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Full text of "The public records of the state of Connecticut"

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The 

Public Records 

of the 




STATE of CONNECTICUT 

FROM MAY THROUGH OCTOBER 1818 

VOLUME XIX 

Edited in accordance with an Act of 
The General Assembly 

Douglas M. Arnold 
Editor 



Jennifer Serventi 
Kathy A. Toavs 
Assistant Editors 



James P. Beals 

Publication Manager 

Susanne Coleman 

Transcriber 



Hartford 2007 
Published by 



The Connecticut State Library 



Kendall F. Wiggin 
State Librarian 



Mark H. Jones 
State Archivist 



©2007 Connecticut State Library 



PREFACE 



This volume contains a transcription of the positive actions of the General 
Assembly of Connecticut during the year 1818 and the records of the Constitu- 
tional Convention of 1818. The manuscript which forms the core of this 
volume — and of the entire Public Records series — is the official record of all 
the acts, resolutions, and appointments made by the General Assembly. It is 
housed at the Connecticut State Library in Hartford; the records of the May 
and October 1818 sessions reproduced here can be found on pages 259-409 
and 415-507 of Volume 12 of the manuscript; the text of the Constitution of 
1 8 1 8 has been taken from pages 1-13 of the first pagination of Volume 13. The 
notoriously inaccurate manuscript indexes have been omitted. The Journal of 
the Constitutional Convention has been transcribed from the official set of 
manuscript and printed materials at the Connecticut State Library; the Conven- 
tion's debates have been transcribed from contemporary newspapers. 

Time constraints did not permit exhaustive research. The footnotes high- 
light the major activities of the General Assembly, identify some obscure 
themes and developments, indicate where additional primary source materials 
can be found in the Connecticut Archives series at the Connecticut State Li- 
brary, and provide information about important public figures. Brief 
biographies usually appear in footnotes on the first appearance of an individual 
in a major office, but other key leaders are occasionally identified as appropri- 
ate; in Volume XVIII and Volume XIX a decision has been made to provide 
biographical data for the key figures in the 1818 Constitutional Convention, 
but not for all of the speakers in the legislative debates included as appendices 
to the sessions of the Assembly. Cross-references point to matters discussed 
in earlier volumes. Since we have not been able to reference all the material 
in the collection of bills and petitions rejected by the Assembly, researchers 
are advised to consult those files at the Connecticut State Library; the items 
are arranged by year, and contain much of interest relating to the affairs of 
towns, churches, schools, turnpike companies, bridge companies, fisheries, 
and other business enterprises. 

The period under consideration saw a significant expansion in newspaper 
coverage of the proceedings and debates of the House of Representatives, no- 
tably in papers such as the Connecticut Courant, Connecticut Mirror, 
Connecticut Journal, American Mercury, Connecticut Herald, and The 



IV PREFACE 

Times; by October 1817 reporters and editors were evidently sharing mate- 
rial, because similar accounts were being printed in different newspapers, a 
practice that continued for the Constitutional Convention of 1818. Since 
these materials directly reflect the Assembly's work, we have taken account 
of them to the extent that time permits. Our general practice is to rely on two 
newspaper versions of the proceedings and debates for each session, one 
from a newspaper associated with the Federalist party, the other from a Re- 
publican-Tolerationist journal: in practice, this has usually meant the 
Federalist Connecticut Courant (Hartford) or the Connecticut Journal 
(New Haven) and the Republican American Mercury (Hartford) or the Con- 
necticut Herald (New Haven), depending on the city in which the session 
was held. We have used footnotes to draw readers' attention to the most sig- 
nificant debates reported in the papers, and we have reproduced two of them 
in this volume. Again, researchers interested in specific legislative matters 
are advised to consult the newspapers themselves, since there is much in- 
formation that we have been unable to include. 

More limited is our use of the vast quantity of editorials, letters to the editor, 
and opinion pieces that appeared in the newspapers during these years, and 
readers interested in the range of political opinion should dig deeply into the 
newspapers themselves, being sure to compass journals associated with each 
political party. Fortunately, the Acorn Club of Connecticut is currently con- 
ducting a complementary project, under the editorship of Richard Buel. Jr.. 
and George J. Willauer. to publish selections from the public commentary re- 
lating to Connecticut's constitutional controversy during the years 1817-1818. 
Finally, a decision was made to conduct no research in manuscripts relating to 
individual political figures, except for Oliver Wolcott's drafts of the 1818 Con- 
stitution. We hope that the timely publication of the basic historical documents 
contained in this volume will compensate for this lack of completeness. 

Support for this project has come from the Connecticut State Library. 
Kendall F. Wiggin. the State Librarian, made the decision to fund the produc- 
tion, printing, and distribution of the volumes. The funding itself is from the 
Historical Documents Preservation Fund, administered by the State Library 
through the Office of Public Records Administrator Eunice G. DiBella. State 
Archivist Mark H. Jones was the State Library's project liaison. I am espe- 
cially indebted to Mark Jones and Bruce Stark of the State Archives and 
Richard C. Roberts and the excellent staff of the History and Genealogy Unit 
of the State Library for their expert help in using their collections. In addi- 
tion, the staffs of the Connecticut Historical Society (in particular Barbara 
Austen), the New Haven Colony Historical Society (in particular James 
Campbell. Bonnie Campbell, and Frances Skelton), the Library of Congress. 



PREFACE V 

the Georgetown University Library, and the American University Library 
provided invaluable assistance. Professor Richard Buel, Jr., Dr. Michael 
Besso, Professor Walter Woodward, the Connecticut State Historian, and 
Professor Christopher Collier, State Historian Emeritus, reviewed and made 
key suggestions for the volume's Introduction. I am particularly grateful to 
Kit Collier for engaging me to work on the Public Records project two de- 
cades ago and for his advice and encouragement over the years. Susanne 
Coleman achieved a high level of accuracy in the initial document transcrip- 
tions. James P. Beals provided invaluable design and production services, as 
he did for the previous volume. I especially want to acknowledge Jennifer 
Serventi and Kathy Toavs, colleagues from another context, for their essen- 
tial assistance with the core editorial tasks of the volume. Finally, I would 
like to thank my wife Margo for her understanding, love, and support 
throughout the project. 

EDITORIAL PRINCIPLES: LEGISLATIVE SESSIONS 

The printed format for acts, resolutions, lists of appointments, and the like 
follows standards set in previous volumes of this long-established series, as 
does textual policy. In some instances, noted here, the edition departs from a 
literal rendition of the text, and the present volume maintains those established 
practices in the interest of consistency of presentation and cost effectiveness. 
Thus, the lists of representatives follow a standard format, with the names of 
delegates for each town rendered in sequence and with commas and the word 
"from" silently inserted. Similarly, in the appointment lists for justices of the 
peace, repetitious language has been omitted and names consolidated into 
single paragraphs. In addition, line spaces inconsistently inserted by the copy- 
ist between sections of acts and between resolutions and their attendant 
preambles have been silently removed. 

The following points are an expanded version of the textual principles for 
the presentation of handwritten manuscripts enunciated by Dorothy Lipson in 
Volume XII of this series and elaborated in practice in Volumes XIII-XVII. 

1. The original nineteenth-century spelling is retained. Likewise, such 
idiosyncrasies as the mixing of Roman and Arabic numerals in the 
numbering of sections in legislative acts are preserved. 

2. By a convention of the series, periods and commas are silently added, 
as appropriate, at the end of sentences, after abbreviations, and for 



VI PREFACE 

words in a series; they are silently removed after usages such as "2d" 
and "15th." Parentheses and quotation marks are silently closed, 
unless our reading is highly conjectural, when they are bracketed. 
Quotation marks within the titles of acts are eliminated, but are kept 
around names of acts in the text where the copyist included them. On 
occasion, bracketed punctuation is added for clarity, usually a semi- 
colon or a question mark. Otherwise, the original punctuation is not 
altered. The most challenging issue in representing manuscript punc- 
tuation is the proliferation of indistinct and ambiguous marks within 
sentences. Recognizing that the use of commas was more generous in 
this period than in modern practice, we have retained these marks 
wherever they make grammatical sense; however, we have silently 
omitted them where it appears that copyist simply dropped pen to 
paper without intending a punctuation mark 

3. Superscripts are lowered and treated as abbreviations; periods are 
uniformly inserted, as in "Esqr." "Junr." etc. 

4. Capitalization in early nineteenth-century handwritten manuscripts 
was inconsistent, although the overall tendency was to capitalize 
fewer words than in the previous century. Keeping the interests of the 
reader in mind, we have taken a middle course in our approach to cap- 
italization, while recognizing that it is impossible to render all 
ambiguities typographically. On the one hand, we wish to maintain 
the flavor of the original manuscripts, including capitalization style. 
On the other, we recognize that contemporary nineteenth-century 
printers tended to use capitals quite sparingly when they published 
legislative debates, laws, and resolutions in the newspapers and stat- 
ute books, generally confining them to proper names and titles of 
organizations, but occasionally capitalizing other nouns. Given these 
contemporary precedents, we have attempted to avoid excessive capi- 
talization. However, we recognize that there is a long-term weight of 
practice in the Public Records favoring capitalization of certain 
words, particularly in the appointment lists for judges, justices, and 
militia officers, and for such words as "State" and "General Assem- 
bly" throughout the text. We have kept these precedents before us 
when rendering these words. To summarize our basic procedures: 

In the very formulaic sections of the manuscript, particularly the 
long lists of appointments, we have favored consistency of practice, as 
has been the case in previous volumes of the Public Records. Thus, we 
capitalize such terms as "County Court," and "Company of Militia in 
this State" where there is any possible ambiguity. In practice, this has 



PREFACE VI 1 

led to only a few instances in which the local practice of the copyist in 
discrete sections of the manuscript produced variations. 

In the other sections of the Public Records, comprised mostly of 
legislative acts and resolutions, we have allowed for more variation in 
capitalization. Our basic principles are the following. If a letter is 
clearly a capital, it is rendered in upper case; if a letter is clearly in 
lower case, it is left in lower case, even if it is a proper name. The sole 
exception is the first word in a sentence, which is silently capitalized. 
Those usages that we consider ambiguous characteristically involve 
the copyists' use of a variety of sizes for a letter, such as "c" or "s," 
which is usually shaped in the same way. In resolving ambiguous 
usages, our first step has been to take the individual copyist's practice 
into account. If we have noted local variations in style within these 
long manuscripts, we have given these some weight; this was mostly 
done during the transcription and initial two-person reading of the 
manuscript. Similarly, if the copyist tended to capitalize nouns, we 
have followed this precedent in cases of ambiguity. In the many cases 
that remained ambiguous after applying these principles, we have fa- 
vored the practice of capitalizing only proper names and titles, 
including the names of specific governmental, ecclesiastical, and mil- 
itary units. General or referential usages of similar words are 
generally not capitalized in ambiguous situations. For example, while 
the word "Court" in "Supreme Court of Errors" would be capitalized 
if the size is ambiguous, the general or referential use of the word, 
such as "a court" or "said court," would not be. As this discussion 
makes clear, it has been impossible to find any one set of rules that 
will fully cover all instances. 

As in previous volumes, obvious transcription errors and slips of the 
pen, like the inadvertent repetition of a word, phrase, or passage, have 
been silently struck. The few interlineations are incorporated silently 
into the text; the few passages that were crossed out have been indi- 
cated by strikethroughs. 

Following a convention of the series, titles of legislative acts are ren- 
dered in boldface and a bracketed reference to the published laws is 
added immediately following the title. Signature blocks at the end of 
the acts also follow a standard format. Italics are provided for the 
titles of newspapers and for introductory phrases such as "Be it Re- 
solved" and "Enacted." Underlining in the original manuscript is 
rendered as underlining in the text. When the copyist attempted to 



VI 11 PREFACE 

highlight a name of an entity by using larger lettering, we have ren- 
dered the name in small capitals. 
7. An editorial insertion is framed by square brackets. The editorial sic 
is used with restraint. On occasion, a note gives an extended explana- 
tion of a particular textual decision. 

In this volume, in addition to the usual manuscript material, we have in- 
cluded several items drawn from contemporary newspapers — two important 
legislative debates and the text of Governor Oliver Wolcott's speech at the May 
1818 session. These materials are rendered literally as the nineteenth-century 
printers set them, with no attempt to standardize punctuation, capitalization, 
italicization, or format. For the debates, we have presented two versions in 
double-column format, one from each set of partisan newspapers, selected ac- 
cording to the principles outlined earlier in this Preface. We believe that the 
accounts that we have reproduced give a good idea of the content and tone of 
the debates, and that an attempt to record variations between newspaper ac- 
counts within each partisan group would have unduly set back the publication 
of the volume. Those who wish to research specific issues in depth, however, 
are advised to consult the full range of newspapers. 

EDITORIAL PRINCIPLES: CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION 

We have followed the following guidelines in presenting the records of the 
1818 Constitutional Convention. 

1 . The manuscript is rendered in the same manner as the text of the legisla- 
tive sessions: interlineations are incorporated silently into the text; 
passages that were crossed out have been indicated by strikethroughs. 
The only difference between the two texts is that interlineations and 
cross-outs are much more frequent in the Journal than in the legislative 
records. Although this makes for a sometimes cluttered text, it preserves 
a sense of the level of revision that the members and clerks engaged in 
during the course of the proceedings; having as complete a record as pos- 
sible of such changes is enlightening, we think, for the study of the 
crucial process of constitution-making, as well as revealing of the speed 
at which the Convention worked. Those who wish for a "clean" version 
of the Journal, omitting the cross-outs, should consult [Charles J. 
Hoadly, ed.,] Journal of the Constitutional Convention of Connecticut, 
Held at Hartford, in 1818 (Hartford, 1873; reprinted, 1911). 

2. The manuscript Journal contains two types of clerical markings that 
we have not transcribed, usually because of their redundancy. The list 



PREFACE IX 

of members includes numbers in the margins tallying the number of 
towns and members listed. It also contains some repetitious penciled 
markings, possibly made at the time, concerning the votes of 
delegates. 

The clerks incorporated into the Journal the printed versions of the 
draft Declaration of Rights and Constitution that served as working 
copies for the delegates; we have printed these as a unit following the 
text of the Journal and debates. These documents are transcribed liter- 
ally as the printer set them, with inconsistencies maintained. In these 
sections inked cross-outs made by the clerks are indicated by 
strikethroughs; inked changes are indicated in a different typeface 
either above the line or in the margins. 

As in the legislative debates, the Convention's debates are rendered 
literally as the newspaper printers set them, with no attempt to stan- 
dardize punctuation, capitalization, italicization, or format. The 
newspaper accounts fall into two separate partisan "families," no 
doubt because the editors and reporters pooled notes and then shared 
the combined texts among themselves. The base text for one family 
has been taken from the Connecticut Courant, which contains the 
most complete version for that family; the other has been taken from 
the American Mercury, which is generally the most complete one for 
that family, with the final set of debates, omitted by the Mercury, from 
the Connecticut Herald. Since the two families were each reprinted in 
other state newspapers, we have noted important variations affecting 
meaning within the families, but have not noted inconsequential dif- 
ferences in wording, punctuation, or capitalization; neither have we 
indicated places where another account omitted or summarized a sec- 
tion printed in full in the base text. To indicate all these variants, we 
believe, would encumber the volume with unnecessary editorial ap- 
paratus. If a very small section of the text, such as a word or a few 
letters, is indistinct in the base text, we have verified our reading si- 
lently from another newspaper in the same family. 

The following is a list of the newspapers consulted for the Conven- 
tion's proceedings and debates. In the analysis and presentation of 
variants we have found very useful Wesley Horton's earlier edition of 
texts from the Courant and the Journal, "Annotated Debates of the 
1818 Constitutional Convention," Connecticut Bar Journal, Vol. 65, 
Special Issue (1991). 



PREFACE 

Federalist Family: 

Base Text: 

Connecticut Courant, September 1,8, 15, 22, 1818. 

Variant Texts: 

Connecticut Mirror, August 31, September 7, 14, 21. 1818. 

Connecticut Journal, September 1,8, 15, 22, 29, 1818. 

Connecticut Gazette, September 2, 9, 16, 23, 30, 1818. 

Columbian Register, August 29. September 5, 19, 26, October 3, 
1818; the issue of September 12 is missing. 

Middlesex Gazette, September 3. 10. 17, 24, October 1, 1818; the 
final issue contains debates from the Republican-Tolerationist 
"family" as well. 

Republican-Tolerationist Family: 

Base Text: 

American Mercury; September 1, 8. 15, 22. 29, 1818. 

Connecticut Herald, October 13, 1818. 

Variant Texts: 

Connecticut Herald, September 1. 15, 22, October 6, 1818. 

The Times, September 1, 8, 15, 29, October 6. 1818. 

Middlesex Gazette, October 1, 1818. 
There is considerable variation between the accounts of the debates 
given in the two families as described above, as could be expected 
from newspapers reflecting the interests and perspectives of two dif- 
ferent political movements. Hence, the texts are printed in double 
columns for ease of comparison. As much as possible, we have 
aligned variant versions of proceedings and speeches with each other. 
The texts appear sequentially as they do in the Courant, Mercury, and 
Herald. Individual speeches appear in single blocks in both versions: 
we have not attempted to split the shorter versions of speeches to 
align more closely with the longer ones, since we believe that that it is 
important to maintain the integrity of each version. In those cases 
where one base text has material that does not appear in the other, the 
two-column presentation allows for ease of comparison of the news- 
papers' coverage; this requires much use of white space, but this is 
often revealing of differences in partisan emphasis. 
We have omitted from the newspaper versions certain official and 
procedural items that appear in definitive form in the Convention's 
Journal: delegate and committee lists, draft versions of sections of the 
Constitution, texts of amendments, and roll call votes. We have noted 
these omissions as appropriate. 

Douglas M. Arnold 

July 4. 2007 

Washington. D.C. 



CONTENTS 

PREFACE iii 

INTRODUCTION xiii 

LIST OF ACTS liii 

GENERAL ASSEMBLY, MAY 1818 SESSION 1 

Appendix: Gov. Oliver Wolcott's Opening Speech 107 

Appendix: Debate on the Suffrage Act Ill 

Appendix: Debate on the Calling of the Constitutional Convention . 120 
CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION OF 1818 

Convention Journal and Debates 143 

Printed Drafts of the Constitution 307 

Constitution of 1818 327 

GENERAL ASSEMBLY, OCTOBER 1818 SESSION 341 

BIBLIOGRAPHIC NOTES 437 

INDEX 445 



INTRODUCTION 



This volume of The Public Records of the State of Connecticut carries the 
story begun in the previous installment through the crucial year of 1818. The 
present Introduction should be read in conjunction with that to Volume XVIII 
for the background of the politics of the years from 1816 to 1818, which wit- 
nessed the fall of the Federalist party, the writing of a state Constitution, and 
the restructuring of Connecticut's ecclesiastical arrangements, marking an end 
to the so-called "Standing Order" that had dominated the state for years. In the 
spring of 1817 the political coalition known as the Toleration or Reform party, 
composed of Jeffersonian Republicans, moderate ex-Federalists, and religious 
dissenters, gained a majority in the state House of Representatives and elected 
their candidate Oliver Wolcott as governor, ending years of Federalist control. 
In the fall 1817 elections the reformers bolstered their strength in the House of 
Representatives. Even more significantly, the voters chose a slate of nominees 
sympathetic to the Tolerationist cause for the Council or Upper House of the 
state legislature. The path was now clear for the reformers to take control of the 
Council in the spring 1818 elections, removing the last obstacle to their 
agenda. Beneath the surface, however, differences were brewing within the co- 
alition. Republican leaders and their followers had pursued a Jeffersonian 
platform of political action since the early years of the nineteenth century, 
while the political moderates allied with Gov. Wolcott supported an agenda 
which included a number of economic and political ideas traditionally associ- 
ated with the Federalists. These differences, and ones involving disagreement 
between moderate and populist Republicans, figured extensively in Connecti- 
cut politics during the next decade, but for a time the reformers were 
sufficiently united to achieve their main political goals. 1 



May 1818 

The movement for basic constitutional reform, only implicit in the edited 
sources that formed the core of the previous volume in this series, moves to 
center stage in the documents reproduced below. Although fundamental 



1 . A concise general account of these developments can be found in Van Dusen, Connecticut, 
pp. 1 88-90. The standard published monographs are Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, and Morse, 
Neglected Period. Considerable political detail, much of it concerning the state's party conflicts, 
can be found in both narrative and analytical form in Stamps, "Political Parties," Thomas, 
"Politics," and Brownsword, "Political Patterns." For a discussion of shifting partisan alignments 
and nomenclature during these years, see S.R., XVIII, xix(n). 



XIV INTRODUCTION 

constitutional change had been part of the Republicans' political program 
since the early years of the nineteenth century, the movement to call a constitu- 
tional convention was not assured of success until the Council was willing to 
cooperate. The campaign before the spring 1818 election focused on that 
issue. 2 The Republican representatives to the October 1817 legislative session 
wrote an address to the backers of the reform coalition, signed by Lyme dele- 
gate Moses Warren, designed to initiate the next stage. The representatives 
acknowledged that the work of reform begun in May 1817 had not been en- 
tirely accomplished "for reasons known to yourselves," presumably the 
Council's obstructionism. Among the "immense objects" still to be undertaken 
were "equalizing taxation; securing the freedom of Elections; [and] removing 
the burdens incident to military duty." These were, of course, among the many 
political reforms advocated by Tolerationists and Republicans in 1816 and 
1817. With the election of new Council members impending, the time was ripe 
for a further push for reform, and the representatives called for the writing of a 
"Constitution grounded on the best principles," reminding the voters that they 
were "the origin and fountain of power." Although Warren and his colleagues 
did not explicitly call for a special constitutional convention elected by the 
people, it could be read plainly between the lines of their address. 3 

Starting in late 1817 and continuing up to the spring election in April 1818, 
official town meetings and unofficial gatherings had instructed or recom- 
mended that their representatives to the General Assembly call for a 
constitutional convention; historian Richard J. Purcell has noted that by April 
Cheshire, New Haven, Wallingford, Danbury, New London, Hamden, Wind- 
sor, Woodbury, Middletown, Suffield, Groton, Lyme, Stonington, Newtown, 
Hartford, Redding, Stafford, and Greenwich, among other towns, had issued 
such instructions. 4 The constitutional issue figured heavily in the election cam- 
paign. The publishers of the Times of Hartford, ardent advocates of the 
Republican cause and representative of the most populist wing of the Toler- 
ationist coalition, reminded their supporters that the work of reform had hardly 
begun and "that they have got to form, establish, and organize a government for 
the state of Connecticut." 5 Meanwhile, the reformers reached out to moderate 



2. General accounts of the spring 1818 election and May legislative session can be found in 
Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 231-35; Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 243-50; Thomas, 
"Politics," pp. 256-57, 258-61; Brownsword, "Political Patterns," pp. 90-99. 

3. "ADDRESS of the Republican representatives, to the Friends of Toleration and Reform in 
Connecticut," Mercury, Nov. 4, 1817. 

4. Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, p. 231; Thomas, "Politics," pp. 259-60; Brownsword, 
"Political Patterns," p. 99. Many of these instructions can be found in the Archives, Civil Officers, 
Ser. 2, XXII. 

5. Editorial, Times, Mar. 1 7, 1 8 1 8. For the role of the Times, under the editorship of John M. Niles, 
in advocating populist and democratic causes in the state, see Pasley, Tyranny of Printers, pp. 376-89. 



INTRODUCTION XV 

Federalists. For example, an address printed in New Haven's Columbian Reg- 
ister reminded voters of various features of the state's system of government 
that violated constitutional arrangements that Federalist leaders had long ad- 
vocated nationally; these included the dominance of the state legislature and 
the subsequent blending of legislative, executive, and judicial powers without 
effective mechanisms to balance the governmental branches. In calling for "a 
written constitution of civil government, with proper restrictions and limita- 
tions, to be settled and adjusted by a convention of the people," the writer laid 
particular emphasis on the dependence of the Superior Court judges on annual 
appointment under the current system. 6 Although historians have correctly 
pointed out that a number of Federalists by this time supported governmental 
changes to rectify such problems, 7 others held the line in defense of the estab- 
lished political order, repeating customary praise of the state's political system 
and attacking their opponents as political opportunists. 

The outcome of the spring election was entirely in favor of the reform coali- 
tion. At their fall caucus, the Federalists had declined to nominate candidates 
for state office in 1818. Recent historians have given various explanations for 
this, pointing to such divergent factors as the desire of individual Federalists to 
retain their offices against the rising call for change and the hope that internal 
disagreements among the reformers would eventually scuttle their program 
and open the door to Federalist resurgence; it is likely that a variety of motives 
were at play within the Federalist coalition. 8 Without an official Federalist 
slate in the field, Oliver Wolcott and Jonathan Ingersoll, the reform candidates, 
were re-elected governor and lieutenant governor without significant opposi- 
tion. The newly-elected House of Representatives had a strong Tolerationist ma- 
jority, and the reformers carried their entire slate of nominees for the U.S. 
Congress. Most crucially, as expected — and despite some partisan maneuver- 
ing — the reformers achieved their goal in the election to the Upper House, with 
eight new members joining four carry-overs from the Federalist-dominated Coun- 
cil of 1817; one of the latter was Gov. Wolcott's brother Frederick and another, 
Asa Chapman, was an Episcopalian and a political moderate; Chapman was 
shortly appointed to the Superior Court, removing him from the Upper House. 



6. "To the Citizens of Connecticut," Register, Feb. 10, 1818. This piece, as well as several 
others cited in this Introduction, will be published by the Acorn Club of Connecticut in Richard 
Buel, Jr., and George J. Willauer, eds., Original Discontents: Commentaries on the Creation of 
Connecticut's Constitution of 1818 (Hamden, Conn., 2007). 

7. Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 244-45; Thomas, "Politics," p. 260. 

8. Thomas, "Politics," pp. 256-57, 259-60; Brownsword, "Political Patterns," pp. 90-96. 
These historians note that the Federalists made a late and unsuccessful attempt to promote a slate of 
candidates for the U.S. House of Representatives. 



XVI INTRODUCTION 

The die was now cast; the Council would no longer oppose the reformers' 
agenda. The Times, editorializing on the results of the election, observed that 

The victory is now complete . . . The ensuing session of the 
Legislature will be the most interesting that ever was wit- 
nessed in Connecticut. The important subjects of forming a 
state constitution; the extension of the rights of suffrage to 
all persons of lawful age, who pay taxes and do military 
duty; the abolition of the ecclesiastical establishment, and a 
more equal system of taxation, will undoubtedly occupy a 
large portion of their deliberation, and be disposed of in a 
manner most acceptable to public opinion. 9 

On a more mundane level, the reformers' triumph had an immediate impact on 
appointments to office at the May 1818 session, when the Assembly removed a 
number of Federalist justices of the peace and appointed Republicans and Tol- 
erationists in their place. It is evident that other removals and replacements 
were also made among the county court and probate judges appointed at the 
May session. In addition, the legislature selected reform candidate and long- 
time Republican leader Isaac Spencer 2nd as state treasurer. That race was 
hard-fought and Spencer failed to achieve an absolute majority in the popular 
vote over long-term Federalist incumbent Andrew Kingsbury, apparently be- 
cause of a technicality. The Assembly also replaced the long-standing group of 
overseers for Newgate Prison with three new men, undoubtedly more sympa- 
thetic to the cause of reform. 10 

Gov. Wolcott set the stage for constitutional change in his speech opening 
the session, again taking the moderate and conciliatory tack that was character- 
istic of his approach. But unlike his speech in May 1817, he confronted the 
basic constitutional issue directly. 11 While taking care to praise the established 
political system of the state under the 1662 royal charter as "the most venerable 
& precious monument of republican government existing among men," he also 
characterized it as "unprovisional and imperfect," despite its long-term success 
in securing self-government to the state under the British crown and its 



9. Editorial, Times, Apr. 21, 1818. 

10. For a longer discussion of the political controversies over the appointment of justices and 
other state officials in 1 8 1 7 and 1818, see S.R. , XVIII, xxxvi-xxxviii. Jeffrey Pasley notes that these 
removals did not satisfy the most populist members of the reform coalition, who continued to call 
for more extensive changes in personnel: Tyranny of Printers, pp. 386-87. For Spencer's election 
and the replacement of the Newgate overseers, see below, pp. 7, 7n, 8, 8n. 

11. The speech is printed below, pp. 107-10, as an appendix to the May 1818 legislative 
session; for a discussion of Wolcott's May 1817 speech, see S.R., XVIII, xxxi-xxxiv. 



INTRODUCTION XV11 

continuing utility after American Independence. Now, he stated, a significant 
number of Connecticut's citizens desired "that the legislative, executive, and 
judicial authorities of their own government, may be more precisely defined 
and limited, and the rights of the people declared and acknowledged." The gov- 
ernor was clearly endorsing the reformers' calls for a written state constitution 
with balanced governmental branches and a declaration of rights; unstated, but 
implicit, was the need to bring the constitutional system more in line with what 
had become the American norm. 

The governor's endorsement of basic reform led to two important actions at 
the May 1818 session: an act redefining the suffrage qualifications for freemen 
and resolutions calling for a constitutional convention for the summer of 1 8 1 8. 
Both inspired extended debates in the House of Representatives, which are re- 
produced below as appendices to the session. The suffrage act 12 continued the 
reform of the election laws begun with the repeal of the "Stand-up Law" in Oc- 
tober 1817. Basic statute law declared that persons of the age of twenty-one or 
above who held a freehold estate at the value of seven dollars per year or per- 
sonal estate valued at one hundred and thirty-four dollars, or who were "by law 
excused from putting it into the list," and who were of "a quiet and peaceful be- 
haviour, and civil conversation," were eligible for admission as freemen, with 
the privilege of voting in state elections. In 1813 the Assembly had tightened 
the enforcement of the property requirements, and in 1814 it passed a law that 
explicitly restricted the franchise to free white males and clarified the town res- 
idency requirement, setting it at four months. The Republicans had long criticized 
the property qualifications, arguing that those who paid taxes or who served in the 
militia deserved representation. They had also objected to certain legal procedures 
governing the admission of freemen as favoring their political rivals. 13 

Although it by no means established universal suffrage, the May 1818 act 
was a major step in opening the franchise. In essence, it weakened the property 
qualification and gave the vote to all white males who paid taxes or performed 
military duty, with a provision allowing those who held real or personal prop- 
erty that was exempt from taxation to become freemen. Making taxpaying or 
militia service rather than property the primary basis for voting was undoubt- 
edly motivated by practical as well as theoretical reasons, as the reformers 



12. Below, pp. 36, 36n. 

13. Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 355-57, 357n, 650; S.R., XVI, xxx, 215, 215n; XVII, xviii, 49, 49n; 
Swift, System of the Laws, I, 69, 118-19. See also Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 140-43; 
Williamson, American Suffrage, pp. 16-17, 36, 49-50, 113, 165-72, 182-9. These sources also 
discuss differences, both in law and in practice, between voting qualifications for town and state 
elections; those differences sometimes figured in the discussions of electoral reform documented in 
this volume. 



XV111 INTRODUCTION 

moved to enfranchise more of their supporters. 14 The legislative debate repro- 
duced below gives additional information about the progress of the bill and the 
positions taken by its supporters and opponents. 15 After the defeat of an 
amendment that would have extended the residency requirement to twelve 
months and the amendment of the language concerning the moral character of 
voters, the representatives entered into an extended discussion touching on 
fundamental questions about the nature of the franchise. Tolerationist and Re- 
publican speakers, including Elisha Phelps of Simsbury, the bill's sponsor, and 
Nathan Pendleton of North Stonington, put their emphasis on fundamental 
rights, arguing "that taxation and representation should go hand in hand;" they 
also pointed to the extension of the vote in other American states. Federalist 
opponents of change in the laws, most eloquently East Hartford representative 
Shubael Griswold, stressed that "the right of suffrage is not a natural right — it 
is a right conferred — a right which grows out of community, and which is gov- 
erned by the laws of a community — it is a right bestowed." Hence, traditional 
limitations on the franchise should be maintained, even if certain taxpayers 
were excluded. In the course of the debate, other important questions were ad- 
dressed. These included the status of women, people of color, and non- 
propertied factory workers and militiamen under the state's electoral laws. 
Seemingly without irony, Griswold and Aaron Austin stated that many women 
and people of color were better suited to exercise the vote than the poor white 
males who would be enfranchised under the new law. Federalist objections, al- 
though very revealing of the ideological cross-currents of the time, were not 
enough to prevent adoption of the measure. This electoral reform, of course, 
did nothing to improve the condition of persons disenfranchised by inclusion 
of the qualifying words "white male" in the 1 8 1 4 and 1818 acts. An unsuccess- 
ful petition to the May 1818 session from "free persons of colour" in Norwich 
contained arguments similar to those made by African American residents of 
New Haven in 1814 and, ironically, by the reformers in support of the exten- 
sion of the franchise: it was unfair that they be taxed without being able to vote 
for representatives; since they were deprived of the franchise for no other 



14. Williamson, American Suffrage, p. 184, suggests that the May 1818 law was intended to 
open the franchise before the July 4 vote for delegates to the Constitutional Convention and hence 
bolster support for reform. To what extent it actually had this effect is unclear, particularly in the 
light of considerable Federalist strength in the Convention itself: the suffrage law was not passed 
until early June and time was required to publicize the change and to enroll new voters; while the 
Republican Mercury printed the law in its June 9 issue, the Federalist Courant and Journal did not 
do so until June 23 and 30 respectively. 

15. See below, pp. 111-19. 



INTRODUCTION XIX 

reason than lacking "a fair complexionr they should either be exempted from 
the poll tax or admitted to the vote. 16 

Even more important than the suffrage act were the resolutions calling a 
convention. 17 On May 16, the House of Representatives discussed the appoint- 
ment of a committee to consider the governor's recommendations on 
constitutional revision. This occasioned a renewal of the debate from 1817 
about whether legislative business should be conducted through select com- 
mittees of the House or joint committees including members from both the 
House and the Council. Speakers rehearsed the standard arguments. Propo- 
nents of a select committee argued that the two houses were legislatively 
independent and that the traditional practice of joint committees gave the 
Council too much influence, while the defenders of tradition contended that 
joint committees promoted harmonious relations between the houses. In this 
case, the House opted for the appointment of a select committee of its own 
members, despite the fact that the Council was now sympathetic to the reform- 
ers and could be expected to support their agenda. The five-man committee 
was chaired by Orange Merwin of New Milford, and included David Plant, 
Shubael Griswold, Nathan Pendleton, and Nathaniel Griffing. The choice of 
Griswold was interesting, since he was one of the strictest of old Federalists 
and a die-hard opponent of political change in the state. In the May 16 debate 
on joint and select committees, he had argued in favor of the former, and his in- 
clusion on the House's select committee might have been either a conciliatory 
gesture by the reform majority or an attempt to lessen his opposition by includ- 
ing him in the drafting process; in any event, he refused to sign the committee's 
report and spoke against it. 18 



16. Rejected Bills, 1815-1817, Box 4, 1817, folder 12, doc. 5; S.R., XVII, 544-46. Griswold's 
and Austin's remarks indicate that while these conservative Federalists accepted the traditional 
exclusion of married women and workers from the vote because they were dependent on husbands 
and employers respectively, they were at least theoretically open to the exercise of the franchise by 
free men of color and single women if they met the property qualifications. During the debate, 
reformers Samuel Foote and Nathan Pendleton also made gestures toward some form of female 
suffrage. It should be noted, however, that we have found no evidence in the public prints that such 
arguments were made by either Federalist or Republican politicians in 1814, when the initial 
restrictions were adopted by a Federalist-dominated Assembly. 

17. Below, pp. 42-43, 43n. For general discussions of the context of these resolutions, see 
Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, pp. 41-48; Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 234-35; 
Thomas, "Politics," pp. 258-59. 

18. House Journal, May 16, 1818; House Proceedings of May 16, June 1, 1818: Mercury, May 19, 
June 9, 1 8 1 8. For the background of the issue of joint vs. select committees, see S.R., XVIII, xxxv-xxxvi. 



XX INTRODUCTION 

In that report, which formed the basis for key legislative debates in early 
June, the committee, like the governor, conceded that the colony and state had 
enjoyed much "political happiness" under its traditional system of govern- 
ment; however, it laid even more weight on the system's defects, which were 
primarily derived from the lack of "fundamental laws defining & limiting the 
powers of the Legislature." The frequency of elections was not enough to pro- 
tect individual rights, the committee argued, or secure "the first principles of a 
free government" against "arbitrary power" exercised by "the Legislative 
will." Numerous town resolutions, the committee noted, demonstrated "a gen- 
eral manifestation of a desire for a revision & reformation of the structure of 
our Civil Government and the establishment of a Constitutional Compact." In 
conclusion, the committee noted that "The organization of the different 
branches of government, the separation of their powers, the tenure of office, 
the elective franchise, liberty of speech & of the press, freedom of conscience, 
trial by Jury, — rights which relate to these deeply interesting subjects ought 
not to be suffered to rest on the frail foundation of Legislative will or discre- 
tion." In addition, the committee presented a draft resolution calling for the 
election a convention to prepare a constitution for the state and submit it to the 
towns for ratification. 19 

The committee's proposal was the subject of considerable debate and revi- 
sion before being adopted in the form of the resolutions printed below, which 
established procedures for electing delegates to a convention and mechanisms 
for ratifying a proposed constitution. On the most general level, representa- 
tives debated the fundamental question of whether constitutional revision was 
indeed necessary. Proponents of constitutional change, including David Plant, 
Samuel A. Foote, George Hubbard, Daniel Burrows, and James Stevens, 
echoed the arguments of the committee, stressing the need for a written consti- 
tution to define clearly the powers of government and secure the rights of the 
people. They also argued that the town resolutions sent to the Assembly proved 
that a majority in the state wished for such revisions. Opponents, including 
Jonathan W. Edwards, Shubael Griswold, Aaron Austin, and John McClellan, 
argued against calling a convention, reiterating the standard Federalist position 
that the Fundamental Orders of 1639, the Charter of 1662, evolving statute law, 
and traditional practices formed an effective working constitution for the state. 
In the process, they contended that the Charter, despite its promulgation by the 
King of England, had been obtained through negotiation and was ultimately 



19. The committee's report can be found in Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, XVIII. 1. A 
transcribed version is in Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, pp. 43-44; the draft resolution is 
reproduced below, p. 120. 



INTRODUCTION XXI 

based on the will of Connecticut's citizens. In addition, they argued that fre- 
quent elections served as an effective bar to legislative tyranny. They also 
contended, contrary to their opponents, that the town resolutions in favor of a 
convention were insufficiently representative of opinion in the state and that 
"the sober and judicious part of the community" saw no need for constitutional 
change, concluding that the matter should be postponed; precipitous action 
should be avoided, especially during a period of great partisan strife. 20 

Appeals for postponement were unsuccessful, however, and the House's 
majority moved decisively to call a convention, after spending a few days de- 
bating specific arrangements. The representatives fixed the date for the 
election of delegates to the Convention as July 4, 1818, and the meeting of the 
Convention as August 26, the fourth Wednesday of that month. They also de- 
termined that Hartford, rather than New Haven or Middletown, would be the 
site, with drafting committee member Nathan Pendleton stating that he wished 
to have the meeting held in the Hartford State House to "wipe off the disgrace" 
of the Hartford Convention, held there four years earlier. A proposal by 
Samuel Foote to give each town one delegate, rather than the number each cur- 
rently sent to the Assembly, was defeated after a debate on June 1. An 
extensive discussion occurred over how a constitution prepared by the Conven- 
tion would be ratified. The original motion provided for approval by a majority 
of the towns, but it was finally determined, following a series of proposals and 
counter-proposals, that ratification should be by qualified individual voters — 
not towns in their collective capacity — in "such majority ... as shall be di- 
rected by said convention," leaving the exact proportion open for further 
discussion at the Convention itself. This matter clearly involved constitutional 
issues about the extent to which a legislature could bind a constitutional con- 
vention chosen by the people, as well as specific calculations by the legislators 
over what manner of voting would best obtain the outcome they desired. 

In addition to these major actions, the Assembly enacted other reforms at 
the May session. Two brief acts printed below repealed Federalist measures 
that had been intended, at least in part, to impede U.S. military activities during 
the War of 1812; one had prohibited national authorities from enlisting minors 
in national military service without the consent of parents or masters and the 
other had prevented militia and other soldiers from parading on city sidewalks 
without a license. 21 Further measures of the Tolerationist triumph can be seen 



20. This and the following paragraph are based on archival and newspaper documentation of 
the House proceedings on June 1, 2, and 4, reproduced below, pp. 120-42, as an appendix to the 
May session; see also House Journal, June 1, 2, 4, 5, and the account by a Federalist commentator in 
"Letter from a Member," Courant, June 16, 1818. 

21. Below, pp. 41, 41 n. 



XX11 INTRODUCTION 

in the choice of Episcopalian rector Harry Croswell to give the Election 
Sermon and a resolution awarding the Assembly's printing to partisan publish- 
ers. 22 Probably most dramatic was the decision to open the previously secret 
sessions of the Council to the public. 23 A long-standing Republican grievance, 
the Council's secrecy had been a symbolic measure of the power and privilege 
of the leaders of the old order, and the opening of the chambers was a clear 
signal that a new political era had arrived. In addition to these actions, the As- 
sembly adopted an act setting the size of the county courts at no more than 
three for the ensuing year, a judge and two justices of the quorum. This action 
was probably related to ongoing legislative discussions of the structure of the 
state court system, summarized in the Introduction to the previous volume. 
Turning to the Superior Court, they took the opportunity replace two Federalist 
stalwarts and former delegates to the Hartford Convention — Calvin Goddard 
and Simeon Baldwin — with Asa Chapman and John T. Peters, both more sym- 
pathetic to reform. 24 In addition, the Assembly adopted resolutions proposing 
an amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would have provided for the elec- 
tion of members of the national House of Representatives and presidential 
electors by districts rather than at large across the state. 25 Districting had long 
been part of the Republican program, both for Congressional elections and for 
the Upper House of the state legislature; the proposed amendment, if it had 
been successful, would have carried through this reform at the national level. 
Closely tied to constitutional reform were religious issues, which continued 
to be of great importance in 1818, although they do not appear in a major way 
in the core documents of this volume until the records of the Constitutional 
Convention. 26 At their May and October sessions, the legislators made two 
grants of relief to Episcopal churches in Fairfield and Norwalk, whose prop- 
erty had been damaged during the Revolutionary War; both sets of petitioners 
noted that other religious societies that had suffered at the time, presumably 
those of the Congregational church, had earlier received such relief. This im- 
plicit appeal for equity clearly resonated with the political climate of 1 8 1 8, and 
the legislators granted the requests with little apparent controversy. 27 The As- 
sembly also received petitions from groups of Methodists declining 



22. Below, pp. 41-42, 42n. 

23. The opening of the chambers apparently did not take place immediately, but the May 1818 
action was of considerable symbolic importance. Below, pp. 44-45, 44n. 

24. Below, pp. lOn, lOn, 40, 40n; S.R., XVIII, xli-xlii, summarizes the inconclusive debates 
over the court system in May 1817 and May 1818. 

