment shall not be replevied, and except such as are by law finally cognizable before a single justice of the peace, in all petitions for debt, detinue and trove, and in all matters touching the breach of the peace and good behavior, in motions on replevin bonds, and motions against sheriffs and other public officers and defaulters. The respective county courts shall sit in the several months not before specified for the transaction of all business cognizable by the said courts, except such as has been herein assigned to the courts of quarter session. All original process to bring any person or persons to answer in any action or suit, indictment or information in the said courts of quarterly session, and all subsequent process thereon, all process in chancery awarded by the said court, and all other writs of what nature soever, shall be made returnable to the first day of the next succeeding quarterly term, except, subpœnas of injunction attachments, petitions and subpœnas for witnesses which shall be returnable to the next succeeding|| Quarterly courts,|
Concurrent jurisdiction of monthly & quarterly courts.
Process returns of.
|court, be the same monthly or quarterly, as the case may require. Special bail may be taken in court at the quarterly sessions or at the monthly courts; and any justice of the peace when the courts are not sitting may take recognizance of special bail in any action therein depending, which shall be taken de bene esse, and returned by the justice taking the same, to the clerk of the court before the next succeeding quarterly court, to be filed with the papers in such action. And if the plaintiff or his attorney shall except to the sufficiency for the bail so taken by the justice out of court, notice of such intended exception shall be given to the defendant or his attorney at least five days previous to the day at which such exception shall be taken; and if such bail shall be adjudged insufficient by the court, the recognizance thereof shall be discharged, and such proceedings shall be had as if no such bail had been taken. The same proceedings shall be had against the common bail and sheriff in any suit, or either of them, their executors or administrators, and they or either of them may have the same remedy against the defendant or his executors or administrators in the county courts at their quarterly sessions as is directed to be had in any district court in such cases. All imparlances to be taken and pleadings to be filed both in common law and in chancery, until an issue is joined or interlocutory decree or judgment obtained, shall be done at rules to be held monthly in the clerk's office on such days as the courts at their respective quarter sessions shall appoint, which rules shall be distinctly entered in a book to be kept for that purpose, and the clerk shall be allowed the same fees for entering such rules, as if the same had been made in court. And all rules to declare, plead, reply, and for other proceedings, shall be given from month to month, and shall be made and entered with the clerk of the court in the same manner as rules are made and entered with the clerks of the district court in suits depending in them. Provided nevertheless, That the court may at their quarterly sessions next after any of the said rules and proceedings have been made in the clerk's office, for good cause to them shewn, set aside any of the said rules and proceedings, and make such order concerning the same as to them may appear just and right. The clerk shall proportion the causes upon the docket from the first day|| Special bail.|
Rules in clerk's office.
|of the court to the sixth, both inclusive, if in his opinion, so many days will be expended in trying the causes ready for trial, and issue subpœnas for witneses to attend on the days to which the causes stand for trial. He shall docket the causes in order as they are put to issue, and no cause shall be removed from its place on the docket unless where the plaintiff at the calling the same be unprepared for trial, in which case, and no other, shall the cause be put at the end of the docket. When any witness resides out of this commonwealth, and within any other of the United States, or shall be about to depart the same, or by age, sickness or otherwise, shall be unable to attend in person, upon affidavit thereof, the court when sitting, or any justice thereof in vacation, may on request of either party direct a commission to be issued by the clerk of the court to two or more justices of the peace for taking the deposition of such witness, de bene esse, but the party obtaining such commission shall give reasonable notice to the adverse party of the time and place of taking such deposition, otherwise the same shall be void. If any party in any suit at common law or in chancery shall make oath that he verily believes his claim or defence, or a material point thereof, depends on a single witness, the court, or any justice thereof, may direct a commission to issue from the clerk of the court to two or more justices of the peace to take the deposition of such witness, de bene esse, although he or she be not about to depart the commonwealth, nor under any disability, the party in such case giving reasonable notice of the time and place of taking the same to the adverse party. When any witness resides beyond sea or in any foreign country, upon affidavit thereof, the court when sitting may, on request of either party, direct a commission to issue from the clerk's office, directed to such commissioners, not exceeding five, as shall be nominated and agreed upon by the parties litigant, for which purpose, the party applying for a commission in such cases shall give the adverse party, his attorney or agent, ten days previous notice of the day of his intended application to the court, without which no such commission shall issue; and if the adverse party, his attorney or agent, shall not attend for the purpose, in that case the party praying the commission, may nominate the commissioners himself, any three of|| |
Depositions, when & how taken.
|whom in either case may proceed to execute the said commission: Provided nevertheless, That in either case, reasonable notice shall be given to the adverse party of the time and place of taking such deposition, and the costs of giving any such notice as aforesaid, as well as of taking any deposition or depositions in any or either of the United States, or beyond sea, may be taxed by the court against the party who, in their opinion, ought in justice to pay the same. If any person attending before any county court referees or commissioners, appointed to take his or her deposition within this commonwealth, shall refuse to give evidence on oath or affirmation, as the case may be, to the best of his or her knowledge, any person so refusing, shall be committed to prison, either by the court referees or commissioners, there to remain, without bail or mainprise, until he or she shall give such evidence. Notice in writing of motions upon replevin bonds, and against delinquent sheriffs and other officers, if left with the wife or other free person over the age of twenty-one years, other than a negro or mulatto, belonging to the family of such obligor, sheriff, or other officer, ten days before the making such motion, and at his or their usual place of abode, upon affidavit thereof being made, shall be deemed sufficient. The county courts, at their quarterly sessions, shall have similar jurisdiction with the high court of chancery, and shall proceed in the same manner against the estate and effects of persons residing out of this state, or absconding to avoid being served with the process of the said court; and may hear and determine all caveats against grants for lands lying within the jurisdiction of the said courts respectively, except within the counties composing the district of Kentucky. The person entering a caveat against the issuing a grant upon any survey, shall take from the surveyor of the county, or from the register's office, a certified copy of such survey and plat, which, within thirty days from the entering such caveat, he shall deliver to the clerk of the county where the suit is instituted, or such caveat shall be void, and the clerk thereupon shall make due entry thereof in a book kept by him for that purpose, and issue a summons, commanding the defendant to appear on the first day of the next succeeding quarterly courts, to defend his or her right; and on such process being|| Witnesses refusing to testify.|
Notices on motion.
