SEVENTY‑NINTH DAY

_______

MONTGOMERY, ALA.,

Friday, August 30, 1901.

The Convention was called to order by the President, and opened with prayer by the Rev. Mr. Marshall as follows:

O, Lord, our Heavenly Father, we are grateful to Thee for the preservation of our lives during the night, and that Thou hast brought us unto another day with all its duties and its privileges.  We come before Thee this morning realizing our needs of Thee and praying that Thou wouldst this day give us needed grace and strength. We pray Thy blessings upon the deliberations of this wealth be done here. Bless each and every member; guide us all by Thy Spirit, and Thou who holdest the world in the hollow of Thy hand, give us of Thy grace and Thy strength. Be with us through life, and at last in Heaven save us, we ask for Christ's sake. Amen.

Mr. Parker (Cullman) took the Chair.

Upon a call of the roll ninety-one delegates responded to their names.

Leave of absence was granted to Mr. Bulger for today.

The report of the Committee on Journal was read stating that the journal of the seventy-seventh and seventy-eighth days were correct, and the same were adopted.


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MR. COBB‑ On yesterday I gave notice of a motion to re consider a section. I suppose this would be the time to take it up.

PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ Yes, sir, this will be the time.

MR. COBB‑I move to reconsider the vote taken yesterday, for the purpose of offering that amendment and I ask leave to be heard upon my amendment before the motion to reconsider is put so that the Convention may understand what I want to do.

PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑The motion is to reconsider what?

MR. COBB‑ Section 34, Declaration of Rights. But I will be heard after it is put.

PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑ The gentleman from Macon moves to reconsider the vote by which the Article on Declaration and Rights was adopted.

MR. COBB–I ask your attention to this matter.

The amendment was read as follows : In Section 34 of Declaration of Rights amend by striking out the words "Native born citizens" in line 22 and inserting "provided by law."

MR. COBB‑I do not propose to detain the Convention by any argument on this matter. In fact I may almost assume that the amendment will not be adopted, but at the same time I feel it my duty to call attention to this matter because in my opinion, as was said by the distinguished gentleman from Montgomery (Mr. Oates) the other day, it is a matter of very great importance. The Article that we have adopted upon this matter goes farther than any State Government ought to go in conferring rights and privileges upon foreign residents.

This is a matter of importance. The way the matter stands

today there is no distinction whatever between the citizens of the State of Alabama and the foreign residents, and the only distinction you will find in the Constitution is a little provision there that if within a certain time, the foreigner does not take out naturalization papers, he ceases to be entitled to the privilege of suffrage. Otherwise he is on a perfect equality with citizens of the State.

MR. WALKER‑ Would not the effect of your amendment amount to striking out this section entirely?

MR. COBB‑ Oh no. Well, perhaps so. I do not know. It would leave it to the Legislature.

MR. WALKER ‑It is just one method of striking out the section?

MR. COBB‑ Well, I think it ought to be in there anyway, but you do no hurt by striking out the section.


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MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑If your amendment was adopted so that the possession, enjoyment and inheritance of property of non‑residents is left to the disposal of the Legislature absolutely, would there be any foreign capital invested in this country at all?

MR. COBB— I think so, because the Legislature would make provision.

MR. COLEMAN-‑Just leave it to the will and whim of the Legislature?

MR. COBB‑I think so. During late years we have extended our ideas about foreign capital, but the way it is now I want to impress upon this Convention that the foreigner and citizen stand upon the same basis as to rights the privileges in the State of Alabama, and that in itself is argument enough against the provision as it stands today. There ought to be some inducement to men to become citizens of Alabama. What inducement is there now with the provision as it is? What does the foreigner care about being a citizen if he has all the rights privileges and immunities of a citizen? It has been the policy of all countries to make a distinction between a citizen arid a foreigner. All civilized countries extend to foreigners certain rights and privileges, and we have done it in Alabama and there isn't a State in the American Union that doesn’t do it. They have the right to hold certain properties and of carrying on business and have the protection of the law, but we go a bow shot beyond anything that has ever occurred before, and you put them upon an absolute equality with the citizen. The suggestion made to me by the distinguished gentleman from Walker and the distinguished gentleman from Greene. I would answer in this way—

MR. WALKER (Madison) ‑The gentleman from Madison.

MR. COBB‑I beg "Walker's" pardon. ( Laughter.) You can make further amendments if you please. The only point I am driving at is that the rights, privileges and immunities granted to foreigners ought to be restricted. If my amendment goes further than you want it to go, amend the amendment, and put in such things as you think it ought to have, for instance the right to hold certain property, but the Legislature always did give them that.  There was never a Legislature that would not provide that foreigners might hold a homestead, and real estate and ether property, and that did not give them all the benefits of the laws of Alabama as to carrying on trade and things of that sort. But I insist that you go so far as to leave no distinction between a foreigner and a citizen, and that is going further than any State has gone that I know of, or any other civilized people. It is important in my opinion, and therefore, I offer this amendment. If the gentlemen want to offer an amendment to the amendment. I am perfectly willing, but I do not want to leave this broad open field to


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foreigners whereby they can come into the State of Alabama, and not only have the full protection of the law, but also exercise all the privileges of citizenship and receive all its immunities, and yet be relieved of the burden of citizenship. That is what you do. You do relieve them of the burdens. They are not subject to military duty and to various obligations of citizenship. Foreigners are absolutely free from these burdens, and they have all the privileges, with none of the burdens by reason of our grace in extending so broadly these privileges, immunities and rights. I will not argue the question farther, but I hope this Convention will see fit to consider this matter.

MR. BOONE‑-This is identical and Section 34, which we have adopted, is word for word the same as Section 36 in the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of 1875. We have not felt any great evils under the Constitution of 1875, owing to this provision, that the bona fide residents of this State shall enjoy the same rights in respect to the possession, enjoyment and inheritance of property as native born citizens. Surely we do not want to go back into that period of prejudice, or anything that smacks of it.

As a gentleman suggests, it is confined to only bona fide residents of this State. I know in my native city of many foreigners, I have one in mind who married a lady of distinguished family of this State, and has many children. They live there. That has been his place of residence for over 25 years. He has bought property there and educated his children there and his children are citizens of the United States.

MR. COBB‑ If that is true, why does not this man become a citizen of the State?

MR. BOONE‑ Because he is a representative of the German empire as Consul for Germany. Now, without further debate, I move to lay the amendment upon the table.

Upon a vote being taken, the motion to table the amendment prevailed.

MR. SPRAGINS ‑ The Committee desires to make some small corrections, and they ask unanimous consent to do so. In Article VI, on the Judicial Department, page 36, line 24 between the words "have" and "jurisdiction" we ask leave to insert the word "original" so that it shall read, "it shall have original jurisdiction only where the matter can still, in controversy exceeds fifty dollars.”

MR. SMITH (Mobile)‑I have been looking at that and have conferred with some of the members of the Judiciary Committee and they ask unanimous consent in that respect. The error crept in changing the phraseology of the old Constitution, and the Committee think it would be better to have the word "only"


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stricken out and in place inserted the word “except.”  Then the words “no original” should be inserted after the word “have.

MR. SPRAGINS–The committee accepts the suggestion made by the chairman of the Judiciary Committee.  The correction will be in the latter half of line 24, and when corrected, it will read “shall have no original jurisdiction except where the matter or sum in controversy exceeds fifty dollars.”

Unanimous consent was given, and the amendment ordered.

MR. SPRAGINS–Now on page 38, line 7 we ask leave to insert after the word “and” in the middle of the line the words “with power,” so that it will read “the Legislature shall have power to establish in each county a court of probate, with general jurisdiction of orphan’s business, and with power to grant letters testamentary and of administration.”

The consent was given, and the amendment ordered.

MR. SPRAGINS–Now on page 40, line 25, after the word “rendered” we ask unanimous consent to add the words, “but for such incompetency,” striking out the period after the word “rendered.”

The President resumed the chair.

The consent was given.

MR. SPRAGINS–On page 42, line 8 we ask consent to put around the words “in the circuit brackets.

MR. SMITH (Mobile)–It seems to me that amendment should be made.  I doubt whether as written without the brackets the meaning of this provision is that he shall reside in a county in which there is a prosecution or a county in the circuit in which there is a prosecution.  In other words, whether it is sufficient that there should be a criminal prosecution in the circuit and he should reside in one of the counties, or whether it requires him to reside in the county in which there is a prosecution.  I think the amendment is necessary to relieve that ambiguity.

The consent was given, and the amendment ordered.

MR. SPRAGINS– Now I move the adoption of the article, and on that I call the previous question.

THE PRESIDENT–The gentleman from Madison moves the adoption of the article as reported, and a call for the previous question.

MR. WILSON (Clarke)–I ask the gentleman to withdraw that a moment.

The motion was withdrawn


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MR. WILSON (Clarke)‑I desire to offer a short amendment.

The Secretary read the amendment as follows: Amend Section 120 on page 38, middle of page, by inserting in line 14, after the words "official terms" the following: "And the Circuit Judges and Chancellors shall be paid mileage not exceeding the amount actually paid by them for railroad fare in traveling to and from the terms of their courts."

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Clarke.

MR. WILSON‑I just desire to say one word in reference to this amendment. At the time we passed this judiciary article which did not provide for mileage, we had not passed the "evil" proposition, and we had not restricted the judicial officers from accepting passes.

MR. FOSTER‑ Don't you think the Legislature could allow that?

MR. WILSON‑ They will have to travel for two years before the Legislature would meet in 1902.

MR. GRAHAM (Talladega)‑-Have you not known judges and chancellors in this State that did not ask the Legislature for any mileage?

MR. WILSON‑ Yes sir, our Circuit Judge did.

MR. GRAHAM‑ Don't you think they all ought to do it, or resign ?

MR. WILSON‑ That is another proposition. No, I don't think they ought. So far as the question asked by the gentleman from Tuscaloosa is concerned, (Mr. Foster), the gentlemen who favored the abolition of the "pass evil “were not willing to trust that to the Legislature and we have abolished that and have ourselves taken charge of it.

MR. OATES‑ May I ask the gentleman a question.

THE PRESIDENT‑ Will the gentleman yield?

MR. WILSON‑ Yes.

MR. OATES‑ The gentleman states there will be no Legislature to meet for two years. I want to inquire how this Constitution is going to be put in force and given effect, unless the Governor calls the present Legislature together to put into effect ?

MR. WILSON‑ Those provisions that are self-operating will go into effect and those which are not self executing will not go into effect.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. OATES‑ The presumption is that the Legislature will be called together.

MR. WILSON‑ That may possibly be. This is a small matter. My own Circuit Judge told me that the amount of railroad fare he paid every year was $35 in going to and from the regular terms of his court. I think that is about the average of all, the judges in the State. Taking that as a basis the total amount would be $468. When it comes to Chancellors it is right considerable, our Chancellor goes to Mobile, the biggest county—

MR. GREER (Calhoun)–Would you not accept an amendment that we include hotel bill?

MR. FITTS‑ And cigars?

MR. WILSON‑‑ No sir, and I did not even put in an amendment that he should receive back fare. A good many go in wagons over some of the counties and they pay for that too, and I did not put that in because it is uncertain what it would amount to, and would require proof. I thought it best to include only actual railroad fare.

MR. BEDDOW ‑ I wish to ask the gentleman if he heard from any of the Chancellors on this subject?

MR. WILSON‑ Not on this subject, Mr. President; (Laughter) I have not heard from any Chancellor on this subject. The circular letter was not on this subject, it was on the subject of the "evil." (Laughter.) I think Mr. President, apart from levity, this is right. We give the members of the Legislature 10 cents a mile and that is to pay not only the railroad fare, but sleeping car fare and hotel bills. They are given 10 cents a mile, and the members of the Legislature and judiciary are the only ones we prohibit from receiving passes, and I think that this provision should be adopted. It would cost the State such an inconsiderable amount that it really is not worth hesitating about. The Circuit Judges would not exceed $500, and the Chancellors between $800 and $900. Some of the Chancellors have to pay in the neighborhood of $200 and taking into consideration the small salaries they get, it is a considerable amount to them, but would be a very small amount to the State. I simply offer the amendment thinking it ought to be adopted.

MR. WHITE‑‑ It is purely a legislative matter, and in reply to the gentleman's suggestion that at the time we adopted the anti-pass proposition that we did not have this matter in mind, I will say that I supposed a large majority of the members of the Convention did not suppose that Judges and Chancellors at that time were riding upon free passes. I therefore move to lay the amendment on the table.


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Upon a vote being taken the motion to table the amendment prevailed.

MR. MILLER (Wilcox)— I desire to offer an amendment.

The Secretary read the amendment as follows:

Amend Section 168, page 43, in line 2 after the word "fees" insert "and their jurisdiction."

THE PRESIDENT— The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Wilcox.

MR. MILLER— I invite the special attention of delegates to that amendment. In view of local legislation changing the jurisdiction of justices of the peace, it is important that our judicial system in all of its branches should be uniform, and this section provides that fees of justices of the peace shall be uniform throughout the State, and that amendment seeks to make their jurisdiction throughout the State uniform. In some portions of the State, particularly in my own county, as was evidenced yesterday by a special amendment by my colleague, Mr. Jones of Wilcox, we have a statute, special law, giving justices of the peace jurisdiction of misdemeanors and in other section of the State they have special laws affecting the jurisdiction of justices of the peace, and it seems to me it would be a good idea to have their jurisdiction uniform throughout the State. Our Constitution here fixes their civil jurisdiction and the criminal statutes of the State their general criminal jurisdiction, and this seeks to put all, the justices in every county on a uniform system, and I would like to call the attention of delegates to this, and I hope the amendment will be adopted. It reads which fees of justices of the peace and their jurisdiction shall be uniform throughout the State.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Wilcox.

MR. PILLANS‑ While I concur heartily with the motives of the gentleman, in offering this amendment, and I know that there are evils of which he speaks, but we run a risk in hasty legislation, adopting an amendment at this late hour, of doing something very injurious. I can instance one case, that we have removed from justices of the Peace, criminal jurisdiction in Mobile County, because they handled it so. If this amendment were passed, it would put back into their hands a jurisdiction which was ruinous to the poor of the community in which they practiced. I move to lay the amendment upon the table.

Upon a vote being taken, a division was called for, and a further vote being taken, there were ayes 47 noes 40, and the motion to table prevailed.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. OATES‑ Before offering any amendment. I desire to submit an inquiry to the committee and the Convention. Section 155, page 39, the latter part of it, there is this language: "And the right of such judges and Chancellors to hold their offices for the full term hereby prescribed, shall not be affected by any change hereafter made by law in any circuit, division or county, or in the mode or tune of election."

The inquiry I wish to submit is this: As to whether the Legislature is authorized to abolish a court wherever lack of business or other cause exists for it, and if one of these courts is abolished, if the judge is entitled to his salary for the full term. I think he would. It has been decided in the Selma case where a statutory judge was abolished the salary went with it, but if you put it in the Constitution without qualification he could draw his salary although he performed no service whatever. I have an amendment here which I have drawn—

MR. WALKER‑I think this is just the way it was in the old Constitution. The purpose of it is to prohibit abolishing of judges for the term for which they are elected.

MR. OATES‑ That is probably quite true, but we have a provision in this that is not in the old Constitution.

MR. WALKER‑A judge who has been elected to a term to a constitutional court, I think he should be entitled to the salary.

MR. OATES‑ Not if the court is abolished.

MR. PILLANS‑ Might it not be the policy of the clause in this, that you thereby get rid of the powerful opposition of that judge to the wholesome change in the law abolishing this court by letting him go on to the end of the term with full pay, he having abandoned the practice of law with the expectation of receiving it.

MR. OATES‑I think if I were a Legislator I would not care anything about the office, I would do what was right. In the event the Legislature sees fit to abolish that, the people should not have to continue to pay the salary. I will offer the amendment to the Convention.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend Section 155, page 39, provided the abolition of any court by the Legislature shall not entitle the judge of such court thereafter to draw his salary."

MR. SMITH (Mobile)‑This question, as I recollect it, was discussed at the time the article was passed. The gentleman from Montgomery introduced what resulted in Section 171, but as introduced, it sought to give to the Legislature the


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

power to abolish any court, not only when its jurisdiction and functions had been conferred upon some other court, but whenever it thought it was necessary or proper. The fight was then made upon giving the power to the Legislature to abolish any court at its discretion. The Judiciary Committee did not think it wise to give the Legislature power simply to legislate an officer out of his office. In the Judiciary Committee, the clause was carefully canvassed and considered, and it was the intention after deliberate consideration not to give to the Legislature the power to legislate one man out of office and another man into office. The way we have the courts arranged the Legislature can, if it sees fit, simply swap the same judicial business from one form of court to another form of court, and while that power is greatly in the interest of a judicial system, so long as it is used to accommodate the courts to the needs of the people, it would be an unwholesome power if used simply for the purpose of legislating one man out of office and another man into office, merely to take from one judge and give it to another, they would swap it from one name of the court to another name, and as a check upon that power, we have provided that even when they change their court, they should not legislate a judge out of office, and I think the provision is a wise one.

MR. OATES‑ Do you not state the question rather broadly, saying legislate one out and legislate one in?

MR. SMITH‑ It is broad. I was going to say it is very broad, but it took a broad statement to cover the Constitutional provision, and it is just broad enough to cover the Constitutional provision. We provide that they make special courts or may transfer the jurisdiction.

MR. WALKER‑ Under the provision as afforded, is there any likelihood of there being the necessity of abolishing these courts entirely?

MR. SMITH‑I do not think there is.

MR. WALKER‑ By transferring the jurisdiction, the courts can be perpetuated consistently with public interests. The probability is very remote of any necessity to abolish.

MR. SMITH‑ But the power would be there to gerrymander a man out of office, if there were not some restriction. Now then when the gentleman from Montgomery offered this broad clause, in conflict with the intention and spirit of the article, reported by the Judiciary, which allowed the Legislature to gerrymander them out we amended it so as to provide that the courts should not be abolished except when its jurisdiction and functions had been done away with


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I therefore move that the amendment be laid upon the table.  Upon a vote being taken, the motion to table prevailed.

MR. OATES‑‑I desire to offer another amendment.

"Amend Section 162, page 41, by adding thereto the following: 'Nor engage in active partisan politics.'”

MR. OATES‑I desire to say that I offered an amendment similar to this in different language, in the Convention when this article was under consideration, and it was voted down. I offer this in briefer language, and think it entirely proper. I suppose the lawyers of this Convention, the older ones anyway, remember as I do years ago, that such a thing as a judge while in office, to engage actively in partisan politics, as unheard of, and it was considered a highly improper thing to do. Nothing of the kind that I ever heard of, until long since the war. A judge should be esteemed for his purity and for his impartiality. It is all elevated position, to sit upon and adjudge the rights of others, and a man should not be suspected of any bias, because he is a Democrat, a Populist, or a Republican, and while he ought to have the right to vote, and participate in elections, he should not go out and engage in active politics, making speeches, serving on campaign committees and all of that. It greatly impairs the respect of the people for the judge to do it. Hence I offer this amendment.

MR. WALKER‑ This proposition, identical in meaning, was presented to the Convention when the judiciary article was before it. I do not think the Convention will change its views upon this proposition. That question of the extent of participation in politics by a plan on the bench is at least a question of the individuals' view of the properties, and you cannot fix a provision that will keep a man who is innately a politician, from having something to do with politics.  He may work in underground methods, but you do not change the politician into a judge by putting him on the bench and there is no use trying to legislate human nature out of men; therefore I move to table the amendment.

MR. OATES–Might it not show to the people that he is an improper man to be judge, if he is actively participating in politics.

MR. WALKER–If he actively participates in politics, and public sentiment disapproves of that kind of thing, he will go off of the bench and that is the best remedy for this sort of thing.

MR. OATES–I do not think he would do it.  I should think that a judge like you would not require a thin of this kind, but there are some who would require it.

THE PRESIDENT–The question will be upon the motion to table the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.


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Upon a vote being taken, a division was called for, and by a further vote of 55 ayes and 46 noes, the amendment was laid upon the table.

MR. OATES ‑ I desire to be indulged to offer the other amendment, to sleep with the others, I suppose; however it conveys my sentiments.

The amendment was read as follows: "Amend Section 165 page 41 by striking out of lines 23 and 24 the following words "and may when appointed by the Chancellors also fill the office of Register in Chancery."

MR. OATES‑ The policy as declared in this Constitution is that no one shall hold two offices of authority in the State, with a few petty minor exceptions, and in this case, authorizing the Clerk of, the Circuit Court to hold the office of Register in Chancery might produce a conflict. For instance, both courts might be in session at the same time, and it seems to me there are scarcely offices enough for well qualified gentlemen in this State, not near enough to give one office to each man, and I have heard already some complaints since this action was taken of this very thing.

MR. WALKER (Madison)‑I want to make this suggestion. It was suggested that should be done because of the difficulty in some small counties of the State of getting some one to take the office of Register in Chancery. It has been done although it has been unauthorized because it has been impossible to get another mall to take the office of Register in Chancery. and it is found necessary in such small counties to get the services of the circuit clerk, in that case, and that is done simply to—

MR. OATES‑I have no doubt the committee in making that provision were actuated by solve such consideration, but the number of counties is so small where the office of register in it is too poor for anybody to accept it that I think they can be counted on the fingers of one hand or half of them. My experience and observation is that you find too many who are hungry for every office, however small it may be, and I have known that this has been done in some important counties in the State, where a complaint has been made on account of it and where there has been conflict of duty to the people. I don't think it ought to be there and I don't think we can be consistent in it and yet make this exception. That is the reason I offer the amendment.

