Ordinances and constitution of the state of Alabama : with the constitution of the provisional government and of the Confederate States of America online

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receive any compensation for administering such oaths.

Sbc. 17. That no register and receiver of any land
oiiice or person employed in any such oflace shall, dirccfly
or indirectly, be concerned in the purciiase of any public
land subject to sale and entry in the land olhce, placed
under his charge or in which he is an ollicer, and in case
of violation of this ])rovision by any such ollicer, pioof
thereof being made to the Commissioner of public lauds,
lie shall be forthwith removed fi-om ollicc.

Sbc. is. Tliat the boundaries and contents of the sev-
eral sections, half sections and quarter sections of the
public lands of this State, in anv contest between the
State of Alabama and purchasers therefrom which have


heretofore been run, dctorniined ami ascertained under
the hiws and rogidatioiis of the United States, while said
lands were a part of the public domain of the said United
States, are hereby recognized and established as the boun-
daries and proper contents thereof ; and all the corners
marked in the surveys of said United States shall be es-
tablitvhed as the proper corners of sections or sub-divisions
of sections, which they were intended to designate ; and
the corners of half-quarter sections not marked on the
said surveys, shall be placed as nearly as possible equi-
distant from those two corners which stand on the same
line. And that the boundary lines actually run and marked
in the surveys shall be established as the proper boundary
lines of the sections or sub-divisions for which they were
intended, and the length of such lines as returned in said
surveys shall be held as the true length thereof as between
the State and such purchasers ; and the boundary lines
which shall not have been actually run and marked as
aforesaid, shall be ascertained by running straight lines
from the established corner to the opposite correspond-
ing corner, but in those portions of the fractional town-
ships where no such opposite corresponding corners have
been or can be fixed, the said boundary lines shall be as-
certained by running from the established corners north
and south, or east and west lines, as the case may be, to
the water-course or other external boundary of such
fractional township, conforming to the mean variation
of the established eurvey heretofore made by the United

Sf.c. 10. Every person being the head of a family, or
a single man or woman, over the age of twenty-one years,
or widow, and being a citizen of the State of Alabama,
who, since tlie 11th day of January, 18G1, has made or
shall hereafter make a settlement in person on the public
lands of the State, and who shall inhabit and improve the
same, and who has or shall erect a dwelling thereon, shall
be, and is herel)y, authorized to enter with tiie register


I- of tbc laud office in which such laiui may
lie. sub-divisioiip, any numboi" of a

!'■' ;.c Imndrcd and sixty, or a quarU. .vv..,.;o;

in inclnde the rosidonce of such cluimaut, upon
<o the Htate of Alabama the minimum price of
' 'ubject, however, to the follov ■ - ' •;;'•- • •
. lis, viz: No person shrill bi
than one pre-emptive right b}- virtue of this act; uo per
- •: ' is ihe [troprictor of three hundred and i\\ '

iiind in any ^tale or Territory of the Confed'
btatc^, :in<l no person who shall quit or abandon his resi-
d II liis own land, to leside on the public lands in

I. ^', shall acquire any right of pre-emption under

this iut ; 11) hmda, or sections of land, reserved to th.
'" cs alternate to other sections, granted by said

i ;.., . . ...Uis Government to this State for the construc-
tion of any canal, railroad or other public improvement ; n^
sections, or fractions of sections, included within the limit-
of any corporated town ; no portion of the public laiid
wliich lias been selected as the cite for a sity or town,
and no hmds included in any reservation, by any treaty or
laws of Ihe Unite<l Htates, previous to the 11th January
18G1, or reserved in said laws for salines or for other jtur-
poses, or on which are situated any known salines, t^hall
be liable lo entry under and by virtue of the provisions
of thi^ M^'Otion.

Sec, 20. When two or more persons have settled on
the same quarter section of land, the right of pre-emptip# j
."hall Itc in him or her who commenced or shull commoner
Iho first improvement : Provided, such per:jon shall con-
form to the other provisions of this law, and all questions
/lit of pre-emption, arising between difTorent
■' . lii be aeltlcd by the register and reccivijr of

the district within which the land is situated, subject to
an ariH :il to and a revision by the Commissioner of public

^:^' Prior to any entries being made under the

provisions of this ordinance, (section nineteen) proof of
the settlement and improvement thereby required, shall
be made to the satisfaction of the register and receivef of
the land district in which such lands may lie, agreeably
to such rules as shall be prescribed by the Commissioner
of public lands, who shall be entitled to receive fifty cents
from each applicant for his services, to be rendered as
aforesaid, and all assignments and transfers of the right
hereby secured, prior to the iesuing of the patent, shall
be null and void.