|returned executed, the same proceedings shall be had thereon, as by law are directed in similar cases in the district courts. All writs of execution upon judgments obtained in the quarterly or monthly courts, and all executions and other process to enforce any decree in chancery, obtained in either of the said courts, may be made returnable to the first day of a quarterly or monthly court, provided there be not less than fifteen nor more than ninety days between the texte and return of such execution or process. Where any final judgment shall be entered up in the office against any defendant or defendants, and their securities, or against any defendant or defendants, and sheriff, by default, execution may issue thereon after the next succeeding quarterly court, unless the same be set aside during such court, in like manner as office judgments in the district courts may be set aside; and all office judgments so set aside, shall be immediately put at the end of the issue-docket, and tried the same court in turn with the other issues, unless the plaintiff shall wave his right of trial until the next quarterly term. The right of appeal from the county and corporation courts to the district courts, shall be exercised in the same manner as hath heretofore by law been accustomed from the county to the general court.|| |
Returns of executions.
|III. And be it further enacted, That where any writ of execution or attachment, for not performing a decree in chancery, shall come into the possession of any sheriff, coroner, or serjeant of a corporation, and he shall fail to return the same to the office from whence it issued, on or before the return day thereof, it shall be lawful for the court, upon ten days previous notice being given, upon the motion of the party injured, to fine such sheriff, coroner, or serjeant, at their discretion, in any sum not exceeding five pounds per month, for every hundred pounds contained in the judgment or decree on which the execution or attachment so by him detained has been founded, and so in proportion for every greater or lesser sum. And where the execution or attachment has been founded upon a judgment or decree for the specific performance of an act or thing, in any sum not exceeding fifty pounds, the fines shall be to the use of the party injured, and at his request an execution shall issue therefor, and be indorsed by the clerk, that no security of any kind shall be taken. If|| Sheriffs failing to return executions, fines on.|
Negligence of attornies.
|any suit shall be dismissed for the non-attendance of an attorney practising either in the superior or inferior courts, not having a just and reasonable excuse, it shall be at his costs, and he shall moreover be liable for all damages his client shall sustain by such dismission, or any other neglect of his duty, to be recovered in any court of record in this state. And every attorney receiving money for his client, and refusing to pay the same when demanded, shall be proceeded against in a summary way, on notice, before any court of record, in the same manner that sheriffs are liable to be proceeded against for money received on executions.|| Attornies failing to pay clients their money.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, That after obtaining a final decree for lands, slaves, or money, or things of a specific nature, the clerk of the county court shall, upon the request of the party obtaining such decree, issue any writ of execution, either a fieri facias, capias ad satisfaciendum, habere facias possessionem, or any judicial process which may now issue from such court, according to the nature of the case, for carrying the said decree into effect; which writ shall issue in the name of the commonwealth, and bear teste, and be signed by the clerk of the court: And all process so issued shall be executed and returned to the clerk's office from which the same issued, from term to term, on the return days thereof, by the officer or officers to whom the same shall be directed, and shall have the same operation and possess the same force to all intents and purposes, as similar process issued upon judgments at common law. The officer or officers to whom any such process is directed, shall be subject to the like penalties for misconduct or neglect; and the county court shall exercise in this, and in all cases relating to such process, the same powers as if the said process had issued upon a judgment obtained at common law: But nothing herein contained shall prohibit any party from proceeding to carry any order or decree of the county court in chancery into execution, in any manner in which he might avail himself before the passing of this act. No bail shall be demanded on a writ of capias ad respondendum, which shall be issued against a resident of one county in any other, until a non est inventus has been returned in the county in which the defendant resides, upon a capias issued in the same suit against such defendant; and every writ issued|| Executions on decrees.|
Not to affect former remedy.
|contrary thereto, without an indorsement of "no bail required," shall be voidable at any time before issue joined, or judgment by default, nil dicit; or non sum informatus thereon, but not afterwards: Provided, That no such writ issuing from the county in which the cause of action accrued, shall be voidable by reason of bail being required thereon.|
|V. And be it further enacted, That the court of quarter sessions for the counties of Bourbon, Madison, and Fayette, heretofore held in the months of March and November, and which has been found to interfere with the sessions of the district of Kentucky, shall from and after the first day of May next, be held in the months of February and October, instead of the said months of March and November. And that the courts of quarterly sessions in the counties of Washington, Montgomery, Russel, and Pendleton, shall be held on their respective court days in the months of April, June, September, and November in every year.||Certain court days altered.|
|[Passed the 20th of December, 1787.]|
|I. WHEREAS many judgments have been obtained in behalf of this commonwealth against sheriffs, for taxes due prior to the year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, together with interest and damages thereon and costs; and it is judged expedient that such sheriffs should be exonerated from the payment of a large sum than will reimburse the public;||Arrearages of taxes, prior to 1787, how paid.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted by the General Assembly, That it shall and may be lawful for every sheriff or collector, against whom any judgment hath been or shall|
|be obtained, for taxes due prior to the said year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, to discharge the same by the payment of the principal sum, together with six per centum per annum interest thereon, and costs; any law to the contrary thereof notwithstanding.|
|III. Provided always, That no sheriff or collector shall be entitled to the benefit of this act, unless he shall make payment of one half the amount of such judgment, on or before the first day of April next, and also full payment of the balance on or before the first day of August next. And whereas doubts have arisen under the act, to empower the high sheriffs to proceed in a summary way against their deputies, and for other purposes, whether the executors and administrators of the high sheriff shall be entitled to the remedy provided by the said recited act against the under sheriff of such sheriff;|| Remedy of executors & administrators of high sheriffs against
|IV. Be it further enacted, That in case of the death of any high sheriff, the executors and administrators of such high sheriff shall have the same remedy against the under sheriffs of the said sheriff and their securities, his and their executors and administrators, as is provided in the said recited act in case of the high sheriff.|
An act to amend an act, for establishing a district court on the western waters.