THE PRESIDENT‑T he question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.

MR. COBB‑ My friend from Madison has explained why it was that this provision was put into the Constitution. It not infrequently happens that there is some difficulty in getting a register in chancery for the reason that the office pays nothing in many


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counties, and this was only a provision allowing the chancellor, in his discretion, to appoint the clerk of the Circuit Court, if he was suitable, to he his register, so that out of the two offices one respectable office might be made and a competent man might he secured. I do not take much to this idea about offices going around. Offices were not made for office holders. They were made for the good of the people and for the proper administration of law in the State of Alabama, and the people of Alabama are very indifferent whether one man or another holds office, provided he discharged his duty faithfully. I move to lay the amendment on the table.

Upon a vote being taken a division was called for and by a vote of 59 ayes and 42 noes the motion to table the amendment prevailed.

MR. SPRAGINS‑I now move the adoption of the article and on that I call the previous question.

MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)‑I desire to offer an amendment and I ask the gentleman to let me offer one other amendment.

MR. SPRAGINS‑ If the gentleman from Lauderdale is willing to take the chances and will promise not to make a speech (applause) and will renew my motion, I will withdraw it.

MR. O'NEAL— I accept the proposition.

The amendment by Mr. O'Neal was read as follows:

Amend Section 168, page 43, by adding thereto the following:

The Legislature may increase the jurisdiction of the inferior courts provided for in this section in all civil cases to an amount not exceeding five hundred dollars.

MR. WATTS‑I move to lay the amendment upon the table.

Upon a vote being taken the motion to table the amendment prevailed.

MR. SPRAGINS‑I now renew my motion for the adoption of the article, and upon that I call the previous question.

The main question was ordered, and upon a further vote being taken the article was adopted.

Article VII on Impeachments was read as follows:

ARTICLE VII

Impeachments

173. The Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Attorney General, State Auditor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Superintendent of Education, Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, and


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Justices of the Supreme Court may be removed from office for wilful neglect of duty, corruption in office, incompetency, or intemperance in the use of intoxicating liquors or narcotics to such an extent, in view of the dignity of the office and importance of its duties as unfits the officer for the discharge of such duties or for any offense involving moral turpitude while in office, or committed under color thereof or connected therewith, by the Senate sitting as a court of impeachment, under oath or affirmation, on articles or charges preferred by the House of Representatives.

174. The chancellors, judges of the Circuit Court, judges of the Probate Courts, Sheriffs, Solicitors and judges of other courts from which an appeal may be taken directly to the Supreme Court, may be removed from office for any of the causes specified in the preceding section or elsewhere in this Constitution by the Supreme Court, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law.  The Legislature may provide for the impeachment or removal of other officers than those named in this article.

175. The clerks of the Circuit Courts or courts of like jurisdiction, of criminal courts, tax collectors, tax assessors, county treasurers, county superintendents of public instruction, coroners, justices of the peace, judges of inferior courts, created under authority of Section 168 of this Constitution, notaries public, constables and all other county officers, Mayors, intendants and all other officers of incorporated cities and towns in this state, may be removed from office for any of the causes specified in Section 173 of this Constitution, by the Circuit or other courts of like jurisdiction or a criminal court of the county in which such officers hold their office, under such regulations as may be prescribed by law : provided, that the right of trial by jury and appeal in such cases shall be secured.

176. The penalties in cases arising under the three preceding sections shall not extend beyond removal from office and disqualification from holding office under the authority of this State, for the term for which the officer was elected or appointed; but the accused shall be liable to indictment and punishment as prescribed by law.

MR. JONES (Montgomery)‑I desire to offer an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

Amend Section 173, page 44, by adding at the end thereof the following words : "When the Governor or Lieutenant Governor is impeached. the Chief Justice, or, in his absence or disability, some one of the justices of the Supreme Court, to be selected by it, shall preside over the Senate when sitting as a court of impeachment."

Mr. Mulkey here took the Chair.


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MR. JONES (Montgomery) ‑ I desire briefly to state that amendment has been submitted to the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony, and the Committee approve of it. It is intended to cure an evil that might otherwise exist of the Lieutenant-Governor having the legal if not the moral right to preside over the Senate, when it was trying the Governor whom he was to succeed, and I think the people of the State think we ought to provide against contingencies of that sort, and for that reason I move the adoption of the amendment.

MR. WHITE‑ On behalf of the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony, I will state that the committee is perfectly willing to adopt the provision contained in the amendment. We did not feel authorized, however, to make that change without the direction of the Convention.

So far as the Committee is concerned it is all right. I do not know how the Committee on Impeachments may feel about it.

MR. OATES‑Is this not in strict accord with the provisions of the Constitution of the United States relative to impeachments before the Senate thereof?

MR. WHITE‑ Yes. I think it is.

MR. OATES‑I think it is entirely, proper to do it.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.

Upon a vote being taken the amendment was adopted.

MR. JONES (Montgomery)‑I offer another amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

Amend Section 173 by adding at the end thereof the following words, to wit:

If, at any time, when the Legislature is not in session, a majority of all the members elected to the House of Representatives shall certify its writing to the Secretary of State their desire to meet to consider the impeachment of the Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, or any, other officer administering the office of Governor, it shall be the duty of the Secretary of State to immediately notify the Speaker of the House, who shall, within ten days after receipt of such notice, notify the members of the House by publication in some newspaper published at the Capitol, to assemble at the Capital on a day, to be fixed by the Speaker, not later than fifteen days after the receipt of the notice from the Secretary of State, to consider the impeachment of the Governor, Lieutenant-Governor, or other officer administering the office of Governor.  If the House of Representatives prefer Articles of Impeachment,


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the Speaker of the House shall immediately notify the Lieutenant-Governor, unless he be impeached, and in that event the officer next in succession to him, who shall, in like manner, notify the members of the Senate to assemble at the Capital, on a day to be fixed in said notice, not later than ten days after the receipt of the notice from the Speaker; and the Senate, when thus organized, shall hear and try such Articles of Impeachment against the Governor,  Lieutenant-Governor, or other officer exercising the powers of the office, as may be presented by the House of Representatives.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑-The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.

MR. JONES (Montgomery)‑ I do not suppose that there is anything in the objects of the amendment which will be objectionable to the Committee on Impeachments. I will state that I was not here when that Article was discussed, or I would have offered it then.

The amendment has been submitted to the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony, and while they do not feel at liberty to approve it, they do not disapprove it, and have no objection to it. The purpose of the amendment is this: It has been irrevocably fixed by this Convention that the Legislature will not ordinarily be in session more than once in four years, and the object of the amendment is to authorize the people's representatives, if some emergency should arise, to have some power to call the Governor, or person exercising the office of Governor to account.  We all remember some years ago in North Carolina that Governor Holden of that State called out the militia, declared martial law, defied the Supreme Court, and acted as a tyrant for nearly eighteen months, because there was no way by which the Legislature could constitutionally meet to impeach him. When the Legislature met, it did impeach Governor Holden and removed him from office. We hope that nothing of that sort will ever occur in our State, but we are framing a Constitution to meet contingencies, and it seems wise, therefore, to have some such power resting somewhere. I have provided, first, to have the call by majority of the members elected to the House of Representatives and not to have the Senate called together in the first instance, because the Senate would have no necessity to meet unless Articles of Impeachment were preferred, and it was not the purpose to put the State to the expense of having the Senate meet if the House failed to prefer Articles of Impeachment. It is all confined to the contingency of the misconduct or officers exercising the powers of Governor. The reason for that is that if any other officer should commit an impeachable offense that was a great scandal, the Governor would have the power to call an extra session for that purpose.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

I do not desire to take up the time of the Convention, but it seems to me that it will do away with one objection that has been urged with great force against quadrennial sessions, and it will satisfy the people that they have some oversight of their Executive Officer during these four years if the occasion should arise for it to be exercised, and therefore I hope it will be adopted.

MR. HOOD‑ This is a very radical departure. No Committee has had an opportunity of looking into this matter. It is sprung here in these last days of the Convention, and the Convention has not a proper opportunity of looking into the wisdom of this amendment. I therefore move to lay it on the table.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.—  The gentleman from Etowah moves to lay the amendment on the table.

MR. JONES (Montgomery)‑On that I call for the aye, and noes.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene) ‑ I call for the reading of the amendment.

The amendment was read again.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The gentleman from Montgomery calls for an aye and nay vote. Is the call sustained?

The call was sustained.

The call of the roll resulted as follows:

AYES

Altman,

Carnathon,

Merrill,

TOTAL‑3

NOES

Messrs,. President,

Chapman,

Fitts,

Ashcraft,

Cobb,

Fletcher,

Banks,

Cofer,

Foshee,

Barefield,

Coleman, of Greene,

Foster,

Bartlett,

Coleman, of Walker,

Freeman,

Beddow',

Craig,

Glover

Bethune,

Cunningham,

Graham, of Montgomery,

Blackwell,

Davis, of DeKalb,

Graham, of Talladega,

Boone,

Davis, of Etowah,

Grant,

Brooks,

Dent,

Grayson,

Burnett,

deGraffenreid,

Greer, of Perry,

Burns,

Duke,

Haley,

Byars,

Eley,

Handley,

Cardon,

Eyster,

Harrison,

Case,

Ferguson,

Heflin, of Chambers,


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Heflin, of Randolph,

Murphree,

Sentell,

Henderson,

NeSmith,

Sloan,

Hodges,

Norman,

Smith (Mobile),

Hood,

Norwood,

Smith, Mac. A.,

Howze,

Oates,

Smith, Morgan M

Inge,

O'Neill (Jefferson),

Sorrell,

Jackson,

O' Neal (Lauderdale),

Spears,

Jones, of Bibb,

Opp,

Spragins,

Jones, of Hale,

O'Rear,

Stewart,

f ones, of Montgomery,

Palmer,

Vaughan,

Jones, of Wilcox,

Parker (Cullman),

Waddell,

Knight,

Parker (Elmore),

Walker,

Kyle,

Pearce,

Watts,

Ledbetter,

Pettus,

Weakley,

Lomax,

Phillips,

Weatherly,

Long (Walker),

Pillans,

White,

Lowe (Lawrence),

Porter,

Whiteside,

Macdonald,

Proctor,

Williams (Barbour),

McMillan (Baldwin),

Reese,

Williams (Marengo),

McMillan (Wilcox),

Reynolds (Chilton),

Williams (Elmore),

Malone,

Rogers (Lowndes),

Wilson (Clarke),

Martin,

Rogers (Sumter),

Wilson (Washington),

Miller (Marengo),

Sanders,

Willet,

Moody,

Sanford,

Mulkey,

Searcy,

TOTAL– 118

ABSENT OR NOT VOTING

Almon,

Jenkins,

Renfro,

Beavers,

King,

Reynolds (Henry),

Browne,

Kirk,

Robinson,

Bulger,

Kirkland,

Sanford,

Carmichael, of Colbert,

Leigh,

Selheimer,

Carmichael, of Coffee,

Locklin,

Sollie,

Cornwall,

Long (Butler),

Studdard,

Espy,

Lowe (Jefferson),

Tayloe,

Gilmore,

Maxwell,

Thompson,

Greer, of Calhoun,

Miller (Wilcox),

Willet,

Hinson,

Morrisette,

Howell,

Pitts,

So the motion to table was lost.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑ The question is on the adoption of the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.

So the motion to table was lost.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑ The question is on the adoption of the amendment offered by the gentleman from Montgomery.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑I move the adoption of the article as it has been amended, and upon that I move the previous question.

The previous question was ordered, and further vote being taken the article on impeachments as amended was adopted.

MR. deGRAFFENREID — The article on impeachments has been amended in material particulars by the Convention and one or two of them are long amendments. The rules under which the house is now acting provide that when the Convention has gone over the Constitution and adopted it. acting upon this report, that the whole Constitution shall be re‑ferred, if amended in any part to the Committee on Order, Harmony and Consistency.  On yesterday, part of the Constitution was turned over to the Engrossing Committee for the purpose of having it written upon  parchment which has been provided. I now move to suspend the rules in order that I may move that the article on impeachments be now referred to the Committee on Order, Harmony and Consistency, in order that they may prepare it for the Committee on Engrossing.

Upon a vote being taken, the motion to suspend the rules was adopted.

MR. deGRAFFENREID– I now make the motion.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The motion is that the article on impeachments be referred back to the Committee on Order,  Harmony and Consistency of the Whole Constitution.

A vote being taken, the motion was adopted.

MR. WHITE‑I ask unanimous consent to introduce an ordinance prepared by the committee.

The Secretary read the ordinance as follows:

Ordinance No. 460 by Mr. White.

An ordinance to empower and authorize the Legislature to amend or repeal all ordinances adopted by the Convention not contained in the proposed Constitution.

Be it ordained by the people of Alabama in Convention Assembled:

That the Legislature be and the same is authorized and empowered to revise, alter, amend or repeal all ordinances or parts of ordinances adopted by this Convention not incorporated in the


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

proposed Constitution of the State by act passed and approved by the Governor as in other cases; provided, that the Legislature shall have no power or authority to repeal an ordinance relating try the bonded indebtedness of the State, adopted by the Convention on the 10th day of August, 1901; provided further, that the Legislature shall have no power to repeal or amend ordinances establishing court houses except in accordance with Section 41 of Article II of this Constitution.

Referred to judiciary Committee.

The Clerk read Article VIII as follows:

ARTICLE VIII

Suffrage and Elections

177. Every male citizen of this State who is a citizen of the United States, and every male resident of foreign birth, who, before the ratification of this Constitution, shall have legally declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States, twenty-one; years old or upwards, not laboring under any of the disabilities named in this article, and possessing the qualifications required by it, shall be an elector, and shall be, entitled to vote at any election by the people, provided, that all foreigners who have legally declared their intention to become citizens of the United States, shall, if they fail to become citizens thereof at the time they are entitled to become such, cease to have the right to vote until they become such citizens.

178. To entitle a person to vote at any election by the people, he shall have resided in the State at least two years, in the county one year, and in the precinct or ward three months, immediately preceding the election at which he offers to vote, and he shall have been duly registered as an elector, and shall have paid, on or before the first day of February next preceding the date of the election at which he offers to vote, all poll taxes due from him for the year nineteen hundred and one, and for each subsequent year; provided, that any elector who, within three months next preceding the date of the election at which he offers to vote, has removed from one precinct or ward in the same county, incorporated town or city, shall have the right to vote in the precinct or ward from which he has removed, if he would have been entitled to vote in such precinct or ward but for such removal.

179. All elections by the people shall be by ballot, and all elections by persons in a representative capacity shall be viva voce.

180. The following male citizens of the State, who are citizens of the United States, and every male resident of foreign birth who, before the ratification of this Constitution, shall have legally declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States, except those who shall not have had an opportunity to perfect his citizenship prior to the twentieth day of December, nineteen hundred and two, twenty-one years old or upwards, who, if their place of residence shall remain unchanged, will have, at the date of the next general election the qualification as to residence prescribed in Section


4776                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

178 of this Constitution, and who are not disqualified under Section 182 of this Constitution, shall upon application, be entitled to, register as electors prior to the twentieth day of December, nineteen hundred and two, namely:

First— All who have honorably served in the land or naval forces of the United States in the war of 1812, or in the war with Mexico, or in any war with the Indians, or in the war between the States, or in the war with Spain, or who honorably served in the land or naval forces of the Confederate States, or of the State of Alabama in the war between the States; or,

Second‑‑ The lawful descendants of persons who honorably served in the land or naval forces of the United States in the war of the American Revolution, or in the war of 1812, or in the war with Mexico, or in any war with the Indians, or in the war between the States, or in the land or naval forces of the Confederate State, or of the State of Alabama in the war between the States; or,

Third— All persons who are of good character and who understand the duties and obligations of citizenship under a republican form of government.  181. After the first day of January, nineteen hundred and three, the following persons, and no others, who, if their place of residence shall remain unchanged, will have, at the date of the next general election, the qualifications as to residence prescribed in Section 178 of this Constitution, shall be qualified to register as electors, provided, they shall not be disqualified under Section 182 of this Constitution.

First— Those who can read and write any article of the Constitution of the United States in the English language, and who, being physically able to work, have worked or been regularly engaged in some lawful employment, business or occupation, trade or calling for the greater part of the twelve months next preceding the time they offer to register; provided that inability to read and write shall not disqualify any elector, if such disability is due to physical infirmity; or

Second‑‑That the owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of a woman who is the owner in good faith, in her own right, of forty acres of land situate in this State, upon which they reside; or the owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of any woman who is the owner in good faith, in her own right, of real estate, situate in this State assessed for taxation at the value of three hundred dollars or more, or the owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of a woman who is the owner in good faith, in her own right, of personal property in this State assessed for taxation at three hundred dollars or more; provided, that the taxes due upon such real or personal property for the year next preceding the year in which he offers to register shall have been paid, unless the assessment shall have been legally contested and is undetermined.

182. The following persons shall be disqualified both from registering and from voting, namely:

All idiots and insane persons; those who shall by reason of conviction of crime be disqualified from voting at the time of the ratification of this


4777

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Constitution; those who shall be convicted of treason, murder, arson, embezzlement, malfeasance in office, larceny, receiving stolen property, obtaining property or money under false pretenses, perjury, subornation of perjury, robbery, assault with intent to rob, burglary, forgery, bribery, assault and battery on the wife, bigamy, living in adultery, sodomy, incest, rape, miscegenation, crime against nature, or any crime punishable by imprisonment in the penitentiary, or of any infamous crime or crime involving moral turpitude; also any person who shall be convicted as a vagrant or tramp, or of selling or offering to sell his vote or the vote of another, or of buying or offering to buy the vote of another, or of making or offering to make a false return in any election by the people or in any primary election to procure the nomination or election of any person to any office, or of suborning any witness or registrar to secure the registration of any person as an elector.

183. No person shall be qualified to vote or participate in any primary election, party convention, mass meeting or other method of party action of any political party or faction, who shall not possess the qualifications prescribed in this Article for an elector, or who shall be disqualified from voting under the provisions of this Article.

184. No person, not registered and qualified as an elector under the provisions of this Article, shall vote at the general election in 1902, or at any subsequent State, county, or municipal election, general, local or special; but the provisions of this Article shall not apply to any election held prior to  the general election in the year 1902.

 

185. Any elector whose right to vote shall be challenged for any legal cause before an election officer, shall be required to swear or affirm that the matter of the challenge is untrue before his vote shall be received, and any one who wilfully swears or affirms falsely thereto shall be guilty of perjury, and, upon conviction thereof, shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five years.

186. The Legislature shall provide by law for the registration, after the first day of January, 1903, of all qualified electors. Until the first day of January, 1903, all electors shall be registered under and in accordance with the requirements of this section as follows:

First— Registration shall be conducted in each county by a board of three reputable and suitable persons resident in the county, who shall not hold any elective office during their term, to be appointed within sixty days after the ratification of this Constitution by the Governor, Auditor, and Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, or by a majority of them, acting as a board of appointment. If one or more of the persons appointed on such Board of Registration shall refuse, neglect or be unable to qualify or serve, or if a vacancy or vacancies occur in the membership of the Board of Registrars from any cause, the Governor, Auditor, and Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, or a majority of them, acting as a board of appointment, shall make other appointments to fill such board. Each registrar shall receive two dollars per day to be paid by the State and disbursed by the several Judges of Probate, for each entire day's attendance upon the sessions


4778                                          

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

of the board. Before entering upon the performance of the duties of his office, each registrar shall take the same oath required of judicial officers of the State, which oath may be administered by any person authorized by law to administer oaths. The oath shall be in writing and subscribed by the registrar, and filed in the office of the Judge of Probate of the county.

Second— Prior to the first day of August, 1902, the Board of Registrars in each county shall visit each precinct at least once, and oftener, if necessary, to make a complete registration of all persons entitled to register, and shall remain there at least one day from 8 o'clock in the morning until sunset.  They shall give at least twenty days notice of the time when, and the place in the precinct where, they will attend to register applicants for registration, by bills posted at live or more public places in each election precinct, and by advertisements once a week for three successive weeks in a newspaper, if there be one published in the county. Upon failure to give such notice, or to attend any appointment made by them in any precinct, they shall, after like notice, fill new appointments therein; but the time consumed by the board in completing such registration shall not exceed sixty working days in any county, except that in counties of more than nine hundred square miles in area, such board may consume seventy-five working days in completing the registration, and except that in counties in which there is any city of eight thousand or more inhabitants, the board may remain in session, in addition to the time hereinbefore prescribed, for not more than three successive weeks in each of such cities; and thereafter the board may sit from time to time in each of such cities not more than one weed in each month, and except that in the county of Jefferson the board may hold an additional session of not exceeding five consecutive days’ duration for each session, in each town or city of more than one thousand and less than eight thousand inhabitants.  No person shall be registered except at the county site or in the precinct in which he resides. The registrars shall issue to each person registered a certificate of registration.

Third–The Board of Registrars shall not register any person between the first day of August, nineteen hundred and two, and the Friday next preceding the day of election in November, nineteen hundred and two.  On Friday and Saturday next preceding the day of the election in November, nineteen hundred and two, they shall sit in the court house of each county during such days, and shall register all applicants having the qualifications prescribed by Section 180 of this Constitution and not disqualified under Section 182, who shall have reached the age of Twenty-one years after the first day of August, nineteen hundred and two, or who shall prove to the reasonable satisfaction of the board that, by reason of physical disability or unavoidable absence from the county, they had no opportunity to register prior to the first day of August nineteen hundred and two; and they shall not on such days register any other persons.  When there are two or more court houses in a county, the registrars may sit during such two days at the court house they may select, but shall give ten days notice, by  bills posted at each of the court houses, designated the court house at which they will sit.


