JOINT RESOLUTION proposing amendments to the Constitutions of the State of Alabama.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, Two thirds of both houses of the General Assembly concurring, that the following amendments to the Constitutions of the state of Alabama, be proposed to the people of said state, which, when agreed to by a majority of the citizens thereof, voting for representatives, and ratified by two thirds of both Houses of the next General Assembly, voting by yeas and nays, shall be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the constitution of the state of Alabama, to wit: Strike out so much of the thirteenth section of fifth article, as refers to the election of Judges of the state, during good behaviour, and insert in lieu thereof, the following, to wit: The Judges of the several courts in this state shall be elected for, and during the term of seven years, and for wilful neglect of duty, or other reasonable cause, which shall not be sufficient grounds for 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 entered in the Journals of each House: and Provided further, that the cause or causes shall be notified to the Judge so intended to be removed, and shall be admitted to a hearing in his own defence, before any vote for such address shall pass; and in all such cases, the votes shall be taken by yeas and nays, and entered on the Journals of each House respectively.
Immediately after the ratification of these amendments, the Judges then in office shall be divided by lot, as equally as may be, into seven classes the commissions of the Judges of the first class shall be vacated at the expiration of the first session of the General Assembly thereafter of the second class at the expiration of the second session; of the third class, at the expiration of the third session; of the fourth class, at the expiration of the fourth session: of the fifth class, at the expiration of the fifth session: of the sixth class, at the expiration of the seventh session: so that one class may be chosen at eve-
ry session of the General Assembly after such classification. And if vacancies happen by resignation or otherwise, during the recess of the legislature, the Executive may make temporary appointments, until the next meeting of the General Assembly, which shall then fill such vacancies. And if the Legislature shall establish a separate Supreme Court, the Judges, immediately after the first election, shall be divided by lot, as equally as may be, into three classes: the commissions of the Judges of the first class, shall be vacated at the expiration of the third session of the General Assembly thereafter: of the second class, at the expiration of the fifth session: and of the third class, at the expiration of the seventh session: so that one class may be chosen at every third, fifth, and seventh session of the General Assembly, after such classification.
And be it further resolved, That if, on the ratification of the foregoing amendments, there should not be more than six Judicial circuits in this state, the Judges of said Courts shall be; as nearly as may be, classed in conformity with the foregoing resolutions, so that not more than one Judge, shall be elected at any one session of the General Assembly.
JOINT RESOLUTION concerning of the Furniture of both Houses of the General Assembly.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, That Levin Powell Esq. be and he is hereby authorised and requested, on the part of the State; to contract, for the safe keeping and preservation of the public furniture of both Houses of the General Assembly, until the meeting of the next Session of the Legislature Provided the cost thereof shall not exceed fifty dollars.
JOINT RESOLUTION authorizing a further investment of University funds.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, That the President of the board of Trustees of the University be, and he is hereby required to vest in the stock of the State upon the same terms as the stock has heretofore been vested, the amount of capital, belonging to the University, which is now in the Treasury, or which may be received during the present year.
JOINT RESOLUTION declaring the expiration of the Office of the present Trustees of the University of the State of Alabama.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, That the office of the present Trustees of the University of the State of Alabama who are now in office shall expire from and after the passage of this Resolution, and the Trustees to be elected at the present session of the Legislature shall continue in office for the term of three years and no longer: and all Trustees thereafter to be elected shall continue in office for the like
period: And all appointments to fill vacancies shall expire at the time of the next periodical election for Trustees.
And be it further resolved, That the third and fourth section of an act entitled an act to repeal in part and amend an act entitled an act supplementary to an act to establish a State University. passed Dec. twenty-fourth eighteen hundred and twenty-two so far as relates to the election of six additional Trustees to reside within fifty miles of the site selected, be and the same is hereby repealed.
JOINT RESOLUTION authorising the Governor to order the Quarter Master General of this State, to deliver a field piece to the Artillery Company at Claiborne and or other purposes.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That his Excellency the Governor be, and he is hereby required, to cause one of the field pieces with the necessary equipage or ordered by him for the use of this State, under the act of Congress, to be delivered to the commanding officer of the artillery company at Claiborne in Monroe county, so soon as the said field pieces may be received: Provided that the commanding officer of said company, shall enter into bond with good and sufficient security in such sum as he may require, to keep the said field piece in good order and to return the same whenever he may be required to return the same.
And be it further resolved, That it shall be the duty of the Governor, to cause sixty artillery sabres to be delivered to the said company so soon as a bond shall have been executed. for the same, in the same manner as prescribed in the first section of this resolution.
