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any person, as such land and the buildings and improvements thereon
shall be estimated according to such mode as the United States in
Congress assembled, shall from time to time direct and appoint.

The taxes for paying that proportion shall be laid and levied by the
authority and direction of the Legislatures of the several States within
the time agreed upon by the United States in Congress assembled.

ARTICLE IX. The United States in Congress assembled, shall have the sole
and exclusive right and power of determining on peace and war, except
in the cases mentioned in the sixth article - of sending and receiving
ambassadors - entering into treaties and alliances, provided that no
treaty of commerce shall be made whereby the legislative power of the
respective States shall be restrained from imposing such imposts and
duties on foreigners, as their own people are subjected to, or from
prohibiting the exportation or importation of any species of goods or
commodities whatsoever - of establishing rules for deciding in all cases,
what captures on land or water shall be legal, and in what manner prizes
taken by land or naval forces in the service of the United States shall
be divided or appropriated - of granting letters of marque and reprisal
in times of peace - appointing courts for the trial of piracies and
felonies committed on the high seas and establishing courts for
receiving and determining finally appeals in all cases of captures,
provided that no member of Congress shall be appointed a judge of any of
the said courts.

The United States in Congress assembled shall also be the last resort on
appeal in all disputes and differences now subsisting or that hereafter
may arise between two or more States concerning boundary, jurisdiction
or any other cause whatever; which authority shall always be exercised
in the manner following. Whenever the legislative or executive authority
or lawful agent of any State in controversy with another shall present
a petition to Congress, stating the matter in question and praying for
a hearing, notice thereof shall be given by order of Congress to the
legislative or executive authority of the other State in controversy,
and a day assigned for the appearance of the parties by their lawful
agents, who shall then be directed to appoint by joint consent,
commissioners or judges to constitute a court for hearing and
determining the matter in question: but if they cannot agree, Congress
shall name three persons out of each of the United States, and from the
list of such persons each party shall alternately strike out one, the
petitioners beginning, until the number shall be reduced to thirteen;
and from that number not less than seven, nor more than nine names as
Congress shall direct, shall in the presence of Congress be drawn out by
lot, and the persons whose names shall be so drawn or any five of them,
shall be commissioners or judges, to hear and finally determine the
controversy, so always as a major part of the judges who shall hear
the cause shall agree in the determination: and if either party shall
neglect to attend at the day appointed, without showing reasons, which
Congress shall judge sufficient, or being present shall refuse to
strike, the Congress shall proceed to nominate three persons out of
each State, and the Secretary of Congress shall strike in behalf of such
party absent or refusing; and the judgment and sentence of the court
to be appointed, in the manner before prescribed, shall be final and
conclusive; and if any of the parties shall refuse to submit to the
authority of such court, or to appear or defend their claim or cause,
the court shall nevertheless proceed to pronounce sentence, or judgment,
which shall in like manner be final and decisive, the judgment or
sentence and other proceedings being in either case transmitted to
Congress, and lodged among the acts of Congress for the security of the
parties concerned: provided that every commissioner, before he sits in
judgment, shall take an oath to be administered by one of the judges
of the supreme or superior court of the State where the cause shall be
tried, "well and truly to hear and determine the matter in question,
according to the best of his judgment, without favour, affection or hope
of reward:" provided also that no State shall be deprived of territory
for the benefit of the United States.

All controversies concerning the private right of soil claimed under
different grants of two or more States, whose jurisdiction as they
may respect such lands, and the States which passed such grants are
adjusted, the said grants or either of them being at the same
time claimed to have originated antecedent to such settlement of
jurisdiction, shall on the petition of either party to the Congress of
the United States, be finally determined as near as may be in the
same manner as is before prescribed for deciding disputes respecting
territorial jurisdiction between different States.