4779

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Fourth— The Board of Registrars shall hold sessions at the court house of their respective counties during the entire third week in November, nineteen hundred and two, and for six working days next prior to the twentieth day of December, nineteen hundred and two, during which sessions they shall register all persons applying who possess the qualifications prescribed in Section 180 of this Constitution, and who shall not be disqualified under Section 182. In counties where there are two or More court houses the Board of Registrars shall divide the time equally between them. The Board of Registrars shall give notice of the time and place of such sessions by posting notices at each court house in their respective counties, and at each voting place, and at three other public places in the county, and by publication once a week for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper, if one be published in the county: such notices to be posted and such publications to be commenced as early as practicable in the first week of November, nineteen hundred and two. Failure on the part of the registrars to conform to the provisions of this article as to the giving of the required notices shall not invalidate any registration made by them.

Fifth–The Board of Registrars shall have power to examine under oath or affirmation all applicants for registration, and to take testimony touching the qualifications of such applicants. Each member of such board is authorized to administer the oath to be taken by the applicants and witnesses, which shall be in the following form, and subscribed by the board, namely :

"I solemnly swear (or affirm) that in the matter of the application of__ _____.for registration as an elector, I will speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help me God."

Any person who upon such examination makes any wilfully false statement in reference to any material matter touching the qualifications of any applicant for registration shall be guilty of perjury, and upon conviction thereof shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five year.

Sixth‑ The action of the majority of the Board of Registrars shall be the action of the board, and a majority of the board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of all business. Any person to whom registration is denied, shall have the right of appeal, without giving security for costs, within thirty days after such denial, by filing a petition in the Circuit Court or court of like jurisdiction held for the county in which he seeks to register, to have his qualifications as an elector determined. Upon the filing of the petition the clerk of the court shall give notice thereof to any Solicitor authorized to represent the State in said county, whose duty it shall be to appear and defend against the petition on behalf of the State. Upon such trial the court shall charge the jury only to what constituted the qualifications that entitled the applicant to become an elector at the time he applied for registration, and the jury shall determine the weight and effect of the evidence and return a verdict. From the judgment rendered an appeal will lie to the Supreme Court in favor of the petitioner, to be taken within thirty days. Final judgment in favor of the petitioner shall entitle him to registration as of the date of his application to the registrars.


4780                                          

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

Seventh‑ The Secretary of State shall, at the expense of the State, have prepared and shall furnish to the registrars and judges of probate of the several counties a sufficient number of registration books and of blank forms of the oaths, certificates of registration and notices required to be given by the registrars. The cost of the publication in newspapers of the notices required to be given by the registrars, shall be paid by the State, the bills therefor to be rendered to the Secretary of State and approved by him.

Eighth‑ Any person who registrars for another, or who registers more than once and any registrar who enters the name of any person on the list of registered voters, without such person having made application in person under oath on a form provided for that purpose, or who knowingly registers any person more than once, or who knowingly enters a name upon the registration list as the name of a voter, without any one of that name applying to register, shall be guilty of a felony, and upon conviction thereof shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five years.

187. The Board of Registrars in each county shall, on or before the first day of February, nineteen hundred and three, or as soon thereafter as practicable, file in the office of the judge of probate of their county a complete list, sworn to by them, of all persons registered in their county, showing the age of such persons so registered, with the precinct or ward in which each of such persons resides set opposite the naive of such person, and shall also file a like list in the office of the Secretary of State. The judge of probate shall, on or before the first day of March, nineteen hundred and three, or as soon thereafter as practicable, cause to be made from such list in duplicate, in the books furnished by the Secretary of State, an alphabetical list of precincts of the persons shown by the list of the registrars to have been registered in the county, and shall file one of such alphabetical lists in the office of the Secretary of State; for which services by the Judges of Probate compensation shall be provided by the Legislature. The Judges of Probate shall keep both the original list filed by the registrars and the alphabetical list made therefrom as records in the office of the Judge of Probate of the county. Unless he shall become disqualified under the provisions of this Article, any one who shall register prior to the first day of January, 1903, shall remain an elector during life, and shall not be required to register again unless he changes his residence, in which event he may register again on production of his certificate. The certificate of the registrars or of the Judge of Probate or of the Secretary of State shall be sufficient evidence to establish the fact of such life registration. Such certificate shall be issued free of charge to the elector, and the Legislature shall provide by law for the renewal of such certificate when lost, mutilated or destroyed.

188. From and after the first day of January, 1903, any applicant for registration nay be required to state under oath, to be administered by a registrar or by any person authorized by law to administer oaths, where he lived during the five years next preceding the time at which he applies to register, and the name or names by which he was known during that period, and the name of his employer or employes, if any, during such period.


4781

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Any applicant for registration who refuses to state such facts, or any of them, shall not be entitled to register, and any person so offering to register, who wilfully makes a false statement in regard to such matters or any of them, shall be guilty of perjury, and upon conviction thereof shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five years.

189. In the trial of any contested election, and in proceedings to investigate any election, no person other than a defendant shall be allowed to withhold his testimony on the ground that he may criminate himself or subject himself to public infancy; but such person shall not be prosecuted for any offense arising out of the transaction concerning which he testified, but may be prosecuted for perjury committed on such examination.

190. The Legislature shall pass laws not inconsistent with this Constitution to regulate and govern elections, and all such laws shall be uniform throughout the State; and shall provide by law for the manner of holding elections and of ascertaining the result of the same, and shall provide general registration laws, not inconsistent with the provisions of this Article, for the registration of all qualified electors front and after the first day of January, 1903. The Legislature shall also make provision by law, not inconsistent with this Article, for the regulation of primary elections, and for punishing frauds at the same, but shall not make primary elections compulsory. The Legislature shall by law provide for purging the registration list of the names of those who die, become insane, are convicted of crime or otherwise disqualified as electors under the provisions of this Constitution and of any names which may have been fraudulently entered on such lists by the registrars; provided, that a trial by jury may be had on the demand of any person whose name is proposed to be stricken from the list.

191. It shall be the duty of the Legislature to pass adequate laws giving protection against the evils arising from the use of intoxicating liquors at all elections.

192. Electors shall in all cases, except treason, felony or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections, or while going to or returning therefrom.

193. Returns of elections for members of the Legislature and for all civil officers who are to be commissioned by the Governor, except the Attorney-General, State Auditor, Secretary of State, State Treasurer, Superintendent of Education and Commissioner of Agriculture and Industries, shall be made to the Secretary of State

194. The poll tax mentioned in this Article shall be one dollar and fifty cents upon each male inhabitant of the State over the age of twenty-one years, and under the age of forty-five years, who would not now be exempt by law; but the Legislature is authorized to increase the maximum age fixed in this section to not more than sixty years. Such poll tax shall become due and payable on the first day of October in each year, and become delinquent on the first day of the next succeeding February, but no legal process, nor any fee or commission shall be allowed for the collection thereof. The tax collector shall make returns of poll tax collections separate from other collections.


4782                                          

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

195. Any person who shall pay the poll tax of another, or advance him money for that purpose in order to influence his vote, shall Be guilty of bribery, and upon conviction thereof shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for not less than one nor more than five years.

196. If any section or sub‑division of this article shall for any reason be, or be held by any court of competent jurisdiction, and of final resort, to be invalid, inoperative or void, the residue of this Article shall not be thereby invalidated or affected.

The President resumed the chair.

MR. FREEMAN–I have an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend the Article on Suffrage and Elections by adding thereto the following, that at the election provided herein for the ratification or rejection of this Constitution that none but legal white voters shall be eligible to vote, that in all other respects the existing election laws of this State shall govern in such election, that all laws and constitutional provision and parts of same in conflict herewith be and the same are hereby repealed and held to be null and void.

MR. FREEMAN‑ Mr. President, the amendment which I have had the honor to introduce should, in my judgment, be adopted by this Convention, it will preserve the eternal fitness of things.  It is on nearly every tongue, that the Constitution which this body will submit to the people of Alabama, can only be adopted if adopted at all by resorting to election methods peculiar to the Black Belt of this State, and which methods have fallen into so bad repute, that every one who desires ballot reform of some kind even if only to change the form of the methods and give novelty thereto.

Besides this amendment is the bold and manly way of doing things; it does not beat around the bush, nor attempt to accomplish anything by indirection.  Every one admires boldness, candor and open expressions.  Everybody knows that this convention has done its best to disfranchise the negro in Alabama, and to nullify the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution of the United States. Why, then should this Convention hesitate to openly declare what it has done by indirection?  Is it because that this body is afraid of the public opinion of the civilized world or ashamed of its own work?

I respectfully submit that it is enough to disfranchise the negro, without making him an involuntary party to his own disfranchisement. We should not call upon him in the Black Belt to be the victim of a ballot he never cast. Besides we should not impose this burden upon the Black Belt. And this Constitution, if adopted at all, should be adopted by unquestioned and unsoiled


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

methods. Otherwise there is sure to be discontent in Alabama and turmoil in her politics.

Mr. President, if the Constitution which this Convention will submit to the people of Alabama, cannot command the support of the white vote of the State, it should not be adopted. We should remember that a majority of the white counties voted against the calling of this Convention, and that it was only assembled because of a majority counted for the call in the Black Belt. It is the straw that breaks the camel's back. We should not use the negro vote of the Black Belt by means of a fraudulent count or otherwise to fasten a Constitution upon the State of Alabama objectionable to the white voters of the State. If the negro is a sufficiently qualified voter to do this he is a qualified voter in all other matters. This Constitution is not only objectionable to the white voters, but violative of the negro's right of suffrage as secured to him by the Constitution of this republic. If, sir, our work cannot receive the endorsement of a majority of the white voters of this State it should be rejected, and be wholly repudiated. You cannot dodge this issue by saying that the resolution violates the fifteenth amendment to the Constitution of the United States, for it is not as obnoxious to the fifteenth amendment as is the suffrage article in the proposed ,Constitution. That Article forever deprives him of the franchise, while this resolution only suspends its exercise in one instance to the end that the liberty of the white man in Alabama may not be destroyed. It simply excludes him from this election and leaves his rights unimpaired for the future.

The chances are that this proposed Constitution will be defeated if submitted alone to the white voters of the State; but that it will be adopted if submitted to all the voters, because of the force of the habit of the count in the Black Belt. Can Alabama afford to establish the fact that the organic law of the land is not the free, unbiased will of the people, but the produce of the machine, and the count. Can we afford to make proclamation of such a fact.  Besides, would not the discontent arising from such conduct emphasize itself in the form of Congressional action, setting aside the work of this Convention as a mockery and a fraud?  Is there not power in the nation to right so flagrant a wrong? Article IV, Section 4 of the Constitution of the United States guarantees to every State a government republican in form. Here we may encounter a sleeping giant, effectual for the protection of civil liberty in Alabama. Can it be said that this State will have a government either Democratic or Republican in form, when the organic law of the State has been saddled upon the people not by their own free will, but by fraud and an arbitrary disregard alike of their liberties and their vote. A Constitution adopted not by votes, but by the count, is not a government republican in form, nor democratic in theory, but is only the bastard off‑spring of despotism and anarchy.


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If this amendment is adopted the world will know what the people thing of our work here, but if defeated it will never be known and it will only see by the face of the election returns that 75,000 negroes in the Black Belt voted for their own disfranchisement?  This nobody will believe.  The only effect therefore, will be to satisfy every body that the organic law of Alabama which was conceived in partisanism, was brought forth in fraud.  Let this Convention do one bold and manly act— adopt this resolution, and submit the result of our labor to the white vote of the State.  Let us show to the world that we are sincere about white supremacy, and not solicitous about it only that some party advantage may come therefrom.  Let us do more to prevent the degradation of the State and its possible loss of representation, and maybe reconstruction by Congress.

Under the proposed Constitution we will have neither freedom nor white supremacy.  The registrars will destroy liberty and white supremacy will be swallowed up in the unequal representation accorded the Black Belt, where as now, one white vote is equal to five or six in the white counties.  We will have simply the supremacy of the machine.  Can we afford thus to treat our fellow citizens?  Can we again face our several constituencies, after we have denied to them the only chance they could have of securing to themselves and their posterity the blessings of civil liberty, by a defeat of the work of destruction which we have so recklessly  submitted for their forced adoption.  Let us give to the people the chance of self-preservation.

Now, on amendment offered, I demand the previous question and call for the ayes and noes.

MR. LONG (Walker)–I would like to ask the gentleman a  question.

MR. FREEMAN–I decline.

MR. LONG–I want to know who wrote that paper, the Vaughan or the Bingham faction.  (Applause.)

MR. deGRAFFENREID–I move to lay the amendment on the table.

THE PRESIDENT–The gentleman from Winston moves the previous question, and the gentleman from Hale moves to lay the amendment upon the table.  The motion to table has precedence over the motion for the previous question.

MR. FREEMAN–I ask for the ayes and noes on that.

The call was not sustained.

Upon a vote being taken the amendment was tabled.


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the adoption of the article as reported by the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony.

MR. BLACKWELL‑I would like to ask the Committee a question?

THE PRESIDENT‑‑‑ The gentleman had better address some one of the Committee.

MR. BLACKWELL‑I would like to address it to Mr. Spragins. It is relative to a provision on page 50. I would like to know what it is that towns in Jefferson County having from 1,000 to 8,000 inhabitants are to have these five extra days to register, and towns in no other county are to have them.

MR. SPRAGINS‑I presume it is because there are a number of large towns in that county.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑I will answer the gentleman. We canvassed all the counties in the State, and there were so many more cities in Jefferson County is the reason why an exception was made of that county. Now, as to the town of Huntsville in Madison County, it was said that there was ample time for that county, and so with Mobile County, but the population of Jefferson was so much greater that we thought it required an additional session of five days to give them ample time, the other towns in the State being amply provided for. There is no other county in the State, having the number of large towns that Jefferson has.

MR. BURNS (Dallas)‑I have in my hand an amendment which it may not be necessary to offer. I thought maybe the Committee would accept it.

THE PRESIDENT‑ Possibly they will after they hear it read:

The amendment was read as follows:

Amend Article VIII, Section 186, Subdivision 4, line 18, page 51, by striking out "November" and inserting "October" in lieu thereof, so as not to conflict with line 12, Section 46. Article IV, page 11.

MR. BURNS‑ What I want to call attention to is that the election is set for the first Tuesday after the first Monday in 1902, which would be the 6th day of November, and then over in this Article it says that the Registrars shall hold during the third week of November, 1902.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑That is all right. We provide here for the registration of all voters for the election in November 1902. Then we provide for registration up to 1903, of such as may become of age afterwards, or who have escaped registration; that


4786                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

is registration fur a subsequent election, that is on the life registration list. This registration prior to November, 1902, is to qualify all parties to vote at that election. After that election is over, we go on then and have a permanent registration.

MR. BURNS‑ If it is understood that way, all right. I cannot understand it that way myself, because just after this election, you call together those same registrars, who have just been engaged in registration the month before.

MR. COLEMAN ‑We are admitting to permanent registration all who are entitled to it.

MR. BURNS‑‑I will ask the consent of the Convention to withdraw my amendment.

The consent was given.

MR. BURNS‑I have another amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

Amend Article VIII., Section 182. line 15. page 48, by inserting between the words "persons" and "those" the words "all illegitimates whose disabilities as such have not been removed by the Governor or some Chancellor."

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Jefferson.

MR. BURNS‑ Now, Mr. President, this is no time of day to make a speech, or attempt to make one, which I generally do, so I shall not attempt to make a speech. This is a very serious question. This is question that appeals to the patriotism, morality and religion of every member of this Convention. Not only for our immediate purposes, but the destinies in part of our posterity, depend largely upon this work. You take a delegate to this Convention who is a sober, sensible man, and ask him to give you a reason why this word should not be, placed in this suffrage plank, and he will tell you that "I believe you are right. Burns, and I believe I will vote with you," but you bring it up here in public, and some man’s mind will go way back yonder to some fellow he has heard of, who might possibly be disqualified if this word is inserted in this suffrage platform, but how many can he hear of?  How many worthy men in the State of Alabama would be debarred even if he did not have an opportunity to have his disabilities removed by the Governor or Chancellor.  Here are 155 representative men, 155 of the best men in Alabama, and that 155 men cannot challenge you, I challenge the members upon this floor to even show me one in some of the counties.  I challenge these 155 men before me to show me 155 respectable men in the State of Alabama that this clause would disfranchise.


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Then what do you say when you vote? I am prepared to show you that more than 48,000 persons who should not be allowed to vote will be debarred by this one word. Reflect, look over your constituency, look throughout the State, search the records, interview your colleagues, and see what you have been proposing to do. You propose, because that distinguished jurist who headed this Committee had heard of a man in a neighboring county that it might disbar or disfranchise, even when it is provided that that same roan can have his disabilities removed, to table, on his motion. the amendments containing this word. That was the argument in full. It might disfranchise some man with possibly a thousand or two or five thousand or ten thousand dollars. If your sons and daughters have to be raised to look up in reverence and respect to men who came into the world against the morals and religious sentiments of this world, and in violation of the statutes of Alabama, we are traveling fast to ruin. But there is a provision that saves at least the dignity of the State, providing that his disabilities may be relieved by the Governor or the Chancellor. Do you know an illegitimate?  I see some ladies in the gallery, but it is their fault if they hear Bible language and legal terms. Shall a man who is ashamed of his origin, whom his neighbors know to be an illegitimate shall a man of mixed blood, shall all these illegitimates who ought not to be allowed to vote be the peers and competitors of your children and your children's children, because four or five or eight or ten or fifty or sixty or 100 or 200 men in Alabama are ashamed to go and ask the Governor to relieve their disabilities. If a man is an illegitimate and his neighbors know he is, he will not be ashamed to go with his best neighbors or send his best friend or best lawyer to interview the Governor, or to come into the Court House and see the Chancellor and be relieved of that small disability. It would be a confession on his part, a confession before men and before high Heaven, and would be a stimulant to him to be a better citizen, instead of dodging and hiding. If he wants to dodge and hide, let him pull up and move to some other county or some other State. All the trouble in this country comes from such characters as would be knocked out, The statistics from Washington City, Republican Washington City, with all the officers Republican and all the officers making excuses for negroes and Republicans, show that one-third of the population in all of Washington District is of a different race. Two-thirds of that one-third fill the records in the police courts thereof. Over two-thirds of the crime committed even in Washington, the Capital of the United States, reigned over by Republican officials, where all manner of excuses are made, so the reports show, are committed by this one-third of the population.

Then, another thing, (I cannot help listening to suggestions), it will disfranchise, as the gentleman has just said, nearly every one whom we came here to disfranchise, and whom it is proper to


4788                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

disfranchise.   (Applause).  We have come down to the edge of the water, waded in waist deep, now up to the neck. There are some still on the banks, sticking their toes in to see if the water is too cold.  We have not come like the brave boys of my day came to the creek or river, and throw off your shirt and breeches and jump in. We were sent here to kill snakes. When I was a boy I was a snake hunter as well as a bird hunter (Laughter), and I have killed a good many innocent black snakes, and coach whips, and chicken snakes, and house snakes that will sleep with you and not harm you; but I always hated to bruise the head of one of these, but it was always my delight to find a rattler with his mouth open and his fangs; ready, a rattler who has control of nearly all of the other snakes, especially of his color and of his pedigree, a rattler educated and warmed at home by the fires, by smiles, by the approbation of the best white citizens, Democrats, and supported at the North by white Republicans who have never had any use for Alabama, or the Democrats in Alabama. That rattler with his mouth open, but his tail not giving you warning, his fangs are here and he sends out young rattlers every summer, twelve or fifteen hundred, two thousand; yea, and more. Those young ones come out and among them gather a great quality of damsels— some from Massachusetts, some from Rhode Island, and some from Louisiana, some from Texas, some from Cuba and I suppose some from the Philippines. very few from those countries, however.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The time of the gentleman has expired.

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I move that his time be extended ten minutes more.

MR. BURNS‑ If there is a no vote from a respectable delegate. I will respectfully decline. (Laughter).

Upon a vote being taken, there were several noes.

MR. BURNS‑ Well, I would like to see who they are to see if they are respectable. (Laughter).

The motion to extend the time of the gentleman from Dallas was carried.

MR. BURNS‑A good many measures have been carried in this Convention, Mr. President, I am sorry to say, not by a Democratic vote. A good many close issues have been carried in this Convention by small majorities, and a certain element held the balance of power, and consequently when the vote was declared by our distinguished President, it was not the Democratic sentiment of Democratic Alabama. This is no place to make a political speech, and I do not propose to enter into politics, but I propose to start like I always start. We Democrats have been sent here by Democrats, and have met here and acted as Democrats, and Demo‑


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

crats have almost finished the Constitution to be submitted to the people, and Democrats must frame it and fix it and submit it to the Democracy of the State, if they want it endorsed by the best people of Alabama. But this is not a political speech.

