|Pages 1-22||Pages 42-59|
|CHAP. VIII.||[Ch. XLVIII in original.]|
|[Chan. Rev. p. 157.]|
|I. WHEREAS great numbers of slaves, horses, and other property belonging to the citizens of this commonwealth and of the neighbouring states, have, during the war, been carried off, or have gone from their owners and been concealed by wicked and evil disposed persons; and it is reasonable that the owners should be enabled to recover their property in an easy and expeditious manner: Be it therefore enacted, That any person or persons who have any such slave or slaves, horses or other property in his or her possession, and who shall not before the first day of October next deliver such slave or slaves, horses or other property to the owner or owners thereof, if known, and if not known, publish a particular description of such slave or slaves, horses or other property three times in the Virginia gazette, shall forfeit and pay the sum of fifty pounds. And if any person or persons possessed of such slave or slaves, horses or other property as aforesaid, shall delay to deliver or publish the same as above directed, within he [the] time hereby limited, he or she shall forfeit and pay the sum of five pounds, for every month he or she shall so delay after the said first day of October next, and shall moreover be liable to the action of the party grieved at the common law, in which the plaintiff shall recover double damages. And if the defendant in any such action shall not immediately pay and satisfy the damages, he or she shall be imprisoned six months, without bail or mainprize, unless the damages are sooner discharged; the act of insolvency, or any other law to the contrary notwithstanding; and the act of limitation shall be no bar to such action.|| Slaves, horses, & other property lost during the war, how
Persons having such property in possession, to adversise in Gazette.
|II. And be it further enacted, That all and every person and persons from whom any such slave or slaves, horses or other property have gone or been taken as aforesaid, on application to any two justices of the peace for the county where such slave or slaves, horses or other property may be, and making proof,||Penalty for failure.|
|to the satisfaction of such justices, of his or her right to such slaves, horses, or other property, and that the same were taken or went off from him in consequence of the invasion of this or any of the neighbouring states, shall be entitled to a warrant from such justices, under their hands and seals, directed to the sheriff or any constable of the said county, commanding them, and each and every of them, to take such slave or slaves, horse or horses, or other property, and deliver the same to the owners thereof. Provided, That before granting such warrant, the person or persons demanding the same shall give bond, with sufficient security, in such sum as the justices shall direct, payable to the person or persons in whose possession the slave or slaves, horse or horses, or other property claimed as aforesaid may be, to return the same to the possessors in case he or she so claiming shall fail to prove his or her right to such slaves, horses or other property, at the trial of any suit to b brought for the same.|| Proprietors may obtain warrants for taking their property;
giving bond & security. |
|III. And be it further enacted, That where any person or persons shall be possessed of any slaves, horses or other property suspected to have gone or to have been taken from their owners, in consequence of any invasion as aforesaid, it shall be lawful for any two justices of the peace for the county where such persons reside, on information to them made, to cause such person or persons to come before them, and if such suspicion shall appear to them to be well founded, after hearing the parties, to cause such person or persons to enter into a recognizance to the governor or chief magistrate of this commonwealth, in such sum as the said justices shall judge reasonable, and with sufficient security, on condition that he or she shall not sell, dispose of or secrete any such slave or slaves, horses or other property, for such time as the said justices shall think proper, not exceeding one year. And when any slave or slaves shall be found wandering about, it shall be lawful for any justice of the peace to commit such slave or slaves to the gaol of his county, by warrant under his hand and seal, and the sheriff or gaoler is hereby required to receive such slave or slaves, and to confine him, her or them in close goal for three months, unless the owner or owners of such slave or slaves shall sooner appear. And such sheriff or gaoler shall, within|| Two justices may secure property suspected to belong to others
Wandering slaves may be committed to prison.