[Passed the 4th of December, 1787.]
|I. WHEREAS all the citizens of this commonwealth are entitled to uniform government, and it is doubtful whether the laws that have passed since the establishment of the supreme court for the district of Kentucky, regulating the proceedings to be had in the high cuort of chancery and the general court, do extend to the said supreme court, in those cases where that court is not particularly named:||Laws regulating high court of chancery and general court, extended to supreme court of Kentucky.|
|II. Be it enacted by the General Assembly, and it is hereby declared, That all laws that have been enacted since the establishment of the said supreme court, and that hereafter may be enacted, relative to the jurisdiction of the high court of chancery and general court of this state, and for regulating judicial proceedings in either of them, do, and shall extend to the said supreme court, in all cases, where for public conveniency it is not in such acts otherwise provided, and the said supreme court expressly excepted.|
|III. And be it further enacted and declared, That the said supreme court has been, and shall be at all times subsequent to the institution thereof, invested with the same powers, and subject to the same regulations within the said district, as by law has been or shall from time to time be exercised by the said high court of chancery and general court in the other parts of the state; and that all conveyances for lands within the said district, and all deeds admitted to record in the said supreme court, on due proof, acknowledgment, or certificate; all licences granted by examiners appointed by the said court, or by the judges thereof, to attorneys, counsellors, or proctors at law for the district, with all and every other proceeding and proceedings in the said supreme court, which are conformably to the proceedings of the said high court of chancery and general court, as the case requires, and that are authorised by law at the time being, are and shall be, and are hereby declared to be good and valid; any seeming ambiguity or contrariety that is in the laws thereto respecting, notwithstanding. and whereas it has been represented to the present general assembly, that the proceeds of the deputy register's office in the district of Kentucky, are become inadequate to the payment of the annual salaries of the judges and attorney-general of the said district, and of consequence the business of the said deputy register much diminished; and as it is reasonable that salaries and services ought to bear a just proportion to each other.|
|IV. Be it further enacted, That from and after the passing of this act, the deputy register of the said district shall receive for his services, the sum of one hundred pounds per annum, and no more.|
|V. And be it further enacted, That if the sum arising from the said deputy register's office should, after the|
|reduction of his salary as aforesaid, prove inadequate to the discharge of the salaries of the said judges and attorney-general, as directed by act of assembly, that then, at the end of each term or quarter, the said judges and attorney-general shall make a settlement with the deputy register for their quarterly salaries, and take a certificate from him of the balance at that time due to them, or each of them respectively; which said balance shall, on presentation of the said certificate, be paid off by the clerk of the said district court, or of any of the county courts within the said district, if so much money be in his or their hands, out of the money arising from the tax on ordinary licences, law process, alienation of lands, or the tax laid by the general assembly of this state, in the year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-six, on his or their annual fees; and all such certificates, with the proper receipts on them, of his or their having actually paid the money as aforesaid, shall be credited to him or them in the settlement of their accounts, in the same manner as if such money had been by them paid into the treasury. And whereas it is further represented to this general assembly, that it is attended with inconvenience and expence to the parties concerned, without producing any benefit to this commonwealth, for the sheriff and other officers belonging to the said supreme court of the district of Kentucky, to apply to the treasury of this commonwealth, for the payment of the salaries or stipends allowed them for their several services;|
|VI. Be it further enacted, That from and after the passing of this act, the said district court, at the end of each term, shall proceed to make an allowance to each of their said officers, according to what they shall adjudge an equivalent to their services respectively, not exceeding the allowance given to the like officers of the general court or high court of chancery aforesaid; which allowance respectively shall be entered by the clerk of the said district court on his minute-book, and an attested copy thereof be by him delivered to each of the said officers respectively; which attested copy or copies may be by such sheriff, or other officer, presented to the clerk of the said district court, or any of the county court clerks within the said district; which clerk or clerks, after paying off the deficiency to the judges aforesaid, if any such deficiency should happen,|
|shall immediately, out of the monies then remaining in his or any of their hands, arising from the taxes aforesaid, pay to such sheriff or officer aforesaid his just demand; which payments also shall be allowed the clerk or clerks in their settlements with the treasury as aforesaid. And as it has also been represented, that many suitors have been prevented from the speedy execution of their business in the said supreme court, on account of the short duration of the terms of the said court.|
|VII. Be it therefore enacted, That the judges may continue to sit twenty-four days (Sundays excluded) in each of the months of June and September.|
|VIII. And be it further enacted, That every other act, clause, or clauses, so far as the same falls within the purview of, or may be deemed contradictory to this act, shall be, and the same is hereby repealed.|
|[Passed December 1, 1787.]|
|I. WHEREAS the cutting of a navigable canal from the waters of Elizabeth river, in this state, to the waters of Pasquotank river in the state of North Carolina, will be of great public utility, and many persons are willing to subscribe large sums of money to effect so beneficial a work, and it is just and proper that they, their heirs and assigns, should be empowered to receive reasonable tolls for ever, in satisfaction for the money advanced by them in carrying the work into execution, and the risk they run; therefore, Be it enacted by the General Assembly, That it shall and may be lawful to open books in the towns of Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Petersburg, Richmond,||Act for cutting a navigable canal, from the waters of Elizabeth river, in Virginia, to the waters of Pasquotank river in N. Carolina.|