The rattlers and the moccasins and the spreading adders, all the poisonous and venomous snakes still lie around ; some even on your curb stones. We have not placed the hand of Justice upon them. In my opinion, but I am not here to criticize men who are better than I am. I know there are plenty of men, members of this Convention, who are better men than I am, and I believe they are as good Democrats as I am, and I believe they will continue to be as good Democrats. I believe they are as much interested in the future of their race, in the prosperity of their posterity, even more so, than I am. I did come here with other gentlemen, hoping and praying, though the prayers of the wicked availeth not, hoping and praying that before we passed out. especially we ex-Confederates, that we would leave our State in a condition that the white men could go untrammeled and unmolested and without fear and trepidation, and settle all affairs among themselves without the rattle snakes, moccasins, spreading adders and all poisonous and venomous snakes holding the balance of power. We can do it.  We have no threats coining from my county. If you did not have as good a Constitution framed as you have, I would support it, (applause), because when my people won't go with me, by the living God, I am going with my people. I have preached the doctrine, the correct doctrine, pure democratic doctrine. If they do not heed me, if they hear me not and will not abide by what I say and endorse it. then I will join with them, and I will out Herod them in advocacy of what has been done here today, and that means something. That means something. I am the humble and insignificant representative of men who mean something, of men who, in 1872, when all the cities were dodging around and when this State stood trembling in the balance, caused 18 white men to carry an election with not a democratic manager of the election and over eight hundred and forty carpet baggers, scallawagers, thieves, rattle snakes and moccasins. I have never used the word nigger, but I want to see this Convention go through without putting it in the Constitution anywhere, and I believe it will do it, although my distinguished friend Watts has urged it upon this Convention. Let us have no "race. color or previous condition."  Let us take the present condition, and look to the future condition.  Let us live in the present and work for the future, and work for the good of those who are younger than we are, and those that are to follow them. That is the height of manhood and patriotism.  Lay down self. We have already laid down self in the black belt and have been doing it since 1872. We came up here in high hope that this Constitution would relieve us, so that we could go back and tell our boys, and all those that are twelve years old and up‑


4790                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

wards have already been spoiled.  I have three boys and every one of them has been spoiled on that question, if there is such a thing as spoiling.  I know hundreds that have been spoiled, and I do hope and as I already have said, I did pray, and I do hope and pray that this would be done, although my prayers may not be heard, and I believe they are not heard, because I am not of that caliber of character to approach the throne of Grace.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The time of the gentleman from Dallas has expired.

MR. BURNS‑I hope, Mr. President, that this will be given a fair consideration and a fair vote.

MR. CASE‑I move to table the amendment offered by the gentleman from Dallas.

MR. HEFLIN‑ On that I call for the ayes and noes.

The call was not sustained.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the motion to table the amendment offered by the gentleman from Dallas.

Upon a vote being taken a division was called for, and by a vote of 72 ayes arid 44 noes the motion to table the amendment prevailed.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑I desire to offer an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend first subdivision of Section 181, page 47, by striking out the words 'being physically able to work,' in line 24, and inserting in lieu the words `and are physically unable to work and those who can read and write any article of the Constitution of the United States and.' and by striking out all of said subdivision at the top of page 48 beginning with the word `provided' and ending with the word `infirmity.' "

MR. COLEMAN‑ It will then read this way: "Those who can read and write any article of the Constitution of the United States in the English language and are physically unable to work and those who can read and write any article of the Constitution of the United States and have worked or been regularly engaged, etc."

Unless you have some such provision as that, there is no provision for those parties voting at all who are physically unable to work. It is put in there to let those who can read and write, and yet who are physically unable to work vote. It is put in there to qualify them for voting, and that makes it perfectly clear, and then there is no necessity for the last line, which was put in there to cure the infirmity provided for by this amendment of mine. It


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

makes it perfectly clear and there is no trouble about understanding it.

MR. deGRAFFENREID‑ May I ask the gentleman from Greene a question?

MR. COLEMAN— Yes.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑ Suppose a man is unable to read and write by reason of existence of physical disability, blind or palsied, under the amendment those people could not vote.

MR. COLEMAN‑ Here it is— wait until we get through" and those who are unable to read and write if such disability is due to physical infirmity."

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman from Greene asks unanimous consent that the amendment offered by him be incorporated.  Is there objection?

Objection is made.

MR. BURNS‑ Will the gentleman permit a question.

MR. COLEMAN‑ Yes.

MR. BURNS‑I wanted to know of the distinguished chairman of the sub‑committee if he thought $2 per day was enough for registrars to pay hack hire at the polls, etc.

MR. COLEMAN— We will come to that later.

The purpose of this amendment is simply to provide for those who ought to vote, but who cannot work. It is to provide for those who are competent to read and write and yet are physically unable to work; and then to provide for those who cannot read and write, because blind or palsied or something, and would be competent otherwise. We did not wish to cut out anybody, because blind or unable to work, while otherwise qualified. That is the whole purpose of the amendment. If anybody can fix it up better, so as to let these people in and carry out our pledges, we would like to hear it.

Mr. Pettus took the chair.

MR. PROCTOR‑I would like to have that read as it stands when amended.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The Secretary will read the Section as it would appear when amended.

The Secretary read the Section as amended.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is on the adoption of the amendment.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. deGRAFFENREID-‑I move that this particular Section be referred to the Committee on Suffrage and Elections, to report a Section to this Convention when it meets at 3:30 o'clock.

Upon a vote being taken the motion was adopted.

MR. SANDERS (Limestone)‑I ask unanimous consent to introduce a short resolution to be referred to the Committee on Harmony before we adjourn.

Unanimous consent was accorded.

The Secretary read the resolution as follows:

Resolution No. 326, by Mr. Sanders:

Resolved, That all officers elected by the people in the respective counties of this State, whose term of office is for four years, and expire in the year 1904, are hereby continued in office until their successors shall have been elected at the general election in 1906.

Referred to Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony of the Whole Constitution.

MR. LONG (Walker)‑I will call attention that in the Suffrage Report on page 48, in line 3, it says "or husband of a woman."  It seems to me that the verbiage is very bad. A man is not supposed to be the husband of anything but a woman (laughter), and it goes on and in line 5 it says "or the husband of any woman."  That might be all right in Utah in the time of Brigham Young; when a husband was a husband to any woman (laughter), or the husband of a great many women, but it should be changed to read something like this: A man or elector whose wife is the owner of, etc.  A man cannot be husband of anything but a woman. None of us would be satisfied to be husband of anything but a woman. (Laughter.)

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ Does the gentleman offer an amendment.

MR. LONG‑ No sir, I just wish to submit it to the Committee.

MR. REYNOLDS (Chilton)‑I have an amendment I desire to offer.

The Secretary read the amendment as follows:

Amend Subdivision 2 of Section 181 by adding at the end "Provided, that the owner in good faith in his own right, or the husband of a woman who is the owner in good faith in her own right of $300 in value of real and personal property, upon which the taxes have been paid may also register and vote if he is otherwise qualified in this Constitution."


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION,1901

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is upon the adoption of the amendment offered by the gentleman from Chilton.

MR. REYNOLDS‑I want to call the attention of the Convention to the fact that a great many people in Alabama believe if a man is worth $300 that he can vote. I don't know what the intention of the Committee is, I don't know what idea they had, when they said a man must have $300 of personal property or real estate. I want to say that I do not believe it will benefit the white men in North Alabama. I have taken particular pains to examine the tax books in the beat in which I reside. We have 240 white voters in my beat and there is not but one man in my beat with an assessment of $304 of personal property, except merchants and men in business, and I believe it may be found so all over North Alabama. I believe that that provision in the Constitution will only benefit the negro in the Black Belt. You find that in the Black Belt the negro buys a mule, the landlord sells to him and takes a mortgage on it to make him take better care of it, and he is the only man in Alabama today that it will benefit, if you permit this to go into the Constitution. Why is it necessary for us to separate the two and say a man must be either worth $300 in personal property or real estate? A man with $299 of personal property will not be able to vote, and the man with $299 worth of real estate will not be able to vote. I hope the Committee will accept this amendment, because I want you to know that in North Alabama there are hundreds of white men who cannot vote under this qualification. There are but very few of them who have $300 in real estate, except where they have forty acres of land, and very few have $300 worth of personal property. I would like to ask the Committee to explain who will be benefitted, or for this Convention to say who will be benefited. I have another amendment on the Secretary's desk. I realize that it is almost impossible, and too late to offer an amendment.   I fear that if the Lord's Prayer were offered as an amendment, it would be voted down, but I want to call attention to another fact, when the provision for registrars was before the Convention the distinguished gentleman from Tuscaloosa fought for the resolution, which was voted down, to have registrars visit each beat in the county two or three days. In my county we have large precincts, though there are butt nine beats, many of these beats have two boxes, and I think it would be only fair that the registrars should visit both boxes in the precinct.

 

MR. BEDDOW ‑I rise to a point of order. The gentleman is not addressing himself to the amendment, but talking about registration of voters.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM–The gentleman will confine his remarks to the pending amendment.


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OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. REYNOLDS‑I stated I had two amendments there. I do not want to take up the time of the Convention. I am not a public speaker. I will be glad to have the Committee explain who it will benefit. I do not think it will benefit the white men of North Alabama.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from Chilton.

Upon a vote being taken a division, was called for.

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑If I understand the amendment, I am in favor of it, but I do not thing the Convention understands it. I call for a reading of the amendment.

MR. REYNOLDS‑I want the Chairman of the Committee to explain that proposition.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The vote is being taken and it is too late for further discussion unless by unanimous consent.

MR. ASHCRAFT‑I ask for unanimous consent that the Chairman may explain that proposition.

The Secretary again read the amendment.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑It is already in the second section.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑If you will have the motion of the delegate from Hale read, the delegates of this Convention will see that none of these matters are before them. They have just taken a vote by which the whole section is recommitted to the Committee.

MR. HEFLIN‑I move that the amendment be sent to that Committee.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The journal shows it was moved that Section 181, on motion of Mr. deGraffenreid be recommitted ‑the entire section‑ and not as the Chair thought, a subdivision. The entire section has been recommitted to the Committee on Suffrage and Election, and unanimous consent is asked that the amendment which was out of order, go to the same Committee. Is there objection?

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I move that the rules be suspended and that the amendment be sent to the Committee on Suffrage.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The amendment will go to the Committee on Suffrage by unanimous consent.

MR. CARMICHAEL (Colbert)‑I move that we do now  adjourn.


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Upon a vote being taken a division was called for and further vote being taken, there were ayes 45, noes 44, and the Convention thereupon adjourned.____________

AFTERNOON SESSION

The Convention met pursuant to adjournment, there being ninety-nine delegates present upon the call of the roll.

MR. ASHCRAFT‑I never have asked unanimous consent of the Convention, but I will do so in order to introduce an ordinance.

Unanimous consent was accorded.

Ordinance No. 461 by Mr. Ashcraft:

AN ORDINANCE

To provide for the qualification and registration of electors who shall participate in the municipal election to be held in the city of Florence on the first Tuesday in December, 1901.

Be it ordained by the people of Alabama in Convention assembled, that no person shall be entitled to vote in the election for municipal officers to be held in the city of Florence on the first Tuesday in December, 1901, who does not possess the qualifications required of electors by Section 180 of the Constitution framed by this Convention, and the Mayor and Aldermen of said city are authorized and directed to appoint three registrars in said city who shall register, for the purposes of said election, the electors in said city in the manner, as nearly as may be, provided for registration by Section 186 of said Constitution. Said registration shall begin on the 18th day of November, 1901, and shall continue for two weeks.

Referred to Committee on Suffrage and Elections.

Leave of absence was given to Mr. Burnett of Conecuh for tomorrow.

MR. HEFLIN (Randolph)‑I ask unanimous consent to make a report from the Committee on Schedule and Printing.

Consent was given.

The Secretary read the report as follows:

Ordinance No. 459 introduced by the Committee on Harmony and referred to the Committee on Schedule and Printing from that committee with favorable report.


4796                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

AN ORDINANCE.

To appropriate $143.75 for the payment of C. B. Brown and the Alabama Printing Company for services performed for the State of Alabama for the use of the Constitutional Convention.

Section 1. Be it ordained by the people of Alabama, on Convention assembled, that there be, and is hereby, appropriated out of any money in the State treasury not otherwise appropriated, the sum of $143.75, to be paid the Alabama Printing Company and C. B. Brown for services performed for the State of Alabama for use of this Convention, as follows

Sec. 2. The State Auditor is hereby directed to draw his warrant on the State Treasurer in favor of C. B. Brown for the sum of $30 for typewriting done by him for the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony of the Whole Constitution and the said Auditor is also directed to draw his warrant on the State Treasurer in favor of the Alabama Printing Company for the sum of $113.75 for printing three hundred copies of the report of said committee for the use of this Convention.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The report will lie on the table and be printed.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑‑I ask unanimous consent to make a report from the Committee on Suffrage and Elections.

Leave was granted.

Mr. President.

The Committee can Suffrage and Elections directs me to report the following provision as a substitute for the first sub‑division of Section 181. They further direct me to report the remainder of said Section 181 without further modification or change.

Thos. W. Coleman, Chairman.

Subdivision for the first subdivision of Section 181.

First‑ Those who can read and write any part of the Constitution of the United States in the English language, and who are physically unable to work, and those who can read and write any article of the Constitution of the United States in the English language and have worked or been regularly enraged in some lawful employment. business or occupation, trade or calling for the greater part of the twelve months next preceding the time they offer to register, and those who are unable to read and write, if such inability is due solely to physical disability; or

MR. COLEMAN‑ Mr. Chairman, the Committee on Suffrage and Elections met as directed by the motion of the gentleman from


4797

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Hale and adopted that report. They have considered all the other questions, and came to the unanimous conclusion that all the questions which have been agitated now have been discussed freely before the Convention, and so far as the committee is concerned they are satisfied with the report just as it has been submitted and adopted by the Convention, and as submitted by the Committee on Harmony, with the exception of changing solve phraseology of mere words, correcting orthography. So far as the question propounded by the delegate from Chilton, I have simply to say that it is impossible to frame a Constitution to suit every class of office holders in Alabama or for every beat and county in this State. 'The reasons for all these things were given full discussion when this question was before the Convention as a whole. While the gentleman cannot seen any reason for this provision as applying to his county, there are many sections of the State where it does apply and beneficially. Any other modification or change would let in a large class of voters in other parts of the State of Alabama whom we think ought not to exercise the suffrage.

MR. FOSTER‑ If a man who owns $300 of personal property be allowed to vote, or $300 worth of real property be allowed to vote, isn't it right for, the man who owns $250 worth of personal property and $250 worth of real property to be allowed to vote also ?

MR. COLEMAN‑ That looks very well upon its face, but personal property is changeable. Down with us a great many men own $300, $100, or $250. You have to fix a standard somewhere, and we have selected three hundred dollars as most applicable. We have to make uniform laws. If you put it at two hundred and fifty dollars, they would say two hundred and forty and ten ‑the limit must be fixed somewhere. Three hundred dollars seems to he popular with some States. and after due consideration. we thought it was the most suitable standard, and therefore it was adopted. It has been suggested to me where there are only forty acres of land and they live on it, they are competent to vote without reference to value, if it were only forty dollars, they are competent. The Committee first thought to put it at eighty acres, but some delegates  thought, from the white counties, that it would exclude too many. We have given them time to learn how to read and write to get in under the other provision under the permanent plan.

MR. PILLANS‑ Does the gentleman think we can go before the people of this State with the proposition that where this state of facts exists, a thrifty son is not fit to be a voter and the thriftless are, to wit: that when a man leaves four children and one of them gets twenty dollars worth of land in the shape of forty acres, and one of them gets three hundred dollars worth of land, another gets less than three hundred dollars worth of merchandise and


4798                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

another gets two hundred and seventy-five dollars worth of land and two hundred and seventy-five dollars worth of mules and plows, that the least thrifty of those sons, who has made the least and pays the least in taxes to the State shall he allowed to vote, when the one who most assists the State is not deemed to be a fit person to exercise the suffrage?

MR. COLEMAN‑I would say that before anyone could give an intelligent answer to that long question, he would have to have it written out and before him.

MR. PILLANS‑I will write it out for the gentleman. I had thought from his long service on the bench he could retain the question.

MR. COLEMAN‑I wish to say, moreover, as the gentleman has referred to my long service on the bench that I do not see that has got anything to do with the question before us and I never could appreciate any personal allusions to a man's personal qualifications in the argument of great questions in this Convention and have not from the very beginning. All these questions were here before us. They have been discussed and passed upon, and it was an easy matter to have raised them at that time. The objections have all been heard and there must be in end somewhere.  If the gentleman wishes to make any amendments, let him propose his amendments. We propose to do our duty as we best understand it as a Committee. That we have done. We have convened and considered this question again and the Committee are unanimously of the opinion that this is the best solution of the question, considering all the sections of the State. We have the permanent plan by which every white man can get in and we have the temporary plan by which the life voters come in, that is the provision for soldiers and the descendants of soldiers, and understanding clause.

Then we have the permanent plan afterwards, by which a person is permitted to vote who owns a certain amount of property or who acquires a certain amount of education, and they have from now until 1904, perhaps, ample time for every man to acquire sufficient education to become a voter.

MR. REYNOLDS (Chilton)‑will the gentleman answer a question.

MR. COLEMAN‑ If the gentleman will answer, do you propose to support the ratification of the Constitution?

MR. REYNOLDS‑I do not know.

MR. COLEMAN‑ You do not know? I prefer to get advice from the friends of the Constitution.


4799

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

MR. REYNOLDS‑ Does the gentleman decline to answer my question?

MR. COLEMAN‑I do. I do not care to be interrupted by anybody who does not propose to stand by the Constitution. I am willing to receive suggestions from its friends but not from its enemies, and I now move to lay the amendment upon the table.

MR. HEFLIN‑ And upon that I call for the ayes and noes.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will call the attention of the gentleman from Greene that the Chair is advised that the amendment was referred to the Committee.

MR. COLEMAN‑ We have reported. .

THE PRESIDENT‑ You have not reported the amendment.

MR. COLEMAN‑ The report is that they declined to make any further alteration.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is upon the adoption of the report.

MR. O'NEAL (Lauderdale)‑I move the previous question.

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I move that the report of the Committee be not concurred in.

MR. MALONE‑I would like to ask a question. I am just trying to bet at the practical result of this, and I think at the same thing the gentleman from Greene is trying to get at. It is this: In certain sections of the country the people are put to the necessity of having their property divided, part of it consisting of real estate and part of it personal property. In other places it would of necessity be entirely personal property. Would not the working of that be that in communities where most of the property is personal property, to require the ownership of $300, and in the other sections it will take $600.

MR. COLEMAN‑I do not understand that.

MR. MALONE‑ If a man owns forty acres of land in the country, would not he of necessity have several hundred dollars worth of personal property?

MR. COLEMAN‑ If he owns forty acres of land and lives on it, it does not make any difference whether he owns any personal property ‑or not.

MR. MALONE‑ If I am a young man and live in a town and have no real estate and own $350 worth of personal property I can vote and the man with $550 worth equally divided cannot vote.


4800                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. COLEMAN‑ My answer to all that is this: Those people occupying the position you say, are permanently registered under this temporary plan, and after that time, they are expected under the liberal provisions we have made to obtain an education, and be able to read and write.

MR. MALONE‑ All I am trying to get at is that in one section is will take $300 and in another it will take $600 worth of property?

MR. COLEMAN‑I don't think that.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will suggest to the gentleman from Greene that the question is on the adoption of the amendment reported by the Committee.

MR. COLEMAN‑I move its adoption, and on that I move the previous question.

MR. PILLANS‑ If the gentleman will permit I have written out my question.

MR. HARRISON‑I regret that I was not apprised of the meeting of the Committee on Suffrage, the gentleman having stated the report was unanimous. It was perhaps my fault that I did not know of the meeting, but I am not in favor of that report.  I did not hear it discussed, but I have heard enough of the proposed amendment to satisfy me that it is not right to make a distinction between property holders as has been clearly exemplified—

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will suggest to the gentleman from Lee that that is not the question before the Convention.

MR. HARRISON‑I propose an amendment. I—

THE PRESIDENT‑ There is an amendment pending.

MR. HARRISON‑ But I offer an amendment to it.

MR. O'NEAL‑I raise the point of order that the gentleman from Greene has moved the previous question on the report of the Committee, and that is the question before the House.

MR. HARRISON‑ The Chair himself stated that the question was upon the adoption of the report of the Committee.

THE PRESIDENT‑As the Chair understands the report of the Committee, it recommends a substitute for another subdivision upon the question of the right to vote.

MR. HARRISON‑ And recommends, further, as I understood the report, it covers the entire Section. It recommends that the second subdivision stand as it is, and I move to amend that report by offering an amendment to the second subdivision.


4801

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman from Greene moved the adoption of the amendment reported by the Committee, and upon that moved the previous question, and until the previous question is disposed of, an amendment would not be in order.

MR. HARRISON‑ The Chair did not so state in putting the question.

THE PRESIDENT‑‑ The Journal corrected the Chair and shows that the gentleman from Greene did move the previous question, although the Chair failed to catch his motion as he sat down.

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I rise to a point of inquiry. The Committee has made no report except that they say they decline to make any change. Now, an amendment was submitted to that Committee. They say they simply decline to make any change, and my motion is that their report be not concurred in, and I want to ask the Chair if my motion would not have to be put first.

MR. O'NEAL— I raise the point of order —

THE PRESIDENT‑-The Clerk will read the report again.

The report was read as follows:

"The Committee on Suffrage and Elections directs me to report the above provision as a substitute for the first subdivision of Section 181. They further direct me to report the remainder of said Section 181 without further modification or change."

Substitute for the first subdivision of Section 181:

"First‑-Those who can read and write any Article of the Constitution in the English language and who are physically unable to work; those who can read and write any Article of the Constitution of the United States in the English language, and have worked or been regularly engaged in some lawful employment, business or occupation, trade or calling, for the greater part of the twelve months next preceding the time they offer to register, and those who are unable to read and write if such inability is due solely to physical disability or— "

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will state the question before the Convention. As the Chair understands it, the question would be upon the adoption of the substitute or amendment reported by the Committee. The other amendment was referred to the Committee and has not been reported by the Committee, and the only way that amendment could be brought before the Convention would be by a motion here to recall it from the Committee. The pending question is upon the substitute reported by the Committee for the entire subdivision, and upon that the gentleman from Greene demands the previous question. The question is shall the main question be now put.