|three weeks after such commitment, cause such slave or slaves to be advertised in the Virginia gazette, which advertisement shall be inserted in three successive papers, and if no owner shall appear within the time limited for the confinement of such slave or slaves, the sheriff or goaler may hire out such slave or slaves for the payment of his prison fees and the expences of advertising. And if the owner shall apply within the time aforesaid, he shall pay the said fees and expences of advertising, and the further sum of twenty shillings for each slave so confined and advertised as aforesaid.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, That the penalties by this act imposed may be recovered in any court of record in this commonwealth, by action of debt, indictment or information, and shall be applied, the one half thereof to the use of the commonwealth, and the other half to the use of the informer. Provided always, That this act, so far as it respects the penalties to be incurred for not delivering to the owner, or not publishing any such slaves, horses or other property, shall not extend to bona fide purchasers of such slaves, horses or other property, or to such as may have pursued the method directed by the laws now in force for taking up of strays. Provided also, That this act shall not extend to slaves, horses or other property taken by the enemy and retaken in action by any soldier or citizen of this state, or any of the United States, except where the same were by capitulation or agreement to be returned to their owners.|| Penalties how to be recovered & appropriated. |
Bona fide purchasers exempted from penalties.
Act not to extend to property taken by enemy and retaken in action.
|CHAP. IX.||[Ch. XLIX, in original.]|
|I. WHEREAS the purchasers of lots in the town of Moorefield, from the difficulty of procuring materials, have not been able to build on their said lots within the time prescribed by an act entitled, "An act for establishing the town of Moorefield, in the county of Hampshire:||Further time allowed purchasers of lots, in towns of Moorefield and Bath, to build thereon.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted, That the farther time of three years, from the passing of this act, shall be allowed the purchasers of lots in the said town to build upon and save the same.|
|III. And whereas the purchasers of lots in the town of Bath, in the county of Berkeley, labour under the like inconveniencies, arising from the same causes; for remedy whereof,|
|IV. Be it further enacted, That the purchasers of lots in the said last mentioned town shall be allowed the farther time of three years, from the passing of this act, to build on and save the same; any law to the contrary thereof notwithstanding.|
|CHAP. X.||[Chap. L, in original.]|
|Continued by May 1783 c. 4, & Oct. 1783, c. 10.|
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That the courts of the several counties within this state shall, and they are hereby empowered and required either to hold special courts, or to appoint so many of their own body as to them shall seem most proper, to collect and state, from the best proof the nature of the case will admit of, the various losses and injuries, both public and private, which have been sustained within their respective counties during the war, from the depredations of the enemy in their several invasions, and to state the same under so many different heads as such losses or injuries may consist of, and return their proceedings herein, together with the proof made in support thereof, to the governor and council, to be by them laid before the next assembly.|| County courts to
collect & state evidence of injuries from depredations of the enemy. |
How to report their proceedings.
An act to survey certain roads.
