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Francis Newton Thorpe, The Federal and State Constitutions, Vol. IV Michigan-New Hampshire [1909]

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Francis Newton Thorpe, The Federal and State Constitutions, Colonial Charters, and other Organic Laws of the States and Territories now or heretofore forming the United States of America, compiled and edited by Francis Newton Thorpe (Washington: Government Printing Office, 1909). Vol. IV Michigan-New Hampshire. http://oll.libertyfund.org/titles/2677

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About this Title:

Thorpe was commissioned by the U.S. Congress to edit a 7 volume collection of Colonial, Federal and State constitutions in 1906. The volumes are in alphabetical order, with Volume 4 dealing with Michigan through New Hampshire.

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THE FEDERAL AND STATE CONSTITUTIONS COLONIAL CHARTERS, AND OTHER ORGANIC LAWS OF THE STATES, TERRITORIES, AND COLONIES NOW OR HERETOFORE FORMING THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
59th Congress 2d Session HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Document No. 357
Compiled and Edited under the Act of Congress of June 30, 1906 By FRANCIS NEWTON THORPE, Ph. D., LL. D.

Member of the Pennsylvania Bar; Fellow and Professor of American Constitutional History at the University of Pennsylvania, 1885-1898; Member of the American Historical Association; Author of The Constitutional History of the United States, 1765-1895; A (State) Constitutional History of the American People, 1776-1850; A Short Constitutional History of the United States; A (Social and Economic) History of the American People; A History of the Civil War; Editor of the History of North America, Volumes IX, XV, XVI, XVIII, XIX, XX; Author of The Government of the People of the United States; Benjamin Franklin and the University of Pennsylvania; The Life of William Pepper, etc.

VOL. IV
Michigan—New Hampshire
WASHINGTON
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
1909
Edition: current; Page: [iii] Edition: current; Page: [1925]

The Federal and State Constitutions
Colonial Charters, and other Organic Laws of the States, Territories, and Colonies, Volume IV

Organic Laws State, Territorial, and Colonial

MICHIGANa

For organic acts relating to the land now included within Michigan printed in other parts of this work see:

Virginia Act of Cession, 1783 (Illinois, p. 955).
Deed of Cession from Virginia, 1784 (Illinois, p. 957).
Northwest Territorial Government, 1787 (Illinois, p. 957).
Virginia Act of Ratification, 1788 (Illinois, p. 963).
Northwest Territorial Government, 1789 (Illinois, p. 963).
Territorial Government of Indiana, 1800 (Illinois, p. 964).
Extension of Michigan Territory, 1834 (Iowa, p. 1111).
Enabling Act for Illinois, 1818 (Illinois, p. 967).

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MICHIGAN—1805b

[Eighth Congress, Second Session]

An Act to divide the Indiana Territory into two separate governments

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That from and after the thirtieth day of June next, all that part of the Indiana Territory which lies north of a line drawn east from the southerly bend, or extreme, of Lake Michigan, until it shall intersect Lake Erie, and east of a line drawn from the said southerly bend through the middle of said lake to its northern extremity, and thence due north to the northern boundary of the United States, shall, for the purpose of temporary government, constitute a separate Territory, and be called Michigan.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That there shall be established within the said Territory a government in all respects similar to that provided by the ordinance of Congress, passed on the thirteenth day of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, for the government of the territory northwest of the river Ohio; and by an act passed on the seventh day of August, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine, entitled “An act to provide for the government of the territory northwest of the river Ohio;” and the inhabitants thereof shall be entitled to and enjoy all and singular the rights, privileges, and advantages granted and secured to the people of the Edition: current; Page: [1926] territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio by the said ordinance.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the officers for the said Territory, who, by virtue of this act shall be appointed by the President of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall respectively exercise the same powers, perform the same duties, and receive for their services the same compensations as by the ordinance aforesaid, and the laws of the United States, have been provided and established for similar officers in the Indiana Territory; and the duties and emoluments of superintendent of Indian Affairs shall be united with those of governor.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That nothing in this act contained shall be construed so as in any manner to affect the government now in force in the Indiana Territory, further than to prohibit the exercise thereof within the said Territory of Michigan, from and after the aforesaid thirtieth day of June next.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That all suits, process, and proceeding which, on the thirtieth day of June next, shall be pending in the court of any county which shall be included within the said Territory of Michigan, and also all suits, process, and proceedings which, on the said thirtieth day of June next, shall be pending in the general court of the Indiana Territory in consequence of any writ of removal, or order for trial at bar, and which had been removed from any of the counties included within the limits of the Territory of Michigan aforesaid, shall, in all things concerning the same, be proceeded on, and judgments and decrees rendered thereon, in the same manner as if the said Indiana Territory had remained undivided.

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That Detroit shall be the seat of government of the said Territory until Congress shall otherwise direct.

ENABLING ACT FOR MICHIGAN—1836a

[Twenty-fourth Congress, First Session]

An Act to establish the northern boundary-line of the State of Ohio, and to provide for the admission of the State of Michigan into the Union upon the conditions therein expressed.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the northern Edition: current; Page: [1927] boundary-line of the State of Ohio shall be established at, and shall be a direct line drawn from the southern extremity of Lake Michigan to the most northerly cape of the Maumee (Miami) Bay, after that line, so drawn, shall intersect the eastern boundary-line of the State of Indiana; and from the said north cape of the said bay, northeast to the boundary-line between the United States and the province of Upper Canada, in Lake Erie; and thence with the said last-mentioned line, to its intersection with the western line of the State of Pennsylvania.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the constitution and State government which the people of Michigan have formed for themselves be, and the same is hereby, accepted, ratified, and confirmed; and that the said State of Michigan shall be, and is hereby, declared to be one of the United States of America, and is hereby admitted into the Union upon an equal footing with the original States, in all respects whatsoever: Provided always, and this admission is upon the express condition, That the said State shall consist of and have jurisdiction over all the territory included within the following boundaries, and over none other, to wit: Beginning at the point where the above-described northern boundary of the State of Ohio intersects the eastern boundary of the State of Indiana, and running thence with the said boundary-line of Ohio, as described in the first section of this act, until it intersects the boundary-line between the United States and Canada, in Lake Erie; thence with the said boundary-line between the United States and Canada, through the Detroit River, Lake Huron, and Lake Superior, to a point where the said line last touches Lake Superior; thence, in a direct line through Lake Superior, to the mouth of the Montreal River; thence, through the middle of the main channel of the said river Montreal, to the middle of the Lake of the Desert; thence, in a direct line, to the nearest headwater of the Menomonee River; thence, through the middle of that fork of the said river first touched by the said line, to the main channel of the said Menomonee River; thence, down the centre of the main channel of the same, to the centre of the most usual ship-channel of the Green Bay of Lake Michigan; thence, through the centre of the most usual ship-channel of the said bay, to the middle of Lake Michigan; thence, through the middle of Lake Michigan, to the northern boundary of the State of Indiana, as that line was established by the act of Congress of the nineteenth of April, eighteen hundred and sixteen; thence due east with the north boundary-line of the said State of Indiana to the northeast corner thereof; and thence south, with the east boundary-line of Indiana, to the place of beginning.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That as a compliance with the fundamental condition of admission contained in the last preceding section of this act, the boundaries of the said State of Michigan, as in that section described, declared, and established, shall receive the assent of a convention of delegates elected by the people of said State for the sole purpose of giving the assent herein required; and, as soon as the assent herein required shall be given, the President of the United States shall announce the same by proclamation; and, thereupon, and without any further proceeding on the part of Congress, the admission of the said State into the Union, as one of the United States of America, on an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatever, shall be considered as complete, and the Senators and Representatives Edition: current; Page: [1928] who have been elected by the said State as its representatives in the Congress of the United States shall be entitled to take their seats in the Senate and House of Representatives, respectively, without further delay.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That nothing in this act contained, or in the admission of the said State into the Union as one of the United States of America, upon an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatever, shall be so construed or understood as to confer upon the people, legislature, or other authorities of the said State of Michigan any authority or right to interfere with the sale by the United States, and under their authority, of the vacant and unsold lands within the limits of the said State; but that the subject of the public lands, and the interests which may be given to the said State therein, shall be regulated by future action between Congress, on the part of the United States, and the said State, or the authorities thereof. And the said State of Michigan shall in no case, and under no pretence whatsoever, impose any tax, assessment, or imposition of any description upon any of the lands of the United States within its limits.

SUPPLEMENTARY ACT FOR THE ADMISSION OF MICHIGAN—1836

An Act supplementary to the act entitled “An act to establish the northern boundary line of the State of Ohio, and to provide for the admission of the State of Michigan into the Union on certain conditions.”

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That in lieu of the propositions submitted to the Congress of the United States by an ordinance passed by the convention of delegates at Detroit, assembled for the purpose of making a constitution for the State of Michigan, which are hereby rejected; and that the following propositions be, and the same are hereby offered to the Legislature of the State of Michigan, for their acceptance or rejection, which if accepted, under the authority conferred on the said Legislature by the Convention which framed the constitution of the said State, shall be obligatory upon the United States.

First. That section numbered sixteen in every township of the public lands, and where such section has been sold or otherwise disposed of, other lands equivalent thereto, and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to the State for the use of schools.

Second. That the seventy-two sections of land set apart and reserved for the use and support of a university by an act of Congress approved on the twentieth day of May, eighteen hundred and twenty-six, entitled “An act concerning a seminary of learning in the Territory of Michigan,” are hereby granted and conveyed to the State, to be appropriated solely to the use and support of such university, in such manner as the Legislature may prescribe; And provided also, That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to impair or affect in any way the rights of any person or persons claiming any of said seventy-two sections of lands, under contract or grant from said university.

Edition: current; Page: [1929]

Third. That five entire sections of land, to be selected and located under the direction of the Legislature, in legal divisions of not less than one quarter section, from any of the unappropriated lands belonging to the United States within the said State, are hereby granted to the State for the purpose of completing the public buildings of the said State, or for the erection of public buildings at the seat of Government of the said State, as the Legislature may determine and direct.

Fourth. That all salt springs within the State, not exceeding twelve in number, with six sections of land adjoining, or as contiguous as may be to each, shall be granted to the said State for its use, the same to be selected by the Legislature thereof, on or before the first of January, eighteen hundred and forty; and the same, when so selected, to be used on such terms, conditions, and regulations, as the Legislature of the said State shall direct: Provided, That no salt spring, the right whereof is now vested in any individual or individuals, or which may hereafter be confirmed or adjudged to any individual or individuals, shall, by this section, be granted to said State: And provided, also, That the General Assembly shall never sell or lease the same, at any one time, for a longer period than ten years, without the consent of Congress.

Fifth. That five per cent. of the net proceeds of the sales of all public lands lying within the said State, which have been or shall be sold by Congress, from and after the first day of July, eighteen hundred and thirty-six, after deducting all the expenses incident to the same, shall be appropriated, for making public roads, and canals within the said State, as the Legislature may direct: Provided, That the five foregoing propositions herein offered, are on the condition that the Legislature of the said State, by virtue of the powers conferred upon it by the convention which framed the constitution of the said State, shall provide, by an ordinance irrevocable without the consent of the United States, that the said State shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil within the same by the United States, nor with any regulations Congress may find necessary for securing the title in such soil to the bona fide purchasers thereof; and that no tax shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States; (a) and that in no case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents; and that the bounty lands granted, or hereafter to be granted, for military services during the late war, shall, whilst they continue to be held by the patentees or their heirs, remain exempt from any tax laid by order or under the authority of the State, whether for State, county, township, or any other purpose, for the term of three years from and after the date of the patents respectively.

ACT FOR THE ADMISSION OF MICHIGAN—1837

[Twenty-fourth Congress, Second Session]

An Act to admit the State of Michigan into the Union upon an equal footing with the original States

Whereas, in pursuance of the act of Congress of June the fifteenth, eighteen hundred and thirty-six, entitled “An act to establish the northern boundary of the State of Ohio, and to provide for the Edition: current; Page: [1930] admission of the State of Michigan into the Union, upon the conditions therein expressed,” a convention of delegates, elected by the people of the said State of Michigan, for the sole purpose of giving their assent to the boundaries of the said State of Michigan, as described, declared, and established in and by the said act, did, on the fifteenth of December, eighteen hundred and thirty-six, assent to the provisions of the said act: Therefore,

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the State of Michigan shall be one, and is hereby declared to be one, of the United States of America, and admitted into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, in all respects whatever.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the Secretary of the Treasury, in carrying into effect the thirteenth and fourteenth sections of the act of the twenty-third of June, eighteen hundred and thirty-six, entitled “An act to regulate the deposits of the public money,” shall consider the State of Michigan as being one of the United States.

CONSTITUTION OF MICHIGAN—1835*a

In convention, begun at the city of Detroit, on the second Monday of May, in the year one thousand eight hundred and thirty-five:

We, the people of the Territory of Michigan, as established by the act of Congress of the eleventh of January, eighteen hundred and five, in conformity to the fifth article of the ordinance providing for the government of the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio, believing that the time has arrived when our present political condition ought to cease, and the right of self-government be asserted; and availing ourselves of that provision of the aforesaid ordinance of the Congress of the United States of the thirteenth day of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, and the acts of Congress passed in accordance therewith, which entitled us to admission into the Union, upon a condition which has been fulfilled, do, by our delegates in convention assembled, mutually agree to form ourselves into a free and independent State, by the style and title of “The State of Michigan,” and do ordain and establish the following constitution for the government of the same:

Article I

Section 1. All political power is inherent in the people.

Sec. 2. Government is instituted for the protection, security, and benefit of the people; and they have the right at all times to alter or reform the same, and to abolish one form of government and establish another, whenever the public good requires it.

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Sec. 3. No man or set of men are entitled to exclusive or separate privileges.

Sec. 4. Every person has a right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of his own conscience; and no person can of right be compelled to attend, erect, or support, against his will, any place of religious worship, or pay any tithes, taxes, or other rates for the support of any minister of the gospel or teacher of religion.

Sec. 5. No money shall be drawn from the treasury for the benefit of religious socities, or theological or religious seminaries.

Sec. 6. The civil and political rights, privileges, and capacities of no individual shall be diminished or enlarged on account of his opinions or belief concerning matters of religion.

Sec. 7. Every person may freely speak, write, and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that right; and no laws shall be passed to restrain or abridge the liberty of speech or of the press. In all prosecutions or indictments for libels, the truth may be given in evidence to the jury; and if it shall appear to the jury that the matter charged as libellous is true, and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted; and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the fact.

Sec. 8. The person, houses, papers, and possessions of every individual shall be secure from unreasonable searches and seizures; and no warrant to search any place, or to seize any person or things, shall issue without describing them, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.

Sec. 9. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 10. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall have the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the vicinage; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; to have the assistance of counsel for his defence; and in all civil cases, in which personal liberty may be involved, the trial by jury shall not be refused.

Sec. 11. No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offence, unless on the presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases of impeachment, or in cases cognizable by justices of the peace, or arising in the army or militia when in actual service in time of war or public danger.

Sec. 12. No person for the same offence shall be twice put in jeopardy of punishment; all persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offences, when the proof is evident or the presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it.

Sec. 13. Every person has a right to bear arms for the defence of himself and the State.

Sec. 14. The military shall, in all cases and at all times, be in strict subordination to the civil power.

Sec. 15. No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner prescribed by law.

Sec. 16. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against it, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort; Edition: current; Page: [1932] no person shall be convicted of treason, unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Sec. 17. No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, shall be passed.

Sec. 18. Excessive bail shall not be required; excessive fines shall not be imposed; and cruel and unjust punishments shall not be inflicted.

Sec. 19. The property of no person shall be taken for public use, without just compensation therefor.

Sec. 20. The people shall have the right freely to assemble together to consult for the common good, to instruct their representatives, and to petition the legislature for redress of grievances.

Sec. 21. All acts of the legislature, contrary to this or any other article of this constitution, shall be void.

Article II: ELECTORS

Section 1. In all elections, every white male citizen above the age of twenty-one years, having resided in the State six months next preceding any election, shall be entitled to vote at such election; and every white male inhabitant of the age aforesaid, who may be a resident of the State at the time of the signing of this constitution, shall have the right of voting as aforesaid; but no such citizen or inhabitant shall be entitled to vote except in the district, county, or township in which he shall actually reside at the time of such election.

Sec. 2. All votes shall be given by ballot, except for such township officers as may, by law, be directed to be otherwise chosen.

Sec. 3. Electors shall, in all cases except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections, and in going to and returning from the same.

Sec. 4. No elector shall be obliged to do military duty on the days of election, except in time of war or public danger.

Sec. 5. No person shall be deemed to have lost his residence in this State by reason of his absence on business of the United States, or of this State.

Sec. 6. No soldier, seaman, or marine, in the Army or Navy of the United States, shall be deemed a resident of this State in consequence of being stationed in any military or naval place within the same.

Article III: DIVISION OF THE POWERS OF GOVERNMENT

The powers of the government shall be divided into three distinct departments: the legislative, the executive, and the judicial; and one department shall never exercise the powers of another, except in such cases as are expressly provided for in this constitution.

Edition: current; Page: [1933]

Article IV: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The legislative power shall be vested in a senate and house of representatives.

Sec. 2. The number of the members of the house of representatives shall never be less than forty-eight, nor more than one hundred; and the senate shall, at all times, equal in number one-third of the house of representatives, as nearly as may be.

Sec. 3. The legislature shall provide by law for an enumeration of the inhabitants of this State in the years eighteen hundred and thirty-seven and eighteen hundred and forty-five, and every ten years after the said last-mentioned time; and at their first session after each enumeration so made as aforesaid, and also after each enumeration made by the authority of the United States, the legislature shall apportion anew the representatives and senators among the several counties and districts, according to the number of white inhabitants.

Sec. 4. The representatives shall be chosen annually on the first Monday of November, and on the following day, by the electors of the several counties or districts into which the State shall be divided for that purpose. Each organized county shall be entitled to at least one representative; but no county hereafter organized shall be entitled to a separate representative, until it shall have attained a population equal to the ratio of representation hereafter established.

Sec. 5. The senators shall be chosen for two years, at the same time and in the same manner as the representatives are required to be chosen. At the first session of the legislature under this constitution, they shall be divided by lot from their respective districts, as nearly as may be, into two equal classes; the seats of the senators of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the first year, and of the second class at the expiration of the second year; so that one-half thereof, as nearly as may be, shall be chosen annually thereafter.

Sec. 6. The State shall be divided, at each new apportionment, into a number of not less than four, nor more than eight, senatorial districts, to be always composed of contiguous territory; so that each district shall elect an equal number of senators annually, as nearly as may be; and no county shall be divided in the formation of such districts.

Sec. 7. Senators and representatives shall be citizens of the United States, and be qualified electors in the respective counties and districts which they represent; and a removal from their respective counties or districts shall be deemel a vacation of their seats.

Sec. 8. No person holding any office under the United States, or of this State, officers of the militia, justices of the peace, associate judges of the circuit and county courts, and postmasters excepted, shall be eligible to either house of the legislature.

Sec. 9. Senators and representatives shall, in all cases except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest, nor shall they be subject to any civil process, during the session of the legislature, nor for fifteen days next before the commencement and after the termination of each session.

Sec. 10. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and Edition: current; Page: [1934] may compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide. Each house shall choose its own officers.

Sec. 11. Each house shall determine the rules of its proceedings, and judge of the qualifications, elections, and returns of its own members; and may, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members elected, expel a member; but no member shall be expelled a second time for the same cause, nor for any cause known to his constituents antecedent to his election.

Sec. 12. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same, except such parts as may require secrecy; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall, at the request of one-fifth of the members present, be entered on the journal. Any member of either house shall have liberty to dissent from and protest against any act or resolution which he may think injurious to the public or an individual, and have the reasons of his dissent entered on the journal.

Sec. 13. In all elections by either or both houses, the votes shall be given viva voce; and all votes on nominations made to the senate shall be taken by yeas and nays, and published with the journals of its proceedings.

Sec. 14. The doors of each house shall be open, except when the public welfare shall require secrecy; neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that where the legislature may then be in session.

Sec. 15. Any bill may originate in either house of the legislature.

Sec. 16. Every bill passed by the legislature shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the governor; if he approve, he shall sign it; but if not, he shall return it with his objections to that house in which it originated, who shall enter the objections at large upon their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of all the members present agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by whom it shall likewise be reconsidered; and if approved also by two-thirds of all the members present in that house, it shall become a law; but in such cases, the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the members voting for or against the bill shall be entered on the journals of each house respectively. And if any bill be not returned by the governor within ten days, Sundays excepted, after it has been presented to him, the same shall become a law, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by their adjournment, prevent its return, in which case it shall not become a law.

Sec. 17. Every resolution to which the concurrence of the senate and house of representatives may be necessary, except in cases of adjournment, shall be presented to the governor, and, before the same shall take effect, shall be proceeded upon in the same manner as in the case of a bill.

Sec. 18. The members of the legislature shall receive for their services a compensation to be ascertained by law, and paid out of the public treasury; but no increase of the compensation shall take effect during the term for which the members of either house shall have been elected; and such compensation shall never exceed three dollars a day.

Edition: current; Page: [1935]

Sec. 19. No member of the legislature shall receive any civil appointment from the governor and senate, or from the legislature, during the term for which he is elected.

Sec. 20. The governor shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as may occur in the senate and house of representatives.

Sec. 21. The legislature shall meet on the first Monday in January in every year, and at no other period, unless otherwise directed by law, or provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 22. The style of the laws of this State shall be, “Be it enacted by the senate and house of representatives of the State of Michigan.

Article V: EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The supreme executive power shall be vested in a governor, who shall hold his office for two years; and a lieutenant-governor shall be chosen at the same time and for the same term.

Sec. 2. No person shall be eligible to the office of governor or lieutenant-governor, who shall not have been five years a citizen of the United States, and a resident of this State two years next preceding the election.

Sec. 3. The governor and lieutenant-governor shall be elected by the electors at the times and places of choosing members of the legislature. The persons having the highest number of votes for governor and lieutenant-governor shall be elected; but in case two or more have an equal and the highest number of votes for governor or lieutenant-governor, the legislature shall, by joint vote, choose one of the said persons, so having an equal and the highest number of votes, for governor or lieutenant-governor.

Sec. 4. The returns of every election for governor and lieutenant-governor shall be sealed up and transmitted to the seat of government, by the returning-officers, directed to the president of the senate, who shall open and publish them in the presence of the members of both houses.

Sec. 5. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the militia, and of the army and navy of this State.

Sec. 6. He shall transact all executive business with the officers of government, civil and military; and may require information, in writing, from the officers in the executive department, upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 7. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.

Sec. 8. He shall have power to convene the legislature on extraordinary occasions. He shall communicate, by message, to the legislature, at every session, the condition of the State, and recomment such matters to them as he shall deem expedient.

Sec. 9. He shall have power to adjourn the legislature to such time as he may think proper, in case of a disagreement between the two houses with respect to the time of adjournment, but not to a period beyond the next annual meeting.

Sec. 10. He may direct the legislature to meet at some other place than the seat of government, if that shall become, after its adjournment, dangerous from a common enemy or a contagious disease.

Edition: current; Page: [1936]

Sec. 11. He shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons after conviction, except in cases of impeachment.

Sec. 12. When any office, the appointment to which is vested in the governor and senate, or in the legislature, becomes vacant during the recess of the legislature, the governor shall have power to fill such vacancy by granting a commission, which shall expire at the end of the succeeding session of the legislature.

Sec. 13. In case of the impeachment of the governor, his removal from office, death, resignation, or absence from the State, the powers and duties of the office shall devolve upon the lieutenant-governor until such disability shall cease, or the vacancy be filled.

Sec. 14. If, during the vacancy of the office of governor, the lieutenant-governor shall be impeached, displaced, resign, die, or be absent from the State, the president of the senate pro tempore shall act as governor until the vacancy be filled.

Sec. 15. The lieutenant-governor shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate; in committee of the whole, he may debate on all questions; and, when there is an equal division, he shall give the casting vote.

Sec. 16. No member of Congress, nor any other person holding office under the United States, or this State, shall execute the office of governor.

Sec. 17. Whenever the office of governor or lieutenant-governor becomes vacant, the person exercising the powers of governor for the time being shall give notice thereof, and the electors shall, at the next succeeding annual election for members of the legislature, choose a person to fill such vacancy.

Sec. 18. The governor shall, at stated times, receive for his services a compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the term for which he has been elected.

Sec. 19. The lieutenant-governor, except when acting as governor, and the president of the senate pro tempore, shall each receive the same compensation as shall be allowed to the speaker of the house of representatives.

Sec. 20. A great seal for the State shall be provided by the governor, which shall contain the device and inscriptions represented and described in the papers relating thereto, signed by the president of the convention, and deposited in the office of the secretary of the territory. It shall be kept by the secretary of state; and all official acts of the governor, his approbation of the laws excepted, shall be thereby authenticated.

Sec. 21. All grants and commissions shall be in the name and by the authority of the people of the State of Michigan.

Article VI: JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The judicial power shall be vested in one supreme court, and in such other courts as the legislature may from time to time establish.

Sec. 2. The judges of the supreme court shall hold their offices for the term of seven years; they shall be nominated and, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, appointed by the governor. Edition: current; Page: [1937] They shall receive an adequate compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office. But they shall receive no fees nor perquisites of office, nor hold any other office or profit or trust under the authority of this State, or of the United States.

Sec. 3. A court of probate shall be established in each of the organized counties.

Sec. 4. Judges of all county courts, associate judges of circuit courts, and judges of probate shall be elected by the qualified electors of the county in which they reside, and shall hold their offices for four years.

Sec. 5. The supreme court shall appoint their clerk or clerks; and the electors of each county shall elect a clerk, to be denominated a county clerk, who shall hold his office for the term of two years, and shall perform the duties of clerk to all the courts of record to be held in each county, except the supreme court and court of probate.

Sec. 6. Each township may elect four justices of the peace, who shall hold their offices for four years; and whose powers and duties shall be defined and regulated by law. At their first election they shall be classed and divided by lot into numbers one, two, three, and four, to be determined in such manner as shall be prescribed by law, so that one justice shall be annually elected in each township thereafter. A removal of any justice from the township in which he was elected shall vacate his office. In all incorporated towns, or cities, it shall be competent for the legislature to increase the number of justices.

Sec. 7. The style of all process shall be, “In the name of the people of the State of Michigan;” and all indictments shall conclude, “Against the peace and dignity of the same.”

Article VII: CERTAIN STATE AND COUNTY OFFICERS

Section 1. There shall be a secretary of state, who shall hold his office for two years, and who shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate. He shall keep a fair record of the official acts of the legislative and executive departments of the government; and shall, when required, lay the same, and all matters relative thereto, before either branch of the legislature; and shall perform such other duties as shall be assigned him by law.

Sec. 2. A State treasurer shall be appointed by a joint vote of the two houses of the legislature, and shall hold his office for the term of two years.

Sec. 3. There shall be an auditor-general and an attorney-general for the State, and a prosecuting attorney for each of the respective counties, who shall hold their offices for two years, and who shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, and whose powers and duties shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 4. There shall be a sheriff, a county treasurer, and one or more coroners, a register of deeds, and a county surveyor, chosen by the electors in each of the several counties, once in every two years, Edition: current; Page: [1938] and as often as vacancies shall happen. The sheriff shall hold no other office, and shall not be capable of holding the office of sheriff longer than four in any term of six years. He may be required by law to renew his security from time to time, and in default of giving such security, his office shall be deemed vacant; but the county shall never be made responsible for the acts of the sheriff.

Article VIII: IMPEACHMENTS AND REMOVALS FROM OFFICE.

Section 1. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeaching all civil officers of the State for corrupt conduct in office, or for crimes and misdemeanors; but a majority of all the members elected shall be necessary to direct an impeachment.

Sec. 2. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate. When the governor or lieutenant-governor shall be tried, the chief justice of the supreme court shall preside. Before the trial of an impeachment, the members of the court shall take an oath or affirmation truly and impartially to try and determine the charge in question according to the evidence; and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present. Judgment, in cases of impeachment, shall not extend further than to removal from office; but the party convicted shall be liable to indictment and punishment according to law.

Sec. 3. For any reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient ground for the impeachment of the judges of any of the courts, the governor shall remove any of them on the address of two-thirds of each branch of the legislature; but the cause or causes for which such removal may be required shall be stated at length in the address.

Sec. 4. The legislature shall provide by law for the removal of justices of the peace, and other county and township officers, in such manner and for such cause as to them shall seem just and proper.

Article IX: MILITIA

Section 1. The legislature shall provide by law for organizing and disciplining the militia, in such manner as they shall deem expedient, not incompatible with the Constitution and laws of the United States.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall provide for the efficient discipline of the officers, commissioned and non-commissioned, and musicians, and may provide by law for the organization and discipline of volunteer companies.

Sec. 3. Officers of the militia shall be elected or appointed in such manner as the legislature shall from time to time direct, and shall be commissioned by the governor.

Sec. 4. The governor shall have power to call forth the militia, to execute the laws of the State, to suppress insurrections, and repel invasions.

Edition: current; Page: [1939]

Article X: EDUCATION

Section 1. The governor shall nominate and, by and with the advice and consent of the legislature in joint vote, shall appoint a superintendent of public instruction, who shall hold his office for two years, and whose duties shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall encourage, by all suitable means, the promotion of intellectual, scientifical, and agricultural improvement. The proceeds of all lands that have been or hereafter may be granted by the United States to this State, for the support of schools, which shall hereafter be sold or disposed of, shall be and remain a perpetual fund, the interest of which, together with the rents of all such unsold lands, shall be inviolably appropriated to the support of schools throughout the State.

Sec. 3. The legislature shall provide for a system of common schools, by which a school shall be kept up and supported in each school-district at least three months in every year; and any school-district neglecting to keep up and support such a school may be deprived of its equal proportion of the interest of the public fund.

Sec. 4. As soon as the circumstances of the State will permit, the legislature shall provide for the establishment of libraries; one at least in each township; and the money which shall be paid by persons as an equivalent for exemption from military duty, and the clear proceeds of all fines assessed in the several counties for any breach of the penal laws, shall be exclusively applied to the support of said libraries.

Sec. 5. The legislature shall take measures for the protection, improvement, or other disposition of such lands as have been or may hereafter be reserved or granted by the United States to this State for the support of a university, and the funds accruing from the rents or sale of such lands, or from any other source, for the purpose aforesaid, shall be and remain a permanent fund for the support of said university, with such branches as the public convenience may hereafter demand for the promotion of literature, the arts and sciences, and as may be authorized by the terms of such grant. And it shall be the duty of the legislature, as soon as may be, to provide effectual means for the improvement and permanent security of the funds of said university.

Article XI: PROHIBITION OF SLAVERY

Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude shall ever be introduced into this State, except for the punishment of crimes of which the party shall have been duly convicted.

Article XII: MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Section 1. Members of the legislature, and all officers, executive and judicial, except such inferior officers as may by law be exempted, shall, before they enter on the duties of their respective offices, take and subscribe the following oath or affirmation: “I do solemnly Edition: current; Page: [1940] swear [or affirm, as the case may be] that I will support the Constitution of the United States and the constitution of this State, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of ———, according to the best of my ability.” And no other oath, declaration, or test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall pass no act of incorporation, unless with the assent of at least two-thirds of each house.

Sec. 3. Internal improvement shall be encouraged by the government of this State; and it shall be the duty of the legislature, as soon as may be, to make provision by law for ascertaining the proper objects of improvement in relation to roads, canals, and navigable waters; and it shall also be their duty to provide by law for an equal, systematic, and economical application of the funds which may be appropriated to these objects.

Sec. 4. No money shall be drawn from the treasury but in consequence of appropriations made by law; and an accurate statement of the receipts and expenditures of the public money shall be attached to and published with the laws annually.

Sec. 5. Divorces shall not be granted by the legislature, but the legislature may by law authorize the higher courts to grant them, under such restrictions as they may deem expedient.

Sec. 6. No lottery shall be authorized by this State, nor shall the sale of lottery-tickets be allowed.

Sec. 7. No county now organized by law shall ever be reduced, by the organization of new counties, to less than four hundred square miles.

Sec. 8. The governor, secretary of state, treasurer, and auditor-general shall keep their offices at the seat of government.

Sec. 9. The seat of government for this State shall be at Detroit, or at such other place or places as may be prescribed by law, until the year eighteen hundred and forty-seven, when it shall be permanently located by the legislature.

Sec. 10. The first governor and lieutenant-governor shall hold their offices until the first Monday of January, eighteen hundred and thirty-eight, and until others shall be elected and qualified, and thereafter they shall hold their offices for two years, and until their successors shall be elected and qualified.

Sec. 11. When a vacancy shall happen, occasioned by the death, resignation, or removal from office of any person holding office under this State, the successor thereto shall hold his office for the period which his predecessor had to serve, and no longer, unless again chosen or reappointed.

Article XIII: MODE OF AMENDING AND REVISING THE CONSTITUTION

Section 1. Any amendment or amendments to this constitution may be proposed in the senate or house of representatives; and if the same shall be agreed to by a majority of the members elected to each of the two houses, such proposed amendment or amendments shall be entered on their journals, with the yeas and nays taken thereon, and referred to the legislature then next to be chosen, and shall be published Edition: current; Page: [1941] for three months previous to the time of making such choice. And if in the legislature next chosen as aforesaid such proposed amendment or amendments shall be agreed to by two-thirds of all the members elected to each house, then it shall be the duty of the legislature to submit such proposed amendment or amendments to the people, in such manner and at such time as the legislature shall prescribe; and if the people shall approve and ratify such amendment or amendments, by a majority of the electors qualified to vote for members of the legislature voting thereon, such amendment or amendments shall become part of the constitution.

Sec. 2. And if at any time two-thirds of the senate and house of representatives shall think it necessary to revise or change this entire constitution, they shall recommend to the electors at the next election for members of the legislature to vote for or against a convention; and if it shall appear that a majority of the electors voting at such election have voted in favor of calling a convention, the legislature shall at its next session provide by law for calling a convention to be holden within six months after the passage of such law; and such convention shall consist of a number of members not less than that of both branches of the legislature.

Schedule

Section 1. That no inconvenience may arise from a change of the territorial government to a permanent State government, it is declared that all writs, actions, prosecutions, contracts, claims, and rights of individuals and of bodies-corporate shall continue as if no change had taken place in this government; and all process which may, before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution, be issued under the authority of the Territory of Michigan, shall be as valid as if issued in the name of the State.

Sec. 2. All laws now in force in the Territory of Michigan, which are not repugnant to this constitution, shall remain in force until they expire by their own limitations, or be altered or repealed by the legislature.

Sec. 3. All fines, penalties, forfeitures, and escheats accruing to the Territory of Michigan shall accrue to the use of the State.

Sec. 4. All recognizances heretofore taken, or which may be taken before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution, shall remain valid, and shall pass over to and may be prosecuted in the name of the State. And all bonds executed to the governor of this Territory, or to any other officer in his official capacity, shall pass over to the governor or other proper State authority, and to their successors in office, for the uses therein respectively expressed, and may be sued for and recovered accordingly. All criminal prosecutions and penal actions which have arisen or which may arise before the organization of the judicial department under this constitution, and which shall then be depending, may be prosecuted to judgment and execution in the name of the State.

Sec. 5. All officers, civil and military, now holding their offices and appointments in this Territory under the authority of the United States, or under the authority of this Territory, shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices and appointments until superseded under this constitution.

Edition: current; Page: [1942]

Sec. 6. The first election for governor, lieutenant-governor, members of the State legislature, and a Representative in the Congress of the United States, shall be held on the first Monday in October next, and on the succeeding day. And the president of the convention shall issue writs to the sheriffs of the several counties or districts, or, in case of vacancy, to the coroners, requiring them to cause such election to be held on the days aforesaid, in their respective counties or districts. The election shall be conducted in the manner prescribed, and by the township officers designated as inspectors of elections, and the returns made as required by the existing laws of the Territory, or by this constitution: Provided, however, That the returns of the several townships in the district composed of the unorganized counties of Ottawa, Ionia, Kent, and Clinton shall be made to the clerk of the township of Kent in said district, and the said township clerk shall perform the same duties as by the existing laws of the Territory devolve upon the clerks of the several counties in similar cases.

Sec. 7. The first meeting of the legislature shall be at the city of Detroit, on the first Monday in November next, with power to adjourn to any other place.

Sec. 8. All county and township officers shall continue to hold their respective offices, unless removed by the competent authority, until the legislature shall, in conformity to the provisions of this constitution, provide for the holding of elections to fill such offices respectively.

Sec. 9. This constitution shall be submitted, at the election to be held on the first Monday in October next, and on the succeeding day, for ratification or rejection, to the electors qualified by this constitution to vote at all elections; and if the same be ratified by the said electors, the same shall become the constitution of the State of Michigan. At the election aforesaid, on such of the ballots as are for the said constitution, shall be written or printed the word “Yes,” and on those which are against the ratification of said constitution, the word “No.” And the returns of the votes on the question of ratification or rejection of said constitution shall be made to the president of this convention at any time before the first Monday in November next, and a digest of the same communicated by him to the senate and house of representatives on that day.

Sec. 10. And if this constitution shall be ratified by the people of Michigan, the president of this convention shall, immediately after the same shall be ascertained, cause a fair copy thereof, together with an authenticated copy of the act of the legislative council, entitled “An act to enable the people of Michigan to form a constitution and State government,” approved January 26, 1835, providing for the calling of this convention, and also a copy of so much of the last census of this Territory as exhibits the number of the free inhabitants of that part thereof which is comprised within the limits in said constitution defined as the boundaries of the proposed State of Michigan, to be forwarded to the President of the United States, together with an expression of the decided opinion of this convention that the number of the free inhabitants of said proposed State now exceeds the number requisite to constitute two congressional districts, and the respectful request of this convention, in behalf of the people of Michigan, that all said matters may be by him laid before the Congress of the United States at their next session.

Edition: current; Page: [1943]

Sec. 11. In case of the failure of the president of this convention to perform the duties prescribed by this constitution, by reason of his absence, death, or from any other cause, said duties shall be performed by the secretaries of this convention.

Sec. 12. Until the first enumeration shall be made, as directed by this constitution, the county of Wayne shall be entitled to eight representatives; the county of Monroe to four representatives; the county of Washtenaw to seven representatives; the county of Saint Clair to one representative; the county of Saint Joseph to two representatives; the county of Berrien to one representative; the county of Calhoun to one representative; the county of Jackson to one representative; the county of Cass to two representatives; the county of Oakland to six representatives; the county of Macomb to three representatives; the county of Lenawee to four representatives; the county of Kalamazoo, and the unorganized counties of Allegan and Barry, to two representatives; the county of Branch to one representative; the county of Hillsdale to one representative; the county of Lapeer to one representative; the county of Saginaw, and the unorganized counties of Genesee and Shiawasse, to one representative; the county of Michilimackinac to one representative; the county of Chippewa to one representative; and the unorganized counties of Ottawa, Kent, Ionia, and Clinton to one representative.

And for the election of senators the State shall be divided into five districts, and the apportionment shall be as follows: The county of Wayne shall compose the first district, and elect three senators; the counties of Monroe and Lewanee shall compose the second district, and elect three senators; the counties of Hillsdale, Branch, Saint Joseph, Cass, Berrien, Kalamazoo, and Calhoun shall compose the third district, and elect three senators; the counties of Washtenaw and Jackson shall compose the fourth district, and elect three senators; and the counties of Oakland, Lapeer, Saginaw, Macomb, Saint Clair, Michilimackinac, and Chippewa shall compose the fifth district, and elect four senators.

Any country attached to any county for judicial purposes, if not otherwise represented, shall be considered as forming part of such county, so far as regards elections for the purpose of representation in the legislature.

John Biddle, President.

ORDINANCE

Be it ordained by the convention assembled to form a constitution for the State of Michigan, in behalf and by authority of the people of said State, That the following propositions be submitted to the Congress of the United States, which, if assented to by that body, shall be obligatory on this State:

1. Section numbered sixteen in every surveyed township of the public lands, and, where such section has been sold or otherwise disposed of, other lands equivalent thereto, and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to the State for the use of schools.

2. The seventy-two sections of land set apart and reserved for the use and support of a university, by an act of Congress approved on the twentieth day of May, eighteen hundred and twenty-six, entitled “An act concerning a seminary of learning in the Territory of Michigan,” shall, together with such further quantities as may Edition: current; Page: [1944] be agreed upon by Congress, be conveyed to the State, and shall be appropriated solely to the use and support of such university, in such manner as the legislature may prescribe.

3. Four entire sections of land, to be selected under the direction of the legislature, from any of the unappropriated lands belonging to the United States, shall be granted to the State for its use in establishing a seat of government.

AMENDMENT TO THE CONSTITUTION OF 1835a

(Ratified 1839)

Art. II. Sec. 1. Strike out the words “district, county, or township,” and substitute in the place thereof “township or ward.”

(Ratified 1843)

That the constitution of this State be so amended that every law authorizing the borrowing of money or the issuing of State stocks, whereby a debt shall be created on the credit of the State, shall specify the object for which the money shall be appropriated; and that every such law shall embrace no more than one such object, which shall be simply and specifically stated, and that no such law shall take effect until it shall be submitted to the people at the next general election, and be approved by a majority of the votes cast for and against it at such election; that all money to be raised by the authority of such law be applied to the specific object stated in such law, and to no other purpose, except the payment of such debt thereby created. This provision shall not extend or apply to any law to raise money for defraying the actual expenses of the legislature, the judicial and State officers, for suppressing insurrection, repelling invasion, or defending the State in time of war.

(Ratified 1844)

Art. IV. Sec. 4. Strike out the words “On the first Monday in November and on the following days,” and insert the words “On the first Tuesday,” so that said section will read: “The representatives shall be chosen annually on the first Tuesday of November, by the electors of the several counties or districts into which the State shall be divided for that purpose.”

CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF MICHIGAN—1850*

The People of the State of Michigan do ordain this Constitution

Article I: BOUNDARIES

The state of Michigan consists of and has jurisdiction over the territory embraced within the following boundaries, to-wit: Commencing at a point on the eastern boundary line of the state of Edition: current; Page: [1945] Indiana, where a direct line drawn from the southern extremity of Lake Michigan to the most northerly cape of the Maumee bay shall intersect the same—said point being the northwest corner of the state of Ohio, as established by act of congress, entitled “An act to establish the northern boundary line of the state of Ohio, and to provide for the admission of the state of Michigan into the union upon the conditions therein expressed,” approved June fifteenth, one thousand eight hundred and thirty-six, thence with the said boundary line of the state of Ohio, till it intersects the boundary line between the United States and Canada in Lake Erie, thence with said boundary line between the United States and Canada through the Detroit river, Lake Huron and Lake Superior to a point where the said line last touches Lake Superior; thence in a direct line through Lake Superior to the mouth of the Montreal river; thence through the middle of the main channel of the said river Montreal to the head waters thereof; thence in a direct line to the center of the channel between Middle and South islands in the Lake of the Desert; thence in a direct line to the southern shore of Lake Brule; thence along said southern shore and down the river Brule to the main channel of the Menominee river; thence down the center of the main channel of the same to the center of the most usual ship channel of the Green Bay of Lake Michigan; thence through the center of the most usual ship channel of the said bay to the middle of Lake Michigan; thence through the middle of Lake Michigan to the northern boundary of the state of Indiana, as that line was established by the act of congress of the nineteenth of April, eighteen hundred and sixteen; thence due east with the north boundary line of the said state of Indiana to the northeast corner thereof; and thence south with the eastern boundary line of Indiana to the place of beginning.

Article II: SEAT OF GOVERNMENT

The seat of government shall be at Lansing, where it is now established.

Article III: DIVISION OF THE POWERS OF GOVERNMENT

Section 1. The powers of government are divided into three departments: The legislative, executive and judicial.

Sec. 2. No person belonging to one department shall exercise the powers properly belonging to another, except in the cases expressly provided in this constitution.

Article IV: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The legislative power is vested in a senate and house of representatives.

Sec. 2. The senate shall consist of thirty-two members. Senators shall be elected for two years and by single districts. Such districts shall be numbered from one to thirty-two inclusive, each of which Edition: current; Page: [1946] shall choose one senator. No county shall be divided in the formation of senate districts, except such county shall be equitably entitled to two or more senators.

aSec. 3. The house of representatives shall consist of not less than sixty-four nor more than one hundred members. Representatives shall be chosen for two years and by single districts. Each representative district shall contain, as nearly as may be, an equal number of inhabitants, exclusive of persons of Indian descent who are not civilized or are members of any tribe, and shall consist of convenient and contiguous territory. But no township or city shall be divided in the formation of a representative district. When any township or city shall contain a population which entitles it to more than one representative, then such township or city shall elect by general ticket the number of representatives to which it is entitled. Each county hereafter organized, with such territory as may be attached thereto, shall be entitled to a separate representative when it has attained a population equal to a moiety of the ratio of representation. In every county entitled to more than one representative the board of supervisors shall assemble at such time and place as the legislature shall prescribe and divide the same into representative districts, equal to the number of representatives to which such county is entitled by law, and shall cause to be filed in the offices of the secretary of state and clerk of such county, a description of such representative districts, specifying the number of each district and population thereof, according to the last preceding enumeration.

aSec. 4. The legislature shall provide by law for an enumeration of the inhabitants in the year eighteen hundred and fifty-four and every ten years thereafter; and at the first session after each enumeration so made, and also at the first session after each enumeration by the authority of the United States, the legislature shall rearrange the senate districts and apportion anew the representatives among the counties and districts, according to the number of inhabitants, exclusive of persons of Indian descent who are not civilized or are members of any tribe. Each apportionment and the division into representative districts by any board of supervisors shall remain unaltered until the return of another enumeration.

Sec. 5. Senators and representatives shall be citizens of the United States and qualified electors in the respective counties and districts which they represent. A removal from their respective counties or districts shall be deemed a vacation of their office.

Sec. 6. No person holding any office under the United States [or this state]b or any county office, except notaries public, officers of the militia and officers elected by townships, shall be eligible to or have a seat in either house of the legislature, and all votes given for any such person shall be void.

Sec. 7. Senators and representatives shall in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest. They shall not be subject to any civil process during the session of the legislature, or for fifteen days next before the commencement and after the termination of each session. They shall not be questioned in any other place for any speech in either house.

Edition: current; Page: [1947]

Sec. 8. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may prescribe.

Sec. 9. Each house shall choose its own officers, determine the rules of its proceedings and judge of the qualifications, elections and returns of its members, and may, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members elected, expel a member. No member shall be expelled a second time for the same cause, nor for any cause known to his constituents antecedent to his election; the reason for such expulsion shall be entered upon the journal, with the names of the members voting on the question.

Sec. 10. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings and publish the same except such parts as may require secrecy. The yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall be entered on the journal at the request of one-fifth of the members elected. Any member of either house may dissent from and protest against any act, proceeding or resolution which he may deem injurious to any person or the public, and have the reason of his dissent entered on the journal.

Sec. 11. In all elections by either house or in joint convention the votes shall be given viva voce. All votes on nominations to the senate shall be taken by yeas and nays, and published with the journal of its proceedings.

Sec. 12. The doors of each house shall be open unless the public welfare requires secrecy. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than where the legislature may then be in session.

Sec. 13. Bills may originate in either house of the legislature.

Sec. 14. Every bill and concurrent resolution, except of adjournment, passed by the legislature, shall be presented to the governor before it becomes a law. If he approve, he shall sign it; but if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it originated, which shall enter the objections at large upon their journal, and reconsider it. On such reconsideration if two-thirds of the members elected agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall be reconsidered. If approved by two-thirds of the members elected to that house, it shall become a law. In such case the vote of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the members voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journals of each house respectively. If any will be not returned by the governor within ten days, Sundays excepted, after it has been presented to him, the same shall become a few, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by their adjournment, prevent its return, in which case it shall not become a law. The governor may approve, sign and file in the office of the secretary of state, within five days after the adjournment of the legislature, any act passed during the last five days of the session, and the same shall become a law.

aSec. 15. The compensation of the members of the legislature shall be three dollars per day for actual attendance and when absent Edition: current; Page: [1948] on account of sickness, but the legislature may allow extra compensation to the members from the territory of the upper peninsula, not exceeding two dollars per day during a session. When convened in extra session their compensation shall be three dollars a day for the first twenty days and nothing thereafter; and they shall legislate on no other subjects than those expressly stated in the governor’s proclamation, or submitted to them by special message. They shall be entitled to ten cents and no more for every mile actually traveled, in going to and returning from the place of meeting, on the usually traveled route, and for stationery and newspapers not exceeding five dollars for each member during any session. Each member shall be entitled to one copy of the laws, journals and documents of the legislature of which he was a member, but shall not receive, at the expense of the state, books, newspapers or other perquisites of office not expressly authorized by this constitution.

Sec. 16. The legislature may provide by law for the payment of postage on all mailable matter received by its members and officers during the sessions of the legislature, but not on any sent or mailed by them.

Sec. 17. The president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives shall be entitled to the same per diem compensation and mileage as members of the legislature, and no more.

Sec. 18. No person elected a member of the legislature shall receive any civil appointment within this state, or to the senate of the United States, from the governor, the governor and senate, from the legislature, or any other state authority, during the term for which he is elected. All such appointments and all votes given for any person so elected for any such office or appointment shall be void. No member of the legislature shall be interested, directly or indirectly, in any contract with the state or any county thereof, authorized by any law passed during the time for which he is elected, nor for one year thereafter.

Sec. 19. Every bill and joint resolution shall be read three times in each house before the final passage thereof. No bill or joint resolution shall become a law without the concurrence of a majority of all the members elected to each house. On the final passage of all bills the vote shall be by ayes and nays and entered on the journal.

Sec. 20. No law shall embrace more than one object, which shall be expressed in its title. No public act shall take effect or be in force until the expiration of ninety days from the end of the session at which the same is passed, unless the legislature shall otherwise direct, by a two-thirds vote of the members elected to each house.

Sec. 21. The legislature shall not grant nor authorize extra compensation to any public officer, agent or contractor, after the service has been rendered or the contract entered into.

Sec. 22. The legislature shall provide by law that the furnishing of fuel and stationery for the use of the state, the printing and binding the laws and journals, all blanks, paper and printing for the executive departments and all other printing ordered by the legislature, shall be let by contract to the lowest bidder or bidders, who shall give adequate and satisfactory security for the performance thereof. The legislature shall prescribe by law the manner in which the state printing shall be executed, and the accounts rendered therefor; and shall prohibit all charges for constructive labor. They shall not rescind Edition: current; Page: [1949] nor alter such contract, nor release the person or persons taking the same, or his or their sureties, from the performance of any of the conditions of the contract. No member of the legislature nor officer of the state shall be interested directly or indirectly in any such contract.

Sec. 23. The legislature shall not authorize, by private or special law, the sale or conveyance of any real estate belonging to any person; nor vacate nor alter any road laid out by commissioners of highways or any street in any city or village, or in any recorded town plat.

Sec. 24. The legislature may authorize the employment of a chaplain for the state prison; but no money shall be appropriated for the payment of any religious services in either house of the legislature.

Sec. 25. No law shall be revised, altered or amended by reference to its title only; but the act revised and the section or sections of the act altered or amended shall be re-enacted and published at length.

Sec. 26. Divorces shall not be granted by the legislature.

Sec. 27. The legislature shall not authorize any lottery nor permit the sale of lottery tickets.

aSec. 28. Repealed.

Sec. 29. In case of a contested election, the person only shall receive from the state per diem compensation and mileage who is declared to be entitled to a seat by the house in which the contest takes place.

Sec. 30. No collector, holder nor disburser of public moneys shall have a seat in the legislature, or be eligible to any office of trust or profit under this state, until he shall have accounted for and paid over, as provided by law, all sums for which he may be liable.

Sec. 31. The legislature shall not audit nor allow any private claim or account.

Sec. 32. The legislature, on the day of final adjournment, shall adjourn at twelve o’clock at noon.

bSec. 33. The legislature shall meet at seat of government on the first Wednesday in January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty-one, and on the first Wednesday of January in every second year thereafter, and at no other place or time unless as provided in this constitution of the state, and shall adjourn without day at such time as the legislature shall fix by concurrent resolution.

Sec. 34. The election of senators and representatives, pursuant to the provisions of this constitution, shall be held on the Tuesday succeeding the first Monday of November, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, and on the Tuesday succeeding the first Monday of November of every second year thereafter.

cSec. 35. The legislature shall not establish a state paper.

Sec. 36. The legislature shall provide for the speedy publication of all statute laws of a public nature, and of such judicial decisions as it may deem expedient. All laws and judicial decisions shall be free for publication by any person.

Edition: current; Page: [1950]

Sec. 37. The legislature may declare the cases in which any office shall be deemed vacant, and also the manner of filling the vacancy, where no provision is made for that purpose in this constitution.

Sec. 38. The legislature may confer upon organized townships, incorporated cities and villages, and upon the board of supervisors of the several counties, such powers of a local, legislative and administrative character as they may deem proper.

Sec. 39. The legislature shall pass no law to prevent any person from worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of his own conscience, or to compel any person to attend, erect, or support any place of religious worship, or to pay tithes, taxes, or other rates for the support of any minister of the gospel or teacher of religion.

Sec. 40. No money shall be appropriated or drawn from the treasury for the benefit of any religious sect or society, theological or religious seminary, nor shall property belonging to the state be appropriated for any such purposes.

Sec. 41. The legislature shall not diminish or enlarge the civil or political rights, privileges and capacities of any person on account of his opinion or belief concerning matters of religion.

Sec. 42. No law shall ever be passed to restrain or abridge the liberty of speech or of the press; but every person may freely speak, write and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of such right.

Sec. 43. The legislature shall pass no bill of attainder, ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts.

Sec. 44. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus remains and shall not be suspended by the legislature, except in case of rebellion or invasion the public safety require it.

Sec. 45. The assent of two-thirds of the members elected to each house of the legislature shall be requisite to every bill appropriating the public money or property for local or private purposes.

Sec. 46. The legislature may authorize a trial by a jury of a less number than twelve men.

aSec. 47. The legislature may, by law, provide for the indeterminate sentences so called, as a punishment for crime, on conviction thereof, and for the detention and release of persons imprisoned or detained on said sentences.

Sec. 48. The style of the laws shall be, “The People of the State of Michigan enact.”

bSec. 49. The legislature may provide for the laying out, construction, improvement and maintenance of highways, bridges and culverts by counties and townships, and may authorize counties to take charge and control of any highways within their limits for such purposes: and may modify, change or abolish the powers and duties of township commissioners and overseers of highways. But the tax raised in any one year shall not exceed two dollars upon each one thousand Edition: current; Page: [1951] dollars valuation, according to the assessment roll of the county for the preceding year. The legislature may also prescribe the powers and duties of boards of supervisors in relation to highways, bridges and culverts, and may provide for one or more county road commissioners, to be elected by the people, or appointed, with such powers and duties as may be prescribed by law.

No county shall incur any indebtedness for any purposes in excess of three per cent of the valuation, according to the last assessment roll, and no such indebtedness beyond one-half of one per cent of such valuation shall be incurred, unless authorized by a majority of the electors of said county voting thereon: Provided, That any county road system provided by law shall not go into operation in any county until the electors of said county, by a majority vote, have declared in favor of adopting the county road system.

Article V: EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The executive power is vested in a governor who shall hold his office for two years. A lieutenant governor shall be chosen for the same term.

Sec. 2. No person shall be eligible to the office of governor or lieutenant governor, who has not been five years a citizen of the United States and a resident of this state two years next preceding his election; nor shall any person be eligible to either office who has not attained the age of thirty years.

Sec. 3. The governor and lieutenant governor shall be elected at the times and places of choosing the members of the legislature. The person having the highest number of votes for governor or lieutenant governor shall be elected. In case two or more persons shall have an equal and the highest number of votes for governor or lieutenant governor, the legislature shall, by joint vote, choose one of such persons.

Sec. 4. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the military and naval forces, and may call out such forces to execute the laws, to suppress insurrections and to repel invasions.

Sec. 5. He shall transact all necessary business with officers of government, and may require information in writing from the officers of the executive department upon any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 6. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.

Sec. 7. He may convene the legislature on extraordinary occasions.

Sec. 8. He shall give to the legislature, and at the close of his official term, to the next legislature, information by message of the condition of the state, and recommend such measures to them as he shall deem expedient.

Sec. 9. He may convene the legislature at some other place when the seat of government becomes dangerous from disease or a common enemy.

Sec. 10. He shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as occur in the senate or house of representatives.

Edition: current; Page: [1952]

Sec. 11. He may grant reprieves, commutations and pardons after convictions, for all offenses except treason and cases of impeachment, upon such conditions, and with such restrictions and limitations, as he may think proper, subject to regulations provided by law, relative to the manner of applying for pardons. Upon conviction for treason, he may suspend the execution of the sentence until the case shall be reported to the legislature at its next session, when the legislature shall either pardon or commute the sentence, direct the execution of the sentence, or grant a further reprieve. He shall communicate to the legislature at each session information of each case of reprieve, commutation or pardon granted, and the reasons therefor.

Sec. 12. In case of the impeachment of the governor, his removal from office, death, inability, resignation, or absence from the state the powers and duties of the office shall devolve upon the lieutenant governor, for the residue of the term, or until the disability ceases. When the governor shall be out of the state in time of war, at the head of a military force thereof, he shall continue commander-in-chief of all the military force of the state.

Sec. 13. During a vacancy in the office of governor, if the lieutenant governor die, resign, or be impeached, displaced, be incapable of performing the duties of his office, or absent from the state, the president pro tempore of the senate shall act as governor until the vacancy be filled or the disability cease.

Sec. 14. The lieutenant governor shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate. In committee of the whole he may debate all questions; and when there is an equal division, he shall give the casting vote.

Sec. 15. No member of congress, nor any person holding office under the United States, or this state, shall execute the office of governor.

Sec. 16. No person elected governor or lieutenant governor shall be eligible to any office or appointment from the legislature, or either house thereof, during the time for which he was elected. All votes for either of them for any such office shall be void.

aSec. 17. The lieutenant [governor] and president of the senate pro tempore when performing the duties of governor, shall receive the same compensation as the governor.

Sec. 18. All official acts of the governor, his approval of the laws excepted, shall be authenticated by the great seal of the state, which shall be kept by the secretary of state.

Sec. 19. All commissions issued to persons holding office under the provisions of this constitution shall be in the name and by the authority of the people of the State of Michigan, sealed with the great seal of the state, signed by the governor, and countersigned by the secretary of state.

Edition: current; Page: [1953]

Article VI: JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The judicial power is vested in one supreme court, in circuit courts, in probate courts, and in justices of the peace. Municipal courts of civil and criminal jurisdicton may be establshed by the legislature in cities.

bSec. 2. For the term of six years and thereafter, until the legislature otherwise provide, the judges of the several circuit courts shall be judges of the supreme court, four of whom shall constitute a quorum. A concurrence of three shall be necessary to a final decision. After six years the legislature may provide by law for the organization of a supreme court, with the jurisdiction and powers prescribed in this constitution to consist of one chief justice and three associate justices, to be chosen by the electors of the state. Such supreme court, when so organized, shall not be changed or discontinued by the legislature for eight years thereafter. The judges thereof shall be so classified that but one of them shall go out of office at the same time. The term of office shall be eight years.

Sec. 3. The supreme court shall have a general superintending control over all inferior courts, and shall have power to issue writs of error, habeas corpus, mandamus, quo warranto, procedendo, and other original and remedial writs, and to hear and determine the same. In all other cases it shall have appellate jurisdiction only.

Sec. 4. Four terms of the supreme court shall be held annually at such times and places as may be designated by law.

Sec. 5. The supreme court shall, by general rules, establish, modify, and amend the practice in such court and in the circuit courts, and simplify the same. The legislature shall, as far as practicable, abolish distinctions between law and equity proceedings. The office of master in chancery is prohibited.

aSec. 6. The state shall be divied into judicial circuits, in each of which the electors thereof shall elect one circuit judge, who shall hold his office for the term of six years, and until his successor is elected and qualified. The legislature may provide for the election of more than one circuit judge in the judicial circuit in which the city of Detroit is or may be situated, and in the judicial circuit in which the county of Saginaw is or may be situated, and in the judicial circuit in which the county of Kent is or may be situated, and in the judicial circuit in which the county of St. Clair is or may be situated. And the circuit judge or judges of such circuits, in addition to the salary provided by the constitution, shall receive from their respective counties such additional salary as may from time to time be fixed and determined by the board of supervisors of said county. And the board of supervisors of each county in the upper peninsula, and in the counties of Bay and Washtenaw and the county of Genesee, in the lower peninsula, is hereby authorized and empowered to give and to pay to the circuit judge of the judicial circuit to which said county is attached, such additional salary or compensation as may from time to time be fixed and determined by such board of supervisors.

Edition: current; Page: [1954]

Sec. 7. The legislature may alter the limits of circuits or increase the number of the same. No alteration or increase shall have the effect to remove a judge from office. In every additional circuit established the judge shall be elected by the electors of such circuit and his term of office shall continue, as provided in this constitution for judges of the circuit court.

aSec. 8. The circuit court shall have original jurisdiction in all matters civil and criminal not excepted in this constitution, and not prohibited by law, and appellate jurisdiction from all inferior courts and tribunals and a supervisory control of the same. They shall also have power to issue writs of habeas corpus, mandamus, injunction, quo warranto, certiorari, and other writs necessary to carry into effect their orders, judgments and decrees, and give them general control over inferior courts and tribunals within their respective jurisdictions, and in all such other cases and matters as the supreme court shall by rule prescribe.

Sec. 9. Each of the judges of the circuit courts shall receive a salary, payable quarterly. They shall be ineligible to any other than a judicial office during the term for which they are elected, and for one year thereafter. All votes for any person elected such judge for any office other than judicial, given either by the legislature or the people, shall be void.

Sec. 10. The supreme court may appoint a reporter of its decisions. The decisions of the supreme court shall be in writing and signed by the judges concurring therein. Any judge dissenting therefrom shall give the reasons of such dissent in writing under his signature. All such opinions shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the supreme court. The judges of the circuit court within their respective jurisdictions may fill vacancies in the office of county clerk and of prosecuting attorney; but no judge of the supreme court or circuit court shall exercise any other power of appointment to public office.

Sec. 11. A circuit court shall be held at least twice in each year in every county organized for judicial purposes, and four times in each year in counties containing ten thousand inhabitants. Judges of the circuit court may hold courts for each other, and shall do so when required by law.

bSec. 12. The clerk of each county organized for judicial purposes shall be the clerk of the circuit court of such county. The supreme court shall have power to appoint a clerk for such supreme court.

Sec. 13. In each of the counties organized for judicial purposes there shall be a court of probate. The judge of such court shall be elected by the electors of the county in which he resides, and shall hold his office for four years, and until his successor is elected and qualified. The jurisdiction, powers and duties of such courts shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 14. When a vacancy occurs in the office of judge of the supreme, circuit or probate court, it shall be filled by appointment of the governor, which shall continue until a successor is elected and Edition: current; Page: [1955] qualified. When elected, such successor shall hold his office the residue of the unexpired term.

Sec. 15. The supreme court, the circuit and probate courts of each county shall be courts of record, and shall each have a common seal.

Sec. 16. The legislature may provide by law for the election of one or more persons in each organized county, who may be vested with judicial powers not exceeding those of a judge of the circuit court at chambers.

Sec. 17. There shall be not exceeding four justices of the peace in each organized township. They shall be elected by the electors of the townships, and shall hold their offices for four years and until their successors are elected and qualified. At the first election in any township they shall be classified as shall be prescribed by law. A justice elected to fill a vacancy shall hold his office for the residue of the unexpired term. The legislature may increase the number of justices in cities.

Sec. 18. In civil cases, justices of the peace shall have exclusive jurisdiction to the amount of one hundred dollars, and concurrent jurisdiction to the amount of three hundred dollars, which may be increased to five hundred dollars, with such exceptions and restrictions as may be provided by law. They shall also have such criminal jurisdiction and perform such duties as shall be prescribed by the legislature.

Sec. 19. Judges of the supreme court, circuit judges and justices of the peace shall be conservators of the peace within their respective jurisdiction.

Sec. 20. The first election of judges of the circuit courts shall be held on the first Monday in April, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one, and every sixth year thereafter. Whenever an additional circuit is created, provision shall be made to hold the subsequent election of such additional judge at the regular elections herein provided.

Sec. 21. The first election of judges of the probate courts shall be held on the Tuesday succeeding the first Monday of November, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, and every fourth year thereafter.

Sec. 22. Whenever a judge shall remove beyond the limits of the jurisdiction for which he was elected, or a justice of the peace from the township in which he was elected, or by a change in the boundaries of such township shall be placed without the same, they shall be deemed to have vacated their respective offices.

Sec. 23. The legislature may establish courts of conciliation with such powers and duties as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 24. Any suitor in any court of this state shall have the right to prosecute or defend his suit, either in his own proper person, or boy an attorney or agent of his choice.

Sec. 25. In all prosecutions for libels the truth may be given in evidence to the jury; and if it shall appear to the jury that the matter charged as libelous is true and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted. The jury shall have the right to determine the law and the fact.

Sec. 26. The person, houses, papers and possessions of every person shall be secure from unreasonable searches and seizures. No warrant to search any place or to seize any person or things shall issue without Edition: current; Page: [1956] describing them, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.

Sec. 27. The right of trial by jury shall remain but shall be deemed to be waived in all civil cases unless demanded by one of the parties in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 28. In every criminal prosecution the accused shall have the right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury, which may consist of less than twelve men in all courts not of record; to be informed of the nature of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and have the assistance of counsel for his defense.

Sec. 29. No person after acquittal upon the merits shall be tried for the same offense. All persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for murder and treason when the proof is evident or the presumption great.

Sec. 30. Treason against the state shall consist only in levying war against or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless upon the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Sec. 31. Excessive bail shall not be required; excessive fines shall not be imposed; cruel or unusual punishment shall not be inflicted, nor shall witnesses be unreasonably detained.