The United States in Congress assembled shall also have the sole and
exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of
coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the respective
States. - fixing the standard of weights and measures throughout the
United States. - regulating the trade and managing all affairs with the
Indians, not members of any of the States, provided that the
legislative right of any State within its own limits be not infringed
or violated - establishing and regulating post-offices from one State to
another, throughout all the United States, and exacting such postage
on the papers passing thro' the same as may be requisite to defray the
expenses of the said office - appointing all officers of the land
forces, in the service of the United States, excepting regimental
officers - appointing all the officers of the naval forces, and
commissioning all officers whatever in the service of the United
States - making rules for the government and regulation of the said land
and naval forces, and directing their operations.

The United States in Congress assembled shall have authority to appoint
a committee, to sit in the recess of Congress, to be denominated "a
Committee of the States," and to consist of one delegate from each
State; and to appoint such other committees and civil officers as may
be necessary for managing the general affairs of the United States under
their direction - to appoint one of their number to preside, provided
that no person be allowed to serve in the office of president more than
one year in any term of three years; to ascertain the necessary sums
of money to be raised for the service of the United States, and to
appropriate and apply the same for defraying the public expenses - to
borrow money, or emit bills on the credit of the United States,
transmitting every half year to the respective States an account of the
sums of money so borrowed or emitted, - to build and equip a navy - to
agree upon the number of land forces, and to make requisitions from each
State for its quota, in proportion to the number of white inhabitants
in such State; which requisition shall be binding, and thereupon the
Legislature of each State shall appoint the regimental officers, raise
the men and cloath, arm and equip them in a soldier like manner, at
the expense of the United States; and the officers and men so cloathed,
armed and equipped shall march to the place appointed, and within the
time agreed on by the United States in Congress assembled: but if
the United States in Congress assembled shall, on consideration of
circumstances judge proper that any State should not raise men, or
should raise a smaller number than its quota, and that any other State
should raise a greater number of men than the quota thereof, such extra
number shall be raised, officered, cloathed, armed and equipped in the
same manner as the quota of such State, unless the legislature of such
State shall judge that such extra number cannot be safely spared out of
the same, in which case they shall raise officer, cloath, arm and equip
as many of such extra number as they judge can be safely spared. And
the officers and men so cloathed, armed and equipped, shall march to the
place appointed, and within the time agreed on by the United States in
Congress assembled.

The United States in Congress assembled shall never engage in a war, nor
grant letters of marque and reprisal in time of peace, nor enter into
any treaties or alliances, nor coin money, nor regulate the value
thereof, nor ascertain the sums and expenses necessary for the defence
and welfare of the United States, or any of them, nor emit bills, nor
borrow money on the credit of the United States, nor appropriate money,
nor agree upon the number of vessels of war, to be built or purchased,
or the number of land or sea forces to be raised, nor appoint a
commander in chief of the army or navy, unless nine States assent to
the same: nor shall a question on any other point, except for adjourning
from day to day be determined, unless by the votes of a majority of the
United States in Congress assembled.

The Congress of the United States shall have power to adjourn to any
time within the year, and to any place within the United States, so that
no period of adjournment be for a longer duration than the space of
six months, and shall publish the journal of their proceedings monthly,
except such parts thereof relating to treaties, alliances or military
operations, as in their judgment require secresy; and the yeas and nays
of the delegates of each State on any question shall be entered on the
journal, when it is desired by any delegate; and the delegates of a
State, or any of them, at his or their request shall be furnished with a
transcript of the said journal, except such parts as are above excepted,
to lay before the Legislatures of the several States.

ARTICLE X. The committee of the States, or any nine of them, shall be
authorized to execute, in the recess of Congress, such of the powers of
Congress as the United States in Congress assembled, by the consent of
nine States, shall from time to time think expedient to vest them with;
provided that no power be delegated to the said committee, for the
exercise of which, by the articles of confederation, the voice of nine
States in the Congress of the United States assembled is requisite.

ARTICLE XI. Canada acceding to this confederation, and joining in the
measures of the United States, shall be admitted into, and entitled to
all the advantages of this Union: but no other colony shall be admitted
into the same, unless such admission be agreed to by nine States.

