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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or othor State bo L'-iiai-jntocd ; or any v
cr liinglo.'i- u away, unh



urroncc of each house, voting, in cii-c^
y. \ : 1 <i for in thi:* section. l,\v (ti/cs iv\<] no'j? »■) 1h^
placed upon the journal <.



v-.a hi R S£c. 1» The supreme executive power of this

(t v(rnor. * ^

State phnll be vested in a chief magistrate, who
Miall be styled the (rovernor of the 8tatc of Ala-

r,<,«-> r, ^i:<- 2. Tlic ('ovc'iuor shallbo elected by the
' '^" ' qualified electors, at the time and places when
they shall respectively vote for RepresentatiN-es.

BiiorB»,iK»w -Seg. 3. The returns of every election' for Gov-
ernor, shall be sealed up, and transmitted to the
seat of i^ovcrnnient, directed to the speaker of tli% *
House of Ivepregeutatives, who shall, during the
wtnud. " first week of the session, open and publish them
in presence of both houses of the General Assem-
i*(\j.-aiu* lo biy. The person having the highest number of
''"''■ • votes shall be Governor, but if two or more shall
Ti. bo equal and highest in votes, one of them sliall

he chosen Governor by the joint vote of both
coT.i.Mcu houses. Contested elections for Governor shall
' ."** bo determined by both houses of the General As-
souibly, in sncli manner n.s shall be prescribed by

Tirm i>f of. Sr.c. 4. ■ TJio Governor shall hold his oftioe for
tl»e term of two years, from the time of his instal-
luliot), and until his successor shall be qualified ;
but bhall not be elogible for more than four years
in any term of six years ; he shall be at least thir'*

... • i. • .

tj7^rs (5rage, shall be a citizen of the Sfate of
Alabamp,, and native of oue of the States or Ter- ^'^"'""^"
ritorics, lately styled the United States of Amer-


Sec. 5. He shall, at stated times, receive a
compensation for his services, which shall not be«'on- ^
increased or diminished during the term for which
he shall have been elected.

Sec. 6. He shall be commander-in-chief of the comman-
nrray and navy of this State, except when acting **"'*""='''^'-
with any other power, in which case, the General
Assembly shall fix his rank.

Sec. 7. He may require information in writing May require
from the officers of the executive department, on r/oxealti'Te
any subject relating to the duties of their respec-"^"^*""
tive offices.

Sec. 8. He may, by proclamation, on extraor-,
dinary occasions, convene the General Assembly convening

. . 1 ^ , . „. , and ad.iourti-

at the seat oi government, or at a diiterent place, inguonerai
it that shall have become, since their last adjourn-
ment, dangerous from an enemy, or from conta-
gious disorders; in case of disagreement between
the two houses, with respect to the time of ad-
journment, he may adjourn them to such time as
he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the
next annual meeting of the General Assembly.

Sec. 9. He shall, from time to time, give to^,^^
the General Assembly, information of the state of *''V
the government, and recommend to their cousid-*''^"
eration sucli measures as he mov docin cxpc-

fnitlifullv executed


10. IL^^UaW f.i..- ■•■..•.. fl,.; il.n 1.

k^iA. 11. ill all ciiiiiiiial ami iioiial cusci<. ex-
cept ill tb()?e of treason uml inqicacluTiont, li'ct^liall
Hiipowrm have power to ffraiit reprieves and pardons, nnd
«■« remit hues and forfeitures, under sucli rules ana
regulations as shall bo prescribed by law. In
cases df. treason, be sball have power, by, and with
the advice and consent of the Senate, to grant ro-
}trieve6 and pardons; and be may in the recess of ,
the Senate, respite the sentence until tbc end of"^
the next session of the General Assembly. ^ •

Sec' 12. There shall be a Seal of this State, •.
which shall be kept by the Governor, and used by
him ofliciallv. —; <

6bc. 13. All commissions shall be in the namo,<^
and by the authority of the State of Alabama, be
sealed with the State Seal, signed by the (tover-
iior, and attested by the Secretary of State. \,

Six. 14. There shall be a v:i_c,\ ,„iy of Slate, "^
ppointed ^by a joint vote of botb houses of the
General Assembly, who shajl continue in olHce
diiriiiK-the term of two years. He shall keep a
fai;' register of all oflioial acts and proceedings of
tli€ Governor, and shall, when required, lay the
sain(», and all papers, minutes and vouchers rel^-'.^'
live thereto, before the General Assembly ; an*d •
hlmM pe4*form such other duties as iuixy be re-
<■] aired of him by law.



how lUlnl

1 . Vacancies that may happen in offices,
. the appoijiiment ol whieli is vested \n the Geneiwiji^"
• Asecmbly, shall be filled by the Governor, daring"


tlie recess of the General Assembly, by granting,
commissions, which shall expire at the end of the
next session.