Sec. 32. No person shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property, without due process of law.

Sec. 33. No person shall be imprisoned for debt arising out of, or founded on a contract, express or implied, except in cases of fraud or breach of trust, or of moneys collected by public officers, or in any professional employment. No person shall be imprisoned for a militia fine in time of peace.

Sec. 34. No person shall be rendered incompetent to be a witness on account of his opinions on matters of religious belief.

Sec. 35. The style of all process shall be, “In the name of the People of the State of Michigan.”

Article VII: ELECTIONS

aSection 1. In all elections, every male inhabitant of this state, being a citizen of the United States, every male inhabitant residing in this state on the twenty-fourth day of June, eighteen hundred thirty-five, every male inhabitant residing in this state on the first day of January, eighteen hundred fifty, every male inhabitant of foreign birth who, having resided in the state two years and six months prior to the eighth day of November, eighteen hundred ninety-four, and having declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States two years and six months prior to said last named day, and every civilized male inhabitant of Indian descent, a native of the United States and not a member of any tribe, shall be an elector and entitled to vote; but no one shall be an elector or entitled to vote at any election unless he shall be above the age of twenty-one years, and has Edition: current; Page: [1957] resided in this state six months, and in the township or ward in which he offers to vote twenty days next preceding such election: Provided, That in time of war, insurrection or rebellion, no qualified elector in the actual military service of the United States, or of this state, or in the army or navy thereof, shall be deprived of his vote by reason of his absence from the township, ward or state in which he resides, and the legislature shall have the power, and shall provide the manner in which, and the time and place at which such absent electors may vote, and for the canvass and return of their votes to the township or ward election district in which they respectively reside or otherwise.

Sec. 2. All votes shall be given by ballot, except for such township officers as may be authorized by law to be otherwise chosen.

Sec. 3. Every elector, in all cases, except treason, felony or breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during his attendance at election, and in going to and returning from the same.

Sec. 4. No elector shall be obliged to do militia duty on the day of election, except in time of war or public danger, or attend court as a suitor or witness.

aSec. 5. No elector shall be deemed to have gained or lost a residence by reason of his being employed in the service of the United States or of this state; nor while engaged in the navigation of the waters of this state or of the United States; or of the high seas; nor while a student of any seminary of learning; nor while kept at any almshouse or other asylum at public expense; nor while confined in any public prison, except that honorably discharged soldiers, sailors and marines who have served in the military or naval forces of the United States or of this state, and who reside in soldiers’ homes established by this state, may acquire a residence where such home is located.

Sec. 6. Laws may be passed to preserve the purity of elections and guard against abuses of the elective franchise.

Sec. 7. No soldier, seaman or marine, in the army or navy of the United States, shall be deemed a resident of this state in consequence of being stationed in any military or naval place within the same.

Sec. 8. Any inhabitant who may hereafter be engaged in a duel, either as principal or accessory before the fact, shall be disqualified from holding any office under the constitution and laws of this state, and shall not be permitted to vote at any election.

Article VIII: STATE OFFICERS

Section 1. There shall be elected at each general biennial election a secretary of state, a superintendent of public instruction, a state treasurer, a commissioner of the land office, an auditor general, and an attorney general for the term of two years. They shall keep their offices at the seat of government and shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 2. Their term of office shall commence on the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-three, and of every second year thereafter.

Edition: current; Page: [1958]

Sec. 3. Whenever a vacancy shall occur in any of the state offices, the governor shall fill the same by appointment, by and with the advice and consent of the senate if in session.

Sec. 4. The secretary of state, state treasurer, and commissioner of the state land office shall constitute a board of state auditors to examine and adjust all claims against the state, not otherwise provided for by general law. They shall constitute a board of state canvassers, to determine the result of all elections for governor, lieutenant governor and state officers, and of such other officers as shall by law be referred to them.

Sec. 5. In case two or more persons have an equal and the highest number of votes for any office, as canvassed by the board of state canvassers, the legislature in joint convention shall choose one of said persons to fill such office. When the determination of the board of state canvassers is contested, the legislature in joint convention shall decide which person is elected.

Article IX: SALARIES

aSection 1. The governor shall receive an annual salary of four thousand dollars; the judges of the circuit court shall each receive an annual salary of two thousand five hundred dollars; the state treasurer shall receive an annual salary of one thousand dollars; the superintendent of public instruction shall receive an annual salary of one thousand dollars; the secretary of state shall receive an annual salary of eight hundred dollars; the commissioner of the land office shall receive an annual salary of eight hundred dollars; the attorney general shall receive an annual salary of eight hundred dollars. They shall receive no fees or perquisites whatever for the performance of any duties connected with their office. It shall not be competent for the legislature to increase the salaries herein provided.

Article X: COUNTIES

Section 1. Each organized county shall be a body corporate, with such powers and immunities as shall be established by law. All suits and proceedings by or against a county shall be in the name thereof.

Sec. 2. No organized county shall ever be reduced by the organization of new counties to less than sixteen townships as surveyed by the United States, unless in pursuance of law a majority of electors residing in each county to be affected thereby shall so decide. The legislature may organize any city into a separate county, when it has attained a population of twenty thousand inhabitants, without reference to geographical extent, when a majority of the electors of a county in which such city may be situated, voting thereon, shall be in favor of a separate organization.

Edition: current; Page: [1959]

Sec. 3. In each organized county there shall be a sheriff, a county clerk, a county treasurer, a register of deeds and a prosecuting attorney, chosen by the electors thereof, once in two years, and as often as vacancies shall happen, whose duties and powers shall be prescribed by law. The board of supervisors in any county may unite the offices of county clerk and register of deeds in one office, or disconnect the same.

Sec. 4. The sheriff, county clerk, county treasurer, judge of probate and register of deeds shall hold their offices at the county seat.

Sec. 5. The sheriff shall hold no other office, and shall be incapable of holding the office of sheriff longer than four in any period of six years. He may be required by law to renew his security from time to time, and in default of giving such security, his office shall be deemed vacant. The county shall never be responsible for his acts.

Sec. 6. A board of supervisors, consisting of one from each organized township, shall be established in each county, with such powers as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 7. Cities shall have such representation in the board of supervisors of the counties in which they are situated as the legislature may direct.

Sec. 8. No county seat once established shall be removed until the place to which it is proposed to be removed shall be designated by two-thirds of the board of supervisors of the county, and a majority of the electors voting thereon shall have voted in favor of the proposed location, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 9. The board of supervisors of any county may borrow or raise by tax one thousand dollars for constructing or repairing public buildings, highways or bridges; but no greater sum shall be borrowed or raised by tax for such purpose in any one year, unless authorized by a majority of the electors of such county voting thereon.

aSec. 10. The board of supervisors, or, in the counties of Saginaw, Jackson, Washtenaw, Kent, Wayne and Genesee, the board of county auditors shall have the exclusive power to fix the compensation for all services rendered for, and to adjust all claims against, their respective counties, and the sum so fixed and defined shall be subject to no appeal.

Sec. 11. The board of supervisors of each organized county may provide for laying out highways, constructing bridges, and organizing townships, under such restrictions and limitations as shall be prescribed by law.

Article XI: TOWNSHIPS

Section 1. There shall be elected annually, on the first Monday of April, in each organized township, one supervisor, one township clerk, who shall be ex officio school inspector, one commissioner of highways, one township treasurer, one school inspector, not exceeding four constables, and one overseer of highways for each highway district, whose powers and duties shall be prescribed by law.

Edition: current; Page: [1960]

Sec. 2. Each organized township shall be a body corporate, with such powers and immunities as shall be prescribed by law. All suits and proceedings by or against a township shall be in the name thereof.

Article XII: IMPEACHMENTS AND REMOVALS FROM OFFICE

Section 1. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeaching civil officers for corrupt conduct in office, or for crimes or misdemeanors; but a majority of the members elected shall be necessary to direct an impeachment.

Sec. 2. Every impeachment shall be tried by the senate. When the governor or lieutenant governor is tried, the chief justice of the supreme court shall preside. When an impeachment is directed, the senate shall take an oath or affirmation truly and impartially to try and determine the same according to the evidence. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members elected. Judgment in case of impeachment shall not extend further than removal from office, but the party convicted shall be liable to punishment according to law.

Sec. 3. When an impeachment is directed, the house of representatives shall elect from their own body three members, whose duty it shall be to prosecute such impeachment. No impeachment shall be tried until the final adjournment of the legislature, when the senate shall proceed to try the same.

Sec. 4. No judicial officer shall exercise his office after an impeachment is directed until he is acquitted.

Sec. 5. The governor may make a provisional appointment to fill a vacancy occasioned by the suspension of an officer, until he shall be acquitted or until after the election and qualification of a successor.

Sec. 6. For reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient ground for the impeachment of a judge, the governor shall remove him on a concurrent resolution of two-thirds of the members elected to each house of the legislature; but the cause for which such removal is required shall be stated at length in such resolution.

Sec. 7. The legislature shall provide by law for the removal of any officer elected by a county, township or school district, in such manner and for such cause as to them shall seem just and proper.

aSec. 8. The governor shall have power and it shall be his duty, except at such time as the legislature may be in session, to examine into the condition and administration of any public office and the acts of any public officer, elective or appointed, to remove from office for gross neglect of duty or for corrupt conduct in office, or any other misfeasance or malfeasance therein, either of the following state officers, to wit: The attorney general, state treasurer, commissioner of the land office, secretary of state, auditor general, superintendent of public instruction or members of the state board of education, or any other officers of the state except legislative and judicial, elective or appointed, and to appoint a successor for the remainder of their respective unexpired term of office, and report the causes of such removal to the legislature at its next session.

Edition: current; Page: [1961]

Article XIII: EDUCATION

Section 1. The superintendent of public instruction shall have the general supervision of public instruction, and his duties shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 2. The proceeds from the sales of all lands that have been or hereafter may be granted by the United States to the state for educational purposes, and the proceeds of all lands or other property given by individuals or appropriated by the state for like purposes, shall be and remain a perpetual fund, the interest and income of which, together with the rents of all such lands as may remain unsold, shall be inviolably appropriated and annually applied to the specific objects of the original gift, grant or appropriation.

Sec. 3. All lands the titles to which shall fail from a defect of heirs, shall escheat to the state, and the interest on the clear proceeds from the sales thereof shall be appropriated exclusively to the support of primary schools.

Sec. 4. The legislature shall, within five years from the adoption of this constitution, provide for and establish a system of primary schools, whereby a school shall be kept without charge for tuition at least three months in each year in every school district in the state, and all instruction in said school shall be conducted in the English language.

Sec. 5. A school shall be maintained in each school district at least three months in each year. Any school district neglecting to maintain such school shall be deprived, for the ensuing year, of its proportion of the income of the primary school fund and of all funds arising from taxes for the support of schools.

aSec. 6. There shall be elected in the year eighteen hundred and sixty-three, at the time of the election of a justice of the supreme court, eight regents of the university, two of whom shall hold their office for two years, two for four years, two for six years, and two for eight years. They shall enter upon the duties of their office on the first of January next succeeding their election. At every regular election of a justice of the supreme court thereafter there shall be elected two regents whose term of office shall be eight years. When a vacancy shall occur in the office of regent, it shall be filled by appointment of the governor. The regents thus elected shall constitute the board of regents of the university of Michigan.

Sec. 7. The regents of the university and their successors in office shall continue to constitute the body corporate, known by the name and title of “The Regents of the University of Michigan.”

Sec. 8. The regents of the university shall, at their first annual meeting, or as soon thereafter as may be, elect a president of the university, who shall be ex officio a member of their board, with the privilege of speaking but not of voting. He shall preside at the meetings of the regents and be the principal executive officer of the university. The board of regents shall have the general supervision of the university, and the direction and control of all expenditures from the university interest fund.

Edition: current; Page: [1962]

Sec. 9. There shall be elected at the general election in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two three members of a state board of education; one for two years, one for four years, and one for six years; and at each succeeding biennial election there shall be elected one member of such board, who shall hold his office for six years. The superintendent of public instruction shall be ex officio a member and secretary of such board. The board shall have the general supervision of the state normal school, and their duties shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 10. Institutions for the benefit of those inhabitants who are deaf, dumb, blind, or insane shall always be fostered and supported.

Sec. 11. The legislature shall encourage the promotion of intellectual, scientific and agricultural improvements; and shall, as soon as practicable, provide for the establishment of an agricultural school. The legislature may appropriate the twenty-two sections of salt spring lands now unappropriated, or the money arising from the sale of the same, where such lands have been already sold, and any land which may hereafter be granted or appropriated for such purpose for the support and maintenance of such school, and may make the same a branch of the university, for instruction in agriculture and the natural sciences connected therewith, and place the same under the supervision of the regents of the university.

aSec. 12. The legislature shall also provide for the establishment of at least one library in each township and city, and all fines assessed and collected in the several counties and townships for any breach of the penal laws shall be exclusively applied to the support of such libraries, unless otherwise ordered by the township board of any township or the board of education of any city: Provided, That in no case shall such fines be used for other than library or school purposes.

Article XIV: FINANCE AND TAXATION

Section 1. All specific state taxes, except those received from the mining companies of the upper peninsula, shall be applied in paying the interest upon the primary school, university and other educational funds and the interest and principal of the state debt in the order herein recited, until the extinguishment of the state debt, other than the amounts due to educational funds, when such specific taxes shall be added to, and constitute a part of the primary school interest fund. The legislature shall provide for an annual tax, sufficient with other resources, to pay the estimated expenses of the state government, the interest of the state debt and such deficiency as may occur in the resources.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall provide by law a sinking fund of at least twenty thousand dollars a year, to commence in eighteen hundred and fifty-two, with compound interest at the rate of six per cent per annum and an annual increase of at least five per cent to be applied solely to the payment and extinguishment of the principal of the state debt, other than the amounts due to educational funds, Edition: current; Page: [1963] and shall be continued until the extinguishment thereof. The unfunded debt shall not be funded or redeemed at a value exceeding that established by law in one thousand eight hundred and forty-eight.

Sec. 3. The state may contract debts to meet deficits in revenue. Such debts shall not in the aggregate at any one time exceed fifty thousand dollars. The moneys so raised shall be applied to the purposes for which they were obtained, or to the payment of debts so contracted.

Sec. 4. The state may contract debts to repel invasion, suppress insurrection, or defend the state in time of war. The money arising from the contracting of such debts shall be applied to the purposes for which it was raised, or to repay such debts.

Sec. 5. No money shall be paid out of the treasury except in pursuance of appropriations made by law.

Sec. 6. The credit of the state shall not be granted to, or in aid of, any person, association or corporation.

Sec. 7. No scrip, certificate, or other evidence of state indebtedness shall be issued, except for the redemption of stock previously issued, or for such debts as are expressly authorized in this constitution.

Sec. 8. The state shall not subscribe to, or be interested in, the stock of any company, association or corporation.

aSec. 9. The state shall not be a party to, nor interested in, any work or internal improvement, nor engaged in carrying on any such work, except in the improvement of or aiding in the improvement of the public wagon roads and in the expenditure of grants to the state of land or other property: Provided, however, That the legislature of the state, by appropriate legislation, may authorize the city of Grand Rapids to issue its bonds for the improvement of Grand river.

bSec. 10. The state may continue to collect all specific taxes accruing to the treasury under existing laws. The legislature may provide for the collection of specific taxes from corporations. The legislature may provide for the assessment of the property of corporations, at its true cash value by a state board of assessors and for the levying and collection of taxes thereon. All taxes hereafter levied on the property of such classes of corporations as are paying specific taxes under laws in force on November sixth, ad, nineteen hundred, shall be applied as provided for specific state taxes in section one of this article.

bSec. 11. The legislature shall provide a uniform rule of taxation, except on property paying specific taxes, and taxes shall be levied on such property as shall be prescribed by law: Provided, That the legislature shall provide an uniform rule of taxation for such property as shall be assessed by a state board of assessors, and the rate of taxation on such property shall be the rate which the state board of assessors shall ascertain and determine is the average rate levied upon other property upon which ad valorem taxes are assessed for state, county, township, school and municipal purposes.

Sec. 12. All assessments hereafter authorized shall be on property at its cash value.

Edition: current; Page: [1964]

aSec. 13. In the year one thousand nine hundred and one, and every fifth year thereafter, and at such other times as the legislature may direct, the legislature shall provide for an equalization of assessments by a state board, on all taxable property, except that taxed under laws passed pursuant to section 10 of this article.

Sec. 14. Every law which imposes, continues or revives a tax shall distinctly state the tax, and the objects to which it is to be applied; and it shall not be sufficient to refer to any other law to fix such tax or object.

Article XV: CORPORATIONS

bSection 1. Corporations may be formed under general laws, but shall not be created by special act except for municipal purposes. All laws passed pursuant to this section may be amended, altered or repealed. But the legislature may, by a vote of two-thirds of the members elected to each house, create a single bank with branches.

bSec. 2. No general banking law shall have effect until the same shall, after its passage, be submitted to a vote of the electors of the state at a general election and be approved by a majority of the votes cast thereon at such election.

cSec. 3. The officers and stockholders of every corporation or association for banking purposes, issuing bank notes or paper credits to circulate as money, shall be individually liable for all debts contracted during the term of their being officers or stockholders of such corporation or association, equally and ratably to the extent of their respective shares of stock in any such corporation or association.

bSec. 4. For all banks organized under general laws, the legislature shall provide for the registry of all bills or notes issued or put in circulation as money, and shall require security to the full amount of notes and bills so registered, in state or United States stocks bearing interest, which shall be deposited with the state treasurer for the redemption of such bills or notes in specie.

Sec. 5. In case of the insolvency of any bank or banking association, the billholders thereof shall be entitled to preference in payment over all other creditors of such bank or association.

Sec. 6. The legislature shall pass no law authorizing or sanctioning the suspension of specie payments by any person, association or corporation.

Sec. 7. The stockholders of all corporations and joint stock associations shall be individually liable for all labor performed for such corporation or association.

Sec. 8. The legislature shall pass no law altering or amending any act of incorporation heretofore granted, without the assent of two-thirds of the members elected to each house; nor shall any such act be renewed or extended. This restriction shall not apply to municipal corporations.

Edition: current; Page: [1965]

Sec. 9. The property of no person shall be taken by any corporation for public use, without compensation being first made or secured, in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

aSec. 10. No corporation except for municipal purposes or for the construction of railroads, plank roads and canals, shall be created for a longer time than thirty years; but the legislature may provide by general laws, applicable to any corporations, for one or more extensions of the term of such corporations while such term is running, not exceeding thirty years for each extension, on the consent of not less than a two-thirds majority of the capital of the corporation; and by like general laws for the corporate reorganization for a further period, not exceeding thirty years, of such corporations whose terms have expired by limitation, on the consent of not less than four-fifths of the capital: Provided, That in cases of corporations where there is no capital stock, the legislature may provide the manner in which such corporations may be reorganized.

Sec. 11. The term “corporations,” as used in the preceding sections of this article, shall be construed to include all associations and joint stock companies having any of the powers or privileges of corporations, not possessed by individuals or partnerships. All corporations shall have the right to sue and be subject to be sued in all courts in like cases as natural persons.

Sec. 12. No corporation shall hold any real estate, hereafter acquired, for a longer period than ten years, except such real estate as shall be actually occupied by such corporation in the exercise of its franchises.

Sec. 13. The legislature shall provide for the incorporation and organization of cities and villages, and shall restrict their powers of taxation, borrowing money, contracting debts, and loaning their credit.

Sec. 14. Judicial officers of cities and villages shall be elected and all other officers shall be elected or appointed at such time and in such manner as the legislature may direct.

Sec. 15. Private property shall not be taken for public improvements in cities and villages without the consent of the owner, unless the compensation therefor shall first be determined by a jury of freeholders and actually paid or secured in the manner provided by law.

Sec. 16. Previous notice of any application for an alteration of the charter of any corporation shall be given in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Article XVI: EXEMPTIONS

Section 1. The personal property of every resident of this state, to consist of such property only as shall be designated by law, shall be exempted to the amount of not less than five hundred dollars from sale on execution or other final process of any court, issued for the collection of any debt contracted after the adoption of this constitution.

Edition: current; Page: [1966]

Sec. 2. Every homestead of not exceeding forty acres of land, and the dwelling house thereon, and the appurtenances to be selected by the owner thereof, and not included in any town plat, city or village; or instead thereof, at the option of the owner, any lot in any city, village, or recorded town plat, or such parts of lots as shall be equal thereto, and the dwelling house thereon, and its appurtenances, owned and occupied by any resident of the state, not exceeding in value fifteen hundred dollars, shall be exempt from forced sale on execution, or any other final process from a court, for any debt contracted after the adoption of this constitution. Such exemption shall not extend to any mortgage thereon, lawfully obtained; but such mortgage or other alienation of such land by the owner thereof, if a married man, shall not be valid without the signature of the wife to the same.

Sec. 3. The homestead of a family after the death of the owner thereof, shall be exempt from the payment of his debts contracted after the adoption of this constitution, in all cases during the minority of his children.

Sec. 4. If the owner of a homestead die, leaving a widow, but no children, the same shall be exempt, and the rents and profits thereof shall accrue to her benefit during the time of her widowhood, unless she be the owner of a homestead in her own right.

Sec. 5. The real and personal estate of every female, acquired before marriage, and all property to which she may afterwards become entitled, by gift, grant, inheritance or devise, shall be and remain the estate and property of such female, and shall not be liable for the debts, obligations or engagements of her husband, and may be devised or bequeathed by her as if she were unmarried.

Article XVII: MILITIA

aSection 1. The militia shall be composed of all able bodied male citizens, between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years, except such as are exempted by the laws of the United States or of this state; but all such citizens, of any religious denomination whatever, who, from scruples of conscience, may be averse to bearing arms, shall be excused therefrom upon such conditions as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall provide by law for organizing, equipping and disciplining the militia, in such manner as they shall deem expedient, not incompatible with the laws of the United States.

Sec. 3. Officers of the militia shall be elected or appointed and be commissioned in such manner as may be provided by law.

Article XVIII: MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Section 1. Members of the legislature, and all officers, executive and judicial, except such officers as may by law be exempted, shall, before they enter on the duties of their respective offices, take and subscribe the following oath or affirmation: “I do solemnly swear Edition: current; Page: [1967] (or affirm) that I will support the constitution of the United States and the constitution of this state, and that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office of ——— according to the best of my ability.” And no other oath, declaration or test shall be required as a qualification for any office or public trust.

aSec. 2. When private property is taken for the use or benefit of the public, the necessity for using such property and the just compensation to be made therefor, except when to be made by the state, shall be ascertained by a jury of twelve freeholders, residing in the vicinity of such property, or by not less than three commissioners, appointed by a court of record, as shall be prescribed by law: Provided, The foregoing provision shall in no case be construed to apply to the action of commissioners of highways in the official discharge of their duty as highway commissioners.

Sec. 3. No mechanical trade shall hereafter be taught to convicts in the state prison of this state, except the manufacture of those articles of which the chief supply for home consumption is imported from other states or counties.

Sec. 4. No navigable stream in this state shall be either bridged or dammed without authority from the board of supervisors of the proper county under the provisions of law. No such law shall prejudice the right of individuals to the free navigation of such streams or preclude the state from the further improvement of the navigation of such streams.

Sec. 5. An accurate statement of the receipts and expenditures of the public moneys shall be attached to, and published with the laws at every regular session of the legislature.

Sec. 6. The laws, public records, and the written judicial and legislative proceedings of the state shall be conducted, promulgated and preserved in the English language.

Sec. 7. Every person has a right to bear arms for the defense of himself and the state.

Sec. 8. The military shall in all cases, and at all times, be in strict subordination to the civil power.

Sec. 9. No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner or occupant, nor in time of war, except in a manner prescribed by law.

Sec. 10. The people have the right peaceably to assemble together to consult for the common good, to instruct their representatives, and to petition the legislature for redress of grievances.

Sec. 11. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, unless for the punishment of crime, shall ever be tolerated in this state.

Sec. 12. No lease or grant hereafter of agricultural land for a longer period than twelve years, reserving any rent or service of any kind, shall be valid.

Sec. 13. Aliens who are or who may hereafter become, bona fide residents of this state, shall enjoy the same rights in respect to the possession, enjoyment and inheritance of property, as native born citizens.

Sec. 14. The property of no person shall be taken for public use without just compensation therefor. Private roads may be opened Edition: current; Page: [1968] in the manner to be prescribed by law; but in every case the necessity of the road and the amount of all damages to be sustained by the opening thereof shall be first determined by a jury of free-holders; and such amount, together with the expenses of proceedings, shall be paid by the person or persons to be benefited.

Sec. 15. No general revision of the laws shall hereafter be made. When a reprint thereof becomes necessary, the legislature in joint convention shall appoint a suitable person to collect together such acts and parts of acts as are in force, and, without alteration, arrange them under appropriate heads and titles. The law so arranged shall be submitted to two commissioners appointed by the governor for examination, and if certified by them to be a correct compilation of all general laws in force, shall be printed in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Article XIX: UPPER PENINSULA

aSection 1. The counties of Mackinac, Chippewa, Delta, Marquette, Schoolcraft, Houghton and Ontonagon, and the islands and territory thereunto attached, the islands of Lake Superior, Huron, and Michigan, and in Green Bay and the Straits of Mackinac and the River Ste. Marie, shall constitute a separate judicial district, and be entitled to a district judge and district attorney.

bSec. 2. The district judge shall be elected by the electors of such district, and shall perform the same duties and possess the same powers as a circuit judge in his circuit, and shall hold his office for the same period.

cSec. 3. The district attorney shall be elected every two years by the electors of the district, shall perform the duties of prosecuting attorney throughout the entire district, and may issue warrants for the arrest of offenders in cases of felony, to be proceeded with as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 4. Such judicial district shall be entitled at all times to at least one senator, and until entitled to more by its population, it shall have three members of the house of representatives, to be apportioned among the several counties by the legislature.

Sec. 5. The legislature may provide for the payment of the district judge a salary not exceeding one thousand dollars a year, and of the district attorney not exceeding seven hundred dollars a year; and may allow extra compensation to the members of the legislature from such territory, not exceeding two dollars a day during any session.

dSec. 6. That elections for all district or county officers, state senators or representatives, within the boundaries defined in this article, shall take place on the Tuesday succeeding the first Monday of November in the respective years in which they may be required. The county canvass shall be held on the first Monday thereafter, and the district canvass on the third Monday of said November.

Edition: current; Page: [1969]

Sec. 7. One-half of the taxes received into the treasury from mining corporations in the upper peninsula, paying an annual state tax of one per cent shall be paid to the treasurers of the counties from which it is received, to be applied for township and county purposes, as provided by law. The legislature shall have power, after the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-five, to reduce the amount to be refunded.

Sec. 8. The legislature may change the location of the state prison from Jackson to the upper peninsula.

Sec. 9. The charters of the several mining corporations may be modified by the legislature, in regard to the term limited for subscribing to stock, and in relation to the quantity of land which a corporation shall hold; but the capital shall not be increased, nor the time for the existence of charters extended. No such corporation shall be permitted to purchase or hold any real estate, except such as shall be necessary for the exercise of its corporate franchises.

Article XIX-Aa: RAILROADS

Section 1. The legislature may, from time to time, pass laws establishing reasonable maximum rates of charges for the transportation of passengers and freight on different railroads in this state, and shall prohibit running contracts between such railroad companies whereby discrimination is made in favor of either of such companies as against other companies owning connecting or intersecting lines of railroad.

Sec. 2. No railroad corporation shall consolidate its stock, property, or franchises with any other railroad corporation owning a parallel or competing line; and in no case shall any consolidation take place except upon public notice given of at least sixty days to all stockholders, in such manner as shall be provided by law.

Article XX: AMENDMENT AND REVISION OF THE CONSTITUTION

Section 1.b Any amendment or amendments to this constitution may be proposed in the senate or house of representatives. If the same shall be agreed to by two-thirds of the members elected to each house, such amendment or amendments shall be entered on the journals respectively, with the yeas and nays taken thereon, and the same shall be submitted to the electors at the next spring or autumn election thereafter, as the legislature shall direct; and if a majority of electors qualified to vote for members of the legislatiure voting thereon shall ratify and approve such amendment or amendments, the same shall become part of the constitution.

cSec. 2. At the general election to be held in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty-six, and in each sixteenth year thereafter, Edition: current; Page: [1970] and also at such other times as the legislature may by law provide, the question of the general revision of the constitution shall be submitted to the electors qualified to vote for members of the legislature, and in case a majority of the electors so qualified, voting at such election, shall decide in favor of a convention for such purpose, the legislature, at the next session, shall provide by law for the election of such delegates to such convention. All the amendments shall take effect at the commencement of the year after their adoption.

SCHEDULE

That no inconvenience may arise from the changes in the constitution of this state, and in order to carry the same into complete operation, it is hereby declared that

Section 1. The common law and the statute laws now in force, not repugnant to this constitution, shall remain in force until they expire by their own limitations, or are altered or repealed by the legislature.

Sec. 2. All writs, actions, causes of action, prosecutions and rights of individuals, and of bodies corporate, and of the state, and all charters of incorporation, shall continue, and all indictments which shall have been found or which may hereafter be found, for any crime or offense committed before the adoption of this constitution, may be proceeded upon as if no change had taken place. The several courts, except as herein otherwise provided, shall continue with the like powers and jurisdiction, both at law and in equity, as if this constitution had not been adopted, and until the organization of the judicial department under this constitution.

Sec. 3. That all fines, penalties, forfeitures and escheats, accruing to the state of Michigan under the present constitution and laws, shall accrue to the use of the state under this constitution.

Sec. 4. That all recognizances, bonds, obligations, and all other instruments entered into or executed before the adoption of this constitution, to the people of the state of Michigan, to any state, county or township, or any public officer, or public body, or which may be entered into or executed, under existing laws, “to the people of the state of Michigan,” to any such officer or public body, before the complete organization of the departments of government under this constitution, shall remain binding and valid; and rights and liabilities upon the same shall continue and may be prosecuted as provided by law. And all crimes and misdemeanors and penal actions shall be tried, punished and prosecuted as though no change had taken place, until otherwise provided by law.

Sec. 5. A governor and lieutenant governor shall be chosen under the existing constitution and laws to serve after the expiration of the term of the present incumbent.

Sec. 6. All officers, civil and military, now holding any office or appointment, shall continue to hold their respective offices, unless removed by competent authority, until superseded under the laws now in force, or under this constitution.

Sec. 7. The members of the senate and house of representatives of the legislature of one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one shall continue in office under the provisions of law, until superseded by their successors, elected and qualified under this constitution.

Edition: current; Page: [1971]

Sec. 8. All county officers, unless removed by competent authority, shall continue to hold their respective offices until the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-three. The laws, now in force as to the election, qualification and duties of township officers, shall continue in force until the legislature shall, in conformity to the provisions of this constitution, provide for the holding of elections to fill such offices, and prescribe the duties of such officers, respectively.

Sec. 9. On the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, the terms of office of the judges of the supreme court, under existing laws, and of the judges of the county courts, and of the clerks of the supreme court, shall expire, on the said day.

Sec. 10. On the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, the jurisdiction of all suits and proceedings then pending in the present supreme court shall become vested in the supreme court established by this constitution, and shall be finally adjudicated by the court where the same may be pending. The jurisdiction of all suits and proceedings at law and equity then pending in the circuit courts and county courts for the several counties, shall become vested in the circuit courts of the said counties and district court for the upper peninsula.

Sec. 11. The probate courts, the courts of justices of the peace, and the police court, authorized by an act entitled “An act to establish a police court in the city of Detroit, approved April second, one thousand eight hundred and fifty,” shall continue to exercise the jurisdiction and powers now conferred upon them, respectively, until otherwise provided by law.

Sec. 12. The office of state printer shall be vested in the present incumbent until the expiration of the term for which he was elected under the law then in force; and all the provisions of the said law relating to his duties, rights, privileges and compensation shall remain unimpaired and inviolate until the expiration of his said term of office.

Sec. 13. It shall be the duty of the legislature at their first session to adapt the present laws to the provisions of this constitution as far as may be.

Sec. 14. The attorney general of the state is required to prepare and report to the legislature at the commencement of the next session such changes and modifications in existing laws as may be deemed necessary to adapt the same to this constitution, and as may be best calculated to carry into effect its provisions, and he shall receive no additional compensation therefor.

Sec. 15. Any territory attached to any county for judicial purposes, if not otherwise represented, shall be considered as forming part of such county, so far as regards elections for the purpose of representation.

Sec. 16. This constitution shall be submitted to the people for their adoption or rejection at the general election to be held on the first Tuesday of November, one thousand eight hundred and fifty; and there shall also be submitted for adoption or rejection at the same time the separate resolution in relation to the elective franchise; and it shall be the duty of the secretary of state and all other officers, required to give or publish any notice in regard to the said general Edition: current; Page: [1972] election, to give notice, as provided by law in case of an election of governor, that this constitution has been duly submitted to the electors at said election. Every newspaper within this state publishing in the month of September next this constitution as submitted shall receive, as compensation therefor, the sum of twenty-five dollars to be paid as the legislature shall direct.

Sec. 17. Any person entitled to vote for members of the legislature, by the constitution and laws now in force, shall at the said election be entitled to vote for the adoption or rejection of this constitution, and for or against the resolution separately submitted, at the places and in the manner provided by law for the election of members of the legislature.

Sec. 18. At the said general election a ballot box shall be kept by the several boards of inspectors thereof for receiving the votes cast for or against the adoption of this constitution; and on the ballots shall be written or printed, or partly written and partly printed, the words “Adoption of the Constitution—Yes,” or “Adoption of the Constitution—No.”

Sec. 19. The canvass of the votes cast for the adoption or rejection of this constitution, and the provision in relation to the elective franchise separately submitted, and the returns thereof shall be made by the proper canvassing officers, in the same manner as now provided by law for the canvass and return of the votes cast at any election for governor, as near as may be, and the return thereof shall be directed to the secretary of state. On the sixteenth day of December next, or within five days thereafter, the auditor general, state treasurer, and secretary of state shall meet at the capitol, and proceed, in presence of the governor, to examine and canvass the returns of the said votes, and proclamation shall forthwith be made by the governor of the result thereof. If it shall appear that a majority of the votes cast upon the question have thereon “Adoption of the Constitution—Yes,” this constitution shall be the supreme law of the state from and after the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one, except as is herein otherwise provided; but if a majority of the votes cast upon the question have thereon “Adoption of the Constitution—No,” the same shall be null and void. And in case of the adoption of this constitution, said officers shall immediately, or as soon thereafter as practicable, proceed to open the statements of votes returned from the several counties for judges of the supreme court and state officers under the act entitled “An act to amend the revised statutes and to provide for the election of certain officers by the people in pursuance to an amendment of the constitution,” approved February sixteenth, one thousand eight hundred and fifty, and shall ascertain, determine and certify the results of the election for said officers under said act, in the same manner as near as may be, as is now provided by law in regard to the election of representatives in congress. And the several judges and officers so ascertained to have been elected may be qualified and enter upon the duties of their respective offices, on the first Monday of January next or as soon thereafter as practicable.

Sec. 20. The salaries or compensation of all persons holding office under the present constitution shall continue to be the same as now provided by law, until superseded by their successors elected or appointed under this constitution; and it shall not be lawful hereafter Edition: current; Page: [1973] for the legislature to increase or diminish the compensation of any officer during the term for which he is elected or appointed.

Sec. 21. The legislature at their first session shall provide for the payment of all expenditures of the convention to revise the constitution and of the publication of the same as is provided in this article.

Sec. 22. Every county except Mackinaw and Chippewa entitled to a representative in the legislature, at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall continue to be so entitled under this constitution, and the county of Saginaw, with the territory that may be attached, shall be entitled to one representative; the county of Tuscola, and the territory that may be attached, one representative; the county of Sanilac, and the territory that may be attached, one representative; the counties of Midland and Arenac, with the territory that may be attached, one representative; the county of Montcalm, with the territory that may be attached thereto, one representative; and the counties of Newaygo and Oceana, with the territory that may be attached thereto, one representative; each county having a ratio of representation, and a fraction over, equal to a moiety of said ratio, shall be entitled to two representatives; and so on above that number, giving one additonal member for each additional ratio.

Sec. 23. The cases pending and undisposed of in the late court of chancery, at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall continue to be heard and determined by the judges of the supreme court. But the legislature shall at its session in one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one provide by law for the transfer of said causes that may remain undisposed of on the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, to the supreme or circuit court established by this constitution, or require that the same may be heard and determined by the circuit judges.

Sec. 24. The term of office of the governor and lieutenant governor shall commence on the first day of January next after their election.

Sec. 25. The territory described in the article entitled “Upper Peninsula,” shall be attached to and constitute a part of the third circuit for the election of a regent of the university.

Sec. 26. The legislature shall have authority after the expiration of the term of office of the district judge first elected for the “Upper Peninsula,” to abolish said office of district judge and district attorney or either of them.

Sec. 27. The legislature shall, at its session of one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one, apportion the representatives among the several counties and districts, and divide the state into senate districts pursuant to the provisions of this constitution.

Sec. 28. The terms of office of all state and county officers, of the circuit judges, members of the board of education, and members of the legislature shall begin on the first day of January next succeeding their election.

Sec. 29. The state, exclusive of the upper peninsula, shall be divided into eight judicial circuits, and the counties of Monroe, Lenawee and Hillsdale shall constitute the first circuit; the counties of Branch, St. Joseph, Cass and Berrien shall constitute the second circuit; the county of Wayne shall constitute the third circuit; the counties of Washtenaw, Jackson and Ingham shall constitute the Edition: current; Page: [1974] fourth circuit; the counties of Calhoun, Kalamazoo, Allegan, Eaton and Van Buren shall constitute the fifth circuit; the counties of St. Clair, Macomb, Oakland and Sanilac shall constitute the sixth circuit; the counties of Lapeer, Genesee, Saginaw, Shiawassee, Livingston, Tuscola, and Midland shall constitute the seventh circuit; and the counties of Barry, Kent, Ottawa, Ionia, Clinton and Montcalm shall constitute the eighth circuit.

Done in convention at the capitol of the state this fifteenth day of August in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fifty and of the independence of the United States the seventy-fifth.

D. Goodwin, President.

AMENDMENTS

SUMMARY OF VOTES BY WHICH ADOPTED OR REJECTED FROM 1850 TO 1905

(November, 1850)

An amendment to grant “equal suffrage to colored persons,” was submitted to the people, November, 1850, and rejected by the following vote: For, 12,840; against, 32,026.

(November, 1858)

The general banking law of the state was submitted to the people, November 2, 1858, and adopted. For, 41,006; against, 19,865.

(November, 1860)

“As to banking corporations” making officers and stockholders individually liable to the extent of their respective shares of stock, adopted as follows: For, 59,954; against, 15,477.

“As to legislative sessions,” fixing time and place of holding, and providing for adjournment; also, providing that no new bill shall be introduced after the first fifty days of the session shall have expired, and allowing extra compensation to members from the upper peninsula, not to exceed two dollars per day during the session. Adopted as follows: For, 53,152; against, 18,246.

“As to Sec. 2, Art. XVIII,” adding to said section the following: “Provided, The foregoing provision shall in no case be construed to apply to the action of commissioners of highways in the official discharge of their duty as highway commissioners.” Adopted. For, 62,936; against, 8,054.

(November, 1862)

“Relative to removals from office,” empowering the governor to inquire into the condition and administration of any public office, and acts of public officers (except legislative and judicial), to remove such officers in certain cases, appoint a successor, and report the causes of such removal to the next legislature. Adopted. For, 3,180; against, 1,273.

“As to banks,” providing that corporations shall be formed under general laws only, except for municipal purposes, but allowing the legislature by a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to create a single bank with branches; also that no general banking law shall Edition: current; Page: [1975] take effect until ratified by the people; also, for all banks organized under general laws, the legislature shall provide for the registry of all bills or notes issued as money, and requiring security to the full amount of such issue, in State or United States stocks, bearing interest, to be deposited with the state treasurer. Adopted. For, 5,067; against, 1,644.

“As to regents of the university,” providing for the election of a board of eight in 1863, their respective terms of office, when successors to be elected, etc. Adopted. For, 4,363; against, 1,901.

“As to elections in upper peninsula,” fixing the time for the election of certain state officers, to wit: all district or county officers, state senators or representatives, and the time of holding the county and district canvass. Adopted. For, 5,193; against, 1,440.

“As to amendments of the constitution,” providing that the question of the revision of the constitution be submitted to the electors at the general election in 1866, and in each sixteenth year thereafter, and also at such other times as the legislature may by law provide. Adopted. For, 4,375; against, 1,806.

(November, 1866)

“As to soldiers voting,” providing that, in time of war, insurrection or rebellion, no elector shall be deprived of his right to vote by reason of his service in the army or navy at such time, in this State or the United States. Adopted. For, 86,354; against, 13,094.

“For a revision of the constitution,” the people expressed their sanction for revision by the following vote: For, 79,505; against, 28,623.

(April, 1868)

“Proposition relative to annual or biennial sessions of the legislature to stand as section eight (8) of article five (5) of said constitution,” on which the votes were as follows: Annual sessions—“Yes,” 24,482; biennial sessions—“Yes,” 100,314.

“Proposed section relative to prohibition,” providing that ‘The legislature shall not pass any act authorizing the grant of licenses for the sale of ardent spirits or intoxicating liquors but shall by law prohibit the sale of the same as a beverage, on which the vote was as follows: Prohibition—“Yes,” 72,462; prohibition—“No,” 86,143.

(November, 1870)

“Relative to raising two thousand dollars for public buildings, highways, or bridges,” empowering the board of supervisors of any county to raise not to exceed the above named sum per annum for such purposes. Rejected. For, 39,180; against, 61,904.

“Relative to the salaries of state officers and judges of the circuit court.” The following were the proposed salaries: Governor, two thousand five hundred dollars; judges of the circuit court, secretary of state, state treasurer, auditor general, commissioner of the state land office, attorney general and superintenednt of public instruction, two thousand dollars each. Rejected. For, 36,109; against, 68,912.

“Impartial suffrage.” Under this head were three propositions: 1st. The apportionment of representatives. 2d. The qualification of Edition: current; Page: [1976] electors, by which the word “white” was stricken from the constitution. 3d. Of whom the militia shall be composed. Adopted. For, 54,105; against, 50,598.

“Of railroads.” There were three propositions under this head. 1st. Authorizing the legislature to regulate passenger and freight charges. Adopted. For, 78,602; against, 51,397. 2d. Prohibiting the consolidation of competing lines of railroad, except that at least sixty days’ notice be given publicly to all stockholders, as provided by law. Adopted. For, 76,912; against, 51,194. 3d. Authorizing the payment of bonds or obligations heretofore issued. Rejected. For, 50,078; against, 78,453.

(November, 1872)

“Providing for the payment of bonds issued and negotiated, and the purchase price thereof realized prior to May 27, 1870, by the counties, townships and municipalities issuing the same for, and in aid of any railroad company.” Rejected. For, 44,684; against, 70,893.

“Relative to the limits of judicial circuits, and the number thereof.” Rejected. For, 47,972; against, 65,848.

“Relative to the salaries of circuit judges,” fixing their salaries at two thousand five hundred dollars. Rejected. For, 57,326; against, 58,987.

(November, 1874)

Amendment submitted to the people, relating to woman suffrage. Rejected. For, 40,077; against, 135,957.

Revision of Constitution, prepared by the Constitutional Commission of 1873, appointed by the Governor by authority of joint resolution No. 19, laws of 1873, and approved and submitted by joint resolution No. 4, laws of 1874, (extra session). Rejected. For, 39,285; against, 124,034.

(November, 1876)

“Relative to license for the sale of intoxicating liquors.” Clause forbidding the grant of license stricken from the constitution by the following vote: For striking out, 60,639; against, 52,561.

“Relative to the salaries of judges of the circuit court,” proposing two thousand five hundred dollars per annum each. Rejected. For, 65,371; against, 65,966.

“As to the time of submitting to the people amendments to the constitution.” Amendment and revision may be submitted to the people at the spring or autumn election. Adopted. For, 52,306; against, 21,984.

(April, 1878)

“Relative to appointment of clerk of the supreme court.” To give power of appointment to court. Rejected. For, 30,313; against, 34,712.

“Relative to corporations.” Making stockholders individually liable to the full amount of their respective shares, for all labor done for or in behalf of such corporation. Rejected. For, 24,770; against, 42,064.

Edition: current; Page: [1977]

(April, 1880)

“Relative to the salary of the governor.” Fixing the salary at three thousand dollars per year. Rejected. For, 49,035; against, 91,753.

(November, 1880)

“Relative to a bridge or tunnel across the Detroit river.” Rejected. For, 37,340; against, 58,040.

(April, 1881)

“Relative to penal fines.” Empowering boards of education in cities, or township boards, to apply such fines to library or school purposes. Adopted. For, 51,475; against, 8,370.

“Relative to clerks of the circuit and supreme courts.” Authorizing the supreme court to appoint its own clerk. Adopted. For, 62,593; against, 6,640.

“Relative to circuit courts.” Providing for more than one judge in the circuit in which Detroit is or may be situated. Adopted. For, 53,840; against, 6,628.

(November, 1882)

“Relative to the salaries of the judges of the circuit courts.” Increasing such salaries. Adopted. For, 85,705; against, 55,638.

“Relative to the adjustment of claims against counties.” Providing for the establishment of boards of county auditors. Rejected. For, 23,814; against, 38,073.

“Revision.” The question of a general revision of the constitution was also submitted and was decided in the negative by the following vote: For, 20,937; against, 35,123.

(November, 1884)

“Relative to the salaries of circuit judges, upper peninsula, allowing increase.” Adopted. For, 35,345; against, 28,642.

“Relative to compensation of members of the legislature, and prohibiting acceptance by them of railroad passes.” Rejected. For, 31,693; against, 52,707.

(November, 1886)

“Relative to the board of auditors of Wayne county.” Rejected. For, 15,020; against, 20,755.

“Relative to the salaries of state officers.” Rejected. For, 40,445; against, 60,220.

(April, 1887)

“Relative to the liquor traffic.” Rejected. For, 178,636; against, 184,281.

“Relative to the salaries of state officers.” Rejected. For, 72,718; against, 124,838.

(November, 1888)

“Relative to circuit courts.” Adopted. For, 21,221; against, 19,382.

Edition: current; Page: [1978]

“A general banking law” was submitted to the people November, 1888, and adopted. For, 48,531; against, 20,300.

(April, 1889)

“Relative to circuit courts.” Adopted. For, 49,478; against, 19,834.

“Relative to duration of corporations.” Adopted. For, 35,269; against, 28,950.

“Relative to salary of governor,” making the salary four thousand dollars per annum. Adopted. For, 111,854; against, 72,494.

(November, 1890)

“The question of a general revision of the constitution” was submitted to the people and rejected. For, 16,431; against, 26,261.

(April, 1891)

“Salary of attorney general.” Adopted. For, 69,622; against, 68,335. Recanvassed June 1, 1894, by order of supreme court, with the following result: For, 69,248; against, 69,651.

(November, 1892)

“Convention for the purpose of a general revision of the constitution.” Rejected. For, 16,948; against, 16,245.

(April 3, 1893)

“Relative to salaries of state officers.” For, 64,422; against, 62,601. Recanvassed January 19, 1894, by order of the supreme court, with the following result: Rejected. For, 59,317; against, 70,772.

“Relative to works of internal improvement at Grand Rapids.” For, 70,597; against, 55,091. Recanvassed January 19, 1894, by order of the supreme court, with the following result: Adopted. For, 72,745; against, 52,476.

“Relative to extending jurisdiction of circuit courts in certain cases.” For, 60,219; against, 53,492. Recanvassed January 19, 1894, by order of the supreme court, with the following result: Adopted. For, 62,023; against, 48,797.

“Relative to creation of county and township boards of highway commissioners.” For, 68,486; against, 60,015. Recanvassed January 19, 1894, by order of the supreme court, with the following result: Adopted. For, 69,050; against 59,922.

(November 6, 1894)

“Authorizing inmates of soldiers’ homes to vote where such homes are situated.” Adopted. For, 127,758; against, 29,607.

“Relative to the qualifications of electors of this state, requiring foreign born electors to be citizens of the United States or to have declared their intention of becoming such two years and six months prior to the eighth day of November, 1894.” Adopted. For, 117,088 against, 31,537.

Edition: current; Page: [1979]

(April 1, 1895)

“Relative to the salaries of state officers.” Rejected. For, 50,065; against, 139,039.

“Relative to circuit courts.” Rejected. For, 60,567; against, 97,278.

(April 5, 1897)

“Relative to the salary of attorney general.” Rejected. For, 70,138; against, 90,973.

“Relative to board of county auditors for Kent county.” Rejected. For, 53,201; against, 57,793.

(November 8, 1898)

“Convention for the purpose of a general revision of the constitution.” Rejected. For, 162,123; against, 127,147.

(April 3, 1899)

“Relative to improvement and maintenance of highways.” Adopted. For, 130,416; against, 93,442.

“Relative to circuit courts.” Adopted. For, 108,197; against, 104,884.

“Relative to judicial department.” Rejected. For, 99,391; against, 102,269.

“Relative to state printing office.” Rejected. For, 105,711; against, 108,317.

(November 6, 1900)

“Relative to the taxation of corporations.” Adopted. For, 442,728; against, 54,757.

(April 1, 1901)

“Relative to salaries of members of the legislature.” Rejected. For, 112,883; against, 187,615.

“Relative to circuit courts.” Rejected. For, 110,855; against, 130,108.

(November 4, 1902)

“Relative to the publication of the general laws in newspapers.” Adopted. For, 155,837; against, 105,241.

“Relative to indeterminate sentences.” Adopted. For, 146,265; against, 78,338.

(April 6, 1903)

“Relative to circuit courts.” Adopted. For, 105,618; against, 83,048.

“Relative to board of county auditors in the counties of Saginaw, Jackson, Washtenaw and Kent.” Adopted. For, 108,889; against, 84,636.

(November 8, 1904)

“Convention for the purpose of a general revision of the constitution.” Rejected. For, 165,123; against, 120,018.

“Relative to limiting the time for the introduction of bills.” Adopted. For, 180,157; against, 98,657.

Edition: current; Page: [1980]

(April 3, 1905)

“Relative to public wagon roads.” Adopted. For, 205,750; against, 63,506.

“Relative to the board of county auditors for the county of Genesee.” Adopted. For, 94,860; against, 64,825.

“Relative to the compensation of circuit judge in the county of Genesee.” Adopted. For, 91,994; against, 63,590.

(April 2, 1906)

“Convention for a general revision of the constitution.” Adopted. For, 196,780; against, 127,189.

Note.—See Appendix for the text of the original constitution of Michigan of 1850.

Edition: current; Page: [1981]

MINNESOTAa

For organic acts issued before 1849 relating to the land now included within Minnesota see in this work:

Virginia Act of Cession, 1783 (Illinois, p. 955).
Deed of Cession from Virginia, 1784 (Illinois, p. 957).
Northwest Territorial Government, 1787 (Illinois, p. 957).
Virginia Act of Ratification, 1788 (Illinois, p. 963).
Northwest Territorial Government, 1789 (Illinois, p. 963).
Territorial Government of Indiana, 1800 (Illinois, p. 964).
Treaty Ceding Louisiana, 1803 (Louisiana, p. 1359).
District of Louisiana, 1804 (Louisiana, p. 1364).
Territory of Louisiana, 1805 (Louisiana, p. 1371).
Territory of Illinois, 1809 (Illinois, p. 966).
Territory of Missouri, 1812 (Missouri, p. 2139).
Enabling Act for Illinois, 1818 (Illinois, p. 967).
Extension of Michigan Territory, 1834 (Iowa, p. 1111).
Territory of Wisconsin, 1836 (Wisconsin, p. 4065).
Territory of Iowa, 1838 (Iowa, p. 1111).

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MINNESOTA—1849

[Thirtieth Congress, Second Session]

An Act to establish the Territorial Government of Minnesota

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That from and after the passage of this act, all that part of the territory of the United States which lies within the following limits, to wit: Beginning in the Mississippi River, at the point where the line of forty-three degrees and thirty minutes of north latitude crosses the same; thence running due west on said line, which is the northern boundary of the State of Iowa, to the northwest corner of the said State of Iowa; thence southerly, along the western boundary of said State, to the point where said boundary strikes the Missouri River; thence up the middle of the main channel of the Missouri River to the mouth of the White Earth River; thence up the middle of the main channel of the White Earth River to the boundary-line between the possessions of the United States and Great Britain; thence east and south of east, along the boundary-line between the possessions of the United States and Great Britain, to Lake Superior; thence in Edition: current; Page: [1982] a straight line to the northernmost point of the State of Wisconsin in Lake Superior; thence along the western boundary-line of said State of Wisconsin to the Mississippi River; thence down the main channel of said river to the place of beginning, be, and the same is hereby, erected into a temporary government by the name of the Territory of Minnesota: Provided, That nothing in this act contained shall be construed to inhibit the Government of the United States from dividing said Territory into two or more Territories, in such manner and at such times as Congress shall deem convenient and proper, or from attaching any portion of said Territory to any other State or Territory of the United States.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the executive power and authority in and over said Territory of Minnesota shall be vested in a governor, who shall hold his office for four years, and until his successor shall be appointed and qualified, unless sooner removed by the President of the United States. The governor shall reside within said Territory, shall be commander-in-chief of the militia thereof, shall perform the duties and receive the emoluments of superintendent of Indian affairs; he may grant pardons for offences against the laws of said Territory, and reprieves for offences against the laws of the United States until the decision of the President can be made known thereon; he shall commission all officers who shall be appointed to office under the laws of the said Territory, and shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That there shall be a secretary of said Territory, who shall reside therein, and hold his office for four years, unless sooner removed by the President of the United States; he shall record and preserve all the laws and proceedings of the legislative assembly hereinafter constituted, and all the acts and proceedings of the governor in his executive department; he shall transmit one copy of the laws and one copy of the executive proceedings, on or before the first day of December in each year, to the President of the United States, and, at the same time, two copies of the laws to the Speaker of the House of Representatives and the President of the Senate, for the use of Congress. And in case of the death, removal, resignation, or necessary absence of the governor from the Territory, the secretary shall be, and he is hereby, authorized and required to execute and perform all the powers and duties of the governor during such vacancy or necessary absence, or until another governor shall be duly appointed to fill such vacancy.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the legislative power and authority of said Territory shall be vested in the governor and a legislative assembly. The legislative assembly shall consist of a council and house of representatives. The council shall consist of nine members, having the qualifications of voters, as hereinafter prescribed, whose term of service shall continue two years. The house of representatives shall, at its first session, consist of eighteen members, possessing the same qualifications as prescribed for members of the council, and whose term of service shall continue one year. The number of councillors and representatives may be increased by the legislative assembly, from time to time, in proportion to the increase of population: Provided, That the whole number shall never exceed fifteen councillors and thirty-nine representatives. An apportionment shall be made, as nearly equal as practicable, among the several Edition: current; Page: [1983] counties or districts, for the election of the council and representatives, giving to each section of the Territory representation in the ratio of its population, Indians excepted, as nearly as may be. And the members of the council and of the house of representatives shall reside in, and be inhabitants of, the district for which they may be elected respectively. Previous to the first election, the governor shall cause a census or enumeration of the inhabitants of the several counties and districts of the Territory to be taken, and the first election shall be held at such time and places, and be conducted in such manner, as the governor shall appoint and direct; and he shall, at the same time, declare the number of members of the council and house of representatives to which each of the counties or districts shall be entitled under this act. The number of persons authorized to be elected having the highest number of votes in each of said council districts for members of the council shall be declared by the governor to be duly elected to the council; and the person or persons authorized to be elected having the greatest number of votes for the house of representatives, equal to the number to which each county or district shall be entitled, shall be declared by the governor to be duly elected members of the house of representatives: Provided, That in case of a tie between two or more persons voted for, the governor shall order a new election to supply the vacancy made by such tie. And the persons thus elected to the legislative assembly shall meet at such place and on such day as the governor shall appoint; but thereafter the time, place and manner of holding and conducting all elections by the people, and the apportioning the representation in the several counties or districts to the council and house of representatives according to the population, shall be prescribed by law, as well as the day of the commencement of the regular sessions of the legislative assembly: Provided, That no one session shall exceed the term of sixty days.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That every free white male inhabitant above the age of twenty-one years, who shall have been a resident of said Territory at the time of the passage of this act, shall be entitled to vote at the first election, and shall be eligible to any office within the said Territory; but the qualifications of voters and of holding office, at all subsequent elections, shall be such as shall be prescribed by the legislative assembly: Provided, That the right of suffrage and of holding office shall be exercised only by citizens of the United States, and those who shall have declared, on oath, their intention to become such, and shall have taken an oath to support the Constitution of the United States and the provisions of this act.

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the legislative power of the Territory shall extend to all rightful subjects of legislation, consistent with the Constitution of the United States and the provisions of this act; but no law shall be passed interfering with the primary disposal of the soil; no tax shall be imposed upon the property of the United States; nor shall the lands or other property of non-residents be taxed higher than the lands or other property of residents. All the laws passed by the legislative assembly and governor shall be submitted to the Congress of the United States, and, if disapproved, shall be null and of no effect.

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That all township, district, and county officers, not herein otherwise provided for, shall be appointed Edition: current; Page: [1984] or elected, as the case may be, in such manner as shall be provided by the governor and legislative assembly of the Territory of Minnesota. The governor shall nominate, and, by and with the advice and consent of the legislative council, appoint, all officers not herein otherwise provided for; and in the first instance the governor alone may appoint all said officers, who shall hold their offices until the end of the next session of the legislative assembly.

Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That no member of the legislative assembly shall hold or be appointed to any office which shall have been created, or the salary or emoluments of which shall have been increased, while he was a member, during the term for which he was elected, and for one year after the expiration of such term; and no person holding a commission or appointment under the United States, except postmasters, shall be a member of the legislative assembly, or shall hold any office under the government of said Territory.

Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That the judicial power of said Territory shall be vested in a supreme court, district courts, probate courts, and in justices of the peace. The supreme court shall consist of a chief justice and two associate justices, any two of whom shall constitute a quorum, and who shall hold a term at the seat of government of said Territory annually, and they shall hold their offices during the period of four years. The said Territory shall be divided into three judicial districts, and a district court shall be held in each of said districts by one of the justices of the supreme court, at such times and places as may be prescribed by law; and the said judges shall, after their appointments, respectively, reside in the districts which shall be assigned them. The jurisdiction of the several courts herein provided for, both appellate and original, and that of the probate courts and of justices of the peace, shall be as limited by law: Provided, That the justices of the peace shall not have jurisdiction of any matter in controversy when the title or boundaries of land may be in dispute, or where the debt or sum claimed shall exceed one hundred dollars; and the said supreme and district courts, respectively, shall possess chancery as well as common-law jurisdiction. Each district court, or the judge thereof, shall appoint its clerk, who shall also be the register in chancery, and shall keep his office at the place where the court may be held. Writs of error, bills of exception, and appeals, shall be allowed in all cases from the final decisions of said district courts to the supreme court, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law, but in no case removed to the supreme court shall trial by jury be allowed in said court. The supreme court, or the justices thereof, shall appoint its own clerk, and every clerk shall hold his office at the pleasure of the court for which he shall have been appointed. Writs of error and appeals from the final decisions of said supreme court shall be allowed, and may be taken to the Supreme Court of the United States, in the same manner and under the same regulations as from the circuit courts of the United States, where the value of the property, or the amount in controversy, to be ascertained by the oath or affirmation of either party, or other competent witness, shall exceed one thousand dollars; and each of the said district courts shall have and exercise the same jurisdiction, in all cases arising under the Constitution and laws of the United States, as is vested in the circuit and district courts of the United States; and the first six days of every term of said courts, or so much thereof Edition: current; Page: [1985] as shall be necessary, shall be appropriated to the trial of causes arising under the said constitution and laws; and writs of error and appeal in all such cases shall be made to the supreme court of said Territory, the same as in other cases. The said clerk shall receive, in all such cases, the same fees which the clerks of the district courts of the late Wisconsin Territory received for similar services.

Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That there shall be appointed an attorney for said Territory, who shall continue in office for four years, unless sooner removed by the President, and who shall receive the same fees and salary as the attorney of the United States for the late Territory of Wisconsin received. There shall also be a marshal for the Territory appointed, who shall hold his office for four years, unless sooner removed by the President, and who shall execute all processes issuing from the said courts, when exercising their jurisdiction as circuit and district courts of the United States; he shall perform the duties, be subject to the same regulations and penalties, and be entitled to the same fees as the marshal of the district court of the United States for the late Territory of Wisconsin; and shall, in addition, be paid two hundred dollars annually as a compensation for extra services.

Sec. 11. And be it further enacted, That the governor, secretary, chief justice, and associate justices, attorney, and marshal, shall be nominated, and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appointed by the President of the United States. The governor and secretary, to be appointed as aforesaid, shall, before they act as such, respectively take an oath or affirmation, before the district judge, or some justice of the peace in the limits of said Territory, duly authorized to administer oaths and affirmations by the laws now in force therein, or before the Chief Justice or some associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, to support the Constitution of the United States, and faithfully to discharge the duties of their respective offices; which said oaths, when so taken, shall be certified by the person by whom the same shall have been taken, and such certificates shall be received and recorded by the said secretary among the ex-exutive proceedings; and the chief justice and associate justices, and all other civil officers in said Territory, before they act as such, shall take a like oath or affirmation, before the said governor or secretary, or some judge or justice of the peace of the Territory, who may be duly commissioned and qualified, which said oath or affirmation shall be certified and transmitted, by the person taking the same, to the secretary, to be by him recorded as aforesaid; and afterwards, the like oath or affirmation shall be taken, certified, and recorded in such manner and form as may be prescribed by law. The governor shall receive an annual salary of fifteen hundred dollars as governor, and one thousand dollars as superintendent of Indian affairs. The chief justice and associate justices shall each receive an annual salary of eighteen hundred dollars. The secretary shall receive an annual salary of eighteen hundred dollars. The said salaries shall be paid quarter-yearly, at the Treasury of the United States. The members of the legislative assembly shall be entitled to receive three dollars each per day during their attendance at the sessions thereof, and three dollars each for every twenty miles travel in going to and returning from the said sessions, estimated according to the nearest usually travelled Edition: current; Page: [1986] route. There shall be appropriated, annually, the sum of one thousand dollars, to be expended by the governor to defray the contingent expenses of the Territory; and there shall also be appropriated, annually, a sufficient sum, to be expended by the secretary of the Territory, and upon an estimate to be made by the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States, to defray the expenses of the legislative assembly, the printing of the laws, and other incidental expenses; and the secretary of the Territory shall annually account to the Secretary of the Treasury of the United States for the manner in which the aforesaid sum shall have been expended.

Sec. 12. And be it further enacted, That the inhabitants of the said Territory shall be entitled to all the rights, privileges, and immunities heretofore granted and secured to the Territory of Wisconsin and to its inhabitants; and the laws in force in the Territory of Wisconsin at the date of the admission of the State of Wisconsin shall continue to be valid and operative therein, so far as the same be not incompatible with the provisions of this act, subject, nevertheless, to be altered, modified, or repealed by the governor and legislative assembly of the said Territory of Minnesota; and the laws of the United States are hereby extended over and declared to be in force in said Territory, so far as the same, or any provision thereof, may be applicable.

Sec. 13. And be it further enacted, That the legislative assembly of the Territory of Minnesota shall hold its first session at Saint Paul; and at said first session the governor and legislative assembly shall locate and establish a temporary seat of government for said Territory at such place as they may deem eligible; and shall, at such time as they shall see proper, prescribe by law the manner of locating the permanent seat of government of said Territory by a vote of the people. And the sum of twenty thousand dollars, out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, is hereby appropriated and granted to said Territory of Minnesota, to be applied, by the governor and legislative assembly, to the erection of suitable public buildings at the seat of government.

Sec. 14. And be it further enacted, That a Delegate to the House of Representatives of the United States, to serve for the term of two years, may be elected by the voters qualified to elect members of the legislative assembly, who shall be entitled to the same rights and privileges as are exercised and enjoyed by the Delegates from the several other Territories of the United States to the said House of Representatives. The first election shall be held at such times and places, and be conducted in such manner, as the governor shall appoint and direct; and at all subsequent elections, the times, places, and manner of holding the elections shall be prescribed by law. The person having the greatest number of votes shall be declared by the governor to be duly elected, and a certificate thereof shall be given accordingly.

Sec. 15. And be it further enacted, That all suits, process, and proceedings, civil and criminal, at law and in chancery, and all indictments and informations, which shall be pending and undetermined in the courts of the Territory of Wisconsin, within the limits of said Territory of Minnesota, when this act shall take effect, shall be transferred, to be heard, tried, prosecuted, and determined in the district courts hereby established, which may include the counties or districts where any such proceedings may be pending. All bonds, Edition: current; Page: [1987] recognizances, and obligations, of every kind whatsoever, valid under the existing laws within the limits of said Territory, shall be valid under this act; and all crimes and misdemeanors against the laws in force within said limits may be prosecuted, tried, and punished in the courts established by this act; and all penalties, forfeitures, actions, and causes of action may be recovered under this act the same as they would have been under the laws in force within the limits composing said Territory at the time this act shall go into operation.

Sec. 16. And be it further enacted, That all justices of the peace, constables, sheriffs, and all other judicial and ministerial officers, who shall be in office within the limits of said Territory, when this act shall take effect, shall be, and they are hereby, authorized and required to continue to exercise and perform the duties of their respective offices as officers of the Territory of Minnesota, temporarily, and until they, or others, shall be duly appointed and qualified to fill their places in the manner herein directed, or until their offices shall be abolished.