4802                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I desire to make a motion to table the report of the Committee and do it for the purpose of making another motion to recall the amendment from the Committee and take it up for the consideration.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The pending amendment relates to an entirely different matter as the Chair understands it.

MR. HEFLIN‑ Then I want to make my motion at the proper time.

THE PRESIDENT‑ Does the gentleman move to table the substitute reported by the Committee? It is a different subdivision to that referred to by the amendment offered by the gentleman from Chilton.

MR. HEFLIN‑I ask for a division of the question.

MR. HARRISON‑ Would it not be in order after we have acted on the report of the Committee to then offer an amendment to the Section.

THE PRESIDENT‑ It seems to the Chair it would be.

MR. HARRISON‑ There will be no objection if that is the ruling.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair feels gratified. (Laughter.)  The question is shall the main question be now put.

Upon a vote being taken the main question was ordered.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question now will be upon the adoption of the substitute reported by the Committee for the first subdivision.

Upon a vote being taken the substitute reported by the Committee was adopted.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is on the adoption of the subdivision as amended.

Upon a vote being taken the subdivisions as amended was adopted.

MR. HARRISON‑I offer an amendment to the second subdivision of Section 181.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend Section 181, second subdivision, by adding in line nine after the word `property' and before the words `in this State' the words `or of real and personal property.' "

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question will be upon the amendment offered by the gentleman from Lee.


4803

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

MR. HARRISON‑ In support of that amendment I desire to say it is in effect the same as the amendment offered by the delegate from Chilton, but it comes in more appropriately, I think, there, and makes less change and covers exactly the same grounds.  The simple effect of it is that a party may be entitled to vote who owns and pays taxes upon three hundred dollars worth of property whether it be real, personal or mixed.

The section as amended will read:

"Second‑ The owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of a woman who is the owner in good faith, in her own right, of forty acres of land situate in this State, upon which they reside, or the owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of any woman who is the owner in good faith, in her own right, of real estate, situate in this State assessed for taxation at the value of three hundred dollars or more, or the owner in good faith, in his own right, or the husband of a woman who is the owner in good, faith, in her own right, of personal property or of real and personal property in this State assessed for taxation at three hundred dollars or more; provided, that the taxes due upon such real or personal property for the year next preceding the year in which he offers to register shall have been paid. unless the assessment shall have been legally contested and is undetermined.

I offer that because it appears to be fair and just.

MR. GRANT— Don't your amendment relate only to the husband of a wife who owns that property?

MR. HARRISON‑ No, sir.

MR. GRANT‑ Husband of a woman—

MR. HARRISON‑ The original report would be subject to some criticism. I think, Mr. President, that the matter has been fully discussed. If it is not right, we do not want it. We cannot justify any such proposition. It has been demonstrated by the question propounded by the delegate from Mobile and others. It is so simple, the Convention ought to understand it. This whole matter is a question of right and wrong, and I do not wish to be put in the position of subscribing to it. If it ought to be larger, the Committee ought to say so, and I do not see how we can justify going before the people, and if one man own part real estate and part personal property, and say he is disqualified. He may own double the amount and yet be disqualified. It. is so unjust on its face. that I trust the Convention, notwithstanding the tendency not to make amendments, will correct this, because I do not feel that we can sustain our position with any such proposition as has been incorporated in this part of the report.

MR. HEFLIN (Chambers)‑I move the previous question upon the adoption of the amendment.


4804                                          

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. deGRAFFENREID— I move to lay the amendment upon the table.

MR. PILLANS‑I call for the ayes and noes.

Upon a call of the roll, the vote resulted as follows:

AYES.

Messrs. President,

Graham, of Montgomery,

O'Neal (Lauderdale),

Altman,

Greer, of Perry,

Parker (Cullman),

Barefield,

Hood,

Reese,

Carnathon,

Jones, of Wilcox,

Sanders,

Chapman,

Kirk,

Smith, Mac. A.,

Cobb,

Knight,

Sorrell,

Coleman, of Greene,

Macdonald,

Stewart,

Coleman, of Walker,

McMillan (Wilcox),

Vaughan,

deGraffenreid,

Miller (Wilcox),

Willaims (Elmore),

Glover,

Norwood,

Wilson (Wash'gton).

Total‑30.

NOES.

Ashcraft,

Graham, of Talladega,

Mulkey,

Banks,

Grant,

Murphree,

Bartlett,

Grayson,

Norman,

Beavers,

Greer, of Calhoun,

Oates,

Beddow,

Haley,

O'Neill (Jefferson),

Bethune,

Handley,

Opp,

Blackwell,

Harrison,

O'Rear,

Boone,

Heflin, of Chambers,

Palmer,

Brooks,

Heflin, of Randolph,

Parker (Elmore),

Burns,

Henderson,

Pearce,

Byars,

Hodges,

Pettus,

Cardon,

Howell,

Phillips,

Carmichael, of Colbert,

Howze,

Pillans,

Case,

Inge,

Porter,

Cofer,

Jackson,

Proctor,

Craig,

Jones, of Bibb,

Reynolds (Chilton).

Cunningham,

Jones, of Hale,

Rogers (Lowndes),

Davis, of DeKalb,

Jones, of Montgomery,

Rogers (Sumter),

Davis, of Etowah,

Kyle,

Samford,

Dent,

Ledbetter,

Searcy,

Duke,

Lomax,

Selheimer,

Eley,

Lowe (Lawrence).

Sentell,

Eyster,

McMillan (Baldwin),

Sloan,

Fitts,

Malone,

Spears,

Fletcher,

 

Martin,

Foshee,

Merrill,

Studdard,

Foster,

Miller (Marengo),

Waddell,

Freeman,

Moody,

Walker,


4805

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

Watts,

White,

Wilson (Clarke),

Weatherly,

Whiteside,

Winn,

Total‑90.

ABSENT OR NOT VOTING.

Almon,

Kirkland,

Robinson,

Browne,

Leigh,

Sanford,

Bulger,

Locklin,

Smith (Mobile),

Burnett,

Long (Butler),

Smith, Morgan ?VI.,

Carmichael, of Coffee,

Long (Walker),

Sollie,

Cornwall,

Lowe (Jefferson),

Tayloe,

Espy,

Maxwell,

Thompson,

Ferguson,

Morrisette,

Weakley,

Gilmore,

NeSmith,

Willet,

Hinson,

Pitts,

Williams (Barbour),

Jenkins,

Renfro,

Williams (Marengo).

King,

Reynolds (Henry),

There being 29 ayes and 90 noes, the motion to table was lost.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question recurs upon the amendment.

MR. BEDDOW‑I call for the previous question.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The previous question has been moved; the question is, shall the main question be put?

The main question was ordered.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is on the adoption of the amendment offered by the gentleman from Lee.

Upon a vote being taken, the amendment was adopted.

MR. GRANT‑ Just as a matter of punctuation, in the seventh line of page 48 of the same subdivision, after the word "more," there should be a semi‑colon. I would like to have unanimous consent for that to be changed.

MR. DAVIS (Etowah)‑The Committee feel that a semi‑colon should not be there. They have studied it over, and we feel this is divided into two sections. There are two kinds of voters. Down to line 5 is one class, and we have inserted a semi‑colon there, and then from the word "reside" on down to the word "more," in the second line, includes the second class of voters. We have looked that over, and do not feel that anything but a comma should be there.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will state that he is advised by the Secretary that there is a semi‑colon in the original copy where the gentleman from Calhoun indicates one should be.


4806                              

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

MR. WHITE‑I desire to offer a formal amendment that I submitted to the chairman of the Committee, and it is agreeable to him.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Page 54, line 24, amend after the word `any election,' at the end of line 24, the following, `and in criminal prosecutions for violations of election laws,' and by adding after the word "defendants." in line twenty-five the following: "In such criminal prosecution."

MR. WHITE‑I ask that it he adopted by unanimous consent.

A vote was taken and the amendment was adopted.

MR. WHITE‑ We have been a long time on this Article, and it seems to me we have had full discussion, and I move the previous question on the adoption of the Article.

MR. BURNS‑I want to ask the gentleman to suspend one moment.

MR. WHITE‑ We have been on it so long—

MR. BURNS‑ We have all next week to be on it.

MR. WHITE‑ The Committee insists on it.

MR. BURNS‑I would like for you to look at this. You are a lawyer, and I would like for all these solicitors here to look at it.

MR. WHITE‑ Anything I can do to accommodate you personally. (Reading paper handed to him.) We cannot agree to this.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is shall the main question be now put.

MR. BURNS‑I would like for him to answer my question.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman states he cannot consent.

MR. BURNS‑ He can answer my question, as big a man as he is and as small a man as I am. (Laughter.)

THE PRESIDENT‑‑ The gentleman from Dallas is not in order at this time, the previous question haring been ordered.

MR. BURNS–Any polly can holler "question." Will you answer my question?

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman from Dallas is not in order at this time.

MR. BURNS‑ He said he would answer it.


4807

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman will answer the question.

MR. WHITE‑I had not heard it. Didn't know the gentleman had propounded one.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑I rise to a point of order. Nothing is in order except putting the question.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The point of order is well taken.

MR. BURNS‑ You have the floor, will you answer the question?

MR. BURNS‑I challenge any solicitor on this floor to answer my question.

MR. PILLANS‑I rise to a point of order. We are anxious to get through with the business and the previous question is the only thing before, the House.

THE PRESIDENT ‑The Chair has so ruled. The question is shall the main question be now put.

The main question was ordered.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is now upon the adoption of the Article as amended. As many as favor the adoption will say aye.

Upon a vote being taken the Article was adopted.

MR. WHITE‑ I move now that the Article be referred at once under the rule to the Committee on Harmony as an amendment has been made.

THE PRESIDENT‑ It is moved that the Article be referred to the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony to be reported.

MR. BURNS‑I rise to a question of personal privilege.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman will state his question of personal privilege.

MR. BURNS‑I want to ask the privilege of the gentleman of this Convention to enter a protest and have my amendment framed in that protest and I want every solicitor in Alabama to read it and re‑read it.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑I object.

MR. BURNS‑ You would not answer my question.

THE PRESIDENT‑ Is there objection?

Objection was made.

MR. BURNS‑I rise to a question of personal privilege.


4808                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman from Dallas will state his question of personal privilege, and remember that the time of the Convention is valuable.

MR. BURNS‑ On page 48, Section 182, one line 20—

MR. SAMFORD‑I rise to a point of order, The gentleman is not stating a question of personal privilege.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The point of order is well taken.

MR. BURNS— I have not had a chance.

THE PRESIDENT— The Chair is compelled to rule that the gentleman is out of order.

MR. BURNS–I ask to state it—

THE PRESIDENT— It is not a question of personal privilege to state what amendment a delegate would have offered had he the opportunity. The question is on the next Article.

MR. OATES— There has been no roll call for the introduction of ordinances and resolutions, but I desire to introduce an ordinance.

THE PRESIDENT‑‑‑ The gentleman from Montgomery asks unanimous consent to introduce an ordinance.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair hears no objection.

The Secretary read the ordinance as follows

Ordinance No. 462, by Mr. Oates:

Whereas, a respectable number of the delegates to this Convention are opposed on principle, to subdivision 2 of Section 180 of Article VIII of this Constitution, which subdivision is known as the "grandfather" clause, therefore. be it resolved, by the people of Alabama in Convention assembled: That at the same time and places at which an election is held for the ratification or rejection of the Constitution framed by this Convention, a separate poll be taken of the qualified elector; voting at such election upon said “grandfather" clause as follows, to wit

On each ticket to be used in said election there shall be written or printed these words, to wit:

For Subdivision 2 of Section 180, Article VIII.

Against Subdivision 2 of Section 180 of Article VIII.

And in the margin, the voter shall make or cause to be opposite to those words an "X" as he may favor or oppose the ratification or rejection of the said subdivision and the election in all respect shall be conducted and returns made by the election offi‑


4809

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

cers, the same as the election for the ratification or rejection of the whole Constitution, and if a majority of those voting at said election vote for the ratification of the said Subdivision 2 of Section 180 of Article VIII, it shall be a part of the Constitution and so declared by the Governor in his proclamation declaring the result of said election, as provided in Section of the enabling act; but if a majority of those voting at said election, vote against the ratification of said subdivision 2 of Section 180 of Article VIII, then the said subdivision shall not be a part of said Constitution, and the same shall be so announced and declared by the Governor in his aforesaid proclamation.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The ordinance will be referred to the Committee on Suffrage and Elections.

MR. OATES‑ t pertains to that subject it is true‑ I do not care to what committee it be referred, provided it is reported.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair has some trouble in determining whether it be an ordinance or a resolution.

MR. OATES‑ It is a combination.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The Chair will refer it to the Committee on Suffrage and Elections, as it pertains to that subject.

MR. LOMAX‑I ask leave to introduce a resolution for reference to the Committee on Incidental Expenses.

Leave was granted.

MR. OATES‑ It might be more convenient to refer that ordinance to the Committee on Rules, I have no choice especially, it is a small matter.

THE PRESIDENT‑ If the gentleman prefers it will be referred to the Committee on Rules, and it is so referred.

The Secretary read the resolution introduced by Mr. Lomax as follows:

"Resolved, that the pages of the Convention be allowed and paid mileage at the rate as was paid members of the Convention, so as to reimburse them for their expenses in going to and returning from their homes during the recess of this Convention."

THE PRESIDENT‑ The resolution is referred to the Committee on Rules.

MR. LOMAX‑I would prefer that it be referred to the Committee on Incidental Expenses.

THE PRESIDENT‑ Our rules require that it be referred as the Chair has done, the Chair personally has no objection, and would suggest to the gentleman that he can move to suspend the


4810                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

rules, otherwise the resolution is referred to the Committee on Rules.

The Secretary read Article IX as follows:

ARTICLE IX.

Representation.

197. The whole number of Senators shall be not less than one-fourth, or more than one-third of the whole number of Representatives.

198. The House of Representatives shall consist of not more than one hundred and five members unless new counties shall be created, in which event each new county shall be entitled to one Representative. The members of the House of Representatives shall be apportioned by the Legislature among the several counties of the State, according to the number of inhabitants in there respectively, as ascertained by the decennial census of the United States, which apportionment when made shall not be subject to alteration, until the next session of the Legislature after the next decennial census of the United States shall have been taken.

199. It shall be the duty of the Legislature at its first session after the taking of the decennial census of the United States in the year nineteen hundred and ten, and after each subsequent decennial census, to fix by law the number of Representatives, and apportion them among the several counties of the State. according to the number of inhabitants in them respectively; provided, that each county shall be entitled to at least one representative.

200. It shall be the duty of the Legislature at its first session after the taking of the decennial census of the United States in the year nineteen hundred and ten, and after each subsequent decennial census, to fix by law the number of Senators and to divide the State into as many Senatorial districts as there are Senators, which districts shall be as nearly equal to each other in the number of inhabitants as may be, and each shall be entitled to one Senator, and  more; and such districts when formed shall not be changed until the next apportioning session of the Legislature, after the next decennial census of the United States shall have been taken; provided, that counties created after the next preceding apportioning session of the Legislature may be attached to Senatorial districts. No county shall be divided between two districts and no district shall be made up of two or more counties not contiguous to each other.

201. Should any decennial census of the United States not be taken, or if when taken, the same, as to this State, be not full and satisfactory, the Legislature shall have power at its first session after the time shall have elapsed for the taking of said census to provide for all enumeration of all the inhabitants of this State, upon which it shall be the duty of the Legislature to make the apportionment of Representatives and Senators as provided in this article.

202. Until the Legislature shall make an apportionment of Representatives among the several counties, as provided in the preceding section, the


4811

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

counties of Autauga, Baldwin, Bibb, Blount, Cherokee, Chilton, Choctaw, Clay, Cleburne, Coffee, Colbert, Conecuh, Coosa, Covington, Crenshaw, Cullman, Dale, DeKalb, Escambia, Fayette, Franklin, Geneva, Greene, Lamar, Lawrence, Limestone, Macon, Marion, Marshall, Monroe, Pickens, Randolph, St. Clair, Shelby, Washington and Winston shall each have one Representative; the counties of Barbour, Bullock, Butler, Calhoun, Chambers, Clarke, Elmore, Etowah, Hale, Henry, Jackson, Lauderdale, Lee, Lowndes, Madison, Marengo, Morgan, Perry, Pike, Russell, Sumter, Talladega, Tallapoosa, Tuscaloosa , Walker and Wilcox shall each have two Representatives; the counties of Dallas and Mobile shall each have three Representatives; the county of Montgomery shall have four Representatives; and the county of Jefferson shall have seven Representatives.

203. Until the Legislature shall divide the State into Senatorial districts, as herein provided, the Senatorial districts, shall be as follows: First District, Lauderdale and Limestone; Second District, Lawrence and Morgan; Third District, Blount, Cullman and Winston; Fourth District, Madison; Fifth District, Jackson and Marshall; Sixth District, Etowah and St. Clair; Seventh District, Calhoun; Eighth District, Talladega; Ninth District, Chambers and Randolph: Tenth District, Tallapoosa and Elmore; Eleventh District, Tuscaloosa: Twelfth District, Fayette, Lamar and Walker; Thirteenth District, Jefferson; Fourteenth District, Pickens and Sumter; Fifteenth District; Autauga, Chilton and Shelby; Sixteenth District, Lowndes : Seventeenth District, Butler, Conecuh and Covington; Eighteenth District. Bibb and Perry; Nineteenth District, Choctaw, Clarke and Washington; Twenieth District, Baldwin, Escambia and Monroe; Twenty-second district, Wilcox; twenty-third District, Dale and Geneva; twenty-fourth district, Barbour; twenty-fifth district, Coffee, Crenshaw and Pike; twenty-sixth district, Bullock and Macon; twenty-seventh district, Lee and Russell; twenty-eighth district, Montgomery; twenty-ninth district, Cherokee and DeKalb; thirtieth district; Dallas; thirty-first district, Colbert, Franklin and Marion: thirty-second district, Greene and Hale; thirty-third district, Mobile; thirty-fourth district, Cleburne, Clay and Coosa, thirty-fifth district, Henry.

Mr. Harrison took the Chair.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is on the adoption of Article IX.

MR. WILSON (Clarke)‑Section 202, page 58, line 12, the county of Clarke is spelled wrong, it should be spelled with an “e." I ask unanimous consent to make the correction.

Unanimous consent was accorded.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is upon the adoption of the Article.  Is the Convention ready for the question?

MR. BURNS‑I want to know— of course there is no rule to that effect— but I want to know if a member to this Convention has a right to enter his protest—


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MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑I rise to a point of order, that there is no rule of this Convention to permit a delegate to enter his protest. The previous question has been moved upon this Article.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM— On the point of order that the previous question has been ordered, the Chair will sustain the point of order. The question is shall the main question be now put?

Upon a vote being taken the main question was ordered.

The main question was ordered, and upon a further vote being taken the question was adopted.

MR. BURNS‑ There is no previous question, now. I rise to a point of information. As a member of this Convention, has a delegate a right to enter a protest?

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ In reply to the delegate the present Chairman will take the opportunity to examine the rules, which he will do while the next Article is being read, and the Chair would advise the gentleman from Dallas to do the same thing.

The Secretary read Article X. as follows:

ARTICLE X.

Exemptions.

204. The personal property of any resident of this State, to the value of $1,000, to be selected by such resident, shall be exempt from sale on execution, or other process of any court, issued for collection of any debt contracted since the 13th day of July, 1868, or after the ratification of this Constitution.

205. Every homestead not exceeding eighty acres, and the dwelling and appurtenances thereon, to be selected by the owner thereof, and not in any city, town or village; or in lieu thereof, at the option of the owner, any lot in a city, town or village, with, the dwelling and appurtenances thereon, owned and occupied by any resident of this State, and not exceeding the value of $2,000, shall be exempt from sale on execution, or any other process, from a court for any debt contracted since the 13th day of July, 1868, or after the ratification of this Constitution. Such exemption, however, shall not extend to any mortgage lawfully obtained, but such mortgage or other alienation of said homestead by the owner thereof, if a married man, shall not be valid without the voluntary signature and assent of the wife to the same.

206. The homestead of the family, after the death of the owner thereof, shall be exempt from the payment of any debts contracted since the 13th day of July, 1868, or after the ratification of this Constitution, in all cases during the minority of the children.

207. The provisions of Sections 204 and 205 of this Constitution shall not be so construed as to prevent a laborer's lien for work done and per‑


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formed for the person claiming such exemption, or a mechanic's lien for work done on the premises.

208. If the owner of a homestead die, leaving a widow, but no children, such homestead shall be exempt, and the rents and products thereof shall inure to her benefit.

209. The real and personal property of any female in this State, acquired before marriage, and all property, real and personal, to which she may afterwards be entitled by gift, grant, inheritance or devise, shall be and remain the separate estate and property of such female, and shall not be liable for any debts, obligations or engagements of her husband, and may be devised or bequeathed by her, the same as if she were a feme sole.

210. The right of exemption hereinbefore secured may be waived by an instrument in writing, and when such waiver relates to realty the instrument must be signed by both the husband and wife, and attested by one witness.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is on the adoption of the Article just read. Is the Convention ready for the question ?

A vote being taken the Article was adopted.

The Secretary read Article XI, as follows:

ARTICLE XI.

