The Senate met pursuant to adjournment.
On motion of Mr. Moore the following resolution was adopted: Resolved that a committee of ___members be appointed to prepare and draft rules of decorum and order, for the government of this house.
On motion of Mr. Moore, resolved, that the blank in the above resolution be filled with the number "five," whereupon Messrs Moore, Casey, Garth, Watkins and Hogg were appointed a committee.
Received from the House of Representatives by Mr. Bell, their clerk, a message informing the Senate they had convened; elected Mr. James Dellet, Speaker, J. J. Bell, clerk and Daniel Rather, door-keeper and were ready to proceed to business.
Mr. Moore proposed the adoption of the following resolution which was read and rejected: Resolved, that until rules of order be prepared and adopted for the government of the Senate, that the rules of decorum for the government of the Senate of the state of New York be adopted for the government of this House.
On motion of Mr. Hogg, resolved, that the rules for the government of the senate of the state of New York be read by the Secretary.
On motion of Mr. Sims, resolved, that the resolution moved by Mr. Moore, proposing to adopt the rules of order for the government of the Senate of the state of New York, as rules for the government of this House be reconsidered, when.
On motion of Mr. Moore, the resolution was adopted.
Mr. Robert A . Harwell, senator from the county of Baldwin, appeared and look his seat.
On motion of Mr. Farmer the following resolution was adopted : Resolved, that a committee of two members be appointed on the part of this house to
wait on his Excellency the Governor, together with such members as may be appointed on the part of the House of Representatives, to inform him that the two branches of the General Assembly are organized, and are ready to receive any communications he may think proper to make: whereupon Messrs. Farmer and Casey were appointed a committee on the part of the senate.
On motion, ordered, that a message be sent to the house of representatives, informing them thereof, and asking their concurrence in answer to which a message of concurrence was received from the house of representatives, naming Messrs. Owen and Towns as a committee on their part.
On motion of Mr Garth, the following resolution was adopted, resolved, that the Secretary, under the direction of the President, be authorized to furnish stationary for the use of the Senate.
On motion of Mr Garth, the following resolution was adopted: resolved, that the President assign to Mr . Boardman a seat within the bar of the Senate for the purpose of taking down the proceedings thereof.
Received from the house of representatives a message proposing to meet the senate tomorrow, for the purpose of electing two senators to represent this state in the Congress of the United States: Whereupon Mr Chambers proposed the adoption of the following resolution: resolved, that the senate concur with the house of representatives in meeting in the representatives chamber on tomorrow at 12 o'clock, for the purpose of electing two Senators to the Congress of the United States, which was read and rejected.
On motion of Mr Moore the following resolution was adopted: resolved, that the senate disagree to the resolution of the house of representatives as re-
lates to the day appointed for the election of Senators to the Congress, of the United States, and that they will proceed to the said election on__________at 12 o'clock.
Mr. Moore moved to fill the blank with Friday next, which was rejected.
On motion of Mr. Sims, ordered, that the blank be filled with Thursday, whereupon a message was sent to the house of representatives informing them thereof and asking their concurrence, its answer to which a message of concurrence was received from the house of representatives by Mr. Bell, their clerk.
Mr. Casey from the committee appointed to wait on his Excellency the Governor and inform him that the General Assembly had convened and were ready to receive any communications he might think proper to make, reported they had performed that service and received for answer that he would make his communication in writing this evening at 3 o'clock.
A communication from his Excellency the Governor by his private secretary, Mr. James S. Walker was delivered to the President, addressed to both houses of the General Assembly, which with the accompanying documents were read as follows:
Gentlemen of the Senate and Gentlemen of the House of Representatives, Your present meeting will form a memorable epoch in our history. Chosen to perform the first acts of Legislation for the State of Alabama, you cannot estimate too highly the great interests committed to your charge, or the important consequences which may flow from your deliberations. The people have framed a constitution which recognizes and establishes the essential principles of liberty; prescribes the manner in which the government shall be organized; and de-
signates the powers which shall be exercised by the respective departments. To the Legislature is confided the arduous task of completing the edifice, and of enacting laws for the protecting of the rights of persons and of property, and for the advancement of the general welfare. Never has any state commenced its operations under more auspicious circumstances or furnished stronger evidence in the outset of its capacity for self-government; and I cherish the hope, that the character of our institutions will receive an impulse from your labours, which may entitle you to the lasting gratitude of future ages.