|[*Chap. LI in original.]|
|I. WHEREAS the roads from the passes in the mountain commonly called the Blue Ridge to the seat of government, and to other sea-port towns, and from one sea-port town to another, are so indirect and unfixed that great difficulty and expence hath arose to the good people to the commonwealth traveling thereon, as well as greatly encreasing the public charge of carriage: To prepare for the remedy of which evil,||Preamble.|
|II. Be it enacted, That where any one or more persons shall employ a surveyor, with his proper attendants,|
|at his or the said employers own expence, to survey any road or roads as aforesaid, and the surveyor with his said attendants shall first, before some justice of the peace, make oath or affirmation that they will justly and truly do their duty in the mensuration and survey so employed in by the employer or employers aforesaid, and having a certificate thereof from the said justice, shall be permitted and empowered to take the courses and measure the said roads, and mark the distance of miles on any of the natural grown trees on the sides thereof, if his instructions from his employer or employers so direct; and the said surveyor who shall have been so qualified and run his courses along the traverses and meanders of any road from the said mountain to the seat of government, to any other sea-port town, or from one sea-port town to another, shall hereby be further empowered, with his necessary attendants as aforesaid, without any let or hindrance whatsoever, to run a protracted or straight line to his place of departure, or to any other point, to ascertain the true distance, that the same may be laid before the next or some future general assembly of this commonwealth, to take future order therein.||Survey of roads through the passes in the Blue Ridge to the seat of government, or to sea-port towns, and from one sea-port town to another, authorised, at the expense of the parties employing surveyors.|
|III. And be it further enacted, That if any person or persons shall stop, oppose or hinder any surveyor or his attendants from doing their duty therein as aforesaid, upon proof thereof made, he or they shall pay all costs attending such survey, and the penalty of ten pounds, to be recovered in any court of record within this commonwealth. Provided nevertheless, That no protracted course of any survey to be made as aforesaid, shall be run between the first day of May and the fifteenth day of July, whereby damage shall be done to any field of grain by the surveyor and his attendants passing through the same, without consent of the owner thereof.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, That any penalty recovered by virtue of this act, shall be appropriated towards lessening the county levy where such recovery shall be made.|
|CHAP. XII.||[Chap. LII in original.]|
|I. WHEREAS it hath been represented to this general assembly, that the laying off ninety-six acres of land in lots and streets for a town at the court-house in the county of Buckingham, will be of great utility:||Town of Greensville at Buckingham court-house established.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted, That ninety-six acres of land, lying on the public road leading from the said court-house down the country, and uninclosed, being part of a large tract of land the property of John Cox, be, and the same is hereby vested in John Nicholas, Joseph Cabell, Thomas Miller, Charles Patteson, and Thomas Anderson, gentlemen, trustees, to be by them, or any three of them, laid out into lots of half an acre each, with convenient streets, which shall be, and the same is hereby established a town, by the name of Greensville: That so soon as the said ninety-six acres of land shall be so laid off into lots and streets, the said trustees, or any three of them, shall proceed to sell the said lots at public auction for the best price that can be had, the time and place of which sale shall be previously advertised for three months in the Virginia gazette, the purchasers to hold the said lots respectively subject to the condition of building on each of the said lots a dwelling-house sixteen feet square at least, to be finished fit for habitation within five years from the day of sale; and the said trustees, or any three of them, shall, and they are hereby empowered to convey the said lots to the purchasers thereof in fee simple, subject to the condition aforesaid, and pay nine-tenths of the money arising from the sale thereof to the said John Cox, his heirs, executors, administrators or assigns, and the remaining one-tenth to apply towards repairing the court-house and building a prison for the said county: Provided always, That four of the said lots in the centre of the said town shall be, and they are hereby reserved for the public use of the said county.|
|III. And be it further enacted, That one hundred acres of land, the property also of the said John Cox, and adjoining the said town, be, and the same is hereby vested in the said trustees, to and for the common use and benefit of the inhabitants of the said town. The said trustees, or the major part of them, shall have power from time to time to settle and determine all disputes concerning the bounds of the said lots, and to settle such rules and orders for the regular and orderly building of houses thereon, as to them shall seem best and most convenient; and in case of the death, removal out of the county, or other legal disability of any of the said trustees, it shall be lawful for the other trustees to elect and choose so many other person in the room of those dead, removed or disabled, as shall make up the number; which trustees so chosen shall be, to all intents and purposes, vested with the same power and authority as those in this act particularly mentioned:||Commons.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, That the purchasers of the lots in the said town, so soon as they shall have built upon and saved the same, according to the condition of their respective deeds of conveyance, shall be entitled to, and have and enjoy all the rights, privileges and immunities which the freeholders and inhabitants of other towns in this state not incorporated by charter have, hold and enjoy. If the purchaser of any lot shall fail to build thereon within the time before limited, the said trustees, or the major part of them, may thereupon enter into such lot and may sell the same again, and apply the money towards repairing the streets, or in any other way for the benefit of the said town.|