25. Below, pp. 45-47, 45-46n. 

26. For the general background of religious issues in 1816-18, see S.R., XVIII, xiii-xvii, xxvi- 
xxviii, xl. 

27. Below, pp. 57-58, 57n, 436, 426n. 



INTRODUCTION XX111 

appropriations under the October 1816 "Act on Literature and Religion," 
making a few specific grants of relief before passing a blanket resolution in 
October 1818 allowing "any . . . denomination of christians, who have, or may 
hereafter receive any money" under the act, "and cannot conscientiously ap- 
propriate said money," to "return it into the treasury of this State." 28 

In addition to these actions, all of which were recorded in the Public Re- 
cords, the legislators at the May session considered a petition from the state's 
Baptists, reviving their formal appeals to the Assembly for an end to public 
taxation in support of religious congregations. The legislators also discussed a 
bill that would have modified the existing laws by requiring the clerks of every 
religious society that supported itself by taxation, apparently both Congrega- 
tional and dissenting, to report all persons currently on their lists as taxable but 
in the future to add only persons who requested to be included; it also included 
a provision allowing individuals to withdraw voluntarily from a society's list 
of taxable persons. As historian William McLoughlin has noted, this bill "was 
in effect a gradual disestablishing act, for eventually all societies would be 
made up entirely of voluntary members." The Assembly, however, postponed 
consideration of both the petition and the bill, presumably because the Con- 
vention would soon take up the fundamental issues that they addressed. 29 

While Gov. Wolcott emphasized the importance of political and constitu- 
tional issues in his opening speech, he did not neglect the other key component 
of his agenda: economic and financial reform in the state to increase opportu- 
nity, invigorate the state's economy, and prevent the out-migration of 
enterprising youth. Although he did not directly address the important issue of 
taxation, currently under consideration in the Assembly, he called the legisla- 
tors' attention to a number of other matters calculated to improve the economic 
climate in the state. These included agricultural improvement, the laws of 
bankruptcy and insolvency, the status of corporate shares, and the need to pro- 
vide limited liability for persons investing in various types of business 
ventures. 30 Following up Wolcott's earlier recommendations and two actions 
in October 1817, the legislators incorporated two more agricultural societies, 



28. For the background of this matter, see S.R., XVIII, xxvi-xxviii; the specific resolutions are 
below, pp. 59, 59n, 61, 6 In, 387, 387n. 

29. The Baptist petition and the bill can be found in Rejected Bills, 1818-1821, Box 5, 1819, 
folder 8, docs. 23-26. See also A Plea for the Baptist Petition . . . (Hartford, 1818); House 
Proceedings of June 3, 4, 5, 1818: Courant, June 16, 1818; Mercury, June 23, 1818. An excellent 
historical account, continuing his discussion of the Baptist petition movement in the early 1800s, can 
be found in McLoughlin, New England Dissent, II, 1047—49; here, as elsewhere, the author deals 
extensively with important differences in denominational attitudes toward public support of religion. 

30. The economic sections of the governor's speech can be found below, pp. 108-10. For a 
discussion of the taxation issue during this period, see S.R., XVIII, xxxix-xl; Wolcott's overall 
economic program is discussed in ibid., pp. xxxi-xxxiii. 



XXIV INTRODUCTION 

in Litchfield and New Haven Counties, during the session. 31 The immediate 
result of the governor's recommendations relating to corporate investments 
were the two acts below that protected the private property of shareholders in 
manufacturing companies from liability and defined shares in all "incorpo- 
rated companies in this State" as personal estate; the latter change might have 
been related to tax reform. 32 Although the acts did not address all the issues that 
Wolcott raised, they clearly moved in the direction of improving the incentives 
for business investment. 

Another area of the governor's concern was the laws of bankruptcy and in- 
debtedness, which he considered as having a dampening effect on the state's 
economy. Fraud merited punishment, he stated, but honest bankrupts, "who 
are impoverished by misfortunes, and who render all the justice in their power, 
are entitled to sympathy and protection." Merely discharging them from 
prison, but leaving their property open to attachment, would "compel them to 
migrate from the state" or lead to dishonest concealment of property. Between 
the lines, the governor was advocating a liberalization of the law both to en- 
courage individual risk and to persuade economically useful but unlucky 
citizens to remain in the state. There is evidence in the newspaper accounts that 
the legislators engaged in discussion of some issues relating to insolvency, but 
the Assembly took no positive actions on the matter during the two 1818 ses- 
sions. 33 Although many of Wolcott's recommendations were addressed to 
long-standing Republican economic grievances, some of the governor's ideas 
about how to use public policy to improve the state's economy apparently met 
with legislative resistance. 

In an apparently pressing area of social and economic policy, however, the 
Assembly began to take action: the reform of the state's poor laws. This issue 
had been before the Assembly periodically, as the legislators grappled with 
issues of how to deal with poverty in the state, passing laws to establish 



31. S.R., XVIII, 268-69, 269n, 282-83, 282n; below, pp. 50-52, 50n, 52n. 

32. Below, pp. 38, 38n, 39, 39n. 

33. The Assembly's most recent general law on insolvency was an 1815 reenactment of a law 
transferring the consideration of certain individual cases from the legislature itself to the Superior Court; 
it had been subject to some fine tuning in May 1816: S.R., XVIII, 33, 33n. Although Wolcott's point had 
been anticipated by Ellington representative Asa Willey in a speech at the May 1817 session, in which 
he advocated that the Superior Court be given authority to exempt property from attachment, legislative 
consideration in 1 8 1 8 of the matter seemed to have focused on the more narrow issue of insolvent 
estates: see, for example, the brief entries in the House Proceedings of May 22, 1817, May 27, June 1, 2, 
and Oct. 20, 1818: Mercury, May 27, 1817, June 2, 9, 16, Nov. 3, 1818. In October 1816 the legislators 
had also considered and rejected a bill on insolvent estates under mortgage: Rejected Bills, 1815-1817, 
Box 4, 1816, folder 2, doc. 17. Historian Jarvis Morse characterizes the state's policy regarding debt as 
"backward" during these years: Neglected Period, pp. 254-55. 



INTRODUCTION XXV 

workhouses and asylums for the poor and reviewing the regulations for the 
support of paupers. 34 Currently, the basic authority rested with the towns, 
which were responsible for the poor who were legally established inhabitants 
under the state's laws of settlement. Persons without a legal settlement in a 
town were eligible for state support if they were mentally impaired, subject to 
the laws of contagion, or had received support during the three months before 
their legal removal as non-inhabitants. 35 The poor laws had been under consid- 
eration in 1816 and 1817. In addition to twice providing for a careful 
accounting of expenses for the state poor, the legislators had considered sev- 
eral bills relating to the subject, but had taken no positive action. 36 In his 
message at the opening of the October 1817 session, Gov. Wolcott observed 
that "the expenses of supporting the State poor, annually account to a consider- 
able sum, and under the operation of the present system, may be expected to 
increase;" consequently, he recommended that the laws be revised. 37 

The results of this recommendation appear below. One act, at the May 1818 
session, tightened procedures for reporting indigent persons to town authori- 
ties and established penalties for selectmen who did not provide funds. A 
second, enacted in the fall, placed more stringent controls on payments to 
towns for the support of state paupers. The October act was accompanied by a 
resolution calling for further careful accounting of expenditures for the poor, 
with a directive to the state controller to report the "best mode in regard to 
economy and humanity ... for regulating and limiting the expenditures of the 
State in relation to indigent persons." 38 Historian Jarvis Morse has detected in 
these actions, and those that took place in subsequent years, evidence of Re- 
publican economizing. This was undoubtedly a factor, but support for change 



34. For the most recent legislative activity, see S.R., XVI, xxx, 222-23, 222n, 230-31, 230n, 
and the references there. 

35. Useful discussions of the poor laws during this period, summarizing the various statutes, 
can be found in Edward W. Capen., The Historical Development of the Poor Law of Connecticut 
(Studies in History, Economics and Public Law, XXII; New York, 1905), pp. 97-109, 134-35, 138- 
41, 169-71; Clark, History of Connecticut, pp. 420-37; Walradt, Financial History, pp. 47-49. 

36. For the actions on accounting, see S.R., XVIII, 116, 184. Legislative committees were 
appointed at the October 1816 and May 1817 sessions to review the poor laws; the latter committee 
concluded that it could not identify "any essential alterations [that] can be made in the laws now in 
force by which the system can be improved." Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, XXIV, 181-83. The 
legislative files contain an unsuccessful bill from October 1816 relating to the laws of settlement 
and the support and removal of paupers: Rejected Bills, 1815-1817, Box 4, 1816, folder 2, docs. 3- 
5; for other unsuccessful bills, see below, p. 362n. 

37. Mercury, Oct. 14, 1817. There had been a threefold increase in the expenditures for state 
paupers between 1804 and 1817; in October 1816 the state controller had called attention to the 
situation in his report to the Assembly. Walradt, Financial History pp. 48-49. 

38. Below, pp. 35, 35n, 362-63, 362n, 385-86. 



XXVI INTRODUCTION 

in the poor laws seems to have been more general, with Gov. Wolcott, who 
often advocated greater state action than his Republican allies, also supporting 
economy at the state level; the overall trend during the early nineteenth century 
was to transfer almost total public responsibility to the towns. 39 Town support 
was supplemented, however, by the continuing establishment of private volun- 
tary organizations and funds dealing in different ways with the problem of 
poverty, such as the Duick Charitable Society in Pomfret (1817) and the 
Middletown Female Charitable Society (1818), documented in this and the 
preceding volume. 40 



Constitutional Convention of 1818 

The spring session of the legislature closed on June 8. On July 4 the voters 
met to elect delegates to the Constitutional Convention in accordance with the 
Assembly's recent resolutions. Members of both parties agreed on the impor- 
tance of the election; Federalists and Tolerationists alike urged the choice of 
reliable delegates to consider constitutional revision. It also appears that some 
Federalists by now recognized the inevitability of constitutional revision — and 
even the desirability of certain changes, particularly regarding the judiciary — 
and were hoping to exert a moderating influence in the Convention. However, 
this was also clearly a period of flux and transition, when a variety of individ- 
ual and factional viewpoints as well as general partisan positions were at play 
within both political coalitions. 41 In the build-up to the Convention both before 
and after the election, newspaper commentators aired a wide variety of opin- 
ions. In this regard, it should be noted that some writers in both groups 
advocated positions considerably outside the moderate parameters of reform 
eventually adopted by the Convention's majority, and the continuing power of 
those positions helps explain the stances taken later by individual delegates 
and voters during the process of writing and ratifying the Constitution. 



39. Morse, Neglected Period, pp. 33-34, 48, 181-83; see also the works by Capen and Clark 
cited above. 

40. S.R., XVIII, 199-200, 199n; below, pp. 388-91, 388n. There is evidence that questions 
about the legal status of impoverished Indians were a source of at least sporadic concern during this 
period: see S.R., XVIII, 222, 222n, 288-89, 288n; below, pp. 428, 428n. 

41. The following analysis of the election and composition of the Convention is based on 
Trumbull, Connecticut Constitutions, p. 48ff; Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 236-38; 
Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 251-54; Thomas, "Politics," pp. 261-62; Brownsword, "Political 
Patterns," pp. 99-101; Brownsword, "Political Afterthoughts," pp. 5-6. Thomas and Brownsword 
have described specific partisan tactics, only partially successful, that the Federalists pursued to 
elect as many reliable delegates as possible. 



INTRODUCTION XXV11 

Many Federalist newspaper writers staged a vigorous defense of the old 
constitutional order in the state, which they rightly saw as under threat. 42 These 
commentators introduced a new argument by protesting against the short time 
frame established for the election of the Convention and the writing and ratifi- 
cation of the Constitution, a schedule that, in their opinion, gave the advantage 
to the reformers. In general, however, Federalists placed most of their empha- 
sis on the virtues of the state's "venerable, ancient, and excellent government," 
which was founded on the "purest principles of popular sovereignty." In the 
process they lavished praise on the established structures of government, the 
traditional electoral methods, and the laws supporting public religious wor- 
ship, which were "at the root of the State's dignity, integrity, and highest social, 
moral, political, and religious interests and character." In the process, they 
called for the reaffirmation of the pre- 1818 suffrage requirements, including 
the property qualifications. The only area in which Federalist writers consis- 
tently agreed that change was desirable was in securing "the independence of 
the courts," a long-standing concern of some members of their party. 

Supporters of reform, including a writer in the Columbian Register, contin- 
ued the call for the abandonment of the Charter system and the writing of a 
constitution in which the governmental branches were "carefully separated, 
and . . . carefully protected by constitutional provisions," pointing to the conti- 
nuities between the Republican program in the early 1800s and the current 
situation. 43 It is clear, however, that a number of the state's Republicans, 
coming from a more democratic viewpoint and probably skeptical about the 
commitment of their moderate Tolerationist allies to full reform, began to 
voice concern that the Convention might not produce a document that com- 
pletely embodied their ideas. A particularly forceful expression of the populist 
position appeared in a series of articles, signed "Judd," that appeared in the 
Times over the summer. 44 While the writer agreed with the overall need for 
reform, he questioned the utility of a written bill of rights in a constitution 
made by the people, argued for an explicit definition and limitation of the 
powers of the legislature, and advocated, among other specific measures, that 
representation in the lower house be based on population and that the state be 
districted for elections to the upper house to ensure the representative and pop- 
ular basis of the new government. 



42. The quotations in this paragraph are taken from strongly-argued pieces that were printed in 
the Courant ( Aug. 4, 1 1, 1818) under the pseudonym of "A Freeman." 

43. "The Constitution," Register, Aug. 8, 1818. 

44. The articles can be found in the issues of July 21, 28, Aug. 4, 11, 18, 25, 1818. The 
pseudonym consciously harkened back to the role that William Judd had played in the 1804 
Republican convention that called for reform; that gathering's address to the state had been issued 
under his name. 



XXV111 INTRODUCTION 

The men elected to the Convention represented this spectrum of opinion. 
They ranged from former governor John Treadwell of Farmington and former 
Council member Aaron Austin of New Hartford, defenders of the old constitu- 
tional and political order in the state, to strict Republicans like Alexander 
Wolcott of Middletown, who conspicuously broke with his erstwhile Toler- 
ationist allies over the issue of an independent judiciary. In between were 
leading Tolerationists, including Gov. Oliver Wolcott, representing Litchfield, 
and Nathan Smith of New Haven, and moderate Federalists like Nathaniel 
Terry of Hartford. Other Republican leaders besides Alexander Wolcott as- 
sumed prominent roles in the Convention, helping to carry through their 
party's long-standing call for constitutional change: James Stevens of Stam- 
ford, for example, although he eventually voted against the proposed 
Constitution, made the decisive motion to write a new frame of government for 
the state, while Pierpont Edwards of Stratford, an old Republican who had 
been appointed to the federal bench by President Jefferson and who had played 
an important role in the constitutional politics of 1804, chaired the committee 
that drafted the instrument. In addition, representatives of dissenting denomi- 
nations sat in the Convention and made their opinions felt; these included 
Baptist Asahel Morse of Suffield and Methodist Daniel Burrows of Hebron. 
Newspaper editors and historians have estimated the reform majority as any- 
where from nine to thirty, reduced from the strength that the coalition had 
mustered at the May legislative session; the presence of additional Federalists 
and independent thinkers undoubtedly had a moderating influence on the Con- 
vention. The fluidity of political alignments made it difficult to predict exactly 
where each delegate would end up in the final vote on the Constitution, and it is 
also clear that individual positions were affected by a variety of intellectual 
cross-currents and local interests in addition to general party programs. The 
range of opinion and the majority's conviction that constitutional change was 
necessary made it likely that the final instrument would represent a compro- 
mise, if not on central principles, at least on specific organizational matters. 

The Convention met on August 26 and worked intensively for three weeks 
on a new constitution for the state. 45 Among the milestones in its work were the 
election of Gov. Wolcott as president on the opening day, James Stevens' reso- 
lution on the same day "to form a Constitution of Civil Government for the 
people of this State," and the appointment of a committee on the next day, con- 
sisting of three members from each county, to draft a constitution. The drafting 



45. For general narratives and analyses of the Convention's work, including discussions of 
proposals, debates, and amendments, see Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, pp. 49-57; 
Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 238-58; Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 254-83. 



INTRODUCTION XXIX 

committee had a strong Republican-Tolerationist cast; historians have identi- 
fied only five Federalists among the twenty-four committee members. The 
committee submitted a draft Constitution in segments to the whole Convention 
between August 28 and September 4. Its members were aided in their efforts 
by Gov. Wolcott, who had prepared a preliminary draft that the committee ap- 
parently used extensively during its labors. 46 From September 1 through 
September 15 the delegates considered the draft Constitution by article and 
section, debating key provisions at length, and revising and reconsidering a 
number of specific arrangements. On the latter day they voted 134 to 61 to ap- 
prove the completed instrument and submit it to the state's voters for their 
consideration; historians have observed that a number of moderate Federalists 
voted in favor of the Constitution while several Republicans voted against it. 
On September 16, its work done, the Convention adjourned. 

The parameters of the Public Records series do not permit an exhaustive 
discussion of the Convention's work in this Introduction, but the documents 



46. The governor's draft is not included in the packet of materials, assembled by the 
Convention's clerks for the official record and currently housed at the Connecticut State Library. 
However, three versions of the draft can be found in the Oliver Wolcott, Jr.. Papers at the 
Connecticut Historical Society. One of these Wolcott marked as a "Rough Draft" (Box 59. folder 2). 
A revised version (Box 27, folder 14) contains a notation that "This was prepared by me and 
transmitted to the Committee of the Convention which formed the Constitution of Connecticut . It 
was designed to embrace Provisions on all our antient fundamental Statutes rea rr anged varied to 
suit existing opinions." A third version (Box 27, folder 15) appears to be an incomplete fair copy of 
the second and includes brackets around some, but not all, of the sections that the committee 
omitted from the draft that it submitted to the Convention. 

It is beyond the scope of this volume to reproduce Wolcott's drafts or to comment extensively 
on them. It is clear, however, that the committee incorporated much from his version into theirs, 
most notably in the article on the distribution of powers, many specific arrangements for the legis- 
lature and the executive, the section on impeachments, and several of the general provisions at the 
end. Wolcott did indeed "embrace Provisions" from the existing state statutes, but usually in reor- 
ganized and revised formats. However, he took his proposed Declaration of Rights not from a 
Connecticut source but almost verbatim from the Mississippi Constitution of 1817; the commit- 
tee, however, expunged a number of the sections from his draft Declaration and the Convention 
itself eliminated others. Indeed, the committee members did not follow the governor's lead slav- 
ishly, and the draft presented to the Convention is very much their own document. For example, 
historian Neil Hamilton has noted that Wolcott's proposals envisioned a much greater degree of 
public support for religion than the committee was prepared to endorse: "Oliver Wolcott," pp. 
403-4. Among other significant items that the committee omitted were Wolcott's provisions for 
two meetings per year of the General Assembly (an arrangement that the governor again supported 
during the Convention itself), an elaborate nomination process for senators, a separate section on 
the militia, specific provisions organizing the lower levels of the court system and providing for a 
court of chancery, additional suffrage provisions, and a number of general provisions, including one 
stating that chattel "Slavery shall never be permitted" in Connecticut. 



XXX INTRODUCTION 

reproduced below should provide the basis for further analysis. They include a 
literal transcription of the Convention's Journal, supporting documents pre- 
served in the Connecticut State Archives, and a transcription of the debates as 
they were reported in two "families" of newspapers, one associated with the 
Federalists and the other with the reform coalition. 47 The following pages sum- 
marize the salient issues addressed by the Convention, the positions taken by 
prominent spokesmen, and the central changes that the new Constitution made 
in the state's governmental structure. However, they are no substitute for a 
thorough reading of the Convention's documents, as well as the extensive com- 
mentary found in the public prints, by those who want fully to understand the 
range of constitutional issues in play during the summer of 1 8 1 8 and their spe- 
cific institutional ramifications. Complete comprehension of the changes that 
took place during this era would require an article-by-article comparison of the 
provisions of the new Constitution with the colonial Charter and pre- 1818 stat- 
ute law as well as a consideration of the thorough revision of the state's laws 
that the adoption of the Constitution set in motion during the years that fol- 
lowed. That revision involved specific acts fine-tuning governmental 
arrangements beginning in October 1818. an 1820 law repealing a number of 
statutory provisions found inconsistent with the new Constitution, and. finally, 
a thorough revision of the state statute book, adopted by the General Assembly 
in a blanket act in 1821. 48 

(1) A Written Constitution. The most fundamental constitutional change 
made in 1818 was the decision to adopt a formal, written constitution drawn up 
by a convention elected specifically for that purpose and ratified by the people. 
In doing so. Connecticut joined the American constitutional mainstream, 
where those procedures had become the norm in other American states during 
the Revolutionary era and were fully embodied in the U.S. Constitution. 49 The 



47. A description of these texts and our methods for presenting them can be found in the 
Preface to this volume: also useful for understanding the Convention's work is the comparison 
between the initial draft of the Constitution and the final document found in Horton. "Annotated 
Debates." pp. 85-101. 

48. The changes in 1 8 19 and 1 820 will be documented in the next volume of this series: the revised 
statutes were published as Tlie Public Statute Laws of the State of Connecticut (Hartford. 1821). 

49. A survey of the voluminous secondary literature on early American constitution-making is 
beyond the scope of this Introduction, but milestones include Gordon S. Wood. The Creation of the 
American Republic, 1776-1787 (Chapel Hill, 1969): Willi Paul Adams. The First American 
Constitutions: Republican Ideology and the Making of the State Constitutions in the Revolutionary- 
Era (Chapel Hill. 1980): Donald S. Lutz. Popular Consent and Popular Control: Whig Political 
Theory in the Early State Constitutions (Baton Rouge, 1980): Marc W. Kruman. Between Authority 
and Liberty: State Constitution Making in Revolutionary America (Chapel Hill. 1997); and Laura J. 
Scalia, America's Jeffersonian Experiment: Remaking State Constitutions, 1820-1850 (DeKalb, 



INTRODUCTION XXXI 

ideas behind this basic principle were affirmed in the new Constitution's Pre- 
amble, which declared that the people "ordain and establish the following 
constitution and form of civil government," and in the second section of the 
Declaration of Rights, which stated that "all political power is inherent in the 
people, and all free governments are founded on their authority, and instituted 
for their benefit." 50 Despite the fact that a number of specific arrangements in 
the new frame of government amounted to little more than the translation into 
constitutional form of statutes already in effect, 51 the writing and ratification of 
the new Constitution was a major departure for the state. It represented a sig- 
nificant transformation in thinking from an older, British-derived vision of a 
constitution as an evolving set of charters, legislative statutes, and other prece- 
dents, and the new American conception of a constitution as a clearly-defined 
governmental framework written by a specially-elected body of the people's 
delegates which established and controlled the powers of the government. 52 

An early exchange during the Convention on August 26 between John 
Treadwell, the Federalist ex-governor and defender of the old order, and James 
Stevens, the Republican delegate who introduced the motion to write a consti- 
tution, set out the core positions. Treadwell contended that Connecticut's 
Fundamental Orders of 1639, as incorporated into the Charter of 1662, formed 
a true constitution, which "has existed for nearly two centuries; and which has 
secured to the people peace, harmony, and prosperity." "[SJupreme power," he 
argued, was "vested in the freemen and legislature," and these arrangements 
had been "approved by the people." In response to this traditional Federalist ar- 
gument, implicitly based on the idea of an evolving constitution incorporating 
legislative statutes and legal precedents, Stevens spoke to the importance of a 
written constitution. Conceding that the state had generally done well under 
the old arrangements, Stevens contended that this was not enough: the colonial 
charter became a "dead letter" with American Independence, "the people are 
the only true sovereigns, and they have never delegated the power," and "legis- 
latures have never had a right to make a constitution." 53 In making such 



II., 1999). For an analysis of these issues in a pivotal American state, see Douglas M. Arnold, A 
Republican Revolution: Ideology and Politics in Pennsylvania, 1776-1790 (New York, 1989); a 
good recent discussion for Connecticut is Besso, "Constitutional Development." 

50. All references in this Introduction to the final Constitution, reproduced below, pp. 327-39, 
are by article and section rather than by page number. 

51. See the comment above, p. xxix(n), on Gov. Wolcott's draft constitution. 

52. This transformation is a major theme of Besso, "Constitutional Development." 

53. When discussing the convention's debates, we do not directly reference specific motions 
and speeches, but rather provide dates within the narrative to direct readers to the relevant sections 
of the Convention's Journal and debates. 



XXX11 INTRODUCTION 

arguments, Stevens and his allies affirmed not only the new American consti- 
tutional consensus, but the position that many Connecticut Republicans had 
been taking for almost twenty years. Although a number of Federalist dele- 
gates to the Convention seem to have conceded that a new constitution would 
be written, the traditional position articulated by Treadwell and his allies 
clearly still had power among their constituency, and certainly provided the 
basis for many of the popular votes against the new Constitution during the fall 
ratification process. In regard to this issue, the considerable variation in indi- 
vidual opinion should be noted: old Republican Alexander Wolcott in this 
instance agreed with Treadwell that a written constitution was not necessary, 
since the present government had a popular base. 

(2) Declaring Fundamental Rights. Another way in which Connecticut 
joined the American consensus in 1818 was by including a Declaration of 
Rights as the first article of the Constitution. As noted by historian Christopher 
Collier, Connecticut did have a statement of rights confirming many traditional 
Anglo-American liberties as part of its political arrangements in the colonial 
and early republican periods. 54 However, this statement had been confirmed 
and enacted by the legislature and was thus theoretically subject to the same 
objections that the reformers made to the state's traditional constitution. Con- 
temporaries and scholars have noted that the Connecticut's 1818 Declaration 
of Rights was based on the one adopted by Mississippi in 1817. Gov. Wolcott 
had in fact included the Mississippi declaration almost verbatim in his draft, 
and the committee retained twenty-three of Mississippi's twenty-nine arti- 
cles. 55 But these similarities should not eclipse the fact that most of the specific 
rights guaranteed by Mississippi and Connecticut had been embodied in other 
state constitutions during the Revolutionary era, beginning with Virginia in 
1776, as well as in the federal Bill of Rights; thus, Wolcott and the drafting com- 
mittee did not go as far astray geographically as the might appear on the surface. 

The Convention's proceedings on September 1 echoed earlier American 
discussions about the constitutional necessity of a bill of rights. Defenders of 
the old order, including John Treadwell, Aaron Austin, Stephen Mix Mitchell, 
and Jesse Root, argued that such constitutional guarantees were necessary only 
in cases where political power was vested in monarchy or aristocracy and not 



54. Christopher Collier, "The Connecticut Declaration of Rights before the Constitution of 
1818: A Victim of Revolutionary Redefinition," Connecticut Law Review, 15 (1982), 87-98; the 
most recent iteration of these rights can be found in Stat. Conn., 1808, p. 24. 

55. Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 240, 240n. For the Mississippi Declaration of Rights, 
see Thorpe, Constitutions, IV, 2033-34; see above, p. xxix(n), for Wolcott's use of the Mississippi 
document. Horton, "Annotated Debates," pp. 16n, 102-4, provides useful observations and a 
comparison of the Connecticut draft and the Mississippi declaration. 



INTRODUCTION XXX111 

directly dependent on the people through frequent elections. Republican Alex- 
ander Wolcott, like populist Republican writers including "Judd," came to a 
similar position from a somewhat different point of view, stating that the Dec- 
laration would be an infringement of the power of the legislature, the branch of 
government most directly dependent on the people. Proponents of a written 
declaration did not fully engage in this general debate, perhaps because they 
considered the point already determined by discussions elsewhere in the 
United States: the dependence of state legislatures on popular elections did not 
preclude the infringement of rights by potentially "tyrannical" majorities in 
the states; the limitations on the powers of Congress found in the U.S. Consti- 
tution did not remove the need for explicit written protection of the people's 
rights from federal infringements. 

The Convention's consideration of the draft Declaration led to some small 
adjustments in language and substance, fully documented in the proceedings 
reproduced below under September 1,2, 11, and 15. The Convention also ex- 
punged two of the draft sections, originally numbered 5 and 22, dealing with 
freedom of expression and emigration. This left twenty-one articles in the final 
Declaration of Rights. A few of the other sections were the subject of signifi- 
cant debate and comment, most notably the articles relating to freedom of 
speech and the press and the subordination of the military to the civil power, 
but were retained un-amended in the final version. In addition, the delegates 
engaged in a serious debate about the two articles dealing with religion, which 
is discussed below in conjunction with Article VII of the Constitution. On Sep- 
tember 1, Alexander Wolcott delivered a lengthy set of observations on 
specific provisions; while valuable for understanding the range of opinion at 
play, Wolcott's observations had little effect on the final outcome. In a signifi- 
cant footnote, Stephen Mix Mitchell on September 2 proposed an amendment 
reserving all non-enumerated rights to the people. Similar in spirit to the Ninth 
Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, the proposed amendment was undoubt- 
edly intended to prevent the explicit naming of certain rights to justify the 
infringement of others that were not named. The Convention tabled Mitchell's 
motion without debate. Other attempted amendments and additions are docu- 
mented in the records reproduced below. 

(3) Distribution of Powers. The second article of the proposed Constitution 
provided for the division of the government into "three distinct departments, 
and each of them confided to a separate magistracy" — legislative, executive, 
and judicial. Connecticut's legal and constitutional history had witnessed a 
long-term process by which the General Assembly, while remaining all-pow- 
erful in theory and often in practice, had gradually parceled out many routine 
functions to other parts of the government, particularly the judiciary. The 



XXXIV INTRODUCTION 

proper allocation and separation of powers had been a concern of both Repub- 
licans and Federalists in the years before the Convention. Republicans, for 
example, had long criticized the established system for combining different 
governmental functions in the Council, where the governor was only one 
among equals rather than a fully-independent executive, and many Federalists, 
including Chief Judge Zephaniah Swift, had contended that the judiciary was 
overly dependent on the legislature. 56 

In the Convention's debates on September 2 and 4, Robert Fairchild and 
Nathan Smith observed how in practice a gradual separation of powers and 
functions had already taken place in Connecticut, and noted that the arrange- 
ments provided in this article had become standard constitutional practice in 
the United States, having been adopted in other states and in the U.S. Constitu- 
tion; Smith emphasized the importance of formally and "permanently" 
embodying such arrangements in a written constitution. In response, John 
Treadwell expressed nostalgia for the old system, where the governor had been 
"a constituent part of the Council," and urged careful consideration of the 
matter. The committee's draft included a second section prohibiting members 
of any department from exercising the powers belonging to another except 
when explicitly permitted by the Constitution; this provision was struck on 
September 1 1 on a motion of Henry Terry without recorded debate. Perhaps 
the inclusion in the tenth article of the Constitution of a provision prohibiting 
various state and national officeholders from sitting in the General Assembly 
was seen as at least partially addressing this issue. 

(4) The Legislature. Article III of the Constitution defined the structure and 
functions of the General Assembly. The delegates considered the third article 
in depth during sessions on September 2, 4, 5, 7, and 8; they made a minor ad- 
justment and revisited a few contentious matters on September 12, 14, and 15, 
but defeated attempts at major amendment. The drafting committee retained 
Connecticut's two-house structure, but, following what was now the standard 
American practice, renamed the upper house the Senate and removed the gov- 
ernor and lieutenant governor from that body, presumably to better embody the 
principle of separation of powers. In another significant change, the draft re- 
duced the number of annual legislative elections and sessions from two to one, 
although it retained the system of alternating them between Hartford and New 
Haven. The committee also eliminated the old two-stage process of nomina- 
tion and election for the upper house. The Convention made only a few major 



56. See S.R., XVIII, xx. For a discussion of the separation of powers issue in the Convention 
and the positions taken against full separation by both traditional Federalists and some 
Republicans, see Collier, "Constitutional Revolution of 1897," pp. 41^42. 



INTRODUCTION XXXV 

changes in the committee's draft of this article, both relating to the basis of rep- 
resentation in the branches of the legislature. 

Although the House of Representatives under the new Constitution ended up 
closely resembling the House as it was constituted under the established system, 
the matter was of considerable concern to the delegates. The drafting committee 
initially proposed that representation be based on the current arrangements, 
under which towns had either one or two representatives, but gave the Assembly 
the power to reduce the number as long as each town had at least one representa- 
tive; the latter provision was defeated, with language substituted on September 
15 restricting new towns to one representative only and making any reductions 
dependent on the consent of the towns themselves. During the Convention, del- 
egates debated proposals ranging from fully proportional representation by 
population to various arrangements by which towns could be granted up to two 
representatives according to various demographic measures, but were unable 
to reach agreement about either general principles or specific numbers. In the 
debate, delegates made important arguments about such matters as the tradi- 
tional corporate rights and privileges of the towns, whether representation 
needed to reflect changing population patterns in the state, and the comparative 
authority of the Convention or the legislature to set the number of representa- 
tives. Unable to reach accord about more basic change, the Convention 
retained the old system of town representation in the House. Despite continu- 
ing population shifts in the state and further calls by Republican leaders for 
proportional representation, fundamental change did not take place until 1965, 
when the revised state Constitution provided for the districting of the state in 
accordance with principle of "one person, one vote," recently affirmed in im- 
portant decisions by the U.S. Supreme Court. The 1818 Convention's 
commitment to the continuing centrality of the towns to the state's political 
system appeared later in the Constitution as well, when it confirmed (Article 
X, Section 2) that the towns would continue to be the centers of local govern- 
ment, choosing their selectmen and police officers annually. 

Following a similar pattern, the new Senate ended up, like the old Council, 
consisting of twelve members elected at large in the state. This arrangement, 
like those for the House, was subject to considerable debate and discussion. 
The drafting committee initially proposed that the legislature be empowered to 
increase the number of senators from twelve up to twenty-one and district the 
state for senatorial elections after the next U.S. census. This proposal was de- 
feated, as were various solutions proposed by Republican delegates Pierpont 
Edwards, Robert Fairchild, and Moses Warren to increase the number of sena- 
tors provided in the draft article, district immediately, or provide more precise 
constitutional guidance to the legislature for eventual districting. During the 



XXX VI INTRODUCTION 

debate the delegates compassed several issues similar to those raised in regard 
to the House, giving particular attention to whether this was ultimately a con- 
stitutional or a legislative question. Senatorial districting was finally 
authorized a decade later by constitutional amendment. 57 

Although the Convention retained much traditional practice in regard to 
representation, the records below document the defeat of rear-guard actions by 
old-line Federalists John Treadwell and John McClellan to retain two arrange- 
ments that had been central to the organization of the upper legislative house 
under the old system: the inclusion of the governor and lieutenant governor in 
that body and the two-stage nomination and election process for its members. 
A large majority of the Convention was unwilling to reinstate these established 
practices, and Treadwell's proposal about the election process elicited a spir- 
ited response by Pierpont Edwards on September 8, reported extensively in the 
Republican and Tolerationist newspapers but not in the Federalist journals, 
about the need to make fundamental changes in the political system. In addi- 
tion, delegates debated other significant matters. The proposed reduction of 
legislative sessions from two to one a year and the consequent reduction of the 
number of elections to the lower house generated commentary about the vir- 
tues of frequent elections, always claimed by Federalist traditionalists as 
embodying the popular nature of the old system, versus economies to be 
gained by having only one session per year. On September 4, the provision was 
defeated on a tie-breaking vote by Gov. Wolcott, only to be reinstated on Sep- 
tember 8 after a more extensive debate on the array of issues involved. The 
opening of all legislative debates to the public, including those in the upper 
house,"" 8 generated some nostalgia on the part of Federalist John McClellan for 
the old system of closed doors for Council sessions. It was countered by traditional 
Republican arguments for legislative proceedings being fully open to the people. 
As in other parts of the Constitution, the Convention made some small adjust- 
ments in language, recorded in the documents below, but not discussed here. 

(5) The Executive. Article IV of the Constitution organized the executive 
department. The Convention considered the article on September 3, 8, and 9, 



57. Loomis and Calhoun, Judicial and Civil History, p. 107. Historian Alan Brownsword has 
argued that some Republicans opposed districting in 1818. despite the fact that it was part of their 
long-term program, because of short-term considerations: their large voting majorities in New 
London and Fairfield Counties had offset smaller Federalist majorities in other counties in recent 
state-wide votes, an advantage that would be lost if the state was districted. Brownsword, "Political 
Afterthoughts," p. 8. 

58. The proceedings of the House of Representatives were already open to the public; the 
Assembly at its May session had made the initial move to open the proceedings of the Council: 
above, p. xxii, and below, pp. 44-45, 44n. 



INTRODUCTION XXXV11 

and made minor adjustments on September 15. Compared to the debates over 
the legislature and the judiciary, the exchanges, at least as reported in the news- 
papers, were relatively minor, and most of the changes made to the 
committee's draft seem to have been in the realm of fine tuning. Despite pre- 
dictable objections from John Treadwell on September 3 and 9, the 
Convention's majority continued to endorse the removal of the governor from 
the upper house. The Convention also took additional steps, although limited 
ones, to make the executive more independent of the Assembly, most notably 
the grant of a modest veto power. Unlike the old system, the governor was 
given independent authority to send back to the legislature bills of which he did 
not approve, but this could be overridden by a simple majority vote of both legis- 
lative houses; the delegates made some alterations clarifying specific procedures 
before adopting the version found in the final Constitution. Despite such 
changes in function, Connecticut's governor had more limited powers than the 
executive in other states, and, in a case noted in the next paragraph, the Conven- 
tion further reduced his powers from those provided in the committee's draft. 

The second section of the article, establishing mechanisms for the election 
of the governor, took the task of counting the votes sent in by the towns out of 
the hands of joint legislative committees and gave the responsibility to the state 
treasurer, secretary, and controller; this was similar to arrangements that had 
already been made for elections to the Senate in Article III. After several 
amendments were attempted, the Convention adopted a revised version of this 
section introduced by James Lanman clarifying a number of procedures. The 
delegates also reworked section 10, removing the governor's power of granting 
pardons in capital cases, which had been included in the committee's draft. 
Section 20, dealing with the appointment of sheriffs, represented a significant 
change. These officials were now to be appointed by the Assembly and were to 
hold office for a three-year term. Previously, they were appointed by the gover- 
nor and Council with an unspecified tenure, but which in practice was on good 
behavior; these arrangements had been subject to debate at the May 1818 ses- 
sion. 59 John Treadwell and Henry Terry proposed unsuccessful amendments 
that would have placed the appointment of sheriffs in the hands of the governor 
(and in Terry's case the Senate); these attempts to retain vestiges of the old 
system were thus lost. The delegates did, however, adopt a motion proposed by 
Gideon Tomlinson to provide for removal of sheriffs by the Assembly and the 
filling of vacancies by the governor. The appointment and duties of sheriffs 
were subject to additional fine tuning at the 1819 legislative session. A telling 
exchange on another matter occurred over the explicit statement that the 



59. Below, p. 106n. 



XXXV111 INTRODUCTION 

governor would be captain general of the militia, "except when called into the 
service of the United States." On September 3, John Treadwell, certainly with 
memories of the militia disputes during the War of 1 8 1 2, objected to this provi- 
sion, but Timothy Pitkin countered that the language did nothing more than 
recognize the U.S. Constitution as supreme law of the land. Other provisions 
of this article, apparently uncontroversial, maintained the existing state offices 
of secretary, treasurer, and controller in much the same form as they had ex- 
isted under the old arrangements. 

(6) The Judiciary. The fifth article of the Constitution concerned the judi- 
ciary. Although the final version differed little from that prepared by the 
drafting committee, the article was subject to extensive debate on September 9 
and 10, with further discussion on September 14 and 15. The central issue was 
judicial tenure — whether judges of the Superior Court and the Supreme Court 
of Errors were to hold their positions on good behavior or on some other, more 
limited basis. This matter saw an apparent reversal of the Convention's usual 
partisan divisions over the necessity of basic constitutional reform. Echoing 
earlier arguments by Chief Judge Zephaniah Swift, many Federalists, includ- 
ing traditionalists John Treadwell and Aaron Austin, supported the drafting 
committee's proposal to establish tenure in these high judicial offices on the 
basis of good behavior. This issue had been the subject of extensive debate and 
commentary for years, as critics of the old arrangements, which included many 
Federalists, argued that annual appointment made the judges overly-dependent 
on the legislature, 60 despite the fact that, in practice, the legislature usually re- 
appointed judges for multiple and successive terms. Some scholars have 
observed that the position taken at the Convention by Federalists in favor of a 
more independent judiciary might have flowed from the fact that by 1818 their 
party had lost control of the legislature and governorship and hoped to perpetu- 
ate their influence by securing the tenure of the current Federalist judges. 61 This 
factor might indeed have had some influence, but the longer-term Federalist cri- 
tique of the judiciary developed by Swift and others should not be forgotten. 

The most extensive exchanges in the Convention occurred over Alexander 
Wolcott's proposal to remove the language providing for tenure on good be- 
havior for high court judges, which in effect would have continued the 
established procedure of annual legislative appointments. The issue clearly en- 
gaged other Republicans, as Moses Warren, James Lanman, James Stevens, 
and later Wolcott himself, proposed amendments that would have placed dif- 
ferent kinds of limitations on the judges' tenure. Alexander Wolcott initially 



60. See S.R., XVIII, xx, xli-xlii; above, p. xxvii. 

61 . Horton, "Annotated Debates," p. 62n. 



INTRODUCTION XXXIX 

defended the state's "former practice" regarding judicial tenure in much the 
same terms as Treadwell and Austin had urged the retention of the old arrange- 
ments regarding the governor and the Council. Other speakers pointed out an 
apparent inconsistency between the position Wolcott had taken in 1804, when 
the Republicans had argued for judicial independence, and the stance that he 
was taking in 1818. In this regard, it is useful to note Wolcott's rejoinder that 
times had changed: with the Republicans no longer in the position of an embat- 
tled opposition, as they had been in the earlier years of the century, the issue of 
judicial independence was no longer as compelling. Wolcott made several im- 
passioned pleas for keeping the judiciary closely dependent on the people's 
representatives through annual appointments. Henry Terry, Nathan Smith, and 
Calvin Butler, however, argued at length in favor of tenure on good behavior to 
secure the judges' independence from undue legislative influence, in accor- 
dance with "the opinion of the most eminent jurists" and precedents in the 
majority of other American states and in the U.S. Constitution. As in a number 
of other cases, the Convention adopted what had become widespread practice 
in the United States, endorsing tenure on good behavior. Their defeat on this 
issue might have helped to persuade several Republicans, including Alexander 
Wolcott and James Stevens, to vote against the final Constitution. 

Despite the Convention's overall commitment to separating the branches of 
government and the extensive criticism of judicial dependence on the legisla- 
ture during the preceding years, it is important to note that the state judiciary 
remained quite dependent on the Assembly under the new constitutional ar- 
rangements. The delegates allowed the legislature extensive authority to define 
the powers and jurisdiction of the various components of the court system, 
much as the Federal Convention of 1787 had left such authority in the hands of 
the U.S. Congress. This led to a number of acts making specific arrangements 
for various levels of the court system, later in 1818 at the October session and 
over the next few years; in the process, many pre-1818 practices were re- 
tained. 62 Although the issue of the number of Superior Court judges had arisen 
during earlier legislative debates, with Republican speakers arguing for a re- 
duction, 63 Article V was silent about the matter, leaving it to the legislature, 
although the Convention's Journal does record an unsuccessful attempt by Re- 
publican Gideon Tomlinson to constitutionally limit the total number of high 
judges to five. In fact, the Assembly did reduce the number in October 1 8 1 8. It is 
important to note that the new Constitution, while granting good behavior tenure 



62. For the October 1818 action, see below, pp. 359-60, 359n; measures in 1819 and 1820 will 
be documented in the next volume of this series. 

63. See S.R., XVIII, xlii. 



xl INTRODUCTION 

to the judges of the higher courts, subject to various provisions for impeachment 
and removal as defined in the fifth article, maintained the system of annual legis- 
lative appointments for all other judges and the justices of the peace. The 
Convention did, however, adopt one additional reform, proposed at earlier legis- 
lative sessions, setting seventy as an explicit age limit forjudges and justices. 

(7) Voting Qualifications. The Convention discussed the sixth article of the 
draft Constitution, dealing with the qualifications of electors, on September 10 
and 14. Although it does not appear to have been the subject of major debate, 
various instances of fine tuning are recorded in the documents reproduced 
below. The article confirmed in its first section that all who had previously 
been admitted as freemen of the state would be electors. The crucial second 
section incorporated provisions from the law adopted at the May 1818 session, 
which had opened the franchise to twenty-one year old white males who paid 
taxes or served in the militia, but retained the restrictions on voting by people 
of color and women. 64 Federalist Stephen Mix Mitchell made an unsuccessful 
effort to have the words "white male" removed, but there is no record of 
debate. This section of the Constitution included language not found in the 
May legislation to ensure that those who had a freehold estate valued at seven 
dollars were also entitled to vote, presumably even if they did not pay taxes or 
serve in the militia, a continuing property qualification for those adult white 
males who did not qualify under the other provisions; it also made more pre- 
cise how militia service would be defined and extended the town residence 
requirement from four to six months. During the Convention's consideration 
of the section, the phrase "who shall have gained a settlement in this State" was 
added, presumably to ensure that migrants who were not legally settled as resi- 
dents in a town could not exercise the vote. This reaffirmed the centrality of 
town residence in confirming full rights of citizenship. 