Sec. 17. And be it further enacted, That the sum of five thousand dollars be, and the same is hereby, appropriated, out of any moneys in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, to be expended by and under the direction of the said governor of the Territory of Minnesota in the purchase of a library, to be kept at the seat of government, for the use of the governor, legislative assembly, judges of the supreme court, secretary, marshal, and attorney of said Territory, and such other persons and under such regulations as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 18. And be it further enacted, That when the lands in the said Territory shall be surveyed under the direction of the Government of the United States, preparatory to bringing the same into market, sections numbered sixteen and thirty-six in each township in said Territory shall be, and the same are hereby, reserved for the purpose of being applied to schools in said Territory, and in the States and Territories hereafter to be erected out of the same.

Sec. 19. And be it further enacted, That temporarily, and until otherwise provided by law, the governor of said Territory may define the judicial districts of said Territory, and assign the judges who may be appointed for said Territory to the several districts, and also appoint the times and places for holding courts in the several counties or subdivisions in each of said judicial districts, by proclamation to be issued by him; but the legislative assembly, at their first or any subsequent session, may organize, alter, or modify such judicial districts, and assign the judges, and alter the times and places of holding the courts, as to them shall seem proper and convenient.

Sec. 20. And be it further enacted, That every bill which shall or may pass the council and house of representatives shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the governor of the Territory; if he approve, he shall sign it, but if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it originated; which shall cause the objections to be entered at large upon their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall also be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of that house, it shall become a law; but in all such cases the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and Edition: current; Page: [1988] nays, and the names of the persons voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of each house, respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within three days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a law, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislative assembly, by adjournment, prevent it; in which case it shall not become a law.

ENABLING ACT FOR MINNESOTA—1857

[Thirty-fifth Congress, First Session]

An Act to authorize the People of the Territory of Minnesota to form a Constitution and State Government, preparatory to their Admission in the Union on an equal Footing with the original States

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the inhabitants of that portion of the Territory of Minnesota which is embraced in the following limits, to wit: Beginning at the point in the centre of the main channel of the Red River of the North where the boundary-line between the United States and the British possessions crosses the same; thence up the main channel of said river to that of the Boix des Sioux River; thence [up] the main channel of said river to Lake Traverse; thence up the centre of said lake to the southern extremity thereof; thence in a direct line to the head of Big Stone Lake; thence through its centre to its outlet; thence by a due-south line to the north line of the State of Iowa; thence east along the northern boundary of said State to the main channel of the Mississippi River; thence up the main channel of said river, and following the boundary-line of the State of Wisconsin, until the same intersects the Saint Louis River; thence down said river to and through Lake Superior, on the boundary-line of Wisconsin and Michigan, until it intersects the dividing-line between the United States and the British possessions; thence up Pigeon River, and following said dividing-line, to the place of beginning—be, and they are hereby, authorized to form for themselves a constitution and State government, by the name of the State of Minnesota, and to come into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, according to the Federal Constitution.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the said State of Minnesot shall have concurrent jurisdiction on the Mississippi and all other rivers and waters bordering on the said State of Minnesota, so far as the same shall form a common boundary to said State and any other State or States now or hereafter to be formed or bounded by the same, and said river and waters, and the navigable waters leading into the same, shall be common highways and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of said State as to all other citizens of the United States, without any tax, duty, impost, or toll therefor.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That on the first Monday in June next the legal voters in each representative district, then existing within the limits of the proposed State, are hereby authorized to elect two delegates for each representative to which said district may be entitled according to the apportionment for representatives to the Edition: current; Page: [1989] territorial legislature, which election for delegates shall be held and conducted and the returns made in all respects in conformity with the laws of said Territory regulating the election of representatives; and the delegates so elected shall assemble at the capital of said Territory on the second Monday in July next, and first determine, by a vote, whether it is the wish of the people of the proposed State to be admitted into the Union at that time, and, if so, shall proceed to form a constitution, and take all necessary steps for the establishment of a State government in conformity with the Federal Constitution, subject to the approval and ratification of the people of the proposed State.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That in the event said convention shall decide in favor of the immediate admission of the proposed State into the Union, it shall be the duty of the United States marshal for said Territory to proceed to take a census or enumeration of the inhabitants within the limits of the proposed State, under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by the Secretary of the Interior, with the view of ascertaining the number of Representatives to which said State may be entitled in the Congress of the United States; and said State shall be entitled to one Representative and such additional Representatives as the population of the State shall, according to the census, show it would be entitled to according to the present ratio of representation.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the following propositions be, and the same are hereby, offered to the said convention of the people of Minnesota for their free acceptance or rejection, which, if accepted by the convention, shall be obligatory on the United States and upon the said State of Minnesota, to wit:

First. That sections numbered sixteen and thirty-six in every township of public lands in said State, and where either of said sections, or any part thereof, has been sold or otherwise been disposed of, other lands, equivalent thereto and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to said State for the use of schools.

Second. That seventy-two sections of land shall be set apart and reserved for the use and support of a State university, to be selected by the governor of said State, subject to the approval of the Commissioner of the General Land-Office, and to be appropriated and applied in such manner as the legislature of said State may prescribe for the purpose aforesaid, but for no other purpose.

Third. That ten entire sections of land, to be selected by the governor of said State, in legal subdivisions, shall be granted to said State for the purpose of completing the public buildings, or for the erection of others at the seat of government, under the direction of the legislature thereof.

Fourth. That all salt springs within said State, not exceeding twelve in number, with six sections of land adjoining, or as contiguous as may be to each, shall be granted to said State for its use; the same to be selected by the governor thereof within one year after the admission of said State, and when so selected to be used or disposed of on such terms, conditions, and regulations as the legislature shall direct: Provided, That no salt spring or land, the right whereof is now vested in any individual or individuals, or which may be hereafter confirmed or adjudged to any individual or individuals, shall, by this article, be granted to said State.

Edition: current; Page: [1990]

Fifth. That five per centum of the net proceeds of sales of all public lands lying within said State, which shall be sold by Congress after the admission of the said State into the Union, after deducting all the expenses incident to the same, shall be paid to said State, for the purpose of making public roads and internal improvements, as the legislature shall direct: Provided, The foregoing propositions herein offered are on the condition that the said convention which shall form the constitution of said State shall provide, by a clause in said constitution, or an ordinance, irrevocable without the consent of the United States, that said State shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil within the same by the United States, or with any regulations Congress may find necessary for securing the title in said soil to bona-fide purchasers thereof; and that no tax shall be imposed on lands belonging to the United States, and that in no case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents.

ACT FOR THE ADMISSION OF MINNESOTA—1858

[Thirty-fifth Congress, First Session]

An Act for the Admission of the State of Minnesota into the Union

Whereas an act of Congress was passed February twenty-six, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, entitled “An act to authorize the people of the Territory of Minnesota to form a constitution and state government preparatory to their admission into the Union on an equal footing with the original States;” and whereas the people of said Territory did, on the twenty-ninth day of August, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, by delegates elected for that purpose, form for themselves a constitution and state government, which is republican in form, and was ratified and adopted by the people, at an election held on the thirteenth day of October, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, for that purpose: therefore

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the State of Minnesota shall be one, and is hereby declared to be one, of the United States of America, and admitted into the Union on an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatever.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That said State shall be entitled to two representatives in Congress until the next apportionment of representatives amongst the several States.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That from and after the admission of the State of Minnesota, as hereinbefore provided, all the laws of the United States which are not locally inapplicable shall have the same force and effect within that State as in other States of the Union; and the said State is hereby constituted a judicial district of the United States, within which a district court, with the like powers and jurisdiction as the district court of the United States for the district of Iowa, shall be established; the judge, attorney, and marshal of the United States for the said district of Minnesota shall reside within the same, and shall be entitled to the same compensation as Edition: current; Page: [1991] the judge, attorney, and marshal of the district of Iowa: and in all cases of appeal or writ of error heretofore prosecuted and now pending in the supreme court of the United States, upon any record from the supreme court of Minnesota Territory, the mandate of execution or order of further proceedings shall be directed by the supreme court of the United States to the district court of the United States for the district of Minnesota, or to the supreme court of the State of Minnesota, as the nature of such appeal or writ of error may require; and each of those courts shall be the successor of the supreme court of Minnesota Territory, as to all such cases, with full power to hear and determine the same, and to award mesne or final process therein.

CONSTITUTION OF MINNESOTA—1857*a

PREAMBLE

We, the people of the State of Minnesota, grateful to God for our civil and religious liberty, and desiring to perpetuate its blessings and secure the same to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this constitution:

Article I.: BILL OF RIGHTS

Section 1. Government is instituted for the security, benefit and protection of the people, in whom all political power is inherent, together with the right to alter, modify or reform such government, whenever the public good may require it.

Sec. 2. No member of this State shall be disfranchised, or deprived of any of the rights or privileges secured to any citizen thereof, unless by the law of the land, or the judgment of his peers. There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in the State otherwise than in the punishment of crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.

Sec. 3. The liberty of the press shall forever remain inviolate, and all persons may freely speak, write and publish their sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of such right.

Edition: current; Page: [1992]

Sec. 4. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate, and shall extend to all cases at law without regard to the amount in controversy, but a jury trial may be waived by the parties in all cases in the manner prescribed by law; [and the legislature may provide that the agreement of five-sixths of any jury in any civil action or proceeding, after not less than six (6) hours’ deliberation, shall be a sufficient verdict therein.]a

Sec. 5. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor shall excessive fines be imposed; nor shall cruel or unusual punishments be inflicted.

bSec. 6. In all criminal prosecutions the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the county or district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which county or district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation, to be confronted with the witnesses against him, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel in his defense.

Sec. 7. No person shall be held to answer for a criminal offense without due process of law, and no person for the same offense shall be put twice in jeopardy of punishment, nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property without due process of law. All persons shall before conviction be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offenses when the proof is evident or the presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended unless when in case of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require.

Sec. 8. Every person is entitled to a certain remedy in the laws for all injuries or wrongs which he may receive in his person, property or character; he ought to obtain justice freely and without purchase; completely and without denial; promptly and without delay, conformable to the laws.

Sec. 9. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against the same, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Sec. 10. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated; and no warrant shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched and the person or things to be seized.

Sec. 11. No bill of attainder, ex post facto law, nor any law impairing the obligation of contracts shall ever be passed, and no conviction shall work corruption of blood or forfeiture of estate.

Sec. 12. No person shall be imprisoned for debt in this State,c but this shall not prevent the legislature from providing for imprisonment, Edition: current; Page: [1993] or holding to bail, persons charged with fraud in contracting said debt. A reasonable amount of property shall be exempt from seizure or sale for the payment of any debt or liability. The amount of such exemption shall be determined by law. [Provided, however, that all property so exempted shall be liable to seizure and sale for any debts incurred to any person for work done or materials furnished in the contruction, repair or improvement of the same; and, provided further, that such liability to seizure and sale shall also extend to all real property for any debt incurred to any laborer or servant for labor or service performed.]a

Sec. 13. Private property shall not be taken, destroyed or damaged for public use without just compensation therefor, first paid or secured.b

Sec. 14. The military shall be subordinate to the civil power, and no standing army shall be kept up in this State in time of peace.

Sec. 15. All lands within the State are declared to be allodial, and feudal tenures of every description, with all their incidents, are prohibited. Leases and grants of agricultural lands for a longer period than twenty-one years, hereafter made, in which shall be reserved any rent or service of any kind, shall be void.

Sec. 16. The enumeration of rights in this constitution shall not be construed to deny or impair others retained by and inherent in the people. The right of every man to worship God according to the dictates of his own conscience shall never be infringed, nor shall any man be compelled to attend, erect or support any place of worship, or to maintain any religious or ecclesiastical ministry, against his consent; nor shall any control of or interference with the rights of conscience be permitted, or any preference be given by law to any religious establishment or mode of worship; but the liberty of conscience hereby secured shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness, or justify practices inconsistent with the peace or safety of the State, nor shall any money be drawn from the treasury for the benefit of any religious societies, or religious or theological seminaries.

Sec. 17. No religious test or amount of property shall ever be required as a qualification for any office of public trust under the State. No religious test or amount of property shall ever be required as a qualification of any voter at any election in this State; nor shall any person be rendered incompetent to give evidence in any court of law or equity in consequence of his opinion upon the subject of religion.

Article II: ON NAME AND BOUNDARIES

Section 1. This State shall be called and known by the name of the State of Minnesota, and shall consist of and have jurisdiction over the territory embraced in the following boundaries, to-wit: Beginning at the point in the center of the main channel of the Red River of the North, where the boundary line between the United States and Edition: current; Page: [1994] British Possessions crosses the same; thence up the main channel of said river to that of the Bois des Sioux river; thence up the main channel of said river to Lake Traverse; thence up the center of said lake to the southern extremity thereof; thence in a direct line to the head of Big Stone lake; thence through its center to its outlet; thence by a due south line to the north line of the State of Iowa; thence east along the northern boundary of said State to the main channel of the Mississippi river; thence up the main channel of said river and following the boundary line of the State of Wisconsin until the same intersects the St. Louis river; thence down the said river to and through Lake Superior, on the boundary line of Wisconsin and Michigan, until it intersects the dividing line between the United States and British Possessions; thence up Pigeon river and following said dividing line to the place of beginning.a

Sec. 2. The State of Minnesota shall have concurrent jurisdiction on the Mississippi and on all other rivers and waters bordering on the said State of Minnesota, so far as the same shall form a common boundary to said State, and any other state or states now or hereafter to be formed by the same; and said rivers and waters, and navigable waters leading into the same, shall be common highways and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of said State as to other citizens of the United States, without any tax, duty, impost, or toll therefor.

Sec. 3. The propositions contained in the act of Congress entitled, “An act to authorize the people of the Territory of Minnesota to form a constitution and state government, preparatory to their admission into the Union on equal footing with the original states,” are hereby Edition: current; Page: [1995] accepted, ratified and confirmed, and shall remain irrevocable without the consent of the United States; and it is hereby ordained that this State shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil within the same, by the United States, or with any regulations Congress may find necessary for securing the title to said soil to bona fide purchasers thereof; and no tax shall be imposed on lands belonging to the United States and in no case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents.

Article III: DISTRIBUTION OF THE POWERS OF GOVERNMENT

Section 1. The powers of government shall be divided into three distinct departments—legislative, executive, and judicial; and no person or persons belonging to or constituting one of these departments shall exercise any of the powers properly belonging to either of the others, except in the instances expressly provided in this constitution.a

Article IV: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The legislature shall consist of the Senate and House of Representatives, which shall meet biennially at the seat of government of the State, at such time as shall be prescribed by law, but no session shall exceed the term of ninety (90) legislative days;b and no new bill shall be introduced in either branch, except on the written request of the governor, during the last twenty (20) days of such sessions, except the attention of the legislature shall be called to some important matter of general interest by a special message from the governor.c

Sec. 2. The number of members who compose the Senate and House of Representatives shall be prescribed by law, but the representatives in the Senate shall never exceed one member for every 5,000 inhabitants, and in the House of Representatives one member for every 2,000 inhabitants. The representation in both houses shall be apportioned equally throughout the different sections of the State, in proportion to the population thereof, exclusive of Indians not taxable under the provisions of law.

Sec. 3. Each house shall be the judge of the election returns and eligibility of its own members;d a majority of each shall constitute Edition: current; Page: [1996] a quorum to transact business, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as it may provide.

Sec. 4. Each house may determine the rules of its proceedings, sit upon its own adjournment, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds, expel a member; but no member shall be expelled the second time for the same offense.

Sec. 5. The House of Representatives shall elect its presiding officer and the Senate and House of Representatives shall elect such other officers as may be provided by law; they shall keep journals of their proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, and the yeas and nays, when taken on any question, shall be entered on such journals.

Sec. 6. Neither house shall, during a session of the legislature, adjourn for more than three days (Sundays excepted), nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be assembled, without the consent of the other house.

Sec. 7. The compensation of senators and representatives shall be three dollars per diem during the first session, but may afterwards be prescribed by law.a But no increase of compensation shall be prescribed which shall take effect during the period for which the members of the existing House of Representatives may have been elected.

Sec. 8. The members of each house shall in all cases, except treason, felony, and breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of their respective houses, and in going to or returning from the same. For any speech or debate in either house they shall not be questioned in any other place.

Sec. 9. No senator or representative shall, during the time for which he is elected, hold any office under the authority of the United States or the State of Minnesota, except that of postmaster, and no senator or representative shall hold an office under the state which has been created or the emoluments of which have been increased during the session of the legislature of which he was a member, until one year after the expiration of his term of office in the legislature.b

Sec. 10. All bills for raising a revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives, but the Senate may propose and concur with amendments as on other bills.

Sec. 11. Every bill which shall have passed the Senate and House of Representatives, in conformity to the rules of each house and the joint rules of the two houses, shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the governor of the State. If he approve, he shall sign and deposit it in the office of secretary of state for preservation, and notify the house where it originated of the fact. But if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it shall have originated; when such objections shall be entered at large on the journal of the same, and the house shall proceed to reconsider the bill. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered; and if it be approved by two-thirds of that house it shall become a law. But in all such cases the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for or against the bill shall be entered Edition: current; Page: [1997] on the journal of each house, respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within three days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by adjournment within that time, prevents its return; in which case it shall not be a law. The governor may approve, sign and file in the office of the secretary of state, within three days after the adjournment of the legislature, any act passed during the last three days of the session, and the same shall become a law.

[If any bill presented to the governor contain several items of appropriation of money, he may object to one or more of such items, while approving of the other portion of the bill. In such case he shall append to the bill, at the time of signing it, a statement of the items to which he objects, and the appropriation so objected to shall not take effect. If the legislature be in session, he shall transmit to the house in which the bill originated a copy of such statement, and the items objected to shall be separately reconsidered. If, on reconsideration, one or more of such items be approved by two-thirds of the members elected to each house, the same shall be a part of the law, notwithstanding the objections of the governor. All the provisions of this section, in relation to bills not approved by the governor, shall apply in cases in which he shall withhold his approval from any item or items contained in a bill appropriating money.]a

Sec. 12. No money shall be appropriated except by bill. Every order, resolution or vote requiring the concurrence of the two houses (except such as relate to the business or adjournment of the same) shall be presented to the governor for his signature, and, before the same shall take effect, shall be approved by him, or, being returned by him with his objections, shall be repassed by two-thirds of the members of the two houses, according to the rules and limitations prescribed in case of a bill.

Sec. 13. The style of all laws of this State shall be: “Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Minnesota.” No law shall be passed unless voted for by a majority of all the members elected to each branch of the legislature, and the vote entered upon the journal of each house.

Sec. 14. The House of Representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment, through a concurrence of a majority of all the members elected to seats therein. All impeachments shall be tried by the Senate; and when sitting for that purpose the senators shall be upon oath or affirmation to do justice according to law and evidence. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.

Sec. 15. The legislature shall have full power to exclude from the privilege of electing or being elected any person convicted of bribery, perjury, or any other infamous crime.

Sec. 16. Two or more members of either house shall have liberty to dissent and protest against any act or resolution which they may think injurious to the public or to any individual, and have the reason of their dissent entered on the journal.

Sec. 17. The governor shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as may occur in either house of the legislature. The legislature Edition: current; Page: [1998] shall prescribe by law the manner in which evidence in case of contested seats in either house shall be taken.

Sec. 18. Each house may punish by imprisonment, during its session, any person, not a member, who shall be guilty of any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in their presence, but no such imprisonment shall at any time exceed twenty-four hours.

Sec. 19. Each house shall be open to the public during the sessions thereof, except in such cases as in their opinion may require secrecy.

Sec. 20. Every bill shall be read on three different days in each separate house, unless, in case of urgency, two-thirds of the house where such bill is depending shall deem it expedient to dispense with this rule; and no bill shall be passed by either house until it shall have been previously read twice at length.a

Sec. 21. Every bill having passed both houses shall be carefully enrolled, and shall be signed by the presiding officer of each house. Any presiding officer refusing to sign a bill which shall have previously passed both houses shall thereafter be incapable of holding a seat in either branch of the legislature, or hold any other office of honor or profit in the State, and in case of such refusal, each house shall, by rule, provide the manner in which such bill shall be properly certified for presentation to the governor.

Sec. 22. No bill shall be passed by either house of the legislature upon the day prescribed for the adjournment of the two houses. But this section shall not be so construed as to preclude the enrollment of a bill, or the signature and passage from one house to the other, or the reports thereon from committees, or its transmission to the executive for his signature.

Sec. 23. The legislature shall provide by law for an enumeration of the inhabitants of this State in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty-five, and every tenth year thereafter. At their first session after each enumeration so made, and also at their first session after each enumeration made by the authority of the United States, the legislature shall have the power to prescribe the bounds of congressional, senatorial and representative districts, and to apportion anew the senators and representatives among the several districts according to the provisions of section second of this article.

Sec. 24. The senators shall also be chosen by single districts of convenient contiguous territory, at the same time that members of the house of representatives are required to be chosen, and in the same manner; and no representative district shall be divided in the formation of a senate district. The senate districts shall be numbered in a regular series. The terms of office of senators and representatives shall be the same as now prescribed by law until the general election of the year one thousand eight hundred and seventy-eight (1878), at which time there shall be an entire new election of all the senators and representatives. Representatives chosen at such election, or at any election thereafter, shall hold their office for the term of two years, except it be to fill a vacancy; and the senators chosen at such election by districts designated as odd numbers shall go out of office at the expiration of the second year, and senators chosen by districts designated by even numbers shall go out of office Edition: current; Page: [1999] at the expiration of the fourth year; and thereafter senators shall be chosen for four years, except there shall be an entire new election of all the senators at the election of representatives next succeeding each new apportionment provided for in this article.a

Sec. 25. Senators and representatives shall be qualified voters of the State, and shall have resided one year in the State and six months immediately preceding the election in the district from which they are elected.

Sec. 26. Members of the Senate of the United States from this State shall be elected by the two houses of the legislature in joint convention, at such time and in such manner as may be provided by law.b

Sec. 27. No law shall embrace more than one subject, which shall be expressed in its title.c

Sec. 28. Divorces shall not be granted by the legislature.

Sec. 29. All members and officers of both branches of the legislature shall, before entering upon the duties of their respective trusts, take and subscribe an oath or affirmation to support the Constitution of the United States, the Constitution of the State of Minnesota, and Edition: current; Page: [2000] faithfully and impartially to discharge the duties devolving upon him as such member or officer.

Sec. 30. In all elections to be made by the legislature, the members thereof shall vote viva voce, and their votes shall be entered on the journal.

Sec. 31. The legislature shall never authorize any lottery or the sale of lottery tickets.

aSec. 32. Any law providing for the repeal or amendment of any law or laws heretofore or hereafter enacted, which provides that any railroad company now existing in this State or operating its road therein, or which may be hereafter organized, shall, in lieu of all other taxes and assessments upon their real estate, roads, rolling stock, and other personal property, at and during the time and periods therein specified, pay into the treasury of this State a certain percentage therein mentioned of the gross earnings of such railroad companies now existing or hereafter organized, shall, before the same shall take effect or be in force, be submitted to a vote of the people of the State, and be adopted and ratified by a majority of the electors of the State voting at the election at which the same shall be submitted to them.

bSec. 32. All lands donated to the State of Minnesota for the purpose of internal improvement, under the eighth section of the act of Congress, approved September fourth, eighteen hundred and forty-one, being “An act to appropriate the proceeds of the sale of the public lands, and to grant preemption rights,” shall be appraised and sold, in the same manner and by the same officers, and the minimum price shall be the same as is provided by law for the appraisement and sale of the school lands, under the provisions of title one (1), chapter thirty-eight, of the General Statutes, except the modifications hereinafter mentioned. All moneys derived from the sales of said lands shall be invested in the bonds of the United States, or of the State of Minnesota issued since 1860; and the moneys so invested shall constitute the Internal Improvement Land Fund of the State. All moneys received by the county treasurer under the provisions of title one (1), chapter thirty-eight (38), aforesaid, derived from the sale of internal improvement lands, shall be held at all times subject to the order and direction of the state treasurer, for the benefit of the fund to which it belongs; and on the fifteenth day of June in each year, and at such other times as he may be requested so to do by the state treasurer, he shall pay over to the said state treasurer all moneys received on account of such fund.

The bonds purchased in accordance with this amendment shall be transferable only upon the order of the governor, and on each bond shall be written “Minnesota Internal Improvement Land Fund of the State, transferable only on the order of the governor.”

The principal sum from all sales of internal improvement lands shall not be reduced by any charges or costs of officers, by fees, or by any other means whatever; and section fifty (50), of title one (1), of chapter thirty-eight (38), of the General Statutes, shall not be applicable to the provisions of this amendment, and wherever the Edition: current; Page: [2001] words “school lands” are used in said title, it shall read as applicable to this amendment, “Internal Improvement Lands.”

The moneys belonging to the Internal Improvement Land Fund shall not be appropriated for any purpose whatever until the enactment for that purpose shall have been approved by a majority of the electors of the State voting at the annual general election following the passage of the act.a

The force of this amendment shall be to authorize the sale of the internal improvement lands, without further legislative enactment.

bSec. 33. In all cases when a general law can be made applicable, no special law shall be enacted; and whether a general law could have been made applicable in any case is hereby declared a judicial question, and as such shall be judicially determined without regard to any legislative assertion on that subject. The legislature shall pass no local or special law regulating the affairs of, or incorporating, erecting or changing the lines of, any county, city, village, township, ward or school district, or creating the offices, or prescribing the powers and duties of the officers of, or fixing or relating to the compensation, salary or fees of the same, or of the mode of election or appointment thereto, authorizing the laying out, opening, altering, vacating or maintaining roads, highways, streets or alleys; remitting fines, penalties or forfeitures; regulating the powers, duties and practice of justices of the peace, magistrates and constables; changing the names of persons, places, lakes or rivers; for opening and conducting of elections, or fixing or changing the places of voting; authorizing the adoption or legitimation of children; changing the law of descent or succession; conferring rights upon minors; declaring any named person of age; giving effect to informal or invalid wills or deeds, or affecting the estates of minors or persons under disability; locating or changing county seats; regulating the management of public schools, the building or repairing of schoolhouses, and the raising of money for such purposes; exempting property from taxation, or regulating the rate of interest on money; creating corporations, or amending, renewing, extending or explaining the charters thereof; granting to any corporation, association or individual any special or exclusive privilege, immunity or franchise whatever, or authorizing public taxation for a private purpose. Provided, however, That the inhibitions of local or special laws in this section shall not be construed to prevent the passage of general laws on any of the subjects enumerated.

The legislature may repeal any existing special or local law, but shall not amend, extend or modify any of the same.

cSec. 34. The legislature shall provide general laws for the transaction of any business that may be prohibited by section one (1) of Edition: current; Page: [2002] this amendment, and all such laws shall be uniform in their operation throughout the State.

aSec. 35. Any combinations of persons, either as individuals or as members or officers of any corporation, to monopolize the markets for food products in this State, or to interfere with, or restrict the freedom of, such markets, is hereby declared to be a criminal conspiracy, and shall be punished in such manner as the legislature may provide.

bSec. 36. Any city or village in this State may frame a charter for its own government as a city consistent with and subject to the laws of this State, as follows: The legislature shall provide, under such restrictions as it deems proper, for a board of fifteen freeholders, who shall be and for the past five years shall have been qualified voters thereof, to be appointed by the district judges of the judicial district in which the city or village is situated, as the legislature may determine, for a term in no event to exceed six years, which board shall, within six months after its appointment, return to the chief magistrate of said city or village a draft of said charter, signed by the members of said board, or a majority thereof. Such charter shall be submitted to the qualified voters of such city or village at the next election thereafter, and if four-sevenths of the qualified voters voting at such election shall ratify the same it shall, at the end of thirty days thereafter, become the charter of such city or village as a city, and supersede any existing charter and amendments thereof; provided, that in cities having patrol limits now established, such charter shall require a three-fourths majority vote of the qualified voters voting at such election to change the patrol limits now established.

Before any city shall incorporate under this act the legislature shall prescribe by law the general limits within which such charter shall be framed. Duplicate certificates shall be made setting forth the charter proposed and its ratification, which shall be signed by the chief magistrate of said city or village and authenticated by its corporate seal. One of said certificates shall be deposited in the office of secretary of state, and the other, after being recorded in the office of the register of deeds for the county in which such city or village lies, shall be deposited among the archives of such city or village, and all courts shall take judicial notice thereof. Such charter so deposited may be amended by proposal therefor made by a board of fifteen commissioners aforesaid, published for at least thirty days in three newspapers of general circulation in such city or village, and accepted by three-fifths of the qualified voters of such city or village voting at the next election, and not otherwise; but such charter shall always be in harmony with and subject to the Constitution and laws of the State of Minnesota. The legislature may prescribe the duties of the commission relative to submitting amendments of charter to the vote of the people and shall provide that upon application of five per cent of the legal voters of any such city or village, by written petition, such commission shall submit to the vote of the people proposed amendments to such charter set forth in said petition. The board of freeholders above provided for shall be permanent, and all the vacancies by death, disability to perform duties, resignation or removal from the corporate limits, or expiration of term of office, Edition: current; Page: [2003] shall be filled by appointment in the same manner as the original board was created, and said board shall always contain its full complement of members.

It shall be a feature of all such charters that there shall be provided, among other things, for a mayor or chief magistrate, and a legislative body of either one or two houses; if of two houses, at least one of them shall be elected by general vote of the electors.

In submitting any such charter or amendment thereto to the qualified voters of such city or village, any alternate section or article may be presented for the choice of the voters, and may be voted on separately without prejudice to other articles or sections of the charter or any amendments thereto.

The legislature may provide general laws relating to affairs of cities, the application of which may be limited to cities of over fifty thousand inhabitants, or to cities of fifty and not less than twenty thousand inhabitants, or to cities of twenty and not less than ten thousand inhabitants, or to cities of ten thousand inhabitants or less, which shall apply equally to all such cities of either class, and which shall be paramount while in force to the provisions relating to the same matter included in the local charter herein provided for. But no local charter, provision or ordinance passed thereunder shall supersede any general law of the State defining or punishing crimes or misdemeanors.

Article V: EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The executive department shall consist of a governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer and attorney general who shall be chosen by the electors of the State.a

bSec. 2. The returns of every election for the officers named in the foregoing section shall be made to the secretary of state, who shall call to his assistance two or more of the judges of the supreme court, and two disinterested judges of the district courts of the State, who shall constitute a board of canvassers, who shall open and canvass said returns and declare the result within three days after such canvass.

Sec. 3. The term of office for the governor and lieutenant governor shall be two years, and until their successors are chosen and qualified. Each shall have attained the age of twenty-five (25) years, and shall have been a bona fide resident of the State for one year next preceding his election. Both shall be citizens of the United States.

Sec. 4. The governor shall communicate by message to each session of the legislature such information touching the state and condition of the country as he may deem expedient. He shall be commander-in-chief of the military and naval forces, and may call out such forces to execute the laws, suppress insurrection and repel invasion. He may require the opinion, in writing, of the principal officer in each of the executive departments, upon any subject relating to the duties of Edition: current; Page: [2004] their respective offices;a and he shall have power, in conjunction with the board of pardons, of which the governor shall be ex officio a member, and the other members of which shall consist of the attorney general of the State of Minnesota and the chief justice of the supreme court of the State of Minnesota, and whose powers and duties shall be defined and regulated by law, to grant reprieves and pardons after conviction for offenses against the State, except in cases of impeachment. He shall have power, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to appoint a state librarian and notaries public, and such other officers as may be provided by law. He shall have power to appoint commissioners to take the acknowledgment of deeds or other instruments in writing, to be used in the State. He shall have a negative upon all laws passed by the legislature, under such rules and limitations as are in this Constitution prescribed. He may on extraordinary occasions convene both houses of the legislature. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed, fill any vacancy that may occur in the office of secretary of state, treasurer, auditor, attorney general, and such other state and district offices as may be hereafter created by law, until the next annual election, and until their successors are chosen and qualified.

Sec. 5. The official term of the secretary of state, treasurer and attorney general shall be two (2) years. The official term of the state auditor shall be four (4) years, and each shall continue in office until his successor shall have been elected and qualified. The further duties and salaries of said executive officers shall each be prescribed by law.b

Sec. 6. The lieutenant governor shall be ex officio president of the Senate; and in case a vacancy shall occur, from any cause whatever, in the office of governor, he shall be governor during such vacancy. The compensation of lieutenant governor shall be double the compensation of a state senator. Before the close of each session of the Senate they shall elect a president pro tempore, who shall be lieutenant governor in case a vacancy should occur in that office.

*cSec. 7. The term of each of the executive officers named in this article shall commence on taking the oath of office on or after the first day of May, 1858, and continue until the first Monday of January, 1860, except the auditor, who shall continue in office till the first Monday of January, 1861, and until their successors shall have been duly elected and qualified; and the same above mentioned time for qualification and entry upon the duties of their respective offices shall extend and apply to all other officers elected under the State Constitution, who have not already taken the oath of office, and commenced the performance of their official duties.

Sec. 8. Each officer created by this article shall, before entering upon his duties, take an oath or affirmation to support the Constitution of the United States and of this State, and faithfully discharge the duties of his office to the best of his judgment and ability.

*Sec. 9. Laws shall be passed at the first session of the legislature after the State is admitted into the Union to carry out the provisions of this article.

Edition: current; Page: [2005]

Article VI: JUDICIARY

aSection 1. The judicial power of the State shall be vested in a supreme court, district courts, courts of probate, justices of the peace, and such other courts, inferior to the supreme court, as the legislature may from time to time establish by a two-thirds vote.

Sec. 2. The supreme court shall consist of one chief justice and two associate justices, but the number of the associate justices may be increased to a number not exceeding four, by the legislature, by a two-thirds vote, when it shall be deemed necessary. It shall have original jurisdiction in such remedial cases as may be prescribed by law, and appellate jurisdiction in all cases, both in law and equity, but there shall be no trial by jury in said court. It shall hold one or more terms in each year, as the legislature may direct, at the seat of government, and the legislature may provide, by a two-thirds vote, that one term in each year shall be held in each or any judicial district. It shall be the duty of such court to appoint a reporter of its decisions. There shall be chosen, by the qualified electors of the State, one clerk of the supreme court, who shall hold his office for the term of four years, and until his successor is duly elected and qualified, and the judges of the supreme court, or a majority of them, shall have the power to fill any vacancy in the office of clerk of the supreme court until an election can be regularly had.b

Sec. 3. The judges of the supreme court shall be elected by the electors of the State at large, and their term of office shall be six years, and until their successors are elected and qualified.

[Whenever all or a majority of the judges of the supreme court shall, from any cause, be disqualified from sitting in any case in said court, the governor, or, if he shall be interested in the result of such case, then the lieutenant governor, shall assign judges of the district court of the State, who shall sit in such case in place of such disqualified judges, with all the powers and duties of judges of the supreme court.]c

dSec. 4. The State shall be divided by the legislature into judicial districts, which shall be composed of contiguous territory, be bounded by county lines, and contain a population as nearly equal as may be practicable. In each judicial district, one or more judges, as the legislature may prescribe, shall be elected by the electors thereof, whose term-of office shall be six years, and each of said judges shall severally have and exercise the powers of the court, under such limitations as may be prescribed by law. Every district judge shall, at the time of his election, be a resident of the district for which he shall be elected, and shall reside therein during his continuance in office. In case any court of common pleas heretofore established shall be abolished, the judge of said court may be constituted by the legislature Edition: current; Page: [2006] one of the judges of the district court of the district wherein such court has been so established for a period not exceeding the unexpired term for which he was elected.

Sec. 5. The district courts shall have original jurisdiction in all civil cases, both in law and equity, where the amount in controversy exceeds one hundred dollars, and in all criminal cases where the punishment shall exceed three months’ imprisonment or a fine of more than one hundred dollars, and shall have such appellate jurisdiction as may be prescribed by law. The legislature may provide by law that the judge of one district may discharge the duties of judge of any other district not his own, when convenience or the public interest may require it.

Sec. 6. The judges of the supreme and district courts shall be men learned in the law, and shall receive such compensation at stated times as may be prescribed by the legislature; which compensation shall not be diminished during their continuance in office, but they shall receive no other fee or reward for their services.

Sec. 7. There shall be established in each organized county in the State a probate court, which shall be a court of record, and be held at such time and places as may be prescribed by law. It shall be held by one judge, who shall be elected by the voters of the county for the term of two years. He shall be a resident of such county at the time of his election, and reside therein during his continuance in office; and his compensation shall be provided by law. He may appoint his own clerk where none has been elected; but the legislature may authorize the election, by the electors of any county, of one clerk or register of probate for such county, whose powers, duties, term of office and compensation shall be prescribed by law. A probate court shall have jurisdiction over the estates of deceased persons and persons under guardianship, but no other jurisdiction, except as prescribed by this Constitution.

Sec. 8. The legislature shall provide for the election of a sufficient number of justices of the peace in each county, whose term of office shall be two years, and whose duties and compensation shall be prescribed by law. Provided, That no justice of the peace shall have jurisdiction of any civil cause where the amount in controversy shall exceed one hundred dollars, nor in a criminal cause where the punishment shall exceed three months’ imprisonment, or a fine over one hundred dollars, nor in any cause involving the title to real estate.

Sec. 9. All judges other than those provided for in this Constitution shall be elected by the electors of the judicial district, county, or city, for which they shall be created, not for a longer term than seven years.

Sec. 10. In case the office of any judge become vacant before the expiration of the regular term for which he was elected, the vacancy shall be filled by appointment by the governor, until a successor is elected and qualified. And such successor shall be elected at the first annual election that occurs more than thirty days after the vacancy shall have happened.

Sec. 11. The justices of the supreme court and the district courts shall hold no office under the United States, nor any other office under this State. And all votes for either of them for any elective office under this Constitution, except a judicial office given by the legislature or the people, during their continuance in office, shall be void.

Edition: current; Page: [2007]

Sec. 12. The legislature may at any time change the number of judicial districts or their boundaries, when it shall be deemed expedient; but no such change shall vacate the office of any judge.

Sec. 13. There shall be elected in each county where a district court shall be held, one clerk of said court, whose qualifications, duties and compensation shall be prescribed by law, and whose term of office shall be four years.

Sec. 14. Legal pleadings and proceedings in the courts of this State shall be under the direction of the legislature. The style of all process shall be, “The State of Minnesota,” and all indictments shall conclude, “against the peace and dignity of the State of Minnesota.”

Sec. 15. The legislature may provide for the election of one person in each organized county in this State, to be called a court commissioner, with judicial power and jurisdiction not exceeding the power and jurisdiction of a judge of the district court at chambers; or the legislature may, instead of such election, confer such power and jurisdiction upon the judges of probate in the State.

Article VII: ELECTIVE FRANCHISE

aSection 1. What persons are entitled to vote:

Every male person of the age of twenty-one (21) years or upwards belonging to either of the following classes who has resided in this State six (6) months next preceding any election shall be entitled to vote at such election in the election district of which he shall at the time have been for thirty (30) days a resident, for all officers that now are, or hereafter may be, elective by the people.

FirstCitizens of the United States who have been such for the period of three (3) months next preceding any election.

SecondPersons of mixed white and Indian blood, who have adopted the customs and habits of civilization.

ThirdPersons of Indian blood residing in this State, who have adopted the language, customs and habits of civilization, after an examination before any district court of the State, in such manner as may be provided by law, and shall have been pronounced by said court capable of enjoying the rights of citizenship within the State.

Sec. 2. No person not belonging to one of the classes specified in the preceding section; no person who has been convicted of treason or any felony, unless restored to civil rights; and no person under guardianship, or who may be non compos mentis or insane, shall be entitled or permitted to vote at any election in this State.

Sec. 3. For the purpose of voting, no person shall be deemed to have lost a residence by reason of his absence while employed in the service of the United States; nor while engaged upon the waters of this State or of the United States; nor while a student in any seminary of learning; nor while kept at any almshouse or asylum; nor while confined in any public prison.

Edition: current; Page: [2008]

Sec. 4. No soldier, seaman or marine in the army or navy of the United States shall be deemed a resident of this State in consequence of being stationed within the same.

Sec. 5. During the day on which any election shall be held, no person shall be arrested by virtue of any civil process.

Sec. 6. All elections shall be by ballot, except for such town officers as may be directed by law to be otherwise chosen.

Sec. 7. Every person who by the provisions of this article shall be entitled to vote at any election shall be eligible to any office which now is, or hereafter shall be, elective by the people in the district wherein he shall have resided thirty days previous to such election, except as otherwise provided in this Constitution, or the Constitution and laws of the United States.a

bSec. 8. Women may vote for school officers and members of library boards, and shall be eligible to hold any office pertaining to the management of schools or libraries.

Any woman of the age of twenty-one (21) years and upward and possessing the qualifications requisite to a male voter may vote at any election held for the purpose of choosing any officer of schools or any members of library boards, or upon any measure relating to schools or libraries, and shall be eligible to hold any office pertaining to the management of schools and libraries.c

dSec. 9. The official year for the State of Minnesota shall commence on the first Monday in January in each year, and all terms of office shall terminate at that time; and the general election shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November. The first general election for State and county officers, except judicial officers, after the adoption of this amendment, shall be held in the year ad one thousand eight hundred and eighty-four (1884), and thereafter the general election shall be held biennially. All State, county or other officers elected at any general election, whose terms of office would otherwise expire on the first Monday of January, ad one thousand eight hundred and eighty-six (1886), shall hold and continue in such offices, respectively, until the first Monday in January, one thousand eight hundred and eighty-seven (1887).

Article VIII: SCHOOL FUNDS, EDUCATION AND SCIENCE

eSection 1. The stability of a republican form of government depending mainly upon the intelligence of the people, it shall be the Edition: current; Page: [2009] duty of the legislature to establish a general and uniform system of public schools.

Sec. 2. The proceeds of such lands as are or hereafter may be granted by the United States for the use of schools within each township of this State shall remain a perpetual school fund to the State; and not more than one-third (⅓) of said lands may be sold in two (2) years, one-third (⅓) in five (5) years, and one-third (⅓) in ten (10) years; but the lands of the greatest valuation shall be sold first; provided, that no portion of said lands shall be sold otherwise than at public sale. The principal of all funds arising from sales or other disposition of lands or other property, granted or entrusted to this State in each township for educational purposes, shall forever be preserved inviolate and undiminished; and the income arising from the lease or sale of said school land shall be distributed to the different townships throughout the State, in proportion to the number of scholars in each township, between the ages of five and twenty-one years; and shall be faithfully applied to the specific objects of the original grants or appropriations.

[Suitable laws shall be enacted by the legislature for the safe investment of the principal of all funds which have heretofore arisen or which may hereafter arise from the sale or other disposition of such lands, or the income from such lands accruing in any way before the sale or disposition thereof, in interest-bearing bonds of the United States, or of the State of Minnesota, issued after the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty (1860), or of such other state as the legislature may, by law, from time to time direct.]ab

All swamp lands now held by the State, or that may hereafter accrue to the State, shall be appraised and sold in the same manner and by the same officers, and the minimum price shall be the same less one-third (⅓), as is provided by law for the appraisement and sale of the school lands under the provisions of title one (1) of chapter thirty-eight (38) of the General Statutes. The principal of all funds derived from sales of swamp lands, as aforesaid, shall forever be preserved inviolate and undiminished. One-half (½) of the proceeds of said principal shall be appropriated to the common school fund of the State. The remaining one-half (½) shall be appropriated to the educational and charitable institutions of the State in the relative ratio of cost to support said institutions.c

Sec. 3. The legislature shall make such provisions, by taxation or otherwise, as, with the income arising from the school fund, will secure a thorough and efficient system of public schools in each township in the State.

[But in no case shall the moneys derived as aforesaid, or any portion thereof, or any public moneys or property, be appropriated or used for the support of schools wherein the distinctive doctrines, creeds or tenets of any particular Christian or other religious sect are promulgated or taught.]d

Sec. 4. The location of the University of Minnesota, as established by existing laws, is hereby confirmed, and said institution is hereby declared to be the University of the State of Minnesota. All Edition: current; Page: [2010] the rights, immunities, franchises and endowments heretofore granted or conferred are hereby perpetuated unto the said university; and all lands which may be granted hereafter by Congress, or other donations for said university purposes, shall vest in the institution referred to in this section.

aSec. 5. The permanent school funds of the State may be loaned upon interest at the rate of five (5) per cent per annum to the several counties or school districts of the State, to be used in the erection of county or school buildings. No such loan shall be made until approved by a board consisting of the governor, the state auditor and the state treasurer, who are hereby constituted an investment board for the purpose of the loans hereby authorized; nor shall any such loan be for an amount exceeding three (3) per cent of the last preceding assessed valuation of the real estate of the county or school district receiving the same. The state auditor shall annually, at the time of certifying the state tax to the several county auditors, also certify to each auditor to whose county, or to any of the school districts of whose county, any such loan shall have been made, the tax necessary to be levied to meet the accruing interest or principal of any such loan, and it shall be the duty of every such county auditor forthwith to levy and extend such tax upon all the taxable property of his county, or of the several school districts, respectively, liable for such loans—as the case may be—and in all such cases the tax so assessed shall be fifty (50) per cent in excess of the amount actually necessary to be raised on account of such accruing principal or interest. It shall be levied, collected and paid into the county and state treasuries in the same manner as state taxes, and any excess collected over the amount of such principal or interest accruing in any given year shall be credited to the general funds of the respective counties or school districts. No change of the boundaries of any school district after the making of any such loan shall operate to withdraw any property from the taxation herein provided for; nor shall any law be passed extending the time of payment of any such principal or interest, or reducing the rate of such interest, or in any manner waiving or impairing any rights of the State in connection with any such loan. Suitable laws, not inconsistent with this amendment, may be passed by the legislature for the purpose of carrying the same into effect.b

cSec. 6. The permanent school and university fund of this state may be invested in the bonds of any county, school district, city, town or village of this state, but no such investment shall be made until approved by the board of commissioners designated by law to regulate the investment of the permanent school fund and the permanent university fund of this state; nor shall such loan or investment be made when the bonds to be issued or purchased would make the entire bonded indebtedness exceed fifteen (15) per cent of the assessed valuation of the taxable real property of the county, school district, city, town or village issuing such bonds; nor shall such loans or indebtedness be made at a lower rate of interest than three (3) Edition: current; Page: [2011] per cent per annum, nor for a shorter period than five (5) years, nor for a longer period than twenty (20) years, and no change of the town, school district, city, village, or of county lines shall relieve the real property in such town, school district, county, village or city in this state at the time of the issuing of such bonds from any liability for taxation to pay such bonds.

Article IX: FINANCES OF THE STATE, AND BANKS AND BANKING

Section 1. All taxes to be raised in this State shall be as nearly equal as may be, and all property on which taxes are to be levied shall have a cash valuation and be equalized and uniform throughout the State; provided, that the legislature may, by general law or special act, authorize municipal corporations to levy assessments for local improvements upon the property fronting upon such improvements, or upon the property to be benefited by such improvements, or both, without regard to a cash valuation, and in such manner as the legislature may prescribe. And, provided further, that for the purpose of defraying the expenses of laying water pipes and supplying any city or municipality with water, the legislature may, by general or special law, authorize any such city or municipality, having a population of five thousand (5,000) or more, to levy an annual tax or assessment upon the lineal foot of all lands fronting on any water main or water pipe laid by such city or municipality within corporate limits of said city for supplying water to the citizens thereof without regard to the cash value of such property, and to empower such city to collect any such tax, assessments or fines, or penalties for failure to pay the same, or any fine or penalty for any violation of the rules of such city or municipality in regard to the use of water, or for any water rate due for the same.a And, provided further, that there may be by law levied and collected a tax upon all inheritances, devises, bequests, legacies and gifts of every kind and description above a fixed and specified sum, of any and all natural persons and corporations. Such a tax above such exempted sum may be uniform, or it may be graded or progressive, but shall not exceed a maximum tax of five per cent.b

Sec. 2. The legislature shall provide for an annual tax sufficient to defray the estimated ordinary expenses of the State for each year; and whenever it shall happen that such ordinary expenses of the State for any year shall exceed the income of the State for such year, the legislature shall provide for levying a tax for the ensuing year, sufficient with other sources of income to pay the deficiency of the preceding year, together with the estimated expenses of such ensuing year. [But no law levying a tax, or making other provisions for the payment of interest or principal of the bonds denominated “Minnesota State Railroad Bonds,” shall take effect or be in force until such law shall have been submitted to a vote of the people of Edition: current; Page: [2012] the State, and adopted by a majority of the electors of the State voting upon the same.]a

Sec. 3. Laws shall be passed taxing all moneys, credits, investments in bonds, stocks, joint stock companies, or otherwise, and also all real and personal property, according to its true value in money; but public burying grounds, public school houses, public hospitals, academies, colleges, universities, and all seminaries of learning, all churches, church property used for religious purposes, and houses of worship, institutions of purely public charity, public property used exclusively for any public purpose, and personal property to an amount not exceeding in value two hundred dollars for each individual, shall, by general laws, be exempt from taxation.b

Sec. 4. Laws shall be passed for taxing the notes and bills discounted or purchased, moneys loaned, and all other property, effects or dues of every description, of all banks and all bankers, so that all property employed in banking shall always be subject to a taxation equal to that imposed on the property of individuals.

cSec. 5. For the purpose of defraying extraordinary expenditures, the State may contract public debts, but such debts shall never, in the aggregate, exceed $250,000; every such debt shall be authorized by law, for some single object, to be distinctly specified therein; and no such law shall take effect until it shall have been passed by the vote of two-thirds of the members of each branch of the legislature, to be recorded by yeas and nays on the journals of each house respectively; and every such law shall levy a tax annually sufficient to pay the annual interest of such debt, and also a tax sufficient to pay the principal of such debt within ten years from the final passage of such law, and shall specially appropriate the proceeds of such taxes to the payment of such principal and interest; and such appropriation and taxes shall not be repealed, postponed or diminished, until the principal and interest of such debt shall have been wholly paid. The State shall never contract any debts for works of internal improvements, or be a party in carrying on such works, except in cases where grants of land or other property shall have been made to the State, especially dedicated by the grant to specific purposes, and in such case the State shall devote thereto the avails of such grants, and may pledge or appropriate the revenues derived from such works in aid of their completion.

Sec. 6. All debts authorized by the preceding section shall be contracted by loan on State bonds of amounts not less than five hundred dollars each on interest, payable within ten years after the final passage of the law authorizing such debt; and such bonds shall not be sold by the State under par. A correct registry of all such bonds shall be kept by the treasurer, in numerical order, so as always to exhibit the number and amount unpaid, and to whom severally made payable.

Sec. 7. The State shall never contract any public debt, unless in time of war, to repel invasion or suppress insurrection, except in the Edition: current; Page: [2013] cases and in the manner provided in the fifth and sixth sections of this article.

Sec. 8. The money arising from any loan made, or debt or liability contracted, shall be applied to the object specified in the act authorizing such debt or liability, or to the repayment of such debt or liability, and to no other purpose whatever.

Sec. 9. No money shall ever be paid out of the treasury of this State except in pursuance of an appropriation by law.

Sec. 10. The credit of the State shall never be given or loaned in aid of any individual, association or corporation. [Nor shall there be any further issue of bonds denominated “Minnesota State Railroad Bonds,” under what purports to be an amendment to section ten (10) of article nine (9) of the Constitution, adopted April fifteenth, eighteen hundred and fifty-eight, which is hereby expunged from the Constitution, saving, excepting and reserving to the State, nevertheless, all rights, remedies, and forfeitures accruing under said amendment.]a

Sec. 11. There shall be published by the treasurer, in at least one newspaper printed at the seat of government, during the first week in January in each year, and in the next volume of the acts of legislature, detailed statements of all moneys drawn from the treasury during the preceding year, for what purpose and to whom paid, and by what law authorized; and also of all moneys received, and by what authority and from whom.

bSec. 12. Suitable laws shall be passed by the legislature for the safe-keeping, transfer and disbursements of the state and school funds; and all officers and other persons charged with the same or any part of the same, or the safe keeping thereof, shall be required to give ample security for all moneys and funds of any kind received by them; to make forthwith and keep an accurate entry of each sum received, and of each payment and transfer; and if any of said officers or other persons shall convert to his own use in any manner or form, or shall loan, with or without interest, or shall deposit in his own name, or otherwise than in the name of the State of Minnesota; or shall deposit in banks or with any person or persons, or exchange for other funds or property, any portion of the funds of the State or of the school funds aforesaid, except in the manner prescribed by law, every such act shall be and constitute an embezzlement of so much of the aforesaid State and school funds, or either of the same, as shall thus be taken, or loaned, or deposited or exchanged, and shall be a felony; and any failure to pay over, produce or account for the State school funds, or any part of the same entrusted to such officer or persons as by law required on demand, shall be held and be taken to be prima facie evidence of such embezzlement.

Sec. 13. The legislature may, by a two-thirds vote, pass a general banking law, with the following restrictions and requirements, viz:

FirstThe legislature shall have no power to pass any law sanctioning in any manner, directly or indirectly, the suspension of specie payments by any person, association or corporation issuing bank notes of any description.

SecondThe legislature shall provide by law for the registry of all Edition: current; Page: [2014] bills or notes issued or put in circulation as money, and shall require ample security in United States stock or State stocks for the redemption of the same in specie; and in case of a depreciation of said stocks, or any part thereof, to the amount of ten per cent or more on the dollar, the bank or banks owning said stocks shall be required to make up said deficiency by additional stocks.

ThirdThe stockholders in any corporation and joint association for banking purposes, issuing bank notes, shall be individually liable in an amount equal to double the amount of stock owned by them for all the debts of such corporation or association; and such individual liability shall continue for one year after any transfer or sale of stock by any stockholder or stockholders.

FourthIn case of the insolvency of any bank or banking association, the bill holders thereof shall be entitled to preference in payment over all other creditors of such bank or association.

FifthAny general banking law which may be passed in accordance with this article shall provide for recording the names of all stockholders in such corporation, the amount of stock held by each, the time of transfer, and to whom transferred.

aSec. 14. (a) For the purpose of erecting and completing buildings for a hospital for the insane, a deaf, dumb and blind asylum, the state prison, the legislature may by law increase the public debt of the State to an amount not exceeding $250,000, in addition to the public debt already heretofore authorized by the Constitution; and for that purpose may provide by law for issuing and negotiating the bonds of the State, and appropriate the money only for the purpose aforesaid; which bonds shall be payable in not less than ten nor more than thirty years from the date of the same, at the option of the State.

aSec. 14. (b) The legislature shall not authorize any county, township, city, or other municipal corporation to issue bonds or to become indebted in any manner to aid in the construction or equipment of any or all railroads to any amount that shall exceed ten per centum of the value of the taxable property within such county, township, city, or other municipal corporation; the amount of such taxable property to be ascertained and determined by the last assessment of said property made for the purpose of state and county taxation previous to the incurring of such indebtedness, Nov. 5, 1872.

bSec. 15. The legislature shall not authorize any county, township, city, or other municipal corporation to issue bonds, or to become indebted in any manner, to aid in the construction or equipment of any or all railroads to any amount that shall exceed five (5) per centum of the value of the taxable property within such county, township, city, or other municipal corporation. The amount of such taxable property to be ascertained and determined by the last assessment of said property made, for the purpose of state and county taxation, previous to the incurring of such indebtedness.

cSec. 16. For the purpose of lending aid in the construction and improvement of public highways and bridges, there is hereby created a fund to be known as the “State Road and Bridge Fund.” Said Edition: current; Page: [2015] fund shall include all moneys accruing from the income derived from investments in the internal improvement land fund, or that may hereafter accrue to said fund, and shall also include all funds accruing to any state road and bridge fund, however provided.

The legislature is authorized to add to such fund for the purpose of constructing or improving roads and bridges of this State, by providing, in its discretion, for an annual tax levy upon the property of this State of not to exceed in any year one-twentieth (1-20) of one (1) mill on all the taxable property within the State.

The legislature is also authorized to provide for the appointment, by the governor of the State, of a board to be known as the “State Highway Commission,” consisting of three (3) members, who shall perform such duties as shall be prescribed by law without salary or compensation other than personal expenses.

Such commission shall have general superintendence of the construction of State roads and bridges and shall use such fund in the construction thereof and distribute the same in the several counties in the State upon an equitable basis. Provided further, that no county shall receive in any year more than three (3) per cent or less than one-half (½) of one (1) per cent of the total fund thus provided and expended during such year; and, provided further, that no more than one-third (⅓) of such fund accruing in any year shall be expended for bridges, and in no case shall more than one-third (⅓) of the cost of constructing or improving any road or bridge be paid by the State from such fund.

aSec. 17. The legislature may impose, or provide for the imposition of, upon the property within the State of any and all owners or operators, whether corporate or individual, or otherwise, of any and all sleeping, parlor and drawing room cars, or any or either of the same, which run in, into or through this State; also upon the property within this state of any and all telegraph and telephone companies, or owners, whose lines are in, or extend in, into or through this State; also upon the property within this State of all express companies, or owners, or any or either of the same, doing business in this State; also upon the property within this State of all domestic insurance companies of this State of any kind; also upon the property within this State of all owners or operators of any and all mines or of mineral ores situated in this State; also upon the property within this State of all boom companies or owners, and of all ship builders or owners doing business in this State or having a port therein; provided, that this act shall not apply to property owned by railroad companies, their lands and other property; and upon the property of either or any of such companies or owners a tax, as uniform as reasonably may be with the taxes imposed upon similar property in said State, or upon the earnings thereof within this State, but may be graded or progressive, or both, and in providing for such tax, or in providing for ascertaining the just and true value of such property, it shall be competent for the legislature, in either or all of such cases, to impose such tax, upon any or all property thereof within this State, and in either case by taking as the basis of such imposition the proportionate business, earnings, mileage or quantity of production Edition: current; Page: [2016] or property now or hereafter existing of any such companies, persons or owners, transacted or existing in this State, in relation to the entire business, mileage or quantity of production or property of such companies, persons or owners as aforesaid; or in such other manner, or by such other method, as the legislature may determine; but the proceeds of such taxes upon mining property shall be distributed between the State and the various political subdivisions thereof wherein the same is situated in the same proportion as the proceeds of taxes upon real property are distributed; provided further, that nothing in this act contained shall operate to authorize the assessment or taxation of land or ordinary business blocks or property owned by any such corporation, person, firm or company, except in the manner provided by the ordinary methods of taxation.

Article X: OF CORPORATIONS HAVING NO BANKING PRIVILEGES

Section 1. The term “Corporation,” as used in this article, shall be construed to include all associations and joint stock companies having any of the powers and privileges not possessed by individuals or partnerships, except such as embrace banking privileges, and all corporations shall have the right to sue, and shall be liable to be sued in all courts, in like manner as natural persons.

Sec. 2. No corporations shall be formed under special acts, except for municipal purposes.

Sec. 3. Each stockholder in any corporation [excepting those organized for the purpose of carrying on any kind of manufacturing or mechanical business shall be liable to the amount of stock held or owned by him.]abc

Sec. 4. Lands may be taken for public way, for the purpose of granting to any corporation the franchise of way for public use. In all cases, however, a fair and equitable compensation shall be paid for such land, and the damages arising from the taking of the same; but all corporations being common carriers, enjoying the right of way in pursuance of the provisions of this section, shall be bound to carry the mineral, agricultural and other productions of manufacturers on equal and reasonable terms.

Edition: current; Page: [2017]

Article XI: COUNTIES AND TOWNSHIPS

Section 1. The legislature may from time to time establish and organizea new counties; but no new county shall contain less than four hundred square miles; nor shall any county be reduced below that amount; and all laws changing county lines in counties already organized, or for removing county seats, shall, before taking effect, be submitted to the electors of the county or counties to be affected thereby, at the next general election after the passage thereof, and be adopted by a majority of such electors. Counties now established may be enlarged, but not reduced below four hundred (400) square miles.

Sec. 2. The legislature may organize any city into a separate county, when it has attained a population of 20,000 inhabitants, without reference to geographical extent, when a majority of the electors of the county in which such city may be situated, voting thereon, shall be in favor of a separate organization.

Sec. 3. Laws may be passed providing for the organization for municipal and other town purposes, of any congressional or fractional townships in the several counties in the State, provided that when a township is divided by county lines or does not contain one hundred inhabitants, it may be attached to one or more adjoining townships or parts of townships for the purposes aforesaid.

Sec. 4. Provision shall be made by law for the election of such county or township officers as may be necessary.

Sec. 5. Any county and township organization shall have such powers of local taxation as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 6. No money shall be drawn from any county or township treasury except by authority of law.

Sec. 7.b That the county of Manomin is hereby abolished, and that the territory heretofore comprising the same shall constitute and be a part of the county of Anoka.

Article XII: OF THE MILITIA

Section 1. It shall be the duty of the legislature to pass such laws for the organization, discipline and service of the militia of the State as may be deemed necessary.

Edition: current; Page: [2018]

Article XIII: IMPEACHMENT AND REMOVAL FROM OFFICE

Section 1. The governor, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor, attorney general, and the judges of the supreme and district courts, may be impeached for corrupt conduct in office, or for crimes and misdemeanors; but judgment in such case shall not extend further than to removal from office and disqualification to hold and enjoy any office of honor, trust or profit in this State. The party convicted thereof shall nevertheless be liable and subject to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment, according to law.

Sec. 2. The legislature of this State may provide for the removal of inferior officers from office, for malfeasance or nonfeasance in the performance of their duties.

Sec. 3. No officer shall exercise the duties of his office after he shall have been impeached and before his acquittal.

Sec. 4. On the trial of an impeachment against the governor, the lieutenant governor shall not act as a member of the court.

Sec. 5. No person shall be tried on impeachment before he shall have been served with a copy thereof at least twenty days previous to the day set for trial.

Article XIV: AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION

Section 1.a Whenever a majority of both houses of the legislature shall deem it necessary to alter or amend this Constitution, they may propose such alterations or amendments, which proposed amendments shall be published with the laws which have been passed at the same session, and said amendments shall be submitted to the people for their approval or rejection at any general election, and if it shall appear, in a manner to be provided by law, that a majority of all the electors voting at said election shall have voted for and ratified such alterations or amendments, the same shall be valid to all intents and purposes as a part of this Constitution. If two or more alterations or amendments shall be submitted at the same time, it shall be so regulated that the voters shall vote for or against each separately.

Sec. 2. Whenever two-thirds of the members elected to each branch of the legislature shall think it necessary to call a convention to revise this Constitution, they shall recommend to the electors to vote at the next general election for members of the legislature, for or against a convention; and if a majority of all the electors voting at said election shall have voted for a convention, the legislature shall, at their next session, provide by law for calling the same. The convention shall consist of as many members as the House of Representatives, who shall be chosen in the same manner, and shall meet within three months after their election for the purpose aforesaid.

Edition: current; Page: [2019]

Article XV: MISCELLANEOUS SUBJECTS

Section 1. The seat of government of the State shall be at the city of St. Paul, but the legislature, at their first or any future session, may provide by law for a change of the seat of government by a vote of the people, or may locate the same upon the land granted by Congress for a seat of government to the State; and in the event of the seat of government being removed from the city of St. Paul to any other place in the State, the capitol building and grounds shall be dedicated to an institution for the promotion of science, literature and the arts, to be organized by the legislature of the State, and of which institution the Minnesota Historical Society shall always be a department.

Sec. 2. Persons residing on Indian lands within the State shall enjoy all the rights and privileges of citizens, as though they lived in any other portion of the State, and shall be subject to taxation.

Sec. 3. The legislature shall provide for a uniform oath or affirmation to be administered at elections, and no person shall be compelled to take any other or different form of oath to entitle him to vote.

Sec. 4. There shall be a seal of the State, which shall be kept by the secretary of state, and be used by him officially, and shall be called the great seal of the State of Minnesota, and shall be attached to all the official acts of the governor (his signature to acts and resolves of the legislature excepted) requiring authentication. The legislature shall provide for an appropriate device and motto for said seal.

Sec. 5. The territorial prison, as located under existing laws, shall, after the adoption of this Constitution, be and remain one of the state prisons of the State of Minnesota.

Schedule

Section 1. That no inconvenience may arise by reason of a change from a territorial to a permanent state of government, it is declared that all rights, actions, prosecutions, judgments, claims and contracts, as well of individuals as of bodies corporate, shall continue as if no change had taken place; and all process which may be issued under the authority of the Territory of Minnesota previous to its admission into the Union of the United States shall be as valid as if issued in the name of the State.

Sec. 2. All laws now in force in the Territory of Minnesota not repugnant to this Constitution shall remain in force until they expire by their own limitation, or be altered or repealed by the legislature.

Sec. 3. All fines, penalties or forfeitures accruing to the Territory of Minnesota shall inure to the State.

Sec. 4. All recognizances heretofore taken, or which may be taken before the change from a territorial to a permanent state government shall remain valid, and shall pass to and may be prosecuted in the name of the State; and all bonds executed to the governor of the Territory, or to any other officer or court in his or their official capacity, shall pass to the governor or state authority and their successors Edition: current; Page: [2020] in office, for the uses therein respectively expressed, and may be sued for and recovered accordingly; and all the estate of property, real, personal or mixed, and all judgments, bonds, specialties, choses in action, and claims and debts, of whatsoever description, of the Territory of Minnesota, shall inure to and vest in the State of Minnesota, and may be sued for and recovered in the same manner and to the same extent by the State of Minnesota as the same could have been by the Territory of Minnesota. All criminal prosecutions and penal actions which may have arisen, or which may arise before the change from a territorial to a state government, and which shall then be pending, shall be prosecuted to judgment and execution in the name of the State. All offenses committed against the laws of the Territory of Minnesota, before the change from a territorial to a state government, and which shall not be prosecuted before such change, may be prosecuted in the name and by the authority of the State of Minnesota with like effect as though such change had not taken place, and all penalties incurred shall remain the same as if this Constitution had not been adopted. All actions at law and suits in equity which may be pending in any of the courts of the Territory of Minnesota, at the time of a change from a territorial to a state government, may be continued and transferred to any court of the State which shall have jurisdiction of the subject matter thereof.