Sec. 16. Every bill which shall have passed

•' ^ Governor's

both houses of the General Assembly, shall be p°'«'<^" "i"'

•^ ' duty in rela-

presented to the Governor ;. if he approve, heshall «ont.Miiii?.
sign it, but if not, he shall return it with his ob-
jections, to the house in which it shall have origi-
nated, who shall enter the objections at large upon
the journals, and proceed to reconsider it ; if after
such reconsideration, a majority of the whole
number elected to that house shall agree to pass
the bill, it shall be sent, with the objections, to
the other house, by which it shall likewise be re-
considered ; if approved by a majority of the whole
number elected to that house, it shall become a
law : but in such cases, the votes of both houses
shall be determined by yeas and nays, and the
names of the members voting for or against the
bill shall be entered on the journals of each house
respectively : if any bill shall not be returned by
the Governor within five days, Sunda3's excepted,
after it shall have been presented to him, the same
shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed
it, unless the General Assembly, by their adjourn-
ment, prevent its return, in which case it shall not
be a law.

Sec. 17. Kvciy order, resolution, or vote, to
which the concurrence oi both houses maybe nec-tionstou^ '

essary, except on questions of adjournnieot, shall Bfits.
be presented to the Governor, and, before it shall
take effect, be approved by bim, or being disap-
] roved, shall be repassed by both houses, accord-
ing to the rules and limitations prescribed ju the
case of a bill.

]8. In case of the impeachment of the
•r. ]jis removal from oftice, Uoatli, refusal
resignation, or absence from the State.
a^»^i*' tlio I'lfaident of the Senate shall exercise all the
power and authority appertaining to the office of
G-overnor, until the time, pointed out by tliisCon-
gtitution for the election of Governor, shall arrive,
unless the General Assembly shall provide by law
for the election of a Governor to fill such vacan-
cy, or until the Governor absent or impeached.
Jjhall return or be acquitted.

> : . 1 ■. If, during the vacancy of the office o)
n • cr Hi. Governor, the President of the Senate shall be im-
*''"'"'" peached, removed from office, refuse to qualify,
resign, die, or be absent from the State, the
Speaker of the House of Ilepresentatives, shall, iir
like manner, adniiniHtor the government. If
tljere is no President of the Senate, nrno Speaker
ofthellouse of Represcntativr Secretary

of State shall exercise all the dulics and powers
appertaining to the office of Governor, until the
office of Governor is filled, as provided by this


t-L'.. L'U. TIjo I'resident of the Senate and
Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the
Secretary of State, during the times they respec*
tively administer the government, shall receive
the same compensation which the Governorwould
have received, had he been employed in the du-
ties of his office.

Si:c. 21 . The Governor shall always reside dii-

*^.-r<to V ring the session of the General Assembly, at the

plftcQ where their session may be held, and at all



other times, wherever, in their opinion, public •^

good may require.
■ »' ■

K ■ Sec. 22. No person shall hold the office of

••• ... (rovernor

Governor, and any other office or commission, civ- ""t toi»>i<i

^ "^ any office.

il or military, either in this State, or under any
State, or any other power, at one and the same

Sec. .23. A State Treasurer and a Comptroller ^^^^^^^^^^
of public accounts, shall be biennially elected by ['"o',',^^""'^-
joint vote of both houses of the General Assem- -'^TiSl'*
bly. '^

Sec. 24. A sheriff shall be elected in each
county by the qualified electors thereof, who shall elected;

J •' i^ term of


hold his office for the term of three years, unless vice and

♦^ \ qualifica-

soouer removed, and' who shall not be eligible to "un-
serve either as principal or deputy, for the three
succeedinoj years. Should a vacancy occur subse- Vacancies,*,

° "^ •' how filledjjf

quent to an election, it shall be filled by the Gov- "••

ernor, as in other cases, and the person so appoipt-
cd shall continue in office until the next general
election, when such vacancy shall be filled by the
qualified electors, and the sheriff then elected shall
continue in office for three years.


Sec. 1. The Genei*al Assembly shall provide jniuvt,,,,
by law. for organizing and disciplining the militia*^'**"' ^*''


of this State.