In a significant action, the Convention struck down a motion by John 
Treadwell to remove the militia qualification, an amendment that would have 
prevented a number of non-taxpaying white men from voting. In sum, Article 
VI, like the May 1818 act that preceded it, represented an important move in 
the direction of full suffrage for adult white males, a growing trend throughout 
the United States during this period, as many states eliminated their property 
qualifications. 65 The article also confirmed that all voting was to be by written 
ballot for state officers and members of the General Assembly. This been a 
central issue for the Republicans in their opposition to the "Stand-Up Law," 



64. See above, pp. xvii-xix, and below, pp. 36, 36n. 

65. Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, p. 252; in general, see Williamson, American Suffrage, 
esp. pp. 185-90. 



INTRODUCTION xli 

repealed in October 1817. 66 Also of considerable significance was the provi- 
sion that the selectmen and town clerk should determine voter qualifications. 
This superseded legal provisions that involved members of the "civil author- 
ity," which included justices of the peace, assistants (members of the old 
Council), and judges from the process of admitting electors. Republicans had 
earlier denounced this and related electoral practices as giving undue influence 
to individuals who stood to benefit from state elections, and this constitutional 
provision, in conjunction with a law passed at the October 1818 session, put re- 
sponsibility for admitting electors and counting votes squarely on officials 
chosen directly by the local communities. The October session also passed 
other laws bringing specific electoral procedures in line with the general ar- 
rangements contained in the Constitution. 67 

(8) Religion. The relationship between government and religion had, of 
course, been a fundamental public issue during the years leading up to the Con- 
stitutional Convention, but the Assembly had taken little concrete action. The 
Federalists' attempt to placate the dissenters in October 1816 with a distribu- 
tion of funds to all Protestant sects had failed to save their political position or 
to reconcile opponents to the Standing Order, but even after the Tolerationists 
came to power they were unable immediately to effect major change. Part of 
this stemmed from the moderation of Gov. Wolcott, whose initial statements 
on the matter in May 1817 were very measured. Moderation and caution seems 
also to have motivated reformers later at that same session, when they held a 
bare majority in the House of Representatives and the Council was still in Fed- 
eralist hands; the small reforms that they made in the certificate system were 
probably as far as they could go at the time. Even with the Tolerationist coali- 
tion in complete control of the government at the May 1818 session, the 
reformers hesitated from taking any decisive legislative steps, probably be- 
cause they sensed that such a fundamental and contentious issue as the 
relationship between church and state should be left to a constituent conven- 
tion elected by the people rather than to the state legislature. 68 



66. S.R., XVIII, xlvi, xlviii. It should be noted that the act continued to explicitly provide for 
"written" ballots; the issue of whether printed party ballots should be allowed had been debated in 
October 1817. 

67. See the earlier discussion of the role of the civil authority in electoral matters during 
debates over the repeal of the "Stand-Up Law" in October 1817: S.R., XVIII, xlvi— il; for the specific 
involvement of the civil authority in the admission of electors, see ibid., pp. 26, 26n. The defeat of 
an amendment to include the civil authority appears in the Convention's Journal for September 10. 
The October 1818 laws can be found below, pp. 360-62, 362n, 363-65, 363n; further adjustments 
in the electoral system will be documented in the next volume of this series. 

68. See S.R., XVIII, xiii-xvii, xxvi-xxviii, xl, and above, pp. xxii-xxiii. 



Xlii INTRODUCTION 

The Convention did indeed directly address the issue in two places in the 
new Constitution. 64 The first was in Sections 3 and 4 of the Declaration of 
Rights; the second was in the seventh article of the Constitution, "Of Reli- 
gion." The two provisions in the Declaration reported by the drafting 
committee had parallels to the first clause of the First Amendment to the U.S. 
Constitution: Section 3 guaranteed free exercise of religion and Section 4 
stated that no legal preference should be given to "any religious sect or mode of 
worship." The delegates engaged in a vigorous debate on September 1, reject- 
ing a proposed amendment by Baptist Asahel Morse that would have 
formulated those rights even more forcefully. However, they did accept a revi- 
sion offered by John Treadwell substituting the word "Christian" for 
"religious" in the fourth section. Although Treadwell and others declared 
themselves in favor of tolerating non-Christian religions, the status of such 
faiths, which were numerically small and politically powerless at the time, was 
not their actual focus of concern. Other delegates sensed that behind 
Treadwell's proposal was an attempt to retain a public commitment to the 
Christian religion in Connecticut. This generated a variety of arguments, docu- 
mented in the debates reproduced below, dealing with such issues as whether 
there should be a religious test for office, if there should be complete institu- 
tional separation of church and state, or whether some elements of the old 
ecclesiastical system should be retained. In the course of the debate Treadwell 
and his allies voiced an evident nostalgia for the old Puritan conception of a 
strong institutional linkage between religion, government, and society, while 
Alexander Wolcott and Baptist and Methodist spokesmen like Morse and 
Daniel Burrows generally advocated separation. Other delegates were in be- 
tween. The fourth section of the Declaration seems confused from a twenty- 
first century perspective, since the clause as revised, no doubt intended to pro- 
mote equality among Christian denominations, would do nothing theoretically 
to prevent the state government from giving preference to a non-Christian reli- 
gion. Despite this ambiguity, the reference to Christianity was not removed 
until the constitutional revision of 1965. 



69. In addition to the general works on the Convention cited above, p. xxviii(n), two other 
studies contain valuable information about the religious provisions of the Constitution: Greene, 
Religious Liberty, pp. 484-92, and McLoughlin, New England Dissent, II, 1052-59. McLoughlin, 
in particular, provides a sophisticated analysis of intellectual and political cross-currents. Some 
minor entrances of religion into the Convention's proceedings are also documented below: see, for 
example, an unsuccessful motion to substitute "Sabbath" or "Lord's day" for "Sunday" in the fourth 
article of the Constitution on September 3 and an unsuccessful attempt to prohibit clergymen from 
holding public office on September 4. 



INTRODUCTION xliii 

The Convention's major discussion of the crucial seventh article took place 
on September 11. According to nineteenth-century historian J. Hammond 
Trumbull, this article was drawn up by Gideon Tomlinson and Joshua Stow, 
two Republicans who served on the drafting committee, and who were respec- 
tively a moderate Congregationalist and a freethinker. 70 The draft provisions 
affirmed the rights of conscience, stated that no person could be compelled by 
law to belong to a religious association, provided that each denomination of 
Christians should have equal rights and powers to maintain their churches by a 
tax on their members, and stated that persons choosing to leave their current 
denomination would not be liable for its future expenses. These provisions, ac- 
cording to historian William McLoughlin, although they continued the public 
authorization of church financing and required a form of certification for an in- 
dividual's withdrawal from a congregation, "essentially . . . removed the core 
from the established or privileged position given to the Congregational parish 
system" and confirmed the principle of voluntary membership (or non-mem- 
bership) in churches. 71 

In the debates on the draft, documented below, Federalist, Republican, Tol- 
erationist, and dissenting spokesmen continued to express the varying 
viewpoints that emerged in the discussion of the religious provisions of the 
Declaration of Rights. John Treadwell and other traditionalists continued to 
express fears in debate that the new arrangements would "dissolve all ecclesi- 
astical societies in the State" by undermining their corporate legal and 
financial status. It is arguable that nothing in the draft actually constituted such 
a threat, as Joshua Stow contended in debate. Although they were unconvinced 
by Treadwell's suggestion that the dominant denomination in each locality be 
established, with members of minority churches given the right to withdraw by 
certificate, the Convention attempted to placate traditionalists by adopting two 
amendments to the first section of the article, proposed by Nathaniel Terry on 
September 15; one provided that persons would remain members of their cur- 
rent congregation until they separated and the second indicated that church 
society taxes could be laid only by a majority of legal society voters. As scholar 
Norman L. Stamps has observed, "the purpose of these amendments was to 
continue the old ecclesiastical societies and to secure their legal rights and 
privileges as corporate bodies" — if not as holders of additional privileges as a 
legally established church — and they probably helped rally support for the re- 
ligious clauses of the Constitution among members of the old Congregational 



70. Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, p. 55n; McLoughlin, New England Dissent, II, 
1052. 

71. McLoughlin, New England Dissent, II, 1055. 



Xliv INTRODUCTION 

societies. 72 However, it is to Treadwell's credit that on this and other issues he 
and his allies kept alive the old Federalist vision of society, government, and 
religion, directly descending from that of Connecticut's Puritan founders, in 
the process highlighting both the historical force of the old ideals and the 
extent of constitutional change that took place in 1818. 

When considering the place of religion in society and politics, it should, of 
course, be remembered that the ecclesiastical system as it actually operated in 
the early nineteenth century was not monolithic and provided mechanisms by 
which the dissenters could support their own worship; William McLoughlin 
has characterized the pre- 1818 arrangements as a "general establishment for the 
Protestant religion," with certain privileges for the Congregational churches. 
And it is also crucial to note that ideas about the centrality of religion to a just 
and moral society, even without all of the previous governmental trappings, re- 
mained a powerful force in Connecticut's public life, as the ministers and lay 
people who led the Second Great Awakening continued to argue for the con- 
nection and to create voluntary organizations to promote their religious and 
benevolent goals in the public arena. 73 Clearly, the Convention's actions in 
1818 did not end the state government's involvement with religion. Although 
an 1 820 legislative act and the revised statutes adopted by the Assembly in 1821 
indeed removed a number of specific features found incompatible with the reli- 
gious provisions of the Constitution of 18 18, 74 the revised statues contained 
laws prohibiting a wide range of activities on the Christian Sabbath, punishing 
blasphemy and obscene swearing, preventing disturbances at religious meet- 
ings, and exempting ministers from the poll and property taxes; they also 
included a statute regulating the legal and institutional affairs of religious soci- 
eties and congregations under the new order. 75 Based on this evidence, it is safe 
to say that the vast majority of the members of the Constitutional Convention 



72. Stamps, "Political Parties," p. 279. 

73. McLoughlin, New England Dissent, II, 924; Keller, Second Great Awakening; Jonathan D. 
Sassi, A Republic of Righteousness: The Public Christianity of the Post-Revolutionary New 
England Clergy (Oxford and New York, 2001). 

74. In 1 820 the Assembly found it necessary to repeal several parts of the existing statute law 
because they were inconsistent with the Constitution's general principles. For example, the 
legislators struck out those sections of the statutes that automatically assigned persons to 
ecclesiastical societies if they themselves did not make a choice and that required an individual's 
continuation of membership unless withdrawal from a society was specifically authorized by the 
Assembly or resulted from a dissenting certificate. Stat. Conn., II, 425-27; Stat. Conn., 1808, p. 
632. The overall ecclesiastical structure of the state, of which these were key components, is 
discussed in S.R., XVIII, xiii-xvii. 

75. Stat. Conn., 1821, pp. 164-65, 327, 376, 385-87, 448-49; the basic tide on religious 
societies and congregations is on pp. 430-36 



INTRODUCTION xlv 

and of subsequent state legislatures assumed that Connecticut would remain a 
Protestant Christian society and that the state government had a role to play. 
Hence, it is not surprising that the boundaries between government and religion, 
seemingly set so rigidly when the word "disestablishment" is used, would be 
open to continuing discussion and negotiation in future years, both in Connecti- 
cut and elsewhere in the United States. 76 

(9) Other Provisions. After the extensive discussion of religion on Septem- 
ber 1 1, the Convention had apparently compassed the controversial issues; the 
few proceedings published in the newspapers largely echoed those found in the 
Convention's official journal and included little more than a dry recording of 
specific actions. The delegates moved expeditiously through the remaining 
four articles of the committee's draft, which included arrangements for educa- 
tion (Article VIII), provisions for impeachment (Article IX), miscellaneous 
general provisions (Article X), and procedures for constitutional amendment 
(Article XI). The Convention confirmed two long-standing educational institu- 
tions, Yale College and the School Fund, referencing a May 1792 act 
establishing procedures for the college's administration, and amending the 
section on the School Fund to ensure that it would be "a perpetual fund" whose 
interest would be appropriated solely for "the support and encouragement of the 
public, or common schools" in the state and for no other purpose; 77 the latter pro- 
vision was probably related to earlier disputes over the use of School Fund 
money. The delegates left un-amended the four sections of Article EX, which set 
up procedures for impeachments by the House of Representatives, which would 
be tried before the Senate, and defined the crime of treason against the state. 

In Article X, the delegates fine-tuned some language relating to corpora- 
tions and clarified the tenure and powers of current state, judicial, and civil 
officers during the period between the ratification of the Constitution and the 
time that it would take effect. In addition, the Convention added a phrase to the 
fourth section prohibiting judges on the state's higher courts, in addition to 
other designated state and national officeholders, from sitting in the General 
Assembly. This further confirmed the separation of powers and functions em- 
bodied in the new Constitution; however, an attempt to make additional 
restrictions, by also prohibiting county court judges from sitting in the 
legislature, was defeated. The delegates also struck out two final sections in the 



76. An example of the continuing importance of religious issues in the law and politics can be 
found in Carol Weisbrod, "On Evidences and Intentions: 'The More Proof, the More Doubt,'" 
Connecticut Law Review, 18 (1986), 803-25. 

77. For the 1792 act on Yale, see Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 694-96; for the Assembly's recent 
actions on the School Fund, see S.R., XVIII, xxv-xxvi. 



xlvi INTRODUCTION 

draft of this article, dealing with bills for "gratuitous grant[s] of money" and 
the appointment of lower-ranking militia officers. The Convention retained the 
mechanisms for constitutional amendment that the committee proposed in its 
draft of Article XI, providing for the proposal of amendments by the House of 
Representatives, two-thirds approval by both legislative houses, and final rati- 
fication by a majority of the state's electors. Two attempts to amend, one from 
the Republican side and one from the Federalist, were defeated. Moses War- 
ren's proposal to reduce the number necessary for approval in the legislative 
houses from two-thirds to a simple majority displayed more trust in the legisla- 
tive majority than was embodied in the draft Constitution, while John 
Treadwell's motion to increase the votes necessary from the electors from a 
simple majority to two-thirds showed less faith in the majority of voters. 

During the Convention's final days, after having an opportunity to review 
the whole Constitution as revised, the delegates engaged in tests of strength on 
some major arrangements. These involved election procedures to the upper 
house, senatorial districting, the number of legislative sessions per year, the 
tenure of the high judges, and the religious sections. Although they made a few 
final adjustments, discussed in the preceding pages, they did not alter the major 
structural reforms agreed upon earlier in the Convention. Probably the most 
significant matter considered during the Convention's final days was the ma- 
jority needed to approve the Constitution. The Assembly had already decided 
that the vote would be recorded by qualified individual voters and not by the 
towns in their collective capacity. The question was what proportion would be 
necessary for approval, and the Convention continued to grapple with issues 
that had first arisen in May and that the legislators had left unresolved. 78 The 
draft resolution, proposed by Gideon Tomlinson on September 15, provided for 
ratification by a simple majority of the voters. Although extensive debates are 
not recorded, it is apparent the several delegates wished to make ratification 
more difficult, proposing unsuccessful amendments to require a three-fifths, 
four-sevenths, or five-ninths majority. As in May, specific political calculations 
undoubtedly lay behind some delegates' consideration of this matter, as they at- 
tempted to determine what formula would produce the outcome they desired. 

In accordance with provisions adopted by the Convention, the vote on ratifi- 
cation was scheduled for Monday, October 5, less than three weeks after the 
rising of the Convention. Historians have detected a number of cross-currents 
at work in the campaign and in the vote. Voters on the extremes, most notably 
old-school Federalists who wanted few changes in the state's political arrange- 
ments and Republicans who objected to specific provisions, including the 



78. See above, p. xxi. 



INTRODUCTION xlvii 

basis for representation in the legislative houses and specific arrangements re- 
garding the judiciary, appear to have opposed the proposed Constitution, while 
Tolerationists, moderate Republicans, and opponents of the old religious ar- 
rangements seem to have supported ratification. John M. Niles, the young 
populist Republican editor of the Times, while noting a number of objection- 
able arrangements in the Constitution, praised many of its core features and 
declared that "We shall support the Constitution — not because we deem it a 
party measure, and in point of fact it is not so, but because we have always con- 
sidered, and still consider, that the state was without a constitution of civil 
government, and that it is important that it should have one." 79 Federalist edi- 
tors, on the other hand, opposed the new frame of government, rehearsing their 
standard defense of the state's traditional institutions. There is evidence that 
Federalist traditionalists, particularly disturbed by the major changes proposed 
in the state's religious and constitutional order, took practical steps to organize 
themselves to oppose the ratification of the Constitution, and they undoubtedly 
carried a significant segment of the electorate with them through their public 
appeals and local connections. A small but important group of Federalists, 
however, probably won over by the arrangements for an independent judiciary, 
joined in support of the new Constitution, and such political moderates appear 
to have played a key role in winning voters in certain localities. 80 

The popular vote on ratification was very close, 13,918 for the Constitution 
to 12,364 against it, 81 underlining the importance of the Convention's rejection 
of amendments that would have required ratification by more than an absolute 
majority. If any of those provisions had been adopted, ratification would have 
failed. The votes were tallied at the October session of the Assembly, which 
declared that the new Constitution had been "ratified and approved by the 
people of this State." Gov. Wolcott accordingly issued a proclamation that the 
new frame of government was "henceforth to be observed, by all persons 
whom it doth or may concern, as the supreme law of this Stated 2 Although 
several elements of their agenda remained open for consideration, most nota- 
bly the issue of the state's taxation system, the ratification of the Constitution 
represented the capstone of the reformers' campaign. 



79. "The Constitution," Times, Sept. 22, 29, 1818. For an analysis of the Times' somewhat 
grudging support for ratification, see Pasley, Tyranny of Printers, p. 385. 

80. For secondary accounts of ratification, see Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, pp. 57- 
58; Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, pp. 258-61; Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 284-89; 
Thomas, "Politics," pp. 262-63; Brownsword, "Political Patterns," pp. 102-7. 

81. Below, p. 383. 

82. Below, pp. 382-83, 383n; the quotation from the proclamation is taken from the Mercury, 
Oct. 20, 1818. 



xlviii INTRODUCTION 

The overall significance of the constitutional changes adopted in 1818 has 
been the subject of much debate and discussion. The new Constitution was to 
some extent a moderate or even conservative instrument, since it kept much of 
the political and legal structure of the state; a major continuity was the ongoing 
centrality of the towns in the political system, but also it can also be seen in the 
continuing power of the legislature under the new arrangements. Scholar 
Norman Stamps has made an important point about the overall impact of the 
Convention's efforts to distribute powers between governmental branches: 
"The main effect of this provision . . . was to make the governor independent 
of the Council and to provide for an independent judiciary; but the legislature 
still was in a position to exercise a controlling influence and to maintain most 
of the prerogatives that it possessed before." 83 However, to emphasize only the 
continuities would slight the major changes noted by commentators at the time 
and by recent scholars: the fundamental importance of drafting a written con- 
stitution and submitting it to the voters for ratification, the inclusion of a 
declaration of rights as an explicit part of the Constitution, the commitment to 
the principle of separation of powers as embodied in three branches of govern- 
ment, and religious disestablishment. 

The relative importance of these changes has been subject to different em- 
phases over time, making it unwise to offer any kind of "definitive" assessment 
here. In their revision of the state statutes in 1821, Zephaniah Swift, Lemuel 
Whitman, and Thomas Day stated unequivocally that "the most prominent ad- 
vantages" derived from the Constitution, "are, that it divides the government 
into three branches, the legislative, the executive, and the judiciary, which are 
confided to separate magistracies; and also secures the independence of the ju- 
diciary, by a permanent appointment." 84 One hundred years later, and just as 
unequivocally, Richard Purcell wrote, in a study that has remained the standard 
historical account of the era, that "the greatest single result of the reform move- 
ment" was "the severance of the union of church and state." 85 Differences of 
emphasis between three early nineteenth-century jurists, who had grown up 
under Connecticut's old constitutional system, and a twentieth-century Catho- 
lic historian, whose attention was drawn by the growing religious and cultural 
diversity of the nation, could probably be expected. But it is also a reminder 
that people in every era will interpret the past, including its constitutional ar- 
rangements, in the light of the salient concerns of their times. 



83. Stamps, "Political Parties," pp. 259-60. Collier, "Constitutional Revolution of 1897," 
discusses the continuing dominance of the Assembly after 1818 as well as the continuation of many 
earlier arrangements in the court system. 

84. Stat. Conn., 1821, p. vii. 

85. Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, p. 262. 



INTRODUCTION 



October 1818 



After the intense political activity and controversy that surrounded the May 
1818 legislative session and the Constitutional Convention, the October meet- 
ing of the legislature was something of an anticlimax. The fall elections to the 
Assembly, held before the vote on the new Constitution, displayed the usual 
partisan divisions. 86 Since the outcome of the vote on the Constitution, held 
after the fall legislative elections, was not yet known, both parties proposed 
slates of nominees for the Council under the old system, which this time oper- 
ated without the "stand-up" clause. Voting for nominees took place, but the 
matter was moot; no record of the vote appears in the Public Records, since the 
new Constitution had replaced the Council with the Senate and eliminated the 
old nomination process for 1819 and succeeding elections. 

The reform coalition maintained a working majority at the fall legislative 
session. In his brief opening speech, Gov. Wolcott called the legislators' atten- 
tion to the need for a "revision of some of our laws, for the purpose of 
rendering them conformable to the provisions" of the new Constitution. 87 In 
accordance with this recommendation, the Assembly passed several important 
implementation acts. The Convention had left much of the actual organization 
of the judiciary to the Assembly, and the act printed below clarified several 
matters, most notably reducing the number of assistant judges of the Superior 
Court from eight to four and reconfirming the current law by which the Supe- 
rior Court judges would constitute the Supreme Court of Errors. 88 A reduction 
in the number of judges had earlier been proposed by Republican representa- 
tives at the May 1817 and May 1818 legislative sessions and in the 
Constitutional Convention. The Assembly made the change in specific person- 
nel at its 1819 session. It also altered other parts of court system over the next 
few years, making adjustments relating to the Superior Court, the Supreme 
Court of Errors, and the county courts, but in the process retaining many the 
pre-1818 arrangements. These actions will be documented in subsequent vol- 
umes of this series. 

In addition, the Assembly passed several laws at the October session relat- 
ing to the election of legislators and state officers. 89 The state's electoral 



86. For accounts of the fall 1818 elections, see Thomas, "Politics," p. 262; Brownsword, 
"Political Patterns," pp. 105-6. 

87. For party strength in the Assembly, see below, p. 342n; the governor's speech can be found 
in the Mercury, Oct. 13, 1818. For analysis of the work of the October 1818 session, see Purcell, 
Connecticut in Transition, pp. 261-62; Morse, Neglected Period, pp. 30-37. 

88. Below, pp. 359-60, 359n. 

89. Below, pp. 360-62, 360n, 363-65, 363n. 



1 INTRODUCTION 

system had been the subject of extensive debate at the 1817 legislative sessions 
and at the Convention, and the Constitution had established general guidelines 
for elections. The October 1818 acts elaborated the procedures for conducting 
elections, counting votes, and admitting electors. A significant change, related 
to a long-standing Republican grievance, was embodied in provisions allowing 
the localities themselves to determine the presiding officer at their electoral 
meetings and relying on local boards to count the votes without the participa- 
tion of the "civil authority." The Constitution had already provided in Article 
VI for the determination of qualifications of electors by such local officials. 90 
As with the court system, the Assembly continued to make adjustments in the 
electoral laws in upcoming years. In both areas, these actions confirmed the 
considerable power the legislature retained over the entire governmental 
system, even after the constitutional reforms of 1818. 

In his opening speech to the October session, Gov. Wolcott also reminded the 
legislators of the importance of attending to other parts of his reform program. 
The Assembly still had under its consideration the revision of the taxation 
system, a centerpiece of the governor's program. Although major tax reform was 
not accomplished until the 1819 and 1820 legislative sessions, the Assembly did 
enact a law lowering the assessment on polls. 91 The Assembly also passed a law 
and a resolution related to the reform of the state's poor laws, a subject of contin- 
uing concern to the governor and the legislators. 92 In other significant actions, 
the Assembly removed the section of the law imposing a penalty for transporting 
the U.S. mail on the Sabbath and repealed an 18 12 resolve granting School Fund 
Commissioner James Hillhouse extra compensation, a contentious issue related 
to the reorganization of the School Fund in 1817. 93 



Routine Business 

Like the period covered by the previous volume in this series, the year 1818 
was anything but routine in its overall political significance. The Assembly, 
however, still found time to conduct ordinary legislative business, despite the 
fact that the state's leaders focused primarily on writing and ratifying a new 
Constitution. 94 Like previous volumes of the Public Records, the pages below 



90. See the discussion of this issue above, p. xli. 

91. The assessment law is below, p. 377, 377n; see S.R.. XVIII, xxxix-xl. for the overall 
context of tax reform in these years. 

92. Below, pp. 362-63. 362n, 385-86, 386n; see above, pp. xxiv-xxvi. for a discussion of the 
context. 

93. Below, pp. 375, 375n, 384-85, 385n. 

94. This section should be read in conjunction with its companion section in S.R.. XVIII, 1-li. 



INTRODUCTION li 

include a large number of resolutions dealing with individual matters that fell 
under the legislature's purview: divorces, the disposition of the estates of 
minors and incompetents, authorizations of foreigners to hold land, individual 
cases of insolvency, and appeals from prisoners for release. The documents re- 
produced below also include routine resolutions responding to minor 
irregularities in the actions of local officials, including tax collectors. In a simi- 
lar mode, the Assembly continued to deal with the specific affairs of towns and 
local schools as the need arose. However, the Assembly felt the pressure of in- 
creased business in the expanding and diversifying society of the early 
nineteenth century. In a resolution at the May 1818 session the Assembly au- 
thorized the appointment of a joint committee at each session on petitions 
relating to turnpikes, roads, and bridges to streamline legislative business. 95 
The legislators also did some fine tuning of the legal system in May 1818, pass- 
ing acts on escheats, bail bonds, depositions, and writs. 96 In October 1818 it 
simplified some routine business by passing what was in effect a general incor- 
poration law for public libraries, allowing them to organize by lodging their 
by-laws with the state secretary. 97 

The year 1818 also saw the continuation of the Assembly's involvement in 
the economy, including sporadic action, discussed above and documented 
below, on the program that Gov. Wolcott had most fully outlined in his May 
1817 address to the legislature. Other, more routine economic matters appear 
in the following pages. The number of incorporations of manufacturing com- 
panies picked up slightly, to three in 1818 from only two in the previous two 
years; 98 this trend continued into 1819, when five were incorporated. There 
was a small surge in the number of turnpike companies incorporated, up to five 
from only two in 1816-1817, perhaps indicating an improvement in the state's 
economy following the disruptions caused by the war. 99 Economic improve- 
ment was also the object of the Assembly's increased attention to insurance at 
the October 1818 session, when it incorporated two new companies, the Ocean 
Insurance Company of New Haven and the Thames Insurance Company of 



95. Below, pp. 48, 48n. 

96. Below, pp. 34, 34n, 36-37, 39, 39n. 

97. Below, p. 376, 376n. 

98. All three were incorporated at the October 1818 session: the Mattabesac Company in 
Middletown, the Mansfield Manufacturing Company, and the Berlin Cotton Factory Company: 
below, pp. 392-99, 392n, 395n, 397n. 

99. Three were incorporated at the May 1818 session (the New Milford and Sherman Turnpike 
Company, the Wolcott and Hamden Turnpike Company, and the Granby and Barkhemstead 
Turnpike Company) and two in October (the Groton and Stonington Turnpike Company and the 
Pettipauge and Guilford Turnpike Company): below, pp. 69-71, 69n, 74-77, 75n, 77-82, 78n, 412- 
14, 412n, 415-18, 415n. 



lii INTRODUCTION 

New London, and allowed a company in Norwich to convert from marine to 
fire insurance. 100 In addition to these actions, the Assembly attended to other 
routine economic matters relating to fisheries, roads, bridges, ferries, banks, 
and already-incorporated businesses. 

As noted in the previous volume, such apparently routine business did not 
always go smoothly. Disputes continued into 1818 over the controversial af- 
fairs of the Hartford Bridge Company, the Union Company of Middletown, 
and the Dragon Turnpike Company; the newly-incorporated Granby and 
Barkhemstead Turnpike Company was also subject to local disputes. 101 As 
elsewhere in the United States, conflicts over such issues as corporate claims, 
the property rights of individuals, and the interests of the community accompa- 
nied the emergence of a dynamic and entrepreneurial economy. Such conflicts 
played out in a particularly dramatic manner in a group of resolutions and acts 
relating to a series of projects promoted by John L. Sullivan and his associates 
aimed at improving navigation on the Connecticut River through the introduc- 
tion of steamboats and the construction of locks. When the privileges 
requested by Sullivan's new group came into conflict with the claims of a 
group of previously incorporated proprietors, the Assembly moved to provide 
the newcomers with legal privileges and incentives to advance their project as 
well as leverage against the old proprietors. The formation of the Connecticut 
Steam Boat Company and earlier debates in the House of Representatives 
about the regulation of steam navigation in Connecticut's waters was as clear 
an indication as the concurrent constitutional revolution that Connecticut was 
entering a new era. 102 If the state did not become quite the economic dynamo 
as, for example, its neighbor New York, it was clearly entering an age of in- 
creased economic activity and commercial opportunity. 



100. Below, pp. 366-74, 366n, 370n, 37 In. 

101. See S.R., XVIII, li, and the references there. 

102. See below, pp. 66-67, 66n, 380-82, 380n, 399-401, 399n. 






LIST OF ACTS 



May 1818 



An act in addition to and alteration of an act entitled An act for form- 
ing and conducting the military force of this State 32 
An act in addition to an act, entitled An act relating to escheats, and 
other estates belonging to, and recovered for the use of the 
public treasury of this State 34 
An act for the relief of Bail 34 
An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act for main- 
taining and supporting the poor 35 
An act defining the qualifications of Freemen 36 
An act for opening depositions 36 
An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act to secure 

the City of New-Haven from damage by fire 37 

An act concerning incorporated Manufacturing Companies 38 

An act relating to the costs due from prisoners confined in Newgate 

prison 38 

An act relating to Incorporated Banks 39 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act relating 
to the abatement and amendments of writs, reversal of judg- 
ment, &c. 39 
An act to alter the times of holding the Court of Common Pleas in the 

County of Tolland 40 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act for con- 
stituting an[d] regulating courts, and for appointing the times 
and places for holding the same 40 

An act for the appointment of a Reporter of Judicial Decisions 40 

An act to repeal an act, entitled An act to secure the rights of parents, 

masters and guardians 41 

An act to repeal the act therein mentioned 41 



October 1818 

An act constituting and regulating courts 359 

An act relative to the election of Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, 
Senators, Members of the House of Representatives, Treasurer 
and Secretary 360 



liv LIST OF ACTS 

An act relating to the support of State paupers 362 

An act prescribing forms for the return of votes 363 

An act relative to the admission of electors 365 

An act to incorporate the Ocean Insurance Company of New-Haven 366 

An act in further addition to and alteration of An act to incorporate the 
Norwich Marine Insurance Company, and to convert the same 
into a Fire Insurance Company 370 

An act to incorporate the Thames Insurance Company at New- 
London 371 
An act to repeal part of an act, entitled an act in addition to the statute en- 
titled an act for the due observation of the Sabbath or Lord's day 375 
An act concerning Library Companies 376 
An [act] in further addition to an act entitled an act for erecting and 

continuing a sign-post in each town in this State 376 

An act regulating salaries and fees 377 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act for the direction of List- 
ers in their office and duty 377 
An act regulating Fisheries 378 
An act in addition to an act entitled an act in further addition to an act 

entitled an act for encouraging and regulating Fisheries 380 

An act to incorporate John L. Sullivan and his associates, for the pur- 
pose of constructing locks, dams, and channels, at Enfield falls 380 



At a General Assembly of the State of Connecticut, holden at Hartford 
in said State, on the second Thursday of May in the year of our Lord 
one thousand eight hundred and eighteen: 



Present 



His Excellency Oliver Wolcott, Esquire, Governour 

His Honor Jonathan Ingersoll Esqr. Lieutenant-Governour 



The Honourable Aaron Austin 
Jonathan Brace 
Elizur Goodrich 
Matthew Griswold 
Henry Champion 
Frederick Wolcott 
Roger M. Sherman 
Samuel W. Johnson 
Noah B. Benedict 
William Perkins 
Asa Chapman 
Elias Perkins 



\ 



Assistants. 1 



The Representatives from the several towns were 2 



Michael Olcott, Jonathan W. Edwards from Hartford 

Andrew Pratt, Luther Beckley from Berlin 

Enos Ives from Bristol 

Theodore Pettibone from Burlington 

Darius Moses from Canton 

Shubael Griswold, Benjamin Lyman from East-Hartford 

Abner Reed, Joel Holkins from East- Windsor 

Elam O. Potter, William Dixon from Enfield 



1 . The session ran from May 14 to June 8, 1 8 1 8: House Journal. The assistants listed here had 
been elected in May 1817; for the slate chosen in 1818, see below, pp. 5-6, 5-6n. On May 19, the 
House engaged in a debate over the expenses for the election ceremonies and refreshments at the 
opening of the legislative session: Courant, May 26, 1818; Mercury, May 26, 1818. 

2. On April 21, 1818, the Mercury stated that there would be 132 Republicans and 69 
Federalists in the House, and printed a table giving estimated party strength in each county; the 
Journal reprinted this estimate on April 28, but "[we] should not dare to vouch for the truth of it." 
Historians have agreed with the Mercury's estimate: Purcell, Connecticut in Transition, p. 232; 
Stamps, "Political Parties," p. 245. 



PUBLIC records May, 



John Mix, George Norton from Farmington 

Samuel Wells, David E. Hubbard from Glastenbury 

Zadoce Wilcox, Joseph Pinney from Granby 

Philander Humphreys, Lent Benham from Hartland 

Joel Foote from Marlborough 

Elisha Phelps, Zelotes Phelps from Simsbury 

Roswell Moore, Chester Grannis from Southington 

Elisha Gunn, Martin Sheldon from Suffield 

Ezekiel P. Belden, Levi Lusk from Wethersfield 

William Alford, Eliakim Marshall from Windsor 

Thomas Ward, Henry W. Edwards from New-Haven 

Eli Fowler, Josiah J. Linsley from Branford 

Samuel A. Foote, Silas Hitchcock from Cheshire 

Sheldon Curtiss from Derby 

James Thomson from East-Haven 

Nathaniel Griffing, Samuel Robinson from Guilford 

Amasa Bradley from Hamden 

Othniel Ives from Meriden 

Philo Bronson from Middlebury 

Benjamin Bull, Samuel B. Gunn from Milford 

Daniel Pierpont from North-Haven 

Jared Hawley from Oxford 

Curtiss Hinman from Southbury 

Abel Sanford, Elkanah Hall from Wallingford 

James M. L. Scovill, Timothy Gibbud from Waterbury 

Justus Thomas, Chauncey Tolles from Woodbridge 

Erastus Welton from Wolcott 

Henry Channing, William Stockman from New-London 

Cushing Eells, Newcomb Kinney from Norwich 

William Whiting from Bozrah 

Benjamin Trumbull, John R. Watrous from Colchester 

Joshua Tracey from Franklin 

Nathan Geer from Griswold 

Noyes Barber, Philip Gray from Groton 

Frederick Perkins from Lisbon 

Richard E. Selden, Peter Comstock from Lyme 

Oliver Comstock from Montville 

Nathan Pendleton, Stanton Hewitt from North-Stonington 

John T. Mott, John Brewster from Preston 

George Hubbard, William Randall from Stonington 

Isaac Frink from Waterford 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 

Gideon Tomlinson, Thomas F. Rowland from Fairfield 

Samuel Tweedy Junr., Zalmon Wildman from Danbury 

William Meeker from Brookfield 

Isaac Howe, Clark Sanford from Greenwich 

Abner Hyde, Samuel Wheeler from Huntington 

Nathan Seeley from New-Canaan 

Jabez Treadwell from New-Fairfield 

Gideon Botsford, Joseph B. Wheeler from Newtown 

William J. Street, Dan Taylor from Norwalk 

Billy Comstock, Aaron Sanford Junr. from Redding 

Eliphalet Brush, Jabez M. Gilbert from Ridgfield 

John Orton from Sherman 

James Stevens, Thaddeus Bell from Stamford 

David Plant, Ephraim J. Wilcoxson from Stratford 

Daniel Seeley from Trumbull 

Stephen Wheeler, Oliver C. Sanford from Weston 

Erastus Sturges from Wilton 

John Baldwin, Edmund Badger from Windham 

David Brewster, David Kyes from Ashford 

Vine Robinson from Brooklyn 

Solomon Payne, Asa Butts from Canterbury 

Asahel Kingsley from Columbia 

Joseph Prentiss from Hampton 

Shubael Hutchins, Andrew Leavins from Killingly 

Simeon M. Webster, Isaiah Loomis from Lebanon 

William Bennett, Seth Dunham from Mansfield 

Sessions Lester, Oliver Coates from Plainfield 

Pardon Kingsley, Samuel Allen 2d from Pomfret 

Dixon Hall from Sterling 

John Jacobs Junr., Elijah Nicholls Junr. from Thompson 

William Gallup from Voluntown 

John Fox, John McClellan from Woodstock 

Stephen Russell, Ephraim S. Hall from Litchfield 

John Merrills, Oliver Mills from Barkhemsted 

Nehemiah Lambert from Bethlem 

Jabez Brewster, Nathaniel Stevens from Canaan 

Asaph Pinney, Rufus North from Colebrook 

Noah Rogers, Philo Swift from Cornwall 

Julius Beach, William Stanley from Goshen 

William C. Abernethy, Uriah Hopkins from Harwington 

Abel Beach from Kent 



4 public records May, 

Aaron Austin, Asa Goodwin from New-Hartford 

Orange Merwin, Homer Boardman from New-Milford 

Nathaniel Stevens, Augustus Pettibone from Norfolk 

Calvin Butler from Plymouth 

Josiah R. Eastman from Roxbury 

Daniel Johnson, Abijah C. Peet from Salisbury 

Hezekiah Goodwin, Thomas St. John from Sharon 

Lyman Wetmore, John Gillet Junr. from Torrington 

Homer Sacket from Warren 

Daniel B. Brinsmade, Joseph Whittlesey from Washington 

Amos Baldwin from Watertown 

Matthew Adams, Riley Whiting from Winchester 

Nathan Preston, Philo Murray from Woodbury 

John Alsop, Nathan Starr Junr. from Middletown 

John Brainerd 2d, George W. Smith from Haddam 

Enoch Sage, Nehemiah Gates from Chatham 

Bridgman Guernsey, Asahel Strong from Durham 

Isaac Spencer Junr., Richard Lord from East-Haddam 

George Carter, Benjamin Hill from Killingworth 

Joseph Hill, John Stannard from Saybrook 

Eliphalet Young, Gurdon Thomson from Tolland 

Ichabod M. Warner from Bolton 

Cephas Brigham, Jasper Fitch from Coventry 

Asa Willey from Ellington 

Daniel Burrows, Simon House from Hebron 

Joseph Abbott, Reuben Chapin from Somers 

Benning Mann, Gardner Cady from Stafford 

Ingoldsby W. Crawford, Nathaniel Newell from Union 

Lemuel King from Vernon 

Daniel Glazier, Jonathan Sibley Junr., from Willington 

Gideon Tomlinson, Esquire, Speaker. 

Elisha Phelps and Samuel A. Foote, Esquires, Clerks. 3 



3. On May 19, 1818, the Courant reported that Phelps had received 84 votes for first clerk to 
42 for Jonathan W. Edwards and a scattering for other candidates; the votes for speaker and second 
clerk, the paper reported, "were in nearly the same proportion." For Tomlinson, a clerk at the 
previous session, see S.R., XVIII, 239n. Phelps (1779-1847), an 1800 graduate of Yale College, 
attorney, many-time representative from Simsbury, and prominent Republican politician, later 
served as speaker of the House, state senator, state controller, and U.S. representative. Dexter, Yale 
Biographies, V, 409-10. Foote (or Foot; 1780-1846), a Cheshire native and a 1797 Yale graduate, 
studied at Tapping Reeve's Litchfield law school. After his mercantile business in New Haven 
failed during the War of 1 81 2, he returned to Cheshire, serving as a Republican state representative 
in 1817. In succeeding years he held a number of public offices, including additional terms in the 
state legislature, a year as governor, and prominent service in the U.S. House and Senate. ANB; 
Dexter, Yale Biographies. V, 281-83. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 5 

The Honourable Aaron Austin, Jonathan Brace, Elizur Goodrich, Matthew 
Griswold, Henry Champion, Frederick Wolcott, Roger M. Sherman, Samuel 
W. Johnson, Noah B. Benedict, William Perkins, Asa Chapman and Elias 
Perkins, together with Messrs. Joel Foote, Beckley, Henry W. Edwards, 
Thomas, Channing, Hubbard, Wildman, Rowland, John Baldwin, McClellan, 
Brinsmade, Russel, Alsop, Joseph Hill, Willey and Mann, Esquires, are ap- 
pointed a committee to receive and count the votes of the freemen of this State 
returned to this Assembly, for Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, Assistants, 
Treasurer and Secretary of this State for the year ensuing; and to declare the 
persons elected to those offices respectively. 

To the Honourable General Assembly of the State of Connecticut, now in 
session, May 14th, 1818; 

The committee appointed to receive and count the votes of the freemen re- 
turned to this Assembly, for Governour, Lieutenant Governour, Assistants, 
Treasurer and Secretary, for the year ensuing, respectfully report, that they 
have discharged the duties assigned them, and find, that his Excellency, Oliver 
Wolcott is chosen Governour, and his Honor Jonathan Ingersoll, Lieutenant 
Governour for the year ensuing, and they have been declared chosen to those 
offices accordingly. 4 



4. For the significance of the April 1818 election, see above, pp. xiv-xvi. On May 19, 1818, 
the Mercury and the Courant reported the following votes: 
Governor 

Oliver Wolcott 16,432 

Scattering 2,446 

Lieutenant Governor 

Jonathan Ingersoll 14,390 

Scattering 719 

The list of assistants that follows reflects the continuing political transformation of the state, with 
eight new members giving the reformers control of the Council for the first time. Among the 
twelve elected, Frederick Wolcott was the high vote-getter with 12,472, and Webb the low with 
5,616. Mercury, May 19, 1818. Only Brace, Wolcott, Chapman, and Perkins remained from the 
previous Council, and Chapman was soon appointed a Superior Court judge. The vote had been 
subject to some political maneuvering, with four candidates who had been nominated in the fall — 
Nathan Smith, Eli Todd, John S. Cannon, and Edmond Freeman (S.R., XVIII, 240) — withdrawing 
from consideration. A Republican state committee recommended twelve names from the remain- 
ing sixteen; these did not include incumbents Brace and Perkins, who were nonetheless 
successful in the spring vote. Federalist commentators predictably criticized their opponents for 
playing politics with the official slate of nominees. Mercury, Mar. 24, 1818; Courant, Mar. 31, 
1818; Journal, Mar. 31, Apr. 7, 1818. See also Thomas, "Politics," pp. 259-60; Brownsword, 
"Political Patterns," pp. 92-93. 

