The Senate met pursuant to adjournment. Mr. Barton from the committee on the Judiciary, submitted the follow Report- The committee on the Judiciary to which was referred the memorial of Wm. M. Marr, have had the same under consideration and have instructed me to submit, the following report:- The petition prays the passage of a law authorizing one or more of the Judges of the circuit courts to examine the act of Congress, granting to this State certain lands for the support of a Seminary of learning and decide at what time the State derived a legal Title to sections 23 and 26 in township 21 Range 10. west; and whether the right so derived, authorized the state to dispossess the petitioner of his occupancy of those sections, and that if the said Judge or Judges shall decide that the petitioner was illegally dispossessed of the said sections then to refund the amount paid by him to the Trustees of the University for rent of the same during the interval between the selection of the said lands by the Executive and the confirmation of such selection by the Secretary of the Treasury. By the act of Congress, to enable the people of the Alabama Territory to form a constitution and state Government &c. thirty six sections or one entire Township, to be designated by the secretary of the Treasury, under the directions of the President of the United States, together with the one heretofore reserved for that purpose, were reserved for the use of a seminary of learning and vested in the Legislature of the state to be appropriated solely to the use of such seminary by the Legislature, and the secretary of the Treasury under the direction as aforesaid, was authorized to reserve the seventy two sections or two Townships, thereby set apart for the support of a seminary of learning in small tracts of not less than two sections. In pursuance of instructions from the secretary of the Treasury dated 2nd December 1819 the Register of the land office was directed to reserve from sale
such section as the then governor Wm. W. Bibb might select for the use and endowment of a College; and under those instructions numerous tracts of land were reserved from sale and selected as part of the complement of seventy two sections, a list whereof was transmitted to the secretary of the Treasury and a copy thereof retained in the Executive Office. Among the tracts designated as first selected was the land leased to the petitioner- The 10th section of an act, to provide for leasing for a limited time the lands reserved by Congress for the support of schools and for a seminary of learning, authorized the Governor to appoint commissioners to lease the same and take bonds for the rent. Pursuant, to this act the lands selected for the University were generally leased throughout the state and among these were the two sections for the rent of which the petitioner claims relief. From a communication made by the Board of Trustees to the Legislature at the session before last upon the subject of this claim it appears that the amount for which the University lands rented in the years 1820 and 1821 was in all, not much short of ten thousand dollars. In the case of Mr. Marrs' lease the Trustees are unapprised of any thing which should distinguish his case from all other cases. He does not pretend that he had not the full enjoyment of his term agreeably to the stipulation. The tract leased to him was among the earliest selections made by the state and was reserved from the sale of lands at Tuscaloosa at the first sale there in 1821 by directions from the Treasury department, should the Legislature in its wisdom grant relief to the present applicant, a similar relief will be due to numerous others who will of course on equal grounds apply It does not appear that any of the selections of University lands had been perfected by the issuance of Patents before the session of 1824- but this circumstance cannot in the opinion of the committee, affect the legality of the title to those lands which the state derived under the act of Congress aforesaid- The period of selection, your committee believe must be regarded as the point of time at which the titled vested, and not the date of confirmation of that selection- That confirmation might have been unreasonably delayed or entirely withheld without justifiable cause, and the event shows that upwards of four years have elapsed between the first selections and the final delivery of the Patents- The committee are clear in the opinion that the act of Congress, granting the donation vested an absolute title in the state to the lands selected in conformity with the directions of the secretary of the Treasury from the moment of the actual selection thereof; which could only have been divested by a departure from those directions, in the only particular in which these were essential to wit:- the mode of selection. But even in the committee had a doubt of the legality of the title in question, they can entertain none of the total insufficiency of the claim set up by the petitioner- He could only have been regarded in the light of an unauthorized settler upon the public lands without title, or right of possession, and of course subject to be removed at any time by the Marshal or by military force at the discretion of the President of the United States. Your committee are therefore decidedly of the opinion that the claim of the petitioner is not founded in their in Justice or equity and that his prayer is unreasonable & ought not be granted.' to which Report was concurred in.