Taxation.

211. All taxes levied on property in this State shall be assessed in exact proportion to the value of such property, but no tax shall be assessed upon any debt for rent or hire of real or personal property while owned by the landlord or hirer during the current year of such rental or hire, if such real or personal property be assessed at its full value.

212. The power to levy taxes shall not be delegated to individuals, private corporations or associations.

213. After the ratification of this Constitution, no new debt shall be created against or incurred by this State, or its authority, except to repel invasion or suppress insurrection, and then only by a concurrence of two-thirds of the members of each house of the Legislature, and the vote shall be taken by yeas and nays, and entered on the journals; and any act creating or incurring any new debt against this State, except as herein provided for, shall be absolutely void; provided, the Governor may be authorized to negotiate temporary loans, never to exceed three hundred thousand dollars, to meet the deficiencies in the treasury, and until the same is paid, no new loan shall be negotiated; provided further, that this section shall not be so construed as to prevent the issuance of bonds for the purpose of refunding the existing bonded indebtedness of the State.


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214. The Legislature shall not have the power to levy, in any one year, a greater rate of taxation than sixty-five one-hundredths of one per centum on the value of taxable property within this State.

215. No county in this State shall be authorized to levy a greater rate of taxation, in any one year, on the value of the taxable property therein, than one-half of one per centum; provided, that to pay debts existing on the sixth day of December, 1875, an additional rate of one-fourth of one per centum may be levied and collected, which shall be appropriated exclusively to the payment of such debts and the interest thereon; provided further, that to pay any debt or liability now existing against any county, incurred for the erection, construction or maintenance of the necessary public buildings or bridges, or that may hereafter be created for the erection of necessary public buildings, bridges or roads, any county may levy and collect such special taxes, not to exceed one-fourth of one per centum, as may have been or may hereafter be authorized by law, which taxes so levied and collected, shall be applied exclusively to the purposes for which the same were so levied and collected.

216. No city, town, village, or other municipal corporation, other than as provided in this Article, shall levy or collect a higher rate of taxation in any one year on the property situated therein than one-half of one per centum of the value of such property as assessed for State taxation during the preceding year; provided, that for the purpose of paying debts existing on the sixth day of December, 1875, and the interest thereon, a tax of one percentum may be levied and collected, to be applied exclusively to the payment of such indebtedness: and provided further, that this section shall not apply to the city of Mobile, which city may from and after the ratification of this Constitution, levy a tax not to exceed the rate of three-fourths of one per centum to pay the expenses of the city government, and may also levy a tax not to exceed three-fourths of one per centum to pay the debt existing on the sixth day of December, 1875, with interest thereon, or any renewal of such debt; and provided further, that this section shall not apply to the cities of Birmingham and Huntsville and the town of Andalusia, which cities and town may levy and collect a tax not to exceed one-half of one per centum, in addition to the tax of one-half of one percentum as hereinbefore allowed to be levied and collected, such special tax to be applied exclusively to the payment of interest on bonds of said cities of Birmingham and Huntsville and town of Andalusia respectively, heretofore issued in pursuance of law, or now authorized by law to he issued, and for a sinking fund to pay off said bonds at the maturity thereof; and provided further, that this section shall not apply to the city of Montgomery, which city shall have the right to levy and collect a tax of not exceeding one-half of one per centum per annum upon the value of the taxable property therein as fixed for State taxation, for general purposes, and an additional tax of not exceeding three-fourths of one per centum per annum upon the value of property therein, as fixed for State taxation, to be devoted exclusively to the payment of its public debt, interest thereon, and renewals thereof, and to the maintenance of its public schools and public conveniences, and provided further, that this section shall not apply to Troy, Attalla, Gadsden, Bessemer, Woodlawn, Brewton, Pratt City,


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Ensley, Wylam and Avondale, which cities and towns may from and after the ratification of this Constitution, levy and collect an, additional tax of not exceeding one-half of one per‑centum; and, provided further, that this section shall not apply to the cities of Decatur, New Decatur and Cullman, which cities may from and after the ratification of this Constitution levy and collect an additional tax of not exceeding three-tenths of one percentum per annum, such special tax of said city of Decatur. to be applied exclusively for the public schools, public school buildings, and such special tax of said cities of New Decatur and Cullman to be applied exclusively to educational purposes and to be expended under this respective boards of public school trustees; and public improvements; but this additional tax shall not be levied by Troy, Attalla, Gadsden, Bessemer, Woodlawn, Brewton, Pratt City, Ensley, Wylam, Avondale, Decatur, New Decatur or Cullman, unless authorized by a majority vote of the qualified electors voting at a special election held for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not said tax shall be levied; and provided further, that the purposes for which such special tax is sought to be levied shall be stated in such election call, and, if authorized, the revenue derived from such special tax shall be used for no other purpose than that stated; and provided further, that the additional tax authorized to be levied by the city of Troy, when so levied and collected, shall be used exclusively in the payment of the bonds and interest coupons thereon, hereafter issued in the justment of the present bonded indebtedness of said city; and provided further, that the additional tax authorized to be levied and collected by the city of Attalla shall, when so levied and collected, be used exclusively in the payment of bonds to the amount of not exceeding twenty-five thousand dollars and the interest coupons thereon, hereafter to be issued in  the adjustment of the present indebtedness of said city; provided further, that the governing boards of the said cities, which are authorized to levy an additional tax, after the holding of an election as aforesaid, are hereby authorized to provide by ordinance the necessary machinery for the holding of said election and declaring the results thereof.

217. The property of private corporations, associations and individuals of this State shall forever be  taxed at the same rate; provided, this section shall not apply to institutions devoted exclusively to religious, educational or charitable purposes.

218. The Legislature shall not have the power to require counties or other municipal corporations to pay any charges which are now payable out of the State Treasury.

219. The legislature may levy a tax of not more than two and one-half per centum of the value of all estate, real and personal, money, public and private securities of every kind in this State, passing from any person who may die seized and possessed thereof, or of any part of such estate, money or securities or interest therein transferred by the intestate laws of this State or by will, deed, grant, bargain, sale or gift, made or intended to take effect in possession after death of the grantor, devisor or donor, to any person or persons, bodies politics or corporate, in trust or otherwise, other than to or for the use of the father, mother, husband, wife, brothers, sisters, children or lineal descendants of the grantor, devisor, donor or intestate.


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THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The question is upon the adoption of the Article just read.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑I have an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend Section 216 of the proposed Constitution by striking cut the following words, beginning on the 21st line of page 63 of said Section "anal provided further, that this Section shall not apply to the city of Montgomery, which city shall have the right to levy and collect a tax of not exceeding one-half of 1 per centum per annum upon the value of the taxable property therein, as fixed for State taxation for general purposes, and an additional tax of not exceeding three-fourths of 1 per centum per annum upon the value of the property therein, as fixed for State taxation, to be devoted exclusively to the payment of its public debt, interest thereon, and renewals thereof, and for the maintenance of its public schools and public conveniences.' on page 64, and insert in lieu thereof the following:

" `The city of Montgomery shall not levy or collect a larger rate of taxation in any one year on the property thereof than one-half of 1 per centum of the value of such property as assessed for State taxation during the preceding year; provided, that for the payment of debts existing at the tune of the ratification of the Constitution of 1875, and the interest thereon, an additional rate of 1 per centum may be collected, to be applied exclusively to any such indebtedness.' "

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑Mr. President and fellow delegate. I ask your forbearance for a little while; I ask your patience, that you may be able to do justice. It is a matter which concerns not only Montgomery, but each one of you. The act of November 10, 1900, calling this Convention, contained various provisions, one of which I will read to you. It said "That if such Convention be called, it shall incorporate and adopt the following as a part or Section of any Constitution it may frame and adopt, to wit : `No city, town or other municipal corporation, other than provided for in this Article, shall levy or collect a larger rate of taxation in any one year on the property thereof, than one-half of 1 per centum of the value of such property, as assessed for the State taxation during the preceding year; provided, that for the payment of debt, existing on the 6th day of December, 1875, and the interest thereon, an additional rate of 1 per centum may be collected to be applied exclusively to such indebtedness.'"

That act was approved by the Democratic Convention of March 19, 1900. That Convention went forward and adopted a platform. Many of its provisions had been adhered to most religiously by this Convention. It promised to submit the Constitution to the people for ratification. That you have done. You


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promised not to change the exemption laws. That you have also observed. You promised to keep Montgomery as the Capitol of the State of Alabama. That you have done. You said you would not disfranchise any white man. You have also observed with great fidelity that provision. The only provision which has been changed so far as I am able to understand is that which applies to Montgomery.  Now , I ask each delegate to this Convention, if this additional tax which is put upon Montgomery were put upon the State at large, would you adopt it? Would you not violate the pledge you made, if you did so? Then if it would be a violation of your pledge to the people, if it applied to the whole State, is it less a violation of your promise when applied to the city of Montgomery? Montgomery is a part of Alabama. Her 13,000 white people are a part of your constituents, and why should you make an exception of Montgomery when you have observed your pledge with regard to every other portion of the State? What sin has Montgomery committed that she should be so punished?  What crime, that you must burden her still more with indebtedness? They tell me, and they say to you, that this is not a matter of legislative courtesy. It is a matter of honor to every man who accepted a nomination under the Democratic platform of March 19, 1900, whether he was nominated for the Convention from the State at large, or for the district or for the Senatorial District, or even the counties. he adopted it, and have acted in that faith. Why should you make this change? They tell me that unless you increase the taxes upon Montgomery that she would become insolvent and repudiate. What do the private fortunes of Montgomery have to do with your honor and your pledges? What have you, each one of you, to do with the insolvency and bankruptcy or repudiation of your Capital City.  I know you have a pride in her because it is an historic city, second only to Washington in the United States now. I know you have a pride in that, but does that relieve you from the pledge you made to the people of Alabama? The people of Alabama sympathized with you in honoring Montgomery, but not in the violation of your promise made to her. When this platform was put forward, it influenced men to vote for you, you were elected on it.  I voted for it because when I had been once opposed to the Convention, I said to my friends: "This is a pledge of this people. They are honorable patriotic men; they are men of prominence, and they do not dare to falsify what they have said to you, and expect future honors in the State of Alabama." Montgomery County itself was not enthusiastic for it. The city voted for it, and the city is reaping the benefit under this provision, and the trust which is reposed in your honor, in your fidelity to principle and to genuine Democracy. But it is said that it is a decrease. Under this law, you can already levy a tax of $1.50, and they propose to reduce it to $1.25.  This is an error, for it would be a singular proposition that, to


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relieve a city from insolvency, you would reduce the taxes from $1.50 to $1.25 in order to raise more money; to pay to its debts and carry oil its improvements and its conveniences. I appeal to you to adopt this amendment.

What is more, the section in the Committee's report does what?  The Constitution of 1875, which I have transcribed in the amendment, limits the taxation to one hundred cents on the hundred dollars for debts prior to the ratification of the Constitution of 1875. This section does not limit it at all. When that was done in 1875, Montgomery owed a bonded debt of $547,600, for which provision was made to pay the principal and the interest. It owes today about $1,991.020— nearly three times as much. The old law said that when you assessed the property of these people it should be according to the rate of taxation assessed by the State the preceding year. This does not say "preceding year," but it means the current year, and we know that the assessments vary from year to year, according to whether property becomes more valuable or depreciates in value. Why should you, in the very provision which refers to debts prior to 1875, make all the indebtedness of Montgomery due from the inception of the city until today that have not been paid? Why do you make that discrimination in regard to Montgomery? Why do you say the rate of taxation should be that which was assessed for the State, and everywhere else you say "for the preceding year:" Why do you make that distinction against Montgomery?

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.–The time of the gentleman from Montgomery has expired.

MR. SANFORD–I ask, and I intended to have done so as the commencement of my speech, that my time be extended.

MR. OATES–I ask that my colleague’s time be extended.

Upon a vote being taken, the motion to extend the time of the gentleman was carried.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)–Why do you make that distinction? I represent the people of Montgomery, as also do my colleagues. I talk with the people on the streets. My friends see the Mayor and Aldermen and municipal officials, and they talk about insolvency. The people do not say anything about insolvency. They say, "Colonel, for God's sake don't let them put that additional burden upon us." These ordinances taxing abutting property for alleged improvements still burden heavy this people.  Montgomery today is prospering even under the illegal tax of $1.12 1‑2. which is unjustly levied. You put an additional tax on her, and building ceases, rents go up, to meet the additional tax; necessary articles rise in price, for the purpose of paying rent, and the young men and the young women receive less wages, in order


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that the merchants may make profits; laborers cease to be employed because nobody can continue to build houses and make improvements with the additional burden upon then. I ask you, my countrymen, why do you do this? It is to your honor I appeal.  I dislike to disagree with my colleagues, all of whom are honorable men. I have no doubt of their patriotism, but they are acting under a mistaken idea. If Montgomery owes more than $700,000 above her assets and cannot sell her bonds, how will putting more burdens upon her save her from repudiation and insolvency? Every tax you put upon her takes away her ability to pay what she already owes, so I beg of you not to make this distinction against Montgomery. Let me say to you that you are honorable men; that you are pledged, as I am pledged, that I stand by my promises, and I expect you to stand by your promise, and although Montgomery is but a part, that you will mete to her the same justice that you do to the broad State of Alabama, and to all of its people. Do not increase this tax upon her when you do not increase it upon others. When you say there are other towns to be taxed, they have the privilege of saying whether or, not they will be so burdened by a popular vote at an election held for that purpose. There are gentlemen who, days ago, may have voted for this, and then fold me afterwards they would not have voted the tax on their own place. had it not been referred back to their people to say whether they would accept the burden or not. Montgomery has not that privilege. Troy has the privilege of voting for it, and Attalla has that privilege, but Montgomery has not. All of the towns you have added an additional tax upon have the privilege, but Montgomery has no such right. Why, my countrymen, you do not want to be placed in the category of some religious hypocrites, who pray to the Lord, and wear out the knees of their breeches, asking Him to show them the right way, and then wear out the seat of their pantaloons sliding away from it. I hope that such will not be the course of the Democrats of Alabama or the delegates to this Convention, and yet that is what you are asked to do, to get this commission from the people and then betray it by voting a higher tax upon the people of Montgomery.  Tell me why you should do it? Why should Montgomery bear 'a burden that no other town bears, without the privilege of determining it by their own votes I ask you, gentlemen, to amend this by putting Montgomery precisely where she stood when this Convention assembled. There is no harm in that, and you will make friend of a great community. Montgomery County, with its fourteen thousand votes, might approve your Constitution as it stands, and Montgomery being in that position, but without it (I do not make any threats), I doubt if Montgomery County would vote for your Constitution, if the Constitution should burden her people and rob them of their property, and you violate by your action the pledge given to them, and upon which they voted for


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this Convention. What reason can be given for it? It does not relieve the city from insolvency. It is an additional burden, and although one gentleman appealed to you several days ago to vote for it, and save the great Capital City of Montgomery from the shame of repudiation and bankruptcy, and another gentleman has said that it is a decrease of taxes from $1.50 to $1.25. Is it not a strange idea that one says it is necessary, to avoid insolvency, to be taxed $1.25 per centum, and another says it is a decrease to $1.25? Look at the absurdity of the proposition.

That is the position these gentlemen occupy.

They will say it is but little. The property tax of Montgomery today for the city is 50 cents for current expenses. It pays 20 cents properly to pay the interest upon $547,000, which was the bonded debt prior to the 6th of December, 1875. It makes in all about $27,300 to pay that. It is true they have been collecting several thousand dollars more for that purpose, and applying it improperly. Now they say this is but twelve and a half cents more. It is from seventy cents to one dollar and twenty-five cents— an increase of fifty-five cents more. Why? Because of the one dollar twelve and a half cents per centum which they have collected, forty-two and a half cents is illegal and will not bear the test of the courts, car of any controversy upon it, therefore it is a tax of fifty-five cents that you have raised upon Montgomery more than upon any other city. For these reasons, I ask you, my countrymen, to adopt the amendment which I have offered. It places you precisely in the position that you held when you assembled here, and that Montgomery stood in when this Convention was called.

MR. WATTS‑I am very fond of my friend, the senior delegate from Montgomery. He is a man of considerable culture and education, and a very interesting man to talk to, except on the one subject of taxation. He never is in favor of the citizen bearing the proper burden. Now, he speaks about the fact that he wants to keep his pledge. There is not a member of the Montgomery delegation who is not as anxious to keep his pledge as my learned colleague. As far as am concerned, individually, I never made any pledge, but had I made any pledge such as he says he made, and found afterwards that it was to the ruin and bankruptcy to the city to keep that pledge, I would unhesitatingly vote against it.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑I would not dishonor myself for the State of Alabama.

MR. WATTS‑ That is all right. I would not dishonor myself, either.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑I would just like to ask the gentleman from Montgomery if the Democratic party in Convention


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assembled did not pledge the people of Alabama, together with the people of Montgomery, that the tax rate would not be raised?

MR. WATTS‑ Yes, sir, in the State.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑Did not the Democratic Convention adopt the enabling act as passed by the Legislature and didn't—

MR. WATTS‑ Hold on, I am not going to yield to you to take up the time of my speech. I can speak to one Sanford at a time. I just want to say to this Convention that there are seven representatives on the floor of this Convention from the city of Montgomery. Of those seven one alone, the gentleman who has just addressed you, is in favor of that amendment. If we were to adopt his amendment it would result in Montgomery defaulting in her interest every year. Why, the rate which he proposes there, which amounts to seventy-five cents on the hundred dollars, for every purpose, would raise in the city of Montgomery about ninety thousand dollars and the interest on her public debt is ninety-four thousand dollars, not counting the expenses of her schools, or of her Police Department, or of her Fire Department, or of her streets or anything else, and yet he would propose for this Convention to put upon her a rate which would put us in that condition, and in view of the fact that Mobile, that Birmingham, that Huntsville, that Attalla and a dozen other places have, by this Convention, been placed in a better position. If, gentlemen, you want to see your Capital City go down in devastation and ruin, if you want to see it go into bankruptcy, then adopt this amendment. But if you want to see her go forward, as she has been going, improving each day, growing more beautiful as she advances, vote with me to lay this amendment on the table as I now move to do.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery) ‑ My friends, if you table that amendment, Montgomery will floor your Constitution.

MR. WATTS‑I tell you Montgomery will go overwhelmingly for this Constitution. (Applause.)

MR. JONES (Montgomery) ‑ I hope the gentleman will withdraw that motion.

MR. WATTS‑I will withdraw it.

MR. JONES‑ We all have an affection for the senior delegate from Montgomery. He has put himself upon record, and we endeavored in every way possible to avoid this debate, and to come to some agreement with him, but he said he had trade a pledge, and that he intended, if he could get it, to have the old Constitution or nothing on that subject.


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Now I will briefly explain to the members of the Convention the situation which confronts Montgomery.

When the Constitution of 1875 was adopted, the framers of it wisely, as they thought, unwisely as experience proved, fixed the rate of current expenditures for cities at fifty cents on the hundred dollars, Montgomery then had a debt of nearly six hundred and twenty thousand dollars. The Constitution of 1875 made an exception for her benefit, and said that she could levy in addition, one per cent. more for the payment of the debts, existing at the time of the ratification of that Constitution. In time, Montgomery grew. Her debt was funded. It originally bore eight percent. It was cut down, I believe, to six per cent.

MR. SAN FORD (Montgomery)‑Five per cent., most of it.

MR. JONES‑ And finally to five per cent. The city grew. Its expenses grew, and from 1875 down to this good hour, with the approbation of ninety-five per cent. of the tax payers, every Council that she ever had levied more than the rate it was allowed to pay on the existing indebtedness, in order to eke out its current expense fund. I had the honor in 1876 to be in the Council in which George W. Stone was an honored member, a very conscientious and honorable man, and Mr. Derr and Mr. M. B. Brown and others distinguished for their fidelity to this people, and they deliberately levied, year by year, under the guise of interest, something to eke out the small current expense fund, and that has gone on from that day try this. Now the city has grown. We owe debts, and I beg my friends pardon, but he is under one misapprehension.  This rate of taxation has nothing on God's earth to do with paving. This tax upon property is not to any more paving. We have built school houses, and we have made sanitary improvement, to save our city from future visits of pestilence and fever, and we have been levying this rate of one dollar and twelve and a half cents. Our people take some pride in their schools. They may want to levy a little more. Our police department is increasing its expenses. There are a thousand things, and when we came to legislate for the welfare of Montgomery, after conference with those who knew most about its affairs, we agreed that it would be a wise and proper thing to allow the city, not to compel it, to go as far as a dollar and twenty-five cents, in order to put at rest the question of her solvency, and not have these bonds that have been issued by authority of the legislature, and in accordance with the wishes of the people and which are represented in the magnificent school houses around this city repudiated and dishonored.

MR. COLEMAN (Greene)‑I am quite sure the Convention will give you all the time you want, and I want to satisfy my own conscience about this thing. I see that when this act was adopted, the representatives from Mobile and Birmingham had those cities excepted.


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MR. JONES‑ Which act?

MR. COLEMAN‑ The act calling this Convention together.  Why was it your representatives did not have Montgomery excepted?

MR. JONES‑I do not know. I was not in the Legislature.

MR. COLEMAN‑ And why was it that the Democratic Convention, when this platform was adopted, which pledged us and pledged that whole Convention to abide by this act and not exceed that, why wasn't something said at that time? Do you know?

MR. JONES‑I wasn't present, and do not know.

MR. COLEMAN— Then I would—

MR. JONES— One moment. The same inquiry would occur  to these other cities which have been excepted.