Sec. 5. All territorial officers, civil or military, now holding their offices under the authority of the United States, or of the Territory of Minnesota shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices until they shall be superseded by the authority of the State.

Sec. 6. The first session of the legislature of the State of Minnesota shall commence on the first Wednesday of December next, and shall be held at the capitol, in the city of St. Paul.

Sec. 7. The laws regulating the election and qualification of all district, county and precinct officers shall continue and be in force until the legislature shall otherwise provide by law.

Sec. 8. The president of this convention shall, immediately after the adjournment thereof, cause this Constitution to be deposited in the office of the governor of the Territory; and if, after the submission of the same to a vote of the people, as hereinafter provided, it shall appear that it has been adopted by a vote of the people of the State, then the governor shall forward a certified copy of the same, together with an abstract of the votes polled for and against the said Constitution, to the president of the United States, to be by him laid before the Congress of the United States.

Sec. 9. For the purposes of the first election, the State shall constitute one district, and shall elect three members to the House of Representatives of the United States.

Sec. 10. For the purposes of the first election for members of the State Senate and House of Representatives, the State shall be divided into senatorial and representative districts, as follows, viz: First district, Washington county; Second district, Ramsey county; Third district, Dakota county; Fourth district, so much of Hennepin county as lies west of the Mississippi; Fifth district, Rice county; Sixth district, Goodhue county; Seventh district, Scott county; Eighth district, Olmsted county; Ninth district, Fillmore county; Tenth district, Houston county; Eleventh district, Winona county; Twelfth district, Wabasha county; Thirteenth district, Mower and Dodge Edition: current; Page: [2021] counties; Fourteenth district, Freeborn and Faribault counties; Fifteenth district, Steele and Waseca counties; Sixteenth district, Blue Earth and Le Sueur counties; Seventeenth district, Nicollet and Brown counties; Eighteenth district, Sibley, Renville and McLeod counties; Nineteenth district, Carver and Wright counties; Twentieth district, Benton, Stearns and Meeker counties; Twenty-first district, Morrison, Crow Wing and Mille Lacs counties; Twenty-second district, Cass, Pembina and Todd counties; Twenty-third district, so much of Hennepin county as lies east of the Mississippi; Twenty-fourth district, Sherburne, Anoka and Manomin counties; Twenty-fifth district, Chisago, Pine and Isanti counties; Twenty-sixth district, Buchanan, Carlton, St. Louis, Lake and Itasca counties.

Sec. 11. The counties of Brown, Stearns, Todd, Cass, Pembina and Renville, as applied in the preceding section, shall not be deemed to include any territory west of the State line, but shall be deemed to include all counties and parts of counties east of said line as were created out of the territory of either, at the last session of the legislature.

Sec. 12. The senators and representatives at the first election shall be apportioned among the several senatorial and representative districts as follows, to wit:

Senators. Representatives. Senators. Representatives.
1st district 2 3 14th district 1 3
2d district 3 6 15th district 1 4
3d district 2 5 16th district 1 3
4th district 2 4 17th district 1 3
5th district 2 3 18th district 1 3
6th district 1 4 19th district 1 3
7th district 1 3 20th district 1 3
8th district 2 4 21st district 1 1
9th district 2 6 22d district 1 1
10th district 2 3 23d district 1 2
11th district 2 4 24th district 1 1
12th district 1 3 25th district 1 1
13th district 2 3 26th district 1 1
37 80

Sec. 13. The returns from the Twenty-second district shall be made to and canvassed by the judges of election at the precinct of Otter Tail City.

Sec. 14. Until the legislature shall otherwise provide, the State shall be divided into judicial districts as follows, viz:

The counties of Washington, Chisago, Manomin, Anoka, Isanti, Pine, Buchanan, Carlton, St. Louis and Lake shall constitute the First judicial district.

The county of Ramsey shall constitute the Second judicial district.

The counties of Houston, Winona, Fillmore, Olmsted and Wabasha shall constitute the Third judicial district.

The counties of Hennepin, Carver, Wright, Meeker, Sherburne, Benton, Stearns, Morrison, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs, Itasca, Pembina, Todd and Cass shall constitute the Fourth judicial district.

Edition: current; Page: [2022]

The counties of Dakota, Goodhue, Scott, Rice, Steele, Waseca, Dodge, Mower and Freeborn shall constitute the Fifth judicial district.

The counties of Le Sueur, Sibley, Nicollet, Blue Earth, Faribault, McLeod, Renville, Brown, and all other counties in the State not included within the other districts, shall constitute the Sixth judicial district.

Sec. 15. Each of the foregoing enumerated judicial districts may, at the first election, elect one prosecuting attorney for the district.

Sec. 16. Upon the second Tuesday, the thirteenth day of October, 1857, an election shall be held for members of the House of Representatives of the United States, governor, lieutenant governor, supreme and district judges, members of the legislature, and all other officers designated in this Constitution, and also for the submission of this Constitution to the people, for their adoption or rejection.

Sec. 17. Upon the day so designated as aforesaid every free white male inhabitant over the age of twenty-one years, who shall have resided within the limits of the State for ten days previous to the day of said election, may vote for all officers to be elected under this Constitution at such election, and also for or against the adoption of this Constitution.

Sec. 18. In voting for or against the adoption of this Constitution, the words, “For Constitution,” or “Against Constitution,” may be written or printed on the ticket of each voter, but no voter shall vote for or against this Constitution, on a separate ballot from that cast by him for officers to be elected at said election under this Constitution; and if upon the canvass of the vote so polled it shall appear that there was a greater number of votes polled for than against said Constitution, then this Constitution shall be deemed to be adopted as the Constitution of the State of Minnesota, and all the provisions and obligations of this Constitution, and of the schedule thereunto attached, shall thereafter be valid to all intents and purposes as the Constitution of said State.

Sec. 19. At said election the polls shall be opened, the elections held, returns made, and certificates issued, in all respects as provided by law for opening, closing and conducting elections and making returns of the same, except as hereinbefore specified, and excepting also that polls may be opened and elections held at any point or points in any of the counties where precincts may be established as provided by law, ten days previous to the day of election, not less than ten miles from the place of voting in any established precinct.

Sec. 20. It shall be the duty of the judges and clerks of election, in addition to the returns required by law for each precinct, to forward to the secretary of the Territory, by mail, immediately after the close of the election, a certified copy of the poll book containing the name of each person who has voted in the precinct and the number of votes polled for and against the adoption of this Constitution.

Sec. 21. The returns of said election for and against this Constitution, and for all state officers and members of the House of Representatives of the United States, shall be made, and certificates issued in the manner now prescribed by law for returning votes given for delegates to Congress; and the returns for all district officers, judicial, legislative or otherwise, shall be made to the register of deeds Edition: current; Page: [2023] of the senior county in each district, in the manner prescribed by law, except as otherwise provided. The returns for all officers elected at large shall be canvassed by the governor of the Territory, assisted by Joseph R. Brown and Thomas J. Galbraith, at the time designated by law for canvassing the vote for delegates to Congress.

Sec. 22. If, upon canvassing the votes for and against the adoption of this Constitution, it shall appear that there has been polled a greater number of votes against than for it, then no certificate of election shall be issued for any State or district officer provided for in this Constitution, and no State organization shall have validity within the limits of the Territory, until otherwise provided for and until a Constitution for a State government shall have been adopted by the people.

Edition: current; Page: [iii] Edition: current; Page: [2025]

MISSISSIPPIa

For organic acts relating to the land now included within Mississippi see in other parts of this works as follows:

Proprietary Charter of Carolina, 1663 (North Carolina, p. 2743).
Proprietary Proposals, 1663 (North Carolina, p. 2753).
Proprietary Charter of Carolina, 1665 (North Carolina, p. 2756).
Fundamental Constitutions of Carolina, 1669 (North Carolina, p. 2772).
Proprietary Charter of Georgia, 1732 (Georgia, p. 765).
Constitution of South Carolina, 1776 (South Carolina, p. 3241).
Constitution of Georgia, 1777 (Georgia, p. 777).
Constitution of South Carolina, 1778 (South Carolina, p. 3248).
Constitution of Georgia, 1789 (Georgia, p. 785).
Territory South of Ohio River, 1790 (Tennessee, p. 3409).
Proclamation Respecting Occupation of Territory, 1810 (Louisiana, p. 1375).

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MISSISSIPPI—1798b

[Fifth Congress, Second Session]

An Act for an amicable settlement of the limits with the State of Georgia, and authorizing the establishment of a government in the Mississippi Territory

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the President of the United States be, and he hereby is, authorized to appoint three commissioners, any two of whom shall have power to adjust and determine, with such commissioners as may be appointed under the legislative authority of the State of Georgia, all interfering claims of the United States and that State, to territory situate west of the river Chattahouchee, north of the thirty-first degree of north latitude, and south of the cession made to the United States by South Carolina; and also to receive any proposals for the relinquishment or cession of the whole or any part of the other territory claimed by the State of Georgia, and out of the ordinary jurisdiction thereof.

Edition: current; Page: [2026]

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That all the lands thus ascertained as the property of the United States shall be disposed of in such manner as shall be hereafter directed by law; and the nett proceeds thereof shall be applied to the sinking and discharging the public debt of the United States, in the same manner as the proceeds of the other public lands in the territory northwest of the river Ohio.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That all that tract of country bounded on the west by the Mississippi, on the north by a line to be drawn due east from the mouth of the Yazoo to the Chattahouchee River; on the east by the river Chattahouchee; and on the south by the thirty-first degree of north latitude, shall be, and hereby is, constituted one district, to be called the Mississippi Territory; and the President of the United States is hereby authorized to establish therein a government in all respects similar to that now exercised in the territory northwest of the Ohio, excepting and excluding the last article of the ordinance made for the government thereof by the late Congress, on the thirteenth day of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, to appoint all the necessary officers therein, who shall respectively receive the same compensations for their services, to be paid in the same manner as is by law established for similar officers in the territory northwest of the river Ohio; and the powers, duties, and emoluments of a superintendent of Indian affairs for the southern department shall be united with those of governor: Provided, always, That if the President of the United States should find it most expedient to establish this government in the recess of Congress, he shall nevertheless have full power to appoint and commission all officers herein authorized; and their commissions shall continue in force until the end of the session of Congress next ensuing the establishment of the government.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the territory hereby constituted one district, for the purpose of government, may, at the discretion of Congress, be hereafter divided into two districts, with separate territorial governments in each, similar to that established by this act.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the establishment of this government shall in no respect impair the right of the State of Georgia, or of any person or persons, either to the jurisdiction or the soil of the said Territory; but the rights and claims of the said State, and all persons interested, are hereby declared to be as firm and available as if this act had never been made.

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That from and after the establishment of the said government, the people of the aforesaid Territory shall be entitled to and enjoy all and singular the rights, privileges, and advantages granted to the people of the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio in and by the aforesaid ordinance of the thirteenth day of July in the year one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, in as full and ample a manner as the same are possessed and enjoyed by the people of the said last-mentioned Territory.

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That from and after the establishment of the aforesaid government, it shall not be lawful for any person or persons to import or bring into the said Mississippi Territory, from any port or place without the limits of the United States, Edition: current; Page: [2027] or to cause or procure to be so imported or brought, or knowingly to aid or assist in so importing or bringing, any slave or slaves; and that every person so offending, and being thereof convicted before any court within the said Territory, having competent jurisdiction, shall forfeit and pay for each and every slave so imported or brought the sum of three hundred dollars; one moiety for the use of the United States, and the other moiety for the use of any person or persons who shall sue for the same; and that every slave so imported or brought shall thereupon become entitled to and receive his or her freedom.

Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That the sum of ten thousand dollars be, and hereby is, appropriated, for the purpose of enabling the President of the United States to carry into effect the provisions of this act; and that the said sum be paid out of any moneys in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated.

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MISSISSIPPI—1800

[Sixth Congress, First Session]

An Act supplemental to the Act intituled “An Act for an amicable settlement of limits with the State of Georgia, and authorizing the establishment of a government in the Mississippi Territory”

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That so much of the ordinance of Congress of the thirteenth of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, and of the act of Congress of the seventh of August, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-nine, providing for the government of the territory of the United States northwest of the river Ohio, as relates to the organization of a general assembly therein and prescribes the powers thereof, shall forthwith operate and be in force in the Mississippi Territory: Provided, That until the number of free male inhabitants of full age in the said Territory shall amount to five thousand, there shall not be returned to the general assembly more than nine representatives.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That until the number of free male inhabitants of full age in the Mississippi Territory shall amount to five thousand, the county of Adams shall be entitled to choose four representatives to the general assembly, the county of Pickering four, and the Tensaw and Tombigbee settlements one.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the first election for representatives to the general assembly shall be on the fourth Monday in July next, and that all subsequent elections shall be regulated by the legislature.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of the governor of the Mississippi Territory to cause the said election to be holden on the day aforesaid, at the most convenient place in the counties and settlements aforesaid, and to nominate a proper officer or officers to preside at and conduct the same, and to return to him the names of the persons who may have been duly elected.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the representatives shall be convened by the governor at the town of Natchez on the fourth Monday in September next.

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Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That so soon as the number of free male inhabitants of full age shall amount to or exceed five thousand, the number of representatives to the general assembly shall be determined and the apportionment made in the way prescribed in the ordinance.

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That nothing in this act shall in any respect impair the right of the State of Georgia to the jurisdiction, or of the said State, or of any person or persons, to the soil of the said Territory; but the rights and claims of the said State and all persons interested are hereby declared to be as firm and available as if this act had never been made.

Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That the general assembly shall meet at least once in every year, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday of December, unless they shall by law appoint a different day: Provided, That the governor shall have power on extraordinary occasions to convene the general assembly.

Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That neither house, during the sesion of the general assembly, shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.

Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That it shall be lawful for the commissioners appointed, or who may hereafter be appointed, on the part of the United States, in pursuance of the act intituled “An act for an amicable settlement of limits with the State of Georgia, and authorizing the establishment of a government in the Mississippi Territory,” or any two of them, finally to settle, by compromise, with the commissioners which have been or may be appointed by the State of Georgia, any claims mentioned in said act, and to receive in behalf of the United States a cession of any lands therein mentioned, or of the jurisdiction thereof, on such terms as to them shall appear reasonable. And, also, that the said commissioners on the part of the United States, or any two of them, be authorized to inquire into the claims which are or shall be made by settlers, or any other persons whatsoever, to any part of the aforesaid lands, and to receive from such settlers and claimants any propositions of compromise which may be made by them, and lay a full statement of the claims and the propositions which may be made to them by the settlers or claimants to any part of the said lands, together with their opinion thereon, before Congress, for their decision thereon, as soon as may be: Provided. That the settlement shall be made and completed before the fourth day of March, one thousand eight hundred and three: And provided also, That the said commissioners shall not contract for the payment of any money from the Treasury of the United States to the State of Georgia, other than the proceeds of the same lands.

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TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MISSISSIPPI—1808

[Tenth Congress, First Session]

An Act extending the right of suffrage in the Mississippi Territory, and for other purposes

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That every free white male person in the Mississippi Territory above the age of twenty-one years, having been a citizen of the United States and resident in the said Territory one year next preceding an election of representatives, and who has a legal or equitable title to a tract of land by virtue of any act of Congress or who may become the purchaser of any tract of land from the United States of the quantity of fifty acres, or who may hold in his own right a town-lot of the value of one hundred dollars within the said Territory, shall be entitled to vote for representatives to the general assembly of said Territory.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the general assembly of the Territory aforesaid shall have power to apportion the representatives of the several counties therein, or which may hereafter be established therein, according to the number of free white male inhabitants above the age of twenty-one years in such counties: Provided, That there be not more than twelve nor less than ten of the whole number of representatives, any act or acts to the contrary notwithstanding, until there shall be six thousand free male white inhabitants of full age in said Territory; after which time the number of representatives shall be regulated agreeably to the ordinance for the government thereof.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the citizens of the said Territory entitled to vote for representatives to the general assembly thereof shall, at the time of electing their representatives to the said general assembly, also elect one Delegate from the said Territory to the Congress of the United States, who shall possess the same powers heretofore granted to the Delegates from the several Territories of the United States, anything in the ordinance for the government of said Territory to the contrary notwithstanding.

ENABLING ACT FOR MISSISSIPPI—1817

[Fourteenth Congress, Second Session]

An Act to enable the people of the western part of the Mississippi Territory to form a constitution and State government, and for the admission of such State into the Union, on an equal footing with the original States.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the inhabitants of the western part of the Mississippi Territory be, and they hereby are, authorized to form for themselves a constitution and State government, and to assume such name as they shall deem proper; and Edition: current; Page: [2030] the said State, when formed, shall be admitted into the Union upon the same footing with the original States, in all respects whatever.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the said State shall consist of all the territory included within the following boundaries, to wit: Beginning on the river Mississippi at the point where the southern boundary-line of the State of Tennessee strikes the same; thence east along the said boundary-line to the Tennessee River; thence up the same to the mouth of Bear Creek; thence by a direct line to the northwest corner of the county of Washington; thence due south to the Gulf of Mexico; thence westwardly, including all the islands within six leagues of the shore, to the most eastern junction of Pearl River with Lake Borgne; thence up said river to the thirty-first degree of north latitude; thence west, along the said degree of latitude, to the Mississippi River; thence up the same to the beginning.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That all free white male citizens of the United States, who shall have arrived at the age of twenty-one years, and resided within the said Territory at least one year previous to the time of holding the election, and shall have paid a county or territorial tax, and all persons having in other respects the legal qualifications to vote for representatives in the general assembly of the Territory, be, and they are hereby, authorized to choose representatives to form a convention, who shall be apportioned among the several counties within the said Territory as follows, to wit: From the county of Warren, two representatives; from the county of Claiborne, four representatives; from the county of Jefferson, four representatives; from the county of Adams, eight representatives; from the county of Franklin, two representatives; from the county of Wilkinson, six representatives; from the county of Amite, six representatives; from the county of Pike, four representatives; from the county of Lawrence, two representatives; from the county of Marion, two representatives; from the county of Hancock, two representatives; from the county of Wayne, two representatives; from the county of Greene, two representatives; from the county of Jackson, two representatives; and the election of the representatives aforesaid shall be holden on the first Monday and Tuesday in June next, throughout the several counties above mentioned, and shall be conducted in the same manner as is prescribed by the laws of said Territory, regulating elections therein for members of the house of representatives.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the members of the convention, thus duly elected, be, and they hereby are, authorized to meet at the town of Washington, on the first Monday of July next; which convention, when met, shall first determine, by a majority of the whole number elected, whether it be, or be not, expedient at that time to form a constitution and State government for the people within the said Territory; and if it be determined to be expedient, the convention shall be, and hereby are, authorized to form a constitution and State government: Provided, That the same, when formed, shall be republican, and not repugnant to the principles of the ordinance of the thirteenth of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, between the people and States of the territory northwest of the river Ohio, so far as the same has been extended to the said territory by the articles of agreement between the United States and Edition: current; Page: [2031] the State of Georgia, or of the Constitution of the United States: And provided also, That the said convention shall provide, by an ordinance irrevocable without the consent of the United States, that the people inhabiting the said Territory do agree and declare that they forever disclaim all right or title to the waste or unappropriated lands lying within the said Territory, and that the same shall be and remain at the sole and entire disposition of the United States; and, moreover, that each and every tract of land sold by Congress shall be and remain exempt from any tax laid by the order, or under the authority, of the State, whether for State, county, township, parish, or any other purpose whatever, for the term of five years, from and after the respective days of the sales thereof; and that the lands belonging to citizens of the United States, residing without the said State, shall never be taxed higher than the lands belonging to persons residing therein; and that no taxes shall be imposed on lands, the property of the United States; and that the river Mississippi, and the navigable rivers and waters leading into the same, or into the Gulf of Mexico, shall be common highways, and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of the said State as to other citizens of the United States, without any tax, duty, impost, or toll therefor, imposed by the said State.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That five per cent. of the net proceeds of the lands lying within the said Territory, and which shall be sold by Congress from and after the first day of December next, after deducting all expenses incident to the same, shall be reserved for making public roads and canals; of which three-fifths shall be applied to those objects within the said State, under the direction of the legislature thereof, and two-fifths to the making of a road or roads leading to the said State, under the direction of Congress: Provided, That the application of such proceeds shall not be made until after payment is completed of the one million two hundred and fifty thousand dollars due to the State of Georgia, in consideration of the cession to the United States, nor until the payment of all the stock which has been or shall be created by the act entitled “An act providing for the indemnification of certain claimants of public lands in the Mississippi Territory,” shall be completed: And provided also, That the said five per cent. shall not be calculated on any part of such proceeds as shall be applied to the payment of the one million two hundred and fifty thousand dollars due to the State of Georgia, in consideration of the cession to the United States, or in payment of the stock which has or shall be created by the act entitled “An act providing for the indemnification of certain claimants of public lands in the Mississippi Territory.”

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That, until the next general census shall be taken, the said State shall be entitled to one Representative in the House of Representatives of the United States.

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ADMISSION OF MISSISSIPPI INTO THE UNION—1817

[Fifteenth Congress, First Session]

Resolution for the admission of the State of Mississippi into the Union

Whereas, in pursuance of an act of Congress passed on the first day of March, one thousand eight hundred and seventeen, entitled “An act to enable the people of the western part of the Mississippi Territory to form a constitution and State government, and for the admission of such State into the Union on an equal footing with the original States,” the people of the said Territory did, on the fifteenth day of August, in the present year, by a convention called for that purpose, form for themselves a constitution and State government, which constitution and State government so formed is republican, and in conformity to the principles of the articles of compact between the original States and the people and States in the Territory northwest of the river Ohio, passed on the thirteenth day of July, one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven—

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the State of Mississippi shall be one, and is hereby declared to be one, of the United States of America, and admitted into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, in all respects whatever.

CONSTITUTION OF MISSISSIPPI—1817*a

We, the representatives of the people inhabiting the western part of the Mississippi territory, contained within the following limits, to wit: Beginning on the river Mississippi, at the point where the southern boundary-line of the State of Tennessee strikes the same; thence east, along the said boundary-line, to the Tennessee River; thence up the same to the mouth of Bear Creek; thence, by a direct line, to the northwest corner of the county of Washington; thence due south to the Gulf of Mexico; thence westwardly, including all islands within six leagues of the shore, to the most eastern junction of Pearl River with Lake Borgne; thence up said river to the thirty-first degree of north latitude; thence west, along the said degree of latitude, to the Mississippi River; thence up the same to the beginning, assembled in convention, at the town of Washington, on Monday, the seventh day of July, one thousand eight hundred and seventeen, in pursuance of an act of Congress, entitled “An act, to enable the people of the western part of the Mississippi Territory to form a constitution and State government; and for the admission of such State into the Union, on an equal footing with the original States;” in order to secure to the citizens thereof the rights of life, liberty, and property; Edition: current; Page: [2033] do ordain and establish the following constitution and form of government, and do mutually agree with each other to form ourselves into a free and independent State, by the name of the State of Mississippi.

Article I: DECLARATION OF RIGHTS

That the general, great, and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and established, we declare—

Section 1. That all freemen, when they form a social compact, are equal in rights; and that no man or set of men are entitled to exclusive, separate public emoluments or privileges, from the community, but in consideration of public services.

Sec. 2. That all political power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their benefit; and, therefore, they have at all times an unalienable and indefeasible right to alter or abolish their form of government, in such manner as they may think expedient.

Sec. 3. The exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination, shall forever be free to all persons in this State: Provided, That the right hereby declared and established shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness, or justify practices inconsistent with the peace and safety of this State.

Sec. 4. No preference shall ever be given by law to any religious sect or mode of worship.

Sec. 5. That no person shall be molested for his opinions on any subject whatever, nor suffer any civil or political incapacity, or acquire any civil or political advantage, in consequence of such opinions, except in cases provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 6. Every citizen may freely speak, write, and publish his sentiments on all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty.

Sec. 7. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech or of the press.

Sec. 8. In all prosecutions or indictments for libels, the truth may be given in evidence; and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts, under the direction of the court.

Sec. 9. That the people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and possessions, from unreasonable seizures or searches; and that no warrant to search any place, or to seize any person or things, shall issue without describing them as nearly as may be, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.

Sec. 10. That in all criminal prosecutions, the accused hath a right to be heard by himself and counsel; to demand the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted by the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; and, in all prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy public trial, by an impartial jury of the county; that he cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself, nor can he be deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by due course of law.

Sec. 11. No person shall be accused, arrested, or detained, except in cases ascertained by law, and according to the forms which the same has prescribed; and no person shall be punished but in virtue of a Edition: current; Page: [2034] law established and promulgated prior to the offence, and legally applied.

Sec. 12. That no person shall, for any indictable offence, be proceeded against criminally by information, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or the militia, when in actual service, or by leave of the court, for misdemeanor in office.

Sec. 13. No person shall, for the same offence, be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb, nor shall any person’s property be taken or applied to public use, without the consent of his representatives, and without just compensation being made therefor.

Sec. 14. That all courts shall be open, and every person for any injury done him in his lands, goods, person, or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law; and right and justice administered without sale, denial, or delay.

Sec. 15. That no power of suspending laws shall be exercised except by the legislature or its authority.

Sec. 16. That excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel punishments inflicted.

Sec. 17. That all prisoners shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient securities, except for capital offences, when the proof is evident or the presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended unless when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it.

Sec. 18. That the person of a debtor, where there is not strong presumption of fraud, shall not be detained in prison after delivering up his estate for the benefit of his creditors, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 19. That no ex post facto law, nor law impairing the obligation of a contract, shall be made.

Sec. 20. That no person shall be attainted of treason or felony by the legislature.

Sec. 21. That the estates of suicides shall descend or vest as in cases of natural death; and if any person shall be killed by casualty, there shall be no forfeiture by reason thereof.

Sec. 22. That the citizens have a right, in a peaceable manner, to assemble together, for their common good, and to apply to those invested with the powers of government for redress of grievances or other proper purposes, by petition, address, or remonstrance.

Sec. 23. Every citizen has a right to bear arms, in defence of himself and the State.

Sec. 24. No standing army shall be kept up, without the consent of the legislature; and the military shall, in all cases and at all times, be in a strict subordination to the civil power.

Sec. 25. That no soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.

Sec. 26. That no hereditary emoluments, privileges, or honors shall ever be granted or conferred in this State.

Sec. 27. No citizen of this State shall be exiled, or prevented from emigrating, on any pretence whatever.

Sec. 28. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 29. No person shall be debarred from prosecuting or defending any civil cause, for or against him or her self, before any tribunal in this State, by him or her self or counsel, or both.

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CONCLUSION

To guard against transgressions of the high powers herein delegated, we declare that everything in this article is excepted out of the general powers of government, and shall forever remain inviolate; and that all laws contrary thereto, or to the following provisions, shall be void.

Article II: DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS

Section 1. The powers of the government of the State of Mississippi shall be divided into three distinct departments, and each of them confided to a separate body of magistracy, to wit: those which are legislative, to one; those which are executive, to another; and those which are judicial, to another.

Sec. 2. No person, or collection of persons, being of one of those departments, shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others, except in the instances hereinafter expressly directed or permitted.

Article III: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. Every free white male person of the age of twenty-one years or upwards, who shall be a citizen of the United States, and shall have resided in this State one year next preceding an election, and the last six months within the county, city, or town in which he offers to vote, and shall be enrolled in the militia thereof, except exempted by law from military service; or, having the aforesaid qualifications of citizenship and residence, shall have paid a State or county tax, shall be deemed a qualified elector. But no elector shall be entitled to vote, except in the county, city, or town (entitled to separate representation) in which he may reside at the time of the election.

Sec. 2. Electors shall, in all cases, except in those of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections, and in going to and returning from the same.

Sec. 3. The first election shall be by ballot, and all future elections by the people shall be regulated by law.

Sec. 4. The legislative power of this State shall be vested in two distinct branches; the one to be styled the senate, the other the house of representatives, and both together, “the general assembly of the State of Mississippi.” And the style of their laws shall be “Be it enacted by the senate and house of representatives of the State of Mississippi in general assembly convened.

Sec. 5. The members of the house of representatives shall be chosen by the qualified electors, and shall serve for the term of one year from the day of the commencement of the general election, and no longer.

Sec. 6. The representatives shall be chosen every year, on the first Monday and the day following in August.

Sec. 7. No person shall be a representative unless he be a citizen of the United States and shall have been an inhabitant of this State two years next preceding his election, and the last year thereof a Edition: current; Page: [2036] resident of the county, city, or town for which he shall be chosen, and shall have attained to the age of twenty-two years; and also, unless he shall hold, in his own right, within this State, one hundred and fifty acres of land, or an interest in real estate of the value of five hundred dollars, at the time of his election, and for six months previous thereto.

Sec. 8. Elections for representatives for the several counties shall be held at the places of holding their respective courts, or in the several election districts into which the legislature may divide any county: Provided, That when it shall appear to the legislature that any city or town hath a number of free white inhabitants equal to the ratio then fixed, such city or town shall have a separate representation, according to the number of free white inhabitants therein, which shall be retained so long as such city or town shall contain a number of free white inhabitants equal to the existing ratio; and thereafter, and during the existence of the right of separate representation in such city or town, elections for the county in which such city or town entitled to a separate representation is situated shall not be held in such city or town: And provided, That if the residuum or fraction of any city or town entitled to separate representation shall, when added to the residuum in the county in which it may lie, be equal to the ratio fixed by law for one representative, then the aforesaid county, city, or town having the largest residuum shall be entitled to such representation: And provided also, That when there are two or more counties adjoining, which have residuums over and above the ratio then fixed by law, if said residuums, when added together, will amount to such ratio, in that case one representative shall be added to that county having the largest residuum.

Sec. 9. The general assembly shall, at their first meeting, and in the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty, and in not less than every three nor more than every five years thereafter, cause an enumeration to be made of all the free white inhabitants of the State: and the whole number of representatives shall, at the several periods of making such enumeration, be fixed by the general assembly, and apportioned among the several counties, cities, or towns entitled to separate representation according to the number of free white inhabitants in each; and shall not be less than twenty-four, nor greater than thirty-six, until the number of free white inhabitants shall be eighty thousand; and after that event, at such ratio that the whole number of representatives shall never be less than thirty-six nor more than one hundred: Provided, however, That each county shall always be entitled to at least one representative.

Sec. 10. The whole number of senators shall, at the several periods of making the enumeration before mentioned, be fixed by the general assembly, and apportioned among the several districts to be established by law, according to the number of free white taxable inhabitants in each, and shall never be less than one-fourth nor more than one-third of the whole number of representatives.

Sec. 11. The senators shall be chosen by the qualified electors for three years; and, on their being convened in consequence of the first election, they shall be divided by lot, from their respective districts, into three classes, as nearly equal as can be. The seats of the senators of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the first year; Edition: current; Page: [2037] and of the second class, at the expiration of the second year; and of the third class, at the expiration of the third year; so that one-third thereof may be anually chosen thereafter.

Sec. 12. Such mode of classifying new additional senators shall be observed as will, as nearly as possible, preserve an equality of numbers in each class.

Sec. 13. When a senatorial district shall be composed of two or more counties, it shall not be entirely separated by any county belonging to another district; and no county shall be divided in forming a district.

Sec. 14. No person shall be a senator unless he be a citizen of the United States, and shall have been an inhabitant of this State four years next preceding his election, and the last year thereof a resident of the district for which he shall be chosen, and shall have attained to the age of twenty-six years; and also, unless he shall hold, in his own right, within this State, three hundred acres of land, or an interest in real estate of the value of one thousand dollars, at the time of his election, and for six months previous thereto.

Sec. 15. The house of representatives, when assembled, shall choose a speaker and its other officers; and the senate shall choose its officers, except the president; and each house shall judge of the qualifications and elections of its own members; but a contested election shall be determined in such manner as shall be directed by law. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide.

Sec. 16. Each house may determine the rules of its own proceedings, punish members for disorderly behavior, and, with the consent of two-thirds, expel a member, but not a second time for the same cause, and shall have all other powers necessary for a branch of the legislature of a free and independent State.

Sec. 17. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same, excepting such parts as in its judgment may require secrecy; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall, at the desire of any three members present, be entered on the journals.

Sec. 18. When vacancies happen in either house, the governor, or the person exercising the powers of the governor, shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies.

Sec. 19. Senators and representatives shall in all cases, except of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of the general assembly, and in going to and returning from the same; allowing one day for every twenty miles, such member may reside from the place at which the general assembly, is convened.

Sec. 20. Each house may punish by imprisonment, during the session, any person, not a member, for disrespectful or disorderly behavior in its presence, or for obstructing any of its proceedings: Provided, Such imprisonment shall not at any one time exceed forty-eight hours.

Sec. 21. The doors of each house shall be open, except on such occasions as, in the opinion of the house, may require secrecy.

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Sec. 22. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which they may be sitting.

Sec. 23. Bills may originate in either house, and be amended, altered, or rejected by the other; but no bill shall have the force of a law until, on three several days, it be read in each house, and free discussion be allowed thereon, unless, in cases of urgency, four-fifths of the house in which the bill shall be depending may deem it expedient to dispense with this rule; and every bill having passed both houses shall be signed by the speaker and president of their respective houses.

Sec. 24. All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the house of representatives, but the senate may amend or reject them as other bills.

Sec. 25. Each member of the general assembly shall receive from the public treasury a compensation for his services which may be increased or diminished by law; but no increase of compensation shall take effect during the session at which such increase shall have been made.

Sec. 26. No senator or representative shall, during the term for which he shall have been elected, nor for one year thereafter, be appointed to any civil office of profit under this State which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased, during such term; except such offices as may be filled by elections by the people; and no member of either house of the general assembly shall, after the commencement of the first session of the legislature after his election and during the remainder of the term for which he is elected, be eligible to any office or place the appointment to which may be made in whole or in part by either branch of the general assembly.

Sec. 27. No judge of any court of law or equity, secretary of state, attorney-general, clerk of any court of record, sheriff, or collector, or any person holding a lucrative office under the United States (the office of postmaster excepted) or this State shall be eligible to the general assembly: Provided, That officers in the militia, to which there is attached no annual salary, or the office of justice of the peace, or of the quorum, shall not be deemed lucrative.

Sec. 28. No person who hath heretofore been, or hereafter may be, a collector or holder of public moneys shall have a seat in either house of the general assembly, until such person shall have accounted for and paid into the treasury all sums for which he may be accountable.

Sec. 29. The first election for senators and representatives shall be general throughout the State, and shall be held on the first Monday and Tuesday in September next; and thereafter there shall be an annual election for senators to fill the places of those whose term of service may have expired.

Sec. 30. The first session of the general assembly shall commence on the first Monday in October next, and be held at the city of Natchez, and thereafter at such place as may be directed by law; and thereafter the general assembly shall meet on the first Monday in November in every year, and at no other period, unless directed by law, or provided for by this constitution.

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Article IV: EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The supreme executive power of this State shall be vested in a governor, who shall be elected by the qualified electors, and shall hold his office for two years from the time of his installation, and until his successor be duly qualified.

Sec. 2. The returns of every election for governor shall be sealed up and transmitted to the seat of government, directed to the secretary of State, who shall deliver them to the speaker of the house of representatives, at the next ensuing session of the general assembly, during the first week of which session the said speaker shall open and publish them in the presence of both houses of the general assembly. The person having the highest number of votes shall be governor; but if two or more shall be equal and highest in votes, one of them shall be chosen governor by the joint ballot of both houses.

Contested elections for governor shall be determined by both houses of the general assembly, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 3. The governor shall be at least thirty years of age, shall have been a citizen of the United States for twenty years, shall have resided in this State at least five years next preceding the day of his election, and shall be seized in his own right of a freehold estate of six hundred acres of land, or of real estate of the value of two thousand dollars, at the time of his election and twelve months previous thereto.

Sec. 4. He shall at stated times receive a compensation for his services, which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which he shall have been elected.

Sec. 5. He shall be commander-in-chief of the army and navy of this State, and of the militia, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States.

Sec. 6. He may require information, in writing, from the officers in the executive department on any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 7. He may, on extraordinary occasions, convene the general assembly at the seat of government, or at a different place if that shall have become, since their last adjournment, dangerous from an enemy or from contagious disorders, and in case of disagreement between the two houses, with respect to the time of adjournment, adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the next annual meeting of the general assembly.

Sec. 8. He shall, from time to time, give to the general assembly information of the state of the government, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall deem expedient.

Sec. 9. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.

Sec. 10. In all criminal and penal cases, except in those of treason and impeachment, he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons and remit fines and forfeitures, under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by law. In cases of treason he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, but may respite the sentence until the end of the next session of the general assembly.

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Sec. 11. All commissions shall be in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, be sealed with the State seal, and signed by the governor, and attested by the secretary of state.

Sec. 12. There shall be a seal of this State, which shall be kept by the governor, and used by him officially, and shall be called the great seal of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 13. When a vacancy shall happen in any office during the recess of the general assembly, the governor shall have power to fill the same, by granting a commission, which shall expire at the end of the next session of the general assembly, except in cases otherwise directed by this constitution.

Sec. 14. A secretary of state shall be appointed, who shall continue in office during the term of two years. He shall keep a fair register of all the official acts and proceedings of the governor, and shall, when required, lay the same, and all papers, minutes, and vouchers relative thereto, before the general assembly, and shall perform such other duties as may be required of him by law.

Sec. 15. Every bill which shall have passed both houses of the general assembly shall be presented to the governor; if he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the objections at large upon the journals and proceed to reconsider it; if, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered; if approved by two-thirds of that house it shall become a law; but in such cases the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the members voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journals of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within six days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall be a law, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the general assembly, by their adjournment, prevent its return, in which case it shall not be a law.

Sec. 16. Every order, resolution, or vote, to which the concurrence of both houses may be necessary, except on questions of adjournment, shall be presented to the governor, and before it shall take effect be approved by him, or, being disapproved, shall be repassed by both houses, according to the rules and limitations prescribed in case of a bill.

Sec. 17. The appointment of all officers, not otherwise directed by this constitution, shall be by the joint vote of both houses of the general assembly; the votes shall be given viva voce, and recorded in the public journal of each house: Provided, That the general assembly be authorized to provide by law for the appointment of all inspectors, collectors, and their deputies, surveyors of highways, constables, and such other inferior officers, whose jurisdiction may be confined within the limits of the county.

Sec. 18. There shall be also a lieutenant-governor, who shall be chosen at every election for a governor, by the same persons, in the same manner, continue in office for the same time, and possess the same qualifications. In voting for governor and lieutenant-governor, the electors shall distinguish whom they vote for as governor and whom as lieutenant-governor.

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Sec. 19. The lieutenant-governor shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate, and have, when in committee of the whole, a right to debate and vote on all questions, and, when the senate is equally divided, to give the casting vote.

Sec. 20. In case of the death, resignation, refusal to serve, or removal from office of the governor, or of his impeachment or absence from the State, the lieutenant-governor shall exercise the powers and authority appertaining to the office of governor, until another be chosen at the next periodical election for governor, and be duly qualified; or until the governor impeached or absent shall be acquitted or return.

Sec. 21. Whenever the government shall be administered by the lieutenant-governor, or he shall be unable to attend as president of the senate, the senate shall elect one of their own members as president pro tempore.

And if, during the vacancy of the office of governor, the lieutenant-governor shall die, resign, refuse to serve, or be removed from office; or if he shall be impeached, or absent from the State, the president of the senate pro tempore shall, in like manner, administer the government, until he shall be superseded by a governor or lieutenant-governor. The lieutenant-governor shall, whilst he acts as president of the senate, receive for his service the same compensation which shall, for the same period, be allowed to the speaker of the house of representatives, and no more; and during the time he administers the government as governor, shall receive the same compensation which the governor would have received had he been employed in the duties of his office, and no more.

Sec. 22. The president pro tempore of the senate shall, during the time he administers the government, receive, in like manner, the same compensation which the governor would have received had he been employed in the duties of his office, and no more.

Sec. 23. If the lieutenant-governor shall be required to administer the government, and shall, whilst in such administration, die, resign, or be absent from the State, during the recess of the general assembly, it shall be the duty of the secretary of state, for the time being, to convene the senate for the purpose of choosing a president pro tempore.

Sec. 24. A sheriff, and one or more coroners, shall be elected in each county by the qualified electors thereof, who shall hold their offices for two years, unless sooner removed.

Sec. 25. A State treasurer and an auditor of public accounts shall be annually appointed.

MILITIA

Section 1. The general assembly shall provide by law for organizing and disciplining the militia of this State, in such manner as they shall deem expedient, not incompatible with the Constitution and laws of the United States, in relation thereto.

Sec. 2. Officers of the militia shall be elected or appointed in such manner as the legislature shall from time to time direct, and shall be commissioned by the governor.

Sec. 3. Those persons who conscientiously scruple to bear arms shall not be compelled to do so, but shall pay an equivalent for personal service.

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Sec. 4. The governor shall have power to call forth the militia to execute the laws of the State, to suppress insurrections, and repel invasions.

Article V: JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The judicial power of this State shall be vested in one supreme court, and such superior and inferior courts of law and equity as the legislature may, from time to time, direct and establish.

Sec. 2. There shall be appointed in this State not less than four nor more than eight judges of the supreme and superior courts, who shall receive for their services a compensation which shall be fixed by law, and shall not be diminished during their continuance in office: Provided, That the judge whose decision is under consideration in the supreme court shall not constitute one of the court to determine the question on such decision; but it shall be the duty of such judge to report to the supreme court the reasons upon which his opinion was founded.

Sec. 3. The State shall be divided into convenient districts, and each district shall contain not less than three nor more than six counties. For each district there shall be appointed a judge, who shall, after his appointment, reside in the district for which he is appointed.

Sec. 4. The superior court shall have original jurisdiction in all matters, civil and criminal, within this State; but in civil cases, only where the matter or sum in controversy exceeds fifty dollars.

Sec. 5. A superior court shall be held in each county in the State at least twice in every year. The judges of the several superior courts may hold courts for each other when they may deem it expedient, or as they may be directed by law.

Sec. 6. The legislature shall have power to establish a court or courts of chancery, with exclusive original equity jurisdiction; and, until the establishment of such court or courts, the said jurisdiction shall be vested in the superior courts respectively.

Sec. 7. The legislature shall have power to establish in each county within this State a court of probate for the granting of letters testamentary, and of administration, or orphans’ business, for county police, and for the trial of slaves.

Sec. 8. A competent number of justices of the peace shall be appointed in and for each county, in such mode, and for such term of office, as the legislature shall direct. Their jurisdiction, in civil cases, shall be limited to causes in which the amount in controversy shall not exceed fifty dollars. And in all cases tried by a justice of the peace, right of appeal shall be secured, under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 9. The judges of the several courts of this State shall hold their offices during good behavior. And for wilful neglect of duty, or other reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient ground for an impeachment, the governor shall remove any of them on the address of two-thirds of each house of the general assembly: Provided, however, That the cause or causes for which such removal shall be required shall be stated at length in such address, and on the journals of Edition: current; Page: [2043] each house: And provided further, That the judge so intended to be removed shall be notified, and admitted to a hearing in his own defence, before any vote for such address shall pass.

Sec. 10. No person who shall have arrived at the age of sixty-five years shall be appointed to, or continue in, the office of judge in this State.

Sec. 11. Each court shall appoint its own clerk, who shall hold his office during good behavior, but shall be removable therefrom for neglect of duty, or misdemeanor in office, by the supreme court, which court shall determine both the law and the fact: Provided, That the clerk so appointed shall have been a resident of the county in which he is clerk at least six months previous to his appointment.

Sec. 12. The judges of the supreme and superior court shall, by virtue of their offices, be conservators of the peace throughout the State.

Sec. 13. The style of all process shall be, “The State of Mississippi,” and all prosecution shall be carried on in the name and by the authority of “the State of Mississippi,” and shall conclude, “against the peace and dignity of the same.”

Sec. 14. There shall be an attorney-general for the State, and as many district attorneys as the general assembly may deem necessary, who shall hold their offices for the term of four years, and shall receive for their services a compensation, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

IMPEACHMENTS

Section 1. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeaching.

Sec. 2. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate; when sitting for that purpose the senators shall be on oath or affirmation. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.

Sec. 3. The governor and civil officers shall be liable to impeachment for any misdemeanor in office; but judgment in such cases shall not extend further than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust, or profit under this State; but the party convicted shall, nevertheless, be liable and subject to indictment, trial, and punishment, according to law, as in other cases.

Article VI: GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1. Members of the general assembly and all officers, executive and judicial, before they enter on the execution of their respective offices, shall take the following oath or affirmation, to wit: “I solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the State of Mississippi, so long as I continue a citizen thereof, and that I will faithfully discharge, to the best of my abilities, the duties of the office of ———, according to law: So help me God.”

Sec. 2. The general assembly shall have power to pass such penal laws to suppress the evil practice of duelling, extending to disqualification from office or the tenure thereof, as they may deem expedient.

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Sec. 3. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against it, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or his own confession in open court.

Sec. 4. Every person shall be disqualified from holding an office or place of honor or profit, under the authority of this State, who shall be convicted of having given or offered any bribe to procure his election.

Sec. 5. Laws shall be made to exclude from office, and from suffrage, those who shall thereafter be convicted of bribery, perjury, forgery, or other high crimes or misdemeanors. The privilege of free suffrage shall be supported by laws regulating elections, and prohibiting, under adequate penalties, all undue influence thereon, from power, bribery, tumult, or other improper conduct.

Sec. 6. No person who denies the being of God or a future state of rewards and punishments shall hold any office in the civil department of this State.

Sec. 7. Ministers of the gospel being, by their profession, dedicated to God and the care of souls, ought not to be diverted from the great duties of their functions; therefore, no minister of the gospel, or priest of any denomination whatever, shall be eligible to the office of governor, lieutenant-governor, or to a seat in either branch of the general assembly.

Sec. 8. No money shall be drawn from the treasury, but in consequence of an appropriation made by law, nor shall any appropriation of money, for the support of an army, be made for a longer term than one year; and a regular statement and account of the receipts and expenditures of all public money shall be published annually.

Sec. 9. No bank shall be incorporated by the legislature without the reservation of a right to subscribe for, in behalf of the State, at least one-fourth part of the capital stock thereof, and the appointment of a proportion of the directors equal to the stock subscribed for.

Sec. 10. The general assembly shall pass no law impairing the obligation of contracts, prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty-one, on account of the rate of interest, fairly agreed on in writing between the contracting parties, for a bona-fide loan of money; but they shall have power to regulate the rate of interest where no special contract exists in relation thereto.

Sec. 11. The general assembly shall direct by law in what manner and in what courts suits may be brought against the State.

Sec. 12. All officers of the State, the term of whose appointment is not otherwise directed by this constitution, shall hold their offices during good behavior.

Sec. 13. Absence on business of this State, or of the United States, or on a visit, or necessary private business, shall not cause a forfeiture of a residence once obtained.

Sec. 14. It shall be the duty of the general assembly to regulate by law the cases in which deductions shall be made from the salaries of public officers for neglect of duty in their official capacity, and the amount of such deduction.

Sec. 15. No member of Congress, nor any person holding any office of profit or trust under the United States, or either of them, the office Edition: current; Page: [2045] of postmaster excepted, or under any foreign power, shall hold or exercise any office of trust under this State.

Sec. 16. Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government, the preservation of liberty, and the happiness of mankind, schools, and the means of education, shall forever be encouraged in this State.

Sec. 17. Divorces from the bonds of matrimony shall not be granted, but in cases provided for by law, by suit in chancery: Provided, That no decree for such divorce shall have effect until the same shall be sanctioned by two-thirds of both branches of the general assembly.

Sec. 18. Returns of all elections by the people shall be made to the secretary of state.

Sec. 19. No new county shall be established by the general assembly which shall reduce the county or counties, or either of them, from which it may be taken to a less content than five hundred and seventy-six square miles, nor shall any new county be laid off of less contents.

Sec. 20. That the general assembly shall take measures to preserve from unnecessary waste or damage such lands as are or may hereafter be granted by the United States for the use of schools, within each township in this State, and apply the funds which may be raised from such lands, by rent or lease, in strict conformity to the object of such grant; but no lands granted for the use of such township schools shall ever be sold by any authority in this State.

SLAVES

Section 1. The general assembly shall have no power to pass laws for the emancipation of slaves, without the consent of their owners, unless where a slave shall have rendered to the State some distinguished service, in which case the owner shall be paid a full equivalent for the slaves so emancipated. They shall have no power to prevent immigrants to this State from bringing with them such persons as are deemed slaves by the laws of any one of the United States, so long as any person of the same age or description shall be continued in slavery by the laws of this State: Provided, That such person or slave be the bona-fide property of such immigrants; And provided also, That laws may be passed to prohibit the introduction into the State of slaves who may have committed high crimes in other States. They shall have power to pass laws to permit the owners of slaves to emancipate them, saving the rights of creditors, and preventing them from becoming a public charge. They shall have full power to prevent slaves from being brought into this State as merchandise; and also to oblige the owners of slaves to treat them with humanity, to provide for them necessary clothing and provision, to abstain from all injuries to them extending to life or limb, or in case of their neglect or refusal to comply with the directions of such laws, to have such slave or slaves sold for the benefit of the owner or owners.

Sec. 2. In the prosecution of slaves for crimes, no inquest by a grand jury shall be necessary, but the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law; except that, in capital cases, the general assembly shall have no power to deprive them of an impartial trial by a petit jury.

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MODE OF REVISING THE CONSTITUTION

That whenever two-thirds of the general assembly shall deem it necessary to amend or change this constitution, they shall recommend to the electors, at the next election for members of the general assembly, to vote for or against a convention, and if it shall appear that a majority of the citizens of the State, voting for representatives, have voted for a convention, the general assembly shall, at their next session, call a convention, to consist of as many members as there may be in the general assembly, to be chosen by the qualified electors, in the manner and at the times and places of choosing members of the general assembly, which convention shall meet within three months after the said election, for the purpose of revising, amending, or changing the constitution.

Schedule

Section 1. That no inconvenience may arise from a change of territorial to a permanent State government, it is declared, that all rights, actions, prosecutions, claims, and contracts, as well of individuals as of bodies-corporate, shall continue as if no such change had taken place.

Sec. 2. All fines, penalties, forfeitures, and escheats, accruing to the Mississippi Territory, within the limits of this State, shall inure to the use of the State.

Sec. 3. The validity of all bonds and recognizances executed to the governor of the Mississippi Territory shall not be impaired by the change of government, but may be sued for and recovered in the name of the governor of the State of Mississippi and his successors in office; and all criminal or penal actions, arising or now depending within the limits of this State, shall be prosecuted to judgment and execution in the name of the said State. All causes of action arising to individuals, and all suits at law or in equity, now depending in the several courts within the limits of this State, and not already barred by law, may be commenced in, or transferred to, such court as may have jurisdiction thereof. Bonds, recognizances, and other papers and writings, properly belonging to the eastern section of the Mississippi Territory, not comprised within the limits of this State, shall be transferred to the offices to which they severally belong.

Sec. 4. All officers, civil and military, now holding commissions under the authority of the United States or of the Mississippi Territory, within this State, shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices under the authority of this State, until they shall be superseded under the authority of this constitution, and shall receive from the treasury of this State the same compensation which they heretofore received for their services, in proportion to the time they shall be so employed. The governor shall have power to fill vacancies by commissions, to expire so soon as elections or appointments can be made to such office by the authority of this constitution.

Sec. 5. All laws and parts of laws now in force in the Mississippi Territory, and not repugnant to the provisions of this constitution, shall continue and remain in force as the laws of this State, until they Edition: current; Page: [2047] expire by their own limitation, or shall be altered or repealed by the legislature thereof.

Sec. 6. Every free white male person, above the age of twenty-one years, who shall be a citizen of the United States and resident in this State at the time of the adoption of this constitution, shall be deemed a qualified elector, at the first election to be held in this State, anything in the constitution to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 7. The president of this convention shall issue writs of election, directed to the sheriffs of the several counties, requiring them to cause an election to be held for a governor, lieutenant-governor, Representative to the Congress of the United States, members of the general assembly, and sheriffs of the respective counties, at the respective places of elections in said counties, except in the county of Warren, in which county the election shall be held at the court-house instead of the place provided by law, on the first Monday and the day following in September next, which election shall be conducted in the manner prescribed by the existing election laws of the Mississippi Territory, and the said governor, lieutenant-governor, and members of the general assembly, then duly elected, shall continue to discharge the duties of their respective offices for the time prescribed by this constitution, and until their successors be duly qualified.

Sec. 8. Until the first enumeration shall be made, as directed by this constitution, the county of Warren shall be entitled to one representative, the county of Claiborne to two representatives, the county of Jefferson to two representatives, the county of Adams to four representatives, the county of Franklin to one representative, the county of Wilkinson to three representatives, the county of Amite to three representatives, the county of Pike to two representatives, the county of Lawrence to one representative, the county of Marion to one representative, the county of Hancock to one representative, the county of Greene to one representative, the county of Wayne to one representative, the county of Jackson to one representative. The counties of Warren and Claiborne shall be entitled to one senator, the county of Adams to one senator, the county of Jefferson to one senator, the county of Wilkinson to one senator, the county of Amite to one senator, the counties of Franklin and Pike to one senator, the counties of Lawrence, Marion, and Hancock to one senator, the counties of Greene, Wayne, and Jackson to one senator.

Sec. 9. The governor may appoint and commission an additional judge, or one of the former judges of the superior court, whose commission shall expire so soon as appointments can be made under the constitution. It shall be the duty of the judge so appointed, or one of the former territorial judges, to hold superior courts in the counties of Jackson, Greene, Wayne, and Hancock at the time heretofore prescribed by law: Provided, That if either of the former territorial judges, in addition to his duty in the western counties, perform such duty, and no additional judge be appointed, he shall receive an extra compensation, proportioned to the amount of his salary and term of service rendered. If an additional judge be appointed, he shall receive the same compensation for his services as the other judges of the superior court.

Sec. 10. The sheriff of Warren County shall, within ten days after Edition: current; Page: [2048] the election, make return of the number of votes for senator in his county to the sheriff of Claiborne County, who shall be the returning officer for the district. The sheriff of Pike County shall, within ten days after the election, make return of the number of votes for senator in his county to the sheriff of Franklin County, who shall be the returning officer for the district. The sheriffs of Hancock and Lawrence Counties shall, within ten days after the election, make return of the number of votes for senator in their respective counties to the sheriff of Marion County, who shall be the returning officer for the district. The sheriffs of Jackson and Wayne Counties shall, within ten days after the election, make return of the number of votes for senator in their respective counties to the sheriff of Greene County, who shall be the returning officer for the district.

Ordinance

Whereas it is required by the act of Congress under which this convention is assembled that certain provisions should be made by an ordinance of this convention:

Therefore this convention, for and in behalf of the people inhabiting this State, do ordain, agree, and declare that they forever disclaim all right or title to the waste or unappropriated lands lying within the State of Mississippi, and that the same shall be and remain at the sole and entire disposition of the United States, and, moreover, that each and every tract of land sold by Congress shall be and remain exempt from any tax laid by the order or under the authority of this State, whether for State, county, township, parish, or other purposes whatever, for the term of five years, from and after the respective days of sale thereof, and that the lands belonging to the citizens of the United States, residing without this State, shall never be taxed higher than the lands belonging to persons residing within the same; that no taxes shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States, and that the river Mississippi, and the navigable rivers and waters leading into the same, or into the gulf of Mexico, shall be common highways and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of this State as to other citizens of the United States, without any duty, tax, impost, or toll therefor, imposed by this State; and this ordinance is hereby declared irrevocable, without the consent of the United States.

Done in convention, at the town of Washington, the fifteenth day of August, in the year of our Lord 1817, and in the forty-second year of the Independence of the United States of America.

David Holmes, President.
Louis Winston, Secretary.
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CONSTITUTION OF MISSISSIPPI—1832a

Article I: DECLARATION OF RIGHTS

That the general, great, and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and established, we declare—

Section 1. That all freemen, when they form a social compact, are equal in rights; and that no men, or set of men, are entitled to exclusive, separate public emoluments or privileges from the community, but in consideration of public services.

Sec. 2. That all political power is inherent in the people, and all free governments are founded on their authority and established for their benefit, and therefore they have at all times an unalienable and indefeasible right to alter or abolish their form of government, in such manner as they may think expedient.

Sec. 3. The exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without discrimination, shall forever be free to all persons in this State: Provided, That the right hereby declared and established shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness, or justify practices inconsistent with the peace and safety of the State.

Sec. 4. No preference shall ever be given by law to any religious sect or mode of worship.

Sec. 5. That no person shall be molested for his opinions on any subject whatever, nor suffer any civil or political incapacity, or acquire any civil or political advantage, in consequence of such opinions, except in cases provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 6. Every citizen may freely speak, write, and publish his sentiments on all subjects; being responsible for the abuse of that liberty.

Sec. 7. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech, or of the press.

Sec. 8. In all prosecutions or indictments for libel, the truth may be given in evidence; and if it shall appear to the jury that the matter charged as libellous is true, and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted; and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts.

Sec. 9. That the people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and possessions from unreasonable seizures and searches; and that no warrant to search any place, or to seize any person or thing, shall issue without describing the place to be searched, and the person or thing to be seized, as nearly as may be, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.

Sec. 10. That in all criminal prosecutions the accused hath a right to be heard, by himself or counsel, or both; to demand the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted by the witnesses against him; to have a compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; and in all prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy Edition: current; Page: [2050] and public trial by an impartial jury of the county where the offence was committed; that he cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself, nor can he be deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by due course of law.

Sec. 11. No person shall be accused, arrested, or detained, except in cases ascertained by law, and according to the form which the same has prescribed; and no person shall be punished but in virtue of a law established and promulgated prior to the offence, and legally applied.

Sec. 12. That no person shall, for any indictable offence, be proceeded against criminally by information; except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia when in actual service, or by leave of the court, for misdemeanor in office.

Sec. 13. No person shall, for the same offence, be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall any person’s property be taken or applied to public use without the consent of the legislature, and without just compensation being first made therefor.

Sec. 14. That all courts shall be open, and every person, for an injury done him in his lands, goods, person, or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and right and justice administered without sale, denial, or delay.

Sec. 15. That no power of suspending laws shall be exercised, except by the legislature, or its authority.

Sec. 16. That excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel punishments inflicted.

Sec. 17. That all prisoners shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient securities, except for capital offences where the proof is evident or the presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when, in a case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it.

Sec. 18. That the person of a debtor, when there is not strong presumption of fraud, shall not be detained in prison, after delivering up his estate for the benefit of his creditors, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 19. No conviction for any offence shall work corruption of blood or forfeiture of estate. The legislature shall pass no bill of attainder, ex post facto law, nor law for impairing the obligation of contracts.

Sec. 20. No property qualification for eligibility to office, or for the right of suffrage, shall ever be required by law in this State.

Sec. 21. That the estate of suicides shall descend or vest as in cases of natural death; and if any person shall be killed by casualty, there shall be no forfeiture by reason thereof.

Sec. 22. That the citizens have a right, in a peaceable manner, to assemble together for their common good, and to apply to those vested with the powers of government for redress of grievances, or other proper purposes, by petition, address, or remonstrance.

Sec. 23. Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defence of himself and of the State.

Sec. 24. No standing army shall be kept up without the consent of the legislature; and the military shall in all cases, and at all times, be in strict subordination to the civil power.

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Sec. 25. That no soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house, without the consent of the owner, or in time of war, but in manner to be prescribed by law.

Sec. 26. That no hereditary emoluments, privileges, or honors shall ever be granted or conferred in this State.

Sec. 27. Emigration from this State shall not be prohibited, nor shall any free white citizen of this State ever be exiled under any pretence whatever.

Sec. 28. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 29. No person shall be debarred from prosecuting or defending any civil cause for or against him or her self before any tribunal in this State, by him or her self, or counsel, or both.

Sec. 30. No person shall ever be appointed or elected to any office in this State for life or during good behavior; but the tenure of all offices shall be for some limited period of time, if the person appointed or elected thereto shall so long behave well.

CONCLUSION

The guard against transgressions of the high powers herein delegated, we declare that everything in this article is excepted out of the general powers of government, and shall forever remain inviolate; and that all laws contrary thereto, or to the following provisions, shall be void.

Article II: DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS

Section 1. The powers of the government of the State of Mississippi shall be divided into three distinct departments, and each of them confided to a separate body of magistracy, to wit: those which are legislative to one, those which are judicial to another, and those which are executive to another.

Sec. 2. No person or collection of persons, being of one of these departments, shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others, except in the instances hereinafter expressly directed or permitted.

Article III: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. Every free white male person of the age of twenty-one years or upwards, who shall be a citizen of the United States, and shall have resided in this State one year next preceding an election, and the last four months within the county, city, or town in which he offers to vote, shall be deemed a qualified elector. And any such qualified elector who may happen to be in any county, city, or town other than that of his residence at the time of an election, or who shall have removed to any county, city, or town within four months preceding the election, from any county, city, or town in which he would have been a qualified elector had he not so removed, may vote for any State or district officer, or Member of Congress, for whom he could have Edition: current; Page: [2052] voted in the county of his residence, or the county, city, or town from which he may have so removed.

Sec. 2. Electors shall, in all cases, except in those of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance on elections, and going to and returning from the same.

Sec. 3. The first election shall be by ballot, and all future elections by the people shall be regulated by law.

Sec. 4. The legislative power of this State shall be vested in two distinct branches; the one to be styled “the senate,” the other “the house of representatives;” and both together “the legislature of the State of Mississippi.” And the style of their laws shall be, “Be it enacted by the legislature of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 5. The members of the house of representatives shall be chosen by the qualified electors, and shall serve for the term of two years from the day of the commencement of the general election, and no longer.

Sec. 6. The representatives shall be chosen every two years, on the first Monday and day following in November.

Sec. 7. No person shall be a representative unless he be a citizen of the United States, and shall have been an inhabitant of this State two years next preceding his election, and the last year thereof a resident of the county, city, or town for which he shall be chosen, and shall have attained the age of twenty-one years.

Sec. 8. Elections for representatives for the several counties shall be held at the places of holding their respective courts, or in the several election-districts into which the county may be divided: Provided, That when it shall appear to the legislature that any city or town hath a number of free white inhabitants equal to the ratio then fixed, such city or town shall have a separate representation, according to the number of free white inhabitants therein, which shall be retained so long as such city or town shall contain a number of free white inhabitants equal to the existing ratio; and thereafter and during the existence of the right of separate representation in such city or town, elections for the county in which such city or town entitled to a separate representation is situated shall not be held in such city or town: And provided, That if the residuum or fraction of any city or town entitled to separate representation shall, when added to the residuum in the county in which it may lie, be equal to the ratio fixed by law for one representative, then the aforesaid county, city, or town having the largest residuum shall be entitled to such representation: And provided also, That when there are two or more counties adjoining, which have residuums over and above the ratio then fixed by law, if said residuums, when added together, will amount to such ratio, in that case one representative shall be added to that county having the largest residuum.

Sec. 9. The legislature shall at their first session, and at periods of not less than every four, nor more than every six years, until the year 1845, and thereafter at periods of not less than every four, nor more than every eight years, cause an enumeration to be made of all the free white inhabitants of this State, and the whole number of representatives shall, at the several periods of making such enumeration, be fixed by the legislature, and apportioned among the several counties, cities, or towns entitled to separate representation, according to the number of free white inhabitants in each, and shall not be less Edition: current; Page: [2053] than thirty-six nor more than one hundred: Provided, however, That each county shall always be entitled to at least one representative.

Sec. 10. The whole number of senators shall, at the several periods of making the enumeration before mentioned, be fixed by the legislature, and apportioned among the several districts to be established by law, according to the number of free white inhabitants in each, and shall never be less than one-fourth nor more than one-third of the whole number of representatives.

Sec. 11. The senators shall be chosen, by the qualified electors, for four years, and on their being convened in consequence of the first election, they shall be divided by lot from their respective districts into two classes, as nearly equal as can be; and the seats of the senators of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year.

Sec. 12. Such mode of classifying new additional senators shall be observed as will as nearly as possible preserve an equality of numbers in each class.

Sec. 13. When a senatorial district shall be composed of two or more counties, it shall not be entirely separated by any county belonging to another district; and no county shall be divided in forming a district.

Sec. 14. No person shall be a senator unless he be a citizen of the United States, and shall have been an inhabitant of this State four years next preceding his election, and the last year thereof a resident of the district for which he shall be chosen, and have attained the age of thirty years.

Sec. 15. The house of representatives, when assembled, shall choose a speaker and its other officers, and the senate shall choose a president and its officers, and each house shall judge of the qualifications and elections of its own members; but a contested election shall be determined in such manner as shall be directed by law. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner and under such penalties as each house may provide.

Sec. 16. Each house may determine the rules of its own proceedings, punish members for disorderly behavior, and, with the consent of two-thirds, expel a member, but not a second time for the same cause; and shall have all other powers necessary for a branch of the legislature of a free and independent State.

Sec. 17. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the same; and the yeas and nays of the members of either house, on any question, shall, at the desire of any three members present, be entered on the journal.

Sec. 18. When vacancies happen in either house, the governor, or the person exercising the powers of the governor, shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies.

Sec. 19. Senators and representatives shall in all cases, except of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of the legislature, and in going to and returning from the same, allowing one day for every twenty miles such member may reside from the place at which the legislature is convened.

Sec. 20. Each house may punish by imprisonment, during the session, any person, not a member, for disrespectful or disorderly behavior Edition: current; Page: [2054] in its presence, or for obstructing any of its proceedings: Provided, Such imprisonment shall not, at any one time, exceed forty-eight hours.

Sec. 21. The doors of each house shall be open, except on such occasions of great emergency as, in the opinion of the house, may require secrecy.

Sec. 22. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which they may be sitting.

Sec. 23. Bills may originate in either house, and be amended, altered, or rejected by the other, but no bill shall have the force of a law until on three several days it be read in each house, and free discussion be allowed thereon, unless four-fifths of the house in which the bill shall be pending may deem it expedient to dispense with this rule; and every bill having passed both houses shall be signed by the speaker and president of their respective houses.

