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rightful authority to and the independence of the Executive and Judiciary, and the subordination of the military to the civil power.
7. Equal rights and protection for naturalized and native-born citizens at home and abroad, and the assertion of American nationality which shall command the respect of foreign powers and furnish an example and encouragement to people struggling for national integrity and constitutional liberty.
8. That the thanks of a grateful people are ever due to the soldiers and sailors who perilled their lives in defence of the Republic, and that their claims upon the Government and the people shall be held sacred
9. That the nation is under deep and lasting obligation to President Andrew Johnson, who, deserted by a party which proved faithless to the principles and pledges upon which it came into power, has respected his oath to maintain and defend the Constitution, and who will be honored in history as one of the most determined defenders of American liberty; and that Chief-Justice Chase, who, in the trial instituted to depose the Executive as an obstacle to partisan and revolutionary purposes, proved faithful to his high trusts, and restored the Judiciary to its ancient renown, is entitled to the gratitude not only of the Democracy of this State and nation, but of all friends of civil government.
In relation to State affairs the following was adopted:
Resolved, That all registration and excise laws should be uniform in their operation throughout the State; and that the execution of excise laws and the collection of fees under them should be made through
the local authorities in the several counties.
The election took place on the first Tuesday of November, and resulted in favor of the Democratic candidates both for State officers and Presidential electors. The whole vote for Governor was 850,656, of which Hoffman received 439,301 and Griswold 411,355, giving the former a majority of 27,946. The entire vote cast for Presidential electors was 849,766, of which 429,883 were for electors pledged to vote for Seymour, and 419,883 were in favor of the election of Grant. Seymour's majority in the State was just 10,000. Thirtyone members of Congress were chosen, of whom thirteen are Democrats, and eighteen Republicans. The Legislature of 1869 has 17 Republicans, and 15 Democrats in the Senate, and 76 Republicans and 52 Democrats in the Assembly. In the City of New York there were 173,683 voters registered, 165,894 votes were cast for Governor, of which 112,522, or a majority of 69,150 were given for Mr. Hoffman. The full vote for Mayor in December was 95,944, of which A. Oakey Hall received 75,109, or a majority of 54,274 over Fred. A. Conkling, the Republican candidate.
The Court of Appeals pronounced a decision against the legality of political test oaths at the November term. The case arose under the act of 1867, providing for a convention to revise and amend the Constitution of the State, which excluded from the privilege of voting all persons who refused to take a prescribed oath. Judge Miller held the opinion that this was inconsistent with the clause of the Federal Constitution which declares that "no State shall pass any bill of attainder, ex post
facto law, or law impairing the obligation of contracts." His language on this point is:
This act declares that no person shall vote at the election for delegates to said convention who will not, if duly challenged, take and subscribe an oath that he has not done certain acts mentioned therein,
and inflicts the penalty of political disfranchisement, without any preliminary examination or trial, for a refusal to take said oath. Thus the citizen is de prived, upon declining, of a right guaranteed by the Constitution and the laws, and one of the most inestimable privileges of a free government. There can be no doubt, I think, that to deprive a citizen of the privilege of exercising the elective franchise for any conduct which he has previously been guilty of, is to inflict a punishment for the act done. It imposes upon him a severe penalty, one which by the laws of the State is a part of the punishment inflicted after conviction for felony. It arbitrarily and summarily, and without any of the forms of law, punishes for in offence created by the law itself.
When the act in question was passed by the Legis lature, there was no law in this State which con demned or characterized the conduct which is p ished in this act, by depriving the citizen of the rig of suffrage. This law created a new crime, and makes an offence which did not previously exist. It ishes for an act which was not a crime when cont ted. Besides, the statute in question, in violation of the rules of the common law, pronounces judgme of condemnation without evidence, without any of portunity to defend against the charge, and without any trial. It makes the party the accuser of him. and his refusal to acquit himself, his own conde tion. It punishes for an offence, before an accusation is made and a trial had judicially, according to th constitution and the laws of the land. It ens him, in a direct violation of the Constitution of the United States, to be a witness against himself. Hs duce his conviction, and seals his guilt. The refusal to testify that he is innocent operates to 1 of the fifth amendment was to prevent the party fr being called upon as a witness of his own guilt. I compel him to testify would violate this provis and indirectly to make his refusal to testify a cause an evasion of the provision cited." for punishment effects the same purpose. It is c
The act prescribing this oath is also declared to be contrary to the provisions of the const tution of the State. The Judge says:
I am also of the opinion that the statute in c tion violates the constitution of the State of Ner York.