Sec. 22. Before any person claiming the benefit of
this act shall be allowed to enter such lands, he or she
shall make oath, before the register and receiver of the
land district in which the land is situated, or before some
other person authorized by the laws of this State to ad-
minister oaths, that he or she never had the benefit of any
right of pre-emption under this act, that he or she is not
the owner of three hundred and twenty acres of land in
any State or Territory of the Confederate States, nor hath
he or she settled upon and improved said lands to sell the
same on speculation, but in good faith to appropriate it to
his or her own exclusive use ol' benefit; and that he or
she has not directly or indirectly made any agreement or
contract, in any Way or manner, with any person or per-
sons whatsoever, by which the title which he or she might
acquire from the government of the State, should inure
in whole or in part to the benefit of any person, except.'
himself or herself; and if any person taking such oath
shall gwear falsely in the premises, he or she shall be sub*
ject to all the pains and penalties of perjury, and shall
forfeit the money which be or she may have paid for said
land, and all right and title to the same; and any grant
or conveyance which he or she shall make, except in the
hands of bona fide purchasers, for a valuable ponsidera-
tion. sliall be null and Void, and it shall be the duty of
said diftrict ofUcer to file a certificate of said oath in hi?
ofiice, and to transmit a duplicate copy to the State land


office, either of which shall he good ami siiffioiont cvi-
h was administered a«^cordinix t-'

>" ^vcr any person has settled or shui. .. ;

. improve any tract of land, subject at the time of
FCltlement to private entry, and shall intend to purchase
the same under the provisions of this law in regard to
pre-emption, such person sliall, in the first case, withiu
ihree montiis, after the 11th of January. 18(31, and,
in the last case, within thirty davn alter the date of sucli
ecttlomcnt, file with the register of the proper district, a
written statement, describing the land settled upon, and
dcclariiiic the intention of such person to claim the same
under the provisions of this act, and slialj, where such
settlement is already made, within twelve months after
the passage of this act, and where it shall hereafter be
made within the same period after the date of such set-
tlement, make proof, affidavit and payment herein re-
quired, and if he or she shall fail to file such written state-
ment as aforesaid, or shall fail to make such affidavit,
proof and payment within twelve mouths aforesaid, the
tract of land so settled and improved shall be subject to
the entry of any other purchaser.

Sec. 24. in any case where a party entitled to claim
the benefits of this pre-em[>tion law shall have died befoio
consummating his claim, by filing in due time all the pa-
pers essential to the establishment of the same, it shall
be competent for the executor or administrator of the es-
tate of such part}', or one of the heirs, to file the necessary
... iQ complete the same: Provu/cd, the entry in such
liall be made in favor of "The heirs" of the de-
ceased pre-emptor, and a ]tatent thereon shall cause the
title to inure to said heirs, as if their names had been spe-
cially nientioned.

Sec. 25. That the pre-emption laws of the State shall
extend over the alternate reserved sections of public
hinds along the lines of uU the rail roads in the State,
wherever public lands have heretofore been granted by


acts of the Congress of the Uuited States^ au^ also wher-
ever the State may hereaftel' grant lands to rail rdads, an,d
that it shall be the privilege of the persons residing on
any of said j'eserved lands to pay for the same in soldier's
bounty laud warrants, owned by any' citizen of this Stati-
on the 11th January, 1801, estimated at a dollar and
twenty-five cents per acre, or in any funds receivable for
State taxes,^or both together, in pircference to any other
person, and the price to be paid in all' such caSos shall be
two dollars and fifty cents per acre. *

Sec. 2G. That every settler on public lands which have
been or nia}' be withdrawn from market in consequence
of proposed rail roads, and who had settled or shall settle
•thereon, prior to the time when the lines of such rail roiids
have, been or may be definitely fixed, shall be entitlecl -to
pre-emption at the ordinary minimum to the lands settled
on and cultivated b}' them: Provided, they shall prove up
their rights and pay for the land entered, according to the
rules £iud regulations prescribed in other cases of pre-
eijLptiou claimants.