|York, Fredericksburg, and Alexandria, under the management of George Kelly in Norfolk; of John Cowper in Portsmouth; of Wells Cowper in Suffolk; of Christopher M'Connico in Petersburg; of James Heron in Richmond; of Thomas Nelson in York; of William Lewis in Fredericksburg, and of William Hartshorne in Alexandria; and under the management of such persons and at such places in North Carolina as shall be appointed by that state for receiving and entering subscriptions to the amount of eighty thousand dollars for the said undertaking, which subscriptions shall be made personally or by power of attorney, and shall be in Spanish milled dollars, but may be paid in other silver or in gold coin of the same value. That the said books shall be opened for receiving subscriptions on the first day of May next, and continue open until the first day of September next inclusive; and on the nineteenth day of the said month of September there shall be a general meeting of the subscribers at Halifax in the state of North Carolina, of which meeting, notice shall be given by the said managers, or any three of them, in the gazettes of both the aforesaid states at least one month next before the said meeting, and such meeting shall and may be continued from day to day until the business is finished. And the acting managers shall, at the time and place aforesaid, lay before such of the subscribers as shall meet according to the said notice the books by them respectively kept, containing the state of the said subscriptions; and if one half the capital sum aforesaid, should on examination appear not to have been subscribed, then the said managers are empowered to take and receive subscriptions to make up the deficiency; and a just and true list of all the subscribers with the sums subscribed by each shall be made out and returned by the said managers, or any four or more of them, under their hands into the general court of this state, and into such court as the state of North Carolina shall direct, to be there recorded. −− And in case more than eighty thousand dollars shall be subscribed, then the same shall be reduced to that sum by the said managers or a majority of them, by beginning at and striking off from the largest subscription or subscriptions under the largest and above one|
|share, until the sum is reduced to the capital aforesaid of eighty thousand dollars, or until a share is taken from all subscriptions above one share; and lots shall be drawn between subscribers of equal sums, to determine the number in which such subscribers shall stand on a list to be made for striking off as aforesaid; and if the sum subscribed still exceeds the capital aforesaid, then they shall strike off by the same rule until the sum subscribed is reduced to the capital aforesaid, or all the subscriptions are reduced to one share; and if, there still be an excess, then lots shall be drawn to determine the subscribes who are to be excluded to reduce the subscriptions to the capital aforesaid, which striking off shall be certified in the list aforesaid, and the said capital sum shall be reckoned and divided into three hundred and twenty shares of two hundred and fifty dollars each, of which every person subscribing may take and subscribe for one or more whole shares, and not otherwise.|
|II. Provided, That unless one half of the said capital shall be subscribed, all subscriptions made in consequence of this act shall be void, and in case one half and less than the whole of the said capital shall be subscribed as aforesaid, then the president and directors are hereby empowered and directed to take and receive the subscriptions which shall be first offered, in whole shares as aforesaid, until the deficiency shall be made up; a certificate of which additional subscriptions shall be made under the hands of the president and directors, or a majority of them for the time being, and returned to, and recorded in the courts as aforesaid.|
|III. And be it enacted, That in case one half of the said capital, or a greater sum shall be subscribed as aforesaid, the said subscribers, and their heirs and assigns, from the time of the said first meeting, shall be and are hereby declared to be incorporated into a company by the name of the Dismal swamp Canal "Company, and may sue and be sued as such; and such of the said subscribers as shall be present at the said meeting, or a majority of them are hereby empowered and required to elect a president and four directors for conducting the said undertaking and managing all the said companies business and concerns, for and during such time not exceeding three years, as the said subscribers or a majority of them shall think fit; and in|
|counting the votes of all general meetings of the said company, each member shall be allowed one vote for every share as far as ten shares, and one vote for every five shares above ten by him or her held at the time in the said company; and any proprietor by writing under his or her hand executed before two witnesses, may depute any other member or proprietor to vote and act as proxy for him or her at any general meeting.|
|IV. And be it enacted, That the said president and directors so elected, and their successors, or a majority of them assembled, shall have power and authority to agree with any person or persons on behalf of the said company, to cut the said canal and to erect such locks and perform such other works as they shall judge necessary for the navigation of the said canal, and carrying on the same from place to place, and from time to time, and upon such terms, and in such manner as they shall think fit, and out of the money arising from the subscriptions and tolls and other aids thereafter in this act given to pay for the same and to repair and keep in order the said canal, locks, and other works necessary thereto, and to defray all incidental charges, and also to appoint a treasurer, clerk, and such other officers, toll gatherers, managers, and servants, as they shall judge requisite, and to agree for and settle their respective wages or allowances, and settle, pass and sign their accounts, and also to make and establish rules of proceeding and transact all the other business and concerns of the said company in and during the intervals between the general meetings of the same; and they shall be allowed as a satisfaction for their trouble therein, such sums of money as shall by a general meeting of the subscribes be determined.|
|V. Provided always, That the treasurer shall give bond in such penalty and with such security, as the said president and directors or a majority of them shall direct for the true and faithful discharge of the trust reposed in him, and that the allowance to be made to him for his services shall not exceed three pounds in the hundred for the disbursements by him made, and that no officer in the said company shall have a vote in the settlement or passing of his own account. And be it enacted, that the said president and directors, and their successors, or a majority of them, shall have full power and authority from time to time, as money|