For Bristol, Peters, and Lanman, leading reformers who had served as House speaker and 
clerks in 1817, see S.R., XVIII, 152n, 239n. Wells (1762-1837), a 1781 Yale graduate, had prac- 
ticed medicine in Berlin and Hartford; his alma mater gave him an honorary M.D. in 1816. A 
prominent opponent of the Federalist establishment, he later served in the Constitutional Conven- 
tion of 1818 and as a fellow of Yale Corporation. Dexter, Yale Biographies, IV, 206-7. Boardman 
(1760-1823) was a Revolutionary War veteran, New Milford merchant, and proprietor of 



6 PUBLIC records May, 

The committee also find, that the 
Honourable Jonathan Brace 
The Honourable Frederick Wolcott 
The Honourable Asa Chapman 
The Honourable Elias Perkins 

William Bristol, Esquire 
Elijah Boardman, Esquire 
David Tomlinson, Esquire 
Sylvester Wells, Esquire 
John S. Peters, Esquire 
James Lanman, Esquire 
Enoch Burrows, Esquire, and 
Peter Webb, Esquire, are chosen Assistants; 
And Thomas Day, Esquire, Secretary for the year ensuing; 

And that the Freemen of the State have not made choice of any person as 
Treasurer of the State for the year ensuing. 
All which is submitted, 

Signed by Order, Jonathan Brace. 



extensive lands in Ohio. A former Republican candidate for governor, he had most recently 
served in the state House of Representatives in 1816. Encyclopedia of Connecticut Biography, I, 
94; S.R., XVII, In, 294n. Tomlinson was a many-time representative from Oxford and a long- 
term justice of the peace in New Haven County. Burrows (d. 1852) had served several terms as 
representative for Stonington: Groton 306 Inscriptions, Cemetery 20, p. 157, CSL. Webb had 
been a representative from Windham over a decade earlier. Thomas Day's re-election as secre- 
tary, the Mercury reported (May 19, 1818), was "nearly unanimous." which was not surprising, 
since he had been included in the Tolerationist nomination: Mercury, Mar. 24, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 7 

This Assembly do appoint Isaac Spencer 2d Esquire, Treasurer of this State 
for the year ensuing. 5 

The oath prescribed by the laws of this State, for Governour, was duly ad- 
ministered to his Excellency Oliver Wolcott, now chosen Governour of this 
State; who thereupon, took his seat in this Assembly accordingly. 

The oath prescribed by the laws of this State, for Lieutenant Governour, was 
duly administered to his Honor Jonathan Ingersoll, now chosen Lieutenant 
Governour, of this State; who thereupon, took his seat in this Assembly 
accordingly. 



5. The two parties contested the election for state treasurer, with the reformers nominating 
Isaac Spencer, Jr., and Federalists rallying behind long-term incumbent Andrew Kingsbury: 
Mercury, Mar. 24, 1818; Courant, Mar. 31, Apr. 7, 1818. See also Thomas, "Politics," pp. 259-60, 
and S.R., XVIII, xxxviii. The newspapers recorded the following popular votes for treasurer, 
observing that "there are thirteen votes wanting to make a choice": 

Andrew Kingsbury 7,573 

Isaac Spencer 72 1 

Scattering 101 

[Total] 8,395 

*** 

Isaac Spencer, Jr. 8,383 

On May 19, the House appointed Isaac Spencer 2d by a vote of 103, with 78 for Kingsbury and 12 
for Isaac Spencer, Jr. These odd votes are not fully explained in the newspaper reports. Failure to 
distinguish between individuals by the use of a "Jr." or 2d" in elections and appointments was not 
an unusual occurrence, and customarily required legislative correction. That was undoubtedly a 
factor in the current situation, but partisan maneuvering might also have been involved, particu- 
larly since the initial count of popular votes was made by a committee including the old Federalist 
Council members, most of whom had been replaced by reform candidates in the spring election. 
Spencer (d. 1840) had been a Revolutionary War officer, justice of the peace for Middlesex 
County, and a probate judge for East Haddam. Over the last decade he was a many -time Republi- 
can candidate for state office, most recently for lieutenant governor, and was here rewarded for 
his long service to his party. House Proceedings of May 14, 19, June 3, 1818: Courant, May 19, 
26, June 9, 16, 1818, Mercury, May 19, 26, 1818; Franklin B. Hough, American Biographical 
Notes, Being Short Notices of Deceased Persons.. . (Albany, 1875), p. 372, and, for example, S.R., 
XVII, In, 194n; XVIII, 9, 156, 240. 



8 PUBLIC records May, 

The oath prescribed by the laws of this State, for Assistants, was duly ad- 
ministered to the 

Honourable Jonathan Brace 

Frederick Wolcott 

Asa Chapman 

Elias Perkins 

William Bristol 

Elijah Board man 

David Tomlinson 

Sylvester Wells 

John S. Peters 

James Lanman 

Enoch Burrows and 

Peter Webb, Esquires, now chosen Assistants for this State; 
who thereupon, took their seats in this Assembly accordingly. 

The oath prescribed by the laws of this State for Treasurer, was duly admin- 
istered to Isaac Spencer 2d now chosen Treasurer of this State. 

The oath prescribed by the laws of this State, for Secretary, was duly admin- 
istered to Thomas Day, Esquire, now chosen Secretary of this State. — 

This Assembly do appoint Elisha Colt, Esquire, Controller of Public Ac- 
counts of this State for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Sylvester Wells and Michael 
Olcott, Esquire, together with the Controller of Public Accounts, to adjust and 
audit the Accounts of the Treasurer of this State to the 30th day of September 
next, and report make to the next General Assembly. 

This Assembly do appoint Messrs. Martin Sheldon, Reuben Barker and Jona- 
than Pettibone Junior, Overseers of New-Gate Prison, for the year ensuing. 6 



6. The Assembly appointed three new overseers, replacing the long-standing trio of John 
Treadwell, Pliny Hillyer, and Samuel Woodruff (S.R., XVI, 8; XVII, 300; their most recent 
reappointment, in May 1817, is documented in the Archives, cited below). Gov. Wolcott had called 
attention to the prison in October 1817; the legislators had debated various measures during that 
session but had taken no action. The old overseers reported to the current session about the 
condition of the prison, including the number of prisoners, rations and supplies, religious 
instruction, the need for an addition to the buildings, including workshops; they attached a 
statement of the prison's expenses. A legislative committee reviewed this material and reported that 
the prison had cost $70,987 over the last ten years and that there had been either a misapplication of 
labor or bad management; the committee recommended that new overseers be appointed. Archives, 
Crimes and Misdemeanors, Ser. 2, I, 1 19-24; House Proceedings of June 5, 1818: Courant. June 
16, 1818; Mercury, June 23, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 9 

To the Honourable General Assembly now in session; 
The committee appointed to receive and count the votes returned to this As- 
sembly for persons to stand in nomination for election in the sixteenth 
Congress of the United States, and to report to this Assembly the names of the 
eighteen persons who have the highest number of votes, beg leave to report, 

That they have duly received and counted the votes legally returned, for per- 
sons to stand in nomination for election in the sixteenth Congress of the United 
States, and find that the names of the eighteen persons who have the highest 
number of votes, are as follows, that is to say; 7 

Jonathan O. Moseley 

Gideon Tomlinson 

James Stevens 

John Russ 

John T. Peters 

Ralph I. Ingersoll 

Samuel A. Foot 

Elisha Phelps 

Noyes Barber 

David Bolles 

Christopher Manwaring 

Seth P. Beers 

Henry W. Edwards 

Simeon H. Miner 

Orange Merwin 

Ansel Sterling 

Calvin Willey and 

Elisha Tracey. 

All which is respectfully submitted, 

per order, James Lanman, Chairman. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Zephaniah Swift to be Chief 
Judge of the Superiour Court for the year ensuing 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable John Trumbull to be Judge of the 
Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 



7. Despite the initial decision not to nominate candidates for the spring 1818 elections (above, 
p. xv), Federalists eventually put forth a list of Congressional nominees to counter the reformers' 
ticket; the latter, however, was entirely successful, making this vote another measure of the 
continuing political transformation in the state. The votes for Congressional nominees ranged from 
12,281 for Moseley to 7,466 for Tracey. Only Moseley, who had been included on both lists, 
remained from the current Congressional delegation; the other six incumbents, Timothy Pitkin, 
Samuel B. Sherwood, Thomas S. Williams, Nathaniel Terry, Uriel Holmes, and Ebenezer 
Huntington, included only on the Federalist ticket, fell short in the vote. Mercury, Mar. 24, May 26, 
1818; Courant, Mar. 31, 1818. See S.R., XVIII, 83-84, 83-84n, for the current delegation, and 
Thomas, "Politics," pp. 259-60, for further analysis. 



10 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable William Edmond to be Judge of 
the Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Nathaniel Smith to be Judge of 
the Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Jeremiah G. Brainard to be 
Judge of the Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Stephen T. Hosmer to be Judge 
of the Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable James Gould to be Judge of the 
Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable John T Peters to be Judge of the 
Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Asa Chapman to be Judge of the 
Superiour Court for the year ensuing. 8 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Jonathan Brace, Judge of the 
County Court within and for the County of Hartford, for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John Kingsbury, Esquire, Judge of the County 
Court within and for the County of New-Haven for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Elias Perkins, Judge of the 
County Court within and for the County of New-London for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Robert Fairchild, Esquire, Judge of the County 
Court within and for the County of Fairfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint David Bolles, Esquire, Judge of the County 
Court within and for the County of Windham for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Augustus Pettibone Esquire, Judge of the 
County Court within and for the County of Litchfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Asher Miller Esquire, Judge of the County Court 
within and for the County of Middlesex for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Sylvester Gilbert Esquire, Judge of the County 
Court within and for the County of Tolland for the year ensuing. 



8. Peters and Chapman were new appointees to the Superior Court, replacing Calvin Goddard 
and Simeon Baldwin; for the context of these appointments in the ongoing consideration of judicial 
reform, see S.R., XVin. xli-xlii; above, p. xxii. Chapman was an assistant preceding this appointment: 
S.R., XVIII, 153n. Peters (1765-1834), a 1789 Yale graduate, had studied law with John Cotton Smith 
and practiced in his native Hebron. He represented that town many times in the Assembly before he 
was appointed collector of U.S. revenue for Connecticut's first district in 1813, when he moved to 
Hartford. He was an Episcopalian and a Democratic-Republican. Dexter, Yale Graduates. IV, 650. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 1 1 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Jonathan Brace, Judge of Pro- 
bate within and for the district of Hartford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Elizur Goodrich Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of New-Haven for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Matthew Griswold Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of New-London for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Samuel Rowland Esqr. Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Fairfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John Baldwin Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Windham for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Rufus Adams Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Plainfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Henry Hill, Esquire, Judge of Probate within and 
for the district of Guilford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Nathan Preston Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Woodbury for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Benjamin Trumbull, Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of East-Haddam for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable Frederick Wolcott, Judge of Pro- 
bate within and for the district of Litchfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint James Stevens, Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Stamford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Daniel B. Cooke, Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Danbury for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Nathaniel Shipman Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Norwich for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Asher Miller, Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Middletown for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Lemuel Grosvenor, Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Pomfret for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Elisha Sterling, Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Sharon for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Calvin Willey, Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Stafford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Solomon Everest, Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Simsbury for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Ralph Hurlbut Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Stonington, for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John Mix Esquire, Judge of Probate within and 
for the district of Farmington for the year ensuing. 



12 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

This Assembly do appoint Jared P. Kirtland Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Wallingford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint William Lynde Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Saybrook for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint David Plant Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of Stratford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Henry Terry Esquire, Judge of Probate within 
and for the district of East-Windsor for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John Kingsbury Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Waterbury for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Augustus Pettibone Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Norfolk for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint David S. Boardman Esqr. Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of New-Milford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Sylvester Gilbert Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Hebron for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint William M. Betts Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Norwalk for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Joab Griffin Junr. Esquire, Judge of Probate 
within and for the district of Granby for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Lemuel Whitman Esqr. Justice of Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Hartford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Noah A. Phelps Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Hartford for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Isaac Mills Esquire, Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of New-Haven for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Charles H. Pond Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of New-Haven for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint William Randall Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of New-London for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Moses Warren Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of New-London for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Daniel B. Cooke Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Fairfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Stephen Wheeler Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Fairfield for the year ensuing. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 13 

This Assembly do appoint James Gordon Junr. Esqr. Justice of the Peace 
and Quorum within and for the County of Windham for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Edmund Freeman Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Windham for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Cyrus Swan Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Litchfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Martin Strong Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Litchfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Joshua Stow Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Middlesex for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Joel Pratt Esqr. Justice of the Peace and Quorum 
within and for the County of Middlesex for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Benning Mann Esqr. Justice of the Peace and 
Quorum within and for the County of Tolland for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Septimus G. Huntington Esqr. Justice of the 
Peace and Quorum within and for the County of Tolland for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Jonathan Bull, William Moseley, Amasa Keyes, 
Thomas Chester, Elisha Colt, John Morgan, Thomas Day, Walter Mitchell, 
Elisha Mix, Joseph Trumbull, Seth Terry, Sheldon W. Candee, John Russ, John 
S. Peters, Hezekiah Huntington, Isaac Spencer 2d, Luther Savage, Thomas 
Tisdall, Nathaniel Seymour, Henry Seymour, Jonathan Law, Nathan Johnson, 
Noah A. Phelps, Talcott Wolcott, Daniel Dunbar, Jabez Langdon, Andrew 
Pratt, Luther Beckley, Samuel Hart, Thomas Lee, Benjamin Allen, Enos Ives, 
Salmon Norton, George Mitchell, Abraham Pettibone, Simeon Hart, Bliss 
Hart, Theodore Pettibone, Elias Wooden, Ezra Adams, Solomon Everest, 
James Humphrey, Jasper Bidwell, Jedediah Wilcox, Jared Mills, George 
Griswold, Samuel Pitkin, Timothy Hall, Theodore Pitkin, Levi Goodwin, 
Richard Pitkin, Deodat Woodbridge, Charles Jenks, John Stoughton Junr., 
Timothy Ellsworth, Jonathan Bartlett, Joel Holkins, Eli B. Haskell, Godfrey 
Scarborough, Jonathan Pasco, Asher Allen, Daniel Hayden, Henry Terry, 
Elam O. Potter, William Dixon, Lorrain T Pease, Lemuel Kingsbury, Jabez 
Collins, John Treadwell, Timothy Pitkin, Roger Hooker, Ezekiel Cowles, 
Thomas S. Day, George Norton, Horace Cowles, Lemuel Whitman, Eli Todd, 
Noadiah Woodruff, Zephaniah H. Smith, Elisha Hale, Pardon Brown, David E. 
Hubbard, Samuel Wells, Jeremiah Stocking, Hezekiah Holcomb, Joseph 
Cornish, Asa Haynes, Joab Griffin, Joel Holcomb, James Dibble, Daniel 



14 PUBLIC records May, 

Benjamin. John Treat, Philander Humphrey, Elijah Coe, Ephraim Selby, 
Nathaniel Bosworth, Jared Newell, Ezra Doolittle, Joel Foote, Israel Foote, 
Elisha Buell, Calvin Barber, Campbell Humphrey, John Bestor, William 
Mather, Timothy Goodwin, Elisha Phelps, Asaph Tuller, Roger Whittlesey, 
Roswell Moore, Ichabod C. Frisbie, Samuel H. Woodruff, John E. Benjamin. 
Nathaniel J. Root, Asahel Hathaway, Joseph Austin, William Gay. Oliver 
Pease. Samuel Hastings, Horace King, Martin Sheldon. Stephen Mix Mitchell, 
Joseph Bulkley. John Williams. Ezekiel P. Belden. Martin Kellogg Junr., Fred- 
erick Robbins. Leonard Wells. Eli Goodrich, Robert Francis. Oliver Mather, 
Elihu Mills, Luther Fitch, Henry L. Ellsworth, Elisha N. Sill, Richard Niles, 
Joseph H. Russel, [and] John Mix, Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace within 
and for the County of Hartford for the year ensuing. 

Whereas Edward Selden and Abiather Newton Esquires did not make return 
of duties on writs within the time prescribed by law, but have since made return 
to the Treasurer. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Edward Selden and Abiather 
Newton be, and they are hereby appointed Justices of the Peace for the County 
of Hartford for the year ensuing, and they are authorized and empowered to ex- 
ecute said office, any law to the contrary notwithstanding. — 

This Assembly do appoint Henry Daggett, James Hillhouse, Simeon 
Baldwin. Elizur Goodrich. Dyer White, Nathan Smith, Elisha Munson, 
Charles Denison. Aeneas Munson Junr., Eleazer Foster, Eli Whitney, Henry 
Ward. Levi Ives, Isaac Gilbert, Charles Bostwick, John Hunt 2d, Chauncey 
Bunce. Benjamin Page. James Barker. Eli Fowler. Josiah J. Lindsley, Ebenezer 
Lindsley Junr., Jacob Frisbie Junr.. Rufus Hitchcock. Charles Shelton. Thomas 
T. Cornwall. William Law, Andrew Hull, John Humphreys. Philo Bassett, John 
Humphreys Junr.. Sheldon Curtiss. John L. Tomlinson, Josiah Bradley. Enos 
Hemingway, Stephen Woodward. Bela Farnam, Jonathan Todd, Henry Hill. 
Nathan Chidsey, Nathaniel Griffing, Reuben Eliott, Abraham Coan, John F. 
Meiggs, David S. Fowler, Josiah Coan, Frederick Lee. Samuel Fowler, John 
Hubbard. Elam Ives, Amasa Bradley. Russel Pierpont. Hezekiah J. Warner, 
Jared Benhams. Benajah Andrews, Patrick Clarke, William Yale, David 
Thompson, Nathaniel Richardson. Asahel Bronson. Benjamin Bull, William 
Durand, Samuel B. Gunn, Charles H. Pond. W r illiam Strong, Ichabod A. 
Woodruff, Abel Wheeler, Charles Bunnell, Jared Hawley. Shadrach Osborn, 
Simeon Hinman, Burton Canfield, Amos Johnson, Curtis Hinman. William 
Hinman. Moses Wlieeler, Joshua Barnes, Justus Bishop. Daniel Pierpont, 
Jacob Bassett, Samuel Hall, Aaron Hall, Samuel Cook, Amos Dutton, Jared P. 
Kirtland, Ephraim Cook, Elkanah Hall. Cyrus Clark, Truman Porter, Daniel 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 15 

Steele, Ashley Scott, Woodward Hotchkiss, David French, John Thomas, 
Justus Thomas, Ezra Kimberly, Philo F. Dibble, Hezekiah Baldwin, Mark Har- 
rison, Isaac Bronson, [and] Ambrose Ives, Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace 
within and for the County of New-Haven for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Jacob B. Gurley, Ebenezer Learned, Isaac 
Thompson, William Stockman, Nathaniel Harris, Christopher Manwaring, 
Ephraim M. Frink, Henry Mason, John A. Fulton, Andrew Perkins, Calvin 
Goddard, Erastus Huntington, Simeon Thomas, Joseph Williams, James 
Stedman, Zachariah Huntington, Benjamin Snow, Charles P. Huntington, 
George Perkins, Farwell Coit, John Fanning, Jonathan Comstock, David 
Bentley, Eleazer Rogers, Benjamin Tracy, John Hyde, Joshua Stark, Gardner 
Avery, William Whiting, Erastus Hyde, John R. Watrous, Henry Champion, 
Benjamin Trumbull, Samuel A. Peters, Asa Newton, John Isham Junior, John 
Bigelow, Joseph Morgan, Zachariah Olmsted, Ebenezer A. Packer, Daniel 
Carrier, Oliver Johnson, Eli Hartshorn, Gideon Hoxey, Joshua Hyde, Ira Abel, 
Alexander Stewart, Charles Fanning, John Tyler, William Clift, Hezekiah 
Boardman, Welcome A. Browning, William Tucker Junr., Ebenezer Avery 
Junior, John Daboll, Ralph Hurlbut, Christopher Morgan, John O. Miner, 
Christopher Lester, Noyes Barber, Amos A. Niles, Roswell Fish, Rufus Smith, 
Thomas Avery, Philip Gray, John Spicer, William Williams, Rodman Niles, 
Levi Perkins, William Adams, Freeman Tracy, Frederick Perkins, Daniel 
Braman, Matthew Griswold, Moses Warren, Calvin Selden, William Noyes, 
Remick Wait, Henry Perkins, Joseph E. Ely, Ebenezer Brockway, Harris 
Tinker, Richard E. Selden, Charles Smith, Richard Lord, Samuel B. Mather, 
Joel Loomis, Peter Comstock, David Turner, Asahel Otis, Mumford Dolbeare, 
Oliver Comstock, Oliver Raymond, Nathaniel Bradford, Stephen Avery, 
Thomas Prentice, Elias Hewitt, Nathan Pendleton, Sands Cole, Chester Smith, 
Stanton Hewit, Jeremiah Halsey, Stephen Meech, Jonah Witter, John Brewster, 
Isaac Avery, Denison Palmer, Jonathan Brewster, Isaac Williams 2d, William 
Randall, Park Williams, Joseph Smith, William Robinson, Amos Denison, 
Jesse Dean, George Hubbard, Amos Gallup, George Williams, William Moore 
4th, Jeremiah Comstock, Charles Avery, Benajah Gardner, Griswold Avery, 
Simon Brewster, [and] Elias Brown Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace within 
and for the County of New-London for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John Hull, Roger M. Sherman, Samuel Rowland, 
Hull Bradley, Eliphalet Swift, Amos Burr, Gideon Tomlinson, Jessup 
Wakeman, Jeremiah Sturges, Abraham D. Baldwin, Seymour Taylor, Ralph 
Sherwood, Amos Wilson, Samuel H. Phillips, Friend Starr, William Cook, 



16 public records May, 

Nathan Seeley, Phinehas Taylor, Zalmon Wildman, David B. Cooke, Daniel N. 
Carrington, David Foot, Benjamin Hoyt Junr., Daniel Tomlinson, Noah A. 
Lacey, Heman Birch, Colby Chamberlain, Gilbert Close, David Wood, Wil- 
liam Knapp, Joshua Ferris, Augur Judson, Samuel Wheeler, Israel A. 
Beardsley, William Shelton, Joseph Shelton, Lemuel Judson, Deodat Silliman, 
Ebenezer Beardsley, Abel French, Isaac Richards, Stephen Betts, Nathan 
Seeley, Aaron Comstock, Samuel T. Barnum. Jabez Treadwell, Daniel Hoyt, 
Samuel C. Blackman, Zachariah Ferris. Ebenezer Turner, Marcus Botsford, 
Zachariah Clark Junr., Henry Belden, Barnabas Marvin, Clark Bissell, Seth 
Taylor, Benjamin Isaacs, William M. Betts, Phinehas Miller, Thaddeus Betts, 
William Heron, Billy Comstock, Jonathan R. Sanford, William Sanford, Jona- 
than Meeker, Samuel Stebbins, Timothy Keeler, Jesse S. Bradley, Abner 
Gilbert Junior, Gamaliel Benedict, William Hawley, Bradley Hull, Abijah 
Hyatt, David Northrop, Jedediah Greaves. John Orton, Reuben Scofield, John 
Davenport Junr., Simeon H. Minor, John Augur, James Stevens, Isaac Lock- 
wood. Cary Bell, Samuel W. Johnson, Jabez H. Tomlinson, Joseph Backus, 
Elijah Ufford, William Peet, Charles McEwen, Daniel Judson, Noah Plumb. 
David Plant, James E. Beach, Elihu Beach, Stephen Beardsley, Stephen 
Middlebrook, Judson Curtis, James Beardsley Junr., Ebenezer Wheeler Jtmrr. 
David Beebe, Jeremiah Rowland, Isaac Bennett, Simeon Fanton, Calvin Wheeler 
Junr., Abel Gregory, Stephen Wheeler. Charles Winton. Matthew Marvin, Ezekiel 
Sturges, Daniel Church Junr., [and] Bela St. John, Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the 
Peace within and for the County of Fairfield for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint Jabez Clark. Ebenezer Devotion. Hezekiah Ripley, 
Samuel Gray, Philip Hayward, David Young, John Fitch, John Baldwin, 
Edmund Badger, Zacheus Waldo, Josias Byles, William Perkins, Levi Work, 
David Bolles, Edward Keyes, John Warren, John Parish, Roger W. Williams, 
Vine Robinson, Asa Butts, Rufus Adams, Andrew T Judson, Daniel Frost Junr., 
Asahel Bacon, Gad Bulkley, Peter Morse, John Francis, Samuel Little, Silas 
Fuller, Seth Collins, Gershom Dorrance, Joseph Prentis, Roger Taintor, Philip 
Pearl Junr., Amasa Clark, Nathan Jennings, Ezra Hutchins, Joseph Adams, An- 
thony Brown, Ebenezer Young, Penuel Hutchins, Luther Warren, Arby Covil, 
William T. Williams, Peleg Thomas Junr., Asahel Dewey. Elisha Hutchinson. 
Josiah Loomis 2d, Daniel Hutchinson, Ebenezer Johnson, Frederick Freeman, 
John Salter, Zalmon Storrs, Artemas Gurley, Edmund Freeman, Joseph Eaton. 
John Lester, James Gordon Junr., John Dunlap, Sessions Lester, Aaron Crary, 
Jonathan Gallup, Lemuel Ingals, Lemuel Grosvenor, John H. Payson, Samuel 
Allen 2d, Pardon Kingsley, Ephraim Ingalls, John Wylie, Henry Sabin, Dixon 
Hall, Jeremiah Young, John Gallup, George Learned, John Jacobs Junr.. Simon 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 17 

Davis Junior, Jonathan Nichols Junr., Jesse Ormsby, John Nichols 2d, Allyn 
Campbell, James Alexander, William Gallup, Daniel Keigwin, Sterry Kinney, 
John McClellan, John Fox, Nehemiah Child, Rensellaer Child, Ebenezer 
Stoddard, [and] Eleazer Litchfield, Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace within and 
for the County of Windham for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint James Morris, Uriel Holmes, Seth Landon, Asa 
Bacon Junior, Phineas Miner, Levi Catlin, Morris Woodruff, John Welch, 
Jabez W. Huntington, Seth P. Beers, Jonathan Buel, Nathaniel Goodwin, John 
Merrils, Luke Loomis, Paul Roberts Junr., William Taylor, Amos Beecher, 
George D. Kasson, Joseph H. Bellamy, Sheldon C. Leavitt, Nehemiah Lam- 
bert, Samuel Bloss, John Elmore, Silas Franklin, John Holabird, Azariah 
Smith, William M. Burrall, Joshua Cornwall, Benajah Douglass, Nathaniel 
Stevens, Reuben Rockwell, Seth Marshall, Nathan Bass, Launcelot Phelps, 
Grove Pinney, Oliver Burnham, Benjamin Gold, Rufus Swift, Benjamin Sedg- 
wick, William Kellogg, Adino Hale, Moses Lyman Junr., William Stanley, 
Theodore North, Truman Starr, Julius Beach, James Brace, Lewis Catlin, 
Benjamin Griswold, Noah Welton, Benajah Hayden, Matthew Elliott, 
Nathaniel P. Perry, Hopson Pratt, John Mills, Philo Mills, Aaron Austin, Roger 
Mills, Chauncey Seymour, William G. Williams, Asa Goodwin, Asher 
Merrils, Reuben Warner, Elisha Bostwick, David S. Boardman, Abel Merwin, 
Joel Sanford, Homer Boardman, Eli Todd, Stephen Crane, Augustus 
Pettibone, Benjamin Welch, Joseph Battel, Michael F. Mills, Joseph Riggs, 
Daniel Potter, Calvin Butler, Thomas Mitchell, Silas Miner, Josiah R. East- 
man, Royal R. Hinman, Stephen Sanford, Samuel Lee, Elisha Sterling, Lot 
Norton, Martin Strong, John M. Holly, Eliphalet Whittlesey, Samuel Church, 
John Cotton Smith, Calvin Gay, Samuel E. Everitt, Oliver Kellogg, Cyrus 
Swan, Ansel Sterling, Samuel Rockwell, Samuel R. Gager, William Battel, 
Lyman Wetmore, Erastus Hodges, Russell C. Abernethy, Samuel Woodward, 
Stephen Filer, Oliver Coe, John Tallmadge, Benjamin Carter, Judah Eldred, 
Youngs Elliott, Daniel N. Brinsmade, David Whittlesey, William Cogswell, 
Elijah Hazen, Daniel B. Brinsmade, Hermanus Marshall, Constantine 
McMahon, Charles Merriman, John H. DeForest, Holbrook Curtis, Amos 
Baldwin, Daniel Hicox Junior, Samuel Hurlburt, Solomon Rockwell, Joseph 
Miller, James Beebe, Luman Wakefield, Truman S. Wetmore, Noah B. Bene- 
dict, Nathan Preston, Charles B. Phelps, Philo Murray, [and] Reuben Martin, 
Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace within and for the County of Litchfield for 
the year ensuing. 



18 PUBLIC records May, 

This Assembly do appoint Asher Miller, Matthew T. Russell, Nehemiah 
Hubbard, Ebenezer Sage, Isaac Gridley, John Pratt, Eli Coe, Josiah Sage, 
Josiah Savage, Daniel J. Griswold, Alexander Wolcott, Elisha Coe, Seth Pad- 
dock, Arthur W. Magill, Major A. Andrews, Oliver Wells, Calvin Brainard, 
Simon Shayler, John Brainard 2d, John Brainard, Joseph Arnold, Joseph 
Scovil, Daniel Shepard, David Clark, Nathaniel Cornwall, Benjamin Hurd, 
Ralph Smith, Abel Penfield, George White, Amasa Daniels Junr., Sparrow 
Smith, Guernsey Bates, Worthington G. Chauncey, Bridgman Guernsey, 
James Robinson, Lemuel Camp, John Brainard, Josiah Griffin, William Cone, 
Sylvester Chapman, Isaac Chapman, William Palmer, Samuel P. Lord, 
Deodate Jones, Isaac Chester, William Hungerford, William Morgan, Nathan 
Hull, Joel Griswold, Amaziah Bray, William Carter, David Kelsey, Austin 
Olcott, Benjamin Hurd, Jedediah Harris, Jonathan Lay, Samuel Hart, Samuel 
Williams, John Stannard, Jonathan Warner, Clark Nott, Joseph Hill, Augustus 
Bushnell, Rufus Clark, Joel Pratt, Stephen Utter, James P. Redfield, [and] 
Benjamin Holt, Esquire[s], Justice[s] of the Peace within and for the County of 
Middlesex for the year ensuing. 

Whereas William Lynde, Esquire, who was appointed a Justice of the Peace 
within and for the County of Middlesex for the last year, did, by accident, omit 
to return an account of duties to the Treasurer by the 20th of May last, as the 
law requires, and whereas it now appears, that he hath made his return, that he 
had received no duties the year past; 

Resolved by this Assembly that said William Lynde be, and he is hereby ap- 
pointed a Justice of the Peace within and for the County of Middlesex for the 
year ensuing; and is hereby authorized and empowered to execute and perform 
the duties of a Justice as aforesaid, any law to the contrary notwithstanding. 

This Assembly do appoint Jonathan Barnes, Elisha Stearns, Calvin Willey, 
Ashbel Chapman, Saul Alvord Junr., Ichabod M. Warner, Joseph Carver, Jabez 
L. White, Jesse Root, Nathan Howard, Elisha Edgerton, Elijah Wright, Jeremiah 
Parish, Isaiah Daggett, John Hall, Asa Willey, Robert Hyde, Ichabod Mudge, 
Sylvester Gilbert, Joel Jones, Elijah House, Stewart Beebe, Payton R. Gilbert, 
Andrew Mann, Calvin Pitkin, Benjamin Phelps, Solomon L. Fuller, Horatio A. 
Hamilton, Walter R. Kibbee, Calvin Edson, Nathan Johnson, Oliver King, 
Lebbeus P. Tinker, John Walker, Samuel Crawford, William Foster, Ingoldsby 
W. Crawford, Zebulon Crocker, Caleb Walker, [and] Daniel Glazier, Esquire[s], 
Justice[s] of the Peace within and for the County of Tolland for the year ensuing. 

This Assembly do appoint John F. Waters Esquire Colonel of the 1st Regiment 
of Militia in this State. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 19 

This Assembly do appoint James Sellew Esquire Colonel of the 6th Regiment 
of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Charles Hanford Esqr. Colonel of the 9th Regiment 
of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Jesse P. Holcomb Esqr. Colonel of the 17th Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Daniel F. Hibbard Esqr. Colonel of the 23d Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Henry F. Lamb Esqr. Colonel of the 2d Regiment of 
Horse Artillery in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Amaziah Bray Esqr. Colonel of the 1st Regiment of 
Light artillery in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Robert T. Mather Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Edmund Bulkley Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint George Reynolds Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of [the] 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint John B. Chittenden Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 

10th Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Ezra Adams Junr. Esq. Lieutenant Colonel of the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint James White Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Benjamin A. Darling Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of 

the 24th Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint George Kinney Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 2d 

Regiment of Horse artillery in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Robert Gates Esqr. Lieutenant Colonel of the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Ireneus Brown Esqr. Major of the 1st Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Joseph Camp Esqr. Major of the 6th Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Noah Mead Esquire Major of the 9th Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Josiah Coan Junr. Esqr. Major of the 10th Regiment 

of Militia in this State. 



20 PUBLIC records May, 

This Assembly do appoint Abraham Pettibone Junr., Esqr. Major of the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Samuel Norris Esqr. Major of the 17th Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Pierce Darrow Esqr. Major of the 20th Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint Chester Daggett Esqr. Major of the 23d Regiment of 

Militia in this State. 
This Assembly do appoint William Dudley Esqr. Major of the 24th Regiment 

of Militia in this State. 
The Assembly do appoint Erastus Sage Esquire Major of the 4th Regiment of 

Cavalry in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Amos Williams Esquire Major of the 2d Regiment 
of Horse Artillery in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint William Bull Esquire first Major of the 1st Regi- 
ment of Light- Artillery in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Charles Harrison Esqr. 2d Major of the 1st Regi- 
ment of Light- Artillery in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Nathan Merwin 2d Esqr. Major of the 2d Regiment 
of Riflemen in this State. — 

This Assembly do establish James M. Goodwin 1st Lieutenant of the 1st Com- 
pany of Governour's Foot-Guards in this State; to take rank from 26th 
March 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Samuel Church 2d Lieutenant of the 1st Company 
of Governour's Foot-Guards in this State; to take rank from 26th March 1818. 

This Assembly do establish George Beach 3d Lieutenant of the 1st Company of 
Governour's Foot-Guards in this State; to take rank from 26th March 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Caleb Goodwin 4th Lieutenant of the 1st Company 
of Governour's Foot-Guards in this State; to take rank from 26th March 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Lynds Olmsted Ensign of the 1st Company of 
Governour's Foot-Guards in this State; to take rank from 26th March 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Chauncey Porter Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th May 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Lyman Loomis Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th May 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 21 

This Assembly do establish Eli Olmsted Lieut, of the 4th Corny, in the 1 st Reg- 
iment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 1 1th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Luman Hurlburt Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 1 st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 1 1th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joab Loomis Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 30th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Richard F. Combs Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 30th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah Phelps Junr. Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Philip Barnes Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Smith Junr. Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Amos Ford Junr. Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Divine Chatfield Captain of the 6th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Enos Candee Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas L. Osborn Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer Prentice Capt. of 1st Flank Corny, in the 

3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 3d March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Erastus Smith Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 24th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Frederick Moore Ensign of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 3d March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Ashcraft Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 1 1th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Ashcraft Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ezra W. Miller Ensign of the 1st Company in the 

3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Guy Dolbeare Captain of the 3d Company in the 

3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lemuel R. Dolbeare Lieut, of the 3d Company in 

the 3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Horace Miller Lieut, of the 7th Company in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 22d April 1818. 



22 public records May, 

This Assembly do establish Asa Swan Ensign of the 7th Company in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jabez R. Robinson Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Calvin Hebard Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lebbeus Lathrop Ensign of the 1st Company in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ephraim Medbury Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Saxton Frink Ensign of the 2d Company in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Prince Captain of the 3d Company in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Peirce Lieut, of the 3d Company in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 26th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer Scarborough Ensign of the 3d Corny, in 

the 5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Sanford Carey Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 13th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Lyman Foster Ensign of the 6th Company in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Seth W. Brown Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ephraim Cole Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Aaron Rude Lieutenant of the 8th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th August 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Seth Spalding Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th August 1817. 
This Assembly do establish William Sprague Capt. of the 8th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Adam C. Kasson Captain of the 3d Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th November 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Chauncey Strickland Capt. of the 3d Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 1th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jesse Strickland Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 1th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Archibald Pibbles Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 1th May 1818. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 23 

This Assembly do establish George Hart Captain of the 8th Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 6th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Chauncey Shipman Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 6th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Seth Stanley Junr. Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 6th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David M. Griswold Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 

7th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Fenner Bush Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 7th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 9th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Burr Captain of the 8th Corny, in the 7th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 8th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha Clark Ensign of the 8th Company in the 7th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 8th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Gideon Chapman Capt. of the 2d flank Company in 

the 8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 4th November 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Benjamin Peabody Junr. Lieut, of the 2d flank 

Corny, in the 8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 4th No- 
vember 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Andrew B. Holmes Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 4th November 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Francis Amy Captain of the 1st Company in the 

8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 28th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles H. Smith Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 28th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John F. Trumbull Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 28th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Harding Captain of the 2d Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Roswell Packer Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Packer Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Noyes 4th Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

8th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William M. Smith Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jona. B. Waterbury Ensign of the 1st flank Corny. 

in the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 st April 1818. 



24 public records May, 

This Assembly do establish Samuel Close Captain of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jacob Stevens Junr. Captain of the 8th Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 30th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Luther Weed Lieutenant of the 8th Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 30th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ralph Hoyt Junr. Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 30th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Grave 2d Ensign of the 3d Company in the 

10th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th August 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Darius Hicks Ensign of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George S. Ingals Ensign of the 3d flank Corny, in 

the 1 1 th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jeremiah Field Captain of the 1st Company in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Peter Hall Lieutenant of the 1st Company in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Erastus Spalding Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Luther Rawson Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 

1 lth Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Child Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 1 lth 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathaniel Jones Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

1 lth Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lathrop Clark Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 1 lth 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Perrin Lieut, of the 7th Company in the 1 lth 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer Dewing Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

1 lth Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Corbin Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 1 lth 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Judson Blackman Capt. of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 1 2th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Brush Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Judson Ensign of the 1 st flank Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 25 

This Assembly do establish Jedediah Lemmon Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 11th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Thomas Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 1 2th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Chauncey Hodge Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Anson Northrop Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Garry Bronson Lieut, of the 8th Company in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from 19th January 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William H. Smith Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 19th January 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Pierce Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 

13th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Isham Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 13th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Honora Elton Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 13th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 

Whereas Joel Catlin was returned duly chosen Captain of the 5th Company 
in the 13th Regiment of Militia, which return was referred to a special commit- 
tee to take into consideration said return and the remonstrance thereto; and 
whereas said committee reported, that said Joel Catlin was legally chosen by 
said company, which said report was accepted and approved, 
This Assembly do establish Joel Catlin Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 13th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 18th June 1817. 

This Assembly do establish Chester Grannis Captain of the flank Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Root Gridley Lieutenant of the flank Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Rensellaer Carter Ensign of the flank Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George Flagg Captain of the 6th Company in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Hezekiah Selden Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Hezekiah Selden Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 6th May 1818. 



26 PUBLIC records May, 

This Assembly do establish Sylvester Goodman Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 6th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lucius C. Elvvell Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 

15th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel H. Scofield Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

15th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Justus Miles Captain of the 2d Corny, in the 15th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jerardus Robards Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

15th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lyman Hine Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 15th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Castle Betts Lieutenant of the 8th Corny, in the 

15th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jona. J. Randall Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 

15th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Marsh Capt. of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer W. Bolls Lieut, of the 1 st flank Corny, in 

the 1 6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish James Trowbridge Ensign of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 1 6th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Sheldon Scovil Ensign of the 3d Company in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 27th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Wright Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 17th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jona. Wright 2d Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 16th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 17th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Putnam Kilborn Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 17th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Gibbs Junr. Capt. of the 6th Corny, in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Burr Goodwin Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 16th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 21st May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Linus Moses Captain of the 3d Company in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Shubael S. Hoskins Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lot Thompson Lieutenant of the 4th Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 28th May 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 27 

This Assembly do establish George Barnard Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 28th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joab Griffin Junr. Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 13th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Justin Reed Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 13th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asa Roath Lieut, of the 1st Company in the 18th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Simeon Thomas 2d Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

18th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jeduthan Paulk Capt. of the 3d flank Corny, in the 

19th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 15th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Eliakim Paulk Lieut, of the 3d flank Corny, in the 

19th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 15th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Eli Hyde Lieutenant of the 4th Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th March 1817. 
This Assembly do establish John Johnson Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th March 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Elizur Curtis Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th Octr. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Gordon Handerson Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 

21st Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 20th Octr. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Absalom Wells Junr. Ensign of the 1st Corny, in 

the 2 1 st Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 29th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Calvin Hall Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Calvin Kibbe Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Silas Kibbe Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 2d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Levi Hitchcock Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 23d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alpha Simon Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 23d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah Smith Junr. Capt. of the 8th Corny, in the 

21st Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 29th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha Smith Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 29th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Westlake Ensign of the 8th Company in the 

21st Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 29th April 1818. 



28 PUBLIC records May, 

This Assembly do establish Samuel Root Capt. of the 1 st flank Corny, in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 15th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Anson Sperry Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 5th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Enos Warner Ensign of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 5th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Plina Sheldon Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Ransen Scovil Lieut, of the 1st Company in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 16th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Julius J. B. Kingsbury Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1 6th December 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Archibald Minor Captain of the 4th Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Moses Pond Junr. Lieut, of the 4th Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Mark Upson Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Harding Capt. of the flank Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Thompson Lieut, of the flank Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alva Hovey Ensign of the flank Company in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Robertson Capt. of the 2d Corny, in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 9th January 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel J. Robertson Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 9th January 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Amos Richardson Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 8th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah Brown Junr. Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 26th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elias Scarborough Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Armin Bolles Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ezra Southworth Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 1st April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jacob N. Torry Captain of the 8th Corny, in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from 25th February 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 29 

This Assembly do establish Joseph Pinney Captain of the 1st Troop in the 1st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 20th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Erastus Graham 1st Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 

1st Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 20th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Miles Foot 2d Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 1st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 20th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joel A. Tuller Cornet of the 1st Troop in the 1st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 20th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Lyon 1 st Lieutenant of the 3d Troop in the 1 st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 16th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Zolva Brown 2d Lieut, of the 3d Troop in the 1st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 16th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John J. Moulton Cornet of the 3d Troop in the 1st 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 16th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Denison Grant 2d Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 2d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Azel Sumner Cornet of 1st Troop in the 2d Regi- 
ment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jacob Dresser Captain of the 4th Troop in the 2d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 14th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathan Williams 1st Lieut, of the 4th Troop in the 

2d Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 14th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Abiel Fox 2d Lieutenant of the 4th Troop in the 2d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 14th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Williams Cornet of the 4th Troop in the 2d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 14th May 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jannah B. Phelps 1st Lieut, of the 2d Troop in the 

3d Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Myron Norton 2d Lieut, of the 2d Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Delliber Cornet of the 2d Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Wheeler 1st Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 23d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Pearce 2d Lieutenant of the 1st Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 23d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Preston Downs Cornet of the 1st Troop in the 5th 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State, to take rank from 23d April 1818. 



30 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

This Assembly do establish Degrass Maltby Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 3d 

November 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Joel Augur 1st Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Horse-Artillery in this State, to take rank from 3d Novr. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Isaac Stiles 2d Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 3d Nov. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Philo Harrison 3d Lieut, of the 1 st Corny, in the 1 st 

Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 3d Nov. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish David Leek 4th Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 3d Nov. 1817. 
This Assembly do establish Denison B. Williams 4th Lieut, of the 4th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Hezekiah S. Bradley Capt. of the 3d Company in the 

3d Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Sanford Junr. 4th Lieut. 3d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 4th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel S. Gray Cornet of the 3d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 14th April 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Avery Brumley Capt. of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Abijah Thacher 1st Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Nathaniel Herrick 2d Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 22d April 1818. 

Whereas, at a General Assembly holden at New-Haven in October 1817, on 
petition of the New-Haven Artillery Company, praying that four Lieutenants 
maybe commissioned in said company; which petition was granted, but by 
some mistake two commissions were not then issued, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Egbert D. Peck be established as third Lieu- 
tenant, and Abiel H. Maltby as fourth Lieutenant of the seventh Company in 
the first Regiment of Light- Artillery in the Militia of this State, to take rank 
from the 10th day of April 1817; and that his Excellency the Governour be re- 
quested to commission them accordingly. 