ARTICLE XII. All bills of credit emitted, monies borrowed and debts
contracted by, or under the authority of Congress, before the assembling
of the United States, in pursuance of the present confederation, shall
be deemed and considered as a charge against the United States, for
payment and satisfaction whereof the said United States, and the public
faith are hereby solemnly pledged.

ARTICLE XIII. Every State shall abide by the determinations of the
United States in Congress assembled, on all questions which by
this confederation are submitted to them. And the articles of this
confederation shall be inviolably observed by every State, and the Union
shall be perpetual; nor shall any alteration at any time hereafter be
made in any of them; unless such alteration be agreed to in a Congress
of the United States, and be afterwards confirmed by the Legislatures of
every State.

And whereas it has pleased the Great Governor of the world to incline
the hearts of the Legislatures we respectively represent in Congress,
to approve of, and to authorize us to ratify the said articles of
confederation and perpetual union. Know ye that we the undersigned
delegates, by virtue of the power and authority to us given for
that purpose, do by these presents, in the name and in behalf of our
respective constituents, fully and entirely ratify and confirm each and
every of the said articles of confederation and perpetual union, and all
and singular the matters and things therein contained: and we do further
solemnly plight and engage the faith of our respective constituents,
that they shall abide by the determinations of the United States in
Congress assembled, on all questions, which by the said confederation
are submitted to them. And that the articles thereof shall be inviolably
observed by the States we re[s]pectively represent, and that the Union
shall be perpetual.

In witness whereof we have hereunto set our hands in Congress. Done at
Philadelphia in the State of Pennsylvania the ninth day of July in the
year of our Lord one thousand s even hundred and seventy-eight, and in
the third year of the independence of America.*


* From the circumstances of delegates from the same State having
signed the Articles of Confederation at different times, as appears by
the dates, it is probable they affixed their names as they happened
to be present in Congress, after they had been authorized by their
constituents.


On the part & behalf of the State of New Hampshire. JOSIAH BARTLETT,
JOHN WENTWORTH, JUNR., August 8th, 1778.

On the part and behalf of the State of Massachusetts Bay. JOHN HANCOCK,
SAMUEL ADAMS, ELDBRIDGE GERRY, FRANCIS DANA, JAMES LOVELL, SAMUEL
HOLTEN.

On the part and behalf of the State of Rhode Island and Providence
Plantations. WILLIAMS ELLERY, HENRY MARCHANT, JOHN COLLINS.

On the part and behalf of the State of Connecticut. ROGER SHERMAN,
SAMUEL HUNTINGTON, OLIVER WOLCOTT, TITUS HOSMER, ANDREW ADAMS.

On the part and behalf of the State of New York. JAS. DUANE, FRA. LEWIS,
Wm. DUER, GOUV. MORRIS.

On the part and in behalf of the State of New Jersey, Novr. 26, 1778.
JNO. WITHERSPOON, NATHL. SCUDDER.

On the part and behalf of the State of Pennsylvania. ROBT. MORRIS,
DANIEL ROBERDEAU, JONA. BAYARD SMITH, WILLIAM CLINGAN, JOSEPH REED, 22d
July, 1778.

On the part & behalf of the State of Delaware. THO. M'KEAN, Feby. 12,
1779. JOHN DICKINSON, May 5, 1779. NICHOLAS VAN DYKE.

On the part and behalf of the State of Maryland. JOHN HANSON, March 1,
1781. DANIEL CARROLL, Mar. 1, 1781.

On the part and behalf of the State of Virginia. RICHARD HENRY LEE, JNO.
HARVIE, JOHN BANISTER, THOMAS ADAMS, FRANCIS LIGHTFOOT LEE.

On the part and behalf of the State of No. Carolina. JOHN PENN, July
21st, 1778. CORNS. HARNETT, JNO. WILLIAMS.

On the part & behalf of the State of South Carolina. HENRY LAURENS,
WILLIAM HENRY DRAYTON, JNO. MATHEWS, RICHD. HUTSON, THOS. HEYWARD, JUNR.