Sec. 24. All bills for raising revenue shall originate in the house of representatives, but the senate may amend or reject them as other bills.

Sec. 25. Each member of the legislature shall receive from the public treasury a compensation for his services, which may be increased or diminished by law; but no increase of compensation shall take effect during the session at which such increase shall have been made.

Sec. 26. No senator or representative shall, during the term for which he shall have been elected, nor for one year thereafter, be appointed to any civil office of profit under this State, which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased, during such term, except such offices as may be filled by elections by the people; and no member of either house of the legislature shall, after the commencement of the first session of the legislature after his election, and during the remainder of the term for which he is elected, be eligible to any office or place, the appointment to which may be made in whole or in part by either branch of the legislature.

Sec. 27. No judge of any court of law or equity, secretary of state, attorney-general, clerk of any court of record, sheriff, or collector, or any person holding a lucrative office under the United States or this State, shall be eligible to the legislature: Provided, That offices in the militia, to which there is attached no annual salary, and the office of justice of the peace, shall not be deemed lucrative.

Sec. 28. No person who hath heretofore been, or hereafter may be, a collector or holder of public moneys, shall have a seat in either house of the legislature, until such person shall have accounted for, and paid into the treasury, all sums for which he may be accountable.

Sec. 29. The first election for senators and representatives shall be general throughout the State, and shall be held on the first Monday and day following in November, 1833; and thereafter there shall be biennial elections for senators to fill the places of those whose term of service may have expired.

Sec. 30. The first and all future sessions of the legislature shall be held in the town of Jackson, in the county of Hinds, until the year 1850. During the first session thereafter, the legislature shall have power to designate by law the permanent seat of government: Provided, however, That unless such designation be then made by law, Edition: current; Page: [2055] the seat of government shall continue permanently at the town of Jackson. The first session shall commence on the third Monday in November, in the year 1833; and in every two years thereafter, at such time as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 31. The governor, secretary of state, treasurer, auditor of public accounts, and attorney-general, shall reside at the seat of government.

Article IV: JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The judicial power of this State shall be vested in one high court of errors and appeals, and such other courts of law and equity as are hereafter provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 2. The high court of errors and appeals shall consist of three judges, any two of whom shall form a quorum. The legislature shall divide the State into three districts, and the qualified electors of each district shall elect one of said judges for the term of six years.

Sec. 3. The office of one of said judges shall be vacated in two years, and of one in four years, and of one in six years, so that at the expiration of every two years one of said judges shall be elected as aforesaid.

Sec. 4. The high court of errors and appeals shall have no jurisdiction but such as properly belongs to a court of errors and appeals.

Sec. 5. All vacancies that may occur in said court, from death, resignation, or removal, shall be filled by election as aforesaid: Provided, however, That if the unexpired term do not exceed one year, the vacancy shall be filled by executive appointment.

Sec. 6. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the high court of errors and appeals who shall not have attained, at the time of his election, the age of thirty years.

Sec. 7. The high court of errors and appeals shall be held twice in each year, at such place as the legislature shall direct, until the year eighteen hundred and thirty-six, and afterwards at the seat of government of the State.

Sec. 8. The secretary of state, on receiving all the official returns of the first election, shall proceed, forthwith, in the presence and with the assistance of two justices of the peace, to determine by lot among the three candidates having the highest number of votes, which of said judges elect shall serve for the term of two years, which shall serve for the term of four years, and which shall serve for the term of six years, and having so determined the same, it shall be the duty of the governor to issue commissions accordingly.

Sec. 9. No judge shall sit on the trial of any cause when the parties, or either of them, shall be connected with him by affinity or consanguinity, or when he may be interested in the same, except by consent of the judge and of the parties; and whenever a quorum of said court are situated as aforesaid, the governor of the State shall in such case specially commission two or more men of law knowledge for the determination thereof.

Sec. 10. The judges of said court shall receive for their services a compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

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Sec. 11. The judges of the circuit court shall be elected by the qualified electors of each judicial district, and hold their offices for the term of four years, and reside in their respective districts.

Sec. 12. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the circuit court who shall not at the time of his election have attained the age of twenty-six years.

Sec. 13. The State shall be divided into convenient districts, and each district shall contain not less than three nor more than twelve counties.

Sec. 14. The circuit court shall have original jurisdiction in all matters, civil and criminal, within this State; but in civil cases only when the principal of the sum in controversy exceeds fifty dollars.

Sec. 15. A circuit court shall be held in each county of this State, at least twice in each year; and the judges of said courts shall interchange circuits with each other, in such manner as may be prescribed by law, and shall receive for their services a compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

Sec. 16. A separate superior court of chancery shall be established, with full jurisdiction in all matter of equity: Provided, however, The legislature may give to the circuit courts of each county equity jurisdiction in all cases where the value of the thing, or amount in controversy, does not exceed five hundred dollars; also, in all cases of divorce, and for the foreclosure of mortgages. The chancellor shall be elected by the qualified electors of the whole State, for the term of six years, and shall be at least thirty years old at the time of his election.a

Sec. 17. The style of all process shall be “The State of Mississippi,” and all prosecutions shall be carried on in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, and shall conclude “against the peace and dignity of the same.”

Sec. 18. A court of probates shall be established in each county of this State, with jurisdiction in all matters testamentary and of administration in orphans’ business and the allotment of dower, in cases of idiotcy and lunacy, and of persons non compos mentis. The judge of said court shall be elected, by the qualified electors of the respective counties, for the term of two years.

Sec. 19. The clerk of the high court of errors and appeals shall be appointed by said court for the term of four years, and the clerks of the circuit, probate, and other inferior courts shall be elected by the qualified electors of the respective counties, and shall hold their offices for the term of two years.

Sec. 20. The qualified electors of each county shall elect five persons for the term of two years, who shall constitute a board of police for each county, a majority of whom may transact business; which body shall have full jurisdiction over roads, highways, ferries, and bridges, and all other matters of county police, and shall order all county elections to fill vacancies that may occur in the offices of their respective counties; the clerk of the court of probate shall be the clerk of the board of county police.b

Sec. 21. No person shall be eligible as a member of said board who shall not have resided one year in the county; but this qualification Edition: current; Page: [2057] shall not extend to such new counties as may hereafter be established until one year after their organization; and all vacancies that may occur in said board shall be supplied by election as aforesaid to fill the unexpired term.

Sec. 22. The judges of all the courts of the State, and also the members of the board of county police, shall, in virtue of their offices, be conservators of the peace, and shall be by law vested with ample powers in this respect.

Sec. 23. A competent number of justices of the peace and constables shall be chosen in each county, by the qualified electors thereof, by districts, who shall hold their offices for the term of two years. The jurisdiction of justices of peace shall be limited to causes in which the principal of the amount in controversy shall not exceed fifty dollars. In all causes tried by a justice of the peace, the right of appeal shall be secured under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 24. The legislature may, from time to time, establish such other inferior courts as may be deemed necessary, and abolish the same whenever they shall deem it expedient.

Sec. 25. There shall be an attorney-general elected by the qualified electors of the State; and a competent number of district attorneys shall be elected by the qualified voters of their respective districts, whose compensation and term of service shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 26. The legislature shall provide by law for determining contested elections of judges of the high court of errors and appeals, of the circuit and probate courts, and other officers.

Sec. 27. The judges of the several courts of this State, for wilful neglect of duty or other reasonable cause, shall be removed by the governor on the address of two-thirds of both houses of the legislature; the address to be by joint vote of both houses. The cause or causes for which such removal shall be required shall be stated at length in such address, and on the journals of each house. The judge so intended to be removed shall be notified and admitted to a hearing in his own defence before any vote for such address shall pass; the vote on such address shall be taken by yeas and nays, and entered on the journals of each house.

Sec. 28. Judges of probate, clerks, sheriffs, and other county officers, for wilful neglect of duty or misdemeanor in office, shall be liable to presentment or indictment by a grand jury, and trial by a petit jury, and upon conviction shall be removed from office.

Article V: EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The chief executive power of this State shall be vested in a governor, who shall hold his office for two years from the time of his installation.

Sec. 2. The governor shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State. The returns of every election for governor shall be sealed up and transmitted to the seat of government, directed to the secretary of state, who shall deliver them to the speaker of the house of representatives at the next ensuing session of the legislature, during the first week of which session the said speaker shall open and publish Edition: current; Page: [2058] them in the presence of both houses of the legislature. The person having the highest number of votes shall be governor; but if two or more shall be equal and highest in votes, then one of them shall be chosen governor by the joint ballot of both houses of the legislature. Contested elections for governor shall be determined by both houses of the legislature, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 3. The governor shall be at least thirty years of age, shall have been a citizen of the United States for twenty years, shall have resided in this State at least five years next preceding the day of his election, and shall not be capable of holding the office more than four years in any term of six years.

Sec. 4. He shall, at stated times, receive for his services a compensation which shall not be increased or diminished during the term for which he shall be elected.

Sec. 5. He shall be commander-in-chief of the army and navy of this State, and of the militia, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States.

Sec. 6. He may require information in writing from the officers in the executive department on any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 7. He may, in cases of emergency, convene the legislature at the seat of government, or at a different place if that shall have become, since their last adjournment, dangerous from an enemy or from disease; and in case of disagreement between the two houses, with respect to the time of adjournment, adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the next stated meeting of the legislature.

Sec. 8. He shall, from time to time, give to the legislature information of the state of the government, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he may deem necessary and expedient.

Sec. 9. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed.

Sec. 10. In all criminal and penal cases, except in those of treason and impeachment, he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons and remit fines, and in cases of forfeiture, to stay the collection until the end of the next session of the legislature, and to remit forfeitures, by and with the advice and consent of the senate. In cases of treason, he shall have power to grant reprieves, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, but may respite the sentence until the end of the next session of the legislature.

Sec. 11. All commissions shall be in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, be sealed with the great seal, and signed by the governor, and be attested by the secretary of state.

Sec. 12. There shall be a seal of this State, which shall be kept by the governor, and used by him officially, and shall be called the great seal of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 13. All vacancies not provided for in this constitution shall be filled in such manner as the legislature may prescribe.

Sec. 14. The secretary of state shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State, and shall continue in office during the term of two years. He shall keep a fair register of all the official acts and proceedings of the governor, and shall, when required, lay the same, and all papers, minutes, and vouchers relative thereto, before the legislature, and shall perform such other duties as may be required of him by law.

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Sec. 15. Every bill which shall have passed both houses of the legislature shall be presented to the governor; if he approve he shall sign if, but if not he shall return it, with his objection, to the house in which it shall have originated, which shall enter the objections at large upon their journals and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of the house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered; if approved by two-thirds of that house, it shall become a law. But in such case the vote of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the members voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within six days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall become a law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by their adjournment, prevent its return, in which case it shall not become a law.

Sec. 16. Every order, resolution, or vote to which the concurrence of both houses may be necessary, except resolutions for the purpose of obtaining the joint action of both houses, and on questions of adjournment, shall be presented to the governor, and before it shall take effect be approved by him, or, being disapproved, shall be repassed by both houses, according to the rules and limitations prescribed in the case of a bill.

Sec. 17. Whenever the office of governor shall become vacant by death, resignation, removal from office, or otherwise, the president of the senate shall exercise the office of governor until another governor shall be duly qualified; and in case of the death, resignation, removal from office, or other disqualification of the president of the senate so exercising the office of governor, the speaker of the house of representatives shall exercise the office until the president of the senate shall have been chosen; and when the office of governor, president of the senate, and speaker of the house shall become vacant, in the recess of the senate, the person acting as secretary of state for the time being shall, by proclamation, convene the senate, that a president may be chosen to exercise the office of governor.

Sec. 18. When either the president or speaker of the house of representatives shall so exercise said office, he shall receive the compensation of the governor only, and his duties as president or speaker shall be suspended, and the senate or house of representatives, as the case may be, shall fill the vacancy until his duties as governor shall cease.

Sec. 19. A sheriff, and one or more coroners, a treasurer, surveyor, and ranger, shall be elected in each county by the qualified electors thereof, who shall hold their offices for two years, unless sooner removed, except that the coroner shall hold his office until his successor be duly qualified.

Sec. 20. A State treasurer and auditor of public accounts shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State, who shall hold their offices for the term of two years, unless sooner removed.

MILITIA

Section 1. The legislature shall provide by law for organizing and disciplining the militia of this State in such manner as they shall deem expedient, not incompatible with the Constitution and laws of the United States in relation thereto.

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Sec. 2. Commissioned officers of the militia (staff-officers and the officers of volunteer companies excepted) shall be elected by the persons liable to perform military duty and the qualified electors within their respective commands, and shall be commissioned by the governor.

Sec. 3. The governor shall have power to call forth the militia to execute the laws of the State, to suppress insurrection, and to repel invasion.

Article VI: IMPEACHMENTS

Section 1. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeaching.

Sec. 2. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate. When sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be on oath or affirmation. No person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present.

Sec. 3. The governor and all civil officers shall be liable to impeachment for any misdemeanor in office, but judgment in such cases shall not extend further than to removal from office and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust, or profit under the State; but the party convicted shall, nevertheless, be liable and subject to indictment, trial, and punishment, according to law, as in other cases.

Article VII: GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1. Members of the legislature, and all officers, executive and judicial, before they enter upon the duties of their respective offices, shall take the following oath or affirmation, to wit: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I will support the Constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the State of Mississippi, so long as I continue a citizen thereof, and that I will faithfully discharge, to the best of my abilities, the duties of the office of ———, according to law: So help me God.”

Sec. 2. The legislature shall pass such laws to prevent the evil practice of duelling as they may deem necessary, and may require all officers, before they enter upon the duties of their respective offices, to take the following oath or affirmation: “I do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that I have not been engaged in a duel, by sending or accepting a challenge to fight a duel, or by fighting a duel, since the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and thirty-three, nor will I be so engaged during my continuance in office: So help me God.”

Sec. 3. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against it, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason, unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or his own confession in open court.

Sec. 4. Every person shall be disqualified from holding an office or place of honor or profit under the authority of this State who shall Edition: current; Page: [2061] be convicted of having given or offered any bribe to secure his election. Laws shall be made to exclude from office or suffrage those who shall thereafter be convicted of bribery, perjury, forgery, or other high crimes or misdemeanors. The privilege of free suffrage shall be supported by laws regulating elections, and prohibiting, under adequate penalties, all undue influences therein, from power, bribery, tumult, or other improper conduct.

Sec. 5. No person who denies the being of a God, or a future state of rewards and punishments, shall hold any office in the civil department of this State.

Sec. 6. No law of a general nature, unless otherwise provided for, shall be enforced until sixty days after the passage thereof.

Sec. 7. No money shall be drawn from the treasury but in consequence of an appropriation made by law, nor shall any appropriation of money for the support of an army be made for a longer term than one year.

Sec. 8. No money from the treasury shall be appropriated to objects of internal improvement, unless the bill for that purpose be passed by two-thirds of both branches of the legislature; and a regular statement and account of the receipts and expenditures of public moneys shall be published annually.

Sec. 9. No law shall ever be passed to raise a loan of money upon the credit of the State, or to pledge the faith of the State, for the redemption of any loan or debt, unless such law be proposed in the senate or house of representatives, and be agreed to by a majority of the members of each house, and entered on the journals with the yeas and nays taken thereon, and be referred to the next succeeding legislature, and published for three months previous to the next regular election, in three newspapers of this State; and unless a majority of each branch of the legislature, so elected, after such publication, shall agree to and pass such a law; and in such case the yeas and nays shall be taken and entered on the journals of each house: Provided, That nothing in this section shall be so construed as to prevent the legislature from negotiating a further loan of one and a half millions of dollars, and vesting the same in stock reserved to the State by the charter of the Planters’ Bank of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 10. The legislature shall direct, by law, in what manner and in what courts suits may be brought against the State.

Sec. 11. Absence on business of this State, or of the United States, or on a visit, or necessary private business, shall not cause a forfeiture of citizenship or residence once obtained.

Sec. 12. It shall be the duty of the legislature to regulate, by law, the cases in which deductions shall be made from salaries of public officers for neglect of duty in their official capacity, and the amount of such deduction.

Sec. 13. No member of Congress, nor any person holding any office of profit or trust under the United States, (the office of postmaster excepted,) or any other State of the Union, or under any foreign power, shall hold or exercise any office of trust or profit under this State.

Sec. 14. Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government, the preservation of liberty, and the happiness of mankind, schools, and the means of education, shall forever be encouraged in this State.

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Sec. 15. Divorces from the bonds of matrimony shall not be granted but in cases provided for by law, by suit in chancery.

Sec. 16. Returns of all elections by the people shall be made to the secretary of state in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 17. No new county shall be established by the legislature which shall reduce the county or counties, or either of them, from which it may be taken, to less contents than five hundred and sixty-six square miles; nor shall any new county be laid off of less contents.

Sec. 18. The legislature shall have power to admit to all the rights and privileges of free white citizens of this State all such persons of the Choctaw and Chickasaw tribes of Indians as shall choose to remain in this State, upon such terms as the legislature may from time to time deem proper.

SLAVES

Section 1. The legislature shall have no power to pass laws for the emancipation of slaves without the consent of the owners, unless where the slave shall have rendered to the State some distinguished service; in which case the owner shall be paid a full equivalent for the slave so emancipated. They shall have no power to prevent emigrants to this State from bringing with them such persons as are deemed slaves by the laws of any one of the United States, so long as any person of the same age or description shall be continued in slavery by the laws of this State: Provided, That such person or slave be the bona-fide property of such immigrants: And provided also, That laws may be passed to prohibit the introduction into this State of slaves who may have committed high crimes in other States. They shall have power to pass laws to permit the owners of slaves to emancipate them, saving the rights of creditors, and preventing them from becoming a public charge. They shall have full power to oblige the owners of slaves to treat them with humanity; to provide for them necessary clothing and provisions; to abstain from all injuries to them, extending to life or limb; and, in case of their neglect or refusal to comply with the directions of such laws, to have such slave or slaves sold for the benefit of the owner or owners.

Sec. 2. The introduction of slaves into this State as merchandise, or for sale, shall be prohibited from and after the first day of May, eighteen hundred and thirty-three: Provided, That the actual settler or settlers shall not be prohibited from purchasing slaves in any State in this Union, and bringing them into this State for their own individual use, until the year eighteen hundred and forty-five.

Sec. 3. In the prosecution of slaves for crimes of which the punishment is not capital, no inquest by a grand jury shall be necessary; but the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law.

MODE OF REVISING THE CONSTITUTION

Whenever two-thirds of each branch of the legislature shall deem any change, alteration, or amendment necessary to this constitution, such proposed change, alteration, or amendment shall be read and passed by a majority of two-thirds of each house, respectively, on each day, for three several days. Public notice thereof shall then be given by the secretary of state, at least six months preceding the next general election, at which the qualified electors shall vote directly for Edition: current; Page: [2063] or against such change, alteration, or amendment; and if it shall appear that a majority of the qualified electors voting for members of the legislature shall have voted for the proposed change, alteration, or amendment, then it shall be inserted by the next succeeding legislature as a part of this constitution, and not otherwise.

Schedule

Section 1. All rights vested, and all liabilities incurred, shall remain the same as if this constitution had not been adopted.

Sec. 2. All suits at law or in equity, now pending in the several courts of this State, may be transferred to such courts as may have proper jurisdiction thereof.

Sec. 3. The governor and all officers, civil and military, now holding commissions under the authority of this State, shall continue to hold and exercise their respective officers until they shall be superseded, pursuant to the provisions of this constitution, and until their successors be duly qualified.

Sec. 4. All laws now in force in the State, not repugnant to this constitution, shall continue to operate until they shall expire by their own limitation, or be altered or repealed by the legislature.

Sec. 5. Immediately upon the adoption of this constitution, the president of this convention shall issue writs of election directed to the sheriffs of the several counties, requiring them to cause an election to be held on the first Monday and day following in December next, for members of the legislature, at the respective places of holding elections in said counties, which elections shall be conducted in the manner prescribed by the existing election-laws of the State; and the members of the legislature thus elected shall continue in office until the next general election, and shall convene at the seat of government on the first Monday in January, eighteen hundred and thirty-three; and shall, at their first session, order an election to be held in every county of this State, on the first Monday in May and day following, eighteen hundred and thirty-three, for all State and county officers under this constitution, (members of the legislature excepted,) and the other officers then elected shall continue in office until the succeeding general election and after, in the same manner as if the election had taken place at the time last aforesaid.

Sec. 6. Until the first enumeration shall be made, as directed by this constitution, the apportionment of senators and representatives among the several districts and counties in this State shall remain as at present fixed by law.

P. Rutilius R. Pray, President.
John H. Mallory, Secretary.

AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF 1832*

(Amendment I)

Sec. 2. The legislature shall have, and are hereby vested with power to pass such laws regulating or prohibiting the introduction of slaves into this State, as may be deemed proper and expedient.

[Inserted by resolution approved February 2, 1846.] See note, p. 2064.

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(Amendment II)

Art. IV. Sec. 20. The qualified electors of each county shall elect five persons, by districts, for the term of two years, who shall constitute a board of police for each county, a majority of whom may transact business; which body shall have full jurisdiction over roads, highways, ferries and bridges; and all other matters of county policy, and shall order all county elections to fill vacancies that may occur in the offices of their respective counties. The clerk of the court of probate shall be the clerk of the board of county police.

[Inserted by act approved March 12, 1852.]a

(Amendment III)

The following section to be numbered seven, added to the schedule, and made part of the constitution, to take the place of all conflicting provisions now contained in the constitution, to wit:

Sec. 7. All general elections by the people of this State shall be held on the first Monday of October; and be concluded in one day. On the first Monday of October, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, and biennially thereafter, an election shall be held for Representatives in Congress and all State officers and members of the legislature, except for officers and senators entitled to hold over after November, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, who shall continue in office until their successors are entitled to succeed them therein. The legislature shall convene on the first Monday of November, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven; and biennially thereafter, but may be specially convoked by the governor at other times. The governor’s official term shall commence on the third Monday of November, and that of secretary of state, auditor of public accounts, state treasurer, and attorney general, on the first Monday of January next after his and their election; but the attorney general shall hold his office as heretofore, for the term of four years. On the first Monday of October, eighteen hundred and fifty-eight, and biennially thereafter, an election shall be held for all county, district, judicial and ministerial officers, (except officers who may then be entitled to hold over after January, eighteen hundred and fifty-nine, or until the time of holding another election,) and the official terms of all such officers then and thereafter elected, shall commence on the first Monday of January next after this election; but all such officers elected in eighteen hundred and fifty-five, or previously, whose official terms, in the absence of this provision, would expire in November, eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, shall continue in office until the first Monday of January, eighteen hundred and fifty-nine.

[Inserted by act approved February 2, 1856.]

(Amendment IV)

Additional article added as follows, to wit:

Art. 9. All public officers in this State, legislative, executive and judicial, whose terms of office expire at the general election to be held Edition: current; Page: [2065] in the year one thousand eight hundred and fifty-seven, or at any subsequent general election, shall continue to hold their offices until the first Monday of January next following the expiration of said terms, and until their successors shall be qualified: Provided, such of said officers as are required to give bond for the discharge of their duties, shall give bond and security for said extended term, as may be provided by the legislature: and the terms of office of all officers chosen at the general election in the year eighteen hundred and fifty-seven, or at any subsequent general election, shall commence on the first Monday of January next succeeding the election, and shall continue for the time now fixed by the constitution, and until their successors shall be qualified.

[Proposed by act approved March 2, 1854.]

[Inserted by act approved February 6, 1856.]

(Amendment V)

Art. IV. Sec. 16. Chancery courts, with full jurisdiction in all matters of equity, shall be held in each judicial district, by the circuit judge thereof, at such time and place as may be directed by law. The superior court of chancery and the several vice-chancery courts, shall continue as now organized, until the first Monday of November, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-seven, for the disposition of causes now depending therein. The legislature shall provide by law for the preservation of the records of the said superior court of chancery, and of said vice-chancery courts, and also for the transfer of all causes that may remain undetermined therein, to other courts for final decision.

[Inserted by act approved February 6, 1856.]

(Amendment VI)

That the following words be and they are hereby inserted in the constitution of this State and form a part thereof, to wit: “That the amendment to the constitution voted for by a majority of the qualified electors in this State at the last general election, known as the tenure of office amendment, and which was added to the constitution by an act of the legislature of this State, approved the sixth day of February, eighteen hundred and fifty-six, be abrogated, so far as it fixes the terms of office of members of the legislature, and in lieu thereof the following section be adopted and inserted in the constitution: ‘Sec.—. The term of office of members of the legislature shall be for the period now fixed by the constitution, and shall commence from and after their election, and expire at the next general election thereafter at which their successors are elected.’ ”

(Amendment VII)

Section 1. The institution of slavery having been destroyed in the State of Mississippi, neither slavery nor involuntary servitude otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall hereafter exist in this State; and the legislature at its next session, and hereafter as the public welfare may Edition: current; Page: [2066] require, shall provide by law for the protection and security of the person and property of the freedmen of the State, and guard them and the State against any evils that may arise from their sudden emancipation.

[Inserted by ordinance, adopted and approved, August 21, 1865.]

(Amendment VIII)

First. That the constitution shall be amended by abolishing and striking out sections one, two and three of article seven, under the title “slaves,” and amendment number one, approved February second, eighteen hundred and forty-six, relative to slaves.

Second. That a provision in the following language shall be inserted in the constitution as article eight, to wit: “The institution of slavery having been destroyed in the State of Mississippi, neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall hereafter exist in this State; and the legislature at its next session, and thereafter as the public welfare may require, shall provide by law for the protection and security of the person and property of the freedmen of this State, and guard them and the State against any evils that may arise from their sudden emancipation.”

Third. That the twelfth section of the declaration of rights be amended by the insertion of the following proviso, to wit: Provided, That the legislature, in cases of petit larceny, assault, assault and battery, affray, riot, unlawful assembly, drunkenness, vagrancy, and other misdemeanors of like character, may dispense with an inquest of a grand jury, and may authorize prosecutions before justices of the peace, or such other inferior court or courts as may be established by the legislature, and the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law.”

(Amendment IX)

An Ordinance to amend seventh section of the fourth article of the constitution.

Amend the seventh section of the fourth article of the constitution of the State, so as to read as follows: “The high court of errors and appeals shall be held at least once in each year, at the seat of government, and at such other place or places in the State as the legislature may direct.”

(Amendment X)

An Ordinance to amend eighteenth section of the fourth article of the Constitution.

Section 1. Be it ordained and declared, and it is hereby ordained and declared, That the eighteenth section of the fourth article of the Constitution of the State of Mississippi, be so amended as to read as follows, to wit: “A court of probates shall be established in each county in this State, with jurisdiction in all matters testamentary, and of administration in minors’ business, and allotment of dower, Edition: current; Page: [2067] in cases of idiocy and lunacy, and of persons non compos mentis. The judge of said Court shall be elected by the qualified electors of the respective counties for the term of two years.”

(Amendment XI)

An Ordinance concerning the compensation of members of the legislature.

Section 1. Be it ordained by the people of the State of Mississippi in Convention assembled, That the twenty-fifth section of article three, of the State constitution, so far as it prohibits an increase of the compensation of members of the legislature from taking effect during the session at which it is made, be and the same is hereby suspended until after the close of the next session of that body.

(Amendment XII)

An Ordinance in relation to the ordinance of secession and other ordinances and resolutions, adopted by a former convention held in the city of Jackson on the seventh January, eighteen hundred and sixty-one, and on the twenty-fifth day of March, eighteen hundred and sixty-one.

Section 1. Be it ordained by the people of the State of Mississippi in Convention assembled, That an ordinance passed by a former convention of the State of Mississippi, on the ninth day of January, eighteen hundred and sixty-one, entitled “An ordinance to dissolve the union between the State of Mississippi and other States united with her under the compact entitled, ‘The Constitution of the United States of America,’ ” is hereby declared to be null and void.

(Amendment XIII)*

Article I. Sec. 12. So altered and amended as to read: “That no person shall, for any indictable offence, be proceeded against criminally by information; except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia when in actual service, or by leave of the court, for misdemeanor in office: Provided, That the legislature in case of petit larceny, assault, assault and battery, affray, riot, unlawful assembly, drunkenness, vagrancy, and other misdemeanors, of like character, may dispense with an inquest of a grand jury, and may authorize prosecutions before justices of the peace, or such other inferior court or courts as may be established by the legislature; and the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law.”

Art. VIII. So altered and amended as to read: “The institution of slavery having been destroyed in the State of Mississippi, neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall hereafter exist in this State; and the legislature at its next session, and thereafter as the public welfare may require, shall provide by law for the protection and security of the person and property of the Edition: current; Page: [2068] freedmen of the State, and guard them and the State against any evils that may arise from their sudden emancipation.”

[Ratified August 21, 1865.]

(Amendment XIV)

An Ordinance in relation to special courts of equity.

Section 1. Be it ordained, That the special courts of equity heretofore, and that may be hereafter established in this State by the provisional governor thereof, be and the same are hereby recognised to be in existence, but that in all cases the right and benefit of exceptions, bills of exceptions, writs of error, supersedeas and appeals from said court or courts, to the high court of errors and appeals, for the revision and judgment of the latter court, shall be and are hereby secured to any party litigant in said court or courts, who may desire the same, as is now provided for and regulated by the laws of the State in cases of exceptions, writs of error, supersedeas and appeals from the circuit and chancery courts of this State to the said court of errors and appeals; and the said court of errors and appeals shall take cognizance and jurisdiction of such cases, as in the case of appeal and writ of error from the circuit and chancery courts of this State: Provided, That such special courts and the proceedings had therein, after the courts known to the constitution and laws of this State are established, shall not be recognised beyond the then unfinished and instituted business of the same; and the records and papers of said special courts shall, upon their expiration, be deposited in the office of the clerks of the several circuit courts of this State, in whose counties the said special court or courts are, or may be held, for the safe-keeping thereof, and may be authenticated thereafter as other records of said circuit and chancery courts.

(Amendment XV)

An Ordinance to confer certain powers upon the legislature.

Section 1. Be it ordained, That the legislature of this State shall have full and complete, ample and plenary power and right to ascertain, adjust and settle, any and all pecuniary liability and indebtedness of this State, or the citizens thereof, to the Government of the United States of America, under and by reason of the revenue laws of the latter, either past, present or future; and to provide by law or otherwise, in such way and manner, and on such terms as the Legislature may, in its opinion, deem or declare to be most wise, judicious, and expedient, for the ascertainment, adjustment, and present or ultimate settlement and payment of the same: hereby intending to confer, and actually conferring upon the legislature of this State, full and absolute power, and right to pledge and use the faith and credit of the State, and to do and perform whatever is or may be necessary, proper, or expedient in the premises aforesaid.

Edition: current; Page: [2069]

CONSTITUTION OF MISSISSIPPI—1868*a

PREAMBLE

To the end that justice be established, public order maintained, and liberty perpetuated, we, the people of the State of Mississippi, grateful to Almighty God for the free exercise of the right to choose our own form of government, do ordain this constitution.

Article I: BILL OF RIGHTS

Section 1. All persons resident in this State, citizens of the United States, are hereby declared citizens of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 2. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property, except by due process of law.

Sec. 3. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when, in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it.

Sec. 4. The freedom of speech and of the press shall be held sacred, and in all indictments for libel the jury shall determine the law and the facts, under the direction of the court.

Sec. 5. No person’s life or liberty shall be twice placed in jeopardy for the same offence.

Sec. 6. The right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government on any subject shall never be impaired.

Sec. 7. In all criminal prosecutions the accused shall have a right to be heard by himself or counsel, or both, to demand the nature and cause of the accusation, to be confronted by the witnesses against him, to have a compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and in all prosecutions by indictment or information a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury of the county where the offence was committed; and he shall not be compelled to give evidence against himself.

Sec. 8. Cruel or unusual punishment shall not be inflicted, nor shall excessive fines be imposed; excessive bail shall not be required, and all persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offences when the proof is evident or presumption great.

Sec. 9. No ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, shall ever be passed.

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Sec. 10. Private property shall not be taken for public use except upon due compensation first being made to the owner or owners thereof in a manner to be provided for by law.

Sec. 11. There shall be no imprisonment for debt.

Sec. 12. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 13. No property qualification shall ever be required of any person to become a juror.

Sec. 14. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses, and possessions, from unreasonable seizure or search, and no warrant shall be issued without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, specially designating the place to be searched and the person or thing to be seized.

Sec. 15. All persons shall have a right to keep and bear arms for their defence.

Sec. 16. The rights of married women shall be protected by law in property owned previous to marriage; and also in all property acquired in good faith by purchase, gift, devise, or bequest, after marriage: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to protect said property from being applied to the payment of their lawful debts.

Sec. 17. No property qualification for eligibility to office shall ever be required.

Sec. 18. No property nor educational qualification shall ever be required for any person to become an elector.

Sec. 19. There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in this State, otherwise than in the punishment of crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.

Sec. 20. The right to withdraw from the Federal Union on account of any real or supposed grievances shall never be assumed by this State, nor shall any law be passed in derogation of the paramount allegiance of the citizens of this State to the government of the United States.

Sec. 21. No public money or moneys shall be appropriated for any charitable or other public institutions in this State making any distinction among the citizens thereof, Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to prevent the legislature from appropriating the school-fund in accordance with the article in this constitution relating to public schools.

Sec. 22. No distinction shall ever be made by law between citizens and alien friends in reference to the possession, enjoyment, or descent of property.

Sec. 23. No religious test as a qualification for office shall ever be required, and no preference shall ever be given by law to any religious sect or mode of worship, but the free enjoyment of all religious sentiments and the different modes of worship shall ever be held sacred: Provided, The rights hereby secured shall not be construed to justify acts of licentiousness injurious to morals or dangerous to the peace and safety of the State.

Sec. 24. The right of all citizens to travel upon all public conveyances shall not be infringed upon nor in any manner abridged in this State.

Sec. 25. The military shall be in strict subordination to the civil power.

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Sec. 26. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against the same, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Sec. 27. No person’s life shall be perilled by the practice of duelling, and any person who shall hereafter fight a duel, or assist in the same as second, or send, accept, or knowingly carry a challenge therefor, or go out of the State to fight a duel, shall be disqualified from holding any office under this constitution, and shall forever be disfranchised in this State.

Sec. 28. All courts shall be open, and every person, for an injury done him in his lands, goods, person, or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and right and justice administered without sale, denial, or delay.

Sec. 29. No person shall ever be elected or appointed to any office in this State for life or during good behavior, but the term of all offices shall be for some specified period.

Sec. 30. No person shall be debarred from prosecuting or defending any civil cause for or against him or her self before any tribunal in this State, by him or her self, or counsel, or both.

Sec. 31. No person shall, for any indictable offence, be proceeded against criminally by information, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or the militia when in actual service, or by leave of the court, for misdemeanor in office: Provided, That the legislature, in cases of petit larceny, assaults, assault and battery, affray, riot, unlawful assembly, drunkenness, vagrancy, and other misdemeanors of like character, may dispense with an inquest of a grand jury, and may authorize prosecutions before justices of the peace or such other inferior court or courts as may be established by the legislature, and the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law.

Sec. 32. The enumeration of rights in this constitution shall not be construed to deny or impair others retained by and inherent in the people.

Article II: BOUNDARIES OF THE STATE

The limits and boundaries of the State of Mississippi shall remain as now established by law.

Article III: DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS

Section 1. The powers of government of the State of Mississippi shall be divided into three distinct departments, and each of them confided to a separate magistracy, to wit: Those which are legislative to one; those which are judicial to another; and those which are executive to another.

Sec. 2. No person or collection of persons, being of one of these departments, shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others, except in the instances hereinafter expressly directed or permitted.

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Article IV: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Section 1. The legislative power of this State shall be vested in the legislature, which shall consist of a senate and house of representatives.

Sec. 2. The house of representatives shall consist of members to be chosen every second year by the qualified electors of the several counties.

Sec. 3. No person shall be a member of the house of representatives who shall not be an elector under this constitution; and who shall not, at the time of his election, have an actual residence in the district he may be chosen to represent.

Sec. 4. The senate shall consist of members to be chosen every four years by the qualified electors of the several districts.

Sec. 5. No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained the age of twenty-five years, who shall not have been an inhabitant of the State one year, and who shall not have an actual residence in the district he may be chosen to represent.

Sec. 6. The political year shall begin on the first Monday of January, and the legislature shall meet annually on the first Tuesday after first Monday in January, at the seat of government, unless sooner convened by the governor, until altered by law.

Sec. 7. All general elections shall be by ballot, and shall commence and be holden every two years, on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, until altered by law; and the electors, in all cases except in cases of treason, felony, and breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during their attendance of elections, and in going to and returning therefrom.

Sec. 8. Election for members of the legislature shall be held in the several counties and districts as provided by law.

Sec. 9. The governor shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as may occur in either house of the legislature, and the persons thereupon chosen shall hold their seats for the unexpired term.

Sec. 10. Each house shall appoint its own officers, and shall judge of the qualifications, return, and election of its own members.

Sec. 11. The senate shall choose a president pro tempore, to act in the absence or disability of the lieutenant-governor.

Sec. 12. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a less number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each shall provide.

Sec. 13. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.

Sec. 14. Each house may determine rules of its own proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present, expel a member; but no member shall be expelled a second time for the same offence. They shall each, from time to time, publish a journal of their proceedings, except such parts as may, in their opinion, require secrecy; and the yeas and nays on any question shall be entered on the journal at the request of one-tenth of the members present: Provided, That the yeas and Edition: current; Page: [2073] nays shall always be entered on the journal on the passage of a bill appropriating money.

Sec. 15. The doors of each house, when in session, or in committee of the whole, shall be kept open, except in cases which may require secrecy; and each house may punish by fine and imprisonment any person not a member who shall be guilty of disrespect to the house by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in their presence, or in any way disturb their deliberations during the session; but such imprisonment shall not extend beyond the final adjournment of that session.

Sec. 16. No person liable for public moneys unaccounted for shall be eligible to a seat in either house of the legislature, or to any office of profit or trust, until he shall have accounted for and paid over all sums for which he may have been liable.

Sec. 17. No person shall be eligible to any office of profit or trust, nor shall he be permitted to exercise the right of suffrage within this State, who shall have been convicted of bribery, perjury, or other infamous crime.

Sec. 18. Any person who shall have been convicted of giving or offering, directly or indirectly, any bribe to procure his election or appointment, and any person who shall give or offer any bribe to procure the election or appointment of any person to office, shall, on conviction thereof, be disqualified from being an elector or holding any office of profit or trust under the laws of the State.

Sec. 19. Senators and representatives shall in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of the legislature, and for fifteen days before the commencement and after the termination of each session.

Sec. 20. The members of the legislature shall severally receive from the public treasury compensation for their services, which may be increased or diminished; but no alteration of such compensation of members shall take effect during the session at which it is made.

Sec. 21. The legislature shall direct by law in what courts and in what manner suits may be brought against the State.

Sec. 22. The legislature shall not have power to pass any bill of divorce, but may prescribe by law the manner in which cases shall be investigated in the courts of justice, and divorces granted.

Sec. 23. Bills may originate in either house, and be amended or rejected in the other, and every bill shall be read on three different days, in each house, unless two-thirds of the house where the same is pending shall dispense with the rules; and every bill, having passed both houses, shall be signed by the president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives, in open session.

Sec. 24. Every bill which has passed both houses shall be presented to the governor of the State. If he approves, he shall sign it; but if he does not approve, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it originated, who shall enter the objections at large upon their journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by which, likewise, it shall be reconsidered, and, if approved by two-thirds of that house, it shall become a law; but in all such cases the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for or against the bill shall be entered on the journal Edition: current; Page: [2074] of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within five days (Sunday excepted) after it has been presented to him, it shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by adjournment, prevented its return, in which case it shall be a law, unless sent back within three days after its next meeting.

Sec. 25. Every order, resolution, or vote, to which the concurrence of both houses may be necessary, (except on questions of adjournment,) shall be presented to the governor, and, before it shall take effect, be approved by him; or being disapproved, shall be repassed by two-thirds of both houses, according to the rules of limitation prescribed in all cases of a bill.

Sec. 26. No money shall be drawn from the treasury except on appropriations made by law.

Sec. 27. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment, but two-thirds of all the members present must concur therein. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate, and when sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be upon oath or affirmation to do justice according to law and evidence.

Sec. 28. The governor and all other civil officers under this State shall be liable to impeachment for treason, bribery, or any high crime or misdemeanor in office.

Sec. 29. When the governor shall be tried, the chief justice of the supreme court shall preside, and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of all the senators present.

Sec. 30. Judgment in such cases shall not extend further than removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust, or profit under this State; but the party convicted shall nevertheless be subject to indictment, trial, judgment, and punishment according to law.

Sec. 31. For reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient ground of impeachment, the governor shall, on the joint address of two-thirds of each branch of the legislature, remove from office the judges of the supreme and inferior courts; provided the cause or causes of removal be spread on the journal, and the party charged be notified of the same before the vote is finally taken and decided, and shall have an opportunity to be heard by himself or counsel, or both.

Sec. 32. The style of the laws of the State shall be, “Be it enacted by the legislature of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 33. The legislature shall provide for the enumeration of the whole number of inhabitants, and of the qualified electors of the State, once in every ten years; and the first enumeration shall be ordered at the first meeting of the legislature under this constitution.

Sec. 34. The number of representatives shall, at the several periods of making such enumeration, be apportioned among the several counties or districts, according to the number of qualified electors in each, and shall not be less than one hundred nor more than one hundred and twenty.

Sec. 35. The number of senators shall, upon each enumeration made, be apportioned according to the number of qualified electors in the several districts, and shall never be less than one-fourth nor more than one-third the whole number of representatives.

Sec. 36. The senators, on being convened after the first election, shall be divided by lot from their respective congressional districts Edition: current; Page: [2075] into two classes, as nearly equal as can be, and the seats of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second year.

Sec. 37. The legislature shall provide for the organization of new counties, locating county-seats, and changing county-lines; but no county shall be organized nor the lines of any county changed so as to include an area of less than four hundred nor more than six hundred and twenty-five square miles.

Sec. 38. No senator or representative, during the term for which he was elected, shall be appointed to any office of profit under this State, which shall have been created or the emoluments of which have been increased during the time such senator or representative was in office, except to such offices as may be filled by an election of the people.

Sec. 39. The legislature shall provide by law for determining contested elections.

Article V: EXECUTIVE

Section 1. The chief executive power of this State shall be vested in a governor, who shall hold his office for four years.

Sec. 2. The governor shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State. The returns of every election for governor shall be sealed up and transmitted to the seat of government, directed to the secretary of state, who shall deliver them to the speaker of the house of representatives at the next ensuing session of the legislature, during the first week of which session the said speaker shall open and publish them in presence of both houses of the legislature. The person having the highest number of votes shall be governor; but if two or more shall be equal and highest in votes, then one of them shall be chosen governor by the joint ballot of both houses of the legislature. Contested elections for governor shall be determined by both houses of the legislature in such manner as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 3. The governor shall be at least thirty years of age, and shall have been a citizen of the United States twenty years, and shall have resided in this State two years next preceding the day of his election.

Sec. 4. He shall receive for his services such compensation as shall be provided by law.

Sec. 5. He shall be commander-in-chief of the army and navy of the State, and of the militia, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States.

Sec. 6. He may require information, in writing, from the officers in the executive department, on any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 7. He may, in cases of emergency, convene the legislature at the seat of government, or at a different place, if that shall have become dangerous from an enemy, or from disease; and in case of disagreement between the two houses with respect to time of adjournment, adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the next stated meeting of the legislature.

Sec. 8. He shall, from time to time, give the legislature information of the state of the government, and recommend to their consideration such measures as he may deem necessary and expedient.

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Sec. 9. It shall be his duty to see that the laws are faithfully executed.

Sec. 10. In all criminal and penal cases, except in those of treason and impeachment, he shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons, and remit fines, and in cases of forfeiture to stay the collection until the end of the next session of the legislature, and to remit forfeitures by and with the consent of the senate. In cases of treason he shall have power to grant reprieves by and with the consent of the senate, but may respite the sentence until the end of the next session of the legislature.

Sec. 11. There shall be a seal of the State kept by the governor, and used by him officially, and be called “the Great Seal of the State of Mississippi.”

Sec. 12. All commissions shall be in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, be sealed with the great seal of State, and signed by the governor, and be attested by the secretary of state.

Sec. 13. All vacancies not provided for in this constitution shall be filled in such manner as the legislature may prescribe.

Sec. 14. There shall be a lieutenant-governor, who shall be elected at the same time, in the same manner, and for the same term, and shall possess the same qualifications as the governor.

Sec. 15. He shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate. In committee of the whole he may debate on all questions, and when there is an equal division in the senate, or on a joint vote of both houses, he shall give the casting vote.

Sec. 16. He shall receive for his services such compensation as may be provided by law.

Sec. 17. When the office of governor shall become vacant, by death or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor shall possess the powers and discharge the duties of said office, and receive the same compensation as the governor during the remainder of the said term. When the governor shall be absent from the State, or unable from protracted illness to perform the duties of his office, the lieutenant-governor shall discharge the duties of said office, and receive said compensation until the governor be able to resume his duties; but if, from disability or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor shall be incapable of performing said duties, or if he be absent from the State, the president of the senate pro tempore shall act in his stead, but if there be no such president, or if he be disqualified by like disability, or be absent from the State, then the speaker of the house of representatives shall assume the office of governor and perform said duties, and receive the same compensation as the governor, and in case of the inability of the foregoing officers to discharge the duties of governor, the secretary of state shall convene the senate to elect a president pro tempore.

Sec. 18. In case the election for lieutenant-governor shall be contested, it shall be decided in the same manner as that of the governor.

Sec. 19. The secretary of state shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State; shall be at least twenty-five years of age, and a citizen of the State one year next preceding the day of his election, and shall continue in office during the term of four years; he shall keep a correct register of all the official acts and proceedings of the governor; and shall, when required, lay the same and all papers, minutes, and vouchers relative thereto before the legislature, and shall perform such other duties as may be required of him by law.

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Sec. 20. A State treasurer and auditor of public accounts shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State, who shall hold their offices for the term of four years, unless sooner removed, and shall possess the same qualifications as the secretary of state; and, together with the last-named officer, shall receive such compensation as may be provided by law.

Sec. 21. A sheriff, coroner, treasurer, assessor, and surveyor shall be elected in each county by the qualified electors thereof, who shall hold their offices for two years, unless sooner removed.

Sec. 22. All officers named in this article shall hold their offices during the term for which they were elected, unless removed by impeachment or otherwise, and until their successors shall be duly qualified to enter on the discharge of their separate duties.

Article VI: JUDICIARY

Section 1. The judicial power of the State shall be vested in a supreme court, and such other courts of law and equity as are hereinafter provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 2. The supreme court shall consist of three judges, who shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, any two of whom, when convened, shall form a quorum. The legislature shall divide the State into three districts, and the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint one judge for each district.

Sec. 3. The office of one of said judges shall be vacated in three years, one in six years, and one in nine years, so that at the expiration of every three years one of said judges shall be appointed as aforesaid. The term of office of the judges of the supreme court shall be nine years.

Sec. 4. The supreme court shall have no jurisdiction but such as properly belongs to a supreme court.

Sec. 5. All vacancies which may occur in said court, from death, resignation, or removal, shall be filled by appointment, as aforesaid: Provided, however, That if any vacancy shall occur during the recess of the legislature, the governor shall appoint a successor, who shall hold his office until the next meeting of the legislature.

Sec. 6. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the supreme court who shall not have attained the age of thirty years at the time of his appointment, and who shall not have been for two years immediately preceding a citizen of the State.

Sec. 7. The supreme court shall be held twice in each year at the seat of government, at such times as the legislature may prescribe.

Sec. 8. Immediately upon the first appointment of judges as aforesaid, the governor, in the presence of, and with the assistance of, the president of the senate and secretary of state, shall determine, by lot, which of said judges shall serve for the term of three years and which shall serve for the term of six years and which shall serve for the term of nine years, and it shall be the duty of the governor to issue commissions accordingly.

Sec. 9. No judge of said court shall sit on the trial of any cause where the parties, or either of them, shall be connected with him by Edition: current; Page: [2078] affinity or consanguinity, or where he may be interested in the same, except by the consent of the judges and of the parties, and whenever a quorum of said court are situated as aforesaid, the governor of the State shall, in such cases, especially commission two or more men of law knowledge for the determination thereof.

Sec. 10. The judges of said court shall receive for their services a compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

Sec. 11. The judges of the circuit court shall be appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of the senate, and shall hold their office for the term of six years.

Sec. 12. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the circuit court who shall not, at the time of his appointment, have attained the age of twenty-six years, and shall have been two years a citizen of the State.

Sec. 13. The State shall be divided into convenient judicial districts.

Sec. 14. Circuit courts shall have original jurisdiction in all matters, civil and criminal, within this State; but in civil cases only when the principal amount in controversy exceeds one hundred and fifty dollars.

Sec. 15. A circuit court shall be held at least twice in each year, and the judges of said courts may interchange circuits with each other, in such manner as may be prescribed by law, and shall receive for their services a compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be diminished during their continuance in office.

Sec. 16. Chancery courts shall be established in each county in the State, with full jurisdiction in all matters in equity, and of divorce and alimony; in matters testamentary, and of administration in minors’ business, and allotment of dower, and in cases of idiocy, lunacy, and persons non compos mentis.

Sec. 17. The legislature shall divide the State into a convenient number of chancery districts, to be composed of not more than four counties. Chancellors shall be appointed in the same manner as the judges of the circuit courts. Their qualifications shall be regulated by law, and they shall hold their office for the term of four years. They shall hold a court in each county at least four times in each year, and shall receive such compensation as may be provided by law.

Sec. 18. The style of all process shall be, “The State of Mississippi,” and all prosecutions shall be carried on in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, and shall conclude, “against the peace and dignity of the same.”

Sec. 19. The clerk of the supreme court shall be appointed by said court, for the term of four years and the clerk of the circuit court and the clerk of the chancery court shall be elected by the qualified voters of their several counties, and shall hold their office for the term of four years and the legislature shall provide by law what duties shall be performed by the clerks of the circuit and chancery courts, during vacation, subject to the approval of the court.

Sec. 20. The qualified electors of each county shall elect five persons, by districts, for the term of two years, who shall constitute a board of supervisors for each county, a majority of whom may transact business, which body shall have full jurisdiction over roads, ferries and bridges, and shall order all county elections, to fill vacancies Edition: current; Page: [2079] that may arise in the offices of their respective counties, and perform such other duties as shall be provided by law. The clerk of the chancery court of each county shall be the clerk of such board of supervisors.

Sec. 21. No person shall be eligible as a member of said board who shall not have resided one year in the county; but this qualification shall not extend to new counties as may hereafter be established, until one year after their organization, and all vacancies that may occur in said board shall be supplied by election as aforesaid, to the unexpired term.

Sec. 22. Judges of all the courts of this State, and all other civil officers, shall, by virtue of their office, be conservators of the peace, and shall be, by law, vested with ample powers in that respect.

Sec. 23. A competent number of justices of the peace and constables shall be chosen in each county, by the qualified electors thereof, by districts, who shall hold their office for the term of two years. The jurisdiction of justices of the peace shall be limited to causes in which the principal of the amount in controversy shall not exceed the sum of [$150] one hundred and fifty dollars. In all causes tried by a justice of the peace, the right of appeal shall be secured, under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 24. The legislature shall, from time to time, establish such other inferior courts as may be necessary, and abolish the same whenever they shall deem it expedient.

Sec. 25. There shall be an attorney-general elected by the qualified electors of the State, and a competent number of district attorneys shall be elected by the qualified electors of the respective districts, whose term of service shall be four years, and whose duties and compensation shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 26. Clerks, sheriffs, and other county officers, for wilful neglect of duty or misdemeanor in office, shall be liable to presentment or indictment by grand jury, and trial by petit jury, and upon conviction shall be removed from office.

Article VII: FRANCHISE

Section 1. All elections by the people shall be by ballot.

Sec. 2. All male inhabitants of this State, except idiots and insane persons, and Indians not taxed, citizens of the United States or naturalized, twenty-one years old and upwards, who have resided in this State six months and in the county one month next preceding the day of election, at which said inhabitant offers to vote, and who are duly registered according to the requirements of section three of this article, and who are not disqualified by reason of any crime, are declared to be qualified electors.

Sec. 3. The legislature shall provide, by law, for the registration of all persons entitled to vote at any election, and all persons entitled to register shall take and subscribe to the following oath or affirmation: “I, ——— ———, do solemnly swear, [or affirm,] in the presence of Almighty God, that I am twenty-one years old; that I have resided in this State six months, and in ——— county one month; that I will faithfully support and obey the Constitution and laws of the Edition: current; Page: [2080] United States and of the State of Mississippi, and will bear true faith and allegiance to the same: So help me God.a

Sec. 4. No person shall be eligible to any office of profit or trust, or to any office in the militia of this State, who is not a qualified elector.

Sec. 5. [Expunged.]b

Sec. 6. In time of war, insurrection, or rebellion the right to vote at such place and in such manner as shall be prescribed by law shall be enjoyed by all persons otherwise entitled thereto, who may be in the actual military or naval service of the United States or this State, provided said votes be made to apply in the county or precinct wherein they reside.

Article VIII: SCHOOL-FUND, EDUCATION, AND SCIENCE

Section 1. As the stability of a republican form of government depends mainly upon the intelligence and virtue of the people, it shall be the duty of the legislature to encourage, by all suitable means, the promotion of intellectual, scientific, moral, and agricultural improvement, by establishing a uniform system of free public schools, by taxation or otherwise, for all children between the ages of five and twenty-one years, and shall, as soon as practicable, establish schools of higher grade.

Sec. 2. There shall be a superintendent of public education elected at the same time and in the same manner as the governor, who shall have the qualifications of the secretary of state, and hold his office for four years, and until his successor shall be elected and qualified, whose duties shall be the general supervision of the common schools and the educational interests of the State, and who shall perform such other duties pertaining to his office and receive such compensation as shall be prescribed by law; he shall report to the legislature, for its adoption, within twenty days after the opening of its first session under this constitution, a uniform system of free public schools.

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Sec. 3. There shall be a board of education, consisting of the secretary of state, the attorney-general, and the superintendent of public education, for the management and investment of the school-funds, under the general direction of the legislature, and to perform such other duties as may be prescribed by law. The superintendent and one other of said board shall constitute a quorum.

Sec. 4. There shall be a superintendent of public education in each county, who shall be appointed by the board of education, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, whose term of office shall be two years, and whose compensation and duties shall be prescribed by law: Provided, That the legislature shall have power to make said office of county-school superintendent of the several counties elective, as other county officers are.

Sec. 5. A public school or schools shall be maintained in each school-district at least four months in each year. Any school-district neglecting to maintain such school or schools shall be deprived for that year of its proportion of the income of the free-school fund, and all funds arising from taxes for the support of schools.

Sec. 6. There shall be established a common-school fund, which shall consist of the proceeds of the lands now belonging to the State, heretofore granted by the United States, and of the lands known as “swamp-lands,” except the swamp-lands lying and situated on Pearl River, in the counties of Hancock, Marion, Lawrence, Simpson, and Copiah, and of all lands now or hereafter vested in the State by escheat or purchase or forfeiture for taxes, and the clear proceeds of all fines collected in the several counties for any breach of the penal laws, and all moneys received for licenses granted under the general laws of the State for the sale of intoxicating liquor or keeping of dram-shops, all moneys paid as an equivalent for persons exempt from military duty, and the funds arising from the consolidation of the congressional-township fund and the lands belonging thereto, together with all moneys donated to the State for school purposes, which funds shall be securely invested in United States bonds and remain a perpetual fund, which may be increased but not diminished, the interest of which shall be inviolably appropriated for the support of free schools.

Sec. 7. The legislature may levy a poll-tax not to exceed two dollars a head in aid of the school-fund, and for no other purpose.

Sec. 8. The legislature shall, as soon as practicable, provide for the establishment of an agricultural college or colleges; and shall appropriate the two hundred and ten thousand acres of land donated to the State for the support of such a college, by the act of Congress passed July 2, ad 1865, or the money or scrip, as the case may be, arising from the sale of said lands or any lands which may hereafter be granted or appropriated for such purpose.

Sec. 9. No religious sect or sects shall ever control any part of the school or university funds of this State.

Sec. 10. The legislature shall from time to time, as may be necessary, provide for the levy and collection of such other taxes as may be required to properly support the system of free schools herein adopted; and all school-funds shall be divided pro rata among the children of school ages.

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Article IX: MILITIA

Section 1. All able-bodied male citizens of the State, between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years, shall be liable to military duty in the militia of this State, in such manner as the legislature shall provide, not incompatible with this constitution and the Constitution and laws of the United States.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall provide for the organizing, arming, equipping, and discipline of the militia, and for paying the same when called into active service.

Sec. 3. It shall be the duty of the first legislature to make such laws as shall be necessary to immediately create an effective militia in this State.

Sec. 4. All officers of militia, except non-commissioned officers, shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the consent of the senate, and shall be chosen for their military knowledge, their experience in arms, and their fidelity and loyalty; and no commissioned officer shall be removed from office except by the senate, on recommendation of the governor, stating the grounds on which such removal is recommended, or by the decision of a court-martial, pursuant to law, or at his own request.

Sec. 5. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the militia, except when it is called into the service of the United States; and shall have power to call forth the militia to execute the laws, repel invasion, and to suppress riots and insurrections.

Sec. 6. The governor shall nominate, and, by and with the consent of the senate, commission one major-general for the State, who shall be a citizen thereof; and also one brigadier-general for each congressional district, who shall be a resident of the district for which he shall be appointed; and each district shall constitute a militia division.

Sec. 7. The adjutant-general, and other staff-officers to the commander-in-chief, shall be appointed by the governor, and their appointment shall expire with the governor’s term of office.

Sec. 8. The militia shall be exempt from arrest during their attendance on musters, and in going to and returning from the same, except in case of treason, felony, or breach of the peace.

Article X: INTERNAL IMPROVEMENTS

The legislature, at its first regular session after the adoption of this constitution, shall provide for the organization of a board of public works, prescribe its duties, fix the compensation of its members, and all officers employed upon public works in this State.

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Article XI: APPORTIONMENT

Section 1. Until the first enumeration and a new apportionment shall be made as provided and directed in this constitution, the apportionment of senators and representatives among the several counties and districts in this State shall be as follows:

  • 1st. The county of Warren, five representatives.
  • 2d. The counties of Hinds and Lowndes, each four representatives.
  • 3d. The counties of Adams, Carroll, De Soto, Holmes, Madison, Marshall, Monroe, Noxubee, Washington, and Yazoo, each three representatives.
  • 4th. The counties of Attala, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Claiborne, Copiah, Jefferson, La Fayette, Lauderdale, Pontotoc, Oktibbeha, Panola, Tippah, Wilkinson, Yalobusha, Tishomingo, and Rankin, each two representatives.
  • 5th. The counties of Amite, Bolivar, Calhoun, Clarke, Franklin, Issaquena, Itawamba, Jasper, Kemper, Lawrence, Leake, Lee, Pike, Sunflower, Scott, Tallahatchee, Winston, Simpson, Coahoma, Tunica, Newton, Neshoba, Covington, Smith, Wayne, Davis, Greene, Jackson, Hancock, Marion, Harrison, and Perry, each one representative.
  • Sec. 2. 1st. The counties of Hancock, Harrison, Jackson, Marion, Greene, and Perry, shall form the first district, and elect one senator.
  • 2d. The counties of Wilkinson and Amite, the second district, and one senator.
  • 3d. The counties of Pike, Lawrence, and Covington, the third district, and one senator.
  • 4th. The county of Adams, the fourth district, and one senator.
  • 5th. The counties of Franklin and Jefferson, the fifth district, and one senator.
  • 6th. The counties of Claiborne and Copiah, the sixth district, and one senator.
  • 7th. Te counties of Warren and Issaquena, the seventh district, and two senators.
  • 8th. The counties of Hinds, Rankin, and Simpson, the eighth district, and two senators.
  • 9th. The counties of Davis, Jones, Jasper, Clarke, and Wayne, the ninth district, and one senator.
  • 10th. The counties of Lauderdale and Kemper, the tenth district, and one senator.
  • 11th. The counties of Newton, Smith, and Scott, the eleventh district, and one senator.
  • 12th. The county of Madison, the twelfth district, and one senator.
  • 13th. The county of Yazoo, the thirteenth district, and one senator.
  • 14th. The counties of Washington and Sunflower, the fourteenth district, and one senator.
  • 15th. The county of Holmes, the fifteenth district, and one senator.
  • 16th. The counties of Attala, Leake, and Neshoba, the sixteenth district, and one senator.
  • 17th. The county of Noxubee, the seventeenth district, and one senator.
  • 18th. The counties of Lowndes and Oktibbeha, the eighteenth district, and two senators. Edition: current; Page: [2084]
  • 19th. The counties of Choctaw and Winston, the nineteenth district, and one senator.
  • 20th. The county of Carroll, the twentieth district, and one senator.
  • 21st. The counties of Calhoun and Yalobusha, the twenty-first district, and one senator.
  • 22d. The counties of Chickasaw and Monroe, the twenty-second district, and two senators.
  • 23d. The counties of Bolivar, Coahoma, and Tunica, the twenty third district, and one senator.
  • 24th. The counties of Panola and Tallahatchee, the twenty-fourth district, and one senator.
  • 25th. The county of De Soto, the twenty-fifth district, and one senator.
  • 26th. The county of Marshall, the twenty-sixth district, and one senator.
  • 27th. The counties of La Fayette and Pontotoc, the twenty-seventh district, and one senator.
  • 28th. The counties of Tishomingo and Itawamba, the twenty-eighth district, and one senator.
  • 29th. The counties of Tippah and Lee, the twenty-ninth district, and one senator.

Article XII: GENERAL PROVISIONS

Section 1. The political year of the State of Mississippi shall commence on the first Monday of January in each year, and the general election shall be holden on the first Tuesday succeeding the first Monday in November, biennially.

Sec. 2. The legislature shall pass laws to exclude from office and from suffrage those who shall hereafter be convicted of bribery, perjury, forgery, or other high crimes or misdemeanors; and every person shall be disqualified from holding any office, or place of honor, profit, or trust under the authority of this State, who shall be convicted of having given or offered any bribe to procure his election or appointment.

Sec. 3. No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office in this State.

Sec. 4. The legislature shall provide by law for the indictment and trial of persons charged with the commission of any felony, in any county other than that in which the offence was committed, whenever owing to prejudice, or any other cause, an impartial grand or petit jury cannot be impanelled in the county in which the offence was committed.

Sec. 5. The credit of the State shall not be pledged or loaned in aid of any person, association, or corporation; nor shall the State hereafter become a stockholder in any corporation or association.

Sec. 6. The term of office of all county, township, and precinct officers shall expire within thirty days after this constitution shall have been ratified, and the governor shall, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, thereafter appoint such officers, whose term of office shall continue until the legislature shall provide by law for an election of said officers: Provided, The present incumbents of all Edition: current; Page: [2085] county, township, district, and beat officers shall hold their respective offices until their successors are legally appointed or elected and duly qualified.

Sec. 7. In all cases not otherwise provided for in this constitution, the legislature may determine the mode of filling all vacancies in all offices, and shall define their respective powers, and provide suitable compensation for all officers.

Sec. 8. The legislature, at its first session, shall provide by law for the sale of all delinquent tax lands. The courts shall apply the same liberal principles in favor of such titles as in sale by execution.

Sec. 9. No laws of a general nature, unless otherwise provided for, shall be enforced until sixty days after the passage thereof.

Sec. 10. It shall be the duty of the legislature to regulate, by law, the cases in which deductions shall be made from salaries of public officers for neglect of duty in their official capacity, and the amount of said deduction.

Sec. 11. The legislature, at its first session under this constitution, shall have authority to designate, by law, such loyal paper or papers, in each circuit-court district, as shall publish all legal advertising, and such official printing as shall be required by law in such circuit-court district, and fix the compensation therefor.

Sec. 12. No corporate body shall hereafter be created, renewed, or extended, with the privilege of making, issuing, or putting in circulation, any notes, bills, or other paper, or the paper of any other bank, to circulate as money; and the legislature shall prohibit, by law, individuals or corporations from issuing bills, checks, tickets, promissory notes, or other papers, as money. But nothing herein contained shall be construed as preventing corporations or associations from forming for such purposes under the acts of Congress for a national system of banking.

Sec. 13. The property of all corporations for pecuniary profits shall be subject to taxation, the same as that of individuals.

Sec. 14. The legislature shall not authorize any county, city, or town to become a stockholder in, or to lend its credit to, any company, association, or corporation, unless two-thirds of the qualified voters of such county, city or town, at a special election, or regular election, to be held therein, shall assent thereto.

Sec. 15. The legislature shall never authorize any lottery, nor shall the sale of lottery tickets be allowed, nor shall any lottery heretofore authorized be permitted to be drawn, or tickets therein to be sold.

Sec. 16. No county shall be denied the right to raise, by special tax, money sufficient to pay for the building and repairing of court-houses, jails, bridges, and other necessary conveniences for the people of the county; and money thus collected shall never be appropriated for any other purpose: Provided, The tax thus levied shall be a certain per cent. on all tax levied by the State.

Sec. 17. Liabilities of banks, associations, and other corporations shall be secured by legislative enactments; but in all cases no stockholder shall be individually liable over and above the stock by him or her owned, unless so specified in the articles of association or act of incorporation.

Sec. 18. All lands sold in pursuance of decree of courts or execution shall be divided into tracts not to exceed one hundred and sixty acres.

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Sec. 19. Returns of all elections by the people shall be made to the secretary of state in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 20. Taxation shall be equal and uniform throughout the State. All property shall be taxed in proportion to its value, to be ascertained as directed by law.