This Assembly do establish Stephen Chalker 1st Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 1st 
Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 27th March 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 31 

This Assembly do establish Abraham Pratt 2d Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 27th March 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel Darbe Capt. of the 1 st Corny, in the 2d Reg- 
iment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Clark Parker 1st Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1 th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Cady, 2d Lieut, of the 1st Company in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Manning Captain of the 6th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1 th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Frederick Tracy 1st Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1 th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George Spafford 2d Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 1 1th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ephraim Wilcox Junr. Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Porter 1st Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asa Pease 2d Lieutenant of the 7th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Light- Artillery in this State, to take rank from 25th April 1818. 

This Assembly do establish James Winship Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 2d 
Regiment of Riflemen in this State, to take rank from 7th April 1818. — 



32 PUBLIC records May, 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act entitled An act for forming and 
conducting the military force of this State. 9 [Stat. Conn., II, 299-301] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that so much of the act to which this is in 
addition, as requires the regimental staff to be taken from the line of subalterns, 
and the line of sergeants, be and the same is hereby repealed. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that in future the sabres for the cavalry, shall 
not be less than three feet in length, exclusive of the hilt, any law or custom 
notwithstanding. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that each non-commissioned officer, musician, 
and private of the Horse-Artillery and cavalry, shall provide himself with a 
good sufficient horse, of the size required by law; and that so much of the act of 
which this is an addition, requiring that he shall be the owner of the same, and 
which makes it the duty of the commander of the company to which he be- 
longs, to dismiss him therefrom, if he should be found, at any time, not to own 
and possess such horse, be, and the same is hereby repealed. 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, that in future, the militia of this State, whether 
Artillery, Cavalry, Riflemen, or Infantry, shall be required to attend review, by 
regiment or battalion, as the brigadiers of the several brigades shall direct, once 
in two years only, in the months of September or October, in the manner pre- 
scribed by law, any thing in said act to the contrary notwithstanding. 

Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, that the field officers of the several regiments 
of Artillery, Cavalry, Riflemen and Infantry, shall divide their regiments into as 
many sections as there are field officers in said regiment, and being so divided, 
each field officer shall give notice to the captains composing his section, of the 



9. The sections of the comprehensive militia act passed in October 1815 modified here can be 
found in S.R., XVII, 50, 50n, 448^19, 450, 451, 453-54. In the bill, already under consideration in 
October 1817, the Council deleted "two inches" after "three feet" in the second section and changed 
"three" to "two" in the fourth section; the House agreed with these changes. Archives. Militia, Ser. 3. 
II, 20. The newspapers contain accounts of debates in the House of Representatives, including 
additional attempts at amendment. On October 25, 1817, the legislators gave particular attention to 
the first section, dealing with regimental staff, while on May 19, 1818, they focused on the fourth 
section dealing with the frequency of regimental reviews, which took place annually under the 1815 
law. In both instances. Republican and Tolerationist delegates argued that militia arrangements in the 
state, including the 1815 reorganization, were burdensome to ordinary citizens and favorable to the 
state's elite. The Assembly also had other matters relating to the militia under consideration in 1817 
and 1818, debating, postponing, and rejecting various measures to exempt millers from militia duty, 
extend officers' powers to collect fines, and regulate the use of weapons during training. They also 
considered a request from Quakers, ultimately withdrawn, to be freed from all military burdens, 
including fines. Rejected Bills, 1815-1817, Box 4, 1817, folder 17, docs. 89-91, 102; ibid., 1818- 
1821, Box 5, 1818, folder 4, doc. 73; House Proceedings in the Journal, Nov. 4. 1817, Oct. 27, Nov, 
3, 1818, Courant, May 19, 26, June 2, 9,1818, Mercury, May 26. June 2, 16, 23, Nov. 3, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 33 

time and place of holding a court for imposing fines, which court shall be 
holden in the month of October annually, and shall be held within the limits of 
each company in said section; said field officer, and the captain of the com- 
pany, whose delinquents are to be tried, shall compose the board who are to 
hear and determine the same; the field officer to have a casting vote, in case of 
division, and to have the same power to issue his warrant for the collecting of 
fines so imposed, as is given to the commandant of a regiment, by the act to 
which this is in addition; any thing in said act to the contrary notwithstanding: 
Provided, the commissioned officers of each company alone, shall form a 
board to hear and determine all cases of delinquency on days of company exer- 
cise; and that the captain of each company shall have the same power to issue 
warrants in such cases, as is granted to the field officers by this section; and the 
fines so imposed, shall be applied for the benefit of such company in the same 
manner as is now provided for the distribution of monies for the benefit of the 
regiments: And further provided, that every person so fined, may appeal within 
twelve days after notice thereof, to the board of officers already provided by law. 

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, that it shall be the duty of the commanding 
officer of each company of Infantry, to establish a place or places of parade for 
their respective companies, within the limits thereof; and if any- part of a any 
company shall consider themselves aggrieved by any such establishment, they 
may apply to the commanding officer of the regiment, who shall appoint a 
board consisting of three disinterested captains belonging to his regiment, to 
view, at the expence of the applicants, the local situation of said company; first 
giving notice of the time and place of their meeting for that purpose, to the 
commanding officer thereof; and such board, after having viewed the local sit- 
uation of said company, shall fix and determine the place or places for their 
parade, and make report in writing, of their doings in the premises to the com- 
manding officer thereof, who shall cause the same to be recorded in the orderly 
book of his company. 

Sec. 7. Be it further enacted, that all warrants for the collection of fines, 
shall be directed to a constable of the town in which the delinquent shall reside. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



34 public records May, 

An act in addition to an act, entitled An act relating to escheats, and other 
estates belonging to, and recovered for the use of the public treasury of 
this State. 10 [Stat. Conn., II, 301] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the Treasurer of this State be, and he is 
hereby authorized to employ an agent or agents, living in the vicinity of lands 
belonging to the State, to contract for the sale or other disposition of such 
lands, in such manner, and upon such terms of credit, or money, as in the opin- 
ion of said Treasurer, will most conduce to the interest of the State, and report 
to the General Assembly in May annually, a statement of all sales, or other dis- 
position of public lands, so effected. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act for the relief of Bail. 11 [Stat. Conn., II, 301-2] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that in all cases where any person or persons have 
executed a Bail bond, or entered into a recognizance for the personal appear- 
ance of another perseft, and such bail, or surety shall afterward believe, that his 
principal intends to abscond, such bail, or surety, on application to any Justice 
of the peace, or magistrate in the county in which such principal resides, and 
producing his bail bond or evidence of his surety, and verifying the reason of 
his application, by oath or otherwise, it shall be the duty of such Justice or 
Magistrate, forthwith to grant a mittimus, directed to the sheriff, his deputy, or 
constable, or indifferent person of the county in which such application shall 
be made, commanding such officer, or indifferent person, forthwith to arrest 
such principal, and him commit to the keeper of the common gaol in such 
county, who is hereby authorized to receive such principal, and him retain in 
gaol, until discharged by due order of the law. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



10. For the basic title, see Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 261-62. The legal term "escheats" refers to 
reversions of property to the state when an estate is left vacant without a legal heir. Black's Law 
Dictionary, p. 545. 

1 1 . A "mittimus," mentioned in the act, is an order directing an officer to convey an individual 
to prison and for the jailer to receive that person. Black's Law Dictionary, p. 1002. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 35 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act for maintain- 
ing and supporting the poor. 12 [Stat. Conn., II, 302-3] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that when any person or persons shall 
become poor and unable to support and provide for him, or herself, at any town 
other than that to which he or she belongs, or in which such pauper, or paupers 
statedly reside, it shall be the duty of the person at whose house such poor 
person may be, within five days, to give notice thereof to one of the select-men 
of the town wherein such poor person may be; and unless such notice be given, 
the town to which such poor person belongs, shall not be liable for any support 
that may have been furnished previously to the giving notice as aforesaid. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that it shall be the duty of the select-men of the 
several towns in this State, whenever any person not an inhabitant of such 
town, shall become poor and unable to support and provide for him or herself, 
to furnish for such person, immediate and necessary support; and give infor- 
mation to the town to which such person belongs, if known, as soon as may be. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that if any select-man after notice shall have 
been given to him as aforesaid, shall refuse, or neglect to furnish such immedi- 
ate and necessary support, for such person, and give information thereof to the 
town to which such person may belong, if known, such select-man shall be 
liable to pay, and forfeit the sum of seven dollars, one half to him who shall 
prosecute the same to effect, and the other half to the treasury of the town to 
which such select-man belongs. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



12. For the background of this act, see above, pp. xxiv-xxvi. The bill was introduced in October 
1817, when it was referred to the present session. Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, XXIV, 185. 



36 PUBLIC records May, 

An act defining the qualifications of Freemen. 13 [Stat. Conn., II, 303] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that every white male inhabitant of this 
State, of the age of twenty one years, who has the possession of real, or per- 
sonal estate, which by law is exempt from taxation, or pays taxes, or performs 
military duty, and sustains a good moral character, may, on procuring a certifi- 
cate thereof from the board constituted by law to examine the qualifications of 
freemen, be admitted free of this State, upon taking the oath required by law 
for freemen, any law to the contrary notwithstanding. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that no person shall be admitted a freeman in 
any town in this State, unless he shall have statedly resided in said town, at least 
four months next preceding the time when he offers himself for admission. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act for opening depositions. [Stat. Conn., II, 304] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the clerks of the several County and 
Superiour Courts of this State be, and they are hereby authorized and required 
to open any deposition directed to the courts of which they are respectively 



13. The manuscript bill contains documentation of two changes. In the first section, following the 
words "possession of," an entire phrase, "a freehold Estate of the value of seven dollars per annum or 
one hundred & thirty-four dollars personal Estate in the list of Estates for that year wherein he desires 
to be admitted a freeman, or is possessed of Estate as aforesaid" was struck and the words "real, or 
personal estate" substituted. Later in the same section, following the words "military duty." a passage 
reading "& is of quiet & peaceable behaviour & civil conversation," was also removed, and the words 
"and sustains a good moral character" substituted. The Council dissented to the bill, but concurred on 
the advice of a conference committee consisting of representatives James Stevens and Samuel Foote 
and assistant James Lanman. The manuscript bill is located in the .Archives. Civil Officers. Ser. 2. 
XIX. 18: the context of the two changes can be found in the Introduction and the legislative debates, 
above, pp. xvii-xix, and below, pp. 1 1 1-19; see also House Journal. June 2. 1 8 1 8. A version of the bill 
printed in Courant on May 26, 181 8. lacks the second section, which was included in the manuscript: 
alternate versions were apparently under consideration at different times, which might explain an 
unclear statement made by Shubael Griswold in his June 1 speech in debate, when he said that the bill 
did not address residency requirements. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 37 

clerks, either in vacation, or during the sessions of said courts, in open court, or 
elsewhere, as may be convenient. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act to secure the 
City of New-Haven from damage by fire. 14 [Stat. Conn., II, 304-5] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that all those parts of the City of New-Haven, 
lying north, west and east of a line beginning at the centre of George Street, one 
hundred and fifty feet west of the westerly line of Temple Street, and running 
easterly in the line parallel with Temple Street to a point, one hundred and fifty 
feet south of the southerly line of Crown Street, thence westerly in the line par- 
allel with Crown Street, and one hundred and fifty feet from the southerly side 
thereof, to a point, one hundred and fifty feet west of High Street, thence north- 
erly in a line parallel with High Street, one hundred and fifty feet westerly of 
the westerly side thereof to a point one hundred and fifty feet north of the 
northerly side of Elm Street, thence easterly in a line of, and parallel with Elm 
Street, and one hundred and fifty feet from the northerly side thereof, to a point 
one hundred and fifty feet easterly of State Street, thence southerly in a line 
parallel with State Street, and one hundred and fifty feet from the easterly side 
thereof, to a point one hundred and fifty feet northerly of Court Street, thence 
easterly in a line parallel with Court Street, and one hundred and fifty feet from 
the northerly side thereof, to a point one hundred and fifty feet easterly of Olive 
Street, shall be, and the same are hereby exempted from the provisions of the 
act to which this is an addition. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



14. For the October 1815 act altered here, see S.R., XVII, 437-38. 



38 public records May, 

An act concerning incorporated Manufacturing Companies. 15 [Stat. 
Conn., II, 305] 

Be it enacted by the Govemour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that neither the person, nor the private property of 
the stockholders of manufacturing companies, now incorporated in this State, 
shall be liable for, or on account of any contract, which shall be made by such 
company from and after the fourth day of July next, made for the sole benefit of 
said company: Provided, nevertheless, that none of said companies shall take 
benefit of this act, unless such as shall by the fourth day of July next, lodge a 
certificate with the town clerk of that town where the Factory of such company 
is situated, who is hereby directed to receive and record the same, containing 
the amount of the capital stock of such companies. — 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act relating to the costs due from prisoners confined in Newgate 
prison. [Stat. Conn., II, 306] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the keeper of Newgate prison, by the consent 
and advice of the overseers thereof, be, and he is hereby authorized to accept 
the note of any prisoner retained in said prison solely on account of costs of 
prosecution, for the amount of said costs, payable to the Treasurer of this State 
for the time being; and thereupon discharge said prisoner from confinement, 
whenever, in the opinion of said overseers, such prisoner is unable to satisfy 
said costs; and has also conducted well during the period of his confinement. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



15. In his speech opening the session, Gov. Wolcott called the legislators' attention to the need to 
improve the climate for business investment. A legislative committee responded by preparing this and 
the resolution on corporate shares below, pp. 39, 39n. In a May 30 debate on the bill, Republican 
leader James Stevens reiterated the governor's point that investors in other types of corporations 
should receive the protection granted here in addition to shareholders in banks. Below, pp. 108-9; 
Archives, Finance and Currency, Ser. 2, 1, 36; House Proceedings, Courant, June 9, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 39 

An act relating to Incorporated Banks. 16 [Stat. Conn., II, 306] 

Whereas doubts have been entertained, whether shares in banks, turnpike, 
and other incorporated companies, should be disposed of as personal, or real 
estate; Therefore, 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that all shares in Banks, Turnpike, manufactur- 
ing, and other incorporated companies in this State, shall hereafter, be 
considered as personal estate, and may be disposed of as other personal estate, 
unless otherwise directed in the act of incorporation. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act relating to the 
abatement and amendments of writs, reversal of judgment, &c. 17 [Stat. 
Conn., II, 307] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that the plaintiff, or petitioner in any 
action or petition brought and returnable to the Superiour, county, or city 
courts in this State, may amend the declaration, or bill, without cost, at any 
time within the three first days of the term of the court; provided, that such 
amendment should not change the form of the action. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that when any amendment shall be made as 
aforesaid, the defendant or respondent, shall, when the pleadings or answer are 
closed upon an issue in fact, be entitled to a continuance. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 



16. In his speech opening the session, Gov. Wolcott opined that the status of corporate shares as real 
or personal property "had important consequences in respect to the rule of succession" and recommended 
that the matter be settled by law: below, pp. 108-9. The result was the present act, drafted by the same 
legislative committee that prepared the one on manufacturing companies above, pp. 38, 38n. 

17. An unsuccessful attempt had been made to pass a similar law in 1816: Rejected Bills, 
1815-1817, Box 4, 1816, folder 3, doc. 23. Representative Elisha Phelps, who had introduced the 
bill, remarked that hastily-issued declarations accompanying writs often contained errors; "to 
amend them within the three first days of the term without payment of cost, provided the nature of 
the action is not changed, can produce no injury to any person." Mercury, June 9, 1818. 



40 PUBLIC records May, 

An act to alter the times of holding the Court of Common Pleas in the 

County of Tolland. 18 [Stat. Conn., II, 307] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that in future, from and after the first of October 
next, the times for holding the county court for the county of Tolland, shall be 
on the third Tuesday of January and June annually, instead of the fourth Tues- 
day of January and September, as now appointed by law. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act in addition to and alteration of an act, entitled An act for constitut- 
ing an[d] regulating courts, and for appointing the times and places for 
holding the same. 19 [Stat. Conn., II, 308] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the county courts in the several counties in 
this State, for the year ensuing, shall consist of a Judge and two Justices of the 
Quorum, and no more, to be appointed and commissioned for that purpose, any 
two of whom shall form a quorum, any law to the contrary notwithstanding. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act for the appointment of a Reporter of Judicial Decisions. 20 [Stat. 
Conn., II, 308] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that there shall be annually appointed, by the Su- 
preme Court of Errors of this State, a Reporter of the judicial decisions of said 



1 8. The old dates for the meeting of the court had been set in an act of May 1 804: Stat. Conn., 
1808, p. 214. 

19. The basic title had designated a judge and "two or more" justices of the quorum: Stat. 
Conn., 1808, p. 207. 

20. A virtually identical measure passed in May 1814 had been limited to four years; hence the 
present act. S.R., XVII, 54-55, 54n. Gov. Wolcott noted the importance of continuing the authorization 
of the reporter in his speech opening the session: below, p. 109. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 41 

court; and as a compensation for his services, he shall receive from the treasury 
of this State, the sum of three hundred dollars annually. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act to repeal an act, entitled An act to secure the rights of parents, mas- 
ters and guardians. — 21 [Stat. Conn., II, 309] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives in 
General Court assembled, that the said act be, and the same is hereby repealed. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act to repeal the act therein mentioned. 22 [Stat. Conn., II, 309] 

Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the act entitled "an act concerning side walks 
in cities," be, and the same is hereby repealed. 

General Assembly, May Session 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

Ordered that the Honourable Elizur Goodrich and Mr. Thomas Ward pres- 
ent the thanks of this General Assembly to the Rev. Harry Croswell for his 



21. In this and the next act, the Assembly repealed two wartime measures; see above, p. xxi. 
The one repealed here, which established various mechanisms to prevent the enlistment of minors 
into U.S. service without the consent of parents or masters, had been adopted in January 1815: see 
S.R., XVII, 284-85, 284n. In a debate on May 27, Federalist members defended the act as wisely 
protective of the rights of parents and masters and the prerogatives of the state; Republican and 
Tolerationist speakers, including the repeal's sponsor, James Stevens, castigated the act as 
unpatriotic and redolent of the partisan spirit of the Hartford Convention. The House voted 94-68 in 
favor of repeal. Mercury, June 2, 1818; Courant, June 2, 1818. 

22. For the wartime act of May 1813 repealed here, see S.R., XVI, 232, 232n; the bill to repeal 
had been introduced by James Stevens on June 1: Mercury, June 9, 1818. 



42 PUBLIC records May, 

sermon delivered before the General Assembly on the day of the anniversary 
election, and request a copy thereof, that it may be printed. 23 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Elisha Babcock and Son and Frederick D. 
Bolles and Company, be, and they are hereby appointed printers for this As- 
sembly during the present session. 24 

Resolved by this Assembly, that it be, and it is hereby recommended to the 
people of this State, who are qualified to vote in town or freemens meetings, to as- 
semble in their respective towns, on the fourth day of July next at nine oclock in 
the morning, at their usual place of holding town or freemen's meetings, and after 
having chosen their presiding officer, then and there to elect, by ballot, as many 
Delegates as said towns now choose Representatives to the General Assembly, 
who shall meet in convention at the State-House in Hartford, on the fourth 
Wednesday of August next; and when so convened, shall, if it be by them deemed 
expedient, proceed to the formation of a constitution of civil government for the 
people of this State: a copy of which constitution, when so formed, shall be by said 
convention forthwith transmitted to each town clerk in this State, to be by him sub- 
mitted to the qualified voters in the town to which he belongs, assembled at such 
time as said convention may designate; which time shall not be less than one week, 
nor more than three weeks from the rising of said convention, for their approbation 
and ratification: And said constitution, when ratified and approved by such 



23. It was published as A Sermon Preached at the Anniversary Election, Hartford, May 14, 
1818 (Hartford, 1818), on Luke XX, 25: "Render, therefore, unto Caesar, the things which be 
Caesar's, and unto God, the things which be God's." Croswell (1778-1858), a native of West 
Hartford, had been the editor of Federalist newspapers in New York state before entering the clergy; 
he was currently rector of Trinity Church in New Haven. He was apparently rewarded for support of 
the Tolerationist movement by an invitation to preach the Election Sermon. Francis A. Drake, 
Dictionary of American Biography... (Boston, 1879), p. 233; Pasley, Tyranny of Printers, p. 377. 
The order of service for the May 1818 election day is extant: Order of Religious Exercises Election 
Day (n.p., [1818]). 

24. Babcock and Bolles were the publishers of the American Mercury and The Times 
respectively, Hartford newspapers associated with the Republican party and the Tolerationist 
movement. The motion was originally to appoint Babcock; Bolles was added during the House's 
consideration of the matter. Reformers supported the measure in debate, while Federalists opposed 
it, arguing that the Assembly in recent years had customarily sought the cheapest printer, 
sometimes Babcock and sometimes Hudson & Goodwin, printers of the Federalist Courant. During 
the debate, Republican James Stevens was called upon to clarify his use of the words "evil eye" in 
regard to Federalist representative Shubael Griswold; House speaker Gideon Tomlinson and 
Stevens explained that the phrase "eagle eye" was intended. House Proceedings of May 15, 1818: 
Courant, May 19, 1 8 1 8, Mercury, May 19, 1818; "Letter from a Member," Courant, June 16, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 43 

majority of said qualified voters convened as aforesaid, as shall be directed by said 
convention, shall be and remain the supreme law of this State. 25 

And be it further Resolved, that it shall be the duty of the select-men in the 
several towns aforesaid, to give legal notice of the time, place, and object of 
holding town meetings as aforesaid, whether for the election of delegates, or 
for the ratification of the constitution: and the votes in the meetings for the 
choice of delegates shall be counted, and certificates of election shall be sup- 
plied to said delegates, in the same manner, as is now practised in the election 
of Representatives to the General Assembly. And the presiding officer chosen 
by said meetings for ratifying the constitution as aforesaid, shall, as soon as 
may be, transmit by the representatives of their respective towns, to the Gen- 
eral Assembly next after such meetings are held, a certified statement of the 
number of votes given in said towns, on the question of ratifying said constitu- 
tion, both affirmative and negative, and a like statement, said presiding officer 
shall also lodge with the town clerks of their respective towns; which votes shall 
be returned to said Assembly, and counted in the same manner, as is by law pro- 
vided for returning and counting the votes for Governour of this State. 

And be it further Resolved, that two thirds of the whole number of delegates 
so elected, shall form a quorum, and said convention shall choose a President 
and clerk; and the clerk of said convention having been sworn to a faithful dis- 
charge of the duties of his office, shall proceed to administer to the President 
and members thereof, the following oath, or affirmation, viz. 

"You being chosen delegates to this convention, for the purpose, if need be, 
of framing and devising a constitution of civil government for the people of the 
State of Connecticut, do solemnly swear, (or affirm) that you will faithfully 
discharge the trust confided to you." And said delegates shall be allowed the 
same fees for travel and attendance on said convention, as is now by law al- 
lowed to the representatives to the General Assembly. 

Be it further Resolved, that all such persons as are, or may, at the time of 
either of said meetings, be qualified by law, and duly certified as such by the 
lawful board for said purpose, to be made freemen of this State, may then and 
there be admitted and sworn, and shall be authorized to act as such in the busi- 
ness of said meetings. 



25. For the background and legislative context of the calling of the Constitutional Convention 
of 1818, see above, pp. xix-xxi; the major debates on the matter appear below, pp. 120-42. 
Regarding specific legal arrangements referenced in the following resolutions, the current 
attendance fee for members of the House of Representatives was $2.00 per day and the travel 
allowance for members of the Assembly was nine cents a mile. S.R., XVII, 326; Stat. Conn., 1808, 
p. 293. Current procedures for counting and reporting votes for representatives and for the governor 
can be found in ibid., pp. 245-46, 253-57. 



44 public records May, 

Whereas the following votes have been passed in the Council of this State, 
to wit; 26 

"Voted, that it is expedient that the Council Chambers in Hartford and New- 
Haven, should be open for the admission of spectators, during the sessions of 
the Legislature, so soon as proper and convenient accommodations can be pro- 
vided for that purpose;" 

"Voted, that in the opinion of the Council, such accommodations may be 
provided by the formation of a Bar of suitable dimensions in the Council 
Chamber at Hartford, and by the formation of a like Bar in the Council Cham- 
ber at New-Haven, or by the construction of Galleries." 

Whereupon, Resolved by this Assembly, that the Honourable Sylvester 
Wells and Michael Olcott Esquire, be, and the same are hereby appointed a 
committee, to form and devise the plan of said Bar or Gallery within the Coun- 
cil Chamber at Hartford, and in what manner said alterations can best be 
effected; which plan shall be submitted by the committee to His Excellency the 
Governour of this State, and upon being approved by him, shall be thereupon 
deposited with the Secretary of this State; and thereupon, said committee are 
hereby authorized and empowered to procure said alterations effected in con- 
formity with the plan, and report their doings, together with the expence 
thereof, to the General Assembly in October next. 

Resolved further, that the Honourable William Bristol and Thomas Ward 
Esquire, be, and the same are hereby appointed a committee to form and devise 
the plan of said Bar or Gallery within the council Chamber in the City of New- 
Haven, and in what manner said alterations can best be effected; which plan 
shall be submitted by the committee to His Excellency the Governour of this 
State, and upon being approved by him, shall be thereupon deposited with the 
Secretary of this State; and thereupon, said committee are hereby authorized 
and empowered to procure said alterations effected, in conformity with the 



26. On May 12, 1818, the editors of the Courant had predicted that "one of the first acts of the 
Reformers will be ... to throw wide open the doors of the Council Chamber, that every thing may be 
'free as air and light as day; and the people no longer kept in the dark, as they have been for one 
hundred and fifty years past." The Council, with its new Republican-Tolerationist majority, had 
adopted the resolutions quoted here; on May 27 the House debated the measure, proponents arguing 
that secrecy was not necessary while conducting public business and citing precedents in other 
states for opening the doors of the upper legislative house. Federalist members went along with the 
measure, but former Council member Aaron Austin noted that since the assistants simply discussed 
matters — rather than orating — Council proceedings were unlikely to be particularly entertaining to 
the public. Shubael Griswold. ironically referring to the new Tolerationist control of the Council, 
stated that the doors should be opened immediately to enable outside scrutiny. Records of the 
Governor and Council, May 1818; Mercury. June 2, 1818. On June 2. the Times, approving the 
action, opined that "Secrecy is incompatible with every idea of a deliberative Assembly, and is as 
unjust and dangerous to the members of a legislative body, as it is to the rights and interests of the 
people." Representatives Wells and Olcott reported in May 1819 that the bar had been installed in 
Hartford at a cost of $53.31. Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, III, 190. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 45 

plan, and report their doings, together with the expence thereof, to the General 
Assembly in October next. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that for the purpose of choosing Representatives 
in the Congress of the United States, each state shall by its Legislature, be di- 
vided into a number of districts equal to the number of Representatives to 
which such state may be entitled. The districts shall be formed of contiguous 
territory, and contain as nearly as may be, an equal number of inhabitants enti- 
tled by the Constitution to be represented. In each district, the qualified voters 
shall elect one representative and no more: That for the purpose of appointing 
Electors for the President and Vice-President of the United States, in each dis- 
trict entitled to elect a representative in the Congress of the United States, the 
persons qualified to vote for representatives, shall appoint one Elector and no 
more. The additional two Electors to which each state is entitled, shall be ap- 
pointed in such manner as the Legislator [sic] thereof may direct. The Electors 
when convened shall have power, in case any of them appointed as above pre- 
scribed, shall fail to attend for the purposes of their said appointment, on the day 
prescribed for giving their votes for President and Vice-President of the United 
States, to appoint another or others to act in the place of him or them so failing to 
attend. Neither the districts for choosing representatives, nor those for appoint- 
ing Electors, shall be altered in any state, until a census and apportionment of 
representatives under it, subsequent to the division of the states into districts 
shall be made. The division of states into districts hereby provided for, shall take 
place immediately after this amendment shall be adopted and ratified as a part of 
the Constitution of the United States, and successively immediately afterwards, 
whenever a census and apportionment of representatives under it, shall be made. 
The division of each state into districts for the purposes both of choosing repre- 
sentatives, and of appointing Electors, shall be altered agreeable to the 
provisions of this amendment, and on no other occasion. 27 

27. The Connecticut General Assembly had rejected related amendments to the U.S. 
Constitution proposed by North Carolina and Massachusetts in 1816and 1817: see S.R., XVIII, 36- 
37, 37n, 192, 192n. The amendment recommended here followed almost word for word one 
proposed by New Jersey in February 1817 and endorsed by North Carolina in December 1817. New 
Jersey's proposal differed from the earlier versions only in making the number of districts for 
presidential and vice presidential electors equal to the number of districts for U.S. representatives 
rather than to the total number of electors, with the mode of selection for the additional two seats 
(which reflected the states' two senatorial positions) left to the state legislatures. Gov. Wolcott 
referred the New Jersey proposal to the Assembly in October 1817; in a subsequent debate, the 
legislators concentrated on the mode of electing U.S. representatives. Opponents of districting, 
presumably Federalists, argued that the state should retain its power to set the mode of election as it 
saw fit and contended that the current system of at-large election allowed Connecticut "to throw her 
whole force into Congress," because under a system of districting, "men of different political 
parties might be elected." They also argued that Connecticut had only one general interest, with no 
local variations that might require district representation in Congress. Advocates of districting 
echoed arguments made by Republican speakers in May 1817, emphasizing the importance of 



46 public records May, 

Resolved, that our Senators in the Congress of the United States, be in- 
structed, and our Representatives requested to endeavour to obtain the said 
amendment to the constitution of the United States. 



bringing "the elective franchise as nearly to the people as we could, to enable them to judge of the 
merits of those appointed to govern." In response to their opponents' arguments, they agreed that the 
current system "did indeed bring forward [Connecticut's] whole strength. It enabled the dominant 
party to exclude any section of the State from a representation, which was not of the same political 
complexion with the majority. Was this right?" They concluded that "Every party had a right to a 
fair representation. — The right of suffrage ought to be guaranteed to the people: it should never be 
in the power of any Legislature to alter it . . . This amendment secured to the minority, in every 
State, their privileges, and protected their rights." After this discussion, the Assembly postponed 
further consideration of the matter to the May 1818 session. 

In May, after a further referral by Gov. Wolcott, the Assembly appointed a committee to con- 
sider the matter. That committee's report, which exists in both a draft and a final version, focused 
on the appointment of presidential and vice presidential electors. After opining that "the mode of 
electing this important officer [the President] should only be uniform throughout the United 
States but also, calculated to give a fair, full and decisive expression of the public will at the time 
when an Election takes place," the committee entered into an analysis of what it considered to be 
unacceptable diversity in the practice among the states and the "the influence of dangerous com- 
binations, either among Individuals or States to influence the choice of Chief Magistrate" under 
the present system. The committee then recommended the bill for the present resolution. After the 
resolution passed, a Federalist commentator predictably lamented that it "will deprive this state of 
the right which we now possess of regulating the mode of choosing our representatives to congress, 
and the appointment of electors ..." He need not have worried, however, for the amendment never 
succeeded; the gradual adoption of the districting system by individual states led the cessation of 
proposals for such an amendment to the national Constitution. Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, 
XXII, 124, 128-29, 131-33; Wolcott's speeches in Mercury, Oct. 14, 1817, and below, p. 109; 
House Proceedings of Oct. 22 in Herald, Nov. 11, 1817, Journal, Nov. 11, 1817; "A Letter from a 
Member," Courant, June 16, 1818; Ames, Proposed Amendments, p. 47. 

Also under consideration in May 1818 were amendments to the U.S. Constitution relating to 
another matter, the compensation for U.S. congressmen. In August and December 1817 respec- 
tively, Kentucky and Tennessee had transmitted a proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution 
"That no law varying the compensation of the members of the congress of the United States, shall 
take effect until the time for which the members of the house of representatives of that congress 
by which the law was passed, shall have expired." This was closely related in wording to an 
amendment initially proposed in 1789, which was still under consideration by the states and 
which was not adopted until 1992 as the Twenty-Seventh Amendment. In a House debate, legisla- 
tors discussed this proposal in relationship to the recent controversies over the 1816 
Congressional Compensation Act (S.R., XVIII, xxv), with arguments going back and forth about 
whether this issue was appropriate for constitutional resolution or whether it should be left, in the 
words of Jonathan W. Edwards, to "the prudence of our rulers and the good sense of the people, 
who had the power to correct any abuse that might occur." Although the House voted in support of 
the amendment in October, the Council dissented; in May 1818 the legislators voted, on a com- 
mittee recommendation, to postpone further consideration until October 1818. We have found no 
further evidence of action on the matter. Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, XXII, 125-27, 130; 
House Proceedings of Monday, Oct. 20, 1817, in Journal, Oct. 28, 1817, Herald, Oct. 28, 1817; 
Ames, Proposed Amendments, pp. 34-35, 333-34; Skeen, 1816, p. 49. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 47 

Resolved, that His Excellency the Governour of this State, be requested to 
forward a copy of the preceeding resolution to each of our Senators and Repre- 
sentatives in the Congress of the United States, and also to the Governours of 
the several states, with a request that the same may be laid before their respec- 
tive Legislatures for their consideration and adoption. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that a tax of one cent on the dollar be, and is 
hereby laid upon the list of 1817, to defray the expences of government for the 
current year, to be paid into the treasury by the 20th day of February next. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Secretary be, and he hereby is autho- 
rized to employ a clerk to assist him in his office during the session of the 
General Assembly, who shall be entitled to receive the same compensation as 
allowed to a constable or messenger attending the House of Representatives. 28 

Resolved by this Assembly, that all officers who are by law made receivers 
of duties, who shall pay the same to the Treasurer of this State, by the first day 
of June next, shall be capable of holding and exercising the offices, by means 
of which, they may have become receivers of such duties, any law or usage to 
the contrary notwithstanding. 29 

Resolved, that the Supreme Court of Errors by law to be holden at Hartford 
on the first Tuesday in June next, be, and the same is hereby adjourned until the 
second Tuesday of June next, then to be holden at Hartford; and all actions, 
suits, process and other business depending before, or returnable to said court, 
shall be then and there heard, and proceeded with, in the same manner, as if 
said court had been held at the time prescribed by law. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Treasurer be, and he is hereby autho- 
rized, if he judge it expedient, to deposit the monies in the Treasury of this 
State, in either or both of the banks in the City of Hartford, for safekeeping, any 
former Resolve or practice notwithstanding. 30 



28. Constables attending the General Assembly were allowed $2.00 per day. S.R., XVIII, 104. 

29. The law regulating the payment of duties barred receivers who were delinquent as of May 
20 from holding their office for a year: Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 242^3. This resolution was probably 
related to a legislative debate about delinquents; the debate had partisan overtones, with specific 
reference to the affairs of former New Haven representative Seth P. Staples: House Proceedings of 
May 16, 18, 1818: Mercury, May 19, 26, 1818; Courant, May 26, 1818. 

30. The banks referenced here are the Hartford Bank and the Phoenix Bank. 



48 public records May, 

This Assembly do appoint Messrs. Elisha Colt, Isaac Spencer 2d and Michael 
Olcott, Auditors to adjust and settle the accounts of the late Treasurer, Andrew 
Kingsbury Esquire, up to the 22d day of May instant, agreeable to his request. 31 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the official bond executed by Andrew 
Kingsbury Esquire late Treasurer of this State, on entering the office, be can- 
celled or given up, his accounts having been audited and settled. 

Resolved, that the Legislature will meet for the purpose of hearing the peti- 
tion of Joshua Leavitt against Huldah Leavitt, on Thursday the 28th day of 
May 1818, the same having been already begun. — 32 

Resolved by this Assembly, that at the opening of each future session of As- 
sembly, there shall be appointed a joint committee of both houses, consisting 
of one member from each county, with such gentlemen as the Governour and 
Council shall appoint, to which committee shall be referred all petitions relat- 
ing to Turnpike roads and bridges, to report the facts with their opinion 
thereon, and that from and after the rising of this Assembly, no such petition 
shall be heard before both houses, unless by special permission of both 
branches of the Legislature. 33 

Resolved, that the Connecticut Asylum for the education and instruction of 
deaf and dumb persons, have liberty to solicit contributions in the several religious 
societies of all denominations in this State, on some Sabbath or Lords day in the 
month of October next; and that His Excellency the Governour of this State be, 
and he is hereby requested to issue his proclamation designating the time or times 
when, and the purposes for which such contributions may be made. 34 



31. Kingsbury had recently failed to gain re-election as treasurer; Spencer was his successor: 
see above, pp. 7, 7n. 

32. For this matter, see below, pp. 60-61. 

33. The Council inserted the word "such" in the resolution and the House concurred; see 
Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, VIII, 40-41, for the draft resolution and the appointment of the committee 
members for the present session. 

34. The Connecticut Asylum has been incorporated in October 1816 and had been the subject 
of several legislative actions since then: S.R., XVIII, 27-28, 27n, 1 19-20, 1 19-20n, 190. On May 
28, Gov. Wolcott "and nearly all the members of the General Assembly" attended an open 
examination of the asylum's pupils; the "answers of six or seven pupils to the same questions, 
communicated to all at once by the same signs, demonstrated that they understood what they wrote, 
and were not repeating phrases committed to memory. Their answers were expressed in different 
words, and were correct beyond what we could have expected." Mirror, June 1, 1818; see also 
Times, June 2, 1818. At the event Thomas Gallaudet delivered a speech written by the asylum's 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 49 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the commissioners appointed on the 
Ousatonic River Turnpike road, be directed to examine into the situation of the 
Turnpike gate lately erected on said Turnpike road near Bennett's Bridge, so 
called, if they judge it reasonable that the same ought to be removed, they are 
hereby authorized to remove it, and so to locate it, as that persons passing on 
the middle Turnpike road from Newtown to Southbury and from Southbury to 
Newtown need not be obliged to pass the same, or pay toll thereat. 35 

Whereas the towns of New-London, Northstonington and Goshen have not 
returned their grand lists on levy A.D. 1817, to the Controller of Public Ac- 
counts for this State by the time limited by law; therefore, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Controller of this State be, and he is 
hereby authorized to receive the grand lists of said towns on levy A.D. 1 8 1 7, in 
the same manner as though they had been sent within the time limited by law, 
and that the fines and penalties be remitted to said towns of New-London, 
North Stonington and Goshen or the listers thereof. 

Whereas William Page of the town of Sherman, collector of the state tax in said 
town, for the year 1817, failed of paying in said tax to the Treasury of this State, in 
the time limited by law, by reason of not receiving his warrant in due season, and 
also by reason of sickness, which rendered him unable to collect said tax in due 



tutor Laurent Clerc on "the art of teaching the Deaf and Dumb," published as An Address, Written 
by Mr. Clerc and Read by his Request at a Public Examination of the Pupils in the Connecticut 
Asylum, before the Governor, and both Houses of the Legislature... (Hartford, 1818). 

On June 3 the House considered a petition by the asylum, dated May 16, 1818, requesting ad- 
ditional legislative support, particularly for a larger building to house the students and instructors 
and to provide more school rooms; speaking in favor of the petition, Jonathan W. Edwards opined 
that the May 28 demonstration proved that the asylum had "succeeded beyond all expectations," 
and suggested that support could possibly come from the School Fund. In early June the House 
considered two resolutions on the asylum prepared by a legislative committee, including the one 
adopted here; the other would have given the balance of the money appropriated under the Octo- 
ber 1816 "Act on Literature and Religion" (S.R., XVII, 113-15, 1 13n) to the asylum. Prominent 
Federalists, including Edwards and Shubael Griswold, spoke in favor of the petition; leading Re- 
publicans James Stevens and Samuel A. Foote spoke against it. Further consideration of the 
petition, the committee report, and the second resolution was postponed, and the request eventu- 
ally died. Courant, June 16, 1818; Mercury, June 23, 1818; Rejected Bills, Box 5, 1818-1821, 
folder 1, docs. 14- 15, 20, 22. 

35. This turnpike company had been incorporated in May 1798: S.R., IX, 202-4, 204n; Bennett's 
Bridge connected Newtown and Southbury: Pease and Niles, Gazetteer, p. 183. According to Wood 
(Turnpikes, pp. 344, 346), the term "middle Turnpike" was used to connote the middle route between 
New York and Boston, of which the Boston Turnpike was part; the Ousatonic Turnpike was in the 
southwestern part of the state, while the Boston Turnpike was in the northeast. 



50 PUBLIC records May, 

time to comply with the requisitions of said limitation; whereby, he is not entitled 
by law, to the usual fees allowed to collectors of said state taxes; therefore, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Treasurer of Connecticut, for the time 
being, be directed, and is hereby directed to pay to said William Page, out of any 
monies in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated the full sum that would have 
been due to him by collecting said state tax, and complying as the law directs. — 

Whereas a number of persons in the County of Litchfield, have associated 
for the promotion of Agriculture, rural economy and domestic manufactures, 
and have signed the following articles of association, viz. 36 

Sec. 1. The name of this society shall be "The Agricultural Society of the 
County of Litchfield;" and the objects of the society are the promotion and im- 
provement of agriculture, rural economy, and domestic manufactures. 

Sec. 2. Every member of this society shall subscribe these articles, or a copy 
thereof, attested by the recording Secretary; and shall pay at the time of sub- 
scribing, or within one month thereafter, to the treasurer, for the use of this 
society, one dollar; he shall also pay in like manner, on or before the Wednes- 
day next after the second Tuesday of February annually, one dollar, so long as 
he continues a member; and whenever a member chooses to withdraw, he shall 
have liberty so to do, on giving notice in writing to the recording Secretary, and 
paying all arrears and dues, including the then current year. 

Sec. 3. The officers of the society shall consist of a President, five Vice- 
Presidents, a corresponding Secretary, a recording Secretary, a Treasurer, and 
an Auditor, to be chosen by ballot, and such other officers as the By-laws of the 
society shall direct. 

Sec. 4. The first meeting of the society shall be holden at the Court-House in 
Litchfield, on the Wednesday next after the second Tuesday in February, Anno 
Domini 1 8 1 9, at which meeting, and at any future stated meeting of the society, 
the members present shall have power to make such By-laws and regulations as 
they shall deem expedient for carrying into effect the objects of this society. 

Sec. 5. No salary, or other pecuniary reward shall be allowed to any officer 
or committee of the society, for discharging their official duties; neither shall 
any contribution, in any form, be exacted by this society from its members, ex- 
cepting as is herein provided. 



36. At its October 1817 session, the Assembly, on the prompting of the governor, had encouraged 
the formation of county agricultural societies: S.R., XVIII, 268-69, 268n. For the petition from the 
Litchfield group that led to this action, signed by Elijah Boardman and Frederick Wolcott and dated 
June 1, 1818, see Archives, Industry, Ser. 2, 1, 56. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 51 

Sec. 6. No alteration shall be made in any of these articles of association, 
except at some stated meeting of the society; and all such alterations shall be 
submitted at one stated meeting, and shall not be definitively acted upon until 
the next stated meeting of the society; and in all cases, two thirds of the mem- 
bers present shall concur in such alterations. 

And whereas the said society met at Litchfield on the eleventh day of February 
1818, and were then and there organized agreeably to said articles; now to extend 
as much as possible the public benefits of said society, and render them permanent, 

Resolved, that those who have subscribed the said articles, or who may 
hereafter subscribe them, shall be, and are hereby constituted a body politic 
and corporate, by the name of "The Agricultural Society of the County of 
Litchfield," to be governed and regulated by the aforesaid articles, and by that 
name shall be capable in law to hold property of any nature to an amount not 
exceeding twenty thousand dollars, and manage, dispose of, and alien the same 
at pleasure; to sue and be sued, to plead and be impleaded in any courts whatso- 
ever; to have and use a common seal, such as may be agreed upon by the 
corporation; to make and carry into effect such By-laws and regulations as may 
be deemed expedient to manage the affairs, and effect the objects of the soci- 
ety, not repugnant to this act, or the laws of this State or the United States; and 
generally, to do any act appertaining to the business of the society. 