Mr. Casey from the committee on the apportionment to which was referred a bill to be entitled, an act, to apportion the Representatives among the several counties in this State and to divide the state into senatorial districts according to the late census, reported the same as amended by the striking out the second section and inserting in lieu thereof the following.
SEC. 2. And be it further enacted, that the counties of Mobile, Baldwin and Washington, shall form one senatorial district- Pike, Covington, Dale and Henry, one; Butler and Conecuh, one, Monroe and Clarke, one; Wilcox and Marengo, one; Greene one; Montgomery one; Dallas one, Perry and Bibb one; Shelby and Autauga one; Blount and St. Clair one; Jefferson and Walker one; Tuscaloosa one; Pickens, Fayette and Marion, one; Morgan one; Franklin one; Lawrence one; Lauderdale one; Limestone one; Madison one; and Jackson one; each of which districts shall have one senator and no more- Mr. Jackson moved to amend the amendment by striking out Clarke and Monroe as a senatorial district and "Marengo and Wilcox" and to insert Monroe and Wilcox, as a district and Clarke and Marengo as another; which was lost:- Yeas 8 Nays 12. The Yeas and Nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Barton, Brown, Crabb, Earle, Jackson, Merriwether and Powell. Those who voted in the negative are messrs. Ashe, Casey, Evans, Hubbard, Irwin, Jones, McCamy, Miller, Moore Shackleford, Skinner and Sullivan.
Mr. Casey, moved to disagree to the report of the committee on the apportionment proposing to strike out the second section of the bill and to insert the above section in lieu thereof; which was carried- Yeas 12 Nays 8- The Yeas and Nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are messrs. Ashe, Barton, Casey, Earle, Evans, Irwin, Jones, McCamy, Miller, Shackleford, Skinner, and Sullivan. Those who voted in the negative are Mr. President, Brown, Crabb, Hubbard, Jackson, Merriwether, Moore, and Powell.
Mr. Evans moved to amend the bill by the striking out the word 'two' where it gives the county of Butler two Representatives, and to insert the word 'one' with a view of allowing two representatives to the county of Wilcox instead of Butler, which was carried, Yeas 12, Nays 7. The Yeas and Nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Ash, Casey, Evans, Hubbard, McCamy, Merriwether, Miller, Moore, Powell, Skinner and Sullivan.
Those who voted in the negative, are messrs. Barton, Crabb, Earle, Irwin, Jackson, Jones and Shackleford.
Mr. Evans, moved further to amend the bill by striking out the word one where it allows Wilcox one representative and to insert two; which was carried- Yeas 14.- Nays 5. The Yeas Nays, being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Ashe, Barton, Casey, Evans, Hubbard, Irwin, McCamy, Merriwether, Miller, Moore, Shackleford, Skinner and Sullivan. Those who voted in the negative are messrs. Crabb, Earle, Jackson, Jones and Powell. The bill was further amended by making the sheriff of Fayette county the returning officer for the district in which he resides instead of the sheriff of Pickens.
Mr. Crabb, moved further to amend the bill by adding Blount and Morgan together as a senatorial district, Franklin and Walker as another & Jefferson and St. Clair as one; which was lost, Yeas 7.- Nays 12. The Yeas and Nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are messrs crabb, Earle, Hubbard, Jackson, Merriwether, Powell and Skinner-- Those who voted in the negative are Mr. President Ash, Barton, Casey, Evans, Irwin, Jones, McCamy, Miller, Moore, Shackleford and Sullivan.
Ordered, that the bill be made the order of the day for a third reading to-morrow.
The following communication was received from the Governor by J. I. Thornton Esq.
The Hon. the President and members of the Senate:
Gentlemen- This morning I had the pleasure to receive the Resolution of your Honorable body which is expressed in the following words viz.