And be it further resolved, That it shall be the duty of the Governor to cause eighty sabres and eighty pistols to be delivered to the thirty-third Regiment and first Brigade of infantry in this State, so soon as bond shall have been executed for the same, in the same manner as aforesaid in the first section of this resolution.
And be it further resolved, That the Governor be and he is hereby authorised and required, to furnish Capt. Blacks Artillery Company of Greensborough in the county of Green with a field piece, he giving such security as is required in the first section os this resolution from Captain Charles Foster.
JOINT RESOLUTION, to provide a house for the accommodation of the next General Assembly.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That the commissioners for superintending the erection of the State Captiol be, and they are hereby authorised to provide a house in which the next General Assembly may hold its session, at their discretion, upon being satisfied that the State Capitol will not be in sufficient forwardness for their accommodation.
JOINT RESOLUTION in relation to the Cherokee boundary.
WHEREAS by the second article of the Treaty of Turkey-
town with the Cherokee nation dated fourth of October eighteen hundred and sixteen; the boundary line between the United States and the said Cherokee Nation was agreed and established, to begin on the South side of Tennessee River, at Camp Coffee opposite to the Chickasaw Island, and to run from that point due South to the dividing ridge between the waters of Tennessee and Tombecbee Rivers-Thence Eastwardly along said dividing Ridge &c. &c. and Whereas, the line as run by the Surveyor appointed for that purpose, does not run a due South course from the beginning as required by the said second article, but on the contrary runs considerably West of South as appears from the fact of its crossing the basis Meridion of the Huntsville District and not running parallel with it as it should have done, by which departure from a due South course some valuable land is left in the Nation which of right ought to be in the County of Morgan in the State of Alabama.
Wherefore be it Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Representatives requested to adopt such measures as may be calculated to have said line correctly run, either by application to the President, or Congress as to them may seem proper.
JOINT RESOLUTION requiring the Comptroller of Public accounts to furnish the Tax-collectors and county court clerks with a certified copy of the revenue laws of this State.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That herafter it shall be the duty of the Comptroller of Public accounts, immediately after the adjournment of the General Assembly in each and every year, to have the revenue law printed, and a copy certified by the Secretary of State, and one sent to each of the Tax-collectors and Clerks of the county courts in the several counties in this State.
JOINT RESOLUTION instructing his Excellency the Governor to cause the remains of the late Isreal Pickens to be removed from the Island of Cuba to his late residence in Greene county.
WHEREAS the public manifestation of a lively and lasting regard for the memory of illustrious citizens, distinguished for public services, wisdom, virtue and patriotism, forms the strongest incentives to noble and virtuous actions, ardent persuit of honorable fame and love of county. The death of our distinguished fellow citizen Israel Pickens, late Governor, of Alabama, which occured in the Island of Cuba on the twenty-fourth day of April eighteen hundred and twenty-seven, affords to the General Assembly of this State an opportunity of providing for the removal of his remains to his late residence in Greene County, and thereby of manifesting to the world the high estimation in which they, in common with the citizens they have the honor to represent, entertain for his character and public services, rendered justly dear to Alabama by an able and zealous devotion to their best interests in the high
and important offices which he has filled, with honor to himself and honor to his country.
Be it therefore resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That his Excellency the Governor be directed to cause the remains of Isreal Pickens to be removed from the Island of Cuba to his late residence in Green County, and that five hundred dollars be appropriated therefore.
Joint Resolution in relation to an exchange of Sixteenth Sections.
WHEREAS it is enacted by the act providing for the admission of this State into the union that the Sections number Sixteen in every Township, shall be granted to the inhabitants of such Township for the use of Schools: and whereas many of the Sections so granted, in some of the counties in this State are utterly barren and unproductive so that the beneficient intentions of Congress will fail of their intended effects unless some relief be afforded, Therefore,
Resolved by the Senate and House or Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Representatives requested, to use their best endeavors to obtain the passage of an act, authorising the inhabitants of the several Townships in this State, wherein the Sections numbered Sixteen (granted for the use of Schools) is barren and unproductive, to relinquish the same and enter in lieu thereof, with the Register of the Land Office for the proper District, another Section of Land, which shall have been offered for sale previously to the first day of January one thousand eight hundred and twenty-eight and remains unsold, and subject to entry: and that in such Townships (in which said section numbered Sixteen may be barren and unproductive) as at present contain no inhabitants, the legally constituted authorities of the county in which such Township or Townships may be situated, be authorised to make such entry, and to apply the emoluments arising from said section numbered Sixteen to the support of Schools in said county, until such Townships shall become populated.