The first section of the second article of the
stitution prescribes the qualifications of electors, who shall be entitled to vote for all officers that now it hereafter may be elected by the people."
The second section of the nineteenth article p vides for the submission of the question, whether a convention shall be called, "to the electors que to vote for members of the Legislature, and in cese a majority of the electors so qualified voting at sch election shall decide in favor of such convertin such a purpose, the Legislature shall provide for the election of delegates to such convention." T clause does not confer upon the Legislature sy power to create disabilities not existing at the tim under the Constitution, or to restrict the right suffrage which the Constitution has established. B would be extraordinary if the Legislature had the right to determine who were entitled to the priv of voting, and thus, in the exercise of an unli discretion, be able to disfranchise any class of zens, when the right is already clearly established of the constitution of this State, which declares The statute also violates section one of article "no member of this State shall be disfranchised deprived of any of the rights or privileges secured
any citizens thereof, unless by the law of the land or the judgment of his peers." "The law of the land" does not mean a statute passed for the purpose of working the wrong, but the law which existed at the time when the alleged offence was perpetrated. The provision was intended to restrict the power of the Legislature (Wynehammer agt. The People, 13 N. Y., 393, 394, and 416, and cases cited). The section in question pronounces a judgment and disfranchises the elector without judge or jury, or any of the forms required by the ordinary course of legal proceedings.
It also violates section six of article one, which declares that no person shall be held to answer for a crime, except on presentment of a grand jury; and the second section of the same article, which secures the right of trial by jury in all cases in which it has heretofore been held inviolate.
At the beginning of the fiscal year, October 1,1867, there was a deficiency in the revenues of. the State of $2,860,586.38. The payments made during the year amounted to $10,208,198.46, thus giving $13,068,784.84 to be provided for by taxation, while the receipts from that source were $10,112,331.30, leaving a deficiency of $2,956,453.54. This was afterward made up by the payment of $4,000,000 due from the city of New York. The receipts of the year on account of all the funds of the State, with the exception of the canal and free-school funds, amounted to $16,003,178.53, and the payments on the same account were upward of $15,000,000, which left a balance of $748,521.41. The State tax levied in 1868 was 5 mills on each dollar of taxable property, and was distributed as follows: For schools, 1 mills; for general purposes, 11 mills; for canals, 1 mill; for bounty debt, 2 mills; and for the Whitehall and Plattsburgh work, mill; all of which yielded a total revenue of $10,243,317.01.
The State debt, on the 30th of September, 1867, was $48,367,682.22, classified as follows:
General Fund Debt.
$5,642,622 22 130,000 00 15,733,060 00 26,862,000 00
On the 30th of September, 1868, the total funded debt was reduced to $44,968,786.40, classified as follows:
$4,707,826 40 68,000 00
For teachers' wages. For libraries..
For colored schools.
For school-houses, sites, repairs, furniture,
Number of teachers employed in
Number of children of school age.
Number of children attending school some portion of the year...
schools for 28 weeks or more..
Number of school-houses..
which was called to frame a new constitution NORTH CAROLINA. The convention,
for the State of North Carolina under the reconstruction acts of Congress, met at Raleigh on the 14th of February, and proceeded to the work appointed for it without delay. Some little sensitiveness was displayed at first in a resolution, adopted on the second day of its session, that "no reporter for any newspaper be allowed upon this floor, who treats the convention or any of its members with disrespect, but that they shall, in case of offence in this respect, be excluded from the floor of the hall, and from the galleries." The "disrespect "which called forth this rule consisted in designating the colored members by the word "negro," placed after their names in the reports of the proceedings. The only important discussions which arose during the sittings of the convention were connected with the subject of equal rights for whites and blacks. In the constitution, as framed and adopted, no distinction of races is in any way recognized, though attempts were made, by the members opposed to the enfranchisement of negroes, to introduce provisions looking to various discriminations to be made by future Legislatures. The principal debate on this topic occurred on the consideration of the article regulating the suffrage, and on that making provision for the organization and management of public schools. One member made an elaborate speech to show "the physical and mental inferiority of the African race, which rendered it unfit to live on a footing of social and political equality with the whites."