'•Sijc. 27. That every person making application at any
of the district ) and ofiices in the State, for the purchase
at private sale of a tract of land, shall produce to the
register and receiver a memoratudum in writing, describ-
ing the tract which he shall enter, Hy,.ttie .number of the
section, half section or quarter, (as the case may be,) and
of the township and range, subscribing liis namq thereto,
which memorandum the register shall file and preserve in
his office.

Sjic. 28. That all the public ]..lnL-^ wi tlic Slate, the
sale of which is authorized by law, may, when ottered at
privato sftle, be purchased at the o|:»tion of the purcJjaser.
cither in entire sections, half sections, quarter sections,,
half quarter sections, or quarter quarter sections; and

id lands shall be subject to sale at the following stained
prices, to-wit : Such lands as were reserved by the I'nited
States" on the 11th Jannarv. If^m. from s;ilo. in <:r>iise-

.tea i->v saiii ^'(xvniiiiciit ii> ur.> -^kiu'. initlr^'
■! of aiiy ertnul, rail iv)u«l, or oUut internal i»n-
j.iwn-eirtftut; and ^ficU laT]<l8ft^thmlState plmll liercalirr
I'^rrw fiH" similar purpo.-^es, sliaH not be sold for l.-ss thnii
r\Y.> (Jolhu-6 and lifty ci-nts aero; all thu f»t.h*i i»n1»lio
lanil-5 *;lmH' be sold un<I entere^'at a prib^ notless tliun
niio dollar unJ twenty-five oetite per acre : Prorvlnl, that
nono'of flic land« reserved lVon> eaJo to pre-eiuptors in
section niiietocn olf tins ordinance, shall be subject
try, ujuler tliia section, exceptinf^ those lying within six
niiK;.^ of rail roads, and knOwu as the :t! tomato oven sec-
tinn:= itlonjs: said roads.

^9. That all the lands of the State, 'vyhioh. t^hall
ijiiv ijiC'U in market, either under the laws of the United .
States or under the laws of tiiis' JState, or under the lawl^'
of both takcu together, for ten years and upwards, prior
to tho time of application to enter the same ni^der Ibc
provipiony pf this ordinance, aud still remaining unsold.
>-haU be subject to sale At the prieeof one (Jollar per;ir:
aiid idl the lands of tlie State that shall have been, jv",
mark\.*t f(jr tiftocn years or upwards, as aforesaid; and stirj*< •,
romaining unsold, shall be- subject to sale at seveuty-ti**- -
. 'iits (*ef acre; jmd all lauds of the State that ^hull have
huririn market for twenty years or upwards, as atbi«- <
^aid, and still renuiining unsold, shall be subject to sai^'"
at fiity oonts perafci'ej. and all tho lands.of tho'Stirte that
shall liavc hecn in market for twenty-live years and u-p-
Wiinl.-, as aforesaid, and still remaining untiold, shall be* •

to gailtrnt twenty-five cents per aQ,re;; and all laud-
wl ihe State that shall have been in market for thirty
yuars oj taote, sluvjl be subject to sale at twelve and-a-half
centij per acKe:' Provided, this section shall not bo sD'ogn-
strut'd as to extend to lands reserved from entry by pre-,.
,....,,t,...w^ lindcr section nineteen of this ordinance': An(*'
fiirtha', that 'no person shall be entitled, under
the piHn'isipns of this section, to enter niprc than three
hundred and twontv aCre.s of hnid.


Sec. 80. Any .person applying to enter any of the
■aforesaid land.^, shall be required to make affidavit before
the register and receiver of the proper land oificG, or some
person authorized by law to administer oaths, that he or
she enters the same for his or her own use, and for the
purpose ot Actual settlement and chltivation, or for the
use of an adjoining farm or plantation owned or occupied
by him or herself ; and, together with said entry, he or she
has not acquired from the United States, or from this State,
under the provisions of the laws of the United States, or
of this State, mok'e than three hundnnl and twenty acres
at the graduated price.