MR. COLEMAN‑‑ They are excepted here and the other cities all have permission to vote upon this question, but your city has none.

MR. JONES‑ That is a new question, my friend has raised this evening. I want to say further, that while I have the greatest respect for my colleague from Montgomery, he is not and cannot be the keeper of our honor. He can be the judge of what he has pledged himself to do, and he can be the judge of what the pledges he has taken require him to do, but, as we look at it, we keep the substance of our pledge. We have not, when you come to the letter of it, raised the rate of taxation at all. Today they have got the power to levy a tax of a dollar and a half, if you stick to the letter of the law under which the taxation is raised. 

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)–I deny that they can do it,  because the debt is not due.

MR. JONES‑I said under the law as laid down in the Constitution, we have a rate of a dollar and a half, but we had debts existing at the time of the ratification of that Constitution, the interest on which would require that stun to be raised. That is the difference. Now, if the Constitution of 1875 allowed the city of Montgomery to levy one per cent for the payment of debts existing at the time of the ratification of that Constitution, what is the objection to embodying a similar principle in the present Constitution, and allow us for all purposes, current expenses, debts, public utilities, and schools, to levy one and a quarter? Now, what were the representatives from Montgomery to do? Here is this condition of affairs. For twenty-five years, by sufferance, it has existed, but the moment any tax‑payer goes into the Chancery Court, and says that we are levying too much money under the guise of interest, they will cut down the revenue so that the city


4824                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

cannot pay the interest on the other outstanding bonds. Now what would happen?  What happens to any city when it repudiates? What is the harm to individuals?  What is the harm to the public?  Why they will bring greater calamities on the people than would accrue from a little extra taxation.

Some of us, I expect, have served this people as faithfully as my distinguished friend.   We have been here, with them in war, in peace and in pestilence.  We love our homes, and we are willing to take the responsibility, and let it go out among the people, where it belongs, instead of prolonging this discussion, which was needless to put my friend on record, because he was already on record.

MR. WATTS‑I move to lay the amendment on the table.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑I hope my friend will not do that. I call for the ayes and noes.

The call was not sustained.

Upon a vote being taken the motion to lay the amendment on the table prevailed.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑I have another amendment which I desire to offer.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM‑ The Chair at present recognizes the delegate from Macon.

MR. COBB‑I have an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows:

"Amend Section 211, page 62, by striking all after the word

'hire' on the third line.

MR. COBB–The section which this amendment is offered reads as follows:

"All taxes levied on the property in this State shall be assessed in exact proportion to the value of such property, but no tax shall be assessed upon any debt for rent or hire of real or personal property while owned by the landlord or hirer during the current year of such rental or hire, if such real or personal property he assessed at its full value.'

MR. COBB— Now, the words I propose to strike out are, "If such real or personal property be assessed at its full value.”  The reasons why I offer this amendment are these: In the first place it is a repetition. 'The words that I propose to strike out constitute a repetition merely of what has gone before in the first and second lines, to wit, that all property shall be assessed at its real value.  If that was all, however, I would not offer the amendment. But


4825

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

the trouble that is likely to occur from the section as it is in the Constitution now, is that it gives ground for the contention that a higher particularity is required in ascertaining the value of personal property or real estate owned by a landlord or hirer during the current year that applies to other property, and inasmuch as it leads to that contention, it might lead to difficulty between the taxpayer and the tax assessor or the tax commissioner. It does no good, and may be productive of contention and harm, and, therefore, I offer the amendment.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑ The question is on the adoption of the amendment proposed by the delegate from Macon.

MR. WHITE‑I move to lay the amendment on the table.

Upon a vote being taken, the amendment was tabled.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑I have an amendment.

"Amend Section 216, Article XI, page 65, by adding at the end thereof, `and provided further that this section shall not apply to the city of Selma, which city may levy and collect a tax of not exceeding one and fifteen one-hundredths of one per centum upon the value of the taxable property therein as fixed for State taxation for general purposes, payment of debts and aid to the public schools.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑That amendment is introduced by me at the request of the gentleman from Dallas, Mr. Reese. It is a matter in which I have no interest, and I yield my time to him.

MR. REESE‑ On the 19th and 20th of August, the Mayor and City Council of Selma petitioned the members of this Convention representing Dallas County to have this amendment introduced— rather, an amendment giving them 1 and 20 instead of 1 and 15, the amount specified there. Under the Constitution, as provided now, the law permits a tax for these purposes of 1 and 50. This is practically a reduction of 35 cents. This petition was received from the Mayor and Council of Selma on the day that this Convention adjourned. Upon the adjournment of this Convention, I and my colleagues returned to Selma, and I was on the streets of that city almost every day during the recess of this Convention, as was the case with my colleagues. I have talked with a number of the citizens of Selma, and there has not been a citizen in Selma, notwithstanding the publicity of this matter, which was made in the newspapers in Selma, there has not been a single objection urged with me by letter or otherwise. A peculiar condition of thins has existed in our city, and it has been rare in the past that the Mayor and Council have agreed upon any one proposition that I recollect, for many years, and this is the only proposition for many years that has had the co‑operation of both the Mayor and the Council, and I am satisfied that it is the desire of


4826                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

the 15,000 inhabitants of Selma, and I hope this Convention will pass it.

MR. CRAIG— It will be observed by this circular that comes to this Convention that the Council of Selma, on the 29th day of this month, after this Article in this Constitution had been adopted by the Convention, held a meeting and they resolved "it is the sense of this Council that a constitutional provision of this kind would be very injurious to our, people.

MR. REESE— Will the gentleman permit a question?

MR. CRAIG— Yes, sir.

MR. REESE‑ Did he say the 29th day of this month ?                          

MR. CRAIG‑ That is the date here?

MR. REESE‑ The one I have is dated the 27th. I desire to ask one other question. Was not the gentleman shown a telegram from the Mayor and Council of Selma on the 19th or 20th of this month, and if it was not received in this hall on that date?

MR. CRAIG–I have no recollection, but even if I did, it makes no difference. We were elected here by the people of Selma as well as the county of Dallas, with the express understanding that we were not to oppress them with any other taxation except that in the Constitution of the State of Alabama. Now, these things haves come to pass. These debts on the people of Selma were put upon their town before the gentleman was born. I have lived there for a long time, and have had a great deal of experience in that town in matters of property. I desire now to say that the only intimation we have had of this thing comes up here on the 29th day of this month to fix upon us a tax of $1.15 on every $100, for what? A part of this we pay now, $1.10, that is what is paid. Sixty cents of that is put on there to pay a debt that was Created in 1858 and 1859, and it was created in this way: The Council now, just like this Council, they were of the opinion—and it waft the sense of that Council that the city of Selma should subscribe $300,000 to a railroad, and they came up here to the Legislature of Alabama, and they got an act passed through the Legislature to authorize them to subscribe $300,000 and issue bonds on it and pay 8 per cent interest on it. Now, gentlemen, that thing went on, and at the end of the war the debt amounted to something in the neighborhood of $600,000, and there we were in that fix. They then funded that debt at the rate of 6 per cent per annum, and we defaulted in the payment of the interest. They then went into the court; and sued us, and got judgments against us, and it was compromised by putting it in the hands of the court so that the court could levy a tax and collect. It went on and on and no debt was paid. After a while the debt accumulated so, they wanted to fund it again. They failed to pay the interest


4827

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

and I think that great lawyer, Judge Brooks, came up here and passed an act that placed Selma in such a fix that no city in the world occupies today. She is burdened with a tax, and we have a provision in the acts of the Legislature passed somewhere in 1883, by which our old city can be taken out of the hands of the people and put in the hands of a receiver, and a tax levied and our property confiscated, and taken from us to pay this bonded debt. 'They had an agreement, and you will find it in the acts of the Legislature of that date where they can levy as much as 1 per cent.  To pay the interest on this bonded debt and to provide a sinking fund of $15,000 a year in order to pay off this debt. Now, they have gone on and had what you call a sinking fund commission, and they were to get this money. It was to be put in the bank to the credit of these commissioners, and the people were not to handle it at all, and it was to be paid out on these bonds. They have gone on and paid out some of it, but under that act of the Legislature which took all the property of the people of the city and turned it over to these bondholders, the bank there, and the stockholders got all those bonds at about 40 cents on the dollar and they hold them today and it is the best security in the United States today, because $5,000.000 or $6,000,000 of property is there to pay that debt of $350,000, I think it is now, and they do not want to collect the interest, and as I understand it, and have been informed, they have not been paying much in the sinking fund since. They do not want it. There is something better than that. The city can be put in the hands of a receiver and the property taken away from every man in the city and paid on this debt. There is another thing about this, there is a provision in this very act that it shall take ten councilmen to pass any act levying a tax on the people of that city. Do you see anything about ten Councilmen voting on this subject ? There is not a single scratch of the pen here that anybody voted for it. It says the sense of the Council.

MR. REESE‑ Does the gentleman clot recollect seeing this telegram signed by the Mayor and ten Councilmen of Selma?

MR. CRAIG‑I do not. I may have seen it. I do not say I did not. I may have seen it, but have no recollection of it, but that makes no difference. The people of Selma have had no voice in the matter. They have had no chance to vote on it. They sent us here not to put any more taxes on them, but to keep them off and let then stand where they were when we came here. I said it required ten Councilmen to pass any act to increase this tax.  Now, sir, the tax is $1.10 now, and they want to put this $1.10 on us permanently. That is what they want, but since this Convention passed this ordinance putting 5 per cent. on it that Council met and agreed to--the first thing they did, two or three years ago, was to divide the offices and make two where they had one.  The next thing they did was to come here and increase the sal‑


4828                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

aries of those officers and now they say give us money to pay these increases. The Mayor vetoed it, and they passed it over his veto to increase the salaries. Now, is this Convention going to put it upon the people of Selma, this tax of one ten for all time to come in order that they may make more offices and raise the salaries?  It will do very well for men who do not pay taxes, but there are some of us who pay taxes. I move to table the amendment.

MR. REESE‑I hope the gentleman will withdraw.

MR. CRAIG‑ No, sir, I will not withdraw.

MR. REESE–The delegates from Dallas are entitled to a hearing. I hope the Convention will vote down the gag law.

Upon a vote being taken, a division was called for and by a further vote of 52 ayes and 35 noes, the motion to table prevailed.

MR. SANFORD (Montgomery)‑I have an amendment.

"Amend Section 216, page 68, line 24. by inserting in said line after the words State taxation, the words `in the preceding year' and insert the words `for the preceding year' after the word taxation in the first line on page 64 of said report. After the words public conveniences in the second line of said page, of said section add the following words : `but this additional tax shall not be levied and collected by the city of Montgomery unless it shall be authorized by a majority of the votes of the qualified electors, voting at a special election held for the purpose of ascertaining whether or not said tax shall be levied, provided that the purpose for which said tax is sought to be levied, shall be stated in the notice for such election, which shall be held under the direction of the Judge of Probate, the Sheriff and the Clerk of the Circuit Court of Montgomery county, under the laws regulating, general elections. If such tax be authorized by the voters, the revenue derived from such special tax shall be used for no other purpose than that stated.

MR. SANFORD–I offer that amendment for the purpose of putting Montgomery upon a parity with the other towns whose taxes have been raised.  I notice in Article 216, that Troy, Attalla, Gadsden, Bessemer, Woodlawn, Brewton, Pratt City, Ensley Avondale, Decatur, New Decatur and Cullman, unless authorized by a majority vote of the qualified electors voting at a special election held for this purpose to ascertain whether or not said tax shall be levied, it shall not be collected.  I place Montgomery precisely in the same position.  I think it is an evidence of my devotion to them.  My friend stated just now that others have served the country.  I am glad to know it.  I have been a citizen before some of these gentlemen were born.  I served my country when some of them were wearing bibs and were mulling and pulling in their nurse’s arms.  I have always loved Montgomery, and its


4829

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

people, and as my colleagues know they have been very partial to file. They have never failed to honor me with any position which they thought I desired. I love them very much. One of my colleagues said I did not like the municipality. He meant by that the government, and I said because it was oppressive. I love the people but have not always been fond of the administrators of its authority. It is like a young man who loves a girl, but condemns the protector. I love the ward, but sometimes damn the guardian. So it is with regard to these people. I am fond of these people, and am doing everything I can to protect them from what I think is a useless burden, for it is a singular kind of logic that tells me when a city is insolvent that you can save it by making the inhabitants bankrupt also. That is the logic of this increased tax. Putting on more taxes to save a bankrupt city which is seven hundred thousand dollars more in debt than it has assets, including its Fire Department and its cemetery, to answer its liabilities. That is the condition. Now, I hope my friends will vote for this so that if Montgomery wants this additional burden it can saddle itself with the load, but do not say that Troy, Attalla, Avondale, Wylam and many little anonymous places I never heard of until I saw this they were dragged in for taxation, shall I have this right and yet Montgomery shall be denied it. Why should you do it? What have I done that I have not the same right as my friend Samford from Troy or Davis from Gadsden or a citizen from any other place to vote for or against this proposition. I ask you therefore my friends, to sustain at least this amendment. It you insist on taxing, let it be left to the people to say whether they are willing to bear the burdens or not.  I notice that some of these cities have been taken from it. Florence was stricken out. I am not certain, but Greensboro had all idea of going in a little, and got out. Anniston was threatened with the same calamity, but escaped the affliction. So on with others. Let Montgomery have the same privilege to say we will vote it, then I have not a word to say. I bow in submission to the will of my countrymen, as I have always done, and I hope this Convention will give the people the privilege of saving whether or not they will take upon themselves this additional burden. I can see no reason why it should be granted to some cities and towns and denied to Montgomery. Let me say to you that I wish this word "preceding" inserted also in the amendment so that they shall be taxed like other cities. I regret that my time is out.

MR. GRAHAM‑ (Montgomery) ‑ I hardly think it necessary, Mr. President, that I should enter into an elaborate discussion of the question involved in the amendment presented by my colleague. It is with sincere regret that I can not agree with him on the propositions. I have as much respect and love and consideration for the people of Montgomery county as the distin‑


4830                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

guished gentleman who has served them so well upon all occasions. 'This is the same fight, this is the same trouble, and this is the same matter which has been settled by this Convention heretofore. As it is embraced in this report of the committee in the proposed Constitution, without taking further time of the Convention to discuss the merits, I move to lay the amendment on the table.

MR. LOMAX‑ Mr. President, I second the motion to lay on the table.

MR. SANFORD‑ To deny the people the right to vote upon the question of taxation?

'Upon a vote being taken a division was called for and by a further vote of forty-six ayes and thirty-two noes, the amendment was tabled.

MR. BEDDOW‑I have an amendment.

"Strike out `and' in Section 216, line fifteen and nineteen, page sixty-three, where it occurs between Birmingham and Huntsville and insert after Huntsville the word `and Bessemer.' Strike out the \word `Bessemer' in the line three and eleven, page 64."

MR. BEDDOW‑ The effect of that amendment is to change the classification of Bessemer and put it in the classification of Birmingham and Huntsville. That amendment was offered by me at the request of Mr. Cornwell who lives in Bessemer and who was called home on account of the sickness of his wife. I inquired of him before he left whether or not his people wanted that change made, and he replied that they did and the City Council and Mayor also wanted it. and at his request I offer it.

MR. CUNNINGHAM‑I desire to add my testimony to that offered by my colleague that this is the request of Mr. Cornwell, the delegate from Bessemer. and I hope the amendment will be adopted.

Upon a vote being taken the amendment was adopted.

MR. WHITE‑I move the adoption of the Article.

Upon a vote being taken the Article was adopted.

MR. PETTUS‑I ask leave to introduce a short resolution.

The resolution was read as follows:

"Be it resolved. that this Convention stand adjourned sine die at 12 o'clock meridian, Tuesday, September 3rd, 1901, A. D."

Referred to the Committee on Rules.

MR. WHITE–I ask unanimous consent to make a report.

The report was read as follows:


4831

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

"Report from the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony.

"Mr. President, the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony of the Constitution, to which was referred resolution No. 459 by Mr. Sanders of Limestone, respectfully report the said resolution back with the recommendation that it do not pass.

(Signed.)         Frank S. White,

Chairman

MR. REESE‑I desire to offer a very short resolution.

MR. PETTUS‑I rise to a question of inquiry.

MR. WHITE— I move that the report of the Committee lie upon the table.

MR. SANDERS‑I move the adoption of the resolution which the Committee on Harmony have adversely reported.

MR. WHITE‑I have no objection. It was out of deference to the gentleman that I asked that it lie on the table.

MR. OATES‑I rise to a point of order. The Committee having reported adversely, without a recommendation that it lie on the table, it is not in order to move to lay on the table. They have simply adversely reported it and the delegate from Limestone certainly has a right to fight that report and try to have his resolution passed, but to add a motion to lay on the table, when adversely reported, is not in order.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The Chair did not understand that the motion was to table, but the Chairman of the Committee, as the Chair understood, simply reported it adversely and move that it lie on the table.

MR. BAREFIELD‑I move that the consideration of the report come up tomorrow ; that it lie over until tomorrow morning as a special order.

MR. OATES–The point that I made was that the Committee did not recommend that it lie on the table, but made an adverse report. They did not go that far.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM. ‑ The Chair understands that when the Committee submitted the report the Chairman simply moved that it lie on the table to be taken up at the pleasure of the Convention.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike) ‑ The resolution just reported adversely by the Committee, a number of the delegates of this Convention, think is a very important matter, and think that it ought to he considered by the Convention. I therefore move that the


4832                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

consideration of that ordinance be made a special order for 12 o'clock tomorrow.

MR. SANDERS‑I withdraw my motion.

There being no objection the motion was withdrawn.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑I rise to a point of order.

THE PRESIDENT ‑ The question now recurs upon the adoption of the amendment offered by the delegate from Pike, that this matter be postponed and made a special order for tomorrow.

MR. deGRAFFENREID‑ I rise to a point of order. The matter before the Convention now is the report of the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony which has reported the Constitution to the Convention. Under the rules adopted by this Convention, the particular matter of the resolution of Mr. Sanders cannot come up for consideration by this house until this report has been disposed of. You can not displace it without a suspension of the rules for that purpose.

MR. HARRISON‑ The rules were suspended as I understood it.

MR. SAMFORD (Pike)‑Simply for the purpose of making, the report.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The question is for fixing the time.

MR. deGRAFFENREID ‑ And my point is you cannot fix that time because you do not know whether at that time we will be through with this report.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The Chair would like to have anything read from the rules about it. The Chair is not clear on this subject.

MR. WHITE‑ The regular order cannot be displaced without a two-thirds vote.

MR. SAMFORD‑I make the point of order that it can be made by a majority vote at any time. I ask this be made a special order fear tomorrow at 12 o'clock and the majority of this Convention can vote to do so.

MR. PETTUS‑I would like to cite the Chair to Rule 30.

MR. O'NEAL‑ I desire to make this point of order. The special order is the report of the Committee on Harmony and Consistency. It is a special report, but it makes no difference.

MR. PETTUS‑I make the point that unanimous consent was granted to the Committee on Harmony to make its report.


4833

CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentlemen will be seated until the Convention is in order.

MR. REESE‑ The President of the Convention has repeatedly ruled that a majority of the Convention can decide at any time what business it would consider. That question has arisen frequently, and the President of this Convention has uniformly ruled so.  He has further ruled that up to the time of this, that there has been no regular order. There has been no special order,  Mr. President.  We a have been considering the regular order.  The consideration of this report was the only matter of business before this Convention, but assuming that it was a special order, it is an unquestioned rule on general parliamentary practice, and there is no rule to the contrary here, that a majority of the house can at any time refuse to consider, to lay aside one business and take up another, and the gentleman's motion is in order.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The Chair is ready to rule. The Chair is of the opinion that the Convention, having given unanimous consent to this Committee to make a report, and the report having been made, it is in order for the Convention to set it down for a hearing.

MR. GREER (Calhoun)‑I move to lay the motion of the gentleman from Pike on the table.

Upon a vote being taken, a division was called for, and, by a further vote of 50 ayes and 31 noes, the motion was tabled.

Leaves of absence were granted to Mr. Tayloe for today; to Mr. Williams of Elmore for tomorrow.

MR. EYSTER‑I ask unanimous consent to offer a short resolution.

The resolution was read as follows:

Resolution 329, by Mr. Eyster:

Whereas, The members of the Committee on Harmony completed their labors before the reassembling of the Convention and returned to their respective homes; and, whereas, it would be unjust and inequitable for them not to receive their mileage, as other members, there be it

"Resolved, That the members of the Committee on Order, Consistency and Harmony be allowed their mileage the same as the other members of this Convention."

Referred to the Committee on Rules.

MR. PITTS (Tuscaloosa)‑I want to introduce a short resolution to go to the Committee on Rules.


4834                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

The resolution was read as follows:

"Resolved, That when this Convention adjourns on Saturday, August 21st, that it be to reassemble at noon on Tuesday,  September 3rd, at which time the final draft of the Constitution shall be signed by the delegates.

Referred to the Committee on Rules.

MR. REESE‑I sent to the desk a few minutes ago, and asked unanimous consent to introduce a short resolution.

The resolution was read as follows:

"Resolved, first, that all leaves of absence of members of the Convention be, and the same are hereby, revoked, to take effect on Monday, the second day of September. 1901, at 12 o'clock, meridian, and that no further leaves of absence be granted beyond said time.   Second, that the Secretary of this Convention is instructed to notify absent members to return at said time."

Referred to the Committee on Rules.

THE PRESIDENT PRO TEM.‑ The Secretary will read the next Article.

MR. LONG (Walker)‑I move that we do now adjourn.