In the Bill of Rights are these declarations:
SECTION 4. That this State shall ever remain a member of the American Union, that the people thereof are part of the American nation; that there is no right on the part of this State to secede, and that all attempts, from whatever source, or upon whatever pretext, to dissolve said Union, or to sever said nation, ought to be resisted with the whole power of the State.
SEC. 5. That every citizen of this State owes paramount allegiance to the Constitution and Government of the United States, and that no law or ordinance of the State, in contravention or subversion thereof, can have any binding force.
SEO. 6. To maintain the honor and good faith of the State untarnished, the public debt, regularly contracted before and since the rebellion, shall be regarded as inviolable and never be questioned; but the State shall never assume or pay, or authorize the collection of, any debt or obligation, expressed or implied, incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave.
SEC. 33. Slavery and involuntary servitude, other wise than for crime whereof the parties shall have been duly convicted, shall be, and are hereby, forever prohibited within this State."
The elections for members of the General Assembly are hereafter to be held on the first Thursday in August of alternate years, commencing in 1870, and that body is to meet on the third Monday in November. There are to be 50 Senators and 120 Representatives, each holding office for two years. The term of office of all the executive officers of the Govern
ment is four years.
The only oath, prescribed for every person on his induction into office, is the ordinary asseveration that he will support the Constitution and laws of the United States and of the State of North Carolina, and that he will perform, to the best of his ability, the duties which he assumes in accepting the official position.
The article on the judiciary abolishes the distinction between actions at law and suits in equity, and provides for the establishment of a supreme court, superior courts, courts of justices of the peace, and special courts. The Supreme Court consists of a chief-justice with four associates, and exercises in general matters only an appellate jurisdiction. The judges of both the Supreme and Superior Courts are to be elected by the suffrages of the qualified voters of the State, and hold their positions for a term of eight years.
The elective franchise is conferred upon every male person, twenty-one years of age and upward, native in the country or legally nataralized, who shall have resided in the State twelve months next preceding the election and thirty days in the county in which he of fers to vote. No exception to this rule is made whatever, but "no person shall be allowed to vote without registration, or to register without first taking an oath or affirmation to sup port and maintain the Constitution and laws of the United States, and the constitution and laws of North Carolina, not inconsistent therewith."
The only persons disqualified from holding office are: "First, all persons who shall dey the being of Almighty God. Second, all per sons who shall have been convicted of treason, perjury, or of any other infamous crime, since becoming citizens of the United States, or of corruption or malpractice in office, unless such persons shall have been legally restored to the rights of citizenship."
On the subject of the right of suffrage and of eligibility to office, two minority reports were submitted by different members of the committee which had those subjects under consideration. One of these was in favor of introducing restrictions which would excude a large portion of the blacks who had "recent ly emerged from slavery, and were unfitted, by previous education and habits of thought and self-reliance, for the intelligent discharge of the duties and responsibilities which would devolve upon them;" and the other proposed such limitations as would deprive those, who took a prominent part in the cause of the South in the late civil war, from participating in the rights of citizenship. Neither of these reports had any influence in shaping the pro visions of the organic law of the State, and to reference is to be found in that instrument either to a distinction of races or to the loyalty or disloyalty of any class of citizens.
On the subject of education, ample powers are given to the Legislature to establish and support an effective school system, and pro
vision is made for the management and main- vote of the people was to be taken on the . tenance of the State University, It is pro- ratification of the constitution, appointed the vided that the public schools shall be open, free 21st, 22d and 23d of April for that purpose, of charge, to all children of the State between and further provided that at the same election the age of six and twenty-one, and the Gen- Senators and Representatives to the General eral Assembly is empowered to enact that Assembly, and all the State and county offi"every child of sufficient mental and physical cers, as well as Representatives to the Conability shall attend the Public Schools during gress of the United States, should be chosen. the period between the ages of six and A certified copy of this ordinance was foreighteen years, for a term of not less than six- warded to General Canby, commander of the teen months, unless educated by other means.” military district, and on the 23d of March he The advantages of the University are extended, issued an order for holding the election, conas far as practicable, to the youth of the taining complete instructions for revising the State free of expense for tuition.'