Sec. 21. The State of Mississippi shall never assume nor pay any debt or obligation contracted in aid of the rebellion, nor shall this State ever, in any manner, claim from the United States or make any allowance or compensation for slaves emancipated or liberated in any way whatever since the 9th day of January, 1861.

Sec. 22. All persons who have not been married, but are now living together, cohabiting as husband and wife, shall be taken and held, for all purposes in law, as married, and their children, whether born before or after the ratification of this constitution, shall be legitimate, and the legislature may, by law, punish adultery and concubinage.

Sec. 23. There shall be a commissioner of immigration and agriculture, who shall be elected by the legislature on joint ballot, who shall hold his office for the term of four years unless sooner removed by law.

Sec. 24. The next legislature shall have power to repeal statutes of limitation, pass relief, stay, injunction, insolvent, and homestead laws, and to pass any and every act deemed necessary for the relief of debtors, subject only to the restrictions imposed by the Constitution of the United States.

Sec. 25. Representatives in Congress to fill the existing vacancies shall be elected at the same time this constitution is submitted to the electors of the State for ratification, and for the full term next succeeding their election, and thereafter elections for Representatives in Congress shall be held biennially. The first election shall be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November preceding the expiration of said full term.

Sec. 26. Members of the legislature, and all other officers elected or appointed to any office in this State, shall, before entering upon the discharge of the duties thereof, take and subscribe the following oath of office:

OATH OF OFFICE

“I, ——— ———, do solemnly swear [or affirm] that I will faithfully support and true allegiance bear the Constitution of the United States, and the State of Mississippi, and obey the laws thereof; that I am not disqualified from holding office by the Constitution of the United States or the State of Mississippi; that I have never, as a member of any convention, voted for or signed any ordinance of secession; that I have never, as a member of any State legislature, voted for the call of any convention that passed any such ordinance; that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter, So help me God.”

Sec. 27. It shall be the duty of the legislature to provide by law for the support of institutions for the education of the deaf, dumb, and blind and also for the treatment and care of the insane.

Sec. 28. The legislature shall provide houses of refuge for the correction and reformation of juvenile offenders.

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Sec. 29. The county boards shall have power to provide farms as an asylum for those persons who, by reason of age, infirmity, or other misfortune, may have claims upon the sympathy and aid of society.

Article XIII: ORDINANCE AND SCHEDULE

MODE OF REVISING THE CONSTITUTION

Whenever two-thirds of each branch of the legislature shall deem any change, alteration, or amendment necessary to this constitution, such proposed change, alteration, or amendment shall be read and passed by a two-thirds vote of each house, respectively, on each day for three several days; public notice shall then be given by the secretary of state at least three months preceding the next general election, at which the qualified electors shall vote directly for or against such change, alteration, or amendment; and if more than one amendment shall be submitted at one time, they shall be submitted in such manner and form that the people may vote for or against each amendment separately; and if it shall appear that a majority of the qualified electors voting for members of the legislature shall have voted for the proposed change, alteration, or amendment, then it shall be inserted by the next succeeding legislature as a part of this constitution, and not otherwise: Provided, That no amendment which may be made prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eighty-five shall in any manner affect the eighteenth section of the bill of rights.

SCHEDULE

Section 1. The ordinance of secession of the State of Mississippi, passed January 9, 1861, is hereby declared to be null and void. The present and all previous constitutions of the State of Mississippi are hereby declared to be repealed and annulled by this constitution.

Sec. 2. All laws now in force in this State, not enacted in furtherance of secession and rebellion, and not repugnant to this constitution, shall continue in operation until they shall expire by their own limitation, or be altered or repealed by the legislature, except the hereinafter-mentioned laws, to wit:

“An act to change the name of the county of Jones, and for other purposes,” approved December 1, ad 1865.

“An act to establish a ferry across the Mississippi River at Vicksburgh,” approved November 29, ad 1865.

“An act to provide for the removal and location of the seat of justice of Scott County,” approved November 8, ad 1865.

“An act suplemental to an act entitled ‘An act to provide for the removal and location of the seat of justice of Scott County,’ approved November 8, 1865,” approved December 1, ad 1865.

Sec. 3. The legislature shall provide for the removal of causes now pending in the courts of this State to courts created by or under this constitution.

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ORDINANCE

Secs. 4 to 13 inclusive. [Expunged.]a

Sec. 14. The members of the committee of five appointed by this convention, and the clerk thereof, shall receive the same compensation as the members of the convention.

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Sec. 15. If any candidate receiving the highest number of votes cast cannot take the oath of office prescribed in this constitution, then, and in that case, the candidate receiving the next highest vote shall be entitled to enter upon and perform the duties of the office upon taking and subscribing to said oath.

B. B. Eggleston, President.
Thad. P. Sears, Secretary.

AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF 1868

(Amendment I)

Add to section five, article twelve, the following: Nor shall the state assume, redeem, secure, or pay any indebtedness or pretended indebtedness claimed to be due by the State of Mississippi, to any person, association or corporation whatsoever, claiming the same as owners, holders, or assignees of any bond or bonds, now generally known as Union Bank bonds, or Planters’ Bank bonds.

(Amendment II)

Section six, article eight, amended as follows: All proceeds of lands now, or hereafter vested in this state by escheat or purchase, or forfeiture for taxes, and the clear proceeds of all fines collected in the several counties for any breach of the penal laws, and all moneys received for licenses granted under the laws of the state, for the sale of intoxicating liquors or keeping of dram shops, shall be collected in legal currency of the United States, and be paid into the treasury, to be distributed pro rata among the educable children of the state, in the manner provided for by law.

(Amendment III)

As a substitute for the seventeenth section of the sixth article of the constitution, read the following, to-wit: The legislature shall divide the state into a convenient number of chancery districts. Chancellors shall be appointed in the same manner as the judges of the circuit courts. Their qualifications shall be regulated by law, and they shall hold their office for the term of four years. They shall hold a court in each county, at least twice in each year, and shall receive such compensation as may be provided by law.

[The three foregoing amendments were inserted by resolution of the legislature, January 18, 1876.]

(Amendment IV)

As a substitute for section (6) six, of article (4) four of the constitution:

The legislature shall meet at the seat of government on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January, in the year 1878, and biennially thereafter, unless sooner convened by the governor. The time and place of meeting may be altered by law.

[Inserted by resolution of the legislature, January 22, 1878.]

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CONSTITUTION OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI—1890*a

We, the people of Mississippi, in Convention assembled, grateful to Almighty God, and invoking His blessing on our work, do ordain and establish this Constitution.

Article 1: DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS

Section 1. The powers of the government of the State of Mississippi shall be divided into three distinct departments, and each of them confided to a separate magistracy, to-wit: those which are legislative to one; those which are judicial to another; and those which are executive to another.

Sec. 2. No person or collection of persons, being one, or belonging to one, of these departments, shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others. The acceptance of an office in either of said departments shall, of itself, and at once, vacate any and all offices held by the person so accepting in either of the other departments.

Article 2: BOUNDARIES OF THE STATE

Sec. 3. The limits and boundaries of the State of Mississippi are as follows, to-wit: Beginning on the Mississippi river (meaning thereby the center of said river or thread of the stream) where the southern boundary line of the State of Tennessee strikes the same, as run by B. A. Ludlow, D. W. Connelly and W. Petrie, commissioners appointed for that purpose on the part of the State of Mississippi in ad, 1837, and J. D. Graham and Austin Miller, commissioners appointed for that purpose on the part of Tennessee; thence east along the said boundary line of the State of Tennessee to a point on the west bank of the Tennessee river, six four-pole chains south of and above the mouth of Yellow Creek; thence up the said river to the mouth of Bear Creek; thence by a direct line to what was formerly the northwest corner of the county of Washington, Alabama; thence on a direct line to a point ten miles east of the Pascagoula river on the Gulf of Mexico; thence westwardly, including all the islands within six leagues of the shore, to the most eastern junction of Pearl river with Lake Borgne; thence up said Pearl river to the thirty-first degree of north latitude; thence west along the said degree of latitude to the midle or thread of the stream of the Mississippi river; Edition: current; Page: [2091] thence up the middle of the Mississippi river, or thread of the stream, to the place of beginning, including all islands lying east of the thread of the stream of said river, and also including any lands which were at any time heretofore a part of this State.

Sec. 4. The legislature shall have power to consent to the acquisition of additional territory by the State and to make the same a part thereof; and the legislature may settle disputed boundaries between this State and its coterminous States whenever such disputes arise.

Article 3: BILL OF RIGHTS

Sec. 5. All political power is vested in, and derived from, the people; all government of right originates with the people, is founded upon their will only, and is instituted solely for the good of the whole.

Sec. 6. The people of this State have the inherent, sole and exclusive right to regulate the internal government and police thereof, and to alter and abolish their constitution and form of government whenever they may deem it necessary to their safety and happiness; provided, such change be not repugnant to the constitution of the United States.

Sec. 7. The right to withdraw from the Federal Union on account of any real or supposed grievance, shall never be assumed by this State, nor shall any law be passed in derogation of the paramount allegiance of the citizens of this State to the government of the United States.

Sec. 8. All persons resident in this State, citizens of the United States, are hereby declared citizens of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 9. The military shall be in strict subordination to the civil power.

Sec. 10. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against the same or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court.

Sec. 11. The right of the people peaceably to assemble and petition the government on any subject shall never be impaired.

Sec. 12. The right of every citizen to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person or property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned, shall not be called in question, but the legislature may regulate or forbid carrying concealed weapons.

Sec. 13. The freedom of speech and of the press shall be held sacred, and in all prosecutions for libel the truth may be given in evidence, and the jury shall determine the law and the facts under the direction of the court; and if it shall appear to the jury that the matter charged as libelous is true, and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted.

Sec. 14. No person shall be deprived of life, liberty or property, except by due process of law.

Sec. 15. There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in this State, otherwise than in the punishment of crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted.

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Sec. 16. Ex post facto laws, or laws impairing the obligation of contracts, shall not be passed.

Sec. 17. Private property shall not be taken or damaged for public use except on due compensation being first made to the owner or owners thereof, in a manner to be prescribed by law; and whenever an attempt is made to take private property for a use alleged to be public, the question whether the contemplated use be public shall be a judicial question, and as such determined without regard to legislative assertion that the use is public.

Sec. 18. No religious test as a qualification for office shall be required; and no preference shall be given by law to any religious sect, or mode of worship; but the free enjoyment of all religious sentiments and the different modes of worship shall be held sacred. The rights hereby secured shall not be construed to justify acts of licentiousness injurious to morals or dangerous to the peace and safety of the State, or to exclude the Holy Bible from use in any public school of this State.

Sec. 19. Human life shall not be imperiled by the practice of dueling; and any citizen of this State who shall hereafter fight a duel, or assist in the same as second, or send, accept, or knowingly carry a challenge therefor, whether such act be done in the State, or out of it, or who shall go out of the State to fight a duel, or to assist in the same as second, or to send, accept or carry a challenge, shall be disqualified from holding any office under this constitution and shall be disfranchised.

Sec. 20. No person shall be elected or appointed to office in this State for life or during good behavior, but the term of all offices shall be for some specified period.

Sec. 21. The privilege of the writ of habeas corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it, nor ever without the authority of the legislature.

Sec. 22. No person’s life or liberty shall be twice placed in jeopardy for the same offense; but there must be an actual acquittal or conviction on the merits to bar another prosecution.

Sec. 23. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses and possessions, from unreasonable seizure or search; and no warrant shall be issued without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, specially designating the place to be searched and the person or thing to be seized.

Sec. 24. All courts shall be open; and every person for an injury done him in his lands, goods, person or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and right and justice shall be administered without sale, denial or delay.

Sec. 25. No person shall be debarred from prosecuting or defending any civil cause, for or against him or herself before any tribunal in this State, by him or herself, or counsel, or both.

Sec. 26. In all criminal prosecutions the accused shall have a right to be heard by himself or counsel, or both, to demand the nature and cause of the accusation, to be confronted by the witnesses against him, to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and in all prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy and public Edition: current; Page: [2093] trial by an impartial jury of the county where the offense was committed; and he shall not be compelled to give evidence against himself; but in prosecutions for rape, adultery, fornication, sodomy or the crime against nature, the court may in its discretion exclude from the court room all persons except such as are necessary in the conduct of the trial.

Sec. 27. No person shall for any indictable offense, be proceeded against criminally by information, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or the militia when in actual service, or by leave of the court for misdemeanor in office; but the legislature in cases not punishable by death or by imprisonment in the penitentiary, may dispense with the inquest of the grand jury, and may authorize prosecutions before justices of the peace, or such other inferior court or courts as may be established, and the proceedings in such cases shall be regulated by law.

Sec. 28. Cruel or unusual punishment shall not be inflicted, nor excessive fines be imposed.

Sec. 29. Excessive bail shall not be required; and all persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offenses when the proof is evident or presumption great.

Sec. 30. There shall be no imprisonment for debt.

Sec. 31. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 32. The enumeration of rights in this constitution shall not be construed to deny or impair others retained by, and inherent in, the people.

Article 4: LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT

Sec. 33. The legislative power of this State shall be vested in the legislature, which shall consist of a senate, and a house of representatives.

Sec. 34. The house of representatives shall consist of members chosen every four years by the qualified electors of the several counties and representative districts.

Sec. 35. The senate shall consist of members to be chosen every four years by the qualified electors of the several districts.

Sec. 36. The legislature shall meet at the seat of government in regular session, on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January of the year ad, 1892, and every four years thereafter; and in special session on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in January of the year ad, 1894, and every four years thereafter, unless sooner convened by the governor. The special sessions shall not continue longer than thirty days unless the governor, deeming the public interest to require it, shall extend the sitting by proclamation in writing to be sent to and entered upon the journals of each house, for a specific number of days, and then it may continue in session to the expiration of that time. At such special sessions the members shall receive not more compensation or salary than ten cents mileage, and a per diem of not exceeding five dollars; and none but appropriation and revenue bills shall be considered except such other matters as may be acted upon at an extraordinary session called by the governor.

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Sec. 37. Elections for members of the legislature shall be held in the several counties and districts as provided by law.

Sec. 38. Each house shall elect its own officers, and shall judge of the qualifications, return and election of its own members.

Sec. 39. The senate shall choose a president pro tempore to act in the absence or disability of its presiding officer.

QUALIFICATIONS AND PRIVILEGES OF LEGISLATORS

Sec. 40. Members of the legislature before entering upon the discharge of their duties shall take the following oath: “I, ——— ———, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully support the constitution of the United States and of the State of Mississippi; that I am not disqualified from holding office by the constitution of this State; that I will faithfully discharge my duties as a legislator; that I will, as soon as practicable hereafter, carefully read (or have read to me) the constitution of this State, and will endeavor to note, and as a legislator, to execute all the requirements thereof imposed on the legislature; and I will not vote for any measure or person because of a promise of any other member of this legislature to vote for any measure or person, or as a means of influencing him or them to do so. So help me God.”

Sec. 41. No person shall be a member of the house of representatives who shall not have attained the age of twenty-one years, and who shall not be a qualified elector of the State, and who shall not have been a resident citizen of the State four years, and of the county two years, immediately preceding his election. The seat of a member of the house of representatives shall be vacated on his removal from the county or flotorial district from which he was elected.

Sec. 42. No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained the age of twenty-five years, who shall not have been a qualified elector of the State four years, and who shall not be an actual resident of the district or territory he may be chosen to represent, for two years before his election. The seat of a senator shall be vacated upon his removal from the district from which he was elected..

Sec. 43. No person liable as principal for public moneys unaccounted for shall be eligible to a seat in either house of the legislature, or to any office of profit or trust, until he shall have accounted for and paid over all sums for which he may have been liable.

Sec. 44. No person shall be eligible to a seat in either house of the legislature, or to any office of profit or trust, who shall have been convicted of bribery, perjury, or other infamous crime; and any person who shall have been convicted of giving, or offering, directly, or indirectly, any bribe to procure his election or appointment; and any person who shall give, or offer any bribe to procure the election or appointment of any person to office, shall, on conviction thereof, be disqualified from holding any office of profit or trust under the laws of this State.

Sec. 45. No senator or representative during the term for which he was elected, shall be eligible to any office of profit, which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which have been increased, during the time such senator or representative was in office, except to such offices as may be filled by an election of the people.

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Sec. 46. The members of the legislature shall severally receive from the State treasury, compensation for their services, to be prescribed by law, which may be increased or diminished, but no alteration of such compensation of members shall take effect during the session at which it is made.

Sec. 47. No member of the legislature shall take any fee or reward, or be counsel in any measure pending before either house of the legislature, under penalty of forfeiting his seat, upon proof thereof to the satisfaction of the house, of which he is a member.

Sec. 48. Senators and representatives shall, in all cases, except treason, felony, theft or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of the legislature, and for fifteen days before the commencement and after the termination of each session.

TRIAL OF OFFICERS

Sec. 49. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment; but two-thirds of all the members present must concur therein. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate, and, when sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be sworn to do justice according to law and the evidence.

Sec. 50. The governor, and all other civil officers of this State, shall be liable to impeachment for treason, bribery, or any high crime or misdemeanor in office.

Sec. 51. Judgment in such cases shall not extend further than removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust or profit in this State; but the party convicted shall, nevertheless, be subject to indictment, trial, judgment and punishment according to law.

Sec. 52. When the governor shall be tried, the chief justice of the supreme court shall preside; and when the chief justice is disabled, disqualified, or refuses to act, the judge of the supreme court, next oldest in commission, shall preside; and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of all the senators present.

Sec. 53. For reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient ground of impeachment, the governor shall, on the joint address of two-thirds of each branch of the legislature, remove from office the judges of the supreme and inferior courts; but the cause or causes of removal shall be spread on the journal, and the party charged be notified of the same and have an opportunity to be heard by himself or counsel, or both, before the vote is finally taken and decided.

RULES OF PROCEDURE

Sec. 54. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a less number may adjourn from day to day, and compel the attendance of absent members in such manner and under such penalties as each shall provide.

Sec. 55. Each house may determine rules of its own proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior; and with the concurrence of two-thirds of the members present, expel a member; but no member, unless expelled for theft, bribery or corruption, shall be expelled a second time for the same offense. Both houses shall from time to time, publish journals of their proceedings, except such parts as may Edition: current; Page: [2096] in their opinion require secrecy; and the yeas and nays, on any question, shall be entered on the journal, at the request of one-tenth of the members present; and the yeas and nays shall be entered on the journal on the final passage of every bill.

Sec. 56. The style of the laws of the State shall be: “Be it enacted by the legislature of the State of Mississippi.”

Sec. 57. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting.

Sec. 58. The doors of each house, when in session, or in committee of the whole, shall be kept open, except in cases which may require secrecy; and each house may punish, by fine and imprisonment, any person not a member, who shall be guilty of disrespect to the house, by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in its presence, or who shall in any way disturb its deliberations during the session; but such imprisonment shall not extend beyond the final adjournment of that session.

Sec. 59. Bills may originate in either house and be amended or rejected in the other; and every bill shall be read on three different days in each house unless two-thirds of the house where the same is pending shall dispense with the rules; and every bill shall be read in full immediately before the vote on its final passage; and every bill having passed both houses, shall be signed by the president of the senate and the speaker of the house of representatives, in open session; but before either shall sign any bill, he shall give notice thereof, suspend business in the house over which he presides, have the bill read by its title, and on demand of any member, have it read in full; and all such proceedings shall be entered on the journal.

Sec. 60. No bill shall be so amended in its passage through either house as to change its original purpose, and no law shall be passed except by bill; but orders, votes and resolutions of both houses, affecting the prerogatives and duties thereof, or relating to adjournment, to amendments to the constitution, to the investigation of public officers, and the like, shall not require the signature of the governor; and such resolutions, orders and votes, may empower legislative committees to administer oaths, to send for persons and papers, and generally make legislative investigations effective.

Sec. 61. No law shall be revived or amended by reference to its title only, but the section or sections as amended, or revived, shall be inserted at length.

Sec. 62. No amendment to bills by one house shall be concurred in by the other, except by a vote of a majority thereof, taken by yeas and nays and the names of those voting for and against recorded upon the journals; and reports of committees of conference shall in like manner be adopted in each house.

Sec. 63. No appropriation bill shall be passed by the legislature which does not fix definitely the maximum sum thereby authorized to be drawn from the treasury.

Sec. 64. No bill passed after the adoption of this constitution to make appropriations of money out of the State treasury, shall continue in force more than six months after the meeting of the legislature at its next regular session; nor shall such bill be passed except Edition: current; Page: [2097] by the votes of a majority of all the members elected to each house of the legislature.

Sec. 65. All votes on the final passage of any measure shall be subject to reconsideration for at least one whole legislative day, and no motion to reconsider such vote shall be disposed of adversely on the day on which the original vote was taken, except on the last day of the session.

Sec. 66. No law granting a donation, or gratuity, in favor of any person or object shall be enacted, except by the concurrence of two-thirds of each branch of the legislature, nor by any vote for a sectarian purpose or use.

Sec. 67. No new bills shall be introduced into either house of the legislature during the last three days of the session.

Sec. 68. Appropriation and revenue bills shall, at regular sessions of the legislature, have precedence in both houses over all other business, and no such bills shall be passed during the last five days of the session.

Sec. 69. General appropriation bills shall contain only the appropriations to defray the ordinary expenses of the executive, legislative and judicial departments of the government, to pay interest on State bonds, and to support the common schools. All other appropriations shall be made by separate bills, each embracing but one subject. Legislation shall not be engrafted on appropriation bills, but the same may prescribe the conditions on which the money may be drawn, and for what purposes paid.

Sec. 70. No revenue bill nor any bill providing for assessments of property for taxation, shall become a law, except by a vote of at least three-fifths of the members of each house present, and voting.

Sec. 71. Every bill introduced into the legislature shall have a title, and the title ought to indicate clearly the subject matter, or matters, of the proposed legislation. Each committee to which a bill may be referred, shall express in writing its judgment of the sufficiency of the title of the bill, and this, too, whether the recommendation be that the bill do pass, or do not pass.

Sec. 72. Every bill which shall pass both houses shall be presented to the governor of the State. If he approve, he shall sign it, but if he does not approve, he shall return it, with his objection, to the house in which it originated, which shall enter the objections at large upon its journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If, after such reconsideration, two-thirds of that house shall agree to pass the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other house, by which, likewise, it shall be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of that house, it shall become a law; but in all such cases, the votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the names of the persons voting for, and against the bill, shall be entered on the journal of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor, within five days, (Sunday excepted), after it has been presented to him, it shall become a law, in like manner as if he had signed it, unless the legislature, by adjournment, prevent its return; in which case it shall be a law unless sent back within three days after the beginning of the next session of the legislature. No bill shall be approved when the legislature is not in session.

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Sec. 73. The governor may veto parts of any appropriation bill, and approve parts of the same, and the portions approved shall be law.

Sec. 74. No bill shall become a law until it shall have been referred to a committee of each house and returned therefrom with a recommendation in writing.

Sec. 75. No law of a general nature, unless therein otherwise provided, shall be enforced until sixty days after its passage.

Sec. 76. In all elections by the legislature the members shall vote viva voce, and the votes shall be entered on the journals.

Sec. 77. The governor shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as may occur in either house of the legislature, and the persons thereupon chosen shall hold their seats for the unexpired term.

INJUNCTION

Sec. 78. It shall be the duty of the legislature to regulate by law the cases in which deductions shall be made from salaries of public officers, for neglect of official duty and the amount of said deduction.

Sec. 79. The legislature shall provide by law for the sale of all delinquent tax lands. The courts shall apply the same liberal principles in favor of such titles as in sale by execution. The right of redemption from all sales of real estate, for the non-payment of taxes, or special assessments, of any and every character whatsoever, shall exist, on conditions to be prescribed by law, in favor of owners and persons interested in such real estate, for a period of not less than two years.

Sec. 80. Provision shall be made by general laws to prevent the abuse by cities, towns and other municipal corporations of their powers of assessment, taxation, borrowing money and contracting debts.

Sec. 81. The legislature shall never authorize the permanent obstruction of any of the navigable waters of this State; but may provide for the removal of such obstructions as now exist, whenever the public welfare demands; this section shall not prevent the construction, under proper authority, of draw-bridges for railroads, or other roads, nor the construction of “booms and chutes” for logs in such manner as not to prevent the safe passage of vessels, or logs, under regulations to be provided by law.

Sec. 82. The legislature shall fix the amount of the penalty of all official bonds, and may, as far as practicable, provide that the whole or a part of the security required for the faithful discharge of official duty shall be made by some guarantee company or companies.

Sec. 83. The legislature shall enact laws to secure the safety of persons from fires in hotels, theatres and other public places of resort.

Sec. 84. The legislature shall enact laws to limit, restrict or prevent the acquiring and holding of land in this State by non-resident aliens, and may limit or restrict the acquiring or holding of lands by corporations.

Sec. 85. The legislature shall provide by general law for the working of public roads by contract or by county prisoners, or both. Such law may be put in operation only by a vote of the board of supervisors in those counties where it may be desirable.

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Sec. 86. It shall be the duty of the legislature to provide by law for the treatment and care of the insane; and the legislature may provide for the care of the indigent sick in the hospitals in the State.

LOCAL LEGISLATION

Sec. 87. No special or local law shall be enacted for the benefit of individuals or corporations, in cases which are, or can be provided for by a general law, or where the relief sought can be given by any court of this State; nor shall the operation of any general law be suspended by the legislature for the benefit of any individual or private corporation or association, and in all cases where a general law can be made applicable, and would be advantageous, no special law shall be enacted.

Sec. 88. The legislature shall pass general laws, under which local and private interests shall be provided for and protected, and under which cities and towns may be chartered and their charters amended, and under which corporations may be created, organized, and their acts of incorporation altered; and all such laws shall be subject to repeal or amendment.

Sec. 89. There shall be apointed in each house of the legislature a standing committee on local and private legislation; the house committee to consist of seven representatives, and the senate committee, of five senators. No local or private bill shall be passed by either house until it shall have been referred to said committee thereof, and shall have been reported back with a recommendation in writing that it do pass, stating affirmatively the reasons therefor, and why the end to be accomplished should not be reached by a general law, or by a proceeding in court; or if the recommendation of the committee be that the bill do not pass, then it shall not pass the house to which it is so reported unless it be voted for by a majority of all the members elected thereto. If a bill is passed in conformity to the requirements hereof, other than such as are prohibited in the next section, the courts shall not, because of its local, special or private nature, refuse to enforce it.

Sec. 90. The legislature shall not pass local, private or special laws in any of the following enumerated cases, but such matters shall be provided for only by general laws, viz:

  • (a) Granting divorces.
  • (b) Changing the names of persons, places or corporations.
  • (c) Providing for changes of venue in civil and criminal cases.
  • (d) Regulating the rate of interest on money.
  • (e) Concerning the settlement or administration of any estate, or the sale or mortgage of any property, of any infant, or of a person of unsound mind, or of any deceased person.
  • (f) The removal of the disability of infancy.
  • (g) Granting to any person, corporation, or association, the right to have any ferry, bridge, road or fish-trap.
  • (h) Exemption of property from taxation, or from levy or sale.
  • (i) Providing for the adoption or legitimation of children.
  • (j) Changing the law of descent and distribution.
  • (k) Exempting any person from jury, road, or other civil duty (and no person shall be exempted therefrom by force of any local or private law). Edition: current; Page: [2100]
  • (l) Laying out, opening, altering and working roads and highways.
  • (m) Vacating any road or highway, town plat, street, alley or public grounds.
  • (n) Selecting, drawing, summoning or empaneling grand or petit juries.
  • (o) Creating, increasing, or decreasing the fees, salary or emoluments of any public officer.
  • (p) Providing for the management or support of any private or common school, incorporating the same or granting such school any privileges.
  • (q) Relating to stock laws, water courses and fences.
  • (r) Conferring the power to exercise the right of eminent domain, or granting to any person, corporation, or association the right to lay down railroad tracks, or street car tracks, in any other manner than that prescribed by general law.
  • (s) Regulating the practice in courts of justice.
  • (t) Providing for the creation of districts for the election of justices of the peace and constables.
  • (u) Granting any lands under control of the State to any person or corporation.

PROHIBITIONS

Sec. 91. The legislature shall not enact any law for one or more counties, not applicable to all the counties in the State, increasing the uniform charge for the registration of deeds, or regulating costs and charges and fees of officers.

Sec. 92. The legislature shall not authorize payment to any person of the salary of a deceased officer beyond the date of his death.

Sec. 93. The legislature shall not retire any officer on pay, or part pay, or make any grant to such retiring officer.

Sec. 94. The legislature shall never create by law any distinction between the rights of men and women to acquire, own, enjoy, and dispose of property of all kinds, or their power to contract in reference thereto. Married women are hereby fully emancipated from all disability on account of coverture. But this shall not prevent the legislature from regulating contracts between husband and wife; nor shall the legislature be prevented from regulating the sale of homesteads.

Sec. 95. Lands belonging to, or under the control of the State, shall never be donated directly, or indirectly, to private corporations or individuals, or to railroad companies. Nor shall such land be sold to corporations or associations for a less price than that for which it is subject to sale to individuals. This, however, shall not prevent the legislature from granting a right of way, not exceeding one hundred feet in width, as a mere easement, to railroads across State land, and the legislature shall never dispose of the land covered by said right of way so long as such easement exists.

Sec. 96. The legislature shall never grant extra compensation, fee or allowance, to any public officer, agent, servant or contractor, after service rendered, or contract made, nor authorize payment, or part payment, of any claim under any contract, not authorized by law: Edition: current; Page: [2101] but appropriations may be made for expenditures in repelling invasion, preventing, or suppressing insurrections.

Sec. 97. The legislature shall have no power to revive any remedy which may have become barred by lapse of time, or by any statute of limitation of this State.

Sec. 98. No lottery shall ever be allowed, or be advertised by newspapers, or otherwise, or its tickets be sold in this State; and the legislature shall provide by law for the enforcement of this provision; nor shall any lottery heretofore authorized be permitted to be drawn or its tickets sold.

Sec. 99. The legislature shall not elect any other than its own officers, State librarian, and United States senators; but this section shall not prohibit the legislature from appointing presidential electors.

Sec. 100. No obligation or liability of any person, association, or corporation held or owned by this State, or levee board, or any county, city, or town thereof, shall ever be remitted, released or postponed, or in any way diminished by the legislature, nor shall such liability or obligation be extinguished except by payment thereof into the proper treasury; nor shall such liability, or obligation be exchanged or transferred except upon payment of its face value; but this shall not be construed to prevent the legislature from providing by general law for the compromise of doubtful claims.

Sec. 101. The seat of government of the State shall be at the city of Jackson, and shall not be removed or relocated without the assent of a majority of the electors of the State.

MISCELLANEOUS

Sec. 102. All general elections for State and county officers shall commence and be holden every four years, on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, until altered by law; and the electors, in all cases except in cases of treason, felony and breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections and in going to and returning therefrom.

Sec. 103. In all cases not otherwise provided for in this constitution, the legislature may determine the mode of filling all vacancies, in all offices, and in cases of emergency provisional apointments may be made by the governor, to continue until the vacancy is regularly filled; and the legislature shall provide suitable compensation for all officers, and shall define their respective powers.

Sec. 104. Statutes of limitation in civil causes shall not run against the State, or any subdivision, or municipal corporation thereof.

Sec. 105. The legislature shall provide for the enumeration of the whole number of inhabitants, and the qualified electors of the State, once in every ten years; and the first enumeration shall be made during the two months beginning on the first Monday of June, 1895, and the legislature shall provide for the same by law.

Sec. 106. There shall be a State librarian, to be chosen by the legislature, on joint vote of the two houses, to serve for four years, whose duties and compensation shall be prescribed by law. Any woman, a resident of the State four years, and who has attained the age of twenty years, shall be eligible to said office.

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Sec. 107. All stationery, printing, paper, and fuel, used by the legislature, and other departments of the government, shall be furnished, and the printing and binding of the laws, journals, department reports, and other printing and binding, and the repairing and furnishing the halls and rooms used for the meeting of the legislature, and its committees, shall be performed under contract, to be given to the lowest responsible bidder, below such maximum and under such regulations as may be prescribed by law. No member of the legislature or officer of any department shall be in any way interested in such contract; and all such contracts shall be subject to the approval of the governor and State treasurer.

Sec. 108. Whenever the legislature shall take away the duties pertaining to any office, then the salary of the officer shall cease.

Sec. 109. No public officer or member of the legislature shall be interested directly or indirectly in any contract with the State, or any district, county, city or town thereof, authorized by any law passed, or order made by any board of which he may be or may have been a member, during the term for which he shall have been chosen, or within one year after the expiration of such term.

Sec. 110. The legislature may provide, by general law, for condemning rights of way for private roads, where necessary for ingress and egress by the party applying, on due compensation being first made to the owner of the property; but such rights of way shall not be provided for in incorporated cities and towns.

Sec. 111. All lands comprising a single tract sold in pursuance of decree of court, or execution, shall be first offered in subdivisions not exceeding one hundred and sixty acres, or one-quarter section, and then offered as an entirety, and the price bid for the latter shall control only when it shall exceed the aggregate of the bids for the same in subdivisions as aforesaid; but the chancery court, in cases before it, may decree otherwise if deemed advisable to do so.

Sec. 112. Taxation shall be uniform and equal throughout the State. Property shall be taxed in proportion to its value. The legislature may, however, impose a tax per capita upon such domestic animals as from their nature and habits are destructive of other property. Property shall be assessed for taxes under general laws, and by uniform rules, according to its true value. But the legislature may provide for a special mode of valuation and assessment for railroads, and railroad and other corporate property, or for particular species of property belonging to persons, corporations or associations not situated wholly in one county. But all such property shall be assesed at its true value, and no county shall be denied the right to levy county and sepcial taxes upon such assessment as in other cases of property situated and assessed in the county.

Sec. 113. The auditor shall, within sixty days after the adjournment of the legislature, prepare and publish a full statement of all money expended at such session, specifying the items and amount of each item, and to whom, and for what paid; and he shall also publish the amounts of all appropriations.

Sec. 114. Returns of all elections by the people shall be made to the secretary of state in such manner as shall be provided by law.

Sec. 115. The fiscal year of the State of Mississippi shall commence on the first day of October, and end on the thirtieth day of September of each year; and the auditor of public accounts and the treasurer of Edition: current; Page: [2103] the State shall compile, and have published, a full and complete report, showing the transactions of their respective offices on or before the thirty-first day of December of each year for the preceding fiscal year.

Article 5: EXECUTIVE

Sec. 116. The chief executive power of the State shall be vested in a governor, who shall hold his office for four years, and who shall be ineligible as his immediate successor in office.

Sec. 117. The governor shall be at least thirty years of age, and shall have been a citizen of the United States twenty years, and shall have resided in this State five years next preceding the day of his election.

Sec. 118. The governor shall receive for his services such compensation as may be fixed by law, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during his term of office.

Sec. 119. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the army and navy of the State, and of the militia, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States.

Sec. 120. The governor may require information, in writing, from the officers in the executive departments of the State on any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices.

Sec. 121. The governor shall have power to convene the legislature in extraordinary session whenever in his judgment the public interest requires it. Should the governor deem it necessary to convene the legislature, he shall do so by public proclamation, in which he shall state the subjects and matters to be considered by the legislature when so convened; and the legislature when so convened, as aforesaid, shall have no power to consider or act upon subjects or matters other than those designated in the proclamation of the governor, by which the session is called, except impeachments, and examination into the accounts of State officers. The legislature when so convened may also act on and consider such other matters as the governor may in writing submit to them while in session. The governor may convene the legislature at the seat of government, or at a different place, if that shall become dangerous from an enemy, or from disease; and in case of a disagreement between the two houses, with respect to time of adjournment, adjourn them to such time as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the next stated meeting of the legislature.

Sec. 122. The governor shall, from time to time, give the legislature information of the state of the government, and recommend for consideration such measures as may be deemed necessary and expedient.

Sec. 123. The governor shall see that the laws are faithfully executed.

Sec. 124. In all criminal and penal cases, excepting those of treason and impeachment, the governor shall have power to grant reprieves and pardons, to remit fines, and in cases of forfeiture, to stay the collection, until the end of the next session of the legislature, and by and with the consent of the senate to remit forfeitures. In cases of treason, he shall have power to grant reprieves, by and with the consent of the senate, but may respite the sentence until the end of the Edition: current; Page: [2104] next session of the legislature; but no pardon shall be granted before conviction, and in cases of felony after conviction no pardon shall be granted until the applicant therefor shall have published for thirty days, in some newspaper in the county where the crime was committed, and in case there be no newspaper published in said county, then in an adjoining county, his petition for pardon, setting forth therein the reasons why such pardon should be granted.

Sec. 125. The governor shall have the power, and it is hereby made his duty, to suspend alleged defaulting State and county treasurers, and defaulting tax collectors, pending the investigation of their respective accounts, and to make temporary appointments of proper persons to fill the offices while such investigations are being made, and the legislature shall provide for the enforcement of this provision by appropriate legislation.

Sec. 126. There shall be a seal of the State kept by the governor, and used by him officially, and be called the great seal of the State of Mississippi.

Sec. 127. All commissions shall be in the name and by the authority of the State of Mississippi, be sealed with the great seal of State, and be signed by the governor, and attested by the secretary of state.

Sec. 128. There shall be a lieutenant-governor, who shall be elected at the same time, in the same manner, and for the same term, and who shall possess the same qualifications as required of the governor.

Sec. 129. The lieutenant-governor shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate. In committee of the whole, he may debate all questions, and when there is an equal division in the senate, or on a joint vote of both houses, he shall give the casting vote.

Sec. 130. The lieutenant-governor shall receive for his services the same compensation as the speaker of the house of representatives.

Sec. 131. When the office of governor shall become vacant, by death or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor shall possess the powers and discharge the duties of said office. When the governor shall be absent from the State, or unable from protracted illness to perform the duties of the office, the lieutenant-governor shall discharge the duties of said office until the governor be able to resume his duties; but, if from disability or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor shall be incapable of performing said duties, or if he be absent from the State, the president of the senate pro tempore shall act in his stead; but if there be no such president, or if he be disqualified by like disability, or be absent from the State, then the speaker of the house of representatives shall assume the office of governor, and perform said duties; and in case of the inability of the foregoing officers to discharge the duties of governor, the secretary of state shall convene the senate, to elect a president pro tempore. The officer discharging the duties of governor shall receive the compensation as such. Should a doubt arise as to whether a vacancy has occurred in the office of governor or as to whether any one of the disabilities mentioned in this section exists or shall have ended, then the secretary of state shall submit the question in doubt to the judges of the supreme court, who, or a majority of whom, shall investigate and determine said question; and shall furnish to said secretary of state an opinion in writing determining the question submitted to them, which opinion when rendered as aforesaid shall be final and conclusive.

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Sec. 132. In case the election for lieutenant governor shall be contested, the contest shall be tried and determined in the same manner as a contest for the office of governor.

Sec. 133. There shall be a secretary of State, who shall be elected as herein provided. He shall be at least twenty-five years of age, a citizen of the State five years next preceding the day of his election, and he shall continue in office during the term of four years, and shall be keeper of the capitol; he shall keep a correct register of all official acts and proceedings of the governor; and shall, when required, lay the same, and all papers, minutes and vouchers relative thereto, before the legislature, and he shall perform such other duties as may be required of him by law. He shall receive such compensation as shall be prescribed.

Sec. 134. A State treasurer and an auditor of public accounts shall be elected as herein provided, who shall hold their offices for the term of four years, and shall possess the same qualifications as required for the secretary of state; they shall receive such compensation as may be provided by law. Said treasurer and auditor of public accounts shall be ineligible to immediately succeed themselves or each other in office.

Sec. 135. There shall be a sheriff, coroner, treasurer, assessor and surveyor for each county, to be selected as elsewhere provided herein, who shall hold their offices for four years. The sheriff and treasurer shall be ineligible to immediately succeed themselves or each other in office.

Sec. 136. All officers named in this article shall hold their offices during the term for which they were selected, unless removed, and until their successors shall be duly qualified to enter on the discharge of their respective duties.

Sec. 137. It shall be the duty of the state treasurer, within ten days after the first day of January and July of each year, to publish a statement under oath, in some newspaper published at the seat of government, showing the condition of the treasury on said days, the balance on hand and in what funds, together with a certificate of the governor that he has verified the count of the funds in the treasury and found the balance, stated by the treasurer, actually in the vaults of the treasury, or as the truth may be. And it shall be the duty of the governor at such times as he may deem proper, to go to the treasury, without giving notice to the treasurer, and verify the cash balance as shown by the books, and to publish the fact that he has done so, and whether the amount called for by the books be actually in the treasury, and stating whether the treasurer had any notice whatever that the verification would be made.

Sec. 138. The sheriff, coroner, treasurer, assessor, surveyor, clerks of the courts, and members of the board of supervisors of the several counties, and all other officers exercising local jurisdiction therein, shall be selected in the manner provided by law for each county.

Sec. 139. The legislature may empower the governor to remove and appoint officers, in any county or counties or municipal corporations, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 140. The governor of the State shall be chosen in the following manner: On the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November of ad, 1895, and on the first Tuesday after first Monday of November Edition: current; Page: [2106] in every fourth year thereafter, until the day shall be changed by law, an election shall be held in the several counties and districts created for the election of members of the house of representatives in this State, for governor, and the person receiving in any county or such legislative district the highest number of votes cast therein, for said office, shall be holden to have received as many votes as such county or district is entitled to members in the house of representatives, which last named votes are hereby designated “electoral votes.” In all cases where a representative is apportioned to two or more counties or districts the electoral vote based on such representative shall be equally divided among such counties or districts. The returns of said election shall be certified by the election commissioners, or a majority of them, of the several counties, and transmitted, sealed, to the seat of government, directed to the secretary of state, and shall be by him safely kept and delivered to the speaker of the house of representatives at the next ensuing session of the legislature within one day after he shall have been elected. The speaker shall, on the next Tuesday after he shall have received said returns, open and publish them in the presence of the house of representatives, and said house shall ascertain and count the vote of each county and legislative district and decide any contest that may be made concerning the same, and said decision shall be made by a majority of the whole number of members of the house of representatives concurring therein, by a viva voce vote, which shall be recorded in its journal; provided, in case the two highest candidates have an equal number of votes in any county or legislative district, the electoral vote of such county or legislative district shall be considered as equally divided between them. The person found to have received a majority of all the electoral votes, and also a majority of the popular vote, shall be declared elected.

Sec. 141. If no person shall receive such majorities, then the house of representatives shall proceed to choose a governor from the two persons who shall have received the highest number of popular votes; the election shall be by viva voce vote, which shall be recorded in the journal, in such manner as to show for whom each member voted.

Sec. 142. In case of an election of governor or any State officer by the house of representatives, no member of that house shall be eligible to receive any appointment from the governor or other State officer so elected, during the term for which he shall be selected.

Sec. 143. All other State officers shall be elected at the same time, and in the same manner as provided for election of governor.

Article 6: JUDICIARY

Sec. 144. The judicial power of the State shall be vested in a supreme court and such other courts as are provided for in this constitution.

Sec. 145. The supreme court shall consist of three judges, any two of whom, when convened, shall form a quorum. The legislature shall divide the State into three supreme court districts, and the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint one judge for and from each district; but the removal of a judge to Edition: current; Page: [2107] the State capital during his term of office shall not render him ineligible as his own successor for the district from which he has removed. The present incumbents shall be considered as holding their terms of office from the State at large.

Sec. 146. The supreme court shall have such jurisdiction as properly belongs to a court of appeals.

Sec. 147. No judgment or decree in any chancery or circuit court rendered in a civil cause, shall be reversed or annulled on the ground of want of jurisdiction to render said judgment or decree, from any error or mistake as to whether the cause in which it was rendered was of equity or common law jurisdiction; but if the supreme court shall find error in the proceedings other than as to jurisdiction, and it shall be necessary to remand the case, the supreme court may remand it to that court which in its opinion can best determine the controversy.

Sec. 148. The supreme court shall be held twice in each year at the seat of government, at such time as the legislature may provide.

Sec. 149. The term of office of the judges of the supreme court shall be nine years. The office of one of said judges shall be vacated in three years, one in six years, and one in nine years, so that at the expiration of every three years one of said judges shall be appointed as aforesaid.

Sec. 150. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the supreme court who shall not have attained the age of thirty years at the time of his appointment, and who shall not have been a practicing attorney and a citizen of the State for five years immediately preceding such appointment.

Sec. 151. All vacancies which may occur in said court from death, resignation, or removal, shall be filled by appointment as aforesaid; but if a vacancy shall occur during the recess of the legislature, the governor shall appoint a successor who shall hold his office until the end of the next session of the senate unless his nomination shall be sooner rejected.

Sec. 152. The legislature shall divide the State into convenient circuit and chancery court districts.

Sec. 153. The judges of the circuit courts and of the chancery courts shall be appointed by the governor, with the advice and consent of the senate, and shall hold their offices for the term of four years.

Sec. 154. No person shall be eligible to the office of judge of the circuit or of the chancery court, who shall not have been a practicing lawyer for five years, and who shall not have attained the age of twenty-six years, and who shall not have been five years a citizen of this State.

Sec. 155. The judges of the several courts of this State shall, before they proceed to execute the duties of their respective offices, take the following oath or affirmation, to-wit: “I, ——— ———, solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will administer justice without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich, and that I will faithfully and impartially discharge and perform all the duties incumbent upon me as ——— ——— according to the best of my ability and understanding, agreeably to the constitution of the United States, and the constitution and laws of the State of Mississippi; so help me God.”

Sec. 156. The circuit court shall have original jurisdiction in all Edition: current; Page: [2108] matters civil and criminal in this State not vested by this constitution in some other court, and such appellate jurisdiction as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 157. All causes that may be brought in the circuit court whereof the chancery court has exclusive jurisdiction shall be transferred to the chancery court.

Sec. 158. A circuit court shall be held in each county at least twice in each year, and the judges of said courts may interchange circuits with each other in such manner as may be provided by law.

Sec. 159. The chancery court shall have full jurisdiction in the following matters and cases, viz:

  • (a) All matters in equity.
  • (b) Divorce and alimony.
  • (c) Matters testamentary and of administration.
  • (d) Minor’s business.
  • (e) Cases of idiocy, lunacy and persons of unsound mind.
  • (f) All cases of which the said court had jurisdiction under the laws in force when this constitution is put in operation.

Sec. 160. And in addition to the jurisdiction heretofore exercised by the chancery court in suits to try title and to cancel deeds and other clouds upon title to real estate, it shall have jurisdiction in such cases to decree possession, and to displace possession, to decree rents and compensation for improvements and taxes; and in all cases where said court heretofore exercised jurisdiction, auxiliary to courts of common law, it may exercise such jurisdiction to grant the relief sought although the legal remedy may not have been exhausted or the legal title established by a suit at law.

Sec. 161. And the chancery court shall have jurisdiction, concurrent with the circuit court, of suits on bonds of fiduciaries and public officers for failure to account for money or property received or wasted or lost by neglect or failure to collect, and of suits involving inquiry into matters of mutual accounts; but if the plaintiff brings his suit in the circuit court, that court may, on application of the defendant, transfer the cause to the chancery court if it appears that the accounts to be investigated are mutual and complicated.

Sec. 162. All causes that may be brought in the chancery court whereof the circuit court has exclusive jurisdiction shall be transferred to the circuit court.

Sec. 163. The legislature shall provide by law for the due certification of all causes that may be transferred to or from any chancery court or circuit court, for such reformation of the pleadings therein as may be necessary, and the adjudication of the costs of such transfer.

Sec. 164. A chancery court shall be held in each county at least twice in each year.

Sec. 165. No judge of any court shall preside on the trial of any cause where the parties or either of them shall be connected with him by affinity or consanguinity, or where he may be interested in the same, except by the consent of the judge and of the parties. Whenever any judge of the supreme court or the judge or chancellor of any district, in this State, shall, for any reason, be unable or disqualified to preside at any term of court, or in any case where the attorneys engaged therein shall not agree upon a member of the bar to preside in his place, the governor may commission another, or Edition: current; Page: [2109] others, of law knowledge to preside at such term or during such disability or disqualification in the place of the judge or judges so disqualified. When either party shall desire, the supreme court for the trial of any cause shall be composed of three judges. No judgment or decree shall be affirmed by disagreement of two judges constituting a quorum.

Sec. 166. The judges of the supreme court, of the circuit courts and the chancellors shall receive for their services a compensation to be fixed by law, which shall not be increased or diminished during their continuance in office.

Sec. 167. All civil officers shall be conservators of the peace, and shall be, by law, vested with ample power as such.

Sec. 168. The clerk of the supreme court shall be elected as other State officers for the term of four years, and the clerk of the circuit court and the clerk of the chancery court shall be selected in each county in the manner provided by law, and shall hold office for the term of four years, and the legislature shall provide by law what duties shall be performed during vacation by the clerks of the circuit and chancery courts, subject to the approval of the court.

Sec. 169. The style of all process shall be “The State of Mississippi,” and all prosecutions shall be carried on in the name and by authority of the “State of Mississippi,” and all indictments shall conclude “against the peace and dignity of the State.”

Sec. 170. Each county shall be divided into five districts. A resident freeholder of each district shall be selected, in the manner prescribed by law, and the five so chosen shall constitute the board of supervisors of the county, a majority of whom may transact business. The board of supervisors shall have full jurisdiction over roads, ferries and bridges, to be exercised in accordance with such regulations as the legislature may prescribe, and perform such other duties as may be required by law. The clerk of the chancery court of each county shall be clerk of the board of supervisors.

Sec. 171. A competent number of justices of the peace and constables shall be chosen in each county in the manner provided by law, for each district, who shall hold their office for the term of four years. No person shall be eligible to the office of justice of the peace who shall not have resided two years in the district next preceding his selection. The jurisdiction of justices of the peace shall extend to causes in which the principal amount in controversy shall not exceed the sum of two hundred dollars; and they shall have jurisdiction concurrent with the circuit court over all crimes whereof the punishment prescribed does not extend beyond a fine and imprisonment in the county jail; but the legislature may confer on the justices of the peace exclusive jurisdiction in such petty misdemeanors as it shall see proper. In all causes tried by a justice of the peace, the right of appeal shall be secured under such rules and regulations as shall be prescribed by law, and no justice of the peace shall preside at the trial of any cause where he may be interested, or the parties or either of them shall be connected with him by affinity or consanguinity, except by the consent of the justice of the peace and of the parties.

Sec. 172. The legislature shall, from time to time, establish such other inferior courts as may be necessary, and abolish the same whenever deemed expedient.

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Sec. 173. There shall be an attorney-general elected at the same time and in the same manner as the governor is elected, whose term of office shall be four years, and whose compensation shall be fixed by law. The qualifications for the attorney-general shall be the same as herein prescribed for judges of the circuit and chancery courts.

Sec. 174. A district attorney for each circuit court district shall be selected in the manner provided by law, whose term of office shall be four years, whose duties shall be prescribed by law, and whose compensation shall be a fixed salary.

Sec. 175. All public officers, for willful neglect of duty, or misdemeanor in office, shall be liable to presentment or indictment by a grand jury, and upon conviction, shall be removed from office, and otherwise punished as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 176. No person shall be a member of the board of supervisors who is not a resident freeholder in the district for which he is chosen. The value of real estate necessary to be owned to qualify persons in the several counties to be members of said board shall be fixed by law.

Sec. 177. The governor shall have power to fill any vacancy which may happen during the recess of the senate, in the office of judge or chancellor, by making a temporary appointment of an incumbent, which shall expire at the end of the next session of the senate, unless a successor shall be sooner appointed, and confirmed by the senate. When a temporary appointment of a judge or chancellor has been made during the recess of the senate, the governor shall have no power to remove the person or appointee, nor power to withhold his name from the senate for their action.

Article 7: CORPORATION

Sec. 178. Corporations shall be formed under general laws only. The legislature shall have power to alter, amend or repeal any charter of incorporation now existing, and revocable, and any that may hereafter be created, whenever in its opinion it may be for the public interest to do so; provided, however, that no injustice shall be done to the stockholders. No charter for any private corporation for pecuniary gain shall be granted for a longer period than ninety-nine years. In assessing for taxation the property and franchises of corporations, having charters for a longer period than ninety-nine years, the increased value of such property and franchises arising from such longer duration of their charters shall be considered and assessed; but any such corporation shall have the right to surrender the excess over ninety-nine years of its charter.

Sec. 179. The legislature shall never remit the forfeiture of the franchise of any corporation now existing, nor alter nor amend the charter thereof, nor pass any general nor special law for the benefit of such corporation, except upon the condition that such corporation shall thereafter hold its charter and franchises subject to the provisions of this constitution; and the reception by any corporation of any provision of any such laws, or the taking of any benefit or advantage from the same, shall be conclusively held an agreement by such corporation to hold thereafter its charter and franchises under the provisions hereof.

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Sec. 180. All existing charters or grants of corporate franchise under which organizations have not in good faith taken place at the adoption of this constitution shall be subject to the provisions of this article; and all such charters under which organizations shall not take place in good faith and business be commenced within one year from the adoption of this constitution, shall thereafter have no validity; and every charter or grant of corporate franchise hereafter made shall have no validity, unless an organization shall take place thereunder and business be commenced within two years from the date of such charter or grant.

Sec. 181. The property of all private corporations for pecuniary gain shall be taxed in the same way and to the same extent as the property of individuals, but the legislature may provide for the taxation of banks and banking capital, by taxing the shares according to the value thereof, (augmented by the accumulations, surplus and unpaid dividends,) exclusive of real estate, which shall be taxed as other real estate. Exemptions from taxation to which corporations are legally entitled at the adoption of this constitution, shall remain in full force and effect for the time of such exemptions as expressed in their respective charters, or by general laws, unless sooner repealed by the legislature. And domestic insurance companies shall not be required to pay a greater tax in the aggregate than is required to be paid by foreign insurance companies doing business in this State, except to the extent of the excess of their ad valorem tax over the privilege tax imposed upon such foreign companies; and the legislature may impose privilege taxes on building and loan associations in lieu of all other taxes except on their real estate.

Sec. 182. The power to tax corporations and their property shall never be surrendered or abridged by any contract or grant to which the State or any political subdivision thereof may be a party, except that the legislature may grant exemption from taxation in the encouragement of manufactures and other new enterprises of public utility extending for a period not exceeding five years, the time of such exemptions to commence from date of charter, if to a corporation; and if to an individual enterprise, then from the commencement of work; but when the legislature grants such exemptions for a period of five years or less, it shall be done by general laws, which shall distinctly enumerate the classes of manufactures and other new enterprises of public utility entitled to such exemptions, and shall prescribe the mode and manner in which the right to such exemptions shall be determined.

Sec. 183. No county, city, town or other municipal corporation shall hereafter become a subscriber to the capital stock of any railroad or other corporation or association, or make appropriation, or loan its credit in aid of such corporation or association. All authority heretofore conferred for any of the purposes aforesaid by the legislature or by the charter of any corporation, is hereby repealed. Nothing in this section contained shall affect the right of any such corporation, municipality or county to make such subscription where the same has been authorized under laws existing at the time of the adoption of this constitution, and by a vote of the people thereof, had prior to its adoption, and where the terms of submission and subscription have been or shall be complied with, or to prevent the issue of renewal bonds, or the use of such other means as are or may Edition: current; Page: [2112] be prescribed by law for the payment or liquidation of such subscription, or of any existing indebtedness.

Sec. 184. All railroads which carry persons or property for hire, shall be public highways, and all railroad companies so engaged shall be common carriers. Any company organized for that purpose under the laws of the State, shall have the right to construct and operate a railroad between any points within this State, and to connect at the State line with roads of other States. Every railroad company shall have the right with its road to intersect, connect with, or cross any other railroad; and all railroad companies shall receive and transport each other’s passengers, tonnage and cars, loaded or empty, without unnecessary delay or discrimination.

Sec. 185. The rolling stock, belonging to any railroad company or corporation in this State, shall be considered personal property and shall be liable to execution and sale as such.

Sec. 186. The legislature shall pass laws to prevent abuses, unjust discrimination and extortion in all charges of express, telephone, sleeping car, telegraph and railroad companies, and shall enact laws for the supervision of railroads, express, telephone, telegraph, sleeping car companies and other common carriers in this State, by commission or otherwise, and shall provide adequate penalties, to the extent, if necessary for that purpose, of forfeiture of their franchises.

Sec. 187. No railroad hereafter constructed in this State, shall pass within three miles of any county seat without passing through the same, and establishing and maintaining a depot therein, unless prevented by natural obstacles; provided, such town or citizens shall grant the right-of-way through its limits, and sufficient ground for ordinary depot purposes.

Sec. 188. No railroad or other transportation company shall grant free passes or tickets, or passes or tickets at a discount, to members of the legislature, or any State, district, county or municipal officers, except railroad commissioners. The legislature shall enact suitable laws for the detection, prevention and punishment of violations of this provision.

Sec. 189. All charters granted to private corporations in this State shall be recorded in the chancery clerk’s office of the county in which the principal office or place of business of such company shall be located.

Sec. 190. The exercise of the right of eminent domain shall never be abridged, or so construed as to prevent the legislature from taking the property and franchises of incorporated companies, and subjecting them to public use; and the exercise of the police powers of the State shall never be abridged, or so construed as to permit corporations to conduct their business in such manner as to infringe upon the rights of individuals, or the general well being of the State.

Sec. 191. The legislature shall provide for the protection of the employees of all corporations doing business in this State from interference with their social, civil, or political rights by said corporations, their agents or employees.

Sec. 192. Provision shall be made by general laws whereby cities and towns may be authorized to aid and encourage the establishment of manufactories, gas-works, waterworks, and other enterprises of public utility other than railroads, within the limits of said cities Edition: current; Page: [2113] or towns, by exempting all property used for such purposes, from municipal taxation for a period not longer than ten years.

Sec. 193. Every employee of any railroad corporation shall have the same right and remedies for any injury suffered by him from the act or omission of said corporation or its employees, as are allowed by law to other persons not employees, where the injury results from the negligence of a superior agent or officer, or of a person having the right to control or direct the services of the party injured, and also when the injury results from the negligence of a fellow-servant engaged in another department of labor from that of the party injured, or of a fellow-servant on another train of cars, or one engaged about a different piece of work. Knowledge by any employee injured, of the defective or unsafe character or condition of any machinery, ways or appliances, shall be no defense to an action for injury caused thereby, except as to conductors or engineers in charge of dangerous or unsafe cars, or engines voluntarily operated by them. Where death ensues from any injury to employees, the legal or personal representatives of the person injured shall have the same right and remedies as are allowed by law to such representatives of other persons. Any contract or agreement, express or implied, made by any employee to waive the benefit of this section shall be null and void; and this section shall not be construed to deprive any employee of a corporation or his legal or personal representative, of any right or remedy that he now has by the law of the land. The legislature may extend the remedies herein provided for to any other class of employees.

Sec. 194. The legislature shall provide by law, that in all elections for directors or managers of incorporated companies, every stockholder shall have the right to vote in person or by proxy, for the number of shares of stock owned by him, for as many persons as there are directors or managers to be elected, or to cumulate said shares, so as to give one candidate as many votes as the number of directors multiplied by the number of his shares of stock shall equal, or to distribute them on the same principle among as many candidates as he shall see fit; and such directors or managers shall not be elected in any other manner; but no person who is engaged or interested in a competing business, either individually or as employee, or stockholder, shall serve on any board of directors of any corporation without the consent of a majority in interest of the stockholders thereof.

Sec. 195. Express, telegraph, telephone and sleeping car companies are declared common carriers in their respective lines of business and subject to liability as such.

Sec. 196. No transportation corporation shall issue stocks or bonds except for money, labor done, or in good faith agreed to be done, or money or property actually received; and all fictitious increase of stock or indebtedness shall be void.

Sec. 197. The legislature shall not grant to any foreign corporation or association, a license to build, operate or lease any railroad in this State; but in all cases where a railroad is to be built or operated, and the same shall be partly in this State and partly in another State, or in other States, the owners or projectors thereof shall first become incorporated under the laws of this State; nor shall any foreign corporation or association lease or operate any railroad in this State or Edition: current; Page: [2114] purchase the same, or any interest therein; consolidation of any railroad lines and corporations in this State with others shall be allowed only where the consolidated company shall become a domestic corporation of this State. No general or special law shall ever be passed for the benefit of any foreign corporation operating a railroad under an existing license from this State, or under an existing lease; and no grant of any right or privilege, and no exemption from any burden, shall be made to any such foreign corporation except upon the condition that the owners or stockholders thereof shall first organize a corporation in this State under the laws thereof, and shall thereafter operate and manage the same, and the business thereof under said domestic charter.

Sec. 198. The legislature shall enact laws to prevent all trusts, combinations, contracts and agreements inimical to the public welfare.

Sec. 199. The term corporation used in this article shall include all associations and all joint stock companies for pecuniary gain, having privileges not possessed by individuals or partnerships.

Sec. 200. The legislature shall enforce the provisions of this article by appropriate legislation.

Article 8: EDUCATION

Sec. 201. It shall be the duty of the legislature to encourage by all suitable means, the promotion of intellectual, scientific, moral and agricultural improvement, by establishing a uniform system of free public schools, by taxation, or otherwise, for all children between the ages of five and twenty-one years, and, as soon as practicable, to establish schools of higher grade.

Sec. 202. There shall be a superintendent of public education elected at the same time and in the same manner as the governor, who shall have the qualifications required of the secretary of state, and hold his office for four years and until his successor shall be elected and qualified, who shall have the general supervision of the common schools, and of the educational interests of the State, and who shall perform such other duties and receive such compensation, as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 203. There shall be a board of education, consisting of the secretary of state, the attorney-general, and the superintendent of public education, for the management and investment of the school funds, according to law, and for the performance of such other duties as may be prescribed. The superintendent and one other of said board shall constitute a quorum.

Sec. 204. There shall be a superintendent of public education in each county, who shall be appointed by the board of education by and with the advice and consent of the senate, whose term of office shall be four years, and whose qualifications, compensation and duties, shall be prescribed by law; provided, that the legislature shall have power to make the office of county school superintendent of the several counties elective, or may otherwise provide for the discharge of the duties of county superintendent, or abolish said office.

Sec. 205. A public school shall be maintained in each school district in the county at least four months during each scholastic year. A Edition: current; Page: [2115] school district neglecting to maintain its school four months, shall be entitled to only such part of the free school fund as may be required to pay the teacher for the time actually taught.

Sec. 206. There shall be a common school fund which shall consist of the poll tax (to be retained in the counties where the same is collected) and an additional sum from the general fund in the State treasury which together shall be sufficient to maintain the common schools for the term of four months in each scholastic year. But any county or separate school district may levy an additional tax to maintain its schools for a longer time than the term of four months. The common school fund shall be distributed among the several counties and separate school districts, in proportion to the number of educable children in each, to be determined from data collected through the office of the state superintendent of education, in the manner to be prescribed by law.

Sec. 207. Separate schools shall be maintained for children of the white and colored races.

Sec. 208. No religious or other sect, or sects, shall ever control any part of the school or other educational funds of this State; nor shall any funds be appropriated towards the support of any sectarian school; or to any school that at the time of receiving such appropriation is not conducted as a free school.

Sec. 209. It shall be the duty of the legislature to provide by law for the support of institutions for the education of the deaf, dumb, and blind.

Sec. 210. No public officer of this State, or any district, county, city or town thereof, nor any teacher or trustee of any public school, shall be interested in the sale, proceeds or profits of any books, apparatus or furniture to be used in any public school in this State. Penalties shall be provided by law for the violation of this section.

Sec. 211. The Legislature shall enact such laws as may be necessary to ascertain the true condition of the title to the 16th sections of land in this State, or land granted in lieu thereof, in the Choctaw purchase, and shall provide that the sixteenth section lands reserved for the support of township schools shall not be sold, nor shall they be leased for a longer term than ten years for a gross sum; but the legislature may provide for the lease of any of said lands for a term not exceeding twenty-five years for a ground rental payable annually, and, in case of uncleared lands, may lease them for such short term as may be deemed proper in consideration of the improvement thereof, with right thereafter to lease for a term or to hold on payment of ground rent.

Sec. 212. The rate of interest on the fund known as the Chickasaw school fund, and other trust funds for educational purposes, for which the State is responsible, shall be fixed and remain as long as said funds are held by the State, at six per centum per annum, from and after the close of the fiscal year ad, 1891, and the distribution of said interest shall be made semi-annually on the first of May and November of each year.

Sec. 213. The State having received and appropriated the land donated to it for the support of Agricultural and Mechanical Colleges, by the United States, and having, in furtherance of the beneficent design of Congress in granting said land, established the Agricultural and Mechanical College of Mississippi, and the Alcorn Agricultural Edition: current; Page: [2116] and Mechanical College, it is the duty of the State to sacredly carry out the conditions of the act of Congress, upon the subject, approved July 2d, ad, 1862, and the legislature shall preserve intact the endowments to, and support, said colleges.

Article 9: MILITIA

Sec. 214. All able-bodied male citizens of the State between the ages of eighteen and forty-five years shall be liable to military duty in the militia of this State, in such manner as the legislature may provide.

Sec. 215. The legislature shall provide for the organizing, arming, equipping and discipline of the militia, and for paying the same when called into active service.

Sec. 216. All officers of militia, except non-commissioned officers, shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the consent of the senate, or elected, as the legislature may determine; and no commissioned officer shall be removed from office except by the senate on suggestion of the governor, stating the ground on which such removal is recommended, or by the decision of a court-martial, pursuant to law, or at his own request.

Sec. 217. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the militia, except when it is called into the service of the United States, and shall have power to call forth the militia to execute the laws, repel invasion, and to suppress riots and insurrections.

Sec. 218. The governor shall nominate, and, by and with the consent of the senate, commission one major-general for the State, who shall be a citizen thereof, and also one brigadier-general for each congressional district, who shall be a resident of the district for which he shall be appointed, and each district shall constitute a militia division.