And it is further Resolved, that the proceedings of the meeting of said society 
holden on the 1 1th day of February 1818, be binding upon the society, in the same 
manner as though, they were had by the corporation after the passing of this act. 

Provided nevertheless, that this grant be not in force until adopted by the 
said society at a regular meeting, as the basis of their future proceedings. Pro- 
vided, also, that this grant may be altered, or repealed, at any time by the 
General Assembly. 



52 public records May, 

Whereas Leman Stone Esquire, and a number of other persons principally 
residing in the county of New-Haven, have associated and formed themselves 
into a society for the promotion of Agriculture in the State of Connecticut; now 
to make said society permanent, and extend as much as possible, the benefits of 
said society. 37 

Resolved, that those persons who do now belong to said society and who 
may hereafter belong to the same, and their successors, shall be, and are hereby 
constituted a body politic by the name of "The New-Haven County Agricul- 
tural Society;" and by that name shall be capable in law, to hold property of any 
nature, to an amount not exceeding twenty thousand dollars, and manage, dis- 
pose of, and alien the same at pleasure; to sue and be sued, to plead and be 
impleaded in any courts whatever; to have and use a common seal, such as may 
be agreed upon by the corporation; to make and carry into effect such By-laws 
and regulations as may be deemed expedient to manage the affairs and effect 
the objects of the society, not repugnant to this act, or the laws of this State, or 
the United States, and generally, to do any act appertaining to the business of 
said society; and the members of said society are hereby authorized to meet at 
the State-House in the City of New-Haven on the second Tuesday of June 
1818. to organize themselves under this resolve. 

Provided nevertheless, that this grant may be altered or repealed at any time 
by the General Assembly. 

Upon the petition of James T. Bacon of the town of Burlington in Hartford 
County, shewing to this Assembly, that on or about the 20th day of December 
1812, he was lawfully married to one Lydia Curtis of said Burlington, with 
whom he has continued to live in the faithful performance of all the duties of a 
husband; that the said Lydia, since her said marriage, has continued greatly to 
abuse the petitioner by profane and obscene language; that she has threatened 



37. The society had been formed in 1794, consisting of individuals from different parts of the 
state. Since then it had met regularly, adopted constitutions, encouraged communications about 
agricultural experiments, and published transactions. Originally named "A Society for Promoting 
Agriculture in the State of Connecticut." the group, which included Stone. David Humphreys. 
Henry W. Edwards, and Nathan Smith, had requested incorporation in a October 14. 1817 petition 
under the name of "The Agricultural Society of the State of Connecticut." Since the Assembly had 
recently resolved to encourage the formation of county agricultural societies (S.R, XVIII. 268-69. 
268n). and since the society centered on New Haven, the legislators incorporated the group under a 
more limited title. The society' began to sponsor agricultural shows around 1819 and records of its 
activities can be found until mid-century. Archives, Industry, Ser. 2, I, 58: Edward H. Jenkins. 
"Connecticut Agriculture." in Osbom. History- of Connecticut, II, 353-55. For an unsuccessful 
1816 attempt by the society to secure a legislative appropriation from the Phoenix Bank's bonus, 
see Rejected Bills, 1815-1817. Box 4. 1816. folder 2. doc. 1. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 53 

to kill and destroy the petitioner and other persons living with him; that in exe- 
cution of such threats, she has often struck and beaten him with dangerous 
weapons; that she once attempted to stab him with a fork, at an other time, as- 
saulted him with an ax, and swore she would be the death of him; that said 
Lydia has threatened to burn the petitioner's dwelling-house, and has actually 
attempted to burn the same; — And further shewing, that he is the father of two 
children whose morals are in danger of being corrupted by said Lydia, that she 
has abused said children and threatened to take away their lives, praying this 
Assembly to grant him a divorce from said Lydia, as by petition on file. 38 

The said petition was legally served upon the said Lydia, and returned to the 
present session of this Assembly. The parties appeared and were fully heard 
thereupon; and this Assembly do find the matters stated as facts in said peti- 
tion, are true, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said James T Bacon be, and he hereby is 
divorced from said Lydia Bacon, and the marriage contract between the said 
James and Lydia is hereby rendered null and void. 

Be it further Resolved, that the certain piece or parcel of land lying in said 
Burlington, which the said Lydia owned at the time of her said marriage, and 
which remains unsold, be and remain to her free and clear of any right, title or 
claim thereto in favour of said James T. Bacon, in consequence of his marriage 
with said Lydia. 

Upon the petition of William Buell, Frederick Wolcott and others their asso- 
ciates, inhabitants of the town of Litchfield in the County of Litchfield, 
representing to this Assembly, that on account of their local situation and com- 
pact settlement, and on other accounts hereafter mentioned, they are, as they 
conceive, in an unusual degree exposed to injury from fire; that all the dwell- 
ing-houses in the village excepting three are built of wood; that the houses in 
the principal streets are as contiguous as they are in many of the streets of our 
cities; that the public schools which for many years have been established in 
the Village, make a great addition to the ordinary population of the inhabitants; 
that for this and for other reasons, it is presumed there are more fires kept in the 
houses in the Village than are ordinarily kept in the same number of houses in 
other places; that there are several mechanic trades established in the centre of 
the Village, which from their nature greatly increase the hazard, praying that 
the inhabitants living within the following limits may be incorporated by the 



38. Bacon's petition occasioned a May 26 debate in the House in which members made general 
remarks about appropriate grounds and procedures for divorce, in addition to the specifics of the 
case, before granting a total rather than a partial divorce. Mercury, June 2, 1818. 



54 PUBLIC records May, 

name of The Corporation of the Village of Litchfield, viz. Beginning one rod 
north of the dwelling-house of Mrs. Ruth Smith, from thence due east to 
Bantam River, thence following said river on the east bank thereof to the bridge 
southwest of the house of Samuel Sheldon, thence northwesterly to the mouth 
of the brook which runs next west of the Village, thence northerly following 
said brook to the bridge on the highway near the tan-works of Thomas 
Trowbridge, thence due north to the northwest corner of the Village, thence 
due east to the place of beginning: Also praying, that said inhabitants may be 
authorized to adopt such regulations as they may deem expedient, not inconsis- 
tent with the laws of this State, with a view to protect themselves from injury 
from fire; and that they may be authorized to regulate and repair the public 
side- walks, or foot- ways, and shade-trees within said limits, and prevent cattle, 
sheep, swine, geese and other animals from going at large therein, under suit- 
able penalties; and also, that they may be authorized, at any regular meeting, to 
levy taxes for the purpose of accomplishing the objects aforesaid, as per peti- 
tion on file, dated the 29th day of April A.D. 1818, will appear; 39 

Resolved by this Assembly, that all the inhabitants of the said town of Litch- 
field, residing and dwelling within the following bounds, viz. Beginning one 
rod north of the dwelling-house of Mrs. Ruth Smith, from thence due east to 
Bantam River, thence following said river on the east bank thereof to the bridge 
southwest of the house of Samuel Sheldon, thence northwesterly to the mouth 
of the brook which runs next west of the Village, thence northerly following 
said brook, to the bridge on the highway near the Tan-works of Thomas 
Trowbridge, thence due north to the northwest corner of the Village, thence 
due east to the place of beginning, shall be, and the same are hereby ordained, 
constituted and declared to be from time to time, forever hereafter, one body 
corporate in fact and in name, by the name of The Corporation of the Village of 
Litchfield, and by that name, they and their successors forever, shall and may 
have perpetual succession, and shall be persons in law, capable of suing and 
being sued, pleading and being impleaded in all suits of what nature soever. 

And for the better government of said corporation, there shall be a meeting 
of said corporation holden annually on the first Tuesday of September, at 
which time the officers of said corporation shall be chosen, to hold their offices 
until the expiration of the month of September then next, unless others shall be 
chosen in their stead. The first meeting of said corporation shall be holden at 
such time and place as shall be designated by a notice signed by Frederick 
Wolcott of said Litchfield, which notice shall be printed in a News-paper pub- 
lished in said Litchfield at least ten days before said meeting, at which meeting 



39. The petition, well-summarized here, can be found in Archives, Towns and Lands, Ser. 2, III, 1 3. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 55 

last aforesaid the first officers of the corporation shall be chosen, to continue in 
office until the first annual meeting of the corporation, and the said Frederick 
Wolcott shall preside at said first meeting. 

The officers of said corporation shall consist of a President, Treasurer and 
Clerk, to be chosen by ballot. And no person shall be permitted to vote in any 
meeting of said corporation unless he resides within the local limits aforesaid, 
and unless he shall be assessed in the manner herein after provided for the pur- 
pose of taxation to defray the expences of said corporation. 

Special meetings of said corporation may be called at any time by the Presi- 
dent, or in case of his death, absence, or resignation, by the Treasurer, notice being 
given by the person calling said meeting, at least three days before the same is to 
be holden, by posting a notification thereof on the public sign-post in said Village. 

And said corporation in legal meeting assembled shall have power to levy 
taxes on the inhabitants residing within the limits of said corporation, and on 
the estate of persons living without said limits, which may be situate within the 
same, in the manner herein after provided, for the purpose of defraying such 
expences as may be incurred in the purchase of Fire-Engines, Fire-Hooks, 
Ladders, and such other implements as said corporation shall deem necessary 
to protect said Village against fire; and for the purpose of repairing the public 
side-walks, or foot- ways in said Village; and for the purpose of sinking wells 
and placing pumps therein. — The taxes to be levied as aforesaid, shall be laid 
in the manner following, that is to say, a Board of Assessors consisting of three 
persons, to be appointed by the county court for the County of Litchfield, shall 
make an assessment of the property within said limits belonging to each owner 
thereof, the amount of which said assessment shall be fixed by the said board 
of Assessors with reference to the comparative danger of destruction by fire to 
which such property may be exposed, and also with reference to the benefits 
conferred; which said assessment shall be made under oath, and under the 
hands of the said assessors, and returned to the Treasurer of said corporation; 
and the taxes to be levied shall be laid on such assessment; said assessors shall 
have power to alter said Assessment at discretion, not oftener than once in each 
year, and shall hold their said appointment during the pleasure of said county 
court. Provided however, that if any person living within the limits of said corpo- 
ration, or who shall have any property situate therein, which shall be assessed as 
aforesaid, shall be a judge of said county court, such judge shall be incapable of 
acting with said court in making the appointment of assessors as aforesaid. 

Said corporation, in legal meeting assembled, shall have power to choose a 
collector or collectors to collect such taxes as said corporation may levy, who 
having received a warrant for that purpose signed by the President of said cor- 
poration, shall have the same powers as collectors of town taxes by law have, 



56 PUBLIC records May, 

and shall be accountable to said corporation in the same manner as collectors 
of town taxes are by law accountable to the selectmen: And in case any collec- 
tor shall not perform the trust committed to him, but shall fail of collecting 
such tax according to the terms of the warrant committed to him, on complaint 
thereof, made by the Treasurer to the President, he shall issue his warrant under 
his hand directed to the sheriff of the County of Litchfield, or his deputy, to dis- 
train the sums or rates neglected by such collector, to be collected or paid out of 
the estate of said collector. 

In case property situate within the limits of said corporation, belonging to 
persons residing without said limits, shall be assessed and taxes laid thereon by 
said corporation, which shall be neglected to be paid, such property, or so much 
thereof, as may be necessary to pay said taxes with the legal fees of the collector, 
shall be sold in the manner provided by law in case of property of non-residents 
who neglect or refuse to pay taxes assessed thereon by any town in this State. 

And the Treasurer shall have the same powers and privileges as town Trea- 
surers now by law have, and shall be accountable to said corporation, and shall 
give bond to said corporation in such sum, and with such sureties as the Presi- 
dent of the said corporation shall direct. The Treasurer and collector shall have 
such compensation for their services as the said corporation shall direct, to be 
paid out of the funds of said corporation, who shall have power to levy taxes for 
this purpose, in the manner herein before provided, but no other officer of said 
corporation shall receive any compensation for his services. 

The said corporation, in legal meeting assembled, shall have power to make 
all such By-laws as may be necessary to the regulating and well ordering the 
side- walks, or foot-paths in said Village, and the shade-trees therein; to restrain 
the going at large of all cattle, swine, sheep, geese and other animals; to sink 
wells and place pumps therein in such parts of the public highways as the said 
corporation shall deem expedient; to compel the inhabitants of said Village to 
furnish themselves with fire-buckets and ladders, and to pass such other laws as 
may be deemed necessary to prevent fire, and to inflict penalties for the breach of 
all such by-laws, which for any one offence shall not exceed twenty five dollars. 

Said corporation shall have power, at their annual meetings, to appoint suit- 
able persons not exceeding ten in number, to be Fire-wardens. 

The penalty for breach of any by-law, to be recovered by action of debt, to 
be brought before any court having cognizance of the same: provided however, 
that no by-law shall be repugnant to the laws of this State: And all by-laws 
passed by said corporation shall be published in some newspaper published in 
said Village, or if no newspaper be published therein, then in a newspaper pub- 
lished nearest to said Village. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 57 

Said corporation shall have power, in legal meeting assembled, to choose all 
other officers not enumerated, which shall be necessary to carry the by-laws of 
said corporation into execution. — And all by-laws passed by said corporation 
shall be liable to be repealed by the Superiour Court for the County of Litchfield, 
if by said Superiour Court, on hearing, adjudged to be unreasonable or unjust. 

This resolve may be repealed, revoked, or altered at the pleasure of the 
General Assembly. 

Upon the memorial of the Wardens and Vestry of Trinity Church in the 
Episcopal Society in the town of Fairfield, by their agents Abraham Bulkley, 
Walter Sherwood and others, shewing that in the late Revolutionary war, their 
church, parsonage house, &c. were destroyed by the enemy; and that said Epis- 
copal Society is poor, and unable to complete their church and to support their 
minister without the aid of the Legislature, and praying for a lottery, as per 
petition on file, 40 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the petitioners have liberty, and liberty and au- 
thority are hereby granted them to raise by a lottery, consisting of one or two 
classes, as the managers hereafter appointed shall prefer, but no more, the net sum 
of six thousand dollars, after deducting all necessary expences for conducting said 
Lottery, the said net proceeds to be applied to the purposes above mentioned. 

And be it further resolved, that Jeremiah Sturges, Elijah Boardman, Simeon 
H. Minor, Ralph I. Ingersoll, Gideon Tomlinson, Nathan Smith and John S. 
Cannon, be, and they are hereby appointed managers of said Lottery, with 
power to make such scheme of said class or classes as they may deem expedi- 
ent; and they, or such of them as shall accept the trust of being managers as 
aforesaid, before they enter upon the business of their appointment, shall 
become bound to the Treasurer of this State in the penal sum of twelve 



40. The full petition, dated April 15, 1818, gave a more detailed account of the affairs of the 
society. The church had been burned in the British raid on Stamford in July 1779 and its silver plate 
carried away by the enemy Since then the society had attempted to build "a Small House for Public 
Worship," in the process depleting its funds and selling lands that had been used to support the 
clergyman. The petitioners noted that other ecclesiastical societies had received relief from the 
Assembly and observed that "all Societies and Individuals who Suffered Losses by the fire of the 
Enemy are Equally Entitled to the Bounty of the Honble. Legislature where None have Appeald. in 
Vain." They concluded by asking for a lottery in the amount of $10,000. A joint legislative committee 
agreed with the petitioners' arguments, further detailing the losses and outlining measures that the 
Assembly had taken to compensate other ecclesiastical societies. However, the committee 
recommended that the lottery be at $6,000 rather than $10,000, arguing that compensation would 
have been lower had the petitioners applied earlier rather than waiting until they had exhausted other 
means. The Council initially rejected the committee's report, but concurred with the House's positive 
vote after a conference. Archives, Ecclesiastical Affairs, Ser. 2, V, 79-85. 



58 PUBLIC records May, 

thousand dollars, with one or more sufficient sureties, conditioned for the 
faithful performance of their trust, and that they will well and truly pay the 
prizes to the fortunate adventurers in said lottery, and that they will faithfully 
account with said society for the net avails of said lottery: And the Court of 
Common Pleas for the County of Fairfield are hereby authorized and fully em- 
powered to fill any vacancies that may happen among said managers by death 
or otherwise; and said managers so appointed shall, before they enter on the 
business of their said appointment, give sufficient bonds in the manner herein 
before directed; and any three of said managers having given bond as afore- 
said, shall have power to act. 

And be it further resolved, that said managers shall not enter upon the busi- 
ness of their appointment, nor issue any scheme of said lottery, nor offer, nor 
cause to be offered for sale any tickets therein, until nine months from and after 
the rising of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Payton R. Gilbert of Hebron in the County of Tolland, 
and Deborah Gilbert of said Hebron, shewing to this Assembly, that the said 
Payton R. Gilbert is the sole executor of the last will and testament of Samuel 
Gilbert Esquire, late of said Hebron deceased, and Deborah Gilbert, widow 
and relict of said deceased; that the said Samuel Gilbert Esquire, died on the 
2 1 st day of April last past, leaving a large estate, which is all disposed of in and 
by his last will and testament to his children and legal heirs; that no dispute can 
arise relative to the solvency of said estate, nor the authenticity of his said will, 
but it will require considerable time and attention to settle said estate agreeable 
to said will; and that the present Judge of Probate for the district of Hebron, 
being half brother to the deceased, is by the existing law of the State excluded 
from taking cognizance of said will and directing the settlement of said estate; 
that he is living within the neighbourhood of the petitioners, and that it would 
be a matter of great convenience to the petitioners to have said will proved, and 
the estate settled in said district of Hebron; and that it was the design of the said 
deceased, that his said estate should be settled by the present Judge of Probate 
in the district of Hebron; and that it is agreeable to the wish of all his children 
and heirs that have been seen, and they have, since the death of said deceased, 
seen all but two who live at a distance; and that it would be agreeable to those 
heirs to have said will proved, and said estate settled by the Judge of Probate 
for the district of Hebron; and that there is no Judge of Probate that by law hath 
cognizance thereof within fifteen miles of the petitioners, praying this Assem- 
bly to authorize and empower the present Judge of Probate in and for the 
district of Hebron to take cognizance, and settle said estate according to the 
will of said deceased, as per petition on file dated at Hebron, May 16th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Honourable Sylvester Gilbert, Judge of 
Probate for the district of Hebron, be, and he is hereby authorized and 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 59 

empowered to take cognizance of, and settle said estate in the same manner as 
if no legal disqualification existed. 

Upon the petition of Ira Tuller and Noadiah Kendall Junior, the committee 
of the Methodist denomination of Christians for the Granville Circuit, so 
called, in this State, shewing to this Assembly, that the Trustees constituted by 
the act entitled "An act for the support of Literature and Religion," have re- 
ceived from the Treasury of this State that part of the monies appropriated by 
said act to the Methodist denomination, and that the portion of said monies be- 
longing to the petitioners, amounts to the sum of about three hundred three 
dollars and eighty eight cents; that said sum has been offered to the petitioners, 
and has by them been refused, and that the same now remains in the hands of 
said Trustees, requesting, that said sum may be restored to the public Treasury 
of this State, as per petition on file, dated May 20th 1818; 41 

Resolved, that the Treasurer of this State be, and he is hereby authorized to 
receive into the Treasury of this State, of the said Trustees, the said monies ap- 
propriated to the petitioners as aforesaid, which said monies when so received, 
shall remain subject to the future disposition of this Assembly. — 

Upon the memorial of Jeremiah S. Halsey of Preston in New-London County, 
shewing to this Assembly, that on or about the 10th day of October 1814, he was 
a lawful deputy sheriff for said county, that he received from the clerk of the 
Superiour Court for said county, a warrant commanding him to take the body of 
Samuel Lee and him commit to the keeper of Newgate-prison; that in obedience 
to said warrant, he took the body of said Lee and conducted him on the road to- 
wards Newgate-prison, within about five miles thereof, when said Lee effected 
his escape; that he made speedy pursuit to retake said Lee, and effected the same 
on or about the 30th of October aforesaid, and committed said Lee to the keeper 
of Newgate-prison; that he expended the sum of thirty dollars in the pursuit and 
recaption [sic] of said Lee, praying this Assembly to grant him the sum of thirty 
dollars necessarily expended by him in the pursuit and recaption of said Lee, as 
per memorial on file, dated May 18th A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Controller be, and is hereby ordered to 
draw an order on the Treasurer of this State, in favour of the said Jeremiah S. 
Halsey, for the sum of thirty dollars, in satisfaction of said expences. 

Upon the petition of Polly Jenkinson, widow of John Jenkinson late of 
Watertown in Litchfield County, deceased, and Ebenezer Bates of said 



41. For the background and context of this resolution, see above, pp. xxii-xxiii, and the 
references to S.R., XVIII included there. Methodists in Granby had resolved on April 23, 1818, not 
to accept the appropriation; a legislative committee chaired by Henry W. Edwards considered and 
approved the request. Archives, Ecclesiastical Affairs, Ser. 2, V, 132-34. 



60 public records May, 

Watertown, administrator on the estate of said John Jenkinson, shewing to this 
Assembly, that the said John Jenkinson was a native of England in the kingdom 
of Great Britain and that about eight years ago he came into the United States 
for the purpose of making this country his residence, and for about five years 
past resided in this State; that in August 1815, without being naturalized, and 
without having obtained licence from the General Assembly, to purchase and 
hold real estate in this State, he purchased of Abraham Blackman then of said 
Watertown, and took from said Blackman a good and duly authenticated deed 
of the two following described pieces of land lying in said Watertown, viz. one 
piece containing about eight acres, with a dwelling-house and barn thereon, 
bounded west and south on Samuel Bryan, north on Oliver Nettleton, and east 
on highway. The other piece contains two acres, bounded north and east on 
Curtis Fairchild, south on Abigail Bryan, and west on highway; for which the 
said John paid the said Blackman the full value thereof; that said John died 
about four months ago, leaving said estate incumbered with a mortgage to 
Oliver Nettleton, on which is now due about two hundred and ten dollars, and 
leaving sundry other debts due from him to individuals, and leaving the said 
Polly his widow with two young children; that said real estate is of the value of 
about six hundred dollars, and that said John left little other estate of any kind, 
and wholly insufficient to pay his debts; and that he purchased said real estate 
wholly ignorant of the law prohibiting foreigners to hold real estate in this 
State, without liberty from the General Assembly, praying that said adminis- 
trator be authorized to sell said real estate, as by petition on file dated the 5th 
day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the title to said real estate be confirmed in 
the representatives of the said John, as if the said John, at the time of making 
said conveyance were a native citizen of this State; and that his administrator 
the said Ebenezer Bates, be, and he hereby is authorized and empowered, 
under the direction of the court of Probate for the district of Waterbury, to sell 
and convey said real estate, and with the avails thereof to pay all the just debts 
of said John deceased, and to pay over the residue to the widow and children of 
the said John, first giving bond with sufficient security to the Judge of Probate 
for said district for the faithful performance of said trust. 

Upon the petition of Joshua Leavitt of Suffield in the county of Hartford, 
shewing to this Assembly, that the said Joshua was lawfully married to Huldah 
Pomeroy now Huldah Leavitt, about the 26th day of June A.D. 1800, with 
whom he has since lived, and on his part faithfully discharged all the duties of 
the marriage contract, but that said Huldah on her part hath neglected to per- 
form the duties of a wife to said Joshua, hath threatened to destroy his life, and 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 61 

hath attempted to execute her threats in a secret manner; hath neglected the 
duties of a mother to her children, but hath threatened them with death and 
great bodily harm; hath shewn an adulterous fondness for another man; hath 
wilfully absented herself from said Joshua's house for the greater part of four 
years; hath threatened to destroy, and hath actually destroyed much property of 
your petitioner, and hath shewn such a deadly hatred to said Joshua and his 
family, and such disregard to all moral and social duties as to destroy the peace 
and endanger the morals of him and his family, as per petition on file, dated the 
16th day of April 1818: The petition being duly served upon the said Huldah, 
and returned to this Assembly, the petitioner appeared, and the respondent 
being three times publickly called made default of appearance; whereupon the 
General Assembly proceeded to enquire into the facts stated in said petition 
and find the same to be true; whereupon, 42 

Resolved, that the said Joshua be, and he hereby is divorced from his said 
wife Huldah Leavitt, and freed from all duties and obligations devolving upon 
him by said marriage contract. 

Upon the petition of the Methodist Episcopal Society in New-Haven, 
shewing, that the Trustees, called the Methodist Trustees, constituted by the 
act, entitled "An act for the support of Literature and Religion," have received 
from the Treasury of this State, the money by said act allotted to the Methodist 
denomination, and that said Trustees have made an apportionment of the 
monies by them so received, and that the sum on such apportionment, declared 
to belong to the petitioners, is about eighty dollars, which sum has been offered 
to said society and by them refused, and praying that said money may be re- 
stored to the public Treasury; 43 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Treasurer of this State be, and he is 
hereby authorized to receive said money into the Treasury and pass the same to 
the credit of the State. 

Upon the petition of John Miner of Stonington in New-London county, 
shewing to this Assembly, that in 1814, he was a private in the 5th Company, 
30th Regiment, Connecticut militia; that when the enemy appeared off the 
Borough of Stonington, he immediately repaired to said place and joined said 
5th company commanded by Lieutenant John Hyde; that on the morning of the 



42. See above, p. 48. 

43. As in the resolution on the petition summarized above, pp. 59, 59n, the full New Haven 
petition and the minutes of their proceedings, both dated May 5, 1818, were considered and 
approved by a legislative committee chaired by Henry W. Edwards. Archives, Ecclesiastical 
Affairs, Ser. 2, V, 137-39. 



62 PUBLIC records May, 

10th of August he volunteered his services in the Battery to assist in working 
the eighteen pounder; that at the close of the action with the enemy, he was se- 
verely wounded by the premature discharge of said gun; that in consequence of 
said wound your petitioner has nearly lost his sight, his hearing was consider- 
ably injured, his bodily health much enfeebled; that at the time he was 
wounded, there was no hospital provided at Stonington, that he was carried to 
his father's house, medical assistance afforded, boarded and nursed at the 
expence of his father, which has now amounted to upwards of five hundred dol- 
lars; that his father Manasseh Miner, in 1815 forwarded to Congress a petition 
for his relief, and likewise a pension for the petitioner, with the bills of 
expences which had then arisen; that relief to the amount of part of the expence 
and a pension were granted; that the pension granted by Congress is insuffi- 
cient to supply the common necessaries of life to a person in the situation of the 
petitioner, and he is still in need of much assistance of his friends, praying this 
Assembly to take into consideration the case of the petitioner and grant suit- 
able relief in the premises, as per petition on file, dated May 1st 1817; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the sum of one hundred and fifty dollars be 
granted to said petitioner, and that the Controller be authorized, and he is 
hereby authorized to draw an order on the Treasurer of this State for the sum of 
one hundred and fifty dollars in favour of said John Miner. — 

Upon the petition of the selectmen of the town of New-Canaan, shewing to 
this Assembly, that at the annual town meeting of said town, holden in Decem- 
ber last, Edward Nash was chosen constable and collector of the state tax for 
said town; that soon afterwards, he was called to the City of New- York on 
urgent business, and was detained there contrary to his expectation, until the 
time limited by law for taking his oath of office, had elapsed; praying that the 
said Nash be qualified to perform the duties of his said office, as per petition on 
file, dated May 4th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that it shall be lawful for the said Edward Nash 
to be sworn and qualified as constable and collector of state taxes for said Town 
of New-Canaan; provided the oath of office be administered to him on or 
before the first day of July next; any law to the contrary notwithstanding. 

Upon the memorial of the Mayor and Aldermen of the City of New-London, 
shewing to this Assembly, that by a resolve of the General Assembly, the 
Mayor and Aldermen of said city, with the selectmen of the town of New- 
London, are authorized to meet annually on the 3d Monday of November, to 
appoint eighteen men in said city, to be fire-men to exercise the fire engines in 
said city, who being so appointed are to be excused from military duty; and that 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 63 

by some mistake or accident, no meeting was called or held on said day, and no 
appointments were made pursuant to said resolve, but that a meeting of the 
Mayor and aldermen of said city, and selectmen of said town was warned and 
held on the fourth Monday of November last pursuant to said resolve, when 
they did nominate and appoint eighteen fire-men to work and exercise the fire 
engines in said city, which appointments were duly entered and recorded, praying 
this Assembly to pass a resolve establishing said appointments in the same manner 
and to the same effect as if they had been made on the 3d monday of November 
last, or in some other way grant relief, &c, as per memorial on file; Whereupon, 44 
Resolved by this Assembly, that the nomination and appointment of the 
eighteen fire-men for said City of New-London on said fourth Monday of No- 
vember last, as stated in said memorial be, and the same is hereby established 
and confirmed in the same manner and to the same effect as if said nomination 
and appointments had been made on the 3d Monday of November last. 

Upon the petition of Orrin Pearl of Southington against his creditors, 
shewing to this Assembly, that by reason of sundry losses and misfortunes, he 
has become unable to pay his just debts, and praying to be discharged there- 
from; as per petition on file, dated the 23d day of July A.D. 1816; which 
petition was brought to the then next session of this Assembly, and has been 
continued to the present session; and now the petitioner appeared and was 
heard with his evidence and exhibits; and this Assembly do find the facts stated 
in said petition to be true, and grant the prayer thereof; — 

Resolved by this Assembly, that upon the said Pearl's assigning, conveying, 
and delivering up on oath, on or before the first Monday in August next, all his 
estate both real and personal and all his credits and effects whatsoever, except 
such estate as is by law exempted from execution, to Roger Whittlesey and 
Chester Whittlesey Esquires of said Southington, who are hereby appointed 
Trustees to receive said estate for the benefit of the creditors of said insolvent 
debtor, or if said insolvent debtor shall have no estate except such as is ex- 
empted from execution, and shall make oath thereof before said Trustees, on or 
before said first Monday in August, the said insolvent debtor shall be, and 
hereby is exonerated and discharged from all debts and responsibilities by him 
contracted with, or due to the said respondents previous to the date of said peti- 
tion; and the person of said insolvent debtor, and all the property which he may 
hereafter acquire, shall be forever protected from civil process for, and on ac- 
count of any such debts and responsibilities. And said Trustees shall be sworn 
to a faithful discharge of their duty in the premises; and shall have power and 



44. For the Assembly's October 1804 resolution referenced at the beginning of the paragraph, 
see S.R., XII, 176-77. 



64 PUBLIC records May, 

authority to examine said insolvent debtor upon oath touching his estate, and to 
receive all his property and effects. And upon said insolvent debtor's comply- 
ing with the requirements of this resolve, said Trustees shall make and deliver a 
certificate thereof to said insolvent debtor; and such certificate, or an authenti- 
cated copy thereof, in case said insolvent debtor shall cause said certificate to 
be recorded in the records of this State, shall be sufficient evidence in all courts 
of law and equity, that he has complied with the requirements of this resolve, 
and may be pleaded in discharge of all actions and suits brought against him for 
any debt by him contracted with his said creditors before the date of his said 
petition. And the said Trustees are hereby directed, as soon as may be, after 
said assignment and delivery of said estate to them as aforesaid, to give notice 
to the creditors of said insolvent debtor, by advertising for three successive 
weeks in some public newspaper printed at Hartford, to meet at such time and 
place as said Trustees shall appoint, for the purpose of proving their several 
debts and demands, which claims shall be adjusted by the Trustees aforesaid. 
And said Trustees, after deducting their reasonable fees and expences, shall 
distribute and pay over the residue of said insolvent debtor's estate, or the 
avails thereof, to and among his creditors who shall have proved their debts as 
aforesaid. And the said Trustees shall have full power and authority in their 
own names to commence and prosecute to final judgment any suit or suits for 
the recovery of any debts or demands due or owing to said insolvent debtor 
either at law or in equity: And the person of said insolvent debtor is here by 
protected from arrest and imprisonment for any debt owing to said creditors, or 
contracted at the date of said petition, until the first Monday of August next. — 

Upon the memorial of Joshua Powers of Lyme in the County of New- 
London, shewing to this Assembly, that in the year A.D. 1814, in the late war 
with Great Britain, the state troops of this State, and militia of this State, were, 
while at New-London in service, by the direction of the deputy quartermaster 
general, supplied with the memo[r]ialist's large dwelling-house in New- 
London, for a barrack for said troops for about two months; and that said troops 
did great damage to said house, and that he hath never received any pay for the 
use of said house, nor for the damage done to the same, praying this Assembly 
to grant to him a sufficient sum for the use of said house and damages, as per 
memorial on file, dated the 20th day of May, A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Controller be, and he is hereby ordered to 
draw an order on the Treasurer of this State for the sum of fifty dollars in favour 
of the memorialist in satisfaction for the use of said house, and damages. 

Upon the memorial of the town of Preston, by their agent John Brewster, 
shewing to this Assembly, that the long Society in said Preston was set off from 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 65 

the town of Norwich and annexed to the town of Preston; that it was resolved 
by the General Assembly, that the freemen's and town meetings should be held 
alternately in the first and Second Societies in said Preston, since which the 
Second Society has been set off by an act of the Honourable General Assem- 
bly, and made a distinct town by the name of Griswold; that there is now but 
two ecclesiastical societies in said town; that the place of holding the town and 
freemen's meetings in said town being in the first Society as established by 
said former resolve, renders it very inconvenient for the Second Society to 
attend said meetings; that said town of Preston is willing and desirous that the 
freemen's and town meetings may be held alternately in the now first and 
Second Societies in said town, praying this Assembly to repeal the former re- 
solves as to the place of holding said meetings in said town, and that the same 
may in future be held in the first and Second Societies in said town, alternately, 
agreeable to a vote of said town, as per memorial on file, dated April 14th 1 8 1 8; 45 
Resolved by this Assembly, that the freemen's meetings in future, shall be 
held alternately in the first and Second Societies in said Preston, beginning in 
the Second Society in said Preston; and the town meetings shall be held alter- 
nately in said first and Second Societies as aforesaid. 

Upon the petition of Samuel Riggs of Oxford in New-Haven County, 
shewing to this Assembly, that in the year 1809, and for several years previous 
thereto, he was collector of taxes in said town, and that during the time he was 
collector as aforesaid, he paid to the Treasurer of said town certain town orders 
which had been altered, that as he could not shew from whom he received said 
orders, a strong suspicion rested on him, that he had been guilty of forgery; that 
a prosecution was instituted against him and he was bound over to the 
Superiour Court in a recognizance of two hundred dollars; that although the 
petitioner was innocent of said crime, yet he was induced to forfeit and pay 
said bond; that he hath ever sustained a respectable character, and the profli- 
gate and unprincipled threaten him with a prosecution for said crime, praying 
to be released and discharged from any further prosecution, as per petition on 
file dated May 17th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the petitioner be, and he is hereby released 
and discharged from any further prosecution for and on account of said crime. 

Upon the petition of Ephraim Root, resolved, that the Commissioner of the 
School fund be permitted whenever in his opinion the state of said fund will 

45. For the May 1786 annexation of the Long (or East) ecclesiastical society to the town of 
Preston and the provision relating to the location of town meetings, see S.R., VI, 214-15. Griswold 
had been separated from Preston in October 1815: S.R., XVII, 514-16, 515n. 



66 public records May, 

admit thereof, without special injury to the same, to advance out of the princi- 
pal of said fund to the said Ephraim Root the sum of three thousand dollars, 
under the regulations of the resolves of October 1810, and May 181 1. 46 

Upon the memorial of Matthew Talcott Russel and others, the members of 
the church in the first Ecclesiastical Society in Middletown in the State of Con- 
necticut, shewing to this Assembly, that a house for the purpose of religious 
conference has been built within the society aforesaid, and land furnished 
whereon it stands, for the use of the said church; praying that they may be in- 
corporated and hold the aforesaid estate to themselves and their successors; 47 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the members of the church aforesaid be, and 
they hereby are constituted and created a body politic and corporate by the 
name of 'The church in the first Ecclesiastical Society in Middletown;" and by 
that name, that they and the future members of said church shall and may have 
perpetual succession, and be capable of suing and being sued, impleading and 
being impleaded in all suits of what nature soever, and may also purchase, 
receive, hold and convey any estate real or personal; provided, that the same 
shall not exceed in value the sum of three thousand dollars. — 

Upon the petition of John L. Sullivan representing to this Assembly, that he 
is the proprietor of a number of patented inventions relating to the use of steam 
and steam engines as applied to inland navigation; and that he is desirous of in- 
troducing and establishing the use of such inventions on Connecticut river; 
praying, for reasons therein stated, that a public act of this Assembly be passed, 
extending the terms of time of the patents mentioned in said petition to four- 
teen years beyond the expiration of their several periods, 48 



46. For the 1810 and 181 1 resolutions referenced here, see S.R., XV, 120-21, 192. Root's full 
petition and a legislative committee report can be found in Archives, Colleges and Schools. Ser. 2, 
III. 139-40. 

47. The full petition, dated May 19, 1818. can be found in Archives, Ecclesiastical Affairs. Ser. 
2, III, 94. 

48. This and the following resolution deal with the inventions, patents, and projects of John 
Langdon Sullivan (1777-1865). Son of a Massachusetts governor, Sullivan had already made a 
mark in the field of inland navigation, studying canal construction in Europe and serving as 
engineer on projects in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. Francis S. Drake, Dictionary of 
American Biography. ... Supplement (Boston. 1879). p. 883. The Assembly established two 
corporations relating to these matters at the October 1818 session: see below, pp. 380-82, 380n, 
399-401, 399n. The Archives, Trade and Maritime Affairs. Ser. 2, I. 45-68, II, 79. contains 
extensive background documentation about Sullivan's projects during the years 1818-1819; the 
two petitions summarized here appear in I. 45, 52. 

Steam navigation was raising other concerns in 1818. During the current session, Henry W. 
Edwards introduced an unsuccessful bill in the House to tax steamboat passengers at the rate of 
one dollar; members debated the bill, raising questions about the possibly deleterious effects on 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 67 

Resolved that said petition be, and the same is hereby continued to the ses- 
sion of this Assembly to be held at New-Haven in October next, and that the 
petitioner give public notice of the pendency thereof, by publishing a copy of 
this resolve in a news-paper printed in the city of Hartford, and by publishing a 
like copy in a news-paper printed in the City of Middletown in this State; said 
publications to be made three weeks successively, at least six weeks before 
said October session of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of John L. Sullivan, representing to this Assembly, that 
for ten years past he has been employed in the construction of Locks and 
Canals in the States of Massachusetts and New-Hampshire; and is the patentee 
of divers improvements in steam engines and steam Boats adapted to rivers and 
canals, and is desirous of introducing them into use on Connecticut river; but 
that the present state of Enfield falls presents an obstacle thereto; that it is im- 
portant not only to individuals, but to the public generally, that the obstructions 
to the navigation of said river at said falls should be removed, praying that a 
company may be incorporated to canal and lock the several falls in said river at 
Enfield, as per petition on file, dated May 21st 1818, 

Resolved, that said petition be, and the same is hereby continued to the ses- 
sion of this Assembly to be held at New-Haven in October next; and that the 
petitioner give notice of the pendency of said petition by publishing a copy of 
this resolve in a news-paper printed at Springfield in Massachusetts, and also 
by publishing a like copy in a news-paper printed in the City of Hartford in 
Connecticut; said publications to be made three weeks successively, at least six 
weeks before said October session of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Asher Tiffany of Barkhemstead, shewing to this As- 
sembly, that on the 8th day of May 1816, he with one David Carley made and 
executed jointly and severally their two promissory notes, payable to the Trea- 
surer of this State, or his successor in office, one for fifty nine dollars fifteen 
cents, payable within one year from said 8th day of May, and the other for the 
same sum, payable within two years from said 8th day of May, for the cost of 
prosecution against Isaac S. Carley who was confined in New-Gate prison; that 
said Isaac S. Carley was released from said prison, and assigned to the peti- 
tioner to pay said bill of cost; that said Isaac S. Carley entered into the 



Connecticut's economy resulting from the passenger business of New York steamboat companies 
and whether the tax burden would fall primarily on citizens of Connecticut or New York; they also 
discussed constitutional issues involving interstate commerce. House Proceedings and Debates 
of May 23, June 3, 1818: Courant, June 2, 9, 1818. 



68 public records May, 

employment of your petitioner and therein remained about three weeks and 
then absconded, and the petitioner lost all benefit of his service; that a judg- 
ment has been rendered against the petitioner on one of said notes, and that the 
petitioner is liable to pay the other, praying that said judgment may be cancel- 
led, and that the note for the fifty nine dollars fifteen cents which fell due on the 
eighth day of May 1818, be given up to him, as per petition on file dated 29th 
day of June 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said judgment be, and the same is hereby 
annulled and cancelled, and that the Treasurer of this State be, and he is hereby 
directed to deliver to the petitioner the note for fifty nine dollars fifteen cents 
which fell due on the 8th day of May 1818. — 

Upon the petition of Joseph Trumbull and John E. Hart both of Hartford in 
Hartford County, joint administrators of the goods and estate of Eunice Hart 
late of said Hartford deceased, shewing to this Assembly, that the said Eunice 
died in the month of October A.D. 1813, intestate; that the said Eunice left at 
her death very little personal estate, but was the owner of real estate in said 
Hartford, to the amount of about sixteen thousand dollars; that the court of Pro- 
bate of the district of Hartford granted an order to said administrators to sell so 
much of said real estate as should be necessary to pay the debts of said Eunice; 
that so much thereof has been sold as was necessary to pay all her debts, except 
about three thousand dollars which is still due and owing from said estate to the 
said John E. Hart; and all the debts except the amount of due to said John have 
been paid accordingly; and there still remains of said estate, in lands, to the 
value of about thirteen thousand dollars; that owing to the present reduced 
prices of lands in said town, the real estate of said Eunice cannot now be sold 
without a very considerable loss on the same, and that said John is willing to 
take of said real estate, at the appraisal of indifferent persons, sufficient to pay 
and satisfy his debt against said estate, and that it would be greatly for the ad- 
vantage of said estate that the said debt should be paid and satisfied by the said 
real estate appraised as aforesaid; praying, that so much of said real estate by 
order of this Assembly, as may be necessary to satisfy the debt of said John, ac- 
cording to the appraisement of three indifferent persons, may be applied to the 
payment and satisfaction of said debt, and that said Joseph Trumbull or some 
other person may be authorized to grant and convey the same to said John E. 
Hart for the purpose aforesaid, or that this Assembly would grant some other 
relief in the premises, as by petition on file dated the 28th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the Judge of Probate for the district of Hart- 
ford be, and he hereby is authorized and empowered to appoint three 
indifferent freeholders who shall appraise so much of the real estate of said 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 69 

Eunice Hart deceased, as shall be sufficient to pay and satisfy the debt due 
from said estate to said John E. Hart; and that Joseph Trumbull Esquire be, and 
he hereby is authorized and empowered by deed to grant and convey such real 
estate, so appraised, to said John, to hold to him and to his heirs forever, in full 
payment and satisfaction of his said debt, said appraisers to make return of 
their doings in the premises to said court of Probate. — 

Upon the petition of Harvey Waterbury of Stamford in the county of 
Fairfield, shewing to this Assembly, that at the Superiour court held at Fairfield 
in December 1814, he was convicted of assaulting one John W. Webb with an 
unlawful intent of taking his life, and was therefor by said Superiour court, sen- 
tenced to three years imprisonment in New-Gate prison, and also to pay the 
cost of prosecution taxed at eight hundred thirty two dollars thirty two cents; 
shewing also, that the Honourable General Assembly held at New-Haven in 
October last passed a resolve discharging him from imprisonment after the ex- 
piration of said three years, on his giving his note to the Treasurer of this State for 
the amount of said bill of costs; and that the petitioner, on the 31st day of Decem- 
ber last, gave his note to the Treasurer of this State agreeable to said resolve, and 
was discharged from said prison; shewing also, that the petitioner is in feeble 
health and wholly destitute of property, praying this Assembly to discharge him 
from all liability on said note, as by memorial on file, dated the 2 1st May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Harvey Waterbury be, and he 
hereby is discharged from any further liability on said note, and the Treasurer 
of this State is hereby authorized and directed to cancel the same. 