registration of qualified voters, and for receivA homestead and dwelling not exceeding ing and returning the votes. Among the inone thousand dollars in value, and personal structions contained in his order, were the property to the amount of five hundred dol- following: lars, are exempted from sale under execution
9th. The sheriff and other peace-officers of each or other legal process for the collection of county are required to be present during the whole any debt. The separate property of women, time that the polls are kept open, and until the elecacquired before or after marriage, is secured to
tion is completed; and will be made responsible
that there shall bé no interference with judges of them free from liability on account of the debts election, or other interruption of good order. If of their husbands.
there should be more than one polling place in any All able-bodied male persons between the county, the sheriff of the county is empowered and ages of twenty-one and forty years, who are
directed to make such assignments of his deputies, citizens of the United States, are made liable to
and other peace-officers, to the other polling-places, duty in the militia, unless averse to bearing of quiet and order; and he is further required to re
as may in his judgment best subserve the purposes arms from religious scruples; and it is made port these arrangements in advance to the commander the duty of the Legislature to provide for the of the military post in which his county situated. efficient employment of this force, to execute charge from employment, or other oppressive means
10th. Violence, or threats of violence, or of disthe law, suppress riots or insurrection, and to
to prevent any person from registering or exercising repel invasion.
his right of voting, is positively prohibited ; and any The following section renders the amend- such attempts will be reported by the registrars, or ment of the constitution quite difficult:
judges of elections, to the post commander, and will
cause the arrest and trial of the offenders by military Section 2. No part of the constitution of this State authority. The exhibition or carrying of deadly shall be altered, unless a bill to alter the same shall weapons in violation of General Orders No. 10, of have been read three times in each House of the 1867, at or in the vicinity of any polling-places durGeneral Assembly, and agreed to by three-fifths of ing the election herein ordered, will be regarded and he whole number of members of each House, respec- treated as an additional offence. ively; nor shall any alteration take place, until the 11th. All bar-rooms, saloons, and other places for bill so agreed to shall have been published six months the sale of liquors by retail, will be closed from six previous to a new election of members of the Gen- o'clock of the evening of the 20th of April, until six ral Assembly. If, after such publication, the altera- o'clock of the morning of the 24th of April, 1868, ion proposed by the preceding General Assembly and during this time the sale of all intoxicating shall be agreed to, in the first session thereafter, by liquors at or near any polling-place is prohibited. Fo-thirds of the whole representation in each House The police officers of cities and towns, and the sherof the General Assembly, after the same shall have iffs and other peace-officers of counties, will be held been read three times on three several days in each responsible for the strict enforcement of this prohibiHlouse, then the said General Assembly shall pre- tion, and will promptly arrest and hold for trial all scribe a mode by which the amendment or amend- persons who may transgress it. pents may be submitted to the qualified voters of 12th. Military interference with elections, “unless he liouse of Representatives throughout the State ; it shall be necessary to repel the armed enemies of and if, upon comparing the votes given in the whole the United States, or to keep the peace at the polls," state
, it shall appear that a majority of the voters is prohibited by the Act of Congress approved FebFoting thereon have approved thereof, then, and ruary 25, 1865, and no soldiers will be allowed to ap10t otherwise, the same shall become a part of the pear at any polling-place, unless as citizens of the
State they are qualified and are registered as voters,
and then only for the purpose of voting; but the The principal objections made to the work commanders of posts will keep their troops well in of the convention, either by its own members hand on the days of election, and will be prepared or in the public prints, were based on its free- to act promptly if the civil authorities are unable to dom from any provisions making distinctions preserve the peace. among citizens on account of race, color, or
The State-officers to be chosen were a govprevious condition. The convention concluded ernor, lieutenant-governor, anditor, treasurer, its labors with an ordinance providing for the superintendent of public works, superintendfirst election, at which the vote was to be ent of public instruction, attorney-general, taken on its ratification, and adjourned on the five justices of the Supreme Court, and one
judge of the Superior Court, in each of twelve The ordinance of the convention, providing judicial districts. for the holding of the election at which the A disposition was shown, on the part of all
17th of March.