\'.Sbc. 31. That upon every reduction in price, under
the provisions of this ordinance, the occupant and settler
upon the lands shall have the right of pre-emption, at
such graduated, price, upon the.^ame terms/ conditions,
restrictions and limitations upon whith the public land.-^
of the State aro now subject to the right of pre-emption,
until within thirty days preceding the next graduation or
rqdudtion.that shall take place, arid if not so purchased,
ehftll .again .be subject to right of pre-emption for
elljven mont/l^s as before ; and so on from time to time as
reductions take place.

Sec. 32.; All patents for lands hereafter entered under
the provisions of this ordinance, or located linder any
Avarrant for bounty land, issued by the United States and
owned by any citizen of Alabama on the 11th Jauunry.
1861,.'^liall be issued in the mime of the State of Alabama,
and under the seal of the State land office, and beaigned
by the Governor of the State and countersigned by the
Commissioner of public lauds, and shall be recorded in
the said office, in books to be kept for tlic ptirpose.

Sec. 33. That in all cases where i»atents for public
lands may hereafter be issued in pursuance of this ordi-
nance to a person who shall die before the date of such
patent, tho title to tho land designated thqrein,^haH inure
to and become vested in the heirs, devis^eSj'^M, «ssig«dQi

if th^patcut ha<l • ' -
'ir.riD^ iifc.
of nuv rlaim to land in tliie Stnto,*

n eoniinnod 1>y Irw, utirt in •wM«5li '^
ulc by tlio confirmatory ?t:i'
. ;iii(l in .'itl .•::-,-, wliorc Jai.
' ;)d warrant i

!id cuililicatcsot
. .4.,,. ..•;..,,» iitbllicrcfoi'Iiavc ....... -

' prcvrous to fl^c pa^sAixo of the ordinan ■ (
of f inll and lawi'nl for patents to -i^.-

liMi T u. • initliority of this State, and af^ prcsonLcjt
■5 r^piVTiintT^t* for ttio .i;?suanco of patients in oflj6r oa-
iiiade by pifrtllftsei'S' fit any of li;
;;;<.• i!ie 11th vliiy of .Taiinafy, l.'^Gl, arc licri'-
1 '-Miifirmod. and^bc Commiwsiouer of public-
l>atc n tB- far t J)io 9>itm e ^1 tlil> n}j mv.
<u' ll "1 iVlab.unu, as'ln other easos. ' ' . . "

"' Tiiat all bonnty land warranto jo^nod i.v tlj,.

icMit of th<) Uniti^d-Statefl to any'ei;:

;ind pwHcd •Ijy.'such citizen or his

M.^11. ■ I n iw-. ■Mrtho'll'th d^y of "January, 1881, ni:i\

bo !rK-nt('d'by sncli citizen^ his hctrs, exceutoi's or aclmni-

i ;iy1{iiS(l ^subject .t<i' private aa]e or entry

>;tiid rcijylations in fffrce iu this' State hpqn

■ iinblir" lands after the itassn;ie of thi*' ordi-

S: I liat every citizen of this State, M-Jiotlior

)ii;ih ih who t5haTl , not, iji hi.s or Jjtsl' oAVn right,

' land, and\vh0 isat tlr© e«TJi<3 time th/P

brad of ;t liiu^ily, "hall ha entitled to .enter eiirhty aeroe
■'.' '"nd free' of all eosts and t•har^a^'5, provided the appH-
-lifll! mnkc nflidnvif before gonio ijnalifted oflicer of

(1 enter$ t^e said hind for 'h

I 1 r i!iiii<(' 1 Ml- ini-st'lf. und that he or fihe v^'ill

(• '1 improve niid reside njton the same ^vithin

fwe1^ ii}^, tvhirli s;iid land phall innre

■ to tiie ui>c^ami,Ucui;iit ot said ajipUcaiit, and shall bo ex-


einpt from sale by oxe'cution or otlicnvise without the
con pent of tlio wife duly attested in writing before a

Sf/C.' 37. That as soon afe" practicable' aftet- the presage
of this ordinance, the Governor of this State shall issue
bis [troclnmation deelaiMng that the waste and ilnappro-
priated land? of the State shall, at tbe expirati6n of tliirty
days froni th©' date thereof, be 6,ubject to eale or private
entry at the. several land oflices in the State.