Upon the report of Nathaniel Perry, William Meeker and Philo Mills Es- 
quires, a committee appointed by the Honourable General Assembly held at 
New-Haven on the second Thursday of October 1817, upon the petition of 
Elijah Boardman and others, to view, and if judged expedient, to lay out a road 
from or near the meeting-house in New-Milford, to, or near the house of 
Gideon Wanzer in Sherman, to the line of the State of New- York, to strike the 
Phillipstown turnpike road; to assess damages which shall be done to individu- 
als through whose land the road may pass, and make report to this or some 
future Assembly; which report hath been made to this Assembly, and upon a 
full hearing was accepted and approved, and said road as laid out by said com- 
mittee, established as a public highway; 49 



49. For the earlier consideration of this petition, see S.R., XVIII, 217, 217n, 273-74, 273n; for 
the October 1815 act referenced below, see S.R., XVII, 430-31. The turnpike was operating as late 
as 1837: Wood, Turnpikes, pp. 388-89. 



70 PUBLIC records May, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said report be, and the same is hereby ac- 
cepted, and ordered to be recorded in the public records of this State; and that 
the said road so accepted and approved, be, and the same is hereby established 
as an open public highway, and to be used and improved as such, whenever the 
aforesaid damages assessed to individuals shall have been paid by the towns of 
New-Milford and Sherman. 

Be it further resolved, that the damages assessed in the town of New- 
Milford shall be paid by said town of New-Milford, and the damages assessed 
in the town of Sherman shall be paid by said town of Sherman, on or before the 
first day of March next, unto the several individuals through whose land the 
aforesaid road is laid. 

Be it further resolved, that for the purpose of making said road, and building 
the bridges thereon, and keeping the same in repair, that Elijah Boardman, 
Jedediah Greaves, David Northrop, Jotham Sherman, Elihu Marsh 2d together 
with such other persons as shall hereafter associate with them, their succes- 
sors, heirs and assigns, be, and they hereby are constituted a corporation by the 
name of 'The New-Milford and Sherman Turnpike Company;" by that name 
to sue and be sued; to appoint such officers, to ordain and establish such by- 
laws as shall be necessary for the government of said company, and the raising of 
such sums of money as may be necessary or proper to carry into effect the object of 
said company; provided, however, that said by-laws shall not be inconsistent with 
the laws of this State or the United States; and provided, such officers so ap- 
pointed, shall hold their offices until others are appointed in their stead. 

And be it further resolved, that the first meeting of said company shall be 
held at such place in the town of New-Milford in Litchfield county, and at such 
time, as said Elijah Boardman, Jedediah Greaves, David Northrop, Jotham 
Sherman and Elihu Marsh 2d or any three of them shall direct; of which notice 
shall be given in a newspaper printed in Bridgeport, at least three weeks suc- 
cessively, before the time of hold[ing] such meeting; and the annual and other 
meetings of said company for the choice of officers, making and establishing 
by-laws, ordinances and regulations, or for any other purpose, shall be from 
time to time, held at such times and places, and be warned in such manner as 
said company shall direct; and the members of said company shall have as 
many votes in such meetings as they hold shares in said company. 

Be it further resolved, that there shall be one hundred shares of the stock of 
said company, and as soon as said company shall have put said road in good 
repair to the acceptance of commissioners to be appointed by the Governour 
and Council, said company shall have a right to collect the same toll at each of 
said gates, as is provided in and by the act, entitled "An act in addition to an act, 
entitled an act concerning Turnpike roads, and for keeping the same in repair;" 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 71 

passed October 1815; and also for horses, cattle or mules, each two cents; hogs 
and sheep each five mills; subject however to the exemptions made in said act. 
And there shall be two toll gates on said road; one of which shall be situated in 
New-Milford, on or near the bridge across Ousatonick river, at a place called 
Boardman's bridge; and one in the town of Sherman, at or near the old dwell- 
ing house owned by Isaac Sherwood, late the residence of Ebenezer Sherwood 
deceased. 

And be it further resolved, that said company shall at all times, at their own 
expence, keep said road in good repair, so long as they shall receive toll, sub- 
ject to the inspection of such commissioners as may be appointed for that 
purpose: And when, and so soon as the toll shall reimburse to the said com- 
pany, their successors, heirs and assigns, the sums by them advanced for 
making said road and keeping the same in good and complete repair, together 
with an interest of eight per cent per annum, the said road shall be and remain 
discharged from said toll; excepting so far as the General Assembly shall then 
order for the purpose of keeping the same in good repair. 

And be it further resolved, that said company have liberty, and they are 
hereby authorized to purchase and hold lands not exceeding fifty acres: And all 
rights and shares in said Turnpike company, and all property which shall be 
vested therein, or appertain thereto, and belonging to said company, shall be 
considered, and is hereby declared to be personal estate. And the shares of said 
company shall be transferable only on the books of said company, and in such 
manner as said company shall be their by-laws direct: Provided, however, that 
unless said company shall make and repair said road to the acceptance of the com- 
missioners who may hereafter be appointed on said road, within two years from 
the first day of November next, this grant shall be void, and the report of said com- 
mittee be deemed and held as though never made, accepted or approved: Provided, 
that this resolve may be amended or altered at the pleasure of this Assembly. — 



72 PUBLIC records May, 

Upon the petition of the Hartford Bridge company, shewing to this Assem- 
bly, that the Honourable General Assembly, at their session in October A.D. 
1 808, granted to said company the right of building a bridge across Connecti- 
cut river, between the towns of Hartford and East-Hartford; that by virtue of 
said grant a bridge was erected across said river in the summer and fall of A.D. 
1 809; that in said grant, the right to keep up and maintain the ferries established 
by law between the said towns of Hartford and East-Hartford, was reserved; 
Praying that said ferries may be discontinued, as by petition on file, dated the 
3d day of October A.D. 1 8 1 7. 50 

This petition was brought to this Assembly at its session in October A.D. 1817; 
at which session, this Assembly ordered notice of the pendency of said petition to 
be given to the towns of Hartford and East-Hartford; by leaving a true and attested 
copy of said petition and said order with the town clerk in said East-Hartford, and a 
like copy with the town clerk in said Hartford, and to all others, by publishing said 
order in the Connecticut Courant printed at Hartford, three weeks successively, 
the last publication, at least six weeks before the second Thursday of May 1818; 
and the said petition was continued to the present session of this Assembly, notice 
having been given agreeably to said order; therefore, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that whenever said Bridge company shall have 
repaired said Bridge without a draw, and shall have raised and repaired the 
causeway to the acceptance of the commissioners appointed by the original 
grant, the ferries by law established between the towns of Hartford and East- 
Hartford, shall be discontinued, and said towns shall thereafter never be per- 
mitted to transport passengers across said river, unless on the happening of the 
contingency herein-after mentioned. 



50. For the initial presentation of this petition and the continuing disputes over the Hartford to 
East Hartford ferry, see S.R., XVIII, 289-90, 290n. Since then the bridge had been severely 
damaged by winter ice. In a March 30, 1818, petition, subsequently withdrawn, the company 
requested to rebuild the bridge without a draw; this issue had been the subject of contention in 1816 
and 1817: see ibid., pp. 73-74, 73n, 1 18-19, 214-15, 215n. and the references there. The manuscript 
bill, as well as the accounts in the newspapers, indicates considerable revision and negotiation, 
involving consideration by a legislative committee as well as differences between the two houses. 
The apparently conflicting statements about the draw in the first and second resolutions below 
might have resulted from this convoluted process. Archives. Travel, Ser. 2. II, 22-24; House 
Proceedings of May 21, June 2, 1818: Mercury; May 26, June 16, 1818; Courant, May 26, June 9, 
1818. The 1808 grant to the company can be found in S.R., XIV, 140-45, 140-41 n; the 1805 laws 
establishing the ferry and the current rates can be found in Stat., Conn., 1808, pp. 325-27. Pease and 
Niles, in their 1819 Gazetteer, p. 48, noted that the rebuilt bridge was "constructed upon different 
principles than the former one, and is greatly improved from it," being covered and better protected 
from the weather. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 73 

Be it further resolved, that said company shall within eighteen months from 
the rising of this Assembly, rebuild said bridge; and the piers shall be raised to 
the acceptance of said commissioners, not exceeding four feet higher than they 
now are: A suitable draw shall be erected and placed over the channel of the 
river at the west end of the bridge, not less than thirty feet wide; and the bridge 
shall be built on the chord of the arch, and not on the crown thereof conform- 
ably to the directions in the original grant; and the causeway shall be raised to 
the acceptance of said commissioners, not to exceed three feet higher than it 
now is; and said bridge and causeway shall be accepted and approved by said 
commissioners appointed by the General Assembly as aforesaid: And unless 
said bridge shall be rebuilt, and said causeway be repaired as herein provided, 
it shall be lawful for the towns of Hartford and East- Hartford to revive said 
ferry and improve the same, in the same manner, and with the same privileges 
as if said ferry had not been discontinued: And no toll shall thereafter be col- 
lected on said bridge, until the same be rebuilt as aforesaid. 

Be it further resolved, that if, at any time, said bridge and causeway shall not be 
kept in good and sufficient repair, it shall be the duty of said commissioners, or of 
commissioners hereafter to be appointed by this Assembly, and they are hereby 
authorized to open the gate on said bridge, and no toll shall be collected thereat, 
until the same be closed by direction of said committee or commissioners. — 

Be it further resolved, that said Bridge company are hereby authorized to 
demand and receive of all persons passing over said bridge and causeway, in 
lieu of the tolls specified in their original grant, the following tolls, viz. 

cents. 
For each man and horse 4 

For each chaise, sulkey, chair or gig, 

with one horse and driver, 10 

For each curricle, gig or chaise with two 

horses and driver, 25 

For each four wheeled pleasure carriage 

with two horses and driver, 25 

For each four wheeled pleasure carriage 

with four horses and driver, 34 

For each four wheeled pleasure carriage 
with more than four horses, passen- 
gers and driver, 50 
For each mail stage, passengers and 

driver, 25 

For each two horse pleasure sleigh and 

driver, 16 



74 PUBLIC records May, 

For each one horse pleasure sleigh and 

driver, 8 

For each sled, sleigh, cart or waggon, 
drawn by two beasts, loaded or empty, 
and driver 12 V2 

For each extra ox, horse or mule, 3 

For each cart or waggon drawn by one 
horse, or other beast, loaded or empty, 
and driver, 8 

For each foot passenger, 1 

For each horse or mule led or driven, 3 

For each ox or other neat kine, led or 

driven, 2 

For each sheep, swine or goat, 1 

Be it further resolved, that said Bridge company shall at all times, keep three 
good and sufficient ferry boats, under the inspection, and to the acceptance of 
said committee or said commissioners, to transport passengers across said river, 
and over the waters in the meadows adjoining, whenever the said causeway may 
be impassable; and while said bridge shall be out of repair, it shall be the duty of 
said company to provide and keep in constant readiness a sufficient number of 
men to manage said boats, and shall transport passengers and whatever else it 
may be necessary to transport over said river and waters, whenever circum- 
stances shall render it necessary, for the fares at present established by law for 
the Hartford and East-Hartford ferries: And whenever said bridge or causeway 
shall be so out of repair, and said Bridge company shall neglect to rebuild or 
repair the said bridge or causeway to the acceptance of said commissioners, 
within such reasonable time as shall be limited by said commissioners, then the 
towns of Hartford and East-Hartford may occupy and improve said ferries in the 
same manner as is now by law provided; and the said company shall thereafter 
receive no toll on said bridge and causeway, nor improve said ferry, until the 
same be repaired or rebuilt to the acceptance of the commissioners. 

Provided, that this act may at any time hereafter be altered, amended or re- 
pealed by the General Assembly, in the same manner as the original act 
incorporating said Bridge company. 

And provided, that nothing in this act be construed to affect or impair the right 
of any person to pass on the ice in said river, in any way or manner whatever. 

Upon the report of Roger Whittlesey, Amasa Bradley and Samuel Cook Es- 
quires, a committee appointed by the Honourable General Assembly held at 
New-Haven on the second Thursday of October 1817, upon the petition of 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 75 

John Norton and others, to view, and if judged expedient, to lay out a road from 
the Turnpike road leading from Hartford to Danbury, in Plymouth, through the 
town of Wolcott, to fall into the Cheshire Turnpike road, either in Cheshire or 
Hamden, to assess the damages which shall be done to individuals through 
whose land the road may pass, and make report to this or some future Assem- 
bly; which report hath been made to this Assembly, and upon a full hearing, 
was accepted and approved; and said road is laid out by said committee, estab- 
lished as a public highway; 51 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said report be, and the same is hereby ac- 
cepted, and ordered to be recorded in the public records of this State, and that 
the said road so accepted and approved be, and the same is hereby established 
as an open public highway, and to be used and improved as such within ninety 
days after the aforesaid damages assessed to individuals shall have been paid 
by a company to be formed to make said road and keep the same in repair; pro- 
vided, however, that unless said company is formed and said damages paid 
within eighteen months from the rising of this Assembly, said road so laid out, 
shall not be deemed a public highway, but shall in all respects be and remain in 
the same situation as if said report had never been made, accepted or approved. 

Be it further resolved, that for the purpose of making said road and keeping 
the same in repair, Ambrose Ives, Gates Upson and Lucius Tuttle, together 
with such other persons as shall hereafter associate with them, their succes- 
sors, heirs and assigns be, and they hereby are constituted a corporation by the 
name of "The Wolcott and Hamden Turnpike Company;" and by that name to 
sue and be sued, to appoint such officers, to ordain and establish such by-laws 
as shall be necessary for the government of said company, and the raising such 
sums of money as may be necessary or proper to carry into effect the object of 
said company; provided, however, that said by-laws shall not be inconsistent 
with the laws of this State, or the United States; and provided such officers so 
appointed shall hold their offices until others are appointed in their stead. 

And be it further resolved, that the first meeting of said company shall be held 
at such place in the town of Wolcott in New-Haven county, and at such time as 
the said Ives, Upson, and Tuttle, or any two of them shall direct, of which, notice 
shall be given in one or more newspapers printed in New-Haven, at least three 
weeks successively, before the time of holding such meeting. And the annual 
and other meetings of said company for the choice of officers, making and 



51. For the appointment of the committee reporting here, see S.R., XVIII, 280-81, 28 In, where 
the initial presentation of the petition is referenced; the full committee report can be found in 
Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, XVII, 87. The October 1815 act referenced below can be found in S.R., 
XVII, 430-31. 



76 public records May, 

establishing by-laws, ordinances and regulations, or for any other purpose, shall 
be from time to time, held at such times and places, and be warned in such 
manner as said company shall direct, and the members of said company shall 
have as many votes in such meetings as they hold shares in said company. 

Be it further resolved, that there shall be two hundred and fifty shares of the 
stock of said company, and as soon as said company shall have paid said dam- 
ages, and put said road in good repair, to the acceptance of commissioners to be 
appointed by the Governour and Council, said company shall have a right to 
collect the same toll as is prescribed in and by the act entitled "An act in addi- 
tion to an act entitled an act concerning Turnpike roads and for keeping the 
same in repair," passed October 1815, subject however to the exemptions made 
in said act. And there shall be two toll gates on said road, one of which shall be 
situated in the town of Wolcott within eighty rods of the dwelling-house of 
Jesse Upson, and shall be a whole or full toll gate; and the other gate shall be 
within half a mile of the place called the "Notch of the Rock," at such place as 
the commissioners on said road shall designate; which last mentioned gate 
shall be a half toll gaits provided, however, that at said half toll gate it shall not 
be lawful to receive toll of travellers who pass upon the East and West road 
which crosses said Turnpike road near said gate; Provided also, that in addition 
to the exemptions made in said act, there shall also be the following exemp- 
tions at said half toll gate near the notch of the rock, viz. all persons residing on 
said road in the town of Cheshire, north of said gate, unless they travel more 
than four miles on said road; also all persons residing in said town of Cheshire 
going to or returning from a fulling-mill in said town, unless they travel more 
than four miles on said road. 

And be it fiirther resolved, that said company shall at all times, at their own 
expence, keep said road in good repair, so long as they shall receive toll, subject to 
the inspection of such commissioners as may be appointed for that purpose: And 
when, and so soon as the toll shall reimburse to the said company, their successors, 
heirs and assigns, the sums by them advanced for paying and discharging said 
damages, making said road, and keeping the same in good and complete repair, to- 
gether with an interest of eight per cent per annum, the said road shall be and 
remain discharged from said toll, excepting so far as the General Assembly shall 
then order for the purpose of keeping the same in good repair. 

And be it fiirther resolved, that said company have liberty, and they are hereby 
authorized to purchase and hold lands not exceeding fifty acres: And all rights 
and shares in said Turnpike company and all property which shall be vested 
therein, or appertain thereto, and belonging to said company, shall be consid- 
ered, and is hereby declared to be personal estate. And the shares of said 
company shall be transferable only on the books of said company, and in such 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 77 

manner as said company shall by their by-laws direct: Provided, however, that 
unless said company make and repair said road to the acceptance of the commis- 
sioners who may hereafter be appointed on said road, within two years from the 
first day of October next, this grant shall be void, and the report of said commit- 
tee be deemed and held as though never made, accepted or approved. Provided, 
that this resolve may be amended or altered at the pleasure of this Assembly. — 

Upon the petition of Jabez Perkins and others, inhabitants of the towns of 
Norwich and Preston, shewing to this Assembly that in consequence of their 
residing in the vicinity of the new toll bridge erected across the Shetucket 
River, near Chelsea landing in said Norwich, and their owning land both sides 
of said river, and being under the necessity of daily passing and repassing said 
bridge to cultivate their lands, pasture their cows and other cattle; and shewing 
to this Assembly, that by the charter of said Bridge company, no provision is 
made, authorizing the President, directors and company of said bridge to make 
annual contracts for the passing of said bridge; praying this Assembly to 
enable said Bridge company to contract by the year for passing said bridge, as 
per petition on file dated April 20th 1818; 52 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the President and directors of said Bridge 
company be, and they are hereby authorized and empowered to contract by the 
year for the passing said bridge with such persons as may apply for the same; 
and in case of disagreement between said applicants and said President and di- 
rectors, to refer the same to the commissioners appointed on said bridge; 
whose determination shall be final and conclusive between said applicants and 
the President, directors and company of said bridge: Provided, that said refer- 
ence be made by the mutual agreement of the parties. 

Upon the petition of Benjamin Reed, Thomas Spring, Levi Rice and others, 
shewing to this Assembly, that the public good requires that a Turnpike road 
should be laid out from the Green Woods Turnpike in Berkhemstead, near a 
chair factory, through Granby and a corner of Suffield a little east of Richard 
Warner's dwelling-house in said Suffield, and thence to a monument at the 
southwest corner of Springfield, near the house of Justus Rising, it being 
nearly a direct course to Springfield bridge; praying that a Turnpike road might 
be surveyed and laid out from the said Greenwoods Turnpike road to the said 



52. For the May 1816 incorporation of the Norwich and Preston Bridge Company, see. S.R., 
XVIII, 45-47, 46n. The House erased the phrase "residing within half a mile of each end of sd. 
Bridge" after "apply for the same" and added the proviso at the end of the resolution. The Council 
agreed with these changes. Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, III, 30. 



78 PUBLIC records May, 

monument, and to be incorporated into a Turnpike company, together with 
such other persons as may associate with them, as by petition on file, dated at 
Granby the 10th day of April 1817. 53 

This petition was continued by this Assembly at their session in May 1817, 
with an order of notice, and said notice was given in pursuance of said order; 
and at the October session of this Assembly, Jonathan Cowles, Shubael 
Griswold and Augustus Pettibone Esquires, were appointed a committee to 
view the route mentioned by Benjamin Reed and others, and another route 
mentioned by Dan Viets and others, and make report as to the expediency of 
laying a new road, &c. The said committee went out and report as follows, viz. 

To the Honourable General Assembly of the State of Connecticut, to be 
holden at Hartford on the second Thursday of May 1818; the subscribers being 
by your Honors, at your session in October last, appointed a committee on the 
petition of Benjamin Reed and others, and on the petition of Dan Viets and 
others, praying that a Turnpike road may be surveyed and laid out from the 
Greenwoods Turnpike road in the town of Berkhemstead northeasterly through 
the said town to the store of Almanzor Denslow in the town of Granby, and 
thence to the southwest corner of the town of Springfield, or from said 
Denslow's store easterly to Appleton Robbins' store near the meeting house in 
Turkey Hills in said Granby, with directions to ascertain the distance from 
Springfield to Litchfield through the town of Canton, and the distance to Litch- 
field by the route proposed for said new road; and also the distance from 
Enfield Bridge to Norfolk on the Turnpike road through Hartland, and also by 
Turkey Hills by the new proposed road, and to report our opinion as to the ex- 
pediency of laying said new road as prayed for; 

Report, that after causing public notice to be given of the time, place and 
business of our meeting, we met on the 4th day of May instant, and proceeded 
on the duties of our appointment, and find, that from a point on the Green- 
woods Turnpike road, near the chair factory of the late Mr. Wood in 
Barkhemstead, to Almanzer Denslow's store in Granby, is nine miles and a 
half, and twenty six rods, and from thence to the southwest corner of the town 
of Springfield is eight miles and an half and sixteen rods, making the whole 
distance on this route as prayed for, eighteen miles and forty two rods; and the 
distance from said Denslow's store to Appleton Robbins' store in Turkey Hills 
is six miles and a half. That section of the new proposed road from 



53. For the initial presentation of Reed's petition, the counter-petition by Viets, and the 
appointment of the committee reporting here, see S.R., XVIII, 220-21, 22 In, 299-300. 300n. This 
was not the end of the matter; in October 1818, the Assembly rejected the committee's subsequent 
report: see below, pp. 432-33, 432n. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 79 

Greenwoods Turnpike to Denslow's store, passes over a hilly, and somewhat of 
a rough country, but most of the hills may be avoided, and a feasible road made 
on a good soil for the purpose, at a moderate expence; that a road well made 
across this section, would, in our opinion, be of great convenience to the people 
in its vicinity, and of considerable public utility. That part of the proposed route 
leading from Denslow's store to Springfield line, passes over a level ground in 
general, the land light, and the inhabitants thinly settled — a road might be 
made over this course, at small expence, and would be convenient and useful, 
and would open an avenue through which there is now no direct road — That 
section of the proposed new road from Denslow's store to Robbins' store, 
passes over a distance of about six and half miles, through which a good road is 
now travelled, and on which the inhabitants are considerably thick settled, and 
is a road of considerable travel. 

Your committee find, that the whole distance from Springfield bridge to 
Norfolk, on the new proposed route as prayed for by Benjamin Reed and 
others, is about thirty nine miles; that from said Springfield bridge to Norfolk 
by the way of Turkey Hills, on the new route proposed, the distance will be 
about forty two and half miles — The distance from Springfield by the way of 
Canton to Litchfield, we find to be forty four miles — from Springfield to Litch- 
field on the new proposed route will be about the same distance. From Enfield 
bridge to Norfolk on the Hartland Turnpike road, is not far from thirty five 
miles. The distance from Enfield bridge to Norfolk by Turkey Hills on the new 
proposed route is about thirty seven miles. 

Your committee would further state, that the transportation of iron, nail 
rods, &c. from Winstead to Springfield and to Newgate prison is very consid- 
erable; that this loading and considerable other travel is now by the way of 
Canton, which is a very circuitous route, that by opening a road from the Green- 
woods Turnpike road to Granby, as proposed, the distance from Winstead to 
Springfield and Enfield, would be shortened from the present travel, from seven 
to nine miles. The new proposed road ranges through Barkhemstead about four 
or five miles southward of the Hartland Turnpike road, and would open a short 
and feasible outlet for the transportation of iron, bark, coal, lumber, and other 
heavy commodities, to a market eastward to Connecticut river, and would afford 
a facility of intercourse to the inhabitants in the vicinity, and to travellers from 
the eastward, whose business might lead them in this course. 

Your committee therefore report, as their opinion, that it is expedient that a 
road be surveyed, and made a Turnpike road, from a position on Greenwoods 
Turnpike road near the chair factory of the late Mr. Wood in Barkhemstead, to a 
point near the store of Almanzor Denslow in Granby, as prayed for by the peti- 
tioners. And we are also of the opinion, that a public hig[h]way ought to be laid 



80 public records May, 

out and a road made, from said Denslow's store northeasterly, in the course 
pointed out in the petition of Benjamin Reed and others, to the intersection of 
the Hartland Turnpike road, near the dwelling-house of Mr. Thomas Spring in 
said Granby ; but tft our opinion is, that this section of the proposed road, being 
over plain and easy ground, does not require to be made a Turnpike road. 

We are also of opinion, that the present travelled road from said Denslow's 
to Turkey-Hills ought to be straightened in several places, and the road 
mended; but, that it is not expedient to make this section a Turnpike road, as 
prayed for by Dan Viets and others. 

All which is respectfully submitted. Jonathan Cowles 

Shubael Griswold 
Augustus Pettibone 
Committee 
May 7th 1818. 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Benjamin Reed, Thomas Spring and 
Levi Rice, together with such other persons as shall associate with them, their 
heirs, assigns and successors be, and they are hereby constituted a corporation 
by the name of "The Granby and Barkhemstead Turnpike Company;" by which 
name to sue and be sued in all courts of record; to purchase, hold and dispose of 
real estate, not exceeding fifty acres of land; to ordain and establish all by-laws, 
ordinances and regulations, as shall be necessary or expedient for the govern- 
ment of said company, and for raising such sums of money as may be necessary 
to make and repair said road, and defray the expences of said company, not con- 
trary to the laws of this State, and subject to be repealed by the Superiour Court. 

And it is further resolved, that the said Jonathan Cowles, Shubael Griswold 
and Augustus Pettibone be, and they are hereby appointed a committee to lay 
out said road agreeably to their report and recommendation aforesaid, and 
assess the damages to individuals, which said damages shall be paid by the sev- 
eral towns in which the said damages shall accrue; and the said road from the 
said point on the Greenwoods Turnpike to the said Denslow's, shall be and 
remain a Turnpike road, with all the privileges incident to such corporations; 
and the road from the said Denslow's to the Hartland Turnpike, mentioned in 
said report, shall be a free road, and made at the expence of said company. And 
said committee are authorized to lay out the road one and three fourths mile 
farther north to the house of Nathaniel Warner, upon the same terms and condi- 
tions with the rest of the free road aforesaid. 

And it is further resolved, that the first meeting of said company shall be 
held at the dwelling-house of Joab Griffin Esquire, in Granby, on the third 
monday of June 1818; and all future meetings shall be held at such time and 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 81 

place as said company shall direct; and the members of said company shall 
have as many votes in their meetings as they may hold shares in said company. 

And it is further resolved, that whenever said company shall have fully 
made the whole of said road, from the said chair factory to the said Hartland 
Turnpike, and obtained a certificate thereof from such commissioners as may 
hereafter be appointed by the Governour and Council, the proprietors shall be, 
and they are hereby authorized to erect one toll gate, or two half toll gates, at 
such place or places, southwest of the said Denslow's as shall be directed by 
the committee appointed in this resolve. 

The proprietors, their heirs, &c, shall be, and they are hereby authorized to 
collect the following toll, viz. 

For each loaded sled or sleigh 

Each empty ditto 

Each pleasure sleigh 

Every travelling or pleasure four wheeled 
carriage, 

Every chaise, chair or sulkey, 

Every loaded cart or waggon, 

Every empty ditto 

Every one horse waggon, 

Each person and horse 

Each led horse, 

Horses, cattle and mules in droves, each 

Sheep and swine, each, .5 

and such other toll as is prescribed in an act, in addition to an act, entitled an act 
concerning Turnpike roads and for keeping the same in repair, passed October 
1 8 15; provided, the exemptions from toll on said road, shall be the same as pro- 
vided in the act aforesaid. 

And be it further resolved, that said company shall keep said road in good 
repair, and build and keep in repair all necessary bridges on said road, except 
such streams and rivers on which towns are by law obliged to build and main- 
tain bridges; and if said company shall at any time neglect to keep said road in 
repair, to the satisfaction of said commissioners, then and in that case, the said 
commissioners are authorized and directed to order said gates to be thrown 
open, and so remain until said road be put in good repair, and said company be 
authorized by said commissioners to shut said gates and receive said toll. 

And be it further resolved, that said company shall keep a fair account of all 
their receipts and expenditures of monies received or expended for repairs on 
said road; which accounts shall be annually rendered and adjusted by commis- 
sioners which may be appointed as aforesaid. And when and so soon as the toll 



cents. 


mills 


6. 


3 


4 




6. 


3 


25 




12. 


5 


12. 


5 


6. 


2 


6. 


3 


4 




1 




1 





82 PUBLIC records May, 

shall reimburse said company, their successors, heirs and assigns the sums by 
them advanced in making said road, and keeping the same in repair, together 
with an interest of eight per cent per annum, then said road shall be discharged 
from said toll: Provided, nevertheless, that said towns shall not be obliged to 
open said road, or pay the damages assessed against them until a company 
shall have been regularly formed to make said Turnpike road, and also said free 
road: Provided, that this resolve may be altered, amended, or annulled at the 
pleasure of the General Assembly. 

Upon the memorial of the Windham and Mansfield Turnpike Company, 
praying for liberty to continue their toll gate where it now stands in Franklin; 
which memorial is dated the 6th day of October 1817; 54 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said company be, and they hereby are autho- 
rized to continue their toll gate in Franklin, where it now stands, during the 
pleasure of the General Assembly, under the regulations and restrictions con- 
tained in a resolve of the Assembly passed upon the petition of Darius Frink 
and others, May session A.D. 1817. 

Upon the petition of Joseph S. Avery and Mary Avery of Stonington in 
New-London County, shewing to this Assembly, that said Joseph S. Avery is 
guardian to Robert P. Avery, a minor of four years of age; that the father of said 
minor died in April 1815, leaving real estate in the town of Groton in the 
county of New-London, consisting of about one acre of land and a dwelling- 
house thereon standing, butted and bounded as follows; on the north and west, 
by lands of William Newton, on the east by the road, and south by lands of John 
Spicer, of the value of fifteen hundred dollars; that one of said petitioners, the 
wife of said Joseph S. Avery, has the right of dower in said premises, and is 
mother to said minor; that the value of said property consists principally in 
buildings, is that kind of property that does not afford so permanent a rent as an 
equal amount in lands; that the repairs of said buildings absorb a considerable 
part of the annual rents; that by the time said minor attains the age of twenty 
one, the buildings must go to decay very considerably; that said property is sit- 
uated about equidistant from the head of Mistick in Stonington and Pocatonick 
in Preston; that said stand has been improved principally for mercantile pur- 
poses; that said property, if sold, the avails can be reinvested in lands that may 



54. For the May 1817 action referenced below, see S.R., XVIII, 214, 214n. The complete 
petition, going over the history of the company's gate in Franklin, can be found in Archives, Travel, 
Ser.2, XVII, 61. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 83 

enhance in value, and be more productive as to rent; praying for liberty to sell 
said described premises, as per petition on file, dated May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said Joseph S. Avery be, and he is hereby 
authorized to sell and convey said described premises, and to give a good and 
legal conveyance of the same, together with his wife Mary Avery, taking the di- 
rection of the court of Probate for the District of Stonington thereon: Provided, 
said Joseph S. Avery give bonds to the satisfaction of the court of Probate for 
the district aforesaid, to reinvest the avails thereof in lands. 

Upon the petition of Daniel Barlow and others of Brookfield in Fairfield 
county, shewing to this Assembly, that Mitchell Barlow of said Brookfield, 
being naturally deficient in understanding, has been for many years under the 
care of a conservator; that said Mitchell is the owner of about one hundred and 
forty acres of land lying in seven or eight detached parcels, in the towns of 
Brookfield, Danbury and New-Fairfield; a part of which is cultivated, but the 
greater part is woodland; that the profits of said lands have heretofore been ap- 
propriated for the support of said Mitchell, and the lands have been so managed, 
that the same are much impoverished and depreciated in value, and the fences 
much out of repair; and that said lands cannot, in their present state, be rented for 
a sum sufficient for said Mitchell's support; that the personal estate of said 
Mitchell is nearly exhausted, and that it will be necessary to sell all, or a part of 
said lands for his support; that said lands cannot be advantageously sold in small 
parcels, as the exigency of the case may require, but if sold together, said lands 
will now sell for their full value, and much to the advantage of said Mitchell; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Robert B. Ruggles of said town of Brookfield 
be, and he is hereby authorized and empowered, under the direction of the Judge 
of Probate for the district of Danbury, to sell at public auction, the whole of said 
lands, and give a deed or deeds of conveyance to the purchaser or purchasers 
thereof, and to loan the avails thereof on mortgage security, with interest payable 
annually, for the support and benefit of said Mitchell; the said Robert B. Ruggles 
first giving bond with sufficient surety to said Judge of Probate, conditioned for 
the faithful performance of said trust, and that he shall render an account of his 
proceedings in the premises to said Judge of Probate when thereto required. 

Upon the petition of Volusia Booth, mother and guardian to Charles W. 
Booth, Solomon S. Booth, Don Alonzo Booth, Volusia Marietta Booth and 
Juliet Booth, all minors under the age of twenty one years, shewing to this 
court, that said minors are the owners of six several pieces of land situate in 
said [sic] Newtown, containing in the whole about one hundred and fifty acres, 
and of the value of about five thousand dollars; that said lands are mostly 



84 public records May, 

unfenced, and that the petitioner has not the means of fencing them; and that in 
their present situation, said lands cannot be rented for more than one per cent; 
that said lands are so situated that they cannot be divided among said minors 
without greatly diminishing their value, praying this Assembly to appoint 
some suitable person to sell said lands under the direction of the Judge of Pro- 
bate in and for the district of Danbury, and that the avails thereof be put at 
interest on such security as shall be approved of by said Judge of Probate; and 
that the annual interest thereof be applied for the support and maintenance of 
said minors, as per petition on file, dated the 1 1th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Volusia Booth be, and she is hereby 
empowered to sell under the direction of the Judge of Probate in and for the dis- 
trict of Danbury, all the above pieces of land, giving bond with surety to said 
Judge of Probate, to account with him when thereto required, or to said minors 
when they shall respectively arrive at the age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Abram Bronson of Roxbury in Litchfield county, 
shewing to this Assembly, that the petitioner is guardian of Ebenezer Warner a 
minor of about the age of eight years; that said minor owns in fee, about sixty 
seven acres of land situated in said Roxbury; also, that said minor owns about 
thirty three acres in another piece in said town, of which the mother of said 
minor is seised as tenant in dower; also, that said minor owns a mill seat in said 
town, known by the name of Hunt's mill, the whole of which are estimated at 
the value of two thousand dollars; that said land is unproductive, and the fences 
decayed; that said minor possesses no means of support and education than the 
profits of said lands, which are insufficient for that purpose, praying for liberty 
to sell said lands and vest the avails thereof in other real estate, as per petition 
on file, dated the 15th day of October 1817; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Abram Bronson be, and he is 
hereby authorized and empowered under the direction of the Judge of Probate 
for the district of Woodbury, to sell the whole of said minor's real estate, and 
execute valid deed or deeds of conveyance to the purchaser or purchasers 
thereof, and to vest the avails thereof in other real estate for the benefit of said 
minor, and to receive deeds of conveyance thereof in the name of said minor, 
the said petitioner first giving bond with sufficient surety to said Judge of Pro- 
bate, conditioned for the faithful performance of said trust. 

Upon the petition of Sarah Buell of Hebron in Tolland county, shewing to 
this Assembly, that she is guardian to Gratia T. Buell, Sally A. Buell, minor 
children of John H. Buell Esquire late of said Hebron deceased; that in the dis- 
tribution of the said John H. Buell Esquire's estate, there was set out to the said 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 85 

Gratia T. and Sally A. two pieces of land lying in said Hebron; the first piece 
called the Parker farm, containing about forty acres, with a dwelling-house and 
barn thereon standing, bounded north on the highway, east on the said Sarah 
Buell and John H. Buell's land, south on Eleazer Sweetland's land, and west on 
[blank] Raynes land: second piece called the Parker back lot, containing about 
forty acres, bounded north and east on highways, south on Shipman Horton's 
land, and west on land belonging to the said Sarah Buell, praying for liberty to 
sell said land, as per petition on file, dated the 15th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the petitioner be, and she is hereby autho- 
rized and empowered to sell the above described pieces of land belonging to 
said minors, and to make and execute good and sufficient deed or deeds of the 
same, under the direction of the Judge of Probate for the district of Hebron, 
first giving good and sufficient bond to said court of Probate for a faithful dis- 
charge of the trust. 

Upon the petition of Lucy Douglass of New-London in the county of New- 
London, administratrix of the goods, chattels, estate and effects of Richard 
Douglass late of said New-London deceased, shewing to this Assembly, that 
one Daniel Douglass mortgaged to the said Richard while in full life, a house 
and garden lot subject to a previous mortgage; that the said Richard before his 
death, procured the said mortgage to be foreclosed against the said Daniel, sub- 
ject to the mortgage aforesaid; that the debt to the amount of about eight 
hundred dollars, for which said house and lot were mortgaged, is still unpaid to 
the Bank to which the same is due; that it will be for the benefit of the heirs of 
said Richard to sell the equity of redemption in the mortgaged premises, and 
apply so much of the avails there of as shall be necessary to the payment of said 
debt, as by petition on file, dated the 12th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Lucy Douglass be, and she is 
hereby authorized and empowered to sell and dispose of the interest of said 
Richard Douglass deceased, in said mortgaged estate, and to make and execute 
a good deed or deeds to the purchaser or purchasers thereof, under the direction 
of the Judge of Probate for the District of New-London, and to apply the avails 
of said house and lot in discharging the debt aforesaid: Provided the said Lucy 
first give bonds with sufficient surety to said Judge of Probate, conditioned for 
the faithful performance of said trust. 

Upon the petition of Gad Frisbie of Burlington in the County of Hartford, 
conservator of the person and estate of Sally Beckwith of said Burlington, 
shewing to this Assembly, that the said Sally is the owner of about two hundred 
dollars worth of real estate situated in said town of Burlington; that said Sally, by 



86 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

reason of mental derangement, and bodily infirmity, is wholly incapable of man- 
aging her own concerns; that said lands in their present state are totally 
unproductive; that said Sally has no relations liable by law for her support, and 
that said Sally is now maintained at the expence of said town of Burlington; 
praying for liberty to sell said lands, and to apply the avails thereof in discharge 
of the just debts of said Sally and for her future support, as per petition on file 
dated May 25th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Gad Frisbie be, and he is hereby autho- 
rized and empowered to sell and dispose of said lands of said Sally, and to make 
and execute a good deed or deeds to the purchaser or purchasers thereof; and under 
the directions of the Judge of Probate for the district of Farmington, to apply the 
avails of said lands in discharge of the just debts of said Sally, and for her future 
maintenance; provided, that the said Frisbie first give bond with sufficient surety to 
said Judge of Probate, conditioned for the faithful performance of said trust. 

Upon the petition of Allen Goodrich of Benson in the county of Rutland, 
State of Vermont, guardian of Rosamond Dudley Farnham of said Benson, 
who is a minor under the age of twenty one years, shewing to this Assembly, 
that said minor is seised in fee simple, as tenant in common, of one equal undi- 
vided third part of two certain pieces or tracts of land, lying in the town of 
Litchfield, County of Litchfield and State of Connecticut; one piece bounded 
south on highway, west on Benton Barnard's land, north, in part, on said 
Benton Barnard's land, and part on Samuel Barnard's land, east on said 
Samuel Barnard's land, containing about six acres: The other piece bounded 
north on highway, east in part on highway, and part on Roger N. Whittlesey's 
land, south and west on James Morris' land, containing about eighteen acres of 
land, and is of the value of about four hundred dollars; praying for liberty to 
sell said land, and vest the money arising from such sale, in lands in said 
Benson; as per petition on file, dated the 23d day of February A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Allen Goodrich is hereby authorized 
and empowered to sell and dispose of all that part of said pieces of land belonging 
to said minor as aforesaid, and to give good and sufficient conveyances thereof, he 
the said Allen Goodrich first giving bonds to the acceptance of the Judge of Pro- 
bate for the district of Litchfield, conditioned that he will vest the avails arising 
from the sale of said land, in lands in said Benson, to, and for the use and benefit of 
said minor, within a reasonable time from and after the time of such sale. 