|shall be wanting, to make and sign orders from that purpose, and direct at what time, and in what proportion the proprietors shall advance and pay off the sums subscribed, which orders shall be advertised at least one month in the North Carolina and Virginia gazettes; and they are hereby authorized and empowered to demand and receive of the several proprietors from time to time, the sums of money so ordered to be advanced for carrying on and executing, or repairing and keeping in order the said works, until the sums subscribed shall be fully paid; and to order the said sums to be deposited in the hands of the treasurer, to be by him disbursed and laid out, as the said president and directors, or a majority of them shall order and direct; and if any of the said proprietors shall refuse or neglect to pay their said proprietors shall refuse or neglect to pay their said proportions within one month after the same so ordered and advertised as aforesaid, the said president and directors, or a majority of them, may sell at auction and convey to the purchaser, the share or shares of such proprietor so refusing or neglecting payment, giving at least one months notice of the sale in the North Carolina and Virginia gazettes; and after retaining the sum due and charges of sale out of the money produced thereby, they shall refund and pay the overplus, if any, to the former owner; and if such sale shall not produce the full sum ordered and directed to be advanced as aforesaid with the incidental charges, the said president and directors, or a majority of them, may, in the name of the company, sue for and recover the balance by motion on ten days previous notice; and the said purchaser or purchasers shall be subject to the same rules and regulations, as if the said sale and conveyance had been made by the original proprietor.|
|VI. And to continue the succession of the said president and directors and to keep up the same number, Be it enacted, That from time to time, on the expiration of the term for which the said president and directors were appointed, the proprietors of the said company at the next general meeting shall either continue the said president and directors or any of them, or shall choose others in their stead; and in case of the death, removal, resignation or incapacity of the president or any of the directors, may and shall in manner aforesaid elect any other person or persons to|
|be president and directors in the room of him or them so dying, removing, resigning or becoming incapable of acting, and may at any of their general meetings remove the president or any of the directors and appoint others for and during the remainder of the term for which such person or persons were at first to have acted.|
|VII. And be it enacted, That every president and director, before he acts as such, shall take an oath or affirmation for the due execution of his office.|
|VIII. And be it enacted, That the presence of proprietors having one hundred and eighty shares at least, shall be necessary to constitute a general meeting and that there be a general meeting of proprietors on the first Monday in September in every year, at such convenient town, as shall from time to time be appointed by the said general meeting; but if a sufficient number should not attend on that day, the proprietors who do attend may adjourn such meeting from day to day, till a general meeting of proprietors shall be had, which may be continued from day to day until the business of the company is finished, to which meeting the president and directors shall make report, and render distinct and just accounts of all their proceedings, and on finding them fairly and justly stated, the proprietors then present or a majority of them shall give a certificate thereof, a duplicate of which shall be entered on the said companies books; and at such yearly general meetings, after leaving in the hands of the treasurer such sum as the proprietors or a majority of them shall judge necessary for repairs and contingent charges. An equal dividend to all the nett profits arising from the tolls hereby granted shall be ordered and made to the proprietors of the said company in proportion to their several shares; and on any emergency in the interval between the said yearly meetings, the president or a majority of the directors may appoint a general meeting of the proprietors of the company at any convenient town, giving at least one months previous notice in the North Carolina and Virginia Gazettes, which meeting may be adjourned and continued as aforesaid.|
|IX. And be it further enacted, That for and in consideration of the expences the said proprietors will be at, not only in cutting the said canal, erecting locks,|
|making causeways and performing other works necessary for this navigation, but in maintaining and keeping the same in repair, the said canal, locks, causeways, and other works, with all their profits, shall be and the same are hereby vested in the said proprietors, their heirs and assigns for ever, as tenants in common in proportion to their respective shares, and the same shall be deemed real estate, and be forever exempt from the payment of any tax imposition or assessment whatsoever, and it shall and may be lawful for the said president and directors at all times for ever hereafter to demand and receive at some convenient place near one of the extremities of the canal, for all commodities transported through it or over the causeways, tolls, according to the following table and rates which shall be in Spanish milled dollars, to wit:|
|X. All produce, goods, wares, or merchandize, passing the causeways shall be subject to the same toll, as goods passing through the canal; but which tolls though chargeable in Spanish milled dollars may be paid in other silver or in gold coin of the same value. And in case of refusal to pay the tolls at the time of offering to pass the place aforesaid, and previous to passing the same, the collector of the said tolls may lawfully refuse passage to whatever refuses payment, and if any vessel, waggon, or cart, shall pass without paying the toll, then the said collector may seize such vessel, waggon, or cart, wherever found and sell the same at auction for ready money, which, so far as is necessary, shall be applied towards paying the said toll, and all expences of seizure and sale, and the balance, if any, shall be paid to the owner, and the person having the direction of such vessel, waggon, or cart, shall be liable for such toll, if the same is not paid by the sale as aforesaid. Provided, That the said proprietors or a majority of them holding at least one hundred and eighty shares, shall have full power and authority, at any general meeting, to lessen the said tolls or any of them, or to determine that any article may pass free of toll.|
|XI. And be it enacted, That the said canal and works to be erected thereon in virtue of this act, and the causeways when completed, shall forever thereafter be esteemed and taken as public highways, free for the transportation of all goods, wares, commodities, or produce whatsoever; and for travelling on payment of the tolls imposed by this act, and no other toll or tax whatever for the use of the water of the said canal and the works thereon erected, or the causeways, shall at any time hereafter be imposed by both or either of the said states, subject nevertheless to such regulations as the legislatures of the said states may concur in, to prevent the importation of prohibited goods, or to prevent fraud in evading the payment of duties imposed in both or either of the said states on goods imported into either of them.|
|XII. And whereas it is necessary for the making of the said canal, locks, causeways, and other works, that|
|a provision should be made for condemning a quantity of land for the purpose,|