Sec. 2. Any person who conscientiously scru-
ples to bear arms shall not be compelled to do so. who ax-

11-11 • ' cimiL

but shall pay au equivalent for personal service. ;v '.vv^



8ec, 3. The Governor shall have power t(tc4!r"
forth the militia to execute the laws ol the tState,
to suppress insurrections, and repel invasions.

.SiA. 4. All ofHccrs of the militia shall be
elected or appointed in such manner as may be
prescribed by law : Provided, that the General As-
" ' ' senihly shall not make any such elections or ap-
pointments, other than tboseof adjutants-general,
and i^uarter-masters general.

Aias,.ve.. Sec. 5. The Governor shall appoint his aids-
^"* "'''^'"" de-camp ; majors general, their aids-de-camp, and
all division and staff officers ; brigadiers general
shall appoint their aids, and all other brigade staflf
officers ; and colonels shall appoint their regimen-
tal staff officers.

,.,,,,,, ^^ Sic. 6. The General Assembly shall iix, by
■ law, the method of dividing the militia into di-
.7st«ii. ■■'^' visions, brigades, regiments, battalions, and com-
panies : and shall iix the rank of all staff officers.




Sec. 1. The judicial power of this State shall
be vested in one Supreme Court, Circuit Courts to
be held in each county in the State, and such in-
ferior courts of law and equity, to consist of not
more than five members, as the General Assem-
bly may, from time to time, direct, ordain and es-

Sec. 2. The Supreme Court, except in cases
otherwise directed by this- Constitution, shall,


have appellate jurisdiction oiih^, which shall be
co-cxtensive with the State, under such restric-
tions and regulations, not repugnant to this Con-
stitution, as may from time to time, be prescribed
by law : Provided, that the Supreme Court shall
have power to issue writs of iiyunctlon, mandtimus,^
quo warranto, habeas corpus, and such other reme-
dial and original writs as may be necessary to give
it a general supcrintendance and control of infe
rior jurisdictions.

Sec. o. The Supreme Court shall be holden atgupren^e
the seat of government, but may adjourn to a dif- hoidel,!'''^'^^
ferent place, if that shall have become dangerous
from an enemy or from disease.

Sec. 4. The State shall be divided into con-

, 1 . . 1 11 • state to be

venient circuits, and each circuit shall contain not<iivide.i into


less than three, nor more than six counties ; and
for each circuit there shall be appointed a Judge,
who shall, after his appointment, reside in the cir-
cuit for which he may be appointed.

Sec. 5. The Circuit Court shall have orijxiual , .....
jurisdiction in all matters, civil and criminal, with- coortr'^
in this State, not otherwise excepted in this Con-
stitution ; but in civil cases, only where the mat-
ter or sum in controversy exceeds fifty dollars.

Sec. G. a Circuit Conrt shall be held in each
county in the State, at least twice in every year,
and the judges of the several Circuit Courts may
hold courts for each other, when they ma}^ deem
it expedient, and shall do so when directed l»y

Sec. 7. The General Assembly shall have

When li<»ld



power to establish a Court or Courts of Chancery,
with oriifiiial and appellate equity jurisiljction ;
Provided, that the judges of the several circuit
courts shall have power to issue writs of injunc-
tion, returnable into the Courts of Chancery.

Sec. 8. The General Assembly shall have
power to establish, in each county witiiin this
•State, a Court of Probate, for the granting of let-
ters testamentary, and of administration, and for
orphans' business.

Sec. 9. A competent number of Justices of
;'*"the Peace shall be appointed in and for each coun-
ty, in such mode and for such term of oflico as the
( reneral As.scmbly may direct. Their jurisdiction
in civil cases shall be limited to causes in which'
the amount in controversy shall not exceed fifty
dollars; and in all cases tried by a Justice of the
Peace, right of ai)peal shall be secured, under such
rules and regulations as may be prescribed by

Sec. 10, Judges of the Supreme and Circuit
j'^uti '. Courts, and Courts of Chancery, shall, at stated
ttmes, receive for their services a compensation,
which shall be Ji.\ed by law, and shall not be di-
minished during their continuance in olfice ; but
thoy siiall receive no fees or perquisites of office,
nor hold any other office of j^rotit or trust under
this State, or any other [lowcr.