On the part & behalf of the State of Georgia. JNO. WALTON, 24th July,
EDWD. TELFAIR, EDWD. LANGWORTHY. 1778.

THE NORTHWEST TERRITORIAL GOVERNMENT - 1787.

THE CONFEDERATE CONGRESS, JULY 13, 1787.

An Ordinance for the government of the territory of the United States
northwest of the river Ohio.

SECTION 1. Be it ordained by the United States in Congress assembled,
That the said territory, for the purpose of temporary government, be one
district, subject, however, to be divided into two districts, as future
circumstances may, in the opinion of Congress, make it expedient.

SEC. 2. Be it ordained by the authority aforesaid, That the estates both
of resident and non-resident proprietors in the said territory, dying
intestate, shall descend to, and be distributed among their children
and the descendants of a deceased child in equal parts, the descendants
of a deceased child or grandchild to take the share of their deceased
parent in equal parts among them; and where there shall be no children
or descendants, then in equal parts to the next of kin, in equal degree;
and among collaterals, the children of a deceased brother or sister
of the intestate shall have, in equal parts among them, their deceased
parent's share; and there shall, in no case, be a distinction between
kindred of the whole and half blood; saving in all cases to the widow of
the intestate, her third part of the real estate for life, and one-third
part of the personal estate; and this law relative to descents and
dower, shall remain in full force until altered by the legislature of
the district. And until the governor and judges shall adopt laws as
hereinafter mentioned, estates in the said territory may be devised or
bequeathed by wills in writing, signed and sealed by him or her in whom
the estate may be, (being of full age,) and attested by three witnesses;
and real estates may be conveyed by lease and release, or bargain and
sale, signed, sealed, and delivered by the person, being of full age,
in whom the estate may be, and attested by two witnesses, provided
such wills be duly proved, and such conveyances be acknowledged, or the
execution thereof duly proved, and be recorded within one year after
proper magistrates, courts, and registers, shall be appointed for that
purpose; and personal property may be transferred by delivery, saving,
however, to the French and Canadian inhabitants, and other settlers of
the Kaskaskias, Saint Vincents, and the neighboring villages, who have
heretofore professed themselves citizens of Virginia, their laws and
customs now being in force among them, relative to the descent and
conveyance of property.

SEC. 3. Be it ordained by the authority aforesaid, That there shall be
appointed, from time to time, by Congress, a governor, whose commission
shall continue in force for the term of three years, unless sooner
revoked by Congress; he shall reside in the district, and have a
freehold estate therein, in one thousand acres of land, while in the
exercise of his office.

SEC. 4. There shall be appointed from time to time, by Congress, a
secretary, whose commission shall continue in force for four years,
unless sooner revoked; he shall reside in the district, and have a
freehold estate therein, in five hundred acres of land, while in the
exercise of his office. It shall be his duty to keep and preserve the
acts and laws passed by the legislature, and the public records of
the district, and the proceedings of the governor in his executive
department, and transmit authentic copies of such acts and proceedings
every six months to the Secretary of Congress. There shall also be
appointed a court, to consist of three judges, any two of whom to form
a court, who shall have a common-law jurisdiction, and reside in the
district, and have each therein a freehold estate, in five hundred acres
of land, while in the exercise of their offices; and their commissions
shall continue in force during good behavior.

SEC. 5. The governor and judges, or a majority of them, shall adopt and
publish in the distric[t] such laws of the original States, criminal and
civil, as may be necessary, and best suited to the circumstances of
the district, and report them to Congress from time to time, which laws
shall be in force in the district until the organization of the general
assembly therein, unless disapproved of by Congress; but afterwards the
legislature shall have authority to alter them as they shall think fit.

SEC. 6. The governor, for the time being, shall be commander-in-chief of
the militia, appoint and commission all officers in the same below the
rank of general officers; all general officers shall be appointed and
commissioned by Congress.