|CHAP. XIII.||[Chap. LIII, in original.]|
|An act for altering the place of holding courts in the county of Lunenburg.|
|I. WHEREAS it is represented to this present general assembly, that the situation of the present court-house in the county of Lunenburg is inconvenient to the inhabitants thereof:||Place of holding courts in Lunenburg county removed.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted, That the justices of the said county of Lunenburg, or a majority of them, shall provide for building, as soon as may be, a court-house, prison, pillory, and stocks, on some convenient place at or near the centre of the said county; and that after such buildings shall be compleated, a court for the said county shall be constantly held at such place, and that in the mean time, and until such buildings shall be compleated, the justices may hold their sessions at such place as they may think most convenient.|
|[Chap. LIV in original.]|
|[Chan. Rev. p. 158.]|
|I. WHEREAS by an act intituled, "An act to amend an act intituled, An act limiting the time for continuing the delegates to general congress in office and making provision for their support, and for other purposes," it is enacted, that no person shall thereafter be eligible to or capable of serving in congress for more than three years in any term of six years; and since the passing the said law the confederation of the United States hath been compleated, whereby it is declared, that no person shall be capable of sitting in congress|| See vol. 9, p. 158.|
Vol. 10, p. 163.
Limitation to 3 years service to delegates to congress repealed.
|longer than three years at any one time, and thereby so much of the said recited act is become unnecessary. And whereas the present mode of supporting the delegates in congress is inconvenient: Be it enacted by the General Assembly, That so much of the said recited act as limits the time of continuing the delegates in congress from this commonwealth, shall be, and the same is hereby repealed. And for providing a more certain and adequate mode of supporting and paying the delegates in congress from this state, in lieu of the former pay and allowance heretofore made them, they, and each of them, shall have and receive the sum of eight dollars per day for every day they shall be travelling to, attending on, and returning from congress, to be paid them quarterly out of such public money as shall hereafter be set apart and appropriated for that use. All and every act or acts that come within the purview and meaning of this act shall be, and the same are hereby repealed.|| Future provision for delegates. |
|[Chap. LV in original[|
|[Chan. Rev. p. 159.]|
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That it shall be lawful for any court within this commonwealth, and they are hereby required, upon motion and legal proof to them made, to give judgment against every person or persons for the amount of all such sums of money as he or they shall owe or be indebted to the United States; also upon motion and legal proof, to give judgment against all and every person or persons possessed of any of the effects or property belonging to the United States for such effects and property, together with costs in either case, and to award execution thereupon: Provided, ten days previous notice be||Judgment by motion, against persons, indebted to, or having effects of, U, States.|
|given to the defendant or defendants of every such motion, and the party making the same producing to the court a proper power and authority to receive such money, effects or property, in behalf of the said United States.|
|[Ch. LVI, in original.]|
|[Chan. Rev. p. 159.]|
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That the commissioners appointed or to be appointed by authority of congress to settle the accounts between this state and the United States, as well as the accounts of the quarter-masters and commissaries, the hospital, clothier and marine departments, shall be, and they are hereby empowered to call before them and examine, upon oath or affirmation, any witnesses they may think necessary respecting the settlement of the said accounts. Ever person called upon and refusing or neglecting to appear before the said commissioners and give testimony, not shewing good cause for such refusal or neglect, to be adjudged of by the court, shall forfeit and pay the sum of thirty pounds, to be recovered by motion in any court of record, with costs, and applied to the use of the commonwealth; Provided the party hath ten days previous notice of such motion. Witnesses thought necessary shall attend in consequence of a summon from the commissioners, and those residing within the same county shall be allowed the same pay as witnesses attending the county court, and such as live in other counties shall be allowed the same pay as witnesses attending the general court.|| Commissioners appointed to settle accounts between this state
and U. States, authorised to summon witnesses. |
Penalty on witnesses.