|XIII. Be it enacted, That it shall and may be lawful for the said president and directors, or a majority of them to agree with thee owners of any land, through which the said canal is intended to pass, for the purchase thereof, and in case of disagreement, or in case the owner thereof shall be a feme covert, under age, non-compos, or out of the state; on application to any two justices of the county in which such land shall lie, the said justices shall issue their warrant under their hands to the sheriff of their county to summon a jury of eighteen inhabitants of his county of property and reputation, not related to the parties nor in any manner interested, to meet on the land to be valued at a day to be expressed in the warrant, not less than ten nor more than twenty days thereafter, and the sheriff, on receiving the said warrant shall forthwith summon the said jury, and when met, provided that not less than twelve do appear, shall administer an oath or affirmation to every juryman that shall appear, "That he will fairly, justly, and impartially value the land (not exceeding the width of three hundred feet) and all damages the owner thereof shall sustain by cutting the canal through such land, according to the best of his skill and judgment, and that in such valuation he will not spare any person through favour or affection, nor any person grieve through malice, hatred or ill will." And the inquisition thereon taken shall be signed by the sheriff and some twelve or more of the jury, and returned by the sheriff to the clerk of his county, to be by him recorded, and on every such valuation the jury is hereby directed to describe and ascertain the bounds of the land by them valued, and their valuation shall be conclusive on all persons, and shall be paid by the said president and directors to the owner of the land or his legal representatives, and on payment thereof the said company shall be seized in fee of such land as if conveyed by the owner to them and their successors by legal conveyance.|
|XIV. Provided nevertheless, That if any farther damage shall arise to any proprietor of land in consequence of opening such canal or in erecting such works, than had been before considered and valued, it shall and may be lawful for such proprietor as often as|
|any such new damage shall happen, by application to and a warrant from any two justices of the county where the lands lie, to have such farther damage valued by a jury in like manner and to receive and recover the same of the said president and directors. But nothing herein shall be taken or construed to entitle the proprietor of any such land to recover compensation for any damages which may happen to any mills, or other works, or improvements which shall be begun or erected by such proprietor after such first valuation, by the said president and directors, or some person by their authority.|
|XV. And be it enacted, That the said president and directors or a majority of them are hereby authorized to agree with the proprietor or proprietors for the purchase of a quantity of land not exceeding one acre, at or near the place of the receipt of tolls aforesaid for the purpose of erecting necessary buildings, and in case of disagreement or any of the disabilities aforesaid, or the proprietor being out of the state, then such land may be valued, condemned, and paid for as aforesaid, and the said company shall on payment of the valuation of the said land be seised thereof in fee-simple as aforesaid.|
|XVI. And whereas it is represented that the waters of the lake in the Dismal Swamp commonly called Drummond's Pond, may be useful for a supply of water to the said canal.|
|XVII. Be it enacted, That the said lake, so far as the waters thereof shall be necessary for the purpose aforesaid, shall be and is hereby vested in the proprietors of the said canal, and it shall and may be lawful for the said president and directors or a majority of them, to open, if they shall find it expedient, a cross canal from the lake to the principal canal for the purpose of drawing from thence a supply of water, and for executing this work and keeping it in repair, they shall have the same powers which they are authorized to exercise in opening the principal canal. And it shall not be lawful for any person whatsoever so to cut off or divert the courses of those waters, which now flow from the westward into the said lake as to prevent their continuing to fall into it.|
|XVIII. And whereas some of the places through which it may be necessary to conduct the said canals may be convenient for erecting mills and other water works, and the persons possessors of such situations may design to improve the same, and it is not the intention of this act to interfere with private property but for the purpose of improving and perfecting the said navigation.|
|XIX. Be it enacted, That the water or any part thereof conveyed through the said canals shall not be used for any purpose but navigation, unless there shall be sufficient to answer both the purposes of navigation and water works aforesaid, in what case the said president and directors, or a majority of them, are hereby empowered and directed to enter into reasonable agreements with the proprietors of such situations concerning the just proportion of the expences of making the canals capable of carrying such quantities of water as may be sufficient for the purposes of navigation and also for any such water works as aforesaid.|
|XX. And whereas the said canals may be of great utility in affording the means of draining the sunken lands through which they pass.|
|XXI. Be it enacted, That it shall and may be lawful for the proprietors of the said adjacent sunken lands to open cross ditches into the said canals, provided, that these cross ditches shall not be within less than one mile of one another on the same side of the canals, and be covered where they pass through the causeways with good bridges of the breadth of the causeways at the expence of the persons cutting them; and also be so constructed that he water may be entirely prevented passing through them into the canals at any time, when this shall be necessary And the works occasioned by these cross ditches, except the bridges, shall be kept in repair at the expence of their proprietors.|
|XXII. And be it enacted, That it shall and may be lawful for every of the said proprietors to transfer his share or shares by deed executed before two witnesses, and registered after proof of the execution thereof in the said company's books and not otherwise, except by devise, which devise shall also be exhibited to the president and directors, and registered in the company's|
|books before the devisee or devisees shall be entitled to draw any part of the profits from the said tolls. −− Provided, That no transfer whatsoever shall be made, except for one or more whole share or shares, and not for part of such shares, and that no share shall, at any time, be sold, conveyed, transferred, or held in trust for the use and benefit, or in the name of another, whereby the said president and directors, or proprietors of the said company or any of them shall or may be challenged or made to answer concerning any such trust, but that every such person appearing as aforesaid to be a proprietor, shall, as to the others of the said company be to every intent taken absolutely as such, but between any trustee and the person for whose benefit any trust shall be created the common remedy may be pursued.|