Our country is remarkable for its natural advantages; and we possess the means of rendering it distinguished for the intelligence and moral habits of its citizens, and for the enlightened policy of its councils.
- The diffusion of knowledge among the people, a code of laws adapted to the prevention of crimes and the enforcement of the civil duties expounded and executed by men selected for their wisdom and integrity; and a due regard to the improvement of those blessings which we owe to the bounty of Providence, and which are presented in our soil, rivers and climate cannot fail to make us respectable abroad- prosperous and happy at home.
Ignorance and civil liberty are unnatural associates where the people are the fountain of authority, the source whence all power is derived, for the direction of the public concerns, and the tribunal whose sentence is final and conclusive, it is indispensable to a just appreciation of their rights an a correct exercise of their control, that they be capable of discriminating between liberty and licentiousness - between invasions of their liberties and those salutary burthens and restraints which are necessary to the general serenity. It is in such a state of society only that honest statesmen can prosecute their plans for the
promotion of the public good with full confidence in the judgment of their constituents: or that the selfish views of designing demagogues will be detected and defeated. It is in such a state of society, that detraction and falsehood, the weapons of faction, will be successfully opposed by the voice of truth; that merit will find a certain reward in the general approbation; that the sin of ingratitude, so often ascribed to republics, will be carefully avoided; that freemen will perceive and pursue their true interests; and that the best evidences will be afforded of the decisive advantages of our representative system over every other form of government. The real patriot who is ambitious to acquire that fame only which belongs to great and good actions, will always appeal to the virtue and intelligence of the community, while the artful seeker of popular favour addresses their passions and their prejudices; and as the one or the other prevails, so will the measures of the State be the offspring of enlarged and disinterested views, or of a narrow contracted polity, as worthy of the character and ruinous to the best interests of a free people.
So important to the advancement of republican principles has the distribution of knowledge been considered, that it is declared in an article of permanent compact between the original states and the people of the territories that Religion, morality, and knowledge, being necessary to good government and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall forever be encouraged." And the Congress have fully redeemed the pledge on the part of the United States. Seventy two sections in two of the townships of land to be designated by the Secretary of the Treasury are reserved by law "for the use of a seminary of learning, and vested in the Legislature of this state" "to be appropriated solely for
the use of such seminary." And the secretary is moreover authorized to select the two townships in small tracts consisting in not less than two sections each. I have been in the expectation of receiving intelligence from the seat of general government respecting the selection but owing for accidental causes, it has not yet reached me. As all the information necessary to enable you to Legislate on the subject, will probably arrive in a few days, I shall at a future period of your session, submit to your consideration the mode of appropriating the lands, which I consider the best calculated to advance the highly interesting object designated in the grant. In addition to the foregoing fund for the purposes of learning, the sixteenth section in every township (or if that has been disposed of) other lands equivalent thereto are "granted to the inhabitants of such townships for the use of schools." An act of Congress authorizes the County Courts to provide for leasing the same, and limits the duration of the lease to the first of January, next succeeding the establishment of a State Government. It is proper therefore that some legislative provision of the subject should be adopted to take effect from and after that period and I perceive no objection to a continuance with the county courts the authority to lease, under the restrictions that the leases shall not extend beyond the term of two years, and that the proceeds shall be applied to the objects for which the grant has been made. In the mean time the country will be generally settled, and it may be advisable thereafter, to place the disposition of the fund, under the immediate control of the inhabitants of the respective townships.
The improvement of our rivers and roads claims your particular attention. Five per cent of the net proceeds to the lands being within this State, which
shall have been or may be sold by Congress, after the first day of September last (deducting all expenses incident to the same) is reserved for making public roads and canals and for improving the navigation of rivers; of which three fifths are to be applied to those objects within this state under the direction of the legislature, and two fifths to the making of a road or roads leading to the state, under the direction of Congress. And our constitution has enjoined that the "General Assembly shall make provisions by law for obtaining correct knowledge of the several objects proper for improvement in relation to the navigable waters and to the roads of this state, and for making a systematic and economical application of the means appropriated to those objects. I recommend to your consideration the policy of providing by law for the appointment of a skillful engineer whose duty it shall be to examine the rivers within our limits, and to report as soon as practicable, to what extent, in what manner, and at what expense the navigation of each may be improved, and also the nearest and most eligible approaches which can be made between the waters of the Tennessee and Mobile rivers.