Upon the memorial of Ezra Hawley of Catskill in the State of New-York, 
shewing to this Assembly, the expediency of selling certain lands lying in the 
towns of Fairfield and Trumbull in Fairfield county, belonging to Emeline 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 87 

Hawley, Harriet Hawley, William Hawley and Cordelia Hawley, all of said 
Catskill, minors under the age of twenty one years, and heirs of law of Cathar- 
ine Hawley late of said Catskill deceased, and a part of the heirs at law of Elijah 
and Deborah Burr, husband and wife, both late of said Fairfield now deceased, 
as per memorial on file, dated May 12th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Ezra Hawley be empowered and 
fully authorized, under the direction, order and approbation of the court of Pro- 
bate for Fairfield district, to sell and convey all or any [of] the real estate of said 
minors lying in the Towns of said Fairfield or Trumbull that has descended to 
them as heirs at law, from the said deceased Catharine, Elijah and Deborah, 
and as aparted and set off to the said minors in the distributions of the real 
estate of the said deceased Elijah and Deborah respectively, now in the files 
and records of the office of the said probate: Provided, however, that the said 
Ezra shall first give to the Judge of said court ample bond with sufficient surety 
in this State, to the acceptance of the Judge of said court, conditioned for the 
faithful application of the avails of said real estate to the said minors when they 
shall respectively arrive to the age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Jared Hawley of Oxford in New-Haven county, 
shewing to this Assembly, that he is father and natural guardian of Benjamin 
Hawley and Mary Hawley both minors under the age of twenty one years; that 
said minors are owners in fee, as tenants in common, of seven pieces of land 
lying in the towns of Southbury and Middlebury in said county, and Woodbury 
in Litchfield county, of the value of about two thousand six hundred and fifty 
dollars; that said lands are constantly depreciating in value, the fences in a ru- 
inous state, and are productive of but very little profit, praying for liberty to sell 
said lands, as per petition on file, dated May 12th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Jared Hawley be, and he is hereby 
authorized and empowered, under the direction of the Judge of Probate for the 
district of Woodbury, to sell the whole of said minor's lands, and execute good 
and valid deed or deeds of conveyance to the purchaser or purchasers thereof; 
and to loan the avails thereof on mortgage security, with interest payable annu- 
ally, for the benefit of said minors, the said Jared Hawley first giving bond to 
said Judge of Probate, conditioned for the faithful performance of said trust, 
and that he will account with said minors, respectively, relating to his proceed- 
ings in the premises, when they shall arrive at the age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Samuel Holkins of Hanover in the county of Grafton 
and State of New-Hampshire, shewing to this Assembly, that he is father and 
natural guardian of Eliza Holkins, Mary Holkins, Hannah Holkins and Harriet 



88 public records May, 

Holkins all minors under the age of twenty one years; that the said Eliza, Mary, 
Hannah and Harriet are each the owners of one thirteenth part of the following 
described pieces of land, situated in Enfield in Hartford county and State of 
Connecticut, as tenants in common with John Olmsted of said Enfield and 
others, viz. one piece containing about thirty acres, with a dwelling-house and 
other buildings on the same and bounds east on the town street, west on Con- 
necticut river, south on Dennis Bement, Elisha Holton and Joseph Olmsted, 
and north on land of said John Olmsted; one other piece containing about forty 
two acres, and bounds east on land of Joseph Parsons, west on land of Elisha 
Holton, and north and south on highways; one other piece containing about thirty 
acres, bounded west on ministry land and land of the devisees of Levi Booth de- 
ceased, north on highway, south partly on land of Joel Booth and partly on land of 
Dennis Bement, and east on land of said Bement; one piece containing about 
twenty acres, bounded south and east on land of Ebenezer Chapin, north on land of 
the heirs of Samuel Allen deceased, and west on the highway; Also one piece of 
meadow land lying on fresh water brook, containing about eight acres, called fresh 
water meadow; that the interest which said minors have in said lands and build- 
ings, if aparted to them in severalty, would be of very little value to hold, and that 
the same can now be sold for the best interest of said minors; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Joel Holkins Esquire, be, and he is 
hereby authorized and empowered, under the direction of the Judge of Probate 
for the district of East- Windsor, to sell said land and buildings, and to execute 
in his name valid deed or deeds to the purchaser or purchasers thereof, and to 
loan the avails thereof on interest to be paid annually, on such security as shall 
be approved by said Judge of Probate, for the necessary support and education 
of said minors; provided the said Joel Holkins Esquire, shall first give bond 
with sufficient surety to the Judge of Probate for the district of East- Windsor, 
conditioned for the faithful execution of said trust, and that he account with 
said minors severally, when they shall arrive to the age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Martin Kellogg Junior of Wethersfield in Hartford 
county, shewing to this Assembly, that he is guardian of Sabra Blinn late of 
said Wethersfield, now residing in the town of Richmond in the State of New- 
York; that said Sabra is a minor of about fifteen years of age; that said Sabra is 
seised in fee, as heir at law of her father Jonathan Blinn late deceased, of five 
several parcels of land situated in said Wethersfield; one piece containing 
about eleven acres, and is bounded west on high way, north on land of 
Epephras Andrus, east on land of Unni Robbins, south on land of Zacheus 
Brown; one other piece called the Backus lot, containing about four acres, 
bounded east on highway and land of Unni Robbins, south and west on lands of 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 89 

said Robbins, and north on land of Honor Phillips; one other piece, being part 
of the mountain lot so called, containing about six acres, bounded east on high- 
way, north and west on lands of Elisha Blinn; one other piece, being also part of 
said Backus lot, which is incumbered with the right of dower of the widow of said 
Jonathan deceased, containing about one acre and three roods [rods], bounded east 
and north on highway, south on land set off to said Sabra in the distribution of her 
father's estate, and west on lands of Unni Robbins, and the other piece, being part 
of the home-lot, and also under the incumbrance of the said widow's dower, con- 
taining about seven acres, bounded east on highway, south, west and north, on 
lands of Unni Robbins; praying for liberty to sell said lands of said minor for her 
support, &c, as per petition on file, dated the 18th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Martin Kellogg Junior be, and he is 
hereby authorized and empowered, under the direction of the Judge of Probate 
for the district of Hartford, to sell all the said lands of said minor, and to exe- 
cute valid deed or deeds to the purchaser or purchasers thereof, and to loan the 
avails thereof, with interest payable annually, on such security as shall be ap- 
proved by said Judge of Probate, for the necessary support and education of 
said minor; provided the petitioner shall first give bond with sufficient surety 
to said Judge of Probate, conditioned for the faithful performance of said trust, 
and that he account with said minor relative to his proceedings in the premises, 
when she shall arrive at the age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of George K. Nichols of the town of Stratford in Fairfield 
county, father and natural guardian of Philip R. Nichols, and Charles M. 
Nichols of said town, and Abigail G. Nichols the wife of said George, and 
guardian of William B. Lintot, Francis A. Lintot, and Catharine A. Lintot of 
said Stratford, the said Philip R., Charles M., William B., Francis A. and Cath- 
arine A. being the legitimate and minor children of said Abigail G. Nichols, 
and Jabez N. M. Hurd of Cazenovia in the county of Madison and State of 
New- York, father and natural guardian of Richard M. Hurd a minor, shewing, 
that Abiah Mansfield late of Huntington in said State of Connecticut, in the 
year 1817, died seised of certain tracts of land situated in said Huntington, and 
bounded as per said petition, and of certain fishing places mentioned in said 
petition; that said Abiah bequeathed the said premises in manner following, to 
wit; the one third part thereof to said Abiga[i]l G. Nichols in fee, the use and 
improvement of one third part thereof to said George K. Nichols during his 
life, remainder to the children of said Abigail G. Nichols, and the remaining 
third part thereof to the aforesaid Richard Mansfield Hurd, in the words fol- 
lowing, to wit; "I give and bequeath to my grandson Richard M. Hurd, the one 
third part of all my estate both real and personal, to him and his heirs and 



90 PUBLIC records May, 

assigns forever, subject however, to the following conditions, that is to say, that 
if my said grandson, Richard M. Hurd should decease and leave no legal heirs 
of his body, before he shall arrive to the age of twenty one years, then that part 
of my estate given to him as above, shall belong to, and be equally divided be- 
tween the children of my daughter Abigail G. Nichols, to them and their heirs 
forever"; that said Richard M. Hurd is seised of the one moiety of certain tracts 
of land bounded as per said petition: that said described property is, in its pres- 
ent condition, very unproductive; that the buildings and fences on said 
premises are greatly out of repair and liable to go to total decay; that said pre- 
mises cannot be divided without great injury to the owners thereof; that said 
premises cannot be sold so advantageously in parts as together, and that the in- 
terest of said minors would be promoted by a sale of said premises, as per 
petition on file, dated May 12th 1818, will more fully appear; whereupon, 

Resolved, that the interests of said minors respectively, and all their right 
and title to said premises be sold under the direction of the court of Probate for 
the district of Stratford, and that the avails thereof be vested in other real estate, 
or loaned on mortgage, as shall be most for the benefit of said minors; and that 
said George K. Nichols and said Abigail G. Nichols be, and they are hereby au- 
thorized and empowered to execute a good and valid deed or deeds of the 
interests of the children of said Abigail Grace Nichols in said premises; and 
that said Jabez N. M. Hurd, be, and he hereby is authorized and empowered to 
execute a similar deed or deeds of the right, title and interest of said Richard M. 
Hurd in or to said premises, they the said George K. Nichols, Abigail G. 
Nichols and Jabez N. M. Hurd first severally giving bond with good and suffi- 
cient surety to the satisfaction of the court of Probate within and for the district of 
Stratford, faithfully to invest the avails of all the right and interest of said minors 
respectively as aforesaid, in said premises, and to account for the avails thereof, 
when said minors shall respectively arrive to the age of twenty one years. — 

Upon the petition of William Owen of Hebron in the County of Tolland; 
shewing to this Assembly, that he is guardian to the persons and estate of his 
brothers Harrey and Alanson Owen of said Hebron: and that the petitioner, and 
Harry Talbot Owen, with said minors, are owners as tenants in common in 
equal shares, of a farm of land situated in Hebron aforesaid, containing about 
eighty acres, with a dwelling-house and barn thereon standing, which premises 
are particularly described in a deed of bargain and sale executed in due form 
and acknowledged by David Owen, late of said Hebron deceased, on the 29th 
day of September A.D. 1 809, and since recorded in the records of land in said 
town of Hebron, to which reference is had; that said property can never be ad- 
vantageously improved separately by several owners; that the petitioner and 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 9 1 

said Harry are desirous of selling their shares of said estate, to lay out the avails 
in the purchase of other new lands in the western country; that such sale would 
materially diminish the value of the two shares belonging to their younger 
brothers said minors, and whose interest would be essentially promoted by 
selling the whole tract together, and vesting the amount or proceeds of said mi- 
nors' shares in the purchase of other lands; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Abel Bissell of Hebron be, and he is hereby 
authorized and empowered, under the direction of the Judge of Probate for the 
District of Hebron, to sell at public or private sale, as shall be said Judge be 
deemed expedient and most beneficial to said minors their said two shares of 
said estate, and to execute and deliver to the purchaser or purchasers the proper 
deed or deeds thereof; and said Judge of Probate is further empowered and di- 
rected to take sufficient security to cause the proceeds of such sale to be laid 
out in the purchase of other lands for the benefit of said minors by taking bond 
from said Abel Bissell with sufficient surety or sureties to said Judge, condi- 
tioned for the faithful performance of said trust, and to render his account to 
said Judge of Probate, of his the said Abel Bissell's proceedings in the pre- 
mises when thereto required. 

Upon the petition of George J. Patten of Hartford in Hartford county, guard- 
ian to Edwin Burr a minor under the age of twenty one years, shewing to this 
Assembly, that said minor is owner of about six acres of land lying in said Hart- 
ford, near the gaol, called the workhouse lot, bounding easterly on Maiden 
Lane, southerly on Little river and northerly on land now or lately owned by 
William H. Imlay, lying in a triangular form; praying for liberty to sell said 
lands for the support and education of said minor, as per petition on file; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said George J. Patten be, and he is hereby 
empowered, under the direction of the court of Probate for the district of Hart- 
ford, to sell said tract of land and give a conveyance or deed of the same, and to 
appropriate the avails so far as necessary to the support and education of said 
minor, the said Patten first giving bond with surety to the acceptance of said 
court of Probate for the faithful performance of the aforesaid trust; provided, 
however, that such shall be the terms of sale, that at least two thousand dollars 
of the purchase money shall be secured by good notes payable at a day after the 
time when said minor may arrive to the age of twenty one years, and be secured 
by mortgage of the same premises, with interest payable annually. 

Upon the petition of Anthony P. Sanford of the town and county of New- 
Haven, conservator of John Richards of said New-Haven, praying for reasons 
therein stated, for authority to sell a certain piece of land with the buildings 



92 PUBLIC records May, 

thereon, belonging to said Richards, situated in the City of New-Haven, 
bounded as follows, northerly partly on William LeffingwelFs land, and partly 
on Elias Shipman's lands; easterly on Temple Street; southerly on land of 
Henry Denison; westerly on land of Elias Shipman, containing one third of an 
acre more or less, as per petition on file, dated 19th May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Anthony P. Sanford be, and he is 
hereby authorized and empowered to make and execute a good and legal deed or 
deeds of said described premises, on such terms as to him may seem reasonable; 
and any conveyance or deed of said described premises, made and executed by 
the said Sanford, shall, to all intents and purposes, have the same force and effect 
as a deed or conveyance thereof by the said Richards would have, been if he were 
of sound mind and memory. And the said Sanford shall, before making and exe- 
cuting such deed or conveyance, give bond with surety to the Judge of Probate 
for the district of New-Haven, to his acceptance, conditioned, that he will faith- 
fully apply the avails thereof to the benefit of said Richards, and account to him 
therefore, or to his representatives, whenever thereto legally required. 

Upon the petition of William Skiddy and Hannah B. Skiddy his wife, both 
of the city, county and State of New- York, shewing to this Assembly, that the 
said Hannah B. is a minor under the age of twenty one years, to wit; of the age 
of twenty years; that said Hannah B. is the owner in fee of about forty acres of 
land lying in the town of Wilton in Fairfield county, with an old dwelling house 
standing thereon, of the value of about three thousand dollars; that the house 
and fences are in a state of ruinous decay, and that said lands in their present 
state are productive of but little profit, and that the same may now be sold at 
their full values; shewing also, that the petitioners intend to reside statedly in 
said City of New- York, and that they cannot conveniently attend to the man- 
agement of said lands, praying for liberty and authority to sell said lands, &c, 
as per petition on file, dated the 10th day of April 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Hannah B. Skiddy be, and she is 
hereby fully authorized and empowered, jointly with the said William Skiddy, to 
sell said lands, and to make, execute and deliver good and valid deed or deeds of 
conveyance to the purchaser or purchasers thereof, which shall be as effectual, to 
all intents and purposes, to convey the rights of the petitioners in and to said 
lands, as though the said Hannah B. were of the full age of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Pierce Smith of Sterling in Windham county, shewing 
to this Assembly, that he is the guardian of the persons and estate of Archibald 
Dorrance, John Dorrance and Maria Dorrance of said Sterling, minors; and 
that the said Archibald, John and Maria do inherit by law, being heirs to Mr. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 93 

Archibald Dorrance late of said Sterling deceased, in common and undivided 
with the other heirs of said deceased, viz. Richard Dorrance, Susannah 
Dorrance and David Dorrance, about four hundred forty acres of land lying 
and being in said Sterling, with two dwelling-houses, barns and out houses 
thereon, with the incumbrance of the widow's dower; and that there are about 
nine hundred dollars in debts against said estate more than there is personal 
estate to pay, for which real estate must be sold, and that to sell a part of said 
estate would greatly injure the value and sale of the remainder; and that the use 
and improvement of said minors' shares in said estate doth now produce to 
them but little if any profit; and that said lands and buildings are fast going out 
of repair and to decay; and that said minors' share or interest in said estate, may 
now be sold so as to be greatly to their interest and benefit; and praying for lib- 
erty and authority to sell and convey all the interest of said minors in and to said 
lands and buildings, as per petition on file, dated 30th day of April A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that permission and authority be, and the same is 
hereby granted to the said Pierce Smith to sell and convey all the interest of the 
said minors in and to the lands and buildings above mentioned and described, 
under the direction of the Judge of Probate for the district of Plainfield, he the 
said Smith first giving good and sufficient bonds, to the acceptance of the said 
Judge, conditioned that he will faithfully account with said minors for the 
avails of said lands and buildings, when the said minors shall come to the age 
of twenty one years. 

Upon the petition of Matthew Carter and Martha Carter his wife, shewing 
that they are foreigners and natives of great Britain, and praying for leave to 
purchase, hold and convey real estate in this State, as by said petition on file, 
dated the 19th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said petitioners and each of them be, and 
they hereby are respectively authorized and empowered to purchase hold and 
convey real estate in this State, in the same manner that they might or could do 
if they were native citizens thereof. 

Upon the petition of Matthew Carter, praying for reasons therein stated, that 
Matthew Carter Senior of Hampshire in England, and Henry Freeland of 
Sussex in England, may be permitted to receive mortgages of real estate in this 
State, as per petition on file, dated the 19th day of May A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Matthew Carter Senior and the said 
Henry Freeland and each of them be, and they hereby are authorized and empow- 
ered to take receive and hold a mortgage or mortgages of real estate in this State, in 
the same manner as native citizens thereof; and that all mortgages of real estate in 



94 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

this State, executed to them or either of them, shall to all intents and purposes, have 
the same force and effect as if executed to native citizens of the said State. 

Upon the petition of William Kinneer of Derby in the county of New-Haven, 
shewing to this Assembly that he is an alien, and incapable of purchasing and 
holding real estate, as per petition on file, dated the 8th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said William Kinneer have licence, 
power and authority, and the same are hereby given to him, to purchase inherit 
and hold real estate, and to sell, convey, devise and transmit by descent, the 
same, as effectually, to every intent and purpose as though he were a native citi- 
zen of this State. 

Upon the petition of Martha Jones Martin of New-Haven, shewing to this 
Assembly, that her husband Christopher Martin late of New-Haven deceased, 
was a Dane by birth, and that on the third day of March 1814, he the said 
Christop[h]er purchased of Jonas Prentice, one fourth of an acre and twenty 
eight rods of land, situate in New-Haven, with a dwelling-house thereon, and 
that with a view to convey the same to her said husband, he the said Prentice ex- 
ecuted and delivered a deed under his hand, dated said third of March, which 
was duly acknowledged and recorded in the sixty second volume 306 page of 
the land records of the town of New-Haven, praying that said deed may be de- 
clared to be as complete and full evidence of title in him the said Christopher, 
and all persons claiming under him, as though, at the time of executing the 
same, he had been a native citizen of this State; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said deed be, and the same is hereby de- 
clared to be as valid and effectual in law, for the conveyance of the estate 
therein mentioned, as though he said Christopher had been a native citizen of 
this State, at the time of executing the same. 

Upon the petition of John Ayres a prisoner now confined in New-Gate 
prison, shewing to this Assembly, that he is now confined for the payment of 
cost of prosecution, praying to be discharged therefrom, as per petition on file, 
dated May 19th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that he be discharged from further confinement 
in said prison, provided, he the said Ayres shall execute his obligation to the 
Treasurer of this State on demand for the residue of said bill of cost. — 

Upon the petition of John Daikins, shewing, that at the Superiour court 
holden at Danbury within and for the county of Fairfield, at their September 
term A.D. 1814, the petitioner was convicted of the crime of Burglary, with an 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 95 

attempt to commit personal violence on the bodies of Elnathan Knapp and 
Nathan Knapp, and sentenced by said court to confinement in New-Gate 
prison during his natural life, upon which he is now confined in said prison; 
praying to be released and discharged from said confinement, as per petition on 
file, dated 17th day of May A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said John Daikins be, and he is hereby 
discharged and released from his confinement in New-Gate prison, upon his 
paying to the Treasurer of this State the amount of the costs taxed upon the 
prosecution against said Daikins, upon which he was so as aforesaid convicted, 
or upon his securing the same to the satisfaction of the Treasurer, to be paid in 
six months from the rising of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Epaphras Hills Junr. of East-Hartford in Hartford county, 
setting forth, that in February 1814, he was convicted of Arson before the Honour- 
able Superiour court for Hartford county, and thereupon sentenced to seven years 
hard labour and imprisonment in New-Gate prison, and to the payment of one 
hundred forty six dollars sixty five cents cost of prosecution, praying for a release 
from further confinement, as per petition on file dated 16th May 1818; 

Resolved, that upon said Hills' executing his promissory note to the Trea- 
surer of this State, for so much of the costs as remains unpaid, he the said Hills 
be released and discharged from further confinement in said prison. 

Upon the petition of Hiram Hull a prisoner now confined in New-Gate 
prison, shewing to this Assembly, that the term of his imprisonment will expire 
in August 1818, praying remission of cost of prosecution, taxed at one hundred 
dollars fifty four cents, as per petition on file, bearing date 19th May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Hull be released from further con- 
finement after the expiration of said sentence; provided that he the said Hull 
execute his obligation for the amount of said bill of cost payable to the Trea- 
surer of this State on demand. 

Upon the petition of Isaac Huston a prisoner now confined in New-Gate 
prison, shewing to this Assembly, that before the Honourable Superiour Court 
holden at Danbury, September term 1815, he was convicted of the crime of 
Burglary, and sentenced to three years confinement to hard labour in said 
prison, and for the payment of costs taxed one hundred sixty three dollars sixty 
three cents, as per petition on file dated May 2d 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that at the expiration of said term of imprison- 
ment, the petitioner be discharged from any further confinement in said prison, 



96 PUBLIC RECORDS May, 

on his giving his note to the Treasurer of this State for the payment of said costs 
of prosecution. 

Upon the petition of William Riley a prisoner now confined in New-Gate 
Prison, shewing to this Assembly, that he was sentenced to said prison on the 
7th day of January 1807, during life, praying to be released from further con- 
finement, as per petition on file, bearing date 8th May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Riley be released from further im- 
prisonment in said prison, provided that he the said Riley execute his note 
payable to the Treasurer of this State, for whatever costs may have been taxed 
against him in the prosecution aforesaid. — 

Upon the petition of Abel Stark of Salisbury in the county of Litchfield, 
shewing to this Assembly, that in the year 1810, he was convicted of the crime of 
passing a counterfeit bank bill, before the Superiour court holden at New-Haven in 
the county of New-Haven, for which he was sentenced to a certain term of con- 
finement in New-Gate prison, which punishment he has suffered and is now 
discharged; and since then he has conducted as a good and faithful citizen of this 
State, praying that he may be pardoned of any further disability in consequence of 
committing said crime, as by his petition on file, dated the 1 2th day of May 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said Abel Stark be, and he is hereby par- 
doned from any further disability in consequence of committing said crime. 

Upon the petition of Henry Stevanus a prisoner now confined in New-Gate 
prison, shewing to this Assembly, that he was convicted of the crime of Bur- 
glary and perjury, before the Honourable Superiour court holden at Hartford, 
February term 1816, and sentenced to hard labour in said prison for the term of 
two years and six months, and for the payment of costs of prosecution, taxed at 
fifty eight dollars eighty eight cents; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that at the expiration of the said term of imprison- 
ment, the petitioner be discharged from any further imprisonment in said prison; 
provided, that during the remainder of said term, the said petitioner be of good be- 
haviour; and provided also, that the petitioner give to the Treasurer of this State, 
such security as he may be able, for the payment of said costs of prosecution. 

Upon the memorial of Sylvester B. Waid of Lyme in New-London county, 
shewing to this Assembly, that by a judgment of the Superiour court holden at 
Norwich within and for said county in January last, he was convicted of the 
crime of Burglary, and ordered to be punished by confinement in New-Gate 
prison; that excepting this offence, his character is and has been uniformly 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 97 

good; that he is poor; that he is young, and that the offence was committed 
under circumstances, which entitles him to the merciful interposition of this 
Assembly in his favour, praying for a pardon, &c. as per memorial on file dated 
the first day of May 1818; 

Resolved, that the memorialist be, and he hereby is pardoned for the offence 
aforesaid. 

Upon the petition of Joseph Bulkley &c. against the Union Company, rela- 
tive to injuries sustained by sundry proprietors of lands on Connecticut river, 
by the works of said company, as per petition on file dated May 1815; 55 

Timothy Pitkin, Jabez Clark and John Hall Esquires, having been appointed 
by the legislature at May session 1 8 17, a committee to examine the facts stated in 
said petition, and report their opinion thereon; and having reported to this As- 
sembly at the October session 1817; which report not being satisfactory to both 
parties, it is agreed that said commissioners be reappointed to further examine, 
and again report relative to the facts stated in said petition, and their opinion 
thereon, in the same manner as if said report had not been made; thereupon, 

Resolved, that said commissioners be, and they are hereby reappointed to view 
and examine the works of said Union Company, and hear the parties relative to the 
facts stated in said petition, and make report of the facts found by them, and then- 
opinion thereupon to the next, or some future session of the General Assembly. 

Whereas it is represented to this Assembly, that the committee appointed by a 
resolve of the General Assembly at their session in October 1817, on the petition 
of Nicoll Fosdick &c. were prevented from attending on the business of their ap- 
pointment in season to report to this Assembly; and whereas it further appears, 
that it is important that the same be speedily accomplished; therefore, 56 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Matthew Griswold, Samuel Green and 
Moses Warren Esquires, or either two of them, be, and they are hereby ap- 
pointed a committee, at the expence of the petitioners, to view the aforesaid 



55. For the Assembly's May 1817 resolution appointing the committee, see S.R., XVIII, 224, 
224n, where the petition itself is more fully summarized. The committee's lengthy October 1817 
report, in which it recommended that the banks of the river be protected by wharves, part of the 
expense be borne by the Union Company and part by the landowners, generated a remonstrance by 
Bulkley and his group. The result was the present action. Archives, Trade and Maritime Affairs, Ser. 
2, 1, 42^3. 

56. For the appointment of the committee in October 1817, see S.R., XVIII, 277-78, 278n. 
Oliver Comstock was initially proposed as a member of the new committee appointed in the 
following resolution; the House replaced him with Green and the Council concurred. Archives, 
Travel, Ser. 2, XI, 53. The committee's report led to the incorporation of the Groton and Stonington 
Turnpike Company in October 1818, below, pp. 412-14, 412n. 



98 PUBLIC records May, 

route, and if they deem it expedient, to lay out a road touching the points men- 
tioned in said petition, and to assess damages to individuals, first giving notice to 
any two of the selectmen of the towns through which said road will pass, of the 
time and place of entering upon the business of their appointment, said notice to 
be given at least ten days before they enter on such service; and they are to make 
report of their doings to this, or some future session of the General Assembly. 

Upon the petition of George Haley &c. shewing to this Assembly, that for 
public and private convenience, a bridge is much wanted over Mistic river, at 
and near Pistol point, so called, praying for liberty to erect a bridge over said 
river, with the right of collecting reasonable tolls; and that a committee be ap- 
pointed to view and establish the place of erecting said bridge, and to lay out 
suitable ground for building abutments and ways for the same, over and across 
the lands of Nathaniel Clift, Ebenezer Denison of Stonington, and Wealthy 
Wolfe, John A. Wolfe, Wealthy Ann Wolfe, Nathaniel Wolfe, Albert Wolfe, 
Ambrose H. Grant, Jedediah Randall and Amos Tift, on the west side of said 
river; and over and across the lands of Nathaniel Clift and Ebenezer Denison, 
as per petition and citation on file, dated the 24th day of March 1818; which peti- 
tion having been duly served on the towns of Stonington and Groton, and on 
Nathaniel Clift, Ebenezer Denison, Ambrose H. Grant, Jedediah Randall, Wealthy 
Wolfe, John A. Wolfe, Wealthy Ann Wolfe, Nathaniel Wolfe, Albert Wolfe and 
Amos Tift; and the petitioners having appeared, the respondents being three times 
publickly called, made default; and this Assembly having enquired into the facts 
stated in said petition, find them true, and do grant the prayer thereof; 57 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Moses Warren, William Randall and John 
O. Miner be, and they are hereby appointed a committee to establish the place 
mentioned in said petition, as the place for erecting said bridge, together with 
the width of the same, and the manner in which said bridge shall be con- 
structed, and to direct a suitable and convenient draw to be made therein; and 
also to lay out suitable sufficient and convenient grounds on each side of said 
river for abutments and pass-ways to and from said bridge, and for procuring 
stone, gravel and dirt for making the same, over and across the lands of A. 
[N.?] Clift, Ebenezer Denison, Wealthy Wolfe, John Anthony Wolfe, Wealthy 
Ann Wolfe, Nathaniel Wolfe, Albert Wolfe, Ambrose H. Grant, Jedediah 
Randall and Amos Tift, mentioned in said petition; and to assess damages to 



57. The petitioners argued that there was much trade and commerce between the two sides of 
the river and that the ferry authorized for that location had been abandoned. For the Assembly's next 
action on this matter, see below, pp. 414, 41 4n; it led to the incorporation of the Mystic River Bridge 
Company in 1819: Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, III, 47, 52. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 99 

individuals over whose lands the same may be laid; and to establish the rates of 
toll to be collected at said bridge; all which is to be done at the cost and expence 
of said petitioners: said committee are hereby authorized and empowered to 
deviate from the prayer of said petition so far only as relates to the place of in- 
tersecting the old road in Groton on the west end of the contemplated ways, so 
as they may intersect said old road, at or near the late dwelling-house of 
Edward Parker late of said Groton deceased, the said committee first giving 
twelve days notice before they enter upon said business, to the said towns of 
Stonington and Groton, and to the aforesaid respondents, under their own 
hands, of the time and place of their entering on said business, and to make 
report to this, or some future session of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Obadiah Platts and others, praying for a Turnpike road 
from Pettipauge Point through North-Killingworth to the stage road in 
Guilford, as per petition on file, dated the 28th day of April 1817; said petition 
was brought to the May session of said Assembly in 1817, and was continued 
to the October session of the same year with an order of notice, when the re- 
spondents were defaulted, and after hearing the petitioners, said Assembly 
resolved, that Shubael Griswold, George W. Stanley and Josiah Griffin Es- 
quires be a committee to go out at the expence of the petitioners, to enquire into 
the facts stated in said petition, and the expediency of the road therein pro- 
posed, and report make with their opinion, at the present session: And at the 
present session, said committee report, that after giving due notice of the time, 
place and business of their meeting, they met at said Pettipauge point on the 18th 
day of November 1817, and proceeded to view the route proposed for said road, 
and on enquiry and examination, found that a Turnpike road, as prayed for in 
said petition, would be of great utility and convenience to the inhabitants in the 
vicinity, and useful to the public, &c. and said report having been accepted, 58 

Resolved by this Assembly, that George W. Stanley, Josiah Griffin and 
Moses Warren Esquires, be a committee whose duty it shall be to survey and 
lay out a Turnpike road in the most convenient and suitable place from 
Pettipauge point in Saybrook to near the old meeting-house in North-Killing- 
worth, and from thence to the stage road in Guilford, within one fourth of a mile 
of the dwelling-house of Samuel Chittenden, and to assess the damages done to 



58. For earlier actions on this petition, see S.R., XVIII, 219-20, 220n, 281, 281n. It led to the 
incorporation of the Pettipauge and Guilford Turnpike Company in October 1818: below, pp. 415— 
18, 41 5n. The full committee report, dated November 20, 1817, and containing a number of 
observations about the economic benefits of the proposed road for the surrounding area, can be 
found in Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, XV, 28. 



100 PUBLIC records May, 

individuals thereby, and make report of their doings to the session of this Assem- 
bly to be holden in New-Haven on the second Thursday of October next. 

Upon the petition of John Tully Whittlesey of Saybrook in Middlesex 
county, against said town of Saybrook and Jedediah Tryon, shewing to this As- 
sembly, that he is an owner and attendant of the ferry across Connecticut river, 
between the towns of Saybrook and Lyme, called Saybrook Ferry; that he re- 
sides about half a mile from said ferry; that there is no ferry-house, nor any 
kind of shelter for the accommodation of the ferrymen and travellers, nearer 
than one half mile of said ferry; that there are no houses of public entertain- 
ment within several miles of said ferry; that no accommodations for the 
ferrymen and travellers, can be obtained by the purchase of private property 
near said ferry; shewing also, that within fifty or sixty rods of said ferry wharf, 
there is a large tract of public or common land belonging to said Saybrook, on 
which a ferry-house might be erected without detriment to the public, or the 
rights of individuals, praying for liberty to erect a ferry-house on said common 
lands, and that a committee be appointed to designate the place where said 
ferry-house shall be erected, as per petition on file, dated May 2d 1818; — The 
petitioner appeared, and said town of Saybrook being three times publickly 
called, made default of appearance; the said Jedediah Tryon also appeared, and 
the parties were fully heard on said petition; 59 

Resolved by this Assembly, that Matthew Griswold, Benjamin Coit, and 
Christopher Griffing Esquires, be, and they are hereby appointed a committee, 
at the expence of the petitioner, to enquire relating to the facts stated in said pe- 
tition, and report the same, with their opinion thereon, to the next, or some 
future session of the General Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Stephen Abbott of Norwalk in Fairfield county, 
shewing to this Assembly, that by sundry losses and misfortunes, he has 
become insolvent and unable to pay his just debts, praying for an act of insol- 
vency in his favour, as per petition on file, dated April 29th 1818; 

Resolved, that said petition be continued to the session of this Assembly to 
be holden at New-Haven on the second Thursday of October next, and that 
notice of the pendency thereof be given to such of the creditors of said peti- 
tioner as reside in the City of New- York, by publishing a copy of this resolve in 



59. The House initially rejected this petition, but agreed to the present action after a conference 
with the Council: Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, IV, 120. The Assembly granted the request in October: 
below, pp. 430-3 1 . 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 101 

the Spectator, a paper printed in said city of New- York, three weeks succes- 
sively, at least six weeks before the sitting of said Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Benjamin Bacon and others residing in the vicinity of 
Quinabauge river in New-London county, praying for certain alterations in the 
existing laws, and for certain additional legal provisions relating to the fishery 
in said river; 

Resolved said petition be, and the same is hereby continued to the session of 
the General Assembly to be held at New-Haven in October next; and that the 
petitioners give notice of the pendency of said petition, by publishing this re- 
solve in a news paper printed in the City of Norwich in said county, three weeks 
successively, at least six weeks before said October session of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Richard Bacon of Simsbury in the county of Hartford, 
shewing to this Assembly, that by reason of misfortunes, he is unable to pay his 
just debts; praying the Honourable Assembly to take his unhappy case into 
their wise consideration, and upon his delivering to assignees all his property, 
except such as is exempt from execution, to free and liberate him from all debts 
due from him at the date of his petition; as by pe[ti]tion on file, dated the 22d 
day of April 1818, may appear; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the further consideration of this petition be 
referred to the General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the second 
Thursday of October A.D. 1818; and that the petitioner give notice of the pen- 
dency of said petition, by publishing this resolve in the New-York Advertiser & 
newspaper printed in the city of New- York, three weeks successively, the last 
publication to be at least four weeks before the said second Thursday of Octo- 
ber 1818, and by leaving a true and attested copy of this petition, citation, and 
resolve, with Walter Mitchell Esquire, of said Hartford, attorney to Epaphras 
Burrows of Worthington, State of Ohio; and a like copy with Alfred Cowles of 
Farmington in said county, attorney to Richard Robinson of Attleborough in the 
State of Massachusetts; and a like copy with Elizur Goodrich Junior of said Hart- 
ford, attorney to William A. Howard of Providence, Rhode-Island, which shall be 
sufficient notice to all parties living out of this State, to appear and shew cause. 

Upon the petition of Jonathan Beckwith and Jabez Swan Junior, society 
committee of the ecclesiastical Society of Millington in East-Haddam, 
shewing to this Assembly, that Thomas Beebe late of said East-Haddam, de- 
ceased, by his last will and testament, made certain donations to said society, 
under certain restrictions and conditions; and that other monies belong to said 
society, praying this Assembly, that said donations made to said society by the 



102 public records May, 

said last will and testament of the said Thomas Beebe, together with other 
monies belonging to said society, not yet established as a permanent fund, be 
established a permanent fund for the support of the gospel in said society, ac- 
cording to the Presbyterian order; 60 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the further consideration of said petition, be 
continued to the General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the second 
Thursday of October next; and that notice of the pendency thereof be given by 
publishing the same in the Republican Advocate printed at New-London, and 
in the Connecticut Courant printed at Hartford, three weeks successively, at 
least six weeks before the sitting of said Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Charles Francis, shewing to this Assembly, that he is 
insolvent, praying for an act of insolvency discharging him from his debts, as 
per petition on file, dated the 21st day of April 1818; 

Ordered, that said petition be continued to the next session of this Assembly 
to be holden at New-Haven; and that notice of the pendency thereof, be given by 
publishing this order for three weeks successively, in a News-paper printed in the 
City of New- York, at least six weeks before the first day of the said session. 

Upon the petition of Beebe Hine against his creditors, praying for an act of 
insolvency, as per petition on file, dated 21st of March A.D. 1818; 

Resolved, that said petition be continued to the General Assembly to be 
holden at New-Haven, within and for said State, on the second Thursday of Oc- 
tober next; and that the petitioner cause notice of the pendency of said petition 
to be given by publishing this resolve in the New-York Spectator, a paper 
printed in the City of New- York, three weeks successively, at least six weeks 
before the session of said Assembly; which publication shall be sufficient 
notice to all creditors living out of this State. 

Upon the petition of Daniel Holt of Harwington in Litchfield county, con- 
servator of the person and estate of Nathaniel Moody, praying, for reasons 
therein stated, for liberty to sell certain lands of said Moody therein described; 



60. For the full petition, dated April 8, 1818, and including a copy of Beebe's will, see 
Archives, Ecclesiastical Affairs, Ser. 2, II, 1 8. The Assembly granted the request in October: below, 
pp. 427-28. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 103 

Resolved, that the consideration of said petition be, and the same is hereby 
continued to the session of this Assembly to be held at New-Haven in October 
next; and that the petitioner give notice of the pendency thereof by publishing 
this resolve in the newspaper printed at Litchfield in Litchfield county, three 
weeks successively, at least six weeks before said session of Assembly. 

Upon the petition of the directors of the New-Milford Toll Bridge company; 
shewing to this Assembly, that in May 1803, the Honourable General Assem- 
bly incorporated said company, and granted them the right of collecting certain 
rates of toll at said bridge, specified in said grant; that the present rates of toll, 
considering the ordinary decay of said bridge, and the damage recently re- 
ceived from the ice, &c. are not sufficient to maintain and keep said bridge in 
repair, praying this Assembly to increase the rates of toll on said bridge, as per 
petition on file, dated the 9th day of May 1818; 61 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said petition be, and the same is hereby con- 
tinued to the session of this Assembly to be held at New-Haven in October 
next; and that notice of the pendency thereof be given by publishing this re- 
solve in the newspaper printed at Litchfield in Litchfield county, three weeks 
successively, at least six weeks before said next session of this Assembly. 

Upon the petition of Thomas Miller, Elias Peck and Mark Dodge, society 
committee for the ecclesiastical Society of New-Salem in New-London 
county, shewing to this Assembly, that Thomas Beebe late of East-Haddam in 
the county of Middlesex, deceased, by his last will and testament, made a do- 
nation to said society, under certain restrictions and conditions therein 
mentioned; and that certain other monies belong to said society, praying this 
Assembly that the monies belonging to said society, be made a permanent fund 
for the support of the gospel in said society, on the presbyterian or congrega- 
tional order, agreeably to the will of the said Thomas Beebe; 62 

61 . This bridge company had been incorporated in May 1803: S.R., XI, 261-63. The full petition 
can be found in Archives, Travel, Ser. 2, II, 102. The petitioners noted that assessments on the 
proprietors had been necessary for upkeep and that the authorized tolls were lower than those on other 
bridges; they asked for specific increases in the rates. The houses differed over whether to continue the 
petition or to grant the request immediately, and the House agreed with the Council to continue it after 
a conference. The Assembly granted the request in October: below, pp. 415, 415n. 

62. For a related matter, see above, pp. 101-2. For the full petition, dated May 12, 1818, and 
including a copy of Beebe's will, see Archives, Ecclesiastical Affairs, Ser. 2, 1, 143. The Assembly 
granted the request in October: below, p. 427, 



104 PUBLIC records May, 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said petition be, and the same is hereby con- 
tinued to the General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven in October next; 
and that notice of the pendency thereof be given by publishing this resolve in 
the Connecticut Gazette printed at New-London, three weeks successively, at 
least six weeks before the sitting of said Assembly. 

Upon the petition of David Ripley of Fairfield in the county of Fairfield, 
shewing to this Assembly, that he is utterly insolvent and unable to pay his 
debts, and praying to be discharged therefrom, or such other relief as said As- 
sembly may grant, as by his petition on file, bearing date the 6th day of May 
A.D. 1818, may more fully appear; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the publication of this resolve in the news- 
paper call the New-York Spectator printed in the City of New- York, and in the 
newspaper called the Republican Farmer, printed in the Borough of Bridgeport 
in Fairfield County, for three weeks successively, at least six weeks before the 
second Thursday of October next, shall be sufficient notice to all persons inter- 
ested in the subject matter of said petition, on whom actual service has not been 
made, to appear and defend therein; and the said petition is hereby continued to 
the next session of this Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the said 
second Thursday of October. 

Upon the petition of Josiah Rose of Lisbon in New-London county, against 
his creditors, praying for an act of insolvency, as per petition on file, dated 
March 11th 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said petition be, and the same is hereby 
continued to the General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the second 
Thursday of October next; and that the petitioner give notice of the pendency of 
said petition, by causing this resolve to be published three weeks successively, at 
least six weeks before the session of said Assembly, in the New-York Herald, and 
in the Providence Gazette, or some public newspaper published in Providence in 
the State of Rhode-Island; which publications shall be sufficient notice to all the 
creditors living out of this State, to appear and defend against said petition. 

Upon the petition of Thomas Stewart of Griswold in the county of New- 
London, against his creditors, praying for an act of insolvency, as per petition 
on file, dated the 11th day of March A.D. 1818; 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the said petition be, and the same is hereby 
continued to the General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the second 
Thursday of October next; and that the petitioner give notice of the pendency of 
said petition by causing this resolve to be published three weeks successively, at 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 105 

least six weeks before the session of said Assembly, in the New-York Herald, and 
in the Boston Chronicle; which publications shall be sufficient notice to all the 
creditors living out of this State, to appear and defend against said petition. 

Upon the petition of the Still River Turnpike Company, shewing to this As- 
sembly, that they have at great expence, completed that part of said road which 
leads from Winsted meeting house northwardly to the extremity of their limits, 
and have erected a gate on said road north of its intersection with the Hartland 
Turnpike; that it would be for the interests of said company, and not injurious 
to the public, to remove said gate to some convenient place south of said inter- 
section, and north of the dwelling house of the Reverend James Beach, praying 
the General Assembly to enlarge the powers of the commissioners on said 
road, so as to enable them to remove and establish said gate as aforesaid; 63 

Resolved by this Assembly, that said petition be continued to the next session 
of this Assembly to be holden at New-Haven on the second Thursday of October 
next; and that the petitioners give notice to all concerned of the pendency 
thereof, by publishing this resolve in one of the newspapers printed in Hartford 
three weeks, at least six weeks before said next session of this Assembly. — 

Granted to His Excellency Oliver Wolcott Esquire, six hundred dollars for 
the first half of his Salary, as Govenour of this State the current year. 

Granted to His Honour Jonathan Ingersoll Esquire, four hundred and fifty 
dollars for the first half of his Salary, as Lieutenant Governour of this State the 
current year. 

Granted to Andrew Kingsbury Esquire, four hundred sixteen dollars and 
sixty seven cents for the last half of his salary as Treasurer of this State the year 
ending May 1818. 

Granted to Thomas Day Esquire, eighty four dollars for his salary as Secre- 
tary of this State the year ending May 1818. 

Granted to Elisha Colt Esquire, five hundred dollars for the last half of his 
salary as Controller of Public Accounts the year ending May 1818. 

Granted to James Hillhouse Esquire, five hundred dollars for the last half of 
his salary as Commissioner of the School Fund the year ending May 1818. 

Granted to Thomas Day Esquire, three hundred dollars for his salary as Re- 
porter of Judicial Decisions the year ending June 1st 1818. 



63. This turnpike company had been incorporated in May 1815: S.R., XVII, 375-77, 375n. The 
Assembly rejected this petition in October 1818: Rejected Bills, 1818-1821, Box 5, 1818, folder 5, 
docs. 89-92. 



106 PUBLIC RECORDS 

This Assembly grant to Andrew Kingsbury Esquire, for his services as 
Treasurer of the State, from the Election day to the time that his successor took 
charge of the office, the sum of sixty dollars. 64 

Resolved by this Assembly, that the unfinished business of this session be con- 
tinued to the next General Assembly to be holden at New-Haven in October next. 65 



64. For Kingsbury's replacement as treasurer by Isaac Spencer 2nd, see above, pp. 7, 7n. 

65. Unrecorded in the Public Records was the adoption by the House of Representatives of new 
rules of procedure. Committees to revise the rules had been appointed at both the October 1817 and 
May 1818 sessions. During discussions in May, speakers stated that the revised draft consisted 
mainly of the old rules; the most important change, according to the Courant, was the establishment 
of a standing committee on finance. Federalist members remarked ironically that a new rule 
directing the members to stand to be counted during votes in the House amounted to a revival of the 
principles of the "Stand-Up Law," which had been repealed at the October 1817 session amidst 
great controversy; other speakers defended the new way of proceeding as more efficient and 
dignified than the old method of dividing the House, which involved the members physically 
leaving their seats to be counted in groups in the affirmative and negative. House Proceedings of 
Oct. 10, 24, 1817, May 15, 16, 18, 1818: Herald, Oct. 14, 28, 1817, Courant, May 26, 1818, 
Mercury, May 19, 26, 1818; "Letter from a Member," Courant, June 16, 1818. The printed rules, 
which later in the year served as the basis for the procedures of the Constitutional Convention, 
appeared as Rules of the House of Representatives in the General Assembly of Connecticut (n.p., 
[1818]); below, pp. 149, 152, 166n. 

Also unrecorded was a matter of governmental organization that, in addition to the major 
reform issues discussed at this session, occupied considerable time. An unsuccessful bill, intro- 
duced by representative George Hubbard of Stonington, would have provided for the annual 
appointment of county sheriffs by a concurrent vote of both houses of the Assembly and the 
repeal of that part of the law that empowered the governor to appoint with the concurrence of the 
Council. In the extensive debate that followed, members rehearsed the law, history, and prece- 
dents for the established mode of appointment. Republican and Tolerationist supporters of the bill 
argued that not all counties were represented on the Council and that the participation of the 
House was necessary to ensure representative appointments. Federalist opponents contended that 
the proposal violated the division of powers between executive and legislature. A Federalist com- 
mentator summarized the issue from his perspective by observing that sheriffs "have from time 
immemorial, and by law, been appointed by the governor and council, and held their place during 
good behaviour," and that there was no way to remove them except by repealing the law. He 
agreed with other Federalists that the measure was intended to open to door for reform appoint- 
ees, and noted with satisfaction that although the bill had passed in the House, it was defeated in 
the Council by Governor Wolcott's casting vote. The issue of sheriffs' appointment was taken up 
by the Constitutional Convention, which limited tenure to three years, subject to removal by the As- 
sembly. Rejected Bills, 18 15- 18 17, Box 4, 181 7, folder