Upon a vote being taken, the motion was lost.

Article XII was read as follows:

ARTICLE XII

Corporations— Municipal Corporations

220. No person, firm, association or corporation shall, be authorized or permitted to use the streets, avenues, alleys or public places of any city, town or village for the construction or operation of any public utility or private enterprise, without first obtaining the consent of the proper authorities of such city, town or village.

221. The Legislature shall not enact any law which will permit any person, firm, corporation or association to pay a privilege license or other tax to the State of Alabama, and relieve him or it from the payment of all other privilege and license taxes in the State.

222. The Legislature, after the ratification of this Constitution, shall have authority to pass general laws authorizing the counties, cities, towns, villages, district or other political subdivision; of counties to issue bonds, but no bonds shall he issued under authority of a general law unless such issue of bonds be first authorized by a n Majority vote ballot of the qualified voters of such county, city, town, village, district, or other political subdivision of a county, voting upon such proposition. The ballot used at such election shall contain the words "For—  bond issue." and "Against—


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CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 1901

bond issue," (the character of the bond to be shown in the blank space), and the voter shall indicate his choice by placing a cross mark before or after the one or the other. This section shall not apply to the renewal, refunding. or reissue of bonds lawfully issued, nor to the issuance of bonds in cases where the same have been authorized by laws enacted prior to the ratification of this Constitution, nor shall this section apply to obligations incurred or bonds to be issued to procure means to pay for street and sidewalk improvements or sanitary or storm water sewers, the cost of which is to be assessed, in whole or in part, against the property, abutting said improvements, or drained by such sanitary or storm water sewers.

223. No city, town or other municipality shall snake any assessments for the sidewalk or street paving, or for the cost of the construction of any sewers against property abutting on such street or sidewalk so paved, or drained by such sewers, in excess of the increased value of such property by reason of the special benefits derived from such improvements.

224. No county shall become indebted, in an amount. including present indebtedness, greater than three and one-half per centum of the assessed value of the property therein; provided, this limitation shall not affect any existing indebtedness in excess of such 3 1‑2 per centum, which has already been created or authorized by existing law to be created. provided, that any county which has already incurred a debt exceeding 3 1‑2  per centum of the assessed value of the property therein, shall be authorized to incur an indebtedness of 1  1‑2  per centum of the assessed value of such property in addition to the debt already existing. Nothing herein contained shall prevent any county from issuing bonds, or other obligations, to fund or refund any indebtedness now existing or authorized by existing laws to be created.

225. No city, town or other municipal corporation having a population of less than 6,000, except as hereinafter provided, shall become indebted in an amount, including present indebtedness, exceeding 5 per centum of the assessed value of the property therein, except for the construction or purchase of water work, gas or electric lighting plants or sewerage, or for the improvements of streets, for which purposes an additional indebtedness not exceeding 3 per centum may be created; provided, this limitation shall not affect any debt now authorized by law to be created nor any temporary loans to be paid within one year, made in anticipation of the collection of taxes not exceeding one-fourth of the annual revenues of such city or town. All towns and cities having a population of 6.000 or more, also Gadsden, Ensley, Decatur and New Decatur, are hereby authorized to become indebted in an amount, including present indebtedness, not exceeding 7 per centum of the assessed valuation of the property therein, provided that there shall not be included in the limitation of the indebtedness of such last described cities and towns, the following described classes of indebtedness, to wit: temporary loans, to be paid within one year, made in anticipation of the collection of taxes, and not exceeding one-fourth of the general revenues, bonds or other obligations already issued, or which may hereafter be issued for the purpose of acquiring, providing or constructing school houses, waterworks and sewers; and obligations incurred and bonds issued for street or sidewalk improve‑


4836                  

OFFICIAL PROCEEDINGS

ments, where the cost of the same, in whole or in part, is to be assessed against the property abutting said improvements; provided, that the proceeds of all obligations issued as herein provided, in excess of said 7 per centum, shall not be used for any purpose other than that for which said obligations were issued. Nothing contained in this Article shall prevent the funding or refunding of existing indebtedness. This Section shall not apply to the cities of Sheffield and Tuscumbia.

226. No city, town or village, whose present indebtedness exceeds the limitation imposed by this Constitution, shall be allowed to become indebted in any further amount, except as otherwise provided in this Constitution, until such indebtedness shall he reduced within such limit; provided, however, that nothing herein contained shall prevent any municipality from issuing bonds already authorized by law: provided further, this Section shall not apply to the cities of Sheffield and Tuscumbia.

227. Any person, firm or corporation who may construct or operate any public utility along or across the public streets of any city, town or village under any privilege or franchise permitting such construction or operation, shall be liable to abutting proprietors for the actual damages done to the abutting property on account of such construction, or operation.

PRIVATE CORPORATIONS

228. The Legislature shall pass no special act conferring corporate powers, but shall pass general laws under which corporations may be organized and corporate powers obtained, subject, nevertheless, to repeal at the will of the Legislature: and shall pass general laws under which charters may be altered or amended. The Legislature shall, by general law, provide for the payment to the State of Alabama, of a franchise tax by corporations organized under the laws of this State, which shall be in proportion to the amount of capital stock; but strictly benevolent, educational or religious corporations shall not be required to pay such a tax. The charter of any corporation shall be subject to amendment, alteration of repeal under general laws.

229. All existing charters under which a bona fide organization shall not have taken places and business commenced in good faith within twelve months from the time of the ratification of this Constitution, shall thereafter have no validity.

230. The Legislature shall not remit the forfeiture of the charter of any corporation now existing or alter or amend the same, or pass any general or special law for the benefit of such corporation, other than an execution of a trust created by law or by contract, except upon condition that such corporation shall thereafter hold its charter subject to the provisions of this Constitution.

231. No foreign contortion shall do any business in this State without having, at least one known place of business and an authorized agent or agents therein and without filing with the Secretary of State a certified copy of its articles of incorporation or association. Such corporation may be sued in


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any county where it does business, by service of process upon an agent anywhere in the State. The Legislature shall, by general law, provide for the payment to the State of Alabama of a franchise tax by such corporation, but such franchise tax shall be based on the actual amount of capital employed in this State. Strictly benevolent, educational or religious corporations shall not be required to pay such a tax.

232. No corporation shall engage in any business other than that expressly authorized in its charter or articles of incorporation.

233. No corporation shall issue stock or bonds except for money, labor done or property actually received; and all fictitious increase of stock or indebtedness shall be void. The stock and bonded indebtedness of corporations shall not be increased except in pursuance of general laws, nor without the consent of the persons holding the larger amount in value of stock, first obtained at a meeting to be held after thirty days notice, given in pursuance of law.

234. Municipal and other corporations and individuals invested with the privilege of taking property for public use, shall make just compensation, to be ascertained as may be provided by law, for the property taken, injured or destroyed by the construction or enlargement of its works, highways or improvements, which compensation shall be paid before such taking, injury or destruction. The legislature is hereby prohibited from deriving the right of appeal from any preliminary assessment of damages against any such corporations or individuals made lay viewers or otherwise, but such appeal shall not deprive those who have obtained tile judgment of condemnation from a right of entry, provided the amount of the damages assessed shall leave been paid into court in money and a bond shall have been given in not less than double the amount of the damages assessed, with good and sufficient sureties to pay such damages as the property owner may sustain; and the amount of damages in all cases of appeal shall, on demand of either party, be determined by a jury according to law.

225. Dues from private corporations shall be secured by such means as may be prescribed by law: but in no case shall any stockholder he individually liable otherwise than for the unpaid stock owned by him or her.

236. No corporation shall issue preferred stock without the consent of the owners of two-thirds of the stock of said corporation.

237. The legislature shall have the power to alter, amend or revoke any charter of incorporation now existing and revocable at the ratification of this Constitution, or any that may be hereafter created, whenever, in its opinion, such charter shall be injurious to the citizens of this State, in such manner, however, that no injustice shall be done to the stockholders.

238. Any association or corporation organized for the purpose, or any individual, shall have the right to construct and maintain lines of telegraph and telephone within this State, and connect the same with other lines; and the legislature shall, by general law of uniform operation, provide reasonable regulations to give full effect to this section. No telegraph or telephone


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company shall consolidate with, or hold a controlling interest in the stock or bonds of, any other telegraph or telephone company owning a competing line, or acquire, by purchase or otherwise, any other competing line of telegraph or telephone.

239. All corporations shall have the right to sue, and shall be subject to be sued, in all courts in like cases as natural persons.

240. The terns "corporation," as used in this article, shall be construed to include all joint stock companies and all associations having any of the powers or privileges of corporations not possessed by individuals or partnerships.

RAILROADS AND CANALS.

241. All railroads and canals not constructed and used exclusively for private purposes shall be public highways, and all railroad and canal companies shall be common carriers. Any association or corporation organized for the purpose shall have the right to construct and operate a railway between any points in this State, and to connect at the State line with railroads of other States. Every railroad company shall have the right with its road to intersect, connect with, or cross any other railroad, and each shall receive and transport the freight and passengers and cars, loaded or empty, of the others without delay or discrimination.

242. The power and authority of regulating railroad freight and passenger tariff, the locating and building of passenger and freight depots, correcting abuses, preventing unjust discrimination and extortion and requiring reasonable and just rate of freight and passenger tariffs, are hereby conferred upon the Legislature, whose duty it shall be to pass laws from time to time regulating freight and passenger tariffs, to prohibit unjust discrimination on the various railroads, canals and rivers of the State and to prohibit the charging of other than just and reasonable rates, and enforce the same by adequate penalties.

243. No railroad or other transportation company or corporation shall grant free passes or sell tickets or passes at a discount, other than as sold to the public generally, to any member of the Legislature, or to any officer exercising judicial functions under the laws of this State; and any such member or officer receiving such pass or ticket for himself or procuring the same for another shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction shall be fined not exceeding five hundred dollars and at the discretion of the court trying the case, in addition to such fine, may be imprisoned for a term not exceeding six months, and upon conviction, shall be subject to impeachment and removal from office. The courts having jurisdiction shall give this law specially in charge to the grand juries, and when the evidence is sufficient to authorize an indictment, the grand jury must present a true bill.

Any county into car through which such member or officer is transported by the use of such prohibited pass or ticket, shall have jurisdiction of the case, provided, only one prosecution shall be had for the same offense; and


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provided further, that the trial and judgment for one offense shall not bar a prosecution for another offense, when the same pass or ticket is used; and provided further, that nothing herein shall prevent a member of the Legislature who is a bona fide employe of a railroad or other transportation company or corporation at the time of his election, from accepting or procuring for himself or another, not a member of the Legislature or officer exercising judicial functions, a free pass over the railroad or other transportation company or corporation by which he is employed.

244. No railroad company shall give or pay any rebate, or a bonus in the nature thereof, directly or indirectly, or do any act to mislead or deceive the public as to the real rates charged or received for freights or passage; and any such payments shall be illegal and void, and these prohibitions shall be enforced by suitable penalties.

245. No railroad, canal or transportation company in existence at the time of the ratification of this Constitution shall have the benefit of any future legislation by general or special laws other than in the execution of a trust created by law or by contract, except on condition of complete acceptance of all the provisions of this article.

The President resumed the chair.

MR. EYSTER‑ The Convention has been laboriously at work, and I move we now adjourn.

There were expressions of dissent.

MR. PILLANS‑I move as a substitute that we remain in session until eight o'clock.

THE PRESIDENT‑A substitute is not in order.

MR. PILLANS‑ Is it not in order to amend a motion to fix the hour of adjournment.

THE PRESIDENT‑ It is not a motion to fix the hour of adjournment, but is a motion to adjourn.

Upon a vote being taken a division was called for, and by a vote of 38 ayes and 54 noes the Convention refused to adjourn.

MR. KYLE‑I offer an amendment.

MR. LONG (Walker)‑ I move we do now adjourn.

THE PRESIDENT ‑The gentleman from Etowah has the floor, and the Chair cannot recognize the gentleman from Walker.

The amendment was read as follows: "Amend Section 226,

page 68, by adding after the word ‘municipal’ on the eleventh line,

the words ‘except the city of Gadsden."'

MR. KYLE‑ The object of this is the city of Gadsden procured authority from the Legislature to issue one hundred thousand


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dollars of bonds, it already having authority to issue one hundred thousand dollars of bonds, making two hundred thousand dollars indebtedness on an assessed valuation of not exceeding six hundred thousand, which is largely in excess of the indebtedness permitted under the provisions of this Constitution. This amendment is to prohibit the issuance of the bonds which have already authorized by law, insofar as that city is concerned.

MR. deGRAFFENREID –Would not our purpose be affected by simply adding "and Gadsden?”

MR. KYLE‑ The chairman of the committee, Mr. Weakley, says that it would not, and it is at his suggestion that I offer the amendment.

Upon a vote being taken the amendment was adopted.

MR. LONG (Walker)‑We have worked hard all day, and I move we do now adjourn.

Upon a vote being taken a division was called for, and by a vote of 32 ayes and 41 noes, the Convention refused to adjourn.

MR. WHITE‑ I have an amendment.

The amendment was read as follows: "Amend Section 231 by adding after the word `take' in line 12 the following: ‘Any foreign corporation doing business in this State may be sued by the resident citizens of this State in any county in which it does business, whether the cause of action sited on arose in this State or beyond the limits thereof.

MR. WHITE‑ Mr. President. this amendment was not authorized by the Committee or made at the direction of the Committee, but I will state that it is a fact now that a foreign corporation doing business to Alabama cannot be sued by a citizen of Alabama if the cause of action arose out of the State of Alabama. In other words a passenger may take a train at Montgomery, buy his ticket in Montgomery to Atlanta, and as soon as he crosses the Georgia line, get hurt by that train, and though he lived in Montgomery, and the corporation did business in that city, and did a vast deal of it, that citizen of Alabama would have to go either to the State of Georgia, or to the State in which that corporation was incorporated to bring his suit. That often works a great hardship on citizens of Alabama, when they have to go to foreign States to bring suit. They are non‑residents of those States and in all of them that I know anything about, they have to give security for costs before they can bring suit or have to make a deposit in money, and keep that deposit good until the suit is finished. Now these corporations do business in the State of Alabama by the grace of the people of this State, by the courtesy, as it were of the people of Alabama, and they ought to be sued by a citizen of Ala-


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bama when they are doing business in the State by the grace of her citizens.

MR. COBB‑ Does your resolution confine it to corporations doing business in Alabama.

MR. WHITE,‑ It is non‑resident corporations doing business in the State. It provides that they may be sued by a resident citizen of the State.

Now an individual can be sued anywhere that he may be found. If an Alabamian should put his root upon the streets of New York, he can be sued in that State, if they can serve process upon him, and the same thing can be done if he is in any other State.

MR. WALKER‑I desire to ask the gentleman if that general rule of law to which he refers is not confined to actions for injuries resulting in death.

MR. WHITE–No mean the rule of law that is being met by the amendment

MR. WALKER‑ Yes, sir.

MR. WHITE‑ No. It applies to anything, anything on earth, where the cause of action did not arise in this State. I know whereof I speak, because I have been there.

MR. HOWZE‑ You have run against it.

MR. WHITE‑I have run square up against it: have had a citizen of Alabama that could not bring suit in the State and had to go to another State to bring his suit. There is no mistake on earth about that being the law in Alabama today, none whatever and in every State, I believe adjoining the State of Alabama they have provisions, that their citizens may sue these corporations in the State where the citizen resides. I know it is so in Georgia on the east and in Mississippi on the west ; I believe it is so in Tennessee and in Florida. I think this is an important matter for the citizens of Alabama, and I hope the amendment will be adopted.

MR. SORRELL‑I have a substitute that I desire to offer.

The substitute was read as follows:

"Foreign corporations doing business in this State must be sued in the county in which the cause of action arose."

MR. WHITE‑ That is the law in Alabama now.

MR. SORRELL‑I cannot agree with the gentleman from Jefferson, that it would be right to permit corporations to be sued in Alabama for an injury done a citizen, though he be a citizen of Alabama, outside of the State. We are told that in other States


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citizens are permitted to bring suit within their borders for damages accruing in this State.  In reply to that I desire to say that we are not here to atone for the sins of other States, but we are here to establish a law for our own people that is satisfactory to the citizens of Alabama The amendment as offered by myself provides that corporations doing business in Alabama must be sued in the County in which the cause of action arises. It is the law now that they may be sued in the Count‑ in which the right of action arose, but my amendment provides that they must be sued in that county.

The gentleman has placed his amendment of the proposition of a damage still against railroad, and I will apply my amendment and address my argument in that direction.  The proposition as presented by my substitute is simply this, is it right when a cause of action arise in Morgan County on the L. & N.  Railroad say, that some enterprising lawyer in the city of Mobile who has a hankering, we might say, for damage suits against corporations, might secure the person who had suffered damage as his client, and carry him from the county of Morgan to the county of Mobile to bring his suit.   I say, would it be justice to the railroad company, and would it be simple justice to the witnesses that are called from Morgan County to Mobile?   They have no interest in the result of the case, but they are forced to go there on their own expenses. Is it justice?   I have seen the same thing done in my section of the State, and I might say here. in passing, that this is a progressive age. and the practice of the law has progressed, I am informed, especially in damage suits by some well noted lawyers in our sister State to the extent that in the great business centers of our sister State they have established damage suit bureaus with a hospital attachment, and while I admire the pluck and energy of our sister State I fear that if this matter is left open that some of our progressive lawyers who enjoy suits against corporations may follow the lead as laid down by other States. and will have such establishment flourishing in Alabama.   Is it right?   The Jurisdiction in these cases is supposed at least to be established and given for the benefit ; and protection of the citizens of Alabama.  Now. I ask you gentlemen of the Convention, the simple question if it is right to bring a suit in any County in which the corporation does business, and force a witless to go one hundred miles to testify for the plaintiff, He has got no way oil earth to escape going, but if you bring the suit where the damage occur, he could stay at home in his own County, and go to the county and testify and go back to his home. When these damage suits are carried away front the County in which the right of action arose. these witnesses are forced to attend the trial at their own expense, aid who reaps the benefit of it? I know of but two classes of people that reap the benefit, and that is the plaintiffs in the suits, and the expert lawyers in commercial centers who bring


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these suits.  I say, Mr. President and gentlemen of the Convention, that these provisions for bringing suits are not given to oppress, and to carry men that distance to answer, when there is a tribunal wide open for them where the cause of action arose.

MR. COBB‑ I desire to ask the gentleman if the plaintiff cannot select his own forum?

MR. SORRELL‑ The plaintiff can select his own forum, but can the witness refuse to go to that forum, or can he force you to pay his expenses before you force him to go?

MR. COBB‑ He can require you to pay his expenses.

MR. SORRELL‑ Before he goes?

MR. COBB‑ After the first trip.

MR. SORRELL‑ It is the first trip I am talking about. The first trip hurts as bad as the second.  When he has got no money to go.

MR. PILLANS‑ Does not the gentleman assume that the witnesses in a railroad damage suit, as he describes it, necessarily live where the accident occurs?

MR. SORRELL‑ Ordinarily they do.

MR. PILLANS‑ Would not passengers who see an injury all be persons who would have to be brought from the ends of the earth to testify to the injury?

MR. SORRELL— The gentleman is under the misapprehension that damage suits grow out of injuries to passengers on the train. That is not my experience, but on the contrary, quite a number do not, and I might cite an instance. I have in mind one case which happened in my county, and one in the adjoining county of Coosa, where the suits were brought at Birmingham against the Central of Georgia Railway. Witnesses were forced to go there in attendance upon court, and to stay there a week upon their own expense, when if this amendment had been in force, the suits would of necessity have been brought in the county where the cause of action arose and where the witnesses lived, and they could have attended the trial. and staid at their homes without expense. I say that in every county in Alabama there is a forum wide open to these gentlemen who seek to bring these suits, in which absolute justice can be meted out. It is no argument to say that they cannot get justice in these interior counties. We have been living, Mr. President, in these interior counties, and the litigation there has gone smoothly on, men's lives, their liberty and property rights have been protected in these counties, without going to these centers of commercial interests to find counsel to protect their interests. Whenever you place upon them the abso‑


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lute demand that these cases be litigated in the county where the cause of action arises, justice will continue to be meted out to both parties to the cause.

MR. WHITE‑Is it not a fact that under the Constitution as it now stands, they can be sued in any county where they have an agent without reference to where the injury occurs?

MR. SORRELL‑ They can do it, but my amendment says they must do it. They say it would be absolute injustice for a man to be injured in Mobile, and be forced back to Mobile to bring suit. I put the plain proposition to you if there is any merit in this claim? Is it not a pure case of freeze-out against the railroads ? If there is justice in his claim there is enough at stake for him to go to Mobile to try his case, and he will gladly go, and if it is a question of what is nearer right, to carry him to Mobile to try his own case, or to force the witnesses from Mobile at their own expense to come to Birmingham or some other place that his counsel, and himself, might choose to bring them to for their own convenience, I leave you gentlemen to answer the proposition.

MR. GRAHAM (Talladega)‑I move that we adjourn.

MR. deGRAFFENREID– I move to lay the amendment of the gentleman from Tallapoosa upon the table.

THE PRESIDENT‑ The gentleman from Tallapoosa has the floor, his time has not expired.

Leaves of absence were granted to Mr. Browne of Talladega, for tomorrow, Mr. Fitts for tomorrow, Mr. Vaughan for tomorrow, Mr. Burnett for tomorrow, and Mr. Parker of Elmore, for tomorrow ; Mr. Thompson for today and tomorrow, and the hour of 7 o'clock having arrived Convention adjourned until tomorrow morning.