|CHAP. XVII.||[Ch. LVII. in original.]|
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That the court of hustings for the borough of Winchester shall have the sole and exclusive power of granting licenses to keep ordinaries within the said borough, regulating the same, and restraining of tippling houses, in the same manner and under the like rules and regulations as are prescribed for the justices of any county court within this commonwealth by an act intituled, "An act for regulating ordinaries and restraint of tipling houses." And that the court of the said county of Frederick shall not exercise any jurisdiction in that case as hath been formerly done. Provided always, That nothing in this act shall be construed to deprive the court of the said county of Frederick of their jurisdiction where any indictment is or may hereafter be found, any information filed, or action of debt brought against any person for retailing liquors without license.||Court of hustings of Winchester to have exclusive power of licensing ordinaries and regulating them.|
|II. And be it further enacted, That the clerk of the said court of hustings shall, on the first Tuesday in May and November annually, set up in the court-house of the said county a list of all licensed ordinary keepers within the said borough, for the information of the grand jury.||Clerk to set up list of licensed ordinary keepers.|
| III. Provided always, and be it further enacted, That all
ordinary keepers shall be incapable of being elected or acting as judges of the said court of
||Ordinary keepers incapable of acting as judges of hustings court.|
|CHAP. XVIII.||[Ch. LVIII in original.]|
|I. BE it enacted by the General Assembly, That all the slaves formerly belonging to Walter King, which were escheated under the act concerning escheats and forfeitures from British subjects, and purchased for the use or on account of this commonwealth, be restored to Walter King Cole, and be vested in him and his heirs and assigns forever.||Slaves of Walter King escheated & purchased on behalf of commonwealth, restored to Walter King Cole.|
|And be it enacted, that so much of the act of assembly intituled, "An act to suspend in part the operation of the act intituled, An act concerning escheats and forfeitures from British subjects," as gives the said Walter King Cole, or any other person, a right to demand any kind of price or compensation for the sale of the said slaves,(other than reasonable hire for the time they remained in the public service, which is hereby directed to be accounted for and allowed to the said Walter King Cole) shall be, and is hereby repealed: Saving to all persons, other than the said Walter King and all persons claiming under him, all the right, title and interest they would or might have had if this act had never been made.||So much of former act as gives Walter King Cole, any compensation, except reasonable hires, while slaves in public service, repealed.|
|III. And whereas by a deed of bargain and sale from John Harmer, esquire, of Great-Britain, to George Harmer, esquire, now a citizen of this commonwealth, all the estate both real and personal of the said John Harmer, lying and being in this commonwealth, is conveyed to the said George Harmer, in fee simple, and other parts of the said estate beside that situate in the county of Henry, has remained unsold under the escheat and forfeiture act, and the operation of the said act is only suspended so far as relates to the lands in the said county of Henry:||Recital of conveyance from John Harmer to George Harmer of all his estate real and personal in this commonwealth.|
|IV. Be it therefore enacted, That all the other estate, of what nature or kind soever, which formerly belonged||All the estate formerly belonging|
|to the said John Harmer, within this commonwealth, and which now remains unsold by virtue of the escheat and forfeiture act, and which is conveyed by the said John Harmer to the said George Harmer, by the deed aforesaid, is hereby declared not to be subject to the said act concerning escheats and forfeitures from British subjects. And the said George may, and he is hereby authorized and empowered to sue for and recover any estate either real or personal, to which the said John Harmer was entitled, in this commonwealth, in the same manner as he, the said John Harmer, might or could have done were he now a citizen of this commonwealth. And the said George Harmer shall be, and he is hereby made subject to be sued and proceeded against in law or equity for any debts or transactions of the said John Harmer, in this commonwealth, in the same manner as he, the said John Harmer, might or could be if he was now a citizen thereof.|| to John Harmer declared not subject to escheat.|
George Harmer authorised to recover said estate and subject to debts of John Harmer.