Sec. 219. The adjutant-general, and other staff officers to the commander-in-chief, shall be appointed by the governor, and their appointment shall expire with the governor’s term of office, and the legislature shall provide by law a salary for the adjutant-general commensurate with the duties of said office.

Sec. 220. The militia shall be exempt from arrest during their attendance on musters, and in going to and returning from the same, except in case of treason, felony or breach of the peace.

Sec. 221. The legislature is hereby required to make an annual appropriation for the efficient support and maintenance of the Mississippi National Guard, which shall consist of not less than one hundred men for each senator and representative to which this State may be entitled in the Congress of the United States; but no part of such funds shall be used in the payment of said guard except when in actual service.

Sec. 222. The legislature shall empower the board of supervisors of each county in the State to aid in supporting a military company or companies, of the Mississippi National Guard, within its borders, under such regulations, limitations and restrictions as may be prescribed by law.

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Article 10: THE PENITENTIARY AND PRISONS

Sec. 223. No penitentiary convict shall ever be leased or hired to any person or persons, or corporation, private or public or quasi public, or board, after December the 31st, ad 1894, save as authorized in the next section, nor shall any previous lease or hiring of convicts extend beyond that date; and the legislature shall abandon the system of such leasing or hiring as much sooner than the date mentioned as may be consistent with the economic safety of the State.

Sec. 224. The legislature may authorize the employment under State supervision, and the proper officers and employees of the State, of convicts on public roads or other public works, or by any levee board on any public levees, under such provisions and restrictions as it may from time to time see proper to impose; but said convicts shall not be let or hired to any contractor under said board, nor shall the working of convicts on public roads, or public works, by any levee board ever interfere with the preparation for or the cultivation of any crop which it may be intended shall be cultivated by the said convicts, nor interfere with the good management of the State farm, nor put the State to any expense.

Sec. 225. The legislature may place the convicts on a State farm or farms and have them worked thereon under State supervision exclusively, in tilling the soil or manufacturing, or both, and may buy farms for that purpose. It may establish a reformatory school or schools, and provide for keeping of juvenile offenders from association with hardened criminals. It may provide for the commutation of the sentence of convicts for good behavior, and for the constant separation of the sexes, and for the separation of the white and black convicts as far as practicable, and for religious worship for the convicts.

Sec. 226. Convicts sentenced to the county jail shall not be hired or leased to any person or corporation outside the county of their conviction, after the first day of January, ad, 1893, nor for a term which shall extend beyond that date.

Article 11: LEVEES

Sec. 227. A levee system shall be maintained in the State as provided in this article.

Sec. 228. The division heretofore made by the legislature of the alluvial land of the State into two levee districts, viz: The Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, and the Mississippi Levee District, as shown by the laws creating the same, and the amendments thereto, is hereby recognized, and said districts shall so remain until changed by law; but the legislature may hereafter add to either of said districts any other alluvial land in the State.

Sec. 229. There shall be a board of levee commissioners for the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, which shall consist of two members from each of the counties of Coahoma and Tunica, and one member from each of the remaining counties or parts of counties, Edition: current; Page: [2118] now or hereafter embraced within the limits of said district, and the governor may appoint a stockholder in the Louisville, New Orleans & Texas Railway Company as an additional commissioner; and there shall also be a board of levee commissioners for the Mississippi Levee District, which shall consist of two members from each of the counties of Bolivar and Washington, and one from each of the counties of Issaquena and Sharkey. In the event of the formation of a new county or counties out of the territory embraced in either or both of said levee districts such new counties shall each be entitled to representation and membership in the proper board or boards.

Sec. 230. All of said commissioners shall be qualified electors of the respective counties or parts of counties from which they may be chosen, except the one selected for the Louisville, New Orleans & Texas Railway Company; and the legislature shall provide that they shall each give bond for the faithful performance of his duties, and shall fix the penalty thereof; but the penalty of such bond in no instance shall be fixed at less than $10,000, and the sureties thereon shall be freeholders of the district.

Sec. 231. When the terms of the present levee commissioners shall expire, or whenever a vacancy shall occur or be about to occur, in either of said boards, the governor shall make appointments to fill vacancies, subject to the confirmation of the senate. The terms of office of said commissioners shall remain as provided by law at the adoption of this constitution, but this provision shall not require the appointment of a commissioner for the Louisville, New Orleans & Texas Railway Company, except in the discretion of the governor as provided.

Sec. 232. The commissioners of said levee districts shall have supervision of the erection, repair and maintenance of the levees in their respective districts.

Sec. 233. The levee boards shall have and are hereby granted authority and full power to appropriate private property in their respective districts for the purpose of constructing, maintaining and repairing levees therein; and when any owner of land, or any other person interested therein, shall object to the location or building of the levee thereon, or shall claim compensation for any land that may be taken, or for any damages he may sustain in consequence thereof, the president or other proper officer or agent of such levee board, or owner of such land, or other person interested therein, may forthwith apply for an assessment of the damages to which said person claiming the same may be entitled whereupon the proceedings as now provided by law shall be taken, viz: in the Mississippi Levee District, in accordance with the terms and provisions of section 3 of an act entitled “an act to amend an act to incorporate the Board of Levee Commissioners for Bolivar, Washington and Issaquena counties, and for other purposes,” approved, November, 27, ad, 1865, and to revise acts amendatory thereof, approved March 13, ad 1884; and in the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, in accordance with the terms and provisions of section three of an act entitled “an act to incorporate the board of levee commissioners for the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta, and for other purposes,” approved February 28, ad, 1884,” and the amendments thereto: but the legislature shall have full power to alter and amend said several acts, and to provide different manners of procedure.

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Sec. 234. No bill changing the boundaries of the district or affecting the taxation or revenue of the Yazoo-Mississippi Delta Levee District, or the Mississippi Levee District, shall be considered by the legislature unless said bill shall have been published in some newspaper in the county in which is situated the domicile of the board of levee commissioners of the levee district to be affected thereby, for four weeks prior to the introduction thereof into the legislature; and no such bill shall be considered for final passage by either the senate or house of representatives, unless the same shall have been referred to, and reported on, by an appropriate committee of each house in which the same may be pending; and no such committee shall consider or report on any such bill unless publication thereof shall have been made as aforesaid.

Sec. 235. Each levee board shall make at the end of each fiscal year, to the governor of this State, a report showing the condition of the levees, and recommending such additional legislation on the subject of the system as shall be thought necessary, and showing the receipts and expenditures of the board, so that each item, the amount and consideration therefor, shall distinctly appear, together with such other matters as it shall be thought proper to call to the attention of the legislature.

Sec. 236. The legislature shall impose for levee purposes, in addition to the levee taxes heretofore levied or authorized by law, a uniform tax of not less than two nor more than five cents an acre, per annum, upon every acre of land now, or hereafter, embraced within the limits of either, or both, of said levee districts. The taxes so derived shall be paid into the treasury of the levee board of the district in which the land charged with the same is situated; and the legislature, by the act imposing said tax, shall authorize said levee boards to fix the annual rate of taxation per acre within the limits aforesaid, and thereby require said levee boards, whenever a reduction is made by them in their other taxes, to make a proportionate reduction in the acreage tax hereinbefore mentioned; but said acreage tax shall not be reduced below two cents an acre per annum; and all reductions in such taxation shall be uniform in each said districts; but the rate of taxation need not be the same in both of them; and such specific taxes shall be assessed on the same assessment roll, and collected under the same penalties as the ad valorem taxes for levee purposes, and shall be paid at the same time with the latter. And no levee board shall ever be permitted to buy lands when sold for taxes; but the senate shall have a prior lien for the taxes due thereto. The legislature may provide for the discontinuance of the tax on cotton, but not in such manner as to affect outstanding bonds based on it, and on the discontinuance of the tax on cotton, shall impose another tax in lieu thereof, but the legislature may repeal the acreage tax required to be levied hereby, after the first day of January, ad, 1895.

Sec. 237. The legislature shall have full power to provide such system of taxation for said levee districts as it shall from time to time deem wise and proper.

Sec. 238. No property situated between the levee and the Mississippi river shall be taxed for levee purposes, nor shall damage be paid to any owner of land so situated because of it being left outside a levee.

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Sec. 239. The legislature shall require the levee boards to publish at each of their sessions, an itemized account embracing their respective receipts since the prior session, and such appropriations as have been made or ordered by them respectively, in some newspaper or newspapers of the district.

Article 12: FRANCHISE

Sec. 240. All elections by the people shall be by ballot.

Sec. 241. Every male inhabitant of this State, except idiots, insane persons and Indians not taxed, who is a citizen of the United States, twenty-one years old and upwards, who has resided in this State two years, and one year in the election district, or in the incorporated city or town, in which he offers to vote, and who is duly registered as provided in this article, and who has never been convicted of bribery, burglary, theft, arson, obtaining money or goods under false pretenses, perjury, forgery, imbezzlement or bigamy, and who has paid, on or before the first day of February of the year in which he shall offer to vote, all taxes which may have been legally required of him, and which he has had an opportunity of paying according to law, for the two preceding years, and who shall produce to the officers holding the election satisfactory evidence that he has paid said taxes, is declared to be a qualified elector; but any minister of the gospel in charge of an organized church shall be entitled to vote after six months residence in the election district, if otherwise qualified.

Sec. 242. The legislature shall provide by law for the registration of all persons entitled to vote at any election, and all persons offering to register shall take the following oath or affirmation: “I ——— ———, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I am twenty-one years old, (or I will be before the next election in this county) and that I will have resided in this State two years, and ——— election district of ——— county one year next preceding the ensuing election [or if it be stated in the oath that the person proposing to register is a minister of the gospel in charge of an organized church, then it will be sufficient to aver therein, two years residence in the State and six months in said election district], and am now in good faith a resident of the same, and that I am not disqualified from voting by reason of having been convicted of any crime named in the constitution of this State as a disqualification to be an elector; that I will truly answer all questions propounded to me concerning my antecedents so far as they relate to my right to vote, and also as to my residence before my citizenship in this district; that I will faithfully support the constitution of the United States and of the State of Mississippi, and will bear true faith and allegiance to the same. So help me God.” In registering voters in cities and towns, not wholly in one election district, the name of such city or town may be substituted in the oath for the election district. Any willful and corrupt false statement in said affidavit, or in answer to any material question propounded as herein authorized, shall be perjury.

Sec. 243. A uniform poll tax of two dollars, to be used in aid of the common schools, and for no other purpose, is hereby imposed on every male inhabitant of this State between the ages of twenty-one Edition: current; Page: [2121] and sixty years, except persons who are deaf and dumb or blind, or who are maimed by loss of hand or foot; said tax to be a lien only upon taxable property. The board of supervisors of any county may, for the purpose of aiding the common schools in that county, increase the poll tax in said county, but in no case shall the entire poll tax exceed in any one year three dollars on each poll. No criminal proceedings shall be allowed to enforce the collection of the poll tax.

Sec. 244. On and after the first day of January, ad, 1892, every elector shall, in addition to the foregoing qualifications, be able to read any section of the constitution of this State; or he shall be able to understand the same when read to him, or give a reasonable interpretation thereof. A new registration shall be made before the next ensuing election after January the first, ad, 1892.

Sec. 245. Electors in municipal elections shall possess all the qualifications herein prescribed, and such additional qualifications as may be provided by law.

Sec. 246. Prior to the first day of January, ad, 1896, the elections by the people in this State shall be regulated by an ordinance of this convention.

Sec. 247. The legislature shall enact laws to secure fairness in party primary elections, conventions or other methods of naming party candidates.

Sec. 248. Suitable remedies by appeal or otherwise shall be provided by law, to correct illegal or improper registration and to secure the elective franchise to those who may be illegally or improperly denied the same.

Sec. 249. No one shall be allowed to vote for members of the legislature or other officers who has not been duly registered under the constitution and laws of this State, by an officer of this State, legally authorized to register the voters thereof. And registration under the constitution and laws of this State by the proper officers of this State is hereby declared to be an essential and necessary qualification to vote at any and all elections.

Sec. 250. All qualified electors and no others shall be eligible to office as otherwise provided in this constitution.

Sec. 251. Electors shall not be registered within four months next before any election at which they may offer to vote; but appeals may be heard and determined and revision take place at any time prior to the election; and no person who, in respect to age and residence, would become entitled to vote, within the said four months, shall be excluded from registration on account of his want of qualification at the time of registration.

Sec. 252. The term of office of all elective officers under this constitution shall be four years, except as otherwise provided herein. A general election for all elective officers shall be held on the Tuesday next after the first Monday of November, ad, 1895, and every four (4) years thereafter; provided, the legislature may change the day and date of general elections to any day and date in October, November or December.

Sec. 253. The legislature may by a two-thirds vote of both houses, of all members elected, restore the right of suffrage to any person disqualified by reason of crime; but the reasons therefor shall be spread upon the journals, and the vote shall be by yeas and nays.

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Article 13: APPORTIONMENT

Sec. 254. The number of representatives in the lower house of the legislature shall be one hundred and thirty-three, to be apportioned as follows:

First—The counties of Choctaw, Covington, Greene, Hancock, Issaquena, Jones, Lawrence, Leflore, Marion, Neshoba, Pearl River, Perry, Quitman, Scott, Sharkey, Simpson, Smith, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tishomingo, Tunica, Wayne and Webster, each shall have one representative.

Second—The counties of Alcorn, Amite, Attala, Bolivar, Calhoun, Carroll, Chickasaw, Clay, Coahoma, DeSoto, Kemper, Lafayette, Madison, Newton, Pike, Pontotoc, Prentiss, Rankin, Tate, Union, Wilkinson and Yalobusha, each shall have two representatives.

Third—The counties of Copiah, Holmes, Marshall, Monroe, Noxubee, Panola, Warren and Washington, each shall have three representatives.

Fourth—The counties of Franklin and Lincoln each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Fifth—The counties of Tippah and Benton each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Sixth—The counties of Claiborne and Jefferson each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Seventh—The counties of Clarke and Jasper each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Eighth—The counties of Grenada and Montgomery, each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Ninth—The counties of Leake and Winston, each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Tenth—The counties of Harrison and Jackson, each shall have one representative and a floater between them.

Eleventh—The county of Yazoo shall have three representatives and the county of Hinds shall have three representatives, and they shall have a floater between them.

Twelfth—The county of Lauderdale shall have three representatives, one to be elected by the city of Meridian, one by the county outside the city limits, and one by the whole county including Meridian.

Thirteenth—The county of Adams outside of the city of Natchez shall have one representative and the city of Natchez one representative.

Fourteenth—The county of Lowndes shall have three representatives, two of whom shall be elected by that part of the county east of the Tombigbee river, and one by that portion of the county west of said river.

Fifteenth—The county of Oktibbeha shall have two representatives, one of whom shall be elected by that portion of the county east of the line running north and south between ranges thirteen and fourteen, and the other by that portion of the county west of said line.

Sixteenth—The county of Lee shall have two representatives, the county of Itawamba one, and a floater between them.

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Seventeenth—In counties divided into legislative districts, any citizen of the county eligible for election to the House of Representatives shall be eligible to represent any district thereof.

THE SENATE

Sec. 255. The number of senators shall be forty-five and are apportioned as follows:

First—The counties of Hancock, Harrison and Jackson shall constitute the first district, and elect one senator.

Second—The counties of Wayne, Jones, Perry and Greene the second district, and elect one senator.

Third—The counties of Jasper and Clarke the third district, and elect one senator.

Fourth—The counties of Simpson, Covington, Marion and Pearl River, the fourth district, and elect one senator.

Fifth—The counties of Rankin and Smith the fifth district and elect one senator.

Sixth—The counties of Pike and Franklin the sixth district, and elect one senator.

Seventh—The counties of Amite and Wilkinson the seventh district, and elect one senator.

Eighth—The counties of Lincoln and Lawrence the eighth district, and elect one senator.

Ninth—The county of Adams the ninth district, and elect one senator.

Tenth—The counties of Claiborne and Jefferson the tenth district, and elect one senator.

Eleventh—The county of Copiah the eleventh district, and elect one senator.

Twelfth—The counties of Hinds and Warren the twelfth district, and elect one senator each and a senator between them, to be chosen from the counties alternately, beginning with Hinds.

Thirteenth—The counties of Scott and Newton the thirteenth district, and elect one senator.

Fourteenth—The county of Lauderdale, the fourteenth district, and elect one senator.

Fifteenth—The counties of Kemper and Winston the fifteenth district, and elect one senator.

Sixteenth—The county of Noxubee the sixteenth district, and elect one senator.

Seventeenth—The counties of Leake and Neshoba the seventeenth district, and elect one senator.

Eighteenth—The county of Madison the eighteenth district, and elect one senator.

Nineteenth—The county of Yazoo the nineteenth district, and elect one senator.

Twentieth—The counties of Sharkey and Issaquena the twentieth district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-first—The county of Holmes the twenty-first district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-second—The county of Attala the twenty-second district and elect one senator.

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Twenty-third—The counties of Oktibbeha and Choctaw the twenty-third district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-fourth—The counties of Clay and Webster the twenty-fourth district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-fifth—The county of Lowndes the twenty-fifth district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-sixth—The counties of Carroll and Montgomery the twenty-sixth district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-seventh—The counties of Leflore and Tallahatchie the twenty-seventh district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-eighth—The counties of Yalobusha and Grenada the twenty-eighth district, and elect one senator.

Twenty-ninth—The counties of Washington and Sunflower the twenty-ninth district; the county of Washington shall elect one senator, and the counties of Washington and Sunflower a senator between them.

Thirtieth—The county of Bolivar the thirtieth district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-first—The counties of Chickasaw, Calhoun and Pontotoc the thirty-first district, and elect two senators; both senators shall at no time be chosen from the same county.

Thirty-second—The county of Lafayette the thirty-second district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-third—the county of Panola the thirty-third district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-fourth—The counties of Coahoma, Tunica and Quitman the thirty-fourth district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-fifth—The county of DeSoto the thirty-fifth district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-sixth—The counties of Union, Tippah, Benton, Marshall and Tate the thirty-sixth district, and elect three senators. The counties of Tate and Benton shall be entitled to one; the counties of Union and Tippah one; and the county of Marshall one.

Thirty-seventh—The counties of Tishomingo, Alcorn and Prentiss the thirty-seventh district, and elect one senator.

Thirty-eighth—The counties of Monroe, Lee and Itawamba the thirty-eighth district, and elect two senators, one of whom shall be a resident of the county of Monroe and the other a resident of Lee or Itawamba counties.

Sec. 256. The Legislature may at the first session after the State census of 1895 and decennially thereafter, make a new apportionment of Senators and Representatives. At each apportionment, each county then organized shall have at least one Representative. New counties afterwards created shall be represented as may be provided by law, until the next succeeding apportionment. The counties of Tishomingo, Alcorn, Prentiss, Lee, Itawamba, Tippah, Union, Benton, Marshall, Lafayette, Pontotoc, Monroe, Chickasaw, Calhoun, Yalobusha, Grenada, Carroll, Montgomery, Choctaw, Webster, Clay, Lowndes and Oktibbeha, or the territory now composing them, shall together never have less than forty-four representatives. The counties of Attala, Winston, Noxubee, Kemper, Leake, Neshoba, Lauderdale, Newton, Scott, Rankin, Clarke, Jasper, Smith, Simpson, Copiah, Franklin, Lincoln, Lawrence, Covington, Jones, Wayne, Edition: current; Page: [2125] Greene, Perry, Marion, Pike, Pearl River, Hancock, Harrison and Jackson, or the territory now composing them, shall together never have less than forty-four representatives; nor shall the remaining counties of the State, or the territory now composing them, ever have less than forty-four representatives. A reduction in the number of senators and representatives may be made by the legislature if the same be uniform in each of the three said divisions; but the number of representatives shall not be less than one hundred, nor more than one hundred and thirty-three; nor the number of senators less than thirty, nor more than forty-five.

Article 14: GENERAL PROVISIONS

Sec. 257. The political year of the State of Mississippi shall commence on the first Monday of January in each year.

Sec. 258. The credit of the State shall not be pledged or loaned in aid of any person, association or corporation; and the State shall not become a stockholder in any corporation or association, nor assume, redeem, secure or pay any indebtedness or pretended indebtedness alleged to be due by the State of Mississippi, to any person, association or corporation whatsoever, claiming the same as owners, holders or assignees of any bond or bonds, now generally known as “Union Bank” bonds and “Planters’ Bank” bonds.

Sec. 259. No county seat shall be removed unless such removal be authorized by two-thirds of the electors of the county voting therefor; but when the proposed removal shall be towards the center of the county, it may be made when a majority of the electors participating in the election shall vote therefor.

Sec. 260. No new county shall be formed unless a majority of the qualified electors voting in each part of the county or counties proposed to be dismembered and embraced in the new county, shall separately vote therefor; nor shall the boundary of any judicial district in a county be changed unless at an election held for that purpose, two-thirds of those voting assent thereto. The elections provided for in this and the section next preceding shall not be held in any county oftener than once in four years. No new county shall contain less than four hundred square miles; nor shall any existing county be reduced below that size.

Sec. 261. The expenses of criminal prosecutions, except those before justices of the peace, shall be borne by the county in which such prosecutions shall be begun; and all net fines and forfeitures shall be paid into the treasury of such county. Defendants in cases of conviction may be taxed with the costs.

Sec. 262. The board of supervisors shall have power to provide homes or farms as asylums for those persons, who, by reason of age, infirmity, or misfortune, may have claims upon the sympathy and aid of society; and the legislature shall enact suitable laws to prevent abuses by those having the care of such persons.

Sec. 263. The marriage of a white person with a negro or mulatto, or person who shall have one-eighth or more of negro blood, shall be unlawful and void.

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Sec. 264. No person shall be a grand or petit juror unless a qualified elector and able to read and write; but the want of any such qualification in any juror shall not vitiate any indictment or verdict. The legislature shall provide by law for procuring a list of persons so qualified, and the drawing therefrom of grand and petit jurors for each term of the circuit court.

Sec. 265. No person who denies the existence of a Supreme Being shall hold any office in this State.

Sec. 266. No person holding or exercising the rights or powers of any office of honor or profit, either in his own right, or as a deputy, or while otherwise acting for or in the name, or by the authority of another, under any foreign government, or under the government of the United States, shall hold or exercise in any way the rights and powers of any office of honor or profit under the laws or authority of this State, except notaries, commissioners of deeds, and United States commissioners.

Sec. 267. No person elected or appointed to any office or employment of profit under the laws of this State, or by virtue of any ordinance of any municipality of this State, shall hold such office or employment without personally devoting his time to the performance of the duties thereof.

Sec. 268. All officers elected or appointed to any office in this State, except judges and members of the legislature, shall, before entering upon the discharge of the duties thereof, take and subscribe the following oath:

“I ——————, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully support the constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the State of Missisippi, and obey the laws thereof; that I am not disqualified from holding the office of ——————; that I will faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter. So help me God.”

Sec. 269. Every devise or bequest of lands, tenements or hereditaments, or any interest therein, of freehold, or less than freehold, either present or future, vested or contingent, or of any money directed to be raised by the sale thereof, contained in any last will and testament, or codicil, or other testamentary writing, in favor of any religious or ecclesiastical corporation, sole or aggregate, or any religious or ecclesiastical society, or to any religious denomination, or association of persons, or to any person or body politic, in trust, either expressed or implied, secret or resulting, either for the use and benefit of such religious corporation, society, denomination or association, or for the purpose of being given or appropriated to charitable uses or purposes, shall be null and void, and the heir-at-law shall take the same property so devised or bequeathed, as though no testamentary disposition had been made.

Sec. 270. Every legacy, gift or bequest, of money or personal property, or of any interest, benefit or use therein, either direct, implied or otherwise, contained in any last will and testament or codocil, in favor of any religious or ecclesiastical corporation, sole or aggregate, or any religious or ecclesiastical society, or to any religious denomination or association, either for its own use or benefit, or for the purpose of being given or appropriated to charitable uses, shall be null and void, and the distributees shall take the same as though no such testamentary disposition had been made.

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Sec. 271. The legislature may provide for the consolidation of existing counties, if a majority of the qualified electors of such counties voting at an election held for that purpose, shall vote therefor.

Sec. 272. The legislature shall provide by law, pensions for indigent soldiers and sailors who enlisted and honorably served in the Confederate army or navy in the late civil war, who are now resident in this State, and are not able to earn a support by their own labor. Pensions shall also be allowed to the indigent widows of such soldiers or sailors now dead, when from age or disease, they cannot earn a support. Pensions shall also be allowed to the wives of such soldiers or sailors upon the death of the husband, if disabled and indigent as aforesaid. Pensions granted to windows shall cease upon their subsequent marriage.

Article 15: AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION

Sec. 273. Whenever two-thirds of each house of the legislature shall deem any change, alteration, or amendment necessary to this constitution, such proposed change, alteration or amendment shall be read and passed by a two-third’s vote of each house respectively, on each day, for three several days; public notice shall then be given by the secretary of state, at least three months preceding an election, at which the qualified electors shall vote directly for or against such change, alteration or amendment; and if more than one amendment shall be submitted at one time, they shall be submitted in such manner and form that the people may vote for or against each amendment separately; and if it shall appear that a majority of the qualified electors voting, shall have voted for the proposed change, alteration or amendment, then it shall be inserted by the next succeeding legislature as a part of this constitution, and not otherwise.

Schedule

That no inconvenience may arise from the changes in the Constitution of this State, and in order to carry the new Constitution into complete operation, it is hereby declared that—

Sec. 274. The laws of this State now in force, not repugnant to this constitution, shall remain in force until amended or repealed by the legislature or until they expire by limitation. All statute laws of this State repugnant to the provisions of this constitution, except as provided in the next three sections, shall continue and remain in force until the first day of April, ad, 1892, unless sooner repealed by the legislature.

Sec. 275. All laws of this State which are repugnant to the following portions of this constitution, shall be repealed by the adoption of this constitution, to-wit: laws repugnant to:

  • (a) All the ordinances of this convention.
  • (b) The provisions of section 183, prohibiting counties, cities and towns from voting subscriptions to railroad and other corporations or associations.
  • (c) The provisions of sections 223 to 226, inclusive, of Article 10, prohibiting the leasing of penitentiary convicts.
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Sec. 276. All laws of the State which are repugnant to the provisions of sections 240 to 253, inclusive, of Article 12, on the subject of franchise and elections, shall be and remain in force until the first day of January, ad, 1891, and no longer.

Sec. 277. All laws of this State which are repugnant to the provisions of Article 13, sections 254 to 256, inclusive, on the subject of the apportionment of representatives and senators in the legislature, shall be and remain in force until the first day of October, ad, 1891, but no longer.

Sec. 278. The governor shall as soon as practicable, appoint three suitable persons learned in the law, as commissioners whose duty it shall be to prepare and draft such general laws as are contemplated in this constitution and such other laws as shall be necessary and proper to put into operation the provisions thereof, and as may be appropriate to conform the general statutes of the State to the constitution. Said commissioners shall present the same when prepared to the legislature at its next regular session. And the legislature shall provide reasonable compensation therefor.

Sec. 279. All writs, actions, causes of action, proceedings, prosecutions and rights of individuals and bodies corporate and of the State, and charters of incorporation, shall continue; and all indictments which shall have been found or which shall hereafter be found, and all prosecutions begun, or that may be begun, for any crime or offense committed before the adoption of this constitution may be proceeded with and upon as if no change had taken place.

Sec. 280. For the trial and determination of all suits, civil and criminal, begun before the adoption of this constitution, the several courts of this State shall continue to exercise in said suits the powers and jurisdictions heretofore exercised by them; for all other matters said courts are continued as organized courts under this constitution, with such powers and jurisdiction as is herein conferred on them respectively.

Sec. 281. All fines, penalties, forfeitures and escheats accruing to the State of Mississippi under the constitution and laws heretofore in force shall accrue to the use of the State of Mississippi under this constitution, except as herein otherwise provided.

Sec. 282. All recognizances, bonds, obligations, and all other instruments entered into, or executed, before the adoption of this constitution, to the State of Mississippi, or to any State, county, public or municipal officer or body, shall remain binding and valid, and the rights and liabilities upon the same shall be continued and may be prosecuted as provided by law.

Sec. 283. All crimes and misdemeanors, and penal actions shall be tried, prosecuted and punished as though no change had taken place, until otherwise provided by law.

Sec. 284. All officers, State, district, county and municipal, now in office in this State, shall be entitled to hold the respective offices now held by them, except as otherwise herein provided, and until the expiration of the time for which they were respectively elected or appointed; and shall receive the compensation and fees now fixed by the statute laws in force when this constitution is adopted.

Sec. 285. The adoption of this constitution shall not have the effect, nor shall it be construed, to revive or put in force any law heretofore abrogated or repealed.

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This Constitution, adopted by the people of Mississippi in convention assembled, shall be in force and effect from and after this, the first day of November, ad, 1890.

S. S. Calhoon,
President and Delegate from Hinds county.
Attest: R. E. Wilson, Secretary.
E. L. Martin,
Ass’t Sec’y and Recording Clerk.
H. Denio,
Ass’t Sec’y and Journal Clerk.
W. H. Madden,
Ass’t Sec’y, and Engrossing and Enrolling Clerk.

ORDINANCES

Election Ordinances

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. All ballots in all elections held in this State shall be printed and distributed at public expense, as hereinafter provided, and shall be known as “official ballots.” The expense of printing all such ballots shall be paid out of the respective county treasuries, except that in municipal elections such expenses shall be paid by the respective cities or towns.

Sec. 2. The ballots printed for use under this ordinance shall contain the names of all the candidates who have been put in nomination not less than fifteen days previous to the day of election, by any convention, or other nominating body, or at a primary election of any political party in this State. It shall be the duty of one of the commissioners of election, designated for that purpose in his commission by the authority appointing said commissioner, to have printed all necessary ballots for use in said elections, except ballots in municipal elections, which shall be printed as herein provided by the authorities of the respective municipalities; and said officer shall cause to be printed by a printer, sworn to keep secret said ballots under penalties to be prescribed by law, the names of all candidates so nominated, upon the written request of any one or more of the candidates so nominated, or of any qualified elector who will affirm that he was a member of such convention or other nominating body, or participant in such primary election, and that the name presented by him was the nominee of said convention or nominating body, or primary election. Said commissioner shall also cause to be printed on said ballots the name of any qualified elector who has been requested to be a candidate for any office by a written petition signed by at least fifteen qualified electors, for any beat office or municipal office in any town of less than two hundred inhabitants, or fifty qualified electors for any other office, and when said petition or request has been presented to said commissioner not less than fifteen days before the election; but if any qualified elector has been nominated as aforesaid or has been requested to be a candidate as above specified less than fifteen Edition: current; Page: [2130] days before any election, then the name of such candidates shall not be printed upon said ballots. There shall be on said ballots one blank space under the title of each office to be voted for and in the event of the death of any candidate whose name shall have been printed, on the official ballot, the name of the candidate duly substituted in place of such deceased candidate may be written in such blank space by the voter.

Sec. 3. After the proper officer has been notified of the nomination, as hereinbefore specified, of any candidate for office, said officer shall not omit the name from the ballot unless upon the written request of the candidate so nominated made at least ten days before the election.

Sec. 4. Every ballot printed by virtue of this ordinance shall contain the names of all candidates nominated as hereinbefore specified and not duly withdrawn. The arrangement of the names of all of the candidates and the order in which the titles of the various officers to be voted for shall be made, and the size, print and quality of the official ballot, is left to the sound judgment of the officer charged with printing said ballots; but the arrangement need not be uniform. It shall be the duty of the secretary of state, with the approval of the governor, to furnish the commissioners of the several counties a sample of an official ballot, the general form of which shall be followed as nearly as practicable. Whenever the question of a constitutional amendment or other question or matter, admitting of an affirmative or negative vote, is submitted to a vote of the electors, such amendment, question or matter shall be printed on said official ballot, together with the names of the candidates, if any, and also the words yea and nay, to be arranged by the proper officer so that the voter can intelligently vote his preference by making a cross-mark (x) opposite the word indicating his preference; immediately following the title of each office shall be printed the words “Vote for one,” or “Vote for two,” or more according to the number to be elected. On the back, and outside of the ballot shall be printed “official ballot,” the name of the voting precinct or place for which said ballot is prepared and the date of the election.

Sec. 5. All official ballots intended for use at any voting precinct or place of voting shall be fastened together in convenient numbers and in some secure manner, but in such way that such ballots may be detached for use. A record of the number of official ballots printed and furnished to each voting precinct or place of voting, shall be kept and all such ballots accounted for by the officer or officers in each county charged with the printing of ballots.

Sec. 6. The officers charged with distributing or printing and distributing the official ballots, shall ascertain from the circuit clerk or other proper officer, at least ten days before the day of election, the number of registered voters in each election district, and shall also prepare full instructions for the guidance of electors at elections as to obtaining ballots, as to the manner of marking them, and as to obtaining new ballots in place of those accidentally spoiled, and such instructions shall be printed in large, clear type, on “cards of instruction,” and said commissioners shall furnish the same in sufficient numbers for the use of electors, and said cards shall be preserved by all officers of elections as far as practicable, and returned by them to the commissioners of election and may be used, if applicable, in subsequent elections.

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Sec. 7. The said commissioner of election shall appoint one or more deputy commissioners, from the respective election districts and deliver to them the proper number of ballots and cards of instruction, not less than one day before the election, and the deputy commissioners so selected to receive said ballots, shall be conservators of the peace and shall take an oath, to be administered by said commissioner, faithfully to perform their duties and not to attempt to guide, direct or influence any voter in the exercise of his right to vote.

Sec. 8. In case the official ballot prepared, shall be lost or destroyed, or in case of the death of any candidate whose name has been printed on the official ballot, the said commissioner, or his deputy shall have like ballots furnished in place of those lost or destroyed, if time remains therefor. If from any cause there should be no official ballot at a precinct and no sufficient time in which to have them printed, such ballots may be written, but if written by any one except the voter alone, for himself, the names of all candidates shall be written thereon without any special mark or device by which one name may be distinguished from another, and such tickets shall be marked by the voter as provided for printed ballots. Within three days after election day the inspectors shall report in writing to the commissioners of election, under oath, the loss of the official ballots, the number lost, and all facts connected therewith, which report the commissioners may deliver to the grand jury if deemed advisable.

Sec. 9. The deputy commissioners receiving the ballots from said commissioner shall distribute the same to the electors of the proper districts in the manner herein provided; and in case the said deputy commissioner shall fail to have said ballots at the election precincts at the proper time, or, if there, he shall fail to distribute the same, the inspectors of election, or those of them present at the election, shall provide said ballots and select some suitable person to distribute the same according to law, who shall take the oath required to be taken by the person to whom the said commissioner delivered said ballots, to be administered by any one of said inspectors.

Sec. 10. The sheriffs of the several counties in this State shall procure for their respective counties a sufficient number of voting compartments, shelves and tables for the use of electors, which shall be so arranged that it shall be impossible for one voter at one table, shelf or compartment to see another voter who is preparing his ballot. The number of such voting shelves, tables or compartments, shall not be less than one for every one hundred electors at each voting precinct. Each shelf, table and compartment, shall be furnished with a card of instruction posted in each compartment, and proper supplies for marking the ballots by electors.

Sec. 11. The deputy commissioners having the official ballots shall remain at a place convenient to the tables, shelves and compartments, for the distribution of ballots. When requested by each of the voters, the deputy commissioners aforesaid shall hand him an official ballot.

Sec. 12. On receiving his ballot the voter shall forthwith go into one of the voting compartments, and shall prepare his ballot by marking with ink in the appropriate margin or place, a cross (x) opposite the name of the candidate of his choice, for each office to be filled, or by filling in the name of the candidate substituted in the blank space as provided therefor, and marking a cross (x) opposite thereto, and likewise a cross (x) opposite the answer he desires Edition: current; Page: [2132] to give in case of an election on a constitutional amendment or other question or matter. Before leaving the voting shelf, table or compartment, the voter shall fold his ballot without displaying the marks thereon, but so that the words “official ballot,” followed by the designation of the election precinct for which the ballot is prepared and the date of the election, shall be visible to the officers of the election. He shall then cast his ballot in the manner provided by law, which shall be done without undue delay, and the voter shall then quit the said inclosed place as soon as he has voted. No voter shall be allowed to occupy a voting shelf, table, or compartment already occupied by another voter, nor longer than ten minutes if other voters are not waiting, nor longer than five minutes in case other voters are waiting. No person shall be allowed in the room in which said ballot boxes or compartments, tables and shelves are, except the officers of election and the person distributing the ballots, and those appointed by the officers holding the election, to aid them therein.

Sec. 13. No person shall take or remove any ballot from a polling place before the close of the polls. If any voter spoils a ballot he may obtain others, one at a time, not exceeding three in all, upon returning each spoiled one.

Sec. 14. Any voter who declares to the person or persons having the official ballots that by reason of blindness or other physical disability he is unable to mark his ballot, shall upon request secure the assistance of said person or one of the election inspectors in the marking thereof, and such person or officer shall certify on the outside of said ballot that it was marked with his assistance and shall not otherwise give information in regard to the same.

Sec. 15. If the voter marks more names than there are persons to be elected to an office, or if for any reason it is impossible to determine from the ballot the voter’s choice for any office voted for, his ballot so cast shall not be counted. No ballot not provided in accordance with this ordinance shall be deposited or counted.

Sec. 16. Any voter who shall, except as herein provided, allow his ballot to be seen by any person, or who shall make a false statement as to his inability to mark his ballot, or who shall place any mark upon his ballot by which it may be afterwards identified as the one voted by him, or any person who shall interfere or attempt to interfere with any voter when inside said inclosed space or when marking his ballot, or who shall endeavor to induce any voter before voting to show how he marks or has marked his ballot, shall be punished by a fine of not less than twenty-five nor more than one hundred dollars, and the election officers shall cause any person so doing to be arrested and carried before the proper officer or tribunal for commitment and trial for such offense.

Sec. 17. Any commissioner of election, or any other officer or person acting as such or performing election duty, who shall wilfully or knowingly refuse or fail to perform the duties herein required of him, or who shall violate any provision of this ordinance, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and be subject to a fine of not less than twenty-five nor more than one hundred dollars, or to imprisonment in the county jail not less than ten nor more than ninety days, or both, at the discretion of the court.

Sec. 18. The legislature shall have power to enact laws on the subjects of this ordinance, necessary for its efficiency, and not inconsistent Edition: current; Page: [2133] with its true intent and meaning. After January 1st, 1896, this ordinance may be repealed or amended by the legislature; but shall not be amended so as to conflict with any provisions of this constitution. All laws and parts of laws in conflict with any of the provisions of this ordinance are hereby annulled, and this ordinance shall take effect and be in force from and after the first day of January, ad, 1891.

Sec. 19. The boards of supervisors of the several counties, and the municipal authorities of the cities and towns of the State, are authorzied to allow reasonable compensation to officers for services under this ordinance.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

An Ordinance extending terms of State officers

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. The terms of the following State officers, to-wit: governor, lieutenant-governor, attorney-general, treasurer, auditor, secretary of state, superintendent of education and clerk of the supreme court, are hereby extended until the first Monday in January, 1896; and vacancies in the offices, the terms of which are hereby extended, shall be filled by appointment by the governor except as otherwise provided in this constitution.

Sec. 2. The persons whose terms of office are hereby extended shall be ineligible to immediately succeed themselves. And all bonded officers whose terms are hereby extended shall execute new official bonds on or before the date at which, but for this extension, their present terms of office would have expired; and in case of any failure to execute such bond the office shall thereby become vacant.

Sec. 3. A general election shall be held under this constitution on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November, 1891, for three railroad commissioners and for members of the legislature, district attorneys, and county and county district officers, whose terms shall expire on the first Monday in January, ad, 1896.

Sec. 4. There shall be a registration of the electors qualified under such provisions of this Constitution which are operative prior to the election in 1891, and such registration shall be made by the proper officers, and in the manner now prescribed by law when the same is not inconsistent with the provisions of the Constitution operative as aforesaid, and when repugnant, then according to the provisions thereof. The Board of Supervisors of the several counties shall provide proper registration books with the oath required by Section 242 of this Constitution.

An Ordinance making an appropriation to defray the expenses of the Convention

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. That there is hereby appropriated out of any moneys in the treasury not otherwise appropriated, a sum sufficient to defray Edition: current; Page: [2134] the expenses of the convention; and the auditor of public accounts is authorized to issue his warrants upon the treasurer, and the treasurer is authorized to pay the same for such sums as the Convention may direct and duly certify through its proper officers.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

An Ordinance to provide for raising money to defray the expenses of the Convention

Be it ordained by the People of Mississippi in Convention assembled:

Section 1. That the State Treasurer be authorized, with the consent and approval of the Governor, if it shall be deemed necessary, to negotiate a loan of not exceeding fifty thousand dollars, for a period of not more than four months, on such reasonable terms as the Governor shall approve, for the purpose of defraying the expenses of the Convention and for replacing moneys used for that purpose.

Sec. 2. That the faith of the State be pledged for the repayment of such loan; and the Treasurer is hereby authorized to hypothecate the $46,000 of unsold bonds isued in pursuance of the act approved March 15, 1884, and to sell the same for the purpose of raising the money to pay such loans, if he and the Governor shall deem the same necessary or proper.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

Penitentiary Ordinance

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. With the view of enabling the legislature at its next session to have before it the necessary information upon which to act, if it should determine to establish a penitentiary farm, it is made the duty of the governor to appoint five commissioners, who shall, prior to the next session of the legislature, carefully inspect such bodies of land as may be thought suitable for such location; and who shall make report to the governor as to the several advantages of the bodies of land inspected by them and as to the propriety of establishing such farm or some other system, and as to the advantages of each, cost, and other proper matters, to be laid by the governor before the legislature with such recommendation as he may see proper to make.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.
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Land Commissioner Ordinance

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. The legislature at its next regular session shall provide for the election of a land commissioner at the general election to be held in 1895 whose term of office shall be four years, and whose only compensation shall be a salary to be fixed by law. He shall have charge of the swamp and overflowed lands, the internal improvement lands, the records of the office of surveyor-general turned over by the United States to this State, the Chickasaw school lands, the sixteenth section and indemnity lands for the sixteenth section outside of the Chickasaw cession, the lands forfeited for non-payment of taxes after the time allowed for exemption shall have expired, and of all other public lands and land records in this State not otherwise provided for. The legislature shall enact such other laws as shall be necessary to fully carry this ordinance into effect; and shall have power to abolish said office when the interests of the State demand it, or may add to any of the duties assigned to such officer.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

Swamp Land Ordinance

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Whereas, Doubts have arisen as to the title of original purchasers of certain swamp and overflowed lands by reason of the entry of said lands with the land scrip of counties other than the county in which said lands were situated; and

Whereas, By act of the legislature of the State of Mississippi approved February 17, 1890, “all persons now holding swamp lands under such invalid purchase shall have the right to purchase the same for a period of two years at the uniform price of 12½ cents per acre” upon the terms required by said act; therefore

Section 1. Be it ordained that the State of Mississippi hereby waives the payment of said sum named in said act, and disclaims any interest or title in and to the said lands on account of erroneous locations thereof.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

Levee Ordinances

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. For the purpose of raising the money necessary to repair, elevate, strengthen and complete the levees along the Mississippi river, within the Mississippi Levee District, composed of the counties of Bolivar, Washington, Issaquena and Sharkey, and a part Edition: current; Page: [2136] of Warren county, the board of Mississippi levee commissioners are hereby authorized to issue lithographed or engraved bonds to the amount of five hundred thousand dollars, in such form, bearing such rate of interest and payable at such time, as it may determine, with coupons for interest attached, and to dispose of the same from time to time as may be necessary; but such bonds shall not run for a longer time than fifty years, nor bear a rate of interest exceeding six per centum per annum, payable semi-annually in the city of New York. The signatures to the said coupons may be lithographed, but all such bonds so issued shall be signed by the president of said board, countersigned by its treasurer with the corporate seal of the board attached, numbered consecutively, and registered in a book to be kept for that purpose.

Sec. 2. The corporate organization of the board of Mississippi levee commissioners, and the tax herein directed to be levied, together with the taxes heretofore levied or authorized by the legislature for levee purposes, shall be continued to the extent and according to the terms of the several laws levying or authorizing said taxes until all the bonds issued by virtue of and under the authority contained in the preceding section of this ordinance are paid off and discharged; and said taxes are pledged for the payment thereof and of the coupons of interest thereto attached, subject however to the provisions of this Constitution.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

An Ordinance to provide for representation of Pearl River county in the legislature in the event of a called session thereof

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. That in case the governor shall convene the legislature in extraordinary session before the next general election to be held under this constitution, the board of supervisors of Pearl River county shall order an election therein for a member of the house of representatives, to be held not less than ten days before the assembling of the legislature, and under the rules and regulations now prescribed by law for holding such elections; and said county shall be entitled to one representative in the lower house of the legislature in such extraordinary session, if called.

S. S. Calhoon, President.

An Ordinance assigning the county of Pearl River of the Sixth Congressional District

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. That the county of Pearl River as created by the act approved February 22, 1890, be and the same is hereby attached to and shall become a part of the Sixth Congressional District of this Edition: current; Page: [2137] State, until otherwise provided by law; and that the qualified electors of said county be, and they are hereby authorized and empowered to vote at the next ensuing election for members of Congress from the said Sixth District, at the same time and in the same manner, as other qualified electors in the other counties now attached to, and composing the Sixth District.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

An Ordinance to legalize the assessment in Pearl River county, during the year 1890, and to authorize a new assessment of lands therein during the year 1891

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. That the board of supervisors of Pearl River county shall hold a meeting at the court-house of said county on the first Monday in January, 1891, for the purpose of hearing complaints against the assessment of real estate of said county; and all persons having cause of complaint against said assessment, are required to present the same on or before said day, after being considered as above provided, and all complaints passed on, and said assessment being then approved shall be binding and conclusive.

Sec. 2. That the board of supervisors of Pearl River county is authorized, in its discretion, to have made an assessment of the lands of said county during the year 1891 in the same manner in all respects as is provided by law for a general assessment of lands; which assessment when so made, and approved by the board of supervisors, shall have the same force and effect as though made at the time fixed by law for the assessment of lands.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.

Exemption Ordinance

Be it ordained by the people of Mississippi in Convention assembled

Section 1. That all permanent factories hereafter established in this State while this section is in force, for working cotton, wool, silk, furs or metals, and all others manufacturing implements or articles of use in a finished state, shall be exempt from taxation for a period of ten years. Any factory which has been abandoned for not less than three years, and commencing operations within two years from the date of the adoption of this constitution, shall be entitled to such exemption. This section may be repealed or amended by the legislature after five years, and if not so repealed, shall remain in force until January 1st, 1900, and no longer.

S. S. Calhoon, President.
Attest:
R. E. Wilson, Secretary.
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MISSOURI

For organic acts issued before 1812 relating to the land now included within Missouri see in this work:

Treaty Ceding Louisiana, 1803 (Louisiana, p. 1359).
District of Louisiana, 1804 (Louisiana, p. 1364).
Territory of Louisiana, 1805 (Louisiana, p. 1371).

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MISSOURI—1812a

[Twelfth Congress, First Session]

An Act providing for the government of the Territory of Missouri

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Territory heretofore called Louisiana shall hereafter be called Missouri, and that the temporary government of the Territory of Missouri shall be organized and administered in the manner hereinafter described.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the executive power shall be vested in a governor, who shall reside in the said Territory; he shall hold his office during the term of three years, unless sooner removed by the President of the United States; shall be commander-in-chief of the militia of the said Territory; shall have power to appoint and commission all officers, civil and of the militia, whose appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, which shall be established by law; shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed; shall have power to grant pardons for offences against the said Territory, and reprieves for those against the United States, until the decision of the President of the United States thereon shall be made known; shall have power on extraordinary occasions to convene the general assembly, and he shall ex officio be superintendent of Indian affairs.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That there shall be a secretary, whose commission shall continue in force for four years, unless sooner revoked by the President of the United States; he shall reside in the said Territory; it shall be his duty, under the direction of the governor, to record and preserve all the proceedings and papers of the executive and all the acts of the general assembly, and to transmit authentic copies of the same every six months to the President of the United States. In case of a vacancy of the office of governor, the government of the said Territory shall be executed by the secretary.

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Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the legislative power shall be vested in a general assembly, which shall consist of the governor, a legislative council, and a house of representatives. The general assembly shall have power to make laws in all cases, both civil and criminal, for the good government of the people of the said Territory, not repugnant to or inconsistent with the Constitution and laws of the United States, and shall have power to establish inferior courts and to prescribe their jurisdiction and duties, to define the powers and duties of justices of the peace and other civil offices in the said Territory, and to regulate and fix the fees of office and to ascertain and provide for payment of the same, and for all other services rendered to the said Territory under the authority thereof. All bills having passed by a majority in the house of representatives and by a majority in the legislative council shall be referred to the governor for his assent, but no bill or legislative act whatever shall be of any force without his approbation.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the legislative council shall consist of nine members, to continue in office five years, unless sooner removed by the President of the United States; any five of them shall be a quorum. The members of the legislative council shall be nominated and appointed in the manner following: As soon as representatives shall be elected, they shall be convened by the governor as hereafter prescribed, and, when met, shall nominate eighteen persons, residents in the said Territory one year preceding their nomination, holding no office of profit under the Territory or the United States, the office of justice of the peace excepted, and each possessing in his own right two hundred acres of land therein, and return the names to the President of the United States, nine of whom the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint and commission to serve as aforesaid; and when a vacancy shall happen in the legislative council, by death or removal from office, the house of representatives shall nominate two persons qualified as aforesaid for such vacancy, and return their names to the President of the United States, one of whom he, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, shall appoint and commission for the residue of the term; and every five years, four months at least before the expiration of the term of service of the members of the legislative council, the house of representatives shall nominate eighteen persons, qualified as aforesaid, and return their names to the President of the United States, nine of whom shall be appointed and commissioned as aforesaid, to serve as members of the legislative council five years, if not sooner removed. No person shall be a member of the legislative council who hath not attained to the age of twenty-five years.

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the house of representatives shall be composed of members elected every second year by the people of the said Territory, to serve for two years. For every five hundred free white male inhabitants there shall be one representative, and so on, progressively, with the number of free white male inhabitants shall the right of representation increase, until the number of the representatives shall amount to twenty-five, after which the number and proportion of representatives shall be regulated by the general assembly. No person shall be eligible or qualified to be a representative who shall not have attained to the age of twenty-one years, Edition: current; Page: [2141] and who shall not have resided in the Territory one year next preceding the day of election, and who shall not be a freeholder within the county in which he may be elected, and no person holding any office under the United States, or any office of profit under the Territory, shall be a representative. In case of vacancy, by death, resignation, removal, or otherwise, of a representative, the governor shall issue a writ to the county, whenever a vacancy may be as aforesaid, to elect another person to serve the residue of the term. That all free white male citizens of the United States, above the age of twenty-one years, who have resided in said Territory twelve months next preceding an election, and who shall have paid a territorial or county tax, assessed at least six months previous thereto, shall be entitled to vote for representatives to the general assembly of said Territory.

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That, in order to carry the same into operation, the governor of the said Territory shall cause to be elected thirteen representatives, and for that purpose shall proceed, as circumstances may require, to lay off the parts of the said Territory to which the Indian title hath been extinguished, into convenient counties, on or before the first Monday in October next, and give notice thereof throughout the same, and shall appoint the most convenient time and place within each of the said counties for holding the elections, and shall nominate a proper officer or officers to preside at and conduct the same, and to return to him the names of the persons who shall have been elected. All subsequent elections shall be regulated by the general assembly, and the number of representatives shall be determined, and the apportionment made, in the manner hereinbefore prescribed.

Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That the representatives, elected as aforesaid, shall be convened, by the governor, in the town of Saint Louis, on the first Monday in December next, and the first general assembly shall be convened by the governor, as soon as may be convenient, at Saint Louis, after the members of the legislative council shall be appointed and commissioned. The general assembly shall meet once in each year at Saint Louis, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in December annually, unless they shall by law appoint a different day. The legislative council and house of representatives, when assembled, shall each choose a speaker and its other officers, and determine the rules of its proceedings. Each house shall sit on its own adjournments from day to day. Neither house shall, during the session, without consent of the other, adjourn for more than two days, nor to any other place than that where the two houses shall be sitting. The members of the general assembly shall, in all cases except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at their respective houses, and in going to and returning from the same, and for any speech or debate in either house they shall not be questioned in any other place.

Sec. 9. And be it further enacted, That all and every free white male person, who, on the twentieth day of December, in the year one thousand eight hundred and three, was an inhabitant of the Territory of Louisiana, and all free white male citizens of the United States who, since the said twentieth day of December, in the year one thousand eight hundred and three, emigrated, or who hereafter Edition: current; Page: [2142] may emigrate, to the said Territory, being otherwise qualified according to the provisions of this act, shall be capable to hold any office of honor, trust, or profit in the said Territory, under the United States, or under the said Territory, and to vote for members of the general assembly and a Delegate to Congress during the temporary government provided for by this act.

Sec. 10. And be it further enacted, That the judicial power shall be vested in a superior court, and in inferior courts and justices of the peace. The judges of the superior court and justices of the peace shall hold their offices for the term of four years, unless sooner removed; the superior court shall consist of three judges, who shall reside in the said Territory, any two of whom shall constitute a court; the superior court shall have jurisdiction in all criminal cases, and exclusive jurisdiction in all those that are capital; and original and appellate jurisdiction in all civil cases of the value of one hundred dollars; the said judges shall hold their courts at such times and places as shall be prescribed by the general assembly. The sessions of the superior and inferior courts shall continue until all the business depending shall be disposed of, or for such as shall be prescribed by the general assembly. The superior and inferior courts shall respectively appoint their clerks, who shall be commissioned by the governor, and shall hold their offices during the temporary government of the said Territory, unless sooner removed by the court.

Sec. 11. And be it further enacted, That all free male white persons of the age of twenty-one years, who shall have resided one year in the said Territory, and are not disqualified by any legal proceeding, shall be qualified to serve as grand or petit jurors in the courts of the said Territory; and they shall, until the general assembly thereof shall otherwise direct, be selected in such manner as the said courts shall respectively prescribe, so as to be most conducive to an impartial trial, and least burdensome to the inhabitants of the said Territory.

Sec. 12. And be it further enacted, That the governor, secretary, and judges, for the Territory of Missouri, authorized by this act, and all general officers of the militia, during the temporary government thereof, shall be appointed and commissioned by the President of the United States, by and with the advice and consent of the senate; and the governor, secretary, and judges shall respectively receive for their services the compensations established by law, to be paid quarter-yearly out of the Treasury of the United States; the governor, secretary, judges, members of the legislative council, members of the house of representatives, justices of the peace, and all other officers, civil and military, before they enter on the duties of their respective offices, shall take an oath or affirmation to support the Constitution of the United States, and for the faithful discharge of the duties of their office; the governor, before a judge of the supreme or a district court of the United States, or a judge of the said Territory; the secretary and judges, before the governor; the members of the legislative council and house of representatives, before a judge of the said Territory; and the justices of the peace and all other offices before such person as the governor shall appoint and direct.

Sec. 13. And be it further enacted, That the citizens of the said Territory entitled to vote for representatives to the general assembly Edition: current; Page: [2143] thereof, shall, at the time of electing their representatives to the said general assembly, also elect one Delegate from the said Territory to the Congress of the United States; and the Delegate so elected shall possess the same powers, shall have the same privileges and compensation for his attendance in Congress, and for going to and returning from the same, as heretofore have been granted to and provided for a Delegate from any Territory of the United States.

Sec. 14. And be it further enacted, That the people of the said Territory shall always be entitled to a proportionate representation in the general assembly; to judicial proceedings according to the common law and the laws and usages in force in the said Territory; to the benefit of the writ of habeas corpus. In all criminal cases the trial shall be by jury of good and lawful men of the vicinage. All persons shall be bailable, unless for capital offences where the proof shall be evident or the presumption great. All fines shall be moderate, and no cruel or unusual punishment shall be inflicted. No man shall be deprived of his life, liberty, or property, but by the judgment of his peers and the law of the land. If the public exigencies make it necessary for the common preservation to take the property of any person, or to demand his particular services, full compensation shall be made for the same. No ex post facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts, shall be made. No law shall be made which shall lay any person under restraint, burden, or disability, on account of his religious opinions, professions, or mode of worship, in all which he shall be free to maintain his own, and not burthened for those of another. Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall be encouraged and provided for from the public lands of the United States in the said Territory, in such manner as Congress may deem expedient.

Sec. 15. And be it further enacted, That the general assembly shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil by the United States in Congress assembled, nor with any regulation Congress may find necessary to make for securing the title in the bona-fide purchasers. No tax shall ever be imposed on lands the property of the United States. The lands of non-resident proprietors shall never be taxed higher than those of residents. The Mississippi and Missouri Rivers, and the navigable waters flowing into them, and the carrying-places between the same, shall be common highways and forever free to the people of said Territory, and to the citizens of the United States, without any tax, duty, or impost therefor.

Sec. 16. And be it further enacted, That the laws and regulations in force in the Territory of Louisiana, at the commencement of this act, and not inconsistent with the provisions thereof, shall continue in force until altered, modified, or repealed by the general assembly. And it is hereby declared that this act shall not be construed to vacate the commission of any officer in the said Territory, acting under the authority of the United States, but that every such commission shall be and continue in full force as if this act had not been made. And so much of an act entitled “An act further providing for the government of the Territory of Louisiana,” approved on the third day of March, one thousand eight hundred and five, and so much of an act entituled “An act for erecting Louisiana into two Territories and providing Edition: current; Page: [2144] for the temporary government thereof,” approved the twenty-sixth of March, one thousand eight hundred and four, as is repugnant to this act, shall, from and after the first Monday in December next, be repealed. On which first Monday in December next this act shall commence and have full force: Provided, So much of it as requires the governor of said Territory to perform certain duties, previous to the said first Monday in December next, shall be in force from the passage thereof.

TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT OF MISSOURI—1816

[Fourteenth Congress, First Session]

An Act to alter certain parts of the act providing for the government of the Territory of Missouri

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the electors of the Territory of Missouri, entitled to vote for members of the house of representatives of the Territory, at the time of electing the representatives to the general assembly, shall in each county in said Territory elect one member of the legislative council to serve for two years and no longer, qualified according to the provisions of the fifth section of the act providing for the government of the Territory of Missouri, passed June fourth, one thousand eight hundred and twelve, a majority of whom shall be a quorum, and shall possess the same powers as are granted to the legislative council by the said recited act; and in case of vacancy of a member of the legislative council, by resignation or otherwise, the governor of the Territory shall issue a writ to the county to elect another person to serve the residue of the term.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That so much of the eighth section of the said recited act as requires the general assembly of said Territory to meet once in each year be repealed, and the said general assembly shall meet once in every other year at Saint Louis, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in December, unless they shall by law appoint a different day: Provided, That the governor for the time being shall have authority by proclamation to convene the general assembly whenever he shall deem the interest of the Territory may require it.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the general assembly of the said Territory shall be, and are hereby, authorized to require the judges of the superior court of the said Territory to hold superior and circuit courts, to appoint the times and places of holding the same, and under such rules and regulations as the general assembly may in that behalf prescribe; the circuit courts shall be composed of one of the said judges, and shall have jurisdiction in all criminal cases, and exclusive original jurisdiction in all those which are capital, and original jurisdiction in all civil cases of the value of one hundred dollars, and the superior and circuit courts shall possess and exercise chancery powers as well as common-law jurisdiction in all civil cases: Provided, That there shall be an appeal in matters of law and equity, Edition: current; Page: [2145] in all cases, from the circuit courts to the superior court of the said Territory.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That such part of the said recited acts as is repugnant to, or inconsistent with, the provisions of this act, be, and the same is hereby, repealed.

ENABLING ACT FOR MISSOURI—1820

[Sixteenth Congress, First Session]

An Act to authorize the people of Missouri Territory to form a constitution and State government, and for the admission of such State into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, and to prohibit slavery in certain Territories

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the inhabitants of that portion of the Missouri Territory included within the boundaries hereinafter designated, be, and they are hereby, authorized to form for themselves a constitution and State government, and to assume such name as they shall deem proper; and the said State, when formed, shall be admitted into the Union upon an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatsoever.

Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the said State shall consist of all the territory included within the following boundaries, to wit: Beginning in the middle of the Mississippi River, on the parallel of thirty-six degrees of north latitude; thence west along that parallel of latitude to the Saint François River; thence up, and following the course of that river, in the middle of the main channel thereof, to the parallel of latitude of thirty-six degrees and thirty minutes; thence west, along the same, to a point where the said parallel is intersected by a meridian-line passing through the middle of the mouth of the Kansas River, where the same empties into the Missouri River; thence from the point aforesaid north, along the said meridian-line, to the intersection of the parallel of latitude which passes through the rapids of the river Des Moines, making the said line to correspond with the Indian boundary-line; thence east, from the point of intersection last aforesaid, along the said parallel of latitude, to the middle of the channel of the main fork of the said river Des Moines; thence down and along the middle of the main channel of the said river Des Moines to the mouth of the same, where it empties into the Mississippi River; thence due east to the middle of the main channel of Mississippi River; thence down, and following the course of the Mississippi River, in the middle of the main channel thereof, to the place of beginning: Provided, The State shall ratify the boundaries aforesaid: And provided also, That the said State shall have concurrent jurisdiction on the river Mississippi, and every other river bordering on the said State, so far as the said rivers shall form a common boundary to the said State and any other State or States, now or hereafter to be formed and bounded by the same, such rivers to be common to both; and that the river Mississippi, and the navigable rivers and waters leading into the same, shall be common highways, Edition: current; Page: [2146] and forever free, as well to the inhabitants of the said State as to other citizens of the United States, without any tax, duty, impost, or toll therefor imposed by the said State.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That all free white male citizens of the United States, who shall have arrived at the age of twenty-one years, and have resided in said Territory three months previous to the day of election, and all other persons qualified to vote for representatives to the general assembly of the said Territory, shall be qualified to be elected, and they are hereby qualified and authorized to vote and choose representatives to form a convention, who shall be apportioned amongst the several counties as follows:

  • From the county of Howard, five representatives.
  • From the county of Cooper, three representatives.
  • From the county of Montgomery, two representatives.
  • From the county of Pike, one representative.
  • From the county of Lincoln, one representative.
  • From the county of Saint Charles, three representatives.
  • From the county of Franklin, one representative.
  • From the county of Saint Louis, eight representatives.
  • From the county of Jefferson, one representative.
  • From the county of Washington, three representatives.
  • From the county of Saint Genevieve, four representatives.
  • From the county of Madison, one representative.
  • From the county of Cape Girardeau, five representatives.
  • From the county of New Madrid, two representatives.
  • From the county of Wayne, and that portion of the county of Lawrence that falls within the boundaries herein designated, one representative.

And the election for the representatives aforesaid shall be holden on the first Monday and two succeeding days of May next, throughout the several counties aforesaid in the said Territory, and shall be in every respect held and conducted in the same manner and under the same regulations as is prescribed by the laws of the said Territory regulating elections therein for members of the general assembly, except that the returns of the election in that portion of Lawrence County included in the boundaries aforesaid shall be made to the county of Wayne, as is provided in other cases under the laws of said Territory.

Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That the members of the convention thus duly elected shall be, and they are hereby, authorized to meet at the seat of government of said Territory, on the second Monday of the month of June next; and the said convention, when so assembled, shall have power and authority to adjourn to any other place in the said Territory, which to them shall seem best for the convenient transaction of their business; and which convention, when so met, shall first determine, by a majority of the whole number elected, whether it be or be not expedient at that time to form a constitution and State government for the people within the said Territory, as included within the boundaries above designated; and, if it be deemed expedient, the convention shall be, and hereby is, authorized to form a constitution and State government; or, if it be deemed more expedient, the said convention shall provide by ordinance for electing representatives to form a constitution or frame of government; which said representatives shall be chosen in such manner, and in such Edition: current; Page: [2147] proportion, as they shall designate, and shall meet at such time and place as shall be prescribed by the said ordinance; and shall then form for the people of said Territory, within the boundaries aforesaid, a constitution and State government: Provided, That the same, whenever formed, shall be republican, and not repugnant to the Constitution of the United States; and that the legislature of said State shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil by the United States, nor with any regulations Congress may find necessary for securing the title in such soil to the bona-fide purchasers; and that no tax shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States; and in no case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That, until the next general census shall be taken, the said State shall be entitled to one Representative in the House of Representatives of the United States.

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the following propositions be, and the same are hereby, offered to the convention of the said Territory of Missouri, when formed, for their free acceptance or rejection, which, if accepted by the convention, shall be obligatory upon the United States:

First. That section numbered sixteen in every township, and when such section has been sold, or otherwise disposed of, other lands, equivalent thereto and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to the State for the use of the inhabitants of such township, for the use of schools.

Second. That all salt-springs, not exceeding twelve in number, with six sections of land adjoining to each, shall be granted to the said State, for the use of said State, the same to be selected by the legislature of the said State, on or before the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty-five, and the same, when so selected, to be used under such terms, conditions, and regulations as the legislature of said State shall direct: Provided, That no salt-spring, the right whereof now is, or hereafter shall be, confirmed or adjudged to any individual or individuals, shall, by this section, be granted to said State: And provided also, That the legislature shall never sell or lease the same, at any one time, for a longer period than ten years, without the consent of Congress.

Third. That five per cent. of the net proceeds of the sale of lands lying within the said Territory, or State, and which shall be sold by Congress, from and after the first day of January next, after deducting all expenses incident to the same, shall be reserved for making public roads and canals, of which three-fifths shall be applied to those objects within the State, under the direction of the legislature thereof; and the other two-fifths in defraying, under the direction of Congress, the expenses to be incurred in making of a road or roads, canal or canals, leading to the said State.