A general revision of the existing statutes being called for by the late change in our political condition, it is needless and would be tedious to detail the various modifications which have become necessary. The organization of the judicial department and the appointment of judges will also require your early attention. If the primary object of laws are the "establishment of rights and the prohibition of wrongs," it is essential that the laws be calculated to attain those objects, and that they be properly expounded - rigidly and impartially executed. Defects in their execution are no less injurious to society than defects in the laws themselves, and I feel confident that so
far as depends on the legislative authority, every effort will be made to guard against both. The rights of the citizen can never be secure in any country or under any form of government, unless the judges in the last resort be men of integrity and intelligence. To obtain the services of such men, adequate provision for their support is indispensible. In times of great national danger and calamity it may be expected that every patriot regardless of personal considerations, will devote himself to the public; but while the country is in profound peace, and the inhabitants are enjoying its blessings, we should not presume that competent citizens whose pecuniary resources are limited can relinquish their domestic comforts for public honors without due compensation. It would be unreasonable to expect it- unjust to desire it. Avoiding extravagance on the one hand, and parsimony on the other, salaries should be proportionate to the importance and labors of the office, and to the talents which are incident to a correct discharge of its duties. Such a course of policy will render the public services equally accessible to the poor and to the rich and will enable you to select from the best capacities of the country; while a penurious provision will exclude those classes whose fortunes are moderate and whose talents furnish the means of providing for their families. So deeply involved in the course which may be pursued on this subject, do I consider the best interest of our infant state, and so fully am I convinced that the respectability and usefulness of our judiciary will depend on the compensation which may be allowed, that I would respectfully suggest the propriety of legislating on the subject before the judges are appointed.
In relation to the revision of the laws, it may be proper to remark, that the territorial law providing
for the punishment of offences committed on the Indian lands within our limits, but without the boundaries of the respective counties, cannot now be executed. That act authorizes the Superior Courts to proceed to the trial of offenders in any county to which they may be brought; but the constitution of the State declares, that the accused shall be entitled "to a speedy trial by an impartial jury of the County or district in which the offence shall have been committed." It therefore follows, that to render offences cognizable by the courts, they must have been committed within the specified limits of a county. Full force however may be given to the law by annexing to the adjacent counties, all the country within the state not embraced in any county.
Among the duties expressly devolved on the General Assembly by the constitution, and the performance of which during the present session is absolutely required, are the appointment of a Secretary of State, an Attorney General, Solicitors, a Treasurer and Comptroller of Public Accounts and the enactment of laws regulating elections. It is also enjoined that provisions be made for the organizing and disciplining the Militia and for the appointment of the officers; for an enumeration of the inhabitants of the State; and for the appointment of a competent number of Justices of the Peace in the respective counties. You will perceive, moreover, the necessity of providing for the appointment of Coroners, Constables, Surveyors, Assessors and Collectors of Taxes, and of such other county officers as you may deem expedient.
I am in the possession of the means of ascertaining whether any change in the present system of revenue will be required by the amount of the public expenditures. The receipt into the Treasury will be laid before you by the proper officer, and you will be
enabled to estimate the sum that will be necessary to meet the appropriations which may be authorized for the future.
The subject of arranging the permanent limits of the respective counties, so far as it may be practicable under existing circumstances is worthy of your consideration. Accommodations for the courts and houses for securing offenders will not be provided, while the seats of justice are temporary; and such is the extent of some of the counties that a large portion of the inhabitants are deprived of the benefits of government.
That the State may be represented in the Senate of the United States at an early period of their session, it is desirable that the Senators should be elected as soon as your deliberations will permit.
Herewith I lay before you a statement of the accounts between this State and the State of Mississippi, together with explanatory letters on the subject. The copies of the Digests of the laws which are charged in the account have been recently received and distributed.
Having been informed by a communication from an officer of the United States that the quota of arms for the present year, to which this State is entitled under an act of Congress is three hundred and four and that they would be forwarded to any place (the most convenient for water carriage.) I might think proper to designate, I gave instructions that they should be shipped to the town of Mobile. The act under the authority of which the laws have been procured, makes provision for arming and equipping the whole body of the militia of the United States and appropriated for that purpose, the annual sum of two hundred thousand dollars. All the arms obtained in virtue of the Act, are to be transmitted by the several States and Territories in proportion to the num-
ber of effective militia in each and are to be distributed to the militia "under such rules and regulations as shall be by law prescribed by the legislature of each state and territory." It is therefore the province of the General Assembly to adopt the necessary measures for carrying into effect the object of the national legislature.