And be it further resolved, That His Excellency the Governor be, and he is hereby required to transmit a copy of the foregoing preamble and resolution to each of our Senators and Representatives in Congress.
JOINT MEMORIAL to Congress on the subject of Public Lands.
To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress Assembled.
The General Assembly of Alabama feel constrained by the dictate of duty again to present their views to Congress on the subject of the Public Lands in this State.- It is with great deference that your Memorialists submit to the consideration of Congress, the propriety of selling to the State the whole of the public lands within our boundaries for such price and upon such terms and conditions as may be agreed on by the parties---Many considerations would render such on arrangement desirable if suitable terms can be obtained-In the first place it is a public inconvenience of no small magnitude for the citizens of this State to have the muniments of their titles, at so great a distance as Washington-If titles emi-
grated from the Senate, the loss of a Patent could be supplied by a copy frm the proper office at home instead of Washington City-The convenience of obtaining titles would be greatly increased, and the United states had better have one account with the State that the trouble of dealing with Individual purchasers-The idea of a purchase however is founded on the liberality of Congress in adjusting the terms for if the State is to give the full value, the arrangement of course would not be desired-Your Memorialists rely on the liberality of Congress and on that reliance rest the proposition to purchase, connected with this subject your Memorialists beg leave to represent that nature has furnished objects of Internal Improvements of great magnitude, to which the enterprize of the State must be shortly called-Feeling a laudable wish to participate in the great efforts of Internal Improvements that so emminently distinguish the present age your Memorialists finding the means of the State inadequate to the objects look with confidence in the General Government for assistance in some shape and the sale of the public domain at a low price seems to be the most suitable means to effect an object so desirable to all-The Muscle Shoals and Colberts Shoals in the Tennessee river present obstructions to the navigation of that stream, that requires a canal or a rail-way for the distance of perhaps thirty-miles-The immense extent of country to be connected by that improvement at one bespeaks its importance and stamps it with a national character-It is emphatically a link of great importance in the chair of defence projected by the government-The transportation of troops munitions of war &c. as well as the commerce that would necessarily flow thro' that vien if properly opened point out claims to the united exertions of the General And State Governments.---The connection of the navigable waters of the Tennessee River and the Mobile Bay by a canal or Railway is another object worthy of national exertion.- The great Erie Canal shows how far the beneficial effects of opening these rivers of internal communication surpass the calculations of the most sanguine-The projected canals in Ohio once finished and the obstructions of the Tennessee river removed and a rail-way constructed between the Steam-boat navigation of that stream and the Alabama or some of its tributaries and a back country will at once be opened of such extent and fertility as to raise our infant seaport into rapid and respectable commercial importance and reflect the greatest and most permanent benefits on the county at large-These difficulties though great, are not beyond human powers-they are truly beyond the unaided means of Alabama at this early period of her existence: but if the generous assistance of the United States can be commanded, success will be rendered certain. When the United States wee in the germ of existence, and weighed down by the debts of the revolutionary war, the states, with patriotic generosity, extended a helping hand-the revenue from foreign commerce was surrendered by the states, and in addition to that ample resource, several of the states surrendered a large portion of their public domain. On these pillars, the genius of the immortal Hamilton erected the fabric of public credit; under the influence of the system projected by him, and adopted by his contemporaries, the public debt is annually diminishing by the action of the sinking fund-the public domain is no longer necessary to preserve the credit of the General Government-the receipts from commerce will be more than ample to defray the expenses of the civil list, and extinguish the public debt in the lapse of a few years-a large surplus will be left at the disposal of Congress, and the mode of its employ-
ment must become a matter of the deepest concern to the states and the people. That the surplus shall be dormant in the Treasury, is neither to be wished or expected. Governments likewise, will spend money according to their means-common opinion looks to the application of the surplus funds of the government, to the purposes of internal improvement and general education---this must be done, if at all, under the direction and management of the general, or state governments. Many considerations that need not be now mentioned, lead to the anticipation of happier results, by the application of the means under the executive direction of the state authorities, than can be expected under the direction of the General Government: so far as education is concerned, it is obvious that the control belongs to the state governments and it is believed that all the objects of internal importance, can be effected by supplying the states with the means much more to the satisfaction and benefit of the people, than by asserting a controverted power in the General Government, to operate even for public good within the states, without their consent. As the united States were sustained and aided by the liberality of the states in the hour of need, and the means then furnished, have been found much more than sufficient to effect the objects of concession, and the states in turn, need the assistance of the general government to enable them to effect objects of the greatest utility to the present and future ages: it is confidently believed that Congress will promptly accord the aid so necessary to the fame and prosperity of the states. The sums