|XXIII. And whereas it hath been represented, that sundry persons are willing and desirous on account of the public advantage, and also the improvement their estates may receive thereby, to promote and contribute towards so useful an undertaking and to subscribe sums of money to be paid on condition the said works are completed and carried into execution, but do not care to run any risque, or desire to have any property therein:|
|XXIV. Be it therefore enacted, That the said president and directors shall be, and are hereby empowered to receive and take in subscriptions on the said conditions, and on the said works being completed and carried into execution according to the true intent and meaning of this act, that it shall and may be lawful for the said president and directors, or a majority of them, in case of refusal or neglect of payment, in the name of the company as aforesaid, to sue for and recover of the said subscribers, their heirs, executors, or administrators, the sums by them respectively subscribed, by action of debt, or on the case in any court of record within this state.|
|XXV. And be it enacted, That if the said capital and the other aids already granted by this act shall prove insufficient, it shall and may be lawful for the said company from time to time to increase the said capital by the addition of so many more whole shares, as shall be judged necessary by the said proprietors or a majority of them holding at least one hundred and|
|eighty shares present at any general meeting of the said company. And the said president and directors, or a majority of them, are hereby empowered and required after giving at least one month's notice thereof in the North carolina and Virginia gazettes, to open books at the before mentioned places for receiving and entering such additional subscriptions, in which the proprietors of the said company for the time being shall and are hereby declared to have the preference of all others for the first thirty days after the said books shall be opened as aforesaid, of taking and subscribing for so many whole shares as any of them shall choose. And the said president and directors are hereby required to observe in all other respects the same rules therein as are by this act prescribed for receiving and adjusting the first subscriptions, and in like manner to return under the hands of any three or more of them an exact list of such additional subscribers with the sums by them respectively subscribed into the courts as aforesaid, to be there recorded. And all proprietors of such additional sums shall and are hereby declared to be from thence forward incorporated into the said company.|
|XXVI. And it is hereby declared and enacted, That the tolls herein before allowed to be demanded and received, are granted and shall be paid on condition only, that the said Dismal Swamp Canal Company shall make the canal thirty two feet wide, and eight feet in depth below the surface of the earth, and capable of being navigated in dry seasons by vessels drawing three feet water, from Deep Creek near Tucker's mill in Virginia to the highest good navigation for vessels of the aforesaid draft in Pasquotank river in North Carolina, with sufficient locks each of ninety feet in length and thirty two feet in breadth, and capable of conveying vessels drawing four feet water at the least, and that each of the causeways shall be twenty feet in breadth.|
|XXVII. And it is hereby enacted and provided, That in case the said company shall not begin the said work within one year after the company shall be formed, or if the said company shall not complete the navigation and works as aforesaid within ten years after the said company shall be formed, then shall all interest of the said company and all preference in their favour, as to|
|the navigation and tolls of the said canals and causeways, be forfeited and cease.|
|XVIII. And whereas at a meeting of commissioners appointed by the states of North Carolina and Virginia to agree on the form of an act for cutting the said canal, and for regulating the commerce which may be carried on through it between the citizens of the two states, to wit: Archibald Maclaine, William M'Kenzie, James Galloway, and John Stokes, esquires, on the part of North Carolina, and Robert Andrews and John Cowper, esquires, on the part of Virginia, at Fayette-Ville, in the state of North Carolina, on the twelfth day of December in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty six, the following compact was mutually agreed to by the said commissioners: First. The state of Virginia agrees that the waters of Elizabeth river from the said canal to the mouth thereof, the waters of Hampton road and of Chesapeake bay to the capes, and also Roanoke river wherever it is in Virginia, shall be forever considered as a common highway free for the use and navigation of all vessels belonging to the state of North Carolina or any of its citizens, and that they shall not be therein subject to the payment of any toll or charge whatever, imposed for the purpose of raising a revenue. Secondly. The state of Virginia agrees that no restriction, duty, or impost, shall be laid on any commodity, which is the growth, produce, or manufacture, of the state of North carolina, brought through the said canal or over the said causeways for sale or exportation, and that the same may be exported without reinspection. Thirdly. The state of Virginia agrees that when any imported goods shall within five months after entry be exported through the said canal or over the said cause-ways into the state of North Carolina in packages, bales, or casks, as imported, the duties thereof shall be remitted or repaid as the case may be to the exporter, on his producing within six months after the aforesaid entry the certificate of the naval officer of the district of North Carolina, into which the said canal enters, that the said goods have been entered there. Fourthly. The state of North Carolina agrees that the waters of Roanoke river, Meherrin, Nottaway, Chowan, Albemarle Sound, as low as the mouth of Pasquotank river, and of Pasquotank,|
|from the mouth thereof to the said canal shall be forever considered as a common highway free for the use and navigation of all vessels belonging to the state of Virginia or any of its citizens, and that they shall not be subject therein to the payment of any toll or charge whatever imposed for the purpose of raising a revenue. Fifthly. The state of North Carolina agrees that no restriction, duty or impost shall be laid on any commodity which is the grown, produce, or manufacture, of the state of Virginia, passing through the aforesaid waters to the said canal, or brought through the said canal or over the said causeways for sale or exportation, and that the same may be sold or exported without reinspection. In those articles where it is expressed that no duty or impost is to be laid for the purpose of raising revenue it is not to be understood that the imposition of tolls for the purpose of improving the navigation of the said waters is prevented. Sixthly. The state of North Carolina agrees that when any imported goods shall within five months after entry be exported through the said canal or over the said causeways into the state of Virginia, in packages, bales, or casks, as imported, the duties thereof shall be remitted or repaid as the case may be to the exporter on his producing within six months after the aforesaid entry the certificate of the naval officer of Norfolk, that the said goods have been entered there. Seventhly. Imported goods passing from one part of either of the said two states to another part of the same, through any of the waters of the other state, shall not be subject to any duty imposed for the purpose of raising a revenue. Lastly. The citizens of each of the said two states may have the use of the inspections of the other, for the purpose of reinspecting any damaged commodities, which have passed through the said canal, on paying the price of the labour of reinspection and no more.|