|[Ch. LIX in original.]|
|I. WHEREAS it hath been represented to this present general assembly, that the laying off fifty acres of land whereon William Bradley now lives, in the county of Culpeper, in lots and streets for a town, will be of great utility:||Town of Stevensburg in Culpeper county, established.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted, That fifty acres of land, being part of a larger tract, the property of the said William Bradley, and whereon he lives, be, and the same is hereby vested in Burkett Davenport, John Wharton, Robert Slaughter, junior, Robert Pollard, Richard Waugh, James Duncanson, and French Strother, gentlemen, trustees, to be by them, or any four of them, laid out into lots of half an acre each, with convenient streets, which shall be, and the same is hereby|
|established a town by the name of Stevensburg: that so soon as the said fifty acres of land shall be so laid out into lots and streets, the said trustees, or any four of them, shall proceed to sell the said lots at public auction, for the best price that can be had, the time and place of which sale shall be previously advertised for one month in the Virginia gazette: the purchasers to hold the said lots respectively subject to the condition of building thereon a dwelling-house sixteen feet square at least, to be finished fit for habitation within three years from the day of sale. And the said trustees, or any four of them shall, and they are hereby empowered to convey the said lots to the purchasers in fee simple, subject to the condition aforesaid, and to pay the money arising from the sale thereof to the said William Bradley, his executors, administrators or assigns.|
|III. Provided always, and be it further enacted, That after the said lots and streets shall be laid out as aforesaid, such and so many of the lots whereon any house or houses already built by the said William Bradley may happen to be, shall not be sold by the said trustees, but shall be and remain to the said William Bradley, his heirs or assigns for ever.|
|IV. And be it further enacted, That the said trustees, or any four of them, shall have power, from time to time, to settle and determine all disputes concerning the bounds of the lots, and to settle and establish such rules and orders for the regular building of houses thereon, as to them shall seem best; and that in case of the death, removal out of the country, or other legal disability of any of the trustees before named, it shall be lawful for the surviving or remaining trustees to elect and choose so many other person in the room of those dead or disabled as shall make up the number seven, which trustees so chosen, shall, to all intents and purposes, be vested with the same powers and authority as any other in this act particularly nominated and appointed.|
|V. And be it further enacted, That the purchasers of the lots in the said town, so soon as they shall have built upon and saved the same, according to the conditions of their respective deeds of conveyance, shall then be entitled to and have and enjoy all the rights, privileges and immunities which the freeholders and|
|inhabitants of other towns in this state, not incorporated, hold and enjoy. If the purchaser of any lot shall fail to build thereon within the time before limited, the said trustees, or any four of them, may thereupon enter into such lot and sell the same again, and apply the money for the benefit of the inhabitants of the said town.|
|[Ch. LX. in original.]|
|[Chan. Rev. p. 159.]|
|I. WHEREAS it hath been represented, that the discontinuing of the ferry from the lands of John Lynch, in Bedford county, across the Fluvanna to the opposite shore in the county of Amherst, has proved inconvenient to the public: Be it therefore enacted by the General Assembly, That so much of the act of assembly passed at the last session, intituled, "An act for establishing a new ferry," as discontinues the said ferry, shall be, and the same is hereby repealed.|
| CHAP. XXI
An act to authorize the manumission of slaves.
| [Ch. LXI. in original.] |
[Chan. Rev. p. 159.]
|I. WHEREAS application hath been made to this present general assembly, that those persons who are disposed to emancipate their slaves may be empowered so to do, and the same hath been judged expedient under certain restrictions: Be it therefore enacted, That it shall hereafter be lawful for any person, by his or her last will and testament, or by any other instrument in writing, under his or her hand and seal, attested and proved in the county court by two witnesses, or acknowledged by the party in the court of the county where he or she resides to emancipate and set free, his or her slaves, or any of them, who shall thereupon be entirely and fully discharged from the performance of any contract entered into during servitude, and enjoy as full freedom as if they had been particularly named and freed by this act.|| Preamble. |
How slaves may be emancipated.