given by the United States to Georgia and the Indians for the lands included in Alabama, it is believed have already been more than reimbursed by the sales already made; so that the unsold lands in our limits have cost the United States nothing. Allowing due weight to all these considerations, your Memorialists indulge a hope that the proposition to purchase the public domain, will meet with a favorable consideration by Congress, and that it will be sold upon terms that will enable the state to realize a profit on selling it out to the citizens, sufficient in amount with the other resources at our command, to accomplish the great objects of internal improvement herein mentioned, and so necessary to the prosperity and greatness of the state, and so beneficial to the present and future generations. We repeat, that the purchase of the whole of the public domain in this state upon suitable terms, would be the most desirable means of accomplishing the great object in view: as to terms, it can only be now said, that the meas of payment must arise out of the sale of the lands, as payment cannot be otherwise made. Should the proposal to purchase be considered inadmissible or inexpedient by Congress, your Memorialists be leave to urge the claims of the state of a suitable donation in lands, to aid the state in carrying on the important improvements before mentioned; and more especially the Muscle Shoals, and other obstructions in the Tennessee river. The practicability of that improvement is no longer doubtful, and your Memorialists cherish a hope, that the Engineers of the United States will be instructed, in the course of the ensuing season, to make a more detailed survey, with a view to located the Route, and determine the character and cost of the improvement-and whether a canal or railway will be most advisable-and that a suitable donation in lands will be made to the state, for the purpose of effecting an object so desirable. While upon this subject, your Memorialists beg leave to state, that it is doubted by some, whether the state would be authorised to
charge a toll or duty on boats and other craft, after improving the navigation of the Tennessee river, on account of the stipulation on our admission to the union, that our navigable streams should continue public highways, free for the passage of all the citizens of the United States: and as such doubts are calculated to dissuade the timid from embarking in the removal of obstructions, we respectfully pray that said stipulation may be so explained, as to allow a reasonable toll be charged, whenever valuable improvements shall be made in any of our navigable bays and rivers, either by canal, or the removal of obstructions from the channel, at great expense.
In whatever way it may be the pleasure of Congress to grant us aid in promoting our views: the funds will be faithfully applied to the object for which they may be granted. The liberal aid afforded to the northwestern states for similar purposes; assures us that our application will meet with similar success. We cannot close this communication without presenting the condition of may of the purchasers of public land in the state, to the favorable consideration of Congress. Many have been prevented by accident, from availing themselves of the laws heretofore passed for their relief, and incurred forfeitures in the course of the present year; after having paid all but the last instalment, and made valuable improvements on the land:--- some, by omitting to notice the time limited for final payment; and many, from inability to raise the means of payment; owing the joint operation of two causes beyond their control. Unusual droughts have prevailed for two successive seasons in many parts of the state, reducing the produce of the soil nearly or quite one half, and the unexpected and unparallelled reduction in the price of the staple commodity. Forfeitures thus incurred, by a people struggling with adversity, cannot be retained by a just government-further time must be allowed them to make payment, or they must be ruined, One of the Banks in this state has failed in the course of the present year, which has augmented the public distress, and diminished the means of payment. There is another class of citizens entitled to the favorable consideration of Congress- they have been urged by the necessities of the times, to sell the certificate of purchase for their homes improved by their labor, and run the hazard of repurchasing: they continue to cultivate the soil, and support the government. The law that passed the Senate at the last session, proposed to give the person making the relinquishment, or the legal holder of the certificate, a pre-emption right to the land from which the certificate had been withdrawn-such a provision would operate most unfairly. In many instances, the certificate was sold for half the sum that had been paid on it, or less: not with a view to own the soil it covered, but with the express view of relinquishing it in payment for other lands. Under such circumstances, to give a pre-emption right to the persons making the relinquishment, would give what he never bought, or expected to own; and would be giving a boon without regard to merit, at the expense of the cultivator whose necessities had driven him into the measure of selling his certificate- we repeat, that under such circumstances the cultivator is the meritorious man, and should have the right of pre-emption. It must be apparent that the purchase of a certificate, in order to relinquish it in payment for other land, changes that inceptive muniment of title, into a kind of quasi currency, receivable in payment of debts, and dissolves all connection between the title and the soil it covered. When possession has be left and remained
with the seller, and he has continued to improve and cultivate the soil, surely the man who has already obtained by a relinquishment, all the benefits he expected under his contract, ought not to be allowed a preference in acquiring a new title to the soil. Your memorialists beg leave further to represent, that many of the sixteenth sections allowed for the use of schools are of no value, and they persuade themselves that Congress cannot attach any magic to the particular number of the section, but on the contrary will be disposed to give the munficence of the government a practical operation, by allowing other land to be selected where the sixteenth sections are of little or no value.