|XXIX. And whereas this general assembly are of opinion that the said compact is made on just and mutual principles for the true interest of both governments.|
|XXX. Be it therefore enacted, That the said compact is hereby approved, confirmed and ratified, by the general assembly of the state of Virginia, and that every article, clause, matter, and thing, therein contained, shall be obligatory on this state and the citizens thereof,|
|and shall be forever faithfully and inviolably observed and kept by this government and all its citizens, according to the true intent and meaning of the said compact, and the faith and honour of this state are hereby solemnly pledged and engaged to the general assembly of the state of North Carolina and the government and citizens thereof, that this law shall never be repealed or altered by the legislature of this state, without the consent of the state of North Carolina. Every act or part of an act of assembly which come within the purview and meaning of this act, shall be, and the same is hereby repealed. This act shall commence and be in force from and after the passing of a like act by the general assembly of North Carolina.|
|[Passed December 20, 1787.]|
|I. WHEREAS the tax imposed on seamen hath produced a fund sufficient for the purpose of erecting a hospital for the reception of aged, sick, and disabled seamen, and it is just and proper that the same should be applied to the laudable purpose for which it was originally intended.||Marine hospital established.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted by the General Assembly, That the governor with the advice of council, shall, and he is hereby authorised to appoint seven commissioners for the purpose of erecting a hospital for the reception of aged, sick, and disabled seamen at Washington in the county of Norfolk. In case of the death, resignation, or refusal to act of any of the said commissioners, the governor with advice of council shall supply such vacancy. The commissioners so to be appointed are hereby empowered to purchase a piece or parcel of land in the said town of Washington, and to contract|
|for the building thereon a commodious house or houses fit for the reception and accommodation of such aged sick, and disabled seamen as they may from time to time think proper to admit into the same; to provide a surgeon, keeper and matron to the said hospital, with necessary nurses for the assistance and relief of such poor seamen, and to provide all necessaries for their comfortable support and maintenance, and in general from time to time to make and ordain all such rules, orders, and regulations for the better establishing and governing such hospital as to them shall seem necessary. The said commissioners shall, so soon as they have purchased the land, and contracted for the building of the necessary houses thereon, lay before the executive a clear statement of their proceedings, and an estimate of the expence attending the same, who shall thereupon direct the auditor of public accounts to grant a warrant upon the treasurer to the said commissioners for such sum or sums of money as shall be necessary for the completion of the same, which warrant shall be paid by the treasurer out of the marine fund. The said commissioners shall also once in every three months lay before the executive an account of all the expences incurred in the support of the said hospital, and the same being examined and approved, the governor with the advice of council, shall direct the auditor of public accounts to grant a warrant in the manner before directed, which shall be paid by the treasurer out of the same fund. The commissioners shall continue in office during good behaviour, to be judged of by the executive, and in case any one of them shall be removed, the executive shall supply the vacancy occasioned thereby.|
An act directing the sale of certain public lands.
[Passed January 2, 1788.]
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That the public lands lying in the counties of James City||Public lands in James city, and Northampton,|
|and Northampton, formerly annexed to the office of secretary, shall be, and they are hereby vested in Nathaniel Burwell, Samuel Beall, Dudley Digges, Joseph Hornsby, John Pierce, John Stringer, Littleton Savage, Peter Bowdoin, Edmund Custis, and John Cropper, gentlemen, commissioners, who, or any three of them are hereby authorized and required to make sale of the same in the manner and on the terms hereafter prescribed. Previous notice shall be given of the sale at least sixty days in the Virginia Gazette, and the commissioners shall dispose of the lands by public auction, on the premises, to the highest bidder on the day appointed, if fair, if not, the next fair day, for specie or any of the public securities of this state bearing an interest of six per cent. the commissioners previously agreeing among themselves, and publishing to the bidders at what rate the securities will be received in lieu of specie. The purchasers under this act shall have six months credit for one third of the purchase, twelve months credit for another third, and eighteen months credit for the remaining one third, upon giving bond and security payable to the governor and his successors for the use of the commonwealth: but if the specie or public securities, as the case may be, shall not be paid at the time they become due the commissioners or any one of them may and shall move for a judgment against the purchaser or purchasers, in the court of the county where he or they reside, given ten days notice of such motion.||formerly annexed to office of secretary, to be held.|
|II. And whereas the year may be considerably advanced before the sale of the lands aforesaid can be effected, Be it further enacted, That the commissioners may if to them it shall appear for the public benefit, rent the same for the year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-eight, and give the purchaser or purchasers possession the first day of January one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine. The commissioners shall after receiving the full amount of the sales aforesaid execute in behalf of the public, conveyances in fee to the purchasers, and pay the specie and public securities arising from the rents and sales into the public treasury; there to be appropriated and applied in aid of the sinking fund, after deducting two per cent. from the amount to the rents and sales for their trouble, or such of them as may execute the same.|
|Pages 434-463||Pages 497-528|