classes of people in the State to take part in the political canvass, and exert their influence for or against the new constitution. Delegates of the Conservative or Democratic party met in convention, at the call of their State executive committee, at Raleigh, on the 7th of February, and decided upon a plan of organization for the party throughout the State. The purpose of the convention, as expressed in the preamble to its declaration of principles, was "to consider the present anomalous condition of the State, and of the country, and to consult together upon the grievances which now afflict and threaten them (the Conservatives), and the course of action proper to be adopted in the trying circumstances which surround them." After declaring their "unalterable devotion to the principles of constitutional liberty," and their "fealty to the Government of the United States, as set forth in the Federal Constitution," and averring that they accept in good faith "the legitimate and legal results of the late war," and heartily desired peace and concord with their "sister States, and with the entire United States," they embodied the leading articles of their political faith in the following resolutions:
Resolved, That, regarding the Constitution of the United States as the source of all power in the administration of the Government, and that the powers of the Executive, Legislative and Judicial departments are equal and coordinate, as defined by that instrument, we do respectfully and solemnly protest against the enforcement upon our people of the reconstruction Acts and policy of Congress, as unconstitutional, unwise, and destructive to society, and violative of that great principle of American politics,
that each State shall have the exclusive control of its own internal affairs.
Resolved, That it is the opinion of this convention, that the great and all absorbing issue, now soon to be presented to the people of the State, is negro suffrage and negro equality, if not supremacy, and whether, hereafter, in North Carolina and the South, the white man is to be placed politically, and, as a consequence, socially, upon a footing of equality with the negro, and, in many localities, subject to his government as a superior. That we are utterly opposed to such change in our government and in our social relations, and that we do hereby earnestly recommend to the people of the State to manfully meet the issue now attempted to be forced upon them, and to use every proper means within their power to avert the impending
Resolved, That, while we are unalterably opposed to political and social equality with the black race, we yet have no unjust prejudices against that race; that we are determined, by just laws, to protect them fully in all their civil rights, and to confer upon them all privileges which can be done consistently with the safety and welfare of both races. Resolved, That the distressed and impoverished condition of our people earnestly demands the speediest and wisest measures of relief that the Legislature can devise.
Resolved, That this convention recognizes, with feelings of gratitude, the heroic and patriotic efforts of the President of the United States, to restore the Union and harmony and good-will among the Amer
Resolved, That this convention regards the Supreme Court of the United States as the legitimate
expounder, in the last resort, of the Constitution
and believes that its rights and powers, in that respect, should be preserved intact, as established by law in the earlier and better days of the Republic, and that any serious impairment thereof, by legis lation or otherwise, will be destructive to the best interests of the country, and dangerous to the liberties of the people.
the Southern States under the conduct of that er Resolved, That, despairing of any restoration of ganization which now controls the proceedings of Congress, waiving all former party feeling and preju dice, this convention does most unhesitatingly re ommend and invite the cooperation of all the people of North Carolina with the Democrats and Conservative men of the North and West, who are now nobly struggling for the maintenance of the Constitution of the United States, and the restoration of the Southern States to their rights in the Union, on the solid foundation of harmony and peace.
The Republican Convention met at Raleigh on the 2d of March, and placed candidates in nomination for the offices to be filled at the election in April. The Republican candidate for Governor was Wm. W. Holden, and Thomas S. Ashe was nominated by the Democrats.
The whole number of voters registered in the State of North Carolina was 196,876, of whom 117,431 were whites and 79,445 colored The whole vote on the constitution at the elec tion of April, 1868, was 167,127; 93,118 votes were for ratification, and 74,009 against it, giv ing a majority of 19,109 in favor of adopting that instrument. The entire vote cast for Governor was 179,950; Holden received 94499, and Ashe 83,451; Holden's majority, 13048. There were seven members of Congress chosen, Republicans from the first, second third, fourth, and fifth districts, and Dem crats from the sixth and seventh districts. The constitution of the State Legislature is as follows:
Republican majority. 26
The constitution of North Carolina met the approbation of Congress, and, on the 25th of June, an act passed that body to admit this among other Southern States, into the Unier as soon as the proposed amendment of the Federal Constitution should be ratified by its Legislature. In order that the vote might be taken on this matter, and that such laws might be passed as should be necessary in reorgani ing the Government of the State, the General Assembly was convoked, by proclamation of the Governor elect, to meet at Raleigh on the first day of July. Judge Pearson, who was t administer the oath of office to the members of the Legislature, was informed by General Can by that no oath would be required except the prescribed in the constitution of the State. I order to facilitate the organization of the new State Government, the Governor and Liestenant-Governor were removed by military order, and the persons appointed who had been lately elected to those positions. This order was to take effect on the meeting of the Legis