Skc. -88; ■ Where ';1n actual setilor on the public lands
has fiought, or shall hereafter attempt, to locate the laijd
•settled on and improved by liim with a military land war-
rant, and when, froii\ any cause, an error has occurred in
making $aid location, sai<lt. 'settler may be authorized to
relinquish the land so erroneously located and to locate
such wa'rrantupon the land. so settled upon and improved
bj' him if .the same shall then 'bti '^a^ht, and if not, upon
any otlicr vacant land, on making "proof "of these facts to-
tbo satisfaction of the land officers according to such rules
and regulations as may be prescribed by the Commissioner
of public lands.
V.""" Sec. .30. That the Coinmisijiouer ot" pul)lic lands shall
* '^Vie po^'cr, and he is hereby required^ to cause to be
prmtcdand distributed amongst the several lati4' offices, nr
tbe State all such bhinks an4 forms as he^rnay <leojn ne-
.cc^sary to facilitate the entries of binds by purchasers,
^^'d to tjnable the lawl offi(^ers to keep accurate acco-jjuts
and make prompt and correct retiirns of all sales in. iheir
^ respective offices; and aiiid Commissioner. is authorized
^ •^ ptijseribe feuch rules and regula,tion« for'th^ entry. atid.
*i«le of lands, a^id tbe location of land warrants iiot hej'eiu
Y^rovided for, as he may find necessaVy to cx'pe*^'^ ■ '^ •
hnsinn^s of the several land offices, and «nsuvc t!

;iccarato pcrformantc of Ih^ duties'bf the rcgis-
!• ! - and roceivors thereof • ,' ' /

S;.-. 40. "Vrhet;cvor ili'' C\iimriiT:?iniT(*r of pnblir^'lands
lied fbni ^aiid

Ve^iire iljp be cbau^ed, and dillorcnt linos et^taWisbc'd for
«n.\d (U^ricU'tm ns to "mak9«th« Jan<l offices more accepta-
1.' ' of tlnv State resident in said di^tricte,

li /.cd and rofpiired to issue his proc'lRm9.r

1 i»ul)lisli the psime \\\ ^ u'cwa^iappr prlnt(»d at the
.i CJoverinnont, aiul<'.nus(» tlio Kamo also to bepostied
.li ' 1 l;uid oflicc to be aftoetcd thereby, at Ica^^t fttxty
d^.^ • th(ypropi>sod,oHaMj?e, in which proclaniatioji

^aivl CoiMini^'hioncr shall designate the propo:?cd limits of
the. <ntlcrcnt laud districts ; and, at the expiration of isaid
poA'iod, he shall fix and establisli the boundaries as dcsig -
iiyited in, said proclamation or establish such other liiiea as
bo slr.dl thii\k most advi<5al»le, of which he shall give puh-
Ih- notice in a lanvep^iper pnb1,ij?hed at the^scat of Govcrn-
'lirtiitfor sixty days', at the, expiration of which tin^o ike
Twundary shall be as established by said Coinniissioncr,ftnd
lie i«liiill cause a ti-ansfer of all. books, papers, records. I'lie.,
iiecvissary-to c«iifdrni t.o the. "new distncts.

t<i:<\ 41. When any mistalve maybe made by the jmr-
chaser ofpul^ic lands OHtGring.a tract different fi'om that
be intended 4o purplwise'iii c'onseqneiice of'any ertiaf ^]it*
istin;; in the land office ov'fi^i^owinij out of any infornisi*/
lion ^-iven by,,or mistake of any r^^gister a»id rccciyer'
(hci'tjof, 54k1 when any mistake piay be. made by the pur-
chjisw of any tvactof land not intended to b.i3'entdred,.by
mi^ta^c of the trijie nnmbea's of the tract intended to be
inirtfhiwed, where the tract thus erroneously entered does
n,Al in: qfumtity •exceed oTiedialf section, and wlien; the
cirtiifoafe of the original purchaser has not been assigned
or hi- riiiht in any way transferred, and where six month's
IV' iihe the.entry'shall liave.'b«^on .made may not

. ljav<j elapsed; or tlie patent issued for the tract errone-
ously entered, «ai4 purchaser in each 6f the above stated
caK'S, or, in caseot'ihis death, hie legal rcpreseptativ«,8"
may tile his^iflidavit of the facte, and that every reason^

bio '.'■ "<ion had been used toavoid the error, and there- '-<

uj' titled to change his entry and transfer the pay-

MiKously enleied to that intended


to be entered if -unsold, but if gold, to «iny other tract
liable to entry, provided that nothing herein'containcd
shall affect the rights of third persons.