Fourth. That four entire sections of land be, and the same are hereby, granted to the said State, for the purpose of fixing their seat of government thereon, which said sections shall, under the direction of the legislature of said State, be located, as near as may be, in one body, at any time, in such townships and ranges as the legislature aforesaid may select, on any of the public lands of the United States: Provided, That such locations shall be made prior to the public sale of the lands of the United States surrounding such location.

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Fifth. That thirty-six sections, or one entire township, which shall be designated by the President of the United States, together with the other lands heretofore reserved for that purpose, shall be reserved for the use of a seminary of learning, and vested in the legislature of said State, to be appropriated solely for the use of such seminary by the said legislature: Provided, That the five foregoing propositions herein offered are on the condition that the convention of the said State shall provide, by an ordinance, irrevocable without the consent of the United States, that every and each tract of land sold by the United States, from and after the first day of January next, shall remain exempt from any tax laid by order or under the authority of the State, whether for State, county, or township, or any other purpose whatever, for the term of five years from and after the day of sale: And further, That the bounty-lands granted, or hereafter to be granted, for military services during the late war, shall, while they continue to be held by the patentees, or their heirs, remain exempt as aforesaid from taxation for the term of three years from and after the date of the patents respectively.

Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That in case a constitution and State government shall be formed for the people of the said Territory of Missouri, the said convention or representatives, as soon thereafter as may be, shall cause a true and attested copy of such constitution, or frame of State government, as shall be formed or provided, to be transmitted to Congress.

Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That in all that territory ceded by France to the United States, under the name of Louisiana, which lies north of thirty-six degrees and thirty minutes north latitude, not included within the limits of the State contemplated by this act, slavery and involuntary servitude, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the parties shall have been duly convicted, shall be, and is hereby, forever prohibited: Provided always, That any person escaping into the same from whom labor or service is lawfully claimed in any State or Territory of the United States, such fugitive may be lawfully reclaimed, and conveyed to the person claiming his or her labor or services as aforesaid.

RESOLUTION FOR THE ADMISSION OF MISSOURI—1821

[Sixteenth Congress, Second Session]

Resolution providing for the admission of the state of Missouri into the Union, on a certain condition

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, That Missouri shall be admitted into this union on an equal footing-with the original states, in all respects whatever, upon the fundamental condition, that the fourth clause of the twenty-sixth section of the third article of the constitution submitted on the part of said state to Congress, shall never be construed to authorize the passage of any law, and that no law shall be passed in conformity thereto, by which any citizen, of either of the states in this Union, shall be excluded from the enjoyment of any of the privileges and immunities to which such citizen Edition: current; Page: [2149] is entitled under the constitution of the United States: Provided, That the legislature of the said state, by a solemn public act, shall declare the assent of the said state to the said fundamental condition, and shall transmit to the President of the United States, on or before the fourth Monday in November next, an authentic copy of the said act; upon the receipt whereof, the President, by proclamation, shall announce the fact; whereupon, and without any further proceeding on the part of Congress, the admission of the said state into this Union shall be considered as complete.

PROCLAMATION ADMITTING MISSOURI—1821a

By the President of the United States

A PROCLAMATION

Whereas the Congress of the United States, by a joint resolution of the 2d day of March last, entitled “Resolution providing for the admission of the State of Missouri into the Union on a certain condition,” did determine and declare that Missouri should be admitted into this Union on an equal footing with the original States in all respects whatever upon the fundamental condition that the fourth clause of the twenty-sixth section of the third article of the constitution submitted on the part of said State to Congress shall never be construed to authorize the passage of any law, and that no law shall be passed in conformity thereto, by which any citizen of either of the States of this Union shall be excluded from the enjoyment of any of the privileges and immunities to which such citizen is entitled under the Constitution of the United States: Provided, That the Legislature of said State, by a solemn public act shall declare the assent of the said State to the said fundamental condition, and shall transmit to the President of the United States on or before the first Monday in November next an authentic copy of said act, upon the receipt whereof the President, by proclamation, shall announce the fact, whereupon, and without any further proceeding on the part of Congress, the admission of the said State into this Union shall be considered as complete:” and

Whereas by solemn public act of the assembly of said State of Missouri, passed on the 26th of June, in the present year, entitled “A solemn public act declaring the assent of this State to the fundamental condition contained in a resolution passed by the Congress of the United States providing for the admission of the State of Missouri into the Union, on a certain condition,” an authentic copy whereof has been communicated to me, it is solemnly and publicly enacted and declared that that State has assented, and does assent, that the fourth clause of the twenty-sixth section of the third article of the constitution of said State “shall never be construed to authorize the passage of any law, and that no law shall be passed in conformity thereto, by which any citizen of either of the United States shall be excluded from the enjoyment of any of the privileges Edition: current; Page: [2150] and immunities to which such citizens are entitled under the Constitution of the United States:”

Now, therefore, I, James Monroe, President of the United States, in pursuance of the resolution of Congress aforesaid, have issued this my proclamation announcing the fact that the said State of Missouri has assented to the fundamental condition required by the resolution of Congress aforesaid, whereupon the admission of the said State of Missouri into this Union is declared to be complete.

In testimony whereof I have caused the seal of the United States of America to be affixed to these presents, and signed the same with my hand.

Done at the city of Washington the 10th of August, ad, 1821, (seal) and of the Independence of the said United States of America the forty-sixth.

James Monroe.
By the President:
John Quincy Adams,
Secretary of State.

CONSTITUTION OF MISSOURI—1820*a

We, the people of Missouri, inhabiting the limits hereinafter designated, by our representatives in convention assembled at Saint Louis, on Monday, the 12th day of June, 1820, do mutually agree to form and establish a free and independent republic, by the name of the “State of Missouri,” and for the government thereof do ordain and establish this constitution:

Article I: OF BOUNDARIES

We do declare, establish, ratify, and confirm the following as the permanent boundaries of said State, that is to say: Beginning in the middle of the Mississippi River, on the parallel of thirty-six degrees of north latitude; thence west along the said parallel of latitude to Saint François River; thence up and following the course of that river, in the middle of the main channel thereof, to the parallel of latitude of thirty-six degrees and thirty minutes; thence west along the same to a point where the said parallel is intersected by a meridian-line passing through the middle of the mouth of the Kansas River, where the same empties into the Missouri River; thence from the point aforesaid north, along the said meridian-line, to the intersection of the parallel of latitude which passes through the rapids of the river Des Moines, making the said line correspond with the Indian boundary-line; thence east from the point of intersection last aforesaid, along the said parallel of latitude, to the middle of the channel of the main fork of the said river Des Moines; thence down Edition: current; Page: [2151] and along the middle of the main channel of the said river Des Moines to the mouth of the same, where it empties into the Mississippi River; thence due east to the middle of the main channel of the Mississippi River; thence down and following the course of the Mississippi River, in the middle of the main channel thereof, to the place of beginning.

Article II: OF THE DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS

The powers of government shall be divided into three distinct departments, each of which shall be confided to a separate magistracy; and no person charged with the exercise of powers properly belonging to one of those departments shall exercise any power properly belonging to either of the others, except in the instances hereinafter expressly directed or permitted.

Article III: OF THE LEGISLATIVE POWER

Section 1. The legislative power shall be vested in a general assembly, which shall consist of a senate and of a house of representatives.

Sec. 2. The house of representatives shall consist of members to be chosen every second year, by the qualified electors of the several counties. Each county shall have at least one representative; but the whole number of representatives shall never exceed one hundred.

Sec. 3. No person shall be a member of the house of representatives who shall not have attained the age of twenty-four years; who shall not be a free white male citizen of the United States; who shall not have been an inhabitant of this State two years, and of the county which he represents one year next before his election, if such county shall have been so long established; but if not, then of the county or counties from which the same shall have been taken; and who shall not, moreover, have paid a State or county tax.

Sec. 4. The general assembly at their first session, and in the years one thousand eight hundred and twenty-two and one thousand eight hundred and twenty-four, respectively, and every fourth year thereafter, shall cause an enumeration of the inhabitants of this State to be made; and at the first session after such enumeration shall apportion the number of representatives among the several counties, according to the number of free white male inhabitants therein.

Sec. 5. The senators shall be chosen by the qualified electors for the term of four years. No person shall be a senator who shall not have attained to the age of thirty years; who shall not be a free white male citizen of the United States; who shall not have been an inhabitant of this State four years, and of the district which he may be chosen to represent one year next before his election, if such district shall have been so long established; but if not, then of the district or districts from which the same shall have been taken; and who shall not, moreover, have paid a State or county tax.

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Sec. 6. The senate shall consist of not less than fourteen nor more than thirty-three members; for the election of whom the State shall be divided into convenient districts, which may be altered from time to time, and new districts established, as public convenience may require, and the senators shall be apportioned among the several districts according to the number of free white male inhabitants in each: Provided, That when a senatorial district shall be composed of two or more counties, the counties of which such district consists shall not be entirely separated by any county belonging to another district; and no county shall be divided in forming a district.

Sec. 7. At the first session of the general assembly, the senators shall be divided by lot, as equally as may be, into two classes. The seats of the first class shall be vacated at the end of the second year, and the seats of the second class at the end of the fourth year; so that one-half of the senators shall be chosen every second year.

Sec. 8. After the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and twenty-two, all general elections shall commence on the first Monday in August, and shall be held biennially; and the electors, in all cases, except of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during their continuance at elections, and in going to and returning from the same.

Sec. 9. The governor shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies as may occur in either house of the general assembly.

Sec. 10. Every free white male citizen of the United States, who shall have attained the age of twenty-one years, and who shall have resided in this State one year before an election, the last three months whereof shall have been in the county or district in which he offers to vote, shall be deemed a qualified elector of all elective offices: Provided, That no soldier, seaman, or mariner in the Regular Army or Navy of the United States shall be entitled to vote at any election in this State.

Sec. 11. No judge of any court of law or equity, secretary of state, attorney-general, State auditor, State or county treasurer, register, or recorder, clerk of any court of record, sheriff, coroner, member of Congress, nor other person holding any lucrative office under the United States or this State, militia officers, justices of the peace, and postmasters excepted, shall be eligible to either house of the general assembly.

Sec. 12. No person who now is or hereafter may be a collector or holder of public money, nor any assistant or deputy of such collector or holder of public money, shall be eligible to either house of the general assembly, nor to any office of profit or trust until he shall have accounted for and paid all sums for which he may be accountable.

Sec. 13. No person while he continues to exercise the functions of a bishop, priest, clergyman, or teacher of any religious persuasion, denomination, society, or sect whatsoever, shall be eligible to either house of the general assembly; nor shall he be appointed to any office of profit within the State, the office of justice of the peace excepted.

Sec. 14. The general assembly shall have power to exclude from every office of honor, trust, or profit, within the State, and from the right of suffrage, all persons convicted of bribery, perjury, or other infamous crime.

Sec. 15. Every person who shall be convicted of having, directly or indirectly, given or offered any bribe to procure his election or Edition: current; Page: [2153] appointment, shall be disqualified for any office of honor, trust, or profit under this State; and any person who shall give or offer any bribe to procure the election or appointment of any person, shall, on conviction thereof, be disqualified for an elector, or for any office of honor, trust, or profit under this State, for ten years after such conviction.

Sec. 16. No senator or representative shall, during the term for which he shall have been elected, be appointed to any civil office under this State which shall have been created, or the emoluments of which shall have been increased, during his continuance in office, except to such offices as shall be filled by elections of the people.

Sec. 17. Each house shall appoint its own officers, and shall judge of the qualifications, elections, and returns of its own members. A majority of each house shall constitute a quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may compel the attendance of absent members in such manner, and under such penalties, as each house may provide.

Sec. 18. Each house may determine the rules of its proceedings; punish its members for disorderly behavior; and, with the concurrence of two-thirds of all the members elected, expel a member; but no member shall be expelled a second time for the same cause. They shall each, from time to time, publish a journal of their proceedings, except such parts as may, in their opinion, require secrecy; and the yeas and nays on any question shall be entered on the journal, at the desire of any two members.

Sec. 19. The doors of each house, and of committee of the whole, shall be kept open, except in cases which may require secrecy; and each house may punish, by fine or imprisonment, any person, not a member, who shall be guilty of disrespect to the house, by any disorderly or contemptuous behavior in their presence, during their session: Provided, That such fine shall not exceed three hundred dollars, and such imprisonment shall not exceed forty-eight hours for one offence.

Sec. 20. Neither house shall, without the consent of the other, adjourn for more than two days at any one time, nor to any other place than to that in which the two houses may be sitting.

Sec. 21. Bills may originate in either house, and may be altered, amended, or rejected by the other; and every bill shall be read on three different days in each house, unless two-thirds of the house where the same is depending shall dispense with this rule; and every bill, having passed both houses, shall be signed by the speaker of the house of representatives and by the president of the senate.

Sec. 22. When any officer, civil or military, shall be appointed by the joint or concurrent vote of both houses, or by the separate vote of either house of the general assembly, the votes shall be publicly given, viva voce, and entered on the journals. The whole list of members shall be called, and the names of absentees shall be noted and published with the journal.

Sec. 23. Senators and representatives shall, in all cases, except of treason, felony, or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during the session of the general assembly, and for fifteen days next before the commencement and after the termination of each session; and for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other place.

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Sec. 24. The members of the general assembly shall severally receive from the public treasury a compensation for their services, which may, from time to time, be increased or diminished by law; but no alteration, increasing or tending to increase the compensation of members, shall take effect during the session at which such alteration shall be made.

Sec. 25. The general assembly shall direct by law in what manner, and in what courts, suits may be brought against the State.

Sec. 26. The general assembly shall not have power to pass laws—

1. For the emancipation of slaves without the consent of their owners; or without paying them, before such emancipation, a full equivalent for such slaves so emancipated; and,

2. To prevent bona-fide immigrants to this State, or actual settlers therein, from bringing from any of the United States, or from any of their Territories, such persons as may there be deemed to be slaves, so long as any persons of the same description are allowed to be held as slaves by the laws of this State.

They shall have power to pass laws—

1. To prohibit the introduction into this State of any slaves who may have committed any high crime in any other State or Territory;

2. To prohibit the introduction of any slave for the purpose of speculation, or as an article of trade or merchandise;

3. To prohibit the introduction of any slave, or the offspring of any slave, who heretofore may have been, or who hereafter may be, imported from any foreign country into the United States, or any Territory thereof, in contravention of any existing statute of the United States; and,

4. To permit the owners of slaves to emancipate them, saving the right of creditors, where the person so emancipating will give security that the slave so emancipated shall not become a public charge.

It shall be their duty, as soon as may be, to pass such laws as may be necessary—

1. To prevent free negroes end mulattoes from coming to and settling in this State, under any pretext whatsoever; and,

2. To oblige the owners of slaves to treat them with humanity, and to abstain from all injuries to them extending to life or limb.

Sec. 27. In prosecutions for crimes, slaves shall not be deprived of an impartial trial by jury and a slave convicted of a capital offence shall suffer the same degree of punishment, and no other, that would be inflicted on a free white person for a like offence; and courts of justice, before whom slaves shall be tried, shall assign them counsel for their defence.

Sec. 28. Any person who shall maliciously deprive of life or dismember a slave, shall suffer such punishment as would be inflicted for the like offence if it were committed on a free white person.

Sec. 29. The governor, lieutenant-governor, secretary of state, auditor, treasurer, attorney-general, and all judges of the courts of law and equity, shall be liable to impeachment for any misdemeanor in office; but judgment in such cases shall not extend further than removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honor, trust, or profit under this State. The party impeached, whether convicted or acquitted, shall, nevertheless, be liable to be indicted, tried, and punished according to law.

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Sec. 30. The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeachment. All impeachments shall be tried by the senate; and, when sitting for that purpose, the senators shall be on oath or affirmation to do justice according to law and evidence. When the governor shall be tried, the presiding judge of the supreme court shall preside; and no person shall be convicted without the concurrence of two-thirds of the senators present.

Sec. 31. A State treasurer shall be biennially appointed by joint vote of the two houses of the general assembly, who shall keep his office at the seat of government. No money shall be drawn from the treasury but in consequence of appropriations made by law; and an accurate account of the receipts and expenditures of the public money shall be annually published.

Sec. 32. The appointment of all officers, not otherwise directed by this constitution, shall be made in such manner as may be prescribed by law; and all officers, both civil and military, under the authority of this State, shall, before entering on the duties of their respective offices, take an oath or affirmation to support the Constitution of the United States, and of this State, and to demean themselves faithfully in office.

Sec. 33. The general assembly shall meet on the third Monday in September next; on the first Monday in November, eighteen hundred and twenty-one; on the first Monday in November, eighteen hundred and twenty-two, and thereafter the general assembly shall meet once in every two years, and such meeting shall be on the first Monday in November, unless a different day shall be appointed by law.

Sec. 34. No county now established by law shall ever be reduced, by the establishment of new counties, to less than twenty miles square; nor shall any county hereafter be established which shall contain less than four hundred square miles.

Sec. 35. Within five years after the adoption of this constitution, all the statute laws of a general nature, both civil and criminal, shall be revised, digested, and promulgated, in such manner as the general assembly shall direct, and a like revision, digest, and promulgation shall be made at the expiration of every subsequent period of ten years.

Sec. 36. The style of the laws of this State shall be, “Be it enacted by the general assembly of the State of Missouri.

Article IV: OF THE EXECUTIVE POWER

Section 1. The supreme executive power shall be vested in a chief magistrate, who shall be styled “The governor of the State of Missouri.”

Sec. 2. The governor shall be at least thirty-five years of age, and a natural-born citizen of the United States, or a citizen at the adoption of the Constitution of the United States, or an inhabitant of that part of Louisiana now included in the State of Missouri at the time of the cession thereof from France to the United States, and shall have been a resident of the same at least four years next before his election.

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Sec. 3. The governor shall hold his office for four years, and until a successor be duly appointed and qualified. He shall be elected in the manner following: At the time and place of voting for members of the house of representatives, the qualified electors shall vote for a governor; and when two or more persons have an equal number of votes, and a higher number than any person, the election shall be decided between them by a joint vote of both houses of the general assembly, at their next session.

Sec. 4. The governor shall be ineligible for the next four years after the expiration of his term of service.

Sec. 5. The governor shall be commander-in-chief of the militia and navy of the State, except when they shall be called into the service of the United States; but he need not command in person, unless advised so to do by a resolution of the general assembly.

Sec. 6. The governor shall have power to remit fines and forfeitures; and, except in cases of impeachment, to grant reprieves and pardons.

Sec. 7. The governor shall, from time to time, give to the general assembly information relative to the state of the government, and shall recommend to their consideration such measures as he shall deem necessary and expedient. On extraordinary occasions he may convene the general assembly by proclamation, and shall state to them the purposes for which they are convened.

Sec. 8. The governor shall take care that the laws be distributed and faithfully executed; and he shall be a conservator of the peace throughout the State.

Sec. 9. When any office shall become vacant, the governor shall appoint a person to fill such vacancy, who shall continue in office until a successor be duly appointed and qualified according to law.

Sec. 10. Every bill which shall have been passed by both houses of the general assembly shall, before it becomes a law, be presented to the governor for his approbation. If he approve, he shall sign it; if not, he shall return it, with his objections, to the house in which it shall have originated, and the house shall cause the objections to be entered at large on its journals, and shall proceed to reconsider the bill. If, after such reconsideration, a majority of all the members elected to that house shall agree to pass the same, it shall be sent, together with the objections, to the other house, by which it shall be in like manner reconsidered, and if approved by a majority of all the members elected to that house, it shall become a law. In all such cases the votes of both houses shall be taken by yeas and nays; the names of the members voting for and against the bill shall be entered on the journal of each house respectively. If any bill shall not be returned by the governor within ten days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the same shall become a law, in like manner as if the governor had signed it; unless the general assembly, by its adjournment, shall prevent its return, in which case it shall not become a law.

Sec. 11. Every resolution to which the concurrence of the senate and house of representatives may be necessary, except on cases of adjournment, shall be presented to the governor, and before the same shall take effect shall be proceeded upon in the same manner as in the case of a bill.

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Sec. 12. There shall be an auditor of public accounts, whom the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint. He shall continue in office four years, and shall perform such duties as may be prescribed by law. His office shall be kept at the seat of government.

Sec. 13. The governor shall, at stated times, receive for his services an adequate salary, to be fixed by law, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during his continuance in office, and which shall never be less than two thousand dollars annually.

Sec. 14. There shall be a lieutenant-governor, who shall be elected at the same time, in the same manner, for the same term, and shall possess the same qualifications as the governor. The electors shall distinguish for whom they vote as governor and for whom as lieutenant-governor.

Sec. 15. The lieutenant-governor shall, by virtue of his office, be president of the senate. In committee of the whole, he may debate on all questions; and, when there is an equal division, he shall give the casting vote in senate, and also in joint votes of both houses.

Sec. 16. When the office of governor shall become vacant, by death, resignation, absence from the State, removal from office, refusal to qualify, impeachment, or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor, or, in case of like disability on his part, the president of the senate pro tempore, or, if there be no president of the senate pro tempore, the speaker of the house of representatives shall possess all the powers and discharge all the duties of governor, and shall receive for his services the like compensation, until such vancancy be filled, or the governor so absent or impeached shall return or be acquitted.

Sec. 17. Whenever the office of governor shall become vacant, by death, resignation, removal from office, or otherwise, the lieutenant-governor, or other person exercising the powers of governor for the time being, shall, as soon as may be, cause an election to be held to fill such vacancy, giving three months’ previous notice thereof; and the person elected shall not thereby be rendered ineligible to the office of governor for the next succeeding term. Nevertheless, if such vacancy shall happen within eighteen months of the end of the term for which the late governor shall have been elected, the same shall not be filled.

Sec. 18. The lieutenant-governor, or president of the senate pro tempore, while presiding in the senate, shall receive the same compensation as shall be allowed to the speaker of the house of representatives.

Sec. 19. The returns of all elections of governor and lieutenant-governor shall be made to the secretary of state, in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 20. Contested elections of governor and lieutenant-governor shall be decided by joint vote of both houses of the general assembly, in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 21. There shall be a secretary of state, whom the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, shall appoint. He shall hold his office four years, unless sooner removed on impeachment. He shall keep a register of all the official acts and proceedings of the governor, and, when necessary, shall attest them; and he shall lay the same, together with all papers relative thereto, before either Edition: current; Page: [2158] house of the general assembly, whenever required so to do; and shall perform such other duties as may be enjoined on him by law.

Sec. 22. The secretary of state shall, as soon as may be, procure a seal of state, with such emblems and devices as shall be directed by law, which shall not be subject to change. It shall be called “The Great Seal of the State of Missouri;” shall be kept by the secretary of state; and all official acts of the governor, his approbation of the laws excepted, shall be thereby authenticated.

Sec. 23. There shall be appointed in each county a sheriff and a coroner, who, until the general assembly shall otherwise provide, shall be elected by the qualified electors, at the time and place of electing representatives. They shall serve for two years, and until a successor be duly appointed and qualified, unless sooner removed for misdemeanor in office, and shall be ineligible four years in any period of eight years. The sheriff and coroner shall each give security for the faithful discharge of the duties of his office in such manner as shall be prescribed by law. Whenever a county shall be hereafter established, the governor shall appoint a sheriff and coroner therein, who shall each continue in office until the next succeeding general election, and until a successor shall be duly qualified.

Sec. 24. When vacancies happen in the office of sheriff or coroner, they shall be filled by appointment of the governor; and the persons so appointed shall continue in office until successors shall be duly qualified, and shall not be thereby rendered ineligible for the next succeeding term.

Sec. 25. In all elections of sheriff and coroner, when two or more persons have an equal number of votes, and a higher number than any other person, the circuit courts of the counties respectively shall give the casting vote; and all contested elections for the said offices shall be decided by the circuit courts respectively, in such manner as the general assembly may by law prescribe.

Article V: OF THE JUDICIAL POWER

Section 1. The judicial power, as to matters of law and equity, shall be vested in a supreme court, in a chancellor, in circuit courts, and in such inferior tribunals as the general assembly may from time to time ordain and establish.

Sec. 2. The supreme court, except in cases otherwise directed by this constitution, shall have appellate jurisdiction only, which shall be coextensive with the State, under the restrictions and limitations in this constitution provided.

Sec. 3. The supreme court shall have a general superintending control over all inferior courts of law. It shall have power to issue writs of habeas corpus, mandamus, quo warranto, certiorari, and other original remedial writs, and to hear and determine the same.

Sec. 4. The supreme court shall consist of three judges, any two of whom shall be a quorum; and the said judges shall be conservators of the peace throughout the State.

Sec. 5. The State shall be divided into convenient districts, not to exceed four; in each of which the supreme court shall hold two sessions annually, at such place as the general assembly shall appoint; Edition: current; Page: [2159] and, when sitting in either district, it shall exercise jurisdiction over causes originating in that district only: Provided, however, That the general assembly may, at any time hereafter, direct by law that the said court shall be held at one place only.

Sec. 6. The circuit court shall have jurisdiction over all criminal cases which shall not be otherwise provided for by law; and exclusive original jurisdiction in all civil cases which shall not be cognizable before justices of the peace, until otherwise directed by the general assembly. It shall hold its terms in such place in each county as may be by law directed.

Sec. 7. The State shall be divided into convenient circuits, for each of which a judge shall be appointed, who, after his appointment, shall reside, and be a conservator of the peace, within the circuit for which he shall be appointed.

Sec. 8. The circuit court shall exercise a superintending control over all such inferior tribunals as the general assembly may establish, and over justices of the peace in each county in their respective circuits.

Sec. 9. The jurisdiction of the court of chancery shall be coextensive with the State, and the times and places of holding its sessions shall be regulated in the same manner as those of the supreme court.

Sec. 10. The court of chancery shall have original and appellate jurisdiction in all matters of equity, and a general control over executors, administrators, guardians, and minors, subject to appeal, in all cases, to the supreme court, under such limitations as the general assembly may by law provide.

Sec. 11. Until the general assembly shall deem it expedient to establish inferior courts of chancery, the circuit courts shall have jurisdiction in matters of equity, subject to appeal to the court of chancery, in such manner and under such restrictions as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 12. Inferior tribunals shall be established in each county for the transaction of all county business, for appointing guardians, for granting letters-testamentary and of administration, and for settling the accounts of executors, administrators, and guardians.

Sec. 13. The governor shall nominate and, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, appoint the judges of the superior court, the judges of the circuit courts, and the chancellor, each of whom shall hold his office during good behavior, and shall receive for his services a compensation, which shall not be diminished during his continuance in office, and which shall not be less than two thousand dollars annually.

Sec. 14. No person shall be appointed a judge of the supreme court, nor of a circuit court, nor chancellor, before he shall have attained to the age of thirty years, nor shall any person continue to exercise the duties of any of said offices after he shall have attained to the age of sixty-five years.

Sec. 15. The courts respectively shall appoint their clerks, who shall hold their offices during good behavior. For any misdemeanor in office they shall be liable to be tried and removed by the supreme court, in such manner as the general assembly shall by law provide.

Sec. 16. Any judge of the supreme court, or of the circuit court, or the chancellor, may be removed from office on the address of two-thirds of each house of the general assembly to the governor for that Edition: current; Page: [2160] purpose, but each house shall state, on its respective journal the cause for which it shall wish the removal of such judge or chancellor, and give him notice thereof, and he shall have the right to be heard in his defence in such manner as the general assembly shall by law direct; but no judge or chancellor shall be removed in this manner for any cause for which he might have been impeached.

Sec. 17. In each county there shall be appointed as many justices of the peace as the public good may be thought to require. Their powers and duties and their duration in office shall be regulated by law.

Sec. 18. An attorney-general shall be appointed by the governor, by and with the advice and consent of the senate. He shall remain in office four years, and shall perform such duties as shall be required of him by law.

Sec. 19. All writs and process shall run and all prosecutions shall be conducted in the name of the “State of Missouri;” all writs shall be tested by the clerk of the court from which they shall be issued, and all indictments shall conclude, “against the peace and dignity of the State.

Article VI: OF EDUCATION

Section 1. Schools and the means of education shall forever be enouraged in this State; and the general assembly shall take measures to preserve from waste or damage such lands as have been, or hereafter may be, granted by the United States for the use of schools within each township in this State, and shall apply the funds which may arise from such lands in strict conformity to the object of the grant. One school or more shall be established in each township as soon as practicable and necessary, where the poor shall be taught gratis.

Sec. 2. The general assembly shall take measures for the improvement of such lands as have been, or hereafter may be, granted by the United States to this State for the support of a seminary of learning, and the funds accruing from such lands, by rent or lease, or in any other manner, or which may be obtained from any other source, for the purposes aforesaid, shall be and remain a permanent fund to support a university for the promotion of literature and of the arts and sciences, and it shall be the duty of the general assembly, as soon as may be, to provide effectual means for the improvement of such lands, and for the improvement and permanent security of the funds and endowments of such institution.

Article VII: OF INTERNAL IMPROVEMENT

Internal improvement shall forever be encouraged by the government of this State, and it shall be the duty of the general assembly, as soon as may be, to make provision by law for ascertaining the most proper objects of improvement, in relation both to roads and navigable waters; and it shall also be their duty to provide by law for a systematic and economical application of the funds appropriated to those objects.

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Article VIII: OF BANKS

The general assembly may incorporate one banking company, and no more, to be in operation at the same time.

The bank to be incorporated may have any number of branches not to exceed five, to be established by law, and not more than one branch shall be established at any one session of the general assembly. The capital stock of the bank to be incorporated shall never exceed five millions of dollars, at least one-half of which shall be reserved for the use of the State.

Article IX: OF THE MILITIA

Section 1. Field-officers and company-officers shall be elected by the persons subject to militia duty within their respective commands. Brigadiers-general shall be elected by the field-officers of their respective brigades, and majors-general by the brigadiers and field-officers of their respective divisions, until otherwise directed by law.

Sec. 2. General and field officers shall appoint their officers of the staff.

Sec. 3. The governor shall appoint an adjutant-general, and all other militia officers whose appointments are not otherwise provided for in this constitution.

Article X: OF MISCELLANEOUS PROVISIONS

Section 1. The general assembly of this State shall never interfere with the primary disposal of the soil of the United States, nor with any regulation Congress may find necessary for securing the title in such soil to the bona fide purchasers. No tax shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States, nor shall lands belonging to persons residing out of the limits of this State ever be taxed higher than the lands belonging to persons residing within this State.

Sec. 2. The State shall have concurrent jurisdiction on the river Mississippi, and on every other river bordering on the said State, so far as the said river shall form a common boundary to the said State and any other State or States, now or hereafter to be formed, and bounded by the same; and the said river Mississippi, and the navigable rivers and waters leading into the same, whether bordering on or within this State, shall be common highways, and forever free to the citizens of this State and of the United States, without any tax, duty, impost, or toll therefor imposed by the State.

Article XI: OF THE PERMANENT SEAT OF GOVERNMENT

Section 1. The general assembly, at their first session, shall appoint five commissioners for the purpose of selecting a place for the permanent seat of government, whose duty it shall be to select four sections Edition: current; Page: [2162] of the land of the United States which shall not have been exposed to public sale.

Sec. 2. If the commissioners believe the four sections of land, so by them to be selected, be not a suitable and proper situation for the permanent seat of government, they shall select such other place as they may deem most proper for that purpose, and report the same to the general assembly at the time of making their report provided for in the first section of this article: Provided, That no place shall be selected which is not situated on the bank of the Missouri River, and within forty miles of the mouth of the river Osage.

Sec. 3. If the general assembly determine that the four sections of land which may be selected by authority of the first section of this article be a suitable and proper place for the permanent seat of government, the said commissioners shall lay out a town thereon, under the direction of the general assembly; but if the general assembly deem it most expedient to fix the permanent seat of government at the place to be selected by authority of the second section of this article, they shall so determine, and in that event shall authorize the said commissioners to purchase any quantity of land, not exceeding six hundred and forty acres, which may be necessary for the purpose aforesaid; and the place so selected shall be the permanent seat of government of this State from and after the first day of October, one thousand eight hundred and twenty-six.

Sec. 4. The general assembly, in selecting the above-mentioned commissioners, shall choose one from each extreme part of the State, and one from the centre, and it shall require the concurrence of at least three of the commissioners to decide upon any part of the duties assigned them.

Article XII: MODE OF AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION

The general assembly may at any time propose such amendments to this constitution as two-thirds of each house shall deem expedient, which shall be published in all the newspapers published in this State three several times, at least twelve months before the next general election; and if, at the first session of the general assembly after such general election, two-thirds of each house shall, by yeas and nays, ratify such proposed amendments, they shall be valid, to all intents and purposes, as parts of this constitution: Provided, That such proposed amendments shall be read on three several days, in each house, as well when the same are proposed as when they are finally ratified.

Article XIII: DECLARATION OF RIGHTS

That the general, great, and essential principles of liberty and free government may be recognized and established, we declare—

aSection 1. That all political power is vested in, and derived from, the people.

Sec. 2. That the people of this State have the inherent, sole, and exclusive right of regulating the internal government and police Edition: current; Page: [2163] thereof, and of altering and abolishing their constitution and form of government whenever it may be necessary to their safety and happiness.

Sec. 3. That the people have the right peaceably to assemble for their common good, and to apply to those vested with the powers of government for redress of grievances by petition or remonstrance; and that their right to bear arms in defence of themselves and of the State cannot be questioned.

Sec. 4. That all men have a natural and indefeasible right to worship Almighty God according to the dictates of their own consciences; that no man can be compelled to erect, support, or attend any place of worship, or to maintain any minister of the gospel or teacher of religion; that no human authority can control or interfere with the rights of conscience; that no person can ever be hurt, molested, or restrained in his religious profession or sentiments, if he do not disturb others in their religious worship.

Sec. 5. That no person, on account of his religious opinions, can be rendered ineligible to any office of trust or profit under this State; that no preference can ever be given by law to any sect or mode of worship; and that no religious corporation can ever be established in this State.

Sec. 6. That all elections shall be free and equal.

Sec. 7. That courts of justice ought to be open to every person, and certain remedy afforded for every injury to person, property, or character; and that right and justice ought to be administered without sale, denial, or delay; and that no private property ought to be taken or applied to public use without just compensation.

Sec. 8. That the right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate.

Sec. 9. That in all criminal prosecutions, the accused has the right to be heard by himself and his counsel; to demand the nature and cause of accusation; to have compulsory process for witnesses in his favor; to meet the witnesses against him face to face; and, in prosecutions on presentment or indictment, to a speedy trial, by an impartial jury of the vicinage; that the accused cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property but by the judgment of his peers, or the law of the land.

Sec. 10. That no person, after having been once acquitted by a jury, can, for the same offence, be again put in jeopardy of life or limb; but if in any criminal prosecution the jury be divided in opinion at the end of the term, the court before which the trial shall be had may, in its discretion, discharge the jury, and commit or bail the accused for trial at the next term of such court.

Sec. 11. That all persons shall be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for capital offences, when the proof is evident or the presumption great; and the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus can not be suspended, unless when, in cases of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it.

Sec. 12. That excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.

Sec. 13. That the people ought to be secure in their persons, papers, houses, and effects from unreasonable searches and seizures; and no warrant to search any place, or to seize any person or thing, can issue without describing the place to be searched, or the person or thing to be seized, as nearly as may be, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation.

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Sec. 14. That no person can, for an indictable offence, be proceeded against criminally, by information, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia when in actual service, in time of war or public danger, or by leave of the court, for oppression or misdemeanor in office.

Sec. 15. That treason against the State can consist only in levying war against it, or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort; that no person can be convicted of treason unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on his own confession in open court; that no person can be attainted of treason or felony by the general assembly; that no conviction can work corruption of blood, or forfeiture of estate; that the estates of such persons as may destroy their own lives shall descend or vest as in cases of natural death; and when any person shall be killed by casualty, there ought to be no forfeiture by reason thereof.

Sec. 16. That the free communication of thoughts and opinions is one of the invaluable rights of man, and that every person may freely speak, write, and print on any subject, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty; that in all prosecutions for libels the truth thereof may be given in evidence, and the jury may determine the law and the facts, under the direction of the court.

Sec. 17. That no ex post facto law, nor law impairing the obligation of contracts, or retrospective in its operations, can be passed; nor can the person of a debtor be imprisoned for debt after he shall have surrendered his property for the benefit of his creditors in such manner as may be prescribed by law.

Sec. 18. That no person who is religiously scrupulous of bearing arms can be compelled to do so, but may be compelled to pay an equivalent for military service, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law; and that no priest, preacher of the gospel, or teacher of any religious persuasion or sect, regularly ordained as such, be subject to militia duty, or compelled to bear arms.

Sec. 19. That all property, subject to taxation in this State, shall be taxed in proportion to its value.

Sec. 20. That no title of nobility, hereditary emolument, privilege, or distinction shall be granted nor any office created, the duration of which shall be longer than the good behavior of the officer appointed to fill the same.

Sec. 21. That emigration from this State can not be prohibited.

Sec. 22. That the military is, and in all cases and at all times shall be, in strict subordination to the civil power; that no soldier can, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner nor in time of war but in such manner as may be prescribed by law; nor can any appropriation for the support of an army be made for a longer period than two years.

Schedule

Section 1. That no inconvenience may arise from the change of government, we declare, that all writs, actions, prosecutions, judgments, claims, and contracts of individuals and of bodies-corporate shall continue as if no change had taken place; and all process which may, before the third Monday in September next, be issued under Edition: current; Page: [2165] the authority of the Territory of Missouri shall be as valid as if issued in the name of the State.

Sec. 2. All laws now in force in the Territory of Missouri, which are not repugnant to this constitution, shall remain in force until they expire by their own limitations, or be altered or repealed by the general assembly.

Sec. 3. All fines, penalties, forfeitures, and escheats, accruing to the Territory of Missouri, shall accrue to the use of the State.

Sec. 4. All recognizances heretofore taken, or which may be taken before the third Monday in September next, shall remain valid, and shall pass over to and may be prosecuted in the name of the State; and all bonds executed to the governor of the Territory, or to any other officer or court, in his official capacity, shall pass over to the governor, or other proper State authority, and to their successors in office, for the uses therein respectively expressed, and may be sued for and recovered accordingly. All criminal prosecutions and penal actions which have arisen, or which may arise before the third Monday in September next, and which shall then be depending, shall be prosecuted to judgment and execution in the name of the State. All actions at law which now are, or which, on the third Monday in September next, may be depending in any of the courts of record in the Territory of Missouri may be commenced in or transferred to any court of record of the State which shall have jurisdiction of the subject-matter thereof; and all suits in equity may, in like manner, be commenced in or transferred to the court of chancery.

Sec. 5. All officers, civil and military, now holding commissions under the authority of the United States, or of the Territory of Missouri, shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices until they shall be superseded under the authority of the State; and all such officers holding commissions under the authority of the Territory of Missouri shall receive the same compensation which they hitherto received, in proportion to the time they shall be so employed.

Sec. 6. The first meeting of the general assembly shall be at Saint Louis, with power to adjourn to any other place; and the general assembly, at the first session thereof, shall fix the seat of government until the first day of October, eighteen hundred and twenty-six; and the first session of the general assembly shall have power to fix the compensation of the members thereof; anything in the constitution to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 7. Until the first enumeration shall be made, as directed in this constitution, the county of Howard shall be entitled to eight representatives, the county of Cooper to four representatives, the county of Montgomery to two representatives, the county of Lincoln to one representative, the county of Pike to two representatives, the county of Saint Charles to three representatives, the county of Saint Louis to six representatives, the county of Franklin to two representatives, the county of Jefferson to one representative, the county of Washington to two representatives, the county of Saint Genevieve to four representatives, the county of Cape Girardeau to four representatives, the county of New Madrid to two representatives, the county of Madison to one representative, the county of Wayne to one representative, and that part of the county of Saint Lawrence situated within this State, shall attach to and form part of the county Edition: current; Page: [2166] of Wayne until otherwise provided by law, and the sheriff of the county of Wayne shall appoint the judges of the first election, and the place of holding the same, in the part thus attached; and any person who shall have resided within the limits of this State five months previous to the adoption of this constitution, and who shall be otherwise qualified as prescribed in the third section of the third article thereof, shall be eligible to the house of representatives, anything in this constitution to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 8. For the first election of senators, the State shall be divided into districts, and the apportionment shall be as follows, that is to say, the counties of Howard and Cooper shall compose one district and elect four senators, the counties of Montgomery and Franklin shall compose one district and elect one senator, the county of Saint Charles shall compose one district and elect one senator, the counties of Lincoln and Pike shall compose one district and elect one senator, the county of Saint Louis shall compose one district and elect two senators, the counties of Washington and Jefferson shall compose one district and elect one senator, the county of Saint Genevieve shall compose one district and elect one senator, the counties of Madison and Wayne shall compose one district and elect one senator, the counties of Cape Girardeau and New Madrid shall compose one district and elect two senators; and in all cases where a senatorial district consists of more than one county, it shall be the duty of the clerk of the county second named in that district to certify the returns of the senatorial election within their proper county to the clerk of the county first named, within five days after he shall have received the same; and any person who shall have resided within the limits of this State five months previous to the adoption of this constitution, and who shall be otherwise qualified as prescribed in the fifth section of the third article thereof, shall be eligible to the senate of this State, anything in this constitution to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 9. The president of the convention shall issue writs of election to the sheriffs of the several counties, or in case of vacancy to the coroners, requiring them to cause an election to be held on the fourth Monday in August next, for a governor, a lieutenant-governor, a Representative in the Congress of the United States, for the residue of the Sixteenth Congress, a Representative for the Seventeenth Congress, senators and representatives for the general assembly, sheriffs and coroners, and the returns of all township elections, held in pursuance thereof, shall be made to the clerks of the proper county within five days after the day of election; and any person who shall reside within the limits of this State at the time of the adoption of this constitution, and who shall be otherwise qualified as prescribed in the tenth section of the third article thereof, shall be deemed a qualified elector, anything in this constitution to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 10. The elections shall be conducted according to the existing laws of the Missouri Territory. The clerks of the circuit courts of the several counties shall certify the returns of the election of governor and lieutenant-governor, and transmit the same to the speaker of the house of representatives, at the temporary seat of government, in such time that they may be received on the third Monday of September next. As soon as the general assembly shall be organized Edition: current; Page: [2167] the speaker of the house of representatives, and the president pro tempore of the senate, shall, in the presence of both houses, examine the returns, and declare who are duly elected to fill those offices; and if any two or more persons shall have an equal number of votes, and a higher number than any other person, the general assembly shall determine the election in the manner hereinbefore provided; and the returns of the election for member of Congress shall be made to the secretary of the State within thirty days after the day of election.

Sec. 11. The oaths of office, herein directed to be taken, may be administered by any judge or justice of the peace, until the general assembly shall otherwise direct.

Sec. 12. Until a seal of the State be provided, the governor may use his private seal.

David Barton, President.
Wm. G. Pettus, Secretary.

ORDINANCE

An Ordinance declaring the assent of the people of the State of Missouri, by their representatives in convention assembled, to certain conditions and provisions in the act of Congress on the sixth of March, one thousand eight hundred and twenty, entitled “An act to authorize the people of Missouri Territory to form a constitution and State government, and for the admission of such State into the Union on an equal footing with the original States, and to prohibit slavery in certain Territories

Whereas the act of Congress of the United States of America, approved March the sixth, one thousand eight hundred and twenty, entitled “An act to authorize the people of Missouri Territory to form a constitution and State government, and for the admission of such State into the Union, on an equal footing with the original States, and to prohibit slavery in certain Territories,” contains certain requisitions and provisions, and, among other things, has offered to this convention, when formed, for and in behalf of the people inhabiting this State, for their free acceptance or rejection, the five following propositions, and which, if accepted by this convention in behalf of the people as aforesaid, are to be obligatory on the United States, viz:

1st. That section numbered sixteen in every township, and when such section has been sold or otherwise disposed of, other lands equivalent thereto, and as contiguous as may be, shall be granted to the State, for the use of the inhabitants of such township, for the use of schools.

2d. That all salt-springs, not exceeding twelve in number, with six sections of land adjoining to each, shall be granted to the said State for the use of the said State, the same to be selected by the legislature of said State, on or before the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and twenty-five; and the same, when so selected, to be used under such terms, conditions, and regulations as the legislature of said State shall direct: Provided, That no salt-spring, the right whereof now is, or hereafter shall be, confirmed or adjudged to any individual or individuals shall by this section be granted to said State: And provided also, That the legislature Edition: current; Page: [2168] shall never sell nor lease the same, at any one time, for a longer period than ten years, without the consent of Congress.

3d. That 5 per cent. of the net proceeds of the sale of lands lying within said Territory or State, and which shall be sold by Congress, from and after the first day of January next, after deducting all expense incident to the same, shall be reserved for making public roads and canals, of which three-fifths shall be applied to those objects within the State, under the direction of the legislature thereof, and the other two-fifths in defraying, under the direction of Congress, the expenses to be incurred in making of a road or roads, canal or canals, leading to the said State.

4th. That four entire sections of land be, and the same are hereby, granted to the said State, for the purpose of fixing their seat of government thereon; which said sections shall, under the direction of the legislature of said State, be located, as near as may be, in one body, at any time, in such townships and ranges as the legislature aforesaid may select, on any of the public lands of the United States: Provided, That such location shall be made prior to the public sale of the lands of the United States surrounding such location.

5th. That thirty-six sections, or one entire township, which shall be designated by the President of the United States, together with the other lands heretofore reserved for that purpose, shall be reserved for the use of a seminary of learning, and vested in the legislature of said State, to be appropriated, solely for the use of such seminary, by the legislature:”

Now, this convention, for and in behalf of the people inhabiting this State, and by the authority of the said people, do accept the five before-recited propositions, offered by the act of Congress under which they are assembled; and, in pursuance of the conditions, requisitions, and other provisions in the before-recited act of Congress contained, this convention, for and in behalf of the people inhabiting this State, do ordain, agree, and declare that every and each tract of land sold by the United States, from and after the first day of January next, shall remain exempt from any tax laid by order or under the authority of the State, whether for State, county, or township, or any other purpose whatever, for the term of five years from and after the respective days of sale thereof. And that the bounty-lands granted, or hereafter to be granted, for military services, during the late war, shall, while they continue to be held by the patentees or their heirs, remain exempt, as aforesaid, from taxation, for the term of three years from and after the date of the patents, respectively; Provided, nevertheless, That if the Congress of the United States shall consent to repeal and revoke the following clause in the fifth proposition of the sixth section of the act of Congress before recited, and in these words, viz: “That every and each tract of land sold by the United States, from and after the first day of January next, shall remain exempt from any tax, laid by order or under the authority of the State, whether for State, county, or township, or any other purpose whatever, for the term of five years from and after the day of sale, and further”—that this convention, for and in behalf of the people of the State of Missouri, do hereby ordain, consent, and agree that the same be so revoked and repealed; without which consent of the Congress as aforesaid, the said clause Edition: current; Page: [2169] to remain in full force and operation as first above provided for in this ordinance; and this convention doth hereby request the Congress of the United States so to modify their third proposition that the whole amount of 5 per cent. on the sale of public lands therein offered may be applied to the construction of roads and canals, and the promotion of education within this State, under the direction of the legislature thereof. And this convention, for and in behalf of the people inhabiting this State, and by the authority of the said people, do further ordain, agree, and declare that this ordinance shall be irrevocable, without the consent of the United States.

Done in convention, at Saint Louis, in the State of Missouri, this nineteenth day of July, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty, and of the Independence of the United States of America the forty-fifth.

By order of the convention: David Barton, President.
Wm. G. Pettus, Secretary.

AMENDMENTS TO THE CONSTITUTION OF 1820a

(Ratified 1822)

Article I. Section 1. The office of chancellor is hereby abolished, and the supreme courts and circuit courts shall exercise chancery jurisdiction, in such manner and under such restrictions as shall be prescribed by law.

Sec. 2. The judicial power, as to matters of law and equity, shall be vested in a supreme court, in circuit courts, and in such inferior tribunals as the general assembly may, from time to time, ordain and establish: Provided, The general assembly may establish a court or courts of chancery, and, from time to time, prescribe the jurisdiction, powers, and duties thereof.

Sec. 3. The judges of the supreme court, and the judges of the circuit courts, and chancellor shall, at stated times, receive a compensation for their services, to be fixed by law.

Sec. 4. No person holding an office of profit under the United States, and commissioned by the President, shall, during his continuance in such office, be eligible, appointed to, hold, or exercise any office of profit under this State.

Sec. 5. So much of the thirteenth section of the fourth article of the constitution of this State as provides that the compensation of the governor shall never be less than two thousand dollars annually, shall be repealed.

Sec. 6. So much of the thirteenth section of the fifth article of the constitution of this State as provides that the compensation of the judges of the supreme and circuit courts, and chancellor, shall never be less than two thousand dollars annually, shall be repealed.

Sec. 7. The offices of the judges of the supreme court, and of the judges of the circuit courts, shall expire at the end of the first session Edition: current; Page: [2170] of the next general assembly of this State, or as soon as their successors are, respectively, elected and qualified.

(Ratified 1834-35)

Art. II. Section 1. That the offices of the several judges of the circuit courts within this State shall be vacated on the 1st day of January, 1836.

Sec. 2. That so much of the fifteenth section of the fifth article of the constitution of this State as provides that the courts, respectively, shall appoint their clerks, and that they shall hold their offices during good behavior, shall be, and the same is hereby, abolished.

Sec. 3. That the offices of the clerks of the several courts within this State shall be vacated on the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and thirty-six; and the clerks of the circuit and county courts of the respective counties shall be elected by the qualified electors of their respective counties, and shall hold their offices for the term of six years, and until their successors are duly elected, commissioned, and qualified.

Sec. 4. That the boundary of the State be so altered and extended as to include all that tract of land lying on the north side of the Missouri River, and west of the present boundary of this State, so that the same shall be bounded on the south by the middle of the main channel of the Missouri River, and on the north by the present northern boundary-line of the State, as established by the constitution, when the same is continued in a right line to the west, or to include so much of said tract of land as Congress may assent.

(Ratified 1848-49)

Art. III. The house of representatives shall consist of members to be chosen every second year, by the qualified electors of the several counties, apportioned in the following manner, to wit: The ratio of representation shall be ascertained at each apportioning session of the legislature by dividing the whole number of permanent free white inhabitants of the State by the number of one hundred and forty; each county having said ratio, or less, shall be entitled to one representative; each county having said ratio and a fraction over equal to three-fourths, shall be entitled to two representatives; each county having three times said ratio, shall be entitled to three representatives; each county having four times said ratio and a fraction over equal to one-half, shall be entitled to four representatives; each county having six times said ratio, shall be entitled to five representatives; each county having eight times said ratio, shall be entitled to six representatives; each county having ten times said ratio, shall be entitled to seven representatives; each county having thirteen times said ratio, shall be entitled to eight representatives; each county having fifteen times said ratio, shall be entitled to nine representatives; each county having eighteen times said ratio shall be entitled to ten representatives; each county having twenty-two times said ratio, shall be entitled to eleven representatives; each county having twenty-four times said ratio, shall be entitled to twelve representatives; any county having more than twenty-four times said ratio, shall be represented in the same proportion. And the general assembly which shall meet in Edition: current; Page: [2171] the year eighteen hundred and forty-eight, and every fourth year thereafter, shall apportion the number of representatives among the several counties as herein directed. And the members of the general assembly shall receive, as compensation for their services, not to exceed three dollars per day for the first sixty days; and after that time not to exceed one dollar per day for the remainder of the session; except at a revising session, they may receive a compensation not to exceed three dollars per day for the first one hundred days, and one dollar per day for the remainder of the session; but the general assembly may allow a greater compensation to the presiding officer of each house. No county now established by law shall ever be reduced, by the establishment of new counties, to less than twenty miles square, nor to less than five hundred square miles, nor below the ratio of representation then required; nor shall any county be hereafter established containing less than five hundred square miles; nor shall any county hereafter established be entitled to separate representation, unless the number of permanent free white inhabitants therein shall at the time be equal to three-fourths of the ratio of representation then being, but may be organized with a smaller number for all other purposes, civil and military. The second, fourth, twenty-fourth, and thirty-fourth sections of the third article of the constitution are hereby abolished.

Art. IV. The thirteenth section of the fifth article of the constitution is hereby abolished, and the following is adopted in lieu thereof:

“The governor shall nominate and, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, appoint the judges of the supreme court and the judges of the circuit courts.

“Each judge of the supreme court shall be appointed for the term of twelve years, and each judge of the circuit courts shall be appointed for the term of eight years; and every appointment to fill a vacancy shall be for the residue of the term only; but in all cases the judge shall continue in office until a successor shall be appointed and qualified. The judges of the supreme and circuit courts shall be eligible to reappointment. The offices of the several supreme and circuit judges shall be vacated on the first day of March, eighteen hundred and forty-nine.”a

Art. V. If there be a vacancy in the office of judge of any circuit, or if he be sick, absent, or from any cause unable to hold any term of court of any county of his circuit, such term of court may be held by a judge of any other circuit; and, at the request of the judge of any circuit, any term of court in his circuit may be held by the judge of any other circuit.

(Ratified 1850-51)

Art. VI. Section 1. That hereafter the judges of the supreme court shall be elected by the qualified electors of the State; and each shall hold his office for the term of six years only, but may continue in office until his successor shall be elected and qualified; and if any vacancy shall happen in the office of any judge of the supreme court by death, resignation, removal out of the State, or by any other Edition: current; Page: [2172] disqualification, the governor shall, upon being satisfied that a vacancy exists, issue a writ of election to fill such vacancy; but every election to fill a vacancy shall be for the residue of the term only. The general assembly shall provide by law for the election of said judges by the qualified voters in the State; and in case of a tie, or a contested election, between the candidates, the same shall be determined in the manner to be prescribed by law; and the general assembly shall also provide for an election to fill any vacancy which shall occur at any time within twelve months preceding a general election for said judges. The first general election for supreme-court judges shall be on the first Monday in August, ad 1851, and on the first Monday in August every six years thereafter. If a vacancy shall occur in the office of a supreme-court judge, less than twelve months before a general election for said judges, such vacancy shall be filled by an appointment by the governor; and the judge so appointed shall hold his office only until the next general election for said judges.

Sec. 2. The offices of the several supreme-court judges shall be vacated on the first Monday in August, ad 1851; and all parts of the original constitution, or of any amendment thereto, inconsistent with or repugnant to this amendment are hereby abolished.

Art. VII. That so much of the thirteenth section of the fifth article of the constitution of this State, ratified at the present session of the general assembly, as provides that the governor shall nominate and, by and with the advice and consent of the senate, appoint the judges of the circuit courts, and that each judge of the circuit courts shall be appointed for the term of eight years, and that every appointment to fill a vacancy of such judge shall be for the residue of the term only, is hereby abolished; and hereafter each judge of the circuit courts shall be elected by the qualified electors of their respective circuits, and shall be elected for the term of six years, but may continue in office until his successor shall be elected and qualified; and if any vacancy shall happen in the office of any circuit judge, by death, resignation, removal out of his circuit, or by any other disqualification, the governor shall, upon being satisfied that a vacancy exists, issue a writ of election to fill such vacancy: Provided, That said vacancy shall happen at least six months before the next general election for said judge; but if such vacancy shall happen within six months of the general election aforesaid, the governor shall appoint a judge for such circuit; but every such election or appointment to fill a vacancy shall be for the residue of the term only. And the general assembly shall provide by law for the election of said judges in their respective circuits; and in case of a tie or contested election between the candidates, the same shall be determined in the manner to be prescribed by law. And the general assembly shall provide by law for the election of said judges in their respective circuits, to fill any vacancy which shall occur at any time at least six months before a general election for said judges. The first general election for circuit judges shall be on the first Monday in August, ad 1851, and on the first Monday in August every six years thereafter. No judicial circuit shall be altered or changed at any session of the general assembly next preceding the general election for said judges. The offices of the several circuit judges shall be vacated on the first Monday in August, ad 1851.

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Art. VIII. Section 1. That the twenty-first section of the fourth article of the Constitution of the State of Missouri be, and the same is hereby, abolished.

Sec. 2. There shall be a secretary of state, who shall be elected by the qualified voters of this State, at such time and in such manner as shall be provided by law. He shall hold his office for four years, unless sooner removed by an impeachment. He shall keep a register of the official acts of the governor, and, when necessary, shall attest them, and he shall lay the same, together with all papers relating thereto, before either house of the general assembly, whenever required so to do, and shall perform such other duties as may be enjoined on him by law.

Sec. 3. The eighteenth section of the fifth article of the constitution of the State of Missouri is hereby abolished.

Sec. 4. There shall be an attorney-general, who shall be elected by the qualified voters of this State, at such times and in such manner as shall be provided by law. He shall remain in office four years, and shall perform such duties as shall be required of him by law.

Sec. 5. The twelfth section of the fourth article of the constitution of this State is hereby abolished.

Sec. 6. There shall be an auditor of public accounts, who shall be elected by the qualified voters of this State, at such times and in such manner as shall be provided by law. He shall remain in office four years, and shall perform such duties as shall be required of him by law. His office shall be kept at the seat of government.

Sec. 7. The thirty-first section of the third article of the constitution of this State is hereby abolished.

Sec. 8. A State treasurer shall be elected by the qualified voters of this State, at such times and in such manner as shall be provided by law, who shall continue in office for four years, and who shall keep his office at the seat of government. No money shall be drawn from the treasury but in consequence of appropriations made by law, and an accurate account of the receipts and expenditures of the public money shall annually be published.

Sec. 9. There shall be a register of lands elected by the qualified voters of this State, at such time and in such manner as shall be provided by law. He shall hold his office for four years, shall keep his office at the seat of government, and shall perform such duties as shall be required of him by law.

(Ratified 1852-53)

Art. IX. The legislature shall have no power to grant divorces, but may authorize the courts of justice to grant them, for such causes as may be specified by law: Provided, That such laws be general and uniform in their operation throughout the State.

(Ratified 1854-55)

Art. X. That all that territory now known as the county of Schuyler is hereby declared to constitute a constitutional county, and, as such, shall be entitled to all the privileges, civil and political, which now belong to any county within the State of Missouri.

Article eight of the constitution of the State of Missouri, respecting banks, be, and the same is hereby, abolished, and the following substituted in lieu thereof:

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Art. VIII. The general assembly shall have power to establish such bank or banks as may be deemed necessary for the interests of the State; but every bank so established shall be based upon a specie capital, and made liable to redeem its issues in gold or silver: Provided, That the number of banks chartered shall never exceed ten, and the aggregate amount of capital shall never exceed twenty millions of dollars.”

(Ratified 1859)

The public debt of this State, created by the issue of bonds or other State securities, or by incurring any State liability whatever, for the prosecution of internal improvements, or for any other purpose, shall never exceed the sum of thirty millions of dollars; and the legislature shall have no power to create any State liability beyond this amount, except to repel invasion, or to suppress insurrection or civil war.

(Ratified 1861)

The general assembly shall have power to establish a county, consisting of all that territory lying within the following limits, which shall possess and enjoy all the powers and privileges of any county now established, anything in the third article of amendments to the constitution to the contrary notwithstanding; namely, the territory lying between the northern boundary of Gentry County proper and the northern boundary of the State of Missouri, and between the former western boundary of said State and the line dividing ranges twenty-nine and thirty west of the fifth principal meridian.

ORDINANCES OF THE CONVENTION OF MISSOURI—1861-’63*a

AMENDING THE CONSTITUTION OF 1820

The people of the State of Missouri, by their delegates in convention assembled, do ordain as follows:

First. That the offices of governor, lieutenant-governor, secretary of state, and members of the general assembly be, and the same are hereby, vacated.

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Second. A governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state shall be appointed by this convention to discharge the duties and exercise the powers which pertain to their respective offices by the existing laws of the State, and to continue in office until the first Monday of November, 1861, and until their successors are elected and qualified, or until the qualified voters, as hereinafter provided, disapprove the action of this convention.

Third. On the first Monday of November, 1861, a governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state, and members of the general assembly, shall be elected by the qualified voters of this State, to hold their offices during the term for which the present incumbents of said offices were elected.

Fourth. The elections provided to be held by this ordinance on the first Monday of November, 1861, shall be conducted in the same manner in all respects as is now provided by the election laws of this State now in force, and shall be held by the qualified voters of the State, at the same place in the election precincts now established by law where the elections were held for delegates to this convention on the 18th day of February last; and in case any clerk shall fail to make out the proper poll-books, or in case any sheriff shall fail to deliver the same to the judges of election, then the clerks of the election may proceed to make out such poll-books.

Fifth. In case the clerks of the several courts, whose duty it is as now provided by law to certify and send up to the secretary of state an abstract of the votes given at such election, or in case there should be a failure to receive such returns at the seat of government within twenty days after the first Monday of November, 1861, the secretary of state shall dispatch a messenger to the county not returned, with directions to bring up the poll-books authorized to be retained by the judges of election, and the secretary of state, in the presence of the governor, shall proceed to cast up the votes given at such election, and shall thereupon proceed to issue commissions to the candidates having the highest number of votes.

Sixth. Be it further ordained, That the returns of the election for governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state, provided for by this ordinance, shall be made to the office of the secretary of state as now provided by law; and the secretary of state, within forty days after the first Monday of November, 1861, or sooner if the returns shall have been made, shall, in the presence of the governor, proceed to cast up the votes given at said election for governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state; and shall give to the persons having the highest number of votes for these offices respectively certificates of their election; and the persons so elected shall immediately thereafter be qualified and enter upon the discharge of the duties of their respective offices.

CONCERNING THE ABROGATION OF CERTAIN LAWS.

Whereas the general assembly of the State of Missouri did, in secret session, contrary to the known wishes of their constituents, in violation of the constitution and the dearest rights and interests of the people, and for the purpose of dissolving the political relations of this State to the Government of the United States, and subverting the Edition: current; Page: [2176] institutions of this State, enact certain odious laws hereinafter enumerated: Therefore,

First. Be it ordained by the people of Missouri, in convention assembled, That an act entitled “An act to provide for the organization, government, and support of the military forces of the State of Missouri,” approved May 14, 1861; also, an act to create a military fund for the State, entitled “An act to raise money to arm the State, repel invasion, and protect the lives and property of the people of Missouri,” approved May 11, 1861; also, an act entitled “An act to authorize the appointment of one major-general for the Missouri militia,” approved May 15, 1861; also, a “Joint resolution to suspend the apportionment of the State school-money for the year 1861,” approved May 11, 1861; also, an act entitled “An act to perpetuate friendly relations with the Indian tribes,” approved May 11, 1861; be, and the same are hereby, repealed and declared of no effect or validity whatever.

Second. That all commissions issued or appointments made under the authority of the above-recited acts, or any of them, be, and the same are hereby, annulled; and all soldiers and other persons serving or employed under any of said acts are hereby disbanded and discharged from such service or employment.

Third. And be it further ordained, That for the purpose of providing for the organization of the militia of the State, the following act, to wit, an act entitled “An act to govern and regulate the volunteer militia of the State,” approved December 31, 1859, be, and the same is hereby, revived and declared to be in full force and effect.

SUBMITTING THE ACTION OF THE CONVENTION TO THE PEOPLE

Be it ordained by the people of Missouri, in convention assembled, That at the election provided to be held on the first Monday of November, eighteen hundred and sixty-one, for the election of governor, lieutenant-governor, secretary of state, and members of the general assembly, the several clerks of the county courts, or, in case said clerks shall fail, then the clerks of the election, in making the poll-books for the election, shall provide two columns, one headed “For the action of the convention,” and the other “Against the action of the convention;” and if a majority of the legal votes given upon the action of the convention be for the same, then the officers elected shall hold their offices as provided by the ordinance for their election; but if a majority of the votes cast as aforesaid be against the action of the convention, then said election shall be null and void, and the persons so chosen shall not enter upon the discharge of the duties of their offices, the officers chosen by this convention shall go out of office, and the ordinance of this convention providing for the abrogation of certain acts of the legislature shall thereafter be of no force or effect whatever. The returns of the votes so cast on the action of the convention shall be made to the office of secretary of state in the same manner as is provided by ordinance of this convention in regard to the offices of governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state, and the votes shall be cast up by the same officer; and when the result Edition: current; Page: [2177] thereof shall be ascertained, the governor appointed by this convention shall, by public proclamation, announce the same, which proclamation shall be filed in the office of secretary of state.

CHANGING THE TIME OF HOLDING THE ELECTIONS

Whereas this convention did, during its session at Jefferson City, on the 30th day of July, ad 1861, adopt an ordinance providing for the election of certain State officers, and also an ordinance providing for submitting its action to the people of the State of Missouri, and appointing a time therefor; and whereas it is manifest that, by reason of the disturbed condition of the State, it will be impossible, at the time so appointed, to elicit a fair expression of the popular will: Therefore,

Be it ordained by the people of the State of Missouri, in convention assembled, as follows, to wit:

First. That so much of an ordinance entitled “An ordinance providing for certain amendments to the constitution,” (adopted on the 30th day of July, ad 1861,) as provides for the election of a governor, lieutenant-governor, secretary of state, and members of the general assembly, on the first Monday of November, ad 1861, and so much of an ordinance entitled “An ordinance for submitting the action of this convention to a vote of the people of Missouri,” (adopted on the same day,) as provides for submitting the action of this convention to a vote of the people on the first Monday of November, ad 1861, be, and the same are hereby, so modified that said elections shall not be held on the day therein named, but instead thereof shall be held on the first Monday of August, ad 1862.

Second. Said elections, and all other elections held previous thereto, shall in all other respects be held, and the returns thereof made, as provided in the ordinances heretofore adopted by this convention.

Third. The governor, lieutenant-governor, and secretary of state heretofore appointed by this convention, shall discharge the duties and exercise the powers which pertain to their respective offices, and continue in office until the first Monday of August, ad 1862, and until their successors are duly elected and qualified, or until the qualified voters of the State shall disapprove the action of this convention.

ABOLISHING CERTAIN OFFICES, REDUCING SALARIES, AND TESTING THE LOYALTY OF CIVIL OFFICERS, AND OFFERING AMNESTY TO CERTAIN PERSONS ON CERTAIN CONDITIONS