Sec. 11. Chancellors and Judges of the Su-
lireme Court shall be elected by joint vote of both
hou.scs of the General Assembly ; but at and af-
ter the session of the General Assembly, to be
held in the winter of the year eighteen hundred



and forty-nine-fifty, the General Assembly shall
provide by law for the election of judges of the cir-
cuit Courts, by the qualified electors of their cir-
cuits respectively, and for the election of Judges
of the Courts of Probate, and other inferior courts,
(not including Chancellors,) by the qualified elec-
tors of the counties, cities, or districts, for which
such courts may be respectively established ; the
first Monday in November in any year shall be the
day for any election of such judges by the people,
or such otherday not to be within a less period than
two mouths of the general election for Governor,
members of the General Assembly, or members
of Congress, as the General Assembly may by law
prescribe ; but no change to be made in any cir-
cuit, or district, or in the mode or time of elec-
ting, shall aftect the right of any Judge to hold
ofiice during the term prescribed by the Consti-
tution, except at the first elections thereof, to be
made by the people, after the ratification of these
amendments or either of them, which elections
shall then, all be had on the same day throughout
the State, and the terms of the Judges then to be
elected, shall commence on that -day ; vacancies
in the office of Judge, shall be filled by the Gov-
ernor, and the persons appointed thereto by him,
shall hold until the next first Monday in Novem-
ber, or other election day of Judges, and until the
election and qualification of their successors re-
spectively ; and the General Assembly have pow- '
er to annex to the offices of any of the Judges of
the inferior courts the duties of clerks of such
courts respectively.

Sec. 12. The Judges of the several courts of

this State, shall hold their offices for the term of

^^x years ; and for wilful neglect of duty, or other



rea^^onablo cause, which sliall not be sufficient
ground for imi:)eacl)ment, tlio Governor shall re-
move any of them on the address of two-thirds oF .,••!
each house of the General Assembly ; Provided^. ^"^
however, that the cause or causes for which such
Trial of removal shall be required, shall be stated at length
Judges j^ g^^j^ address, and entered on the journals of
each house; And 2'>rovided, further, That the cause
or causes shall be notified to the Judge so intend-
ed to be removed, and he shall be admitted to a
hearing in his own defense, before any vote for .' ^
guch address shall pass ; and in all such cases the "
vote shall be taken by yeas and nays, and entered
on the journal of each house, respectively ; Aiid
])rorkled, also. That the Judges now in office may
hold their offices until the session of the General
Assembly, which shall be held in the year one
thousand eight hundred and thirty-three, and un-
til their successors shall be elected and qualified,
unless removed by address or impeachment.

Age (lisqual-

Sec. 13. No person Avho shall have arrived at
"*«• the age of seventy years shall be appointed to, or

continue in, the office of Judge in this State.

Clerks of ^i^<^- 14- Clerks of the Circuit and Inferior
S^i ^''^ Courts in this State, shall be elected by the qual-
ified electors in each county, for the term of four
years, and may be removed from office for such

Turin of eer- i • i i mi

vice. causes and in such manner as may be prescribed

by law ; and should a vacancy occur, subsequent

yacancies, to au clectiou, it shall be filled by the Jud^e or

Iiuw filled. ' ^ t/ o

Judges of the court in which such vacancy exists;
and the person so appointed shall hold his office
until the next general election ; Provided, howev-
er, that after the year one thousand eight hundred
and twenty-six, the General Assembly may pre-


scribe a different mode of appointment, but shall
not make such appointment.

Sec. 15. The Judges of the Supreme Court conserva-
shall, by virtue of their ofiices, be conservators of peace,
the peace throughout the State ; as also the
Judges of the Circuit Courts in their respective
districts, and Judges of the inferior courts in their
respective counties.

Sec. 16. The style of all process shall be "Theg^y,g^fp5o.
State of Alabama," and all prosecutions shall be"^*-
carried on in the name, and by the authority of
the State of Alabama, and shall conclude, "against
the peace and dignity of the same."

Sec. 17. There shall be an Attorney General Attorney
for the State, and as many solicitors as the Gen- solicitors,
eral Assembly may deem necessary, to be elected
.by a joint vote thereof, who shall hold their oilices vife™and^""
.€or the term of four years, and shall receive for tfon.^^"^*"
their services a compensation, which shall not be
diminished durins: their continuance in office.


Sec. 1. The House of Representatives shall who to im-
have the sole power of impeaching.

Sec. 2. All impeachments shall be tried by how tried,
the Senate; when sitting for that purpose, the^^^^j.^^^
Senators shall be on oath or affirmation; and no ^*^''-
person shall be convicted without the concurrence nowconvic-

■•■ ted.

of two-thirds of the members present.
Sec. 3. The Governor and all civil officers shall



>ika>ic l>e liable to impcaeliment for any misdemeanor in
'*" oHico ; but judgment in such cases shall not ex-

To wiiBi ex-

tend further than removal from office, and to dis-
• [ualification to hold any office of honor, trust or
profit under the State ; hut the party convicted
shall, nevertheless?, bo liable and suVjectto indict-
ment, trial, and jtunishment, according to law.



Sec. 1, The members of the General Assem-
bly, and all officers, executive and judicial, before
they enter on the execution of their respective of-
fices, shall take the following oath or affirmation,
to wit: "I do solemnly swear [or affirm, as the
case may be] that I will support the Constitution
of the State of Alabama so long as I continue a
citizen thereof, and that I will faithfully discharge,
to the best of my abilities, the duties of
according to law, so help me God ! "

Oath of of-


Trcas'.ii de

JIow con-

Sec. 2. Treason against tlie ►Siwie shall con-
sist only in levying war against it, or in adhering
to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. J^o
person shall be convicted of treason, unless on
the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt
act, or his own confession in open court.



Sec. 3. The General Assembly shall have
power to pass such penal laws to suppress the evil
practice of duelling, extending to disqualification
from office, or the tenure thereof, as they may
deem expedient.

Sec. 4. Every person shall be disqualified from


holding auy office or place of honor or profit,
under the authority of the State, who shall be
convicted of having aiven or offered any bribe to
procure his election or appointment.

Sec. 5. Laws shall be made to exclude from „, „^
omce, from suffrage, and from serving as jurors, iDgiaws.
those who shall hereafter be convicted of bribery,
perjury, forgery, or other high crimes, or misde-
meanors. The privilege of free suffrage shall bef.l^^^'^
supported by laws regulating elections, and pro-
hibiting,' under adequate penalties, all undue in-
fluence thereon from power, bribery, tumult, or
improper conduct.

Sec. 6. In all elections by the General Assem- Elections by

111 1 r>ii • -I General A«-

bj}", the members thereof shall vote viva voce, andscmbiy.
the votes shall be entered on the journals.

Sec. 7. Ko money shall be drawn from the Pnbiic mon-
treasury, but in consequence of an appropriation
made by law ; and a rescular statement and ac- treasurer to

PI . , T nil ^"^^ report.

count of the receipts and expenditures of all
public moneys shall be published annually.

Sec. 8. All lands liable to taxation in this Lands


State, shall be taxed in proportion to their value.
Sec. 9. The General Assembly shall direct, by state may bo

1 • 1 1 • 1 • sued.

law, in AVhat manner, ann in what courts, suits
may be brought against the State.

Sec. 10. It shall be the duty of the General i-
Assembly to regulate, by law, the cases in which f-i . .
deductions shall be made from the salaries of pub-
lic officers, for neglect of duty in their official
capacities, and the amount of such deduction.


r>Ki , ii. Temporary absence iroiii ims ciate,
shall not cause a forfeiture of a rcaidouce once

V J .^cavioce- ^^^' ^^' ■^'^ member or delegate to any Con-
"'" grese of other States or powers, nor persons hold-

ing any ofHcc of profit or trust under any foreign
power, shall hold or exercise any office of profit
nn«ler this State : Provided, that this section does
not apply to any deputy, delegate or commis-
sioner elected by this convention.

ohrnrc! Sec 13. Divorces from the bonds of Matri-

mony shall not be granted, but in cases provided
for bylaw by suit in chancery. But decrees for
divorce shall be final, unless appealed from within
three months from the date of the enrollment

tjbei*. how ^^^* •^■^' ^^ prosecutions for the puldishing of
"'■■' pa[»ers investigating the official conduct of orticers,

or men in public capacity, or when the matter
published is proper for public information, the
truth thereof may be given in evidence; and in
all indictments for libels, the jury shall liave the
right to determine the law and the facts under the
direction of the courts.

Eicotion ro. Seo If). Rctums of all elections for ofticepd - »»,
who are to be commissioned by the Governor,
and for members of the General Assembly, sliall
be made to the Secretary of State.

Sec, 10. The (lenenii Assembly may, b}^ a
vote of two-thirds of both branches thereof, ar-
range and designate boundaries for the several
counties of this State, whicli shall not bo aUered, ^


except by a lik^otfe of the General Assembly.
But no new county shall be hereafter formed of
less extent than nine hundred square miles, nor

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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 7 of 11)