Sec. 42. That every pei'son ti'Gspassing on the public
lands may be indicted and fined not less than ten dollars
for each trespass by the circuit court of tlie county in
which the trespass may bo committed.

Adopted, Marcb 20," 1861.


In relation to thd Greenville- Land O^ce.

Sec. 1. Be it ordained by the jKople of Alabama, ia ■ Con-
rcniirii assembled; That the register and ctfthe lund
ofiicc at (Greenville be authorized to obt,ain for the use
of said offices copies of all patents, and qf ^11 lx)o"ks,
maps and other papers of said oiSces receiitly burned^ as
far as in their power to supply ovevy paper, docuineut,
map, b'ook, &c., thus destroyed : and the expense of all
said matters shall be allowed in their account?^ on setth -
meiit with the authorities of this Stote.

Adopted,;Mareh-20, 1^1.

No. 4'J.] AN UiiDiNA^'('I:

In relation to F(^rfoited Lands.

Sec. 1. Be^ a ordained hj the ])Ojpli of ' of ^AH-

'i'-r:ua ill Convention assembled, That certificate- fer.-^

of the Ifttc tJnittd States land ofllce farmui.\ ^Mjd oii
land foffeited eli<ill be receivable in payment tor any ol
tlie publiciands oi^ this State stilS||ect to^piivatc entry^ a?
80 much money, in piirsunucc and in accordance with au


tivt^i-i iJiiited Btatcs of the 23(1 duv oi Afuy,

•1 > of the
, , ..... ..,, ..,. -f of the

yxiv ', such foifci lauds

coi, uitiiin the present boundiui ito of

AUnniiia, and the parties forf'"'- ' .iiu nu^v vuiiuiing
were, ami arc now resident citi. ; iiis tState.

Adopted, Alai-eli.20,. 1801.


!t-Q (inLhorizO" uixl direct, tke ; (JaVciifOjp to r^iseind a cou-
t'i:aet thoie^ij referred to.

('/, 'fijut the Guveriiar oi the •
: . .. ..i.w .iC Ir licroby required tornjscinS

:^ ■ .ore tJiitered into Ijy hirn, on thi- part of;

^vith Jauioa Ii.:l.*o\vell, S. y. Iloustoi' 'i-

uic purpone of siolecting and locating ccriain
■ le.-igMtttcd in the iicts of Con£2:re;jS of 2Htii Scpteni-
* l4ef,.-l"^0, Kird 3d Mavcli, 1857, as swaqip and overflowed
latid?*, nnd^ Hat Im iv unlliorizHd to settle with them for
sncli .-"i'vit,'e.s fts they have already, rendered the iStatc,
u]^. :iiid reason ah 1 tcrn*6 i Proiide4, thit tlje ton-

sui^t uf ftuid. Conunissiouers to the rescissioji of/Biij«i Qoa-,.
tract shall- bo first had and obtained. - ." .

•S£c. 2. , J^o U/urUiir ordained, That all land aclectca
by tlifi ^id ComiMis»sionev8 as swamp and ovorliowed
landsj hut for'whrch wo patents were i.ssued by the United
SJutCb to this State, are hereby declared to be public
laud.•^ of the State, iiini aubjeet to disposal; under the laws
V^' ' ' f*'>i' tbe .sale and disposal of other public land8


i, March 20, 1861.

acts of the Congress of tho Linitod States, and also wher-
ever the State may hereafter grant lands to rail roads, and
that it shall be the privilege of the persona residing on

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Online LibraryAlabamaOrdinances and constitution of the state of Alabama : with the constitution of the provisional government and of the Confederate States of America → online text (page 5 of 11)