|II. Provided always, and be it further enacted, That all slaves so set free, not being in the judgment of the court, of sound mind and body, or being above the age of forty-five years, or being males under the age of twenty-one, or females under the age of eighteen years, shall respectively be supported and maintained by the person so liberating them, or by his or her estate; and upon neglect or refusal so to do, the court of the county where such neglect or refusal may be, is hereby empowered and required, upon application to them made, to order the sheriff to distrain and sell so much of the person's estate as shall be sufficient for that purpose. Provided also, That every person by written instrument in his life time, or if by last will and testament, the executors of every person freeing any slave, shall cause to be delivered to him or her, a copy of the instrument of emancipation, attested by the clerk of the court of the county, who shall be paid therefor, by the person emancipating, five shillings, to be collected in the manner of other clerk's fees. Every person neglecting or refusing to deliver to any slave by him or her set free, such copy, shall forfeit and pay|| Aged or infirm to be supported by former master; |
Or expence levied on by order of court.
Copy of instrument of emancipation to be delivered to the slave.
Penalty for neglect on the master;
|ten pounds, to be recovered with costs in any court of record, one half thereof to the person suing for the same, and the other to the person to whom such copy ought to have been delivered. It shall be lawful for any justice of the peace to commit to the gaol of his county, any emancipated slave travelling out of the county of his or her residence without a copy of the instrument of his or her emancipation, there to remain till such copy is produced and the gaoler's fees paid.||and on the slave travelling out of his county.|
|III. And be it further enacted, That in case any slave so liberated shall neglect in any year to pay all taxes and levies imposed or to be imposed by law, the court of the county shall order the sheriff to hire out him or her for so long time as will raise the said taxes and levies. Provided sufficient distress cannot be made upon his or her estate. Saving nevertheless to all and every person and persons, bodies politic or corporate, and their heirs and successors, other than the person or persons claiming under those so emancipating their slaves, all such right and title as they or any of them could or might claim if this act had never been made.|| Liberated slave neglecting to pay levies and taxes to be hired
out to raise them. |
Saving the titles of all but the person emancipating.
An act to ascertain the number of people within this commonwealth.
| [Ch. LXII in original.]|
[Continued by May 1783 ch. 4.]
|I. WHEREAS congress have recommended it to the several states to ascertain the number of people therein;||Preamble.|
|II. Be it therefore enacted, That the court of each county within this commonwealth shall divide the same into convenient precincts, and on or before the first day of October next appoint one of the justices for each precinct to take a list of the number of people, both white and black, therein: Every justice so apointed shall give public notice at what place or places he intends to receive the lists, by advertising the same at the most public places within his precinct, and shall, on or before the twentieth of October next following,||Census of people of commonwealth, how taken.|
|deliver to the clerk of the county court a fair list of the number of white and black persons in each family within his precinct, stating the number of whites and blacks separately; from which lists so delivered in, the clerk shall make out a fair copy, and deliver the same to the governor in council, on or before the tenth day of December; and the said clerk shall be allowed for his services herein, such a sum of money as the court of the said county shall think reasonable, to be levied in their next county levy. Every master or owner of a family or in his or her absence or non-residence at the plantation, his or her agent, attorney or overseer, neglecting or failing to deliver or cause to be delivered to the justice appointed for that precinct, a list of the number of the white and the number of black persons abiding in or belonging to his or her family, before the said twentieth day of October, shall forfeit and pay one thousand pounds of tobacco, to be recovered with costs by information in the court of the county where such neglect or failure may be, and applied towards lessening the county levy. Every justice or clerk of a court refusing or failing to perform the duties respectively required of him by this act, shall forfeit and pay five thousand pounds of tobacco, to be recovered and applied in like manner as is herein before directed in the case of other forfeitures.|
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