Your memorialists beg leave to call the attention of Congress, to the views submitted in eighteen hundred and twenty five, on the subject of classifying and graduating the public lands, and allow them to be entered instead of offering them for sale at auction and reducing the price from time to time, until all the lands fit for cultivation shall be sold, and become liable to taxation, and contribute to the support of government. Presuming that memorial is on file, we forbear to repeat the reasons then submitted in favor of the change proposed, but beg leave to refer to the same. There is another subject which with due respect, your Memorialists beg leave to present to the favorable consideration of Congress we have some valuable seats for iron works, surrounded by large bodies of poor land, suitable for fuel, but totally unfit for cultivation; The minimum price of public lands as applied to the poor land in question, is unjust; and inasmuch as the state has no means of encouraging the manufacture of an article so necessary, it is respectfully requested, that the United States would allow from masters to enter a reasonable quantity of poor land unfit for cultivation, at a price so low, as to afford the desired encouragement.
Resolved, That our Senators be instructed, and our Representatives requested, to use their best endeavors to procure the relief contemplated by this Memorial.
And be it further resolved, That the Governor transmit a Copy of the foregoing Memorial to our Senators in Congress, and another to our Representatives.
JOINT RESOLUTION proposing amendments to the Constitution of the United States.
The select committee to which was referred the Preamble and Resolutions of the General Assembly of the State of Ohio when acting upon a communication from the Governor of the State of Georgia and a Resolution of the Senate of said State, recommending an amendment of the Constitutions of the United States have had said Resolution under consideration and ask leave to report: That they concur with the General Assembly of the State of Ohio that innovations on the Constitutional laws of a community ought to be cautiously made-They believe that political wisdom matured by experience forbids any innovation unless called for by some palpable defect. But your committee are of opinion that the Constitution of the United States palpably defective in giving the election of President in any event to the House of Representatives in Congress, because an improper exercise of that power may result in the election of a President opposed to the choice of the people, which is incompatible with the spirit of a republican Government, and ought to be avoided when practicable-Your committee would therefore recommend that the constitution of the United States be so amended as to give the election
if President and vice President directly to the people, in such manner as to preserve equality of rights throughout the different States of the Union and to effect that end, do recommend the adoption of the following resolution.
Be it resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama in General Assembly convened, That our Senators in Congress be instructed, and our Representatives requested to endeavour to procure such amendment of the Constitution of the United States as will provide for the election of the President and Vice President of the United States by a direct vote of the people, and prevent the election from devolving on the House of Representatives in any event: Provided, such amendment can be obtained without changing the present scale of voting for those officers, between the several States of the Union. And be it further Resolved, That his Excellency the Governor be requested to forward a copy of the foregoing preamble and resolution to each of our Senators and Representatives in Congress and the Governor's of the several States.
JOINT MEMORIAL to the Congress of the United States asking permission for the Trustees of the University of Alabama to select other lands in lieu of those herein mentioned.
The Memorial of the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, Respectfully represents that section----- containing six hundred and thirty eight and eighty-four hundredths of an acre; the north east quarter of section seventeen containing one hundred & fifty-nine and eleven hundredths of an acre; the northeast quarter of section twenty-eight containing one hundred and fifty eight and eighty one hundredths of an acre; and the east part of the north east quarter of section thirty-four containing one hundred and six and twelve hundredth's of an acre in Township four, Range eleven West in the Huntsville land District, patented to the Trustees of the University of Alabama on the 16th day of July eighteen hundred and twenty-four have been subsequently sold by the United States to individuals who are now in peaceable possession thereof and have made considerable and valuable inprovements thereon. In order that the quite of innocent and bonafide purchasers should not be disturbed; and believing that a selection of other lands could be made equally beneficial; Your memorialists respectfully submit to your Honorable body the propriety of passing a law granting permission to the said Trustees of the University of the State of Alabama to make a selection of other lands in lieu thereof; giving said Trustees of eh University aforesaid the power of selecting any lands which have been forfeited, reverted or relinquished to the United States at any of the land offices in this State in lieu of the above described lands: Provided, they include in such selection in one tract or body: Provided also that they shall have the power to select in quarter sections, where the land has not been relinquished.
Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama, in General Assembly convened, That our Senators in Congress be instructed and our Representatives requested to use their efforts to obtain the passage of a law in conformity with the foregoing Memorial.
Be it further Resolved: That his Excellency the Governor be requested to transmit to our Senators and Representatives in Congress a copy of the foregoing Memorial and resolutions.