Pursuant to the provision of an act of the last General Assembly, appointing the Governor a commissioner to lay off, or cause to be laid off, on such plan as he should deem most suitable a town at the junction of the rivers Alabama and Cahawba, and offer the lots for sale to the highest bidder, one hundred and eighty-two lots were sold during the fourth week of May last, for the sum of one hundred and twenty-three thousand eight hundred and fifty-six dollars; of which thirty thousand nine hundred and sixty-four dollars (being one fourth part) was received at the time of sale, together with fifty-one dollars and twenty-five cents, being the second instalment of lot No. 53 ; amounting in the whole to thirty-one thousand and fifteen dollars and twenty-five cents. The expenses of surveying, of sale, &c,. as appears by the receipts of Willis Roberts and Benjamin Clements, were seven hundred and thirty dollars, leaving thirty thousand two hundred and eighty-five dollars twenty-five cents, of which twenty thousand four hundred and five dollars were paid over to the territorial Treasurer. One hundred and twenty dollars have been since drawn to complete the payment of the expences before stated; leaving in the treasury twenty thousand two hundred and eighty five dollars twenty-five cents. Ten thousand dollars were deposited in the Planter's and Merchant's Bank of Huntsville, and will be expended in the erection of a temporary State House at the town of Cahawba, for which a contract was made to the month of May last. Of that sum three thousand dollars have been drawn
and placed in the hands of an agent in Cahawba to be advanced to the contractor in conformity to the terms of agreement. The principle parts of the building are to be finished on or before the first day of August next, for nine thousand dollars; and the remainder of the sum appropriated, will be required and is sufficient to complete the whole, and to provide the necessary accommodations for the two branches of the Legislature. I learn that the building has been commenced, and that no doubt is entertained of its completion within the time specified in the contract.
In lieu of the section of land previously reserved for the seat of the Territorial or State Government, we are indebted to the liberality of Congress for the donation of sixteen hundred and twenty acres for the same object, consisting of sundry fractions and a quarter section "lying on both sides of the Alabama and Cahawba rivers, and including the mouth of the river Cahawba." - There being two ferries and a few acres of land prepared for cultivation within the limits of the grant, they have been rented until the first of January next for one thousand and four dollars. Twenty dollars have been paid, which, with bonds to the amount of nine hundred and eighty four dollars, I have deposited in the Treasury. The very liberal and unprecedented donation we have received, will if judiciously managed, produce a fund of at least three hundred thousand dollars- a sum amply sufficient to provide permanent buildings and accommodations for the several departments of the government and to defray the expences of erecting other works for the public convenience. I consider it advisable that authority be given to lay off and offer for sale, an additional number of lots in the town of Cahawba: and that provision be made for the appointment of commissioners to take charge of the public property and to exercise such powers as are usually granted to corporate towns.
I cannot close this communication without adverting the signal favors which have been bounteously extended towards us by the great Author of every good. Abundant crops have rewarded the labors of the husbandman; and we are permitted to enjoy the blessings of liberty, peace and plenty. No people ever had stronger incentives to improve their means of happiness or were under greater obligations to manifest their devout gratitude to the Ruler of the universe. In discharging the high trusts to which we have been called, let us not be unmindful that the future prosperity of our country is essentially concerned in the councils of the present day; and discharging all local jealousies and party animosities let us unite as members of the same family having a common interest in directing our minds and our efforts to the advancement of the general welfare. So far as depends on me you may rely on every co-operation which can be rendered by good intentions, united with a zealous devotion to the public interest.
On motion of Mr Casey the following resolution was adopted.
Resolved, that ___copies of His Excellency the governor's message with the accompanying documents be forthwith printed for the use of this house.
Mr Casey moved to fill the blank in said resolution with two hundred, which was negatived.
On motion of Mr Chambers, ordered, that the blank be filled with the number one hundred.
On motion of Mr. Moore, resolved, that the message of His excellency the governor be referred to committee of the whole house and be made the order of the day on Friday next.
On motion of Mr. Casey, resolved, that the order of reference of the governor's message be reconsidered.
On motion of Mr. Casey, ordered, that the message of His excellency the governor be referred to committee of the whole house and be made the order of the day on to-morrow.
On motion the senate adjourned until to-morrow morning 10 o'clock.