Resolved, That his Excellency the Governor be requested to furnish this House such information as he may have in possession respecting the necessity of making the appointment on a third commissioner to adjust the boundary line between this State and Georgia and by what authority he made said appointment together with his Excellencys reasons for making such appointment. In compliance with this Resolution, I have the honor to send you the letters of the commissioners, and a letter of this Department, which will give a history of the transaction, and will serve to shew the necessity and the reasons, as well as to explain the nature of the appointment which was made. There was not in fact, any appointment of a third commissioner, as will be seen by reference to a letter from this department dated the 18th July 1826. One of the commissioners was absent from causes at that time unknown. This absence was announced by the attending commissioner in sundry letters and especially in those of the 10th, and 11th of July, forwarded to the seat of Government by Express. The commissioners of Georgia were in attendance, with an ample and expensive train of preparations and were therefore anxious to commence the work. The Government of Georgia was always reluctant to admit delay on this subject. The commission of this State was not full.- The cause of absence of one of the commissioners as has been already observed, was unknown to the attending commissioner and to this department, and great uncertainty seemed to rest on his ultimate ability to attend at all.- In case that he should not be able to attend, the whole negotiation would fail by default on the part of this State, and Georgia would be obliged to run the line alone, or to wait until the executive of this State would fill up the commission. Georgia had already delayed the operation to meet the views of this State and it would be unreasonable to occasion more delay- In this state of difficulty and uncertainty, which were much felt and regretted at the time and impelled by duty to pursue a course which was due to a sister State it was thought the best and indeed the only consistent way to send on some competent Gentleman who should act as commissioner in case of the continued non attendance of the absent commissioner, but who, if the absent commissioner should attend, might act as agent or counsel in the business, and not as one of the commissioners. The Executive felt himself forced by circumstances to make this contingent arrangement, and looked for his justification to the powers vested in him and the duty imposed on him, to execute the laws. It will also be easily seen that it was a delicate thing to request any competent man to act in a capacity which might prove to be so subordinate, especially in a service having so little attraction, and to be entered upon without previous knowledge or preparation. Still, however, this was done, and in the application which the Executive made he relied on the known patriotism and public spirit of the individual and sought an excuse for his making such a proposition, no less in the liberal indulgence of personal friendship than in the pressing exigency of an important public service- In this way, every proper and practicable provision was made, to prevent a failure of long continuance on the part of this
State.- As the question in controversy arose from the construction of a compact, acknowledged legal talents were employed or indeed more properly speaking enlisted, which might prove useful as a mere assistant counsel to the original commission, if fortunately it should be full or in the contrary event a good and efficient commissioner in the place of one absent, who was selected on account of similar qualifications.- The commissioners of Georgia were five in number, and if it should happen, in providing for an unavoidable occurrence that our commission of two, should have an assistant counsel (but which was by no means the intention of the appointment) it would seem to be a circumstance not much to be regretted; with the foregoing remarks, the letters of the commissioners will furnish the 'reasons' and the 'necessity' of making such a contingent arrangement as was made. The most studious delicacy was observed toward the original appointment, but it would have been exceedingly faulty and without excuse not to have provided for a state of things, by which an important negotiation might fail and at the same time, that the State should be found wanting in courtesy and justice to a sister State in the transaction of a common business.- The resolution further enquires by what authority the appointment was made? The answer is, the general authority, as well as duty imposed by the constitution to execute the laws; and the special authority of the Resolution under which the Executive was required to act.- The Resolution authorizes the Executive to appoint two commissioners, and the general power of appointing these agents is confided to him- should any of the commissioners so appointed die or remove, or refuse to serve, or be unable to attend, or be absent, or if any circumstance should happen to them which might threaten the negotiation with total failure, and subject it to great disadvantage, the Executive could not hesitate to apply the proper remedy as authorized by the constitution and the Resolution itself, understood in its most natural and inevitable import.- In the present instance it was the constant object to preserve the rights and even the feelings of all concerned, as far as it could possibly be done in consistence with the public service.
Letters were received by the Executive from the absent commissioner about the 19th or 20th, of August at Huntsville.- The agent was still sent on and the letters of the 19th, and 21st, of July and the 13th of August will furnish the reason of doing so. It was to guard still against the consequences of ill health; and it was necessary also to forward money to defray expenses, which through the polite interposition of some friends I was enabled to procure at Huntsville- Money was advanced to the commissioners, and to the agent from the contingent fund to defray expenses, until the General Assembly should pass upon the entire amount of their service, and make an appropriation; which advances were then to be repaid into the contingent fund. This has been done by the commissioners from the apportionments made in their favour.- In the case of the agent the appropriation made fell short of the advance.- The appropriation was retained as so much paid into the contingent fund for the advance and the balance settled by the personal check of the Executive, which will operate as a final closing of the account unless the wisdom of the General Assembly may deem it just and equitable to increase the appropriation.
I have the honor to be, most respectfully, your ob't serv't.
Ordered, that the communication together with the accompanying docu-
ments be referred to the special committee appointed to examine and report on the bill entitled, an act to amend the 3d section of an act to compensate the commissioners appointed by the Governor for ascertaining and marking the permanent boundary line between this State and Georgia.
Mr. Casey moved to reconsider the vote of the Senate on Mr. Crabbs motion to lay the bill entitled, an act to establish an office of Discount & Deposit of the Bank of the State of Alabama in the northern part of this State, on the table till the 3d Monday in November next; which was carried- Yeas 11, nays 9.
The yeas and nays being desired those who voted in the affirmative are Messrs. Casey, Crabb, Evans, Hubbard, Irwin, McCamy, Miller, Moore, Powell, Skinner, and Sullivan.
Those who voted in the negative are Mr. President, Ashe, Barton, Brown, Earle, Jackson, Jones, Merriwether and Shackleford.
Mr. Hubbard then moved to reconsider the vote of the Senate on the amendment offered by Mr. Crabb to the bill Providing that the office of Discount and Deposit established by the bill shall be located in some Town within seven miles of the Tennessee river, which was carried.-- The amendment was then adopted.
Mr. Crabb moved to reconsider the vote of the Senate on striking from the bill the county of Morgan: which was carried.
Mr. Skinner moved to reconsider the vote on his motion to strike from the bill the county of Franklin which was carried.
Ordered, that the bill be engrossed and made the order of the day for a third reading to-morrow.
Mr. Powell from the Joint committee on enrolled bills reported as correctly enrolled, an act to incorporate the Summerville Philomatheon Society; and an at relative to the duties of grand juries which were accordingly signed by Mr. President.
Mr. Jones moved to take up the Joint Resolutions 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; which was carried.- Yeas 13, nays 7.
The yeas and nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Messrs. Barton, Casey, Crabb, Evans, Hubbard, Irwin, Jones, McCamy, Merriwether, Miller, Moore, Skinner and Sullivan
Those who voted in the negative are Mr. President, Ashe, Brown, Earle, Jackson, Powell and Shackleford.
Ordered, that the Resolutions be referred to a special committee consisting of Messrs.Casey, Hubbard and Merriwether to consider and report thereon.
And then the Senate adjourned till half past 2 o'clock this evening.
A message from the House of Representatives by Mr. Tunstall their clerk.- Mr. President, the House of Representatives concur in the amendments made by the Senate to the bill entitled, an act concerning the estates of deceased persons.-- They disagree to the amendments made by the Senate to the bill entitled, an act altering the punishment of Forgery and Counterfeiting by inserting in the 7th line of the 1st section after the word any the words last will or testament, gold or silver coin made current by law. They also disagree to the amendment made in the 22d line of the 1st section by inserting after the word Counterfeit the word gold or silver coin They concur in the remainder of the amendments to
the bill. They also concur in the amendment made by the Senate to the Joint Resolution proposing amendments to the constitution of the State of Alabama by striking out six years and inserting "seven years" as the term of service of the Judges.
They have read three times and passed bills which originated in their House entitled, an act to authorize the sales of 16th sections and for other purposes; and an act to extend to St. Clair and Shelby Counties concurrent civil and criminal jurisdiction with Autauga County in the Creek Nation.- In which they desire your concurrence.
Ordered, that the Senate insist on their amendments to the bill entitled, an act altering the punishment of Forgery and Counterfeiting in certain cases, to which the House of Representatives have disagreed.
A bill from the House of Representatives entitled, an act to extend to St. Clair and Shelby Counties concurrent civil and criminal jurisdiction with Autauga County in the Creek Nation, was read and ordered to a second reading to-morrow.
A bill to be entitled, an act to authorize the sales of 16th sections, and for other purposes, was read the first time. The rule requiring bills to be read on three several days being dispensed with, the bill was read the second time forthwith and referred to the committee on Schools and Colleges and School and College Lands to consider and report thereon.
Mr. Jackson called up the Annual Report of the Board of Trustees of the University of Alabama. Ordered, that it be referred to the committee on Schools & School & College Lands, to consider and report thereon.
Mr. Jackson obtained leave to introduce a bill to be entitled, an act to continue in force an act entitled, an act to amend the Charter of the Planters and Merchants Bank of Huntsville, which was read.- The rule requiring bills to be read on three several days being dispensed with, the bill was read the second time forthwith and referred to the committee on the Judiciary to consider and report thereon.
Mr. Barton, obtained leave to introduce a bill to be entitled, an act to amend an act, to prohibit the introduction of slaves into this state for sale or hire, which was read and ordered to a second reading tomorrow.
Mr. Shackleford, moved that the resolution prohibiting the introduction of new business be suspended and that he have leave to introduce a bill, which he read, which motion was carried. Yeas 15, Nays 5.- The Yeas & nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Ashe, Barton, Crabb, Earle, Irwin, Jackson, Jones, Merriwether, Miller, Powell, Shackleford, Skinner and Sullivan. Those who voted in the negative are messrs. Casey, Evans, Hubbard, McCamy and Moore.
Mr. Shackleford then introduced a bill to be entitled an act, in relation to the Executive of this state, which was read and ordered to a second reading tomorrow.
Mr. Hubbard moved to reconsider the vote of the senate on ordering the bill entitled, an act, to establish an office of discount and deposit of the Bank of the state of Alabama in the northern part of this state to be engrossed for a third reading tomorrow which was carried-- Ordered that the bill be referred to a special committee consisting of messrs. Hubbard, Miller and Casey to consider and report thereon.
Memorial to the Congress of the United states praying for a donation of the unsold & relinquished lands in the Huntsville land district for the improvement of the navigation of the Tennessee River, was read the second time.
Mr. Jackson, offered an amendment to the memorial requesting the Go-
vernor to forward a copy to each of our senators and Representatives in Congress; which was adopted. Ordered, that it be engrossed for a third reading tomorrow.
A bill to be entitled, an act, to regulate the inspection of Tobacco in this state, was read the first time, and the rule requiring bills to be read on the three several days being dispensed with, the bill was read the second time forthwith, and referred to a special committee consisting of messrs. Barton, Ash and Earle to consider and report thereon:
An engrossed bill to be entitled, an act, for the relief of Richard Corre, John Duncan jr. and Henry Center was read the third time, amended by way of ryder on Mr. Barton's motion and passed- Yeas 11, Nays 9.- The yeas and nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Ash, Barton, Brown, Earle, Evans, Irwin, McCamy Merriwether, Shackleford and Sullivan. Those who voted in the negative are messrs Casey, Crabb, Hubbard, Jackson, Jones, Miller, Moore, Powell and Skinner, Ordered, that the title of the bill be as aforesaid, and that it be sent to the House of Representatives for concurrence.
A bill to be entitled, an act for the relief of William Jones of Walker county was taken up- Mr. Barton withdrew the amendment which he offered to the bill on a former occasion.
Mr. McCamy offered an amendment to the bill providing that Mr. Elliotts descendants shall be entitled to the rights and privileges of citizens of the State; which was adopted Ordered, that the bill made the order of the day for a third reading to-morrow.
An engrossed bill to be entitled, an act to prevent the unlawful assembly of slaves and for other purposes was read the third time and passed, Yeas 11, nays 9. The yeas and nays being desired, those who voted in the affirmative are Mr. President, Ash, Barton, Brown, Earle, Evans, Hubbard, Jackson, Miller, Moore and Sullivan. Those who voted in the negative are messrs. Casey, Irwin, Jones, McCamy, Merriwether, Powell, Shackleford & Skinner. Ordered, that the title of the bill be as aforesaid and that it be sent to the House of Representatives for concurrence.
Engrossed bills entitled, an act, to annex additional Territory to Bibb county so as to make the same constitutional; an act, concerning the registration of Deeds and Patents. an act, to provide for the translation and preservation of the Spanish records of this State; and an act, relating to the duties of the Judges of the county courts, were severally read the third time and passed- Ordered, that the titles of the bills be as aforesaid, and that they be sent to the House of Representatives for their concurrence.
Bills from the House of Representatives entitled, an act incorporating the town of Courtland in the county of Lawrence; an act, to authorize the Judge of the county court of Monroe county and the commissioners of Roads and Revenue to levy a special tax for the purpose therein mentioned; and an act, to provide for the support of Paupers in the counties of Madison, Autauga, Tuscaloosa and Clarke were severally read the third time and passed. Ordered, that they be returned to the House of Representatives.
A bill (from the House of Representatives) entitled, an act, to divorce Winney Gaines from her husband Francis T. Gaines was read the third time and passed by the constitutional majority, Ordered, that the bill be returned to the House.
Bills to be entitled an act, to authorize Josiah D. Lister administrator of the estate of Charles Vivian deceased to settle his accounts in the circuit court of Washington county.
Joint resolution in relation to an exchange of sixteenth section: an act, to amend an act, entitled an act, to incorporate the town of Mooresville and
for other purposes passed Nov. 16th 1818: an act, to authorize the raising of three thousand dollars for the purpose of building a bridge across Shoal Creek; and, Joint Resolution in relation to the Cherokee boundary were severally read the second time and ordered to a third reading to-morrow
Bills to be entitled, an act, for the appointment of an Engineer to make a survey and estimate of the expense of opening the muscle shoals in the Tennessee River: An act, to revive an act, therein specified, and for other purposes: An act, regulating the duties of Attorneys at law, and for other purposes: An act, to provide the clerks of the several county courts in this state with copies of the acts of the present and each succeeding Congress of the United States, and for other purposes: An act to amend an act entitled, an act to incorporate the school commissioners of the 4th Township and 8th Range west from Huntsville, and for other purposes: and An act to declare Canoe Creek in St. Clair county a public highway, were severally read the second time and Ordered: to be engrossed for a third reading tomorrow.
A bill to be entitled, an act to repeal in part and amend an act entitled an act to incorporate the Muscle Shoals Canal Company, was read the second time.
Mr. McCamy moved to strike out the 4th section of the bill which is as follows: SEC. 4. And be it further enacted, That the Proviso in the 18th section of the above recited act be and the same is hereby repealed.
Ordered that the bill be referred to the committee on the Judiciary to consider and report thereon.
A bill (from the House of Representatives) entitled, an act to locate the seat of Justice in the County of Tuskaloosa was read the first time.
On motion of Mr. Powell ordered, that the bill lie on the table.
A bill to be entitled an act for the relief of Wyatt Cheatham was taken up.-- Mr. Powell moved to strike out the second section of the bill; which was lost- ordered, that it be engrossed for a third reading to-morrow.
And then the Senate adjourned till to-morrow morning at 10 o'clock.