SEC. 7. Previous to the organization of the general assembly the
governor shall appoint such magistrates, and other civil officers, in
each county or township, as he shall find necessary for the preservation
of the peace and good order in the same. After the general assembly
shall be organized the powers and duties of magistrates and other civil
officers shall be regulated and defined by the said assembly; but all
magistrates and other civil officers, not herein otherwise directed,
shall, during the continuance of this temporary government, be appointed
by the governor.

SEC. 8. For the prevention of crimes and injuries, the laws to be
adopted or made shall have force in all parts of the district, and for
the execution of process, criminal and civil, the governor shall make
proper divisions thereof; and he shall proceed, from time to time, as
circumstances may require, to lay out the parts of the district in
which the Indian titles shall have been extinguished, into counties and
townships, subject, however, to such alterations as may thereafter be
made by the legislature.

SEC. 9. So soon as there shall be five thousand free male inhabitants,
of full age, in the district, upon giving proof thereof to the
governor, they shall receive authority, with time and place, to elect
representatives from their counties or townships, to represent them in
the general assembly: Provided, That for every five hundred free male
inhabitants there shall be one representative, and so on, progressively,
with the number of free male inhabitants, shall the right of
representation increase, until the number of representatives shall
amount to twenty-five; after which the number and proportion of
representatives shall be regulated by the legislature: Provided, That
no person be eligible or qualified to act as a representative, unless he
shall have been a citizen of one of the United States three years, and
be a resident in the district, or unless he shall have resided in the
district three years; and, in either case, shall likewise hold in his
own right, in fee-simple, two hundred acres of land within the same:
Provided also, That a freehold in fifty acres of land in the district,
having been a citizen of one of the States, and being resident in the
district, or the like freehold and two years' residence in the district,
shall be necessary to qualify a man as an elector of a representative.

SEC. 10. The representatives thus elected shall serve for the term of
two years; and in case of the death of a representative, or removal from
office, the governor shall issue a writ to the county or township, for
which he was a member, to elect another in his stead, to serve for the
residue of the term.

SEC. 11. The general assembly, or legislature, shall consist of the
governor, legislative council, and a house of representatives. The
legislative council shall consist of five members, to continue in office
five years, unless sooner removed by Congress; any three of whom to be a
quorum; and the members of the council shall be nominated and appointed
in the following manner, to wit: As soon as representatives shall be
elected the governor shall appoint a time and place for them to meet
together, and when met they shall nominate ten persons, resident in
the district, and each possessed of a freehold in five hundred acres of
land, and return their names to Congress, five of whom Congress shall
appoint and commission to serve as aforesaid; and whenever a vacancy
shall happen in the council, by death or removal from office, the house
of representatives shall nominate two persons, qualified as aforesaid,
for each vacancy, and return their names to Congress, one of whom
Congress shall appoint and commission for the residue of the term; and
every five years, four months at least before the expiration of the time
of service of the members of the council, the said house shall nominate
ten persons, qualified as aforesaid, and return their names to Congress,
five of whom Congress shall appoint and commission to serve as members
of the council five years, unless sooner removed. And the governor,
legislative council, and house of representatives shall have authority
to make laws in all cases for the good government of the district, not
repugnant to the principles and articles in this ordinance established
and declared. And all bills, having passed by a majority in the house,
and by a majority in the council, shall be referred to the governor for
his assent; but no bill, or legislative act whatever, shall be of any
force without his assent. The governor shall have power to convene,
prorogue, and dissolve the general assembly when, in his opinion, it
shall be expedient.

SEC. 12. The governor, judges, legislative council, secretary, and such
other officers as Congress shall appoint in the district, shall take an
oath or affirmation of fidelity, and of office; the governor before the
President of Congress, and all other officers before the governor. As
soon as a legislature shall be formed in the district, the council and
house assembled, in one room, shall have authority, by joint ballot, to
elect a delegate to Congress, who shall have a seat in Congress, with a
right of debating, but not of voting, during this temporary government.

SEC. 13. And for extending the fundamental principles of civil and


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Online LibraryMax FarrandThe Fathers of the Constitution; a chronicle of the establishment of the Union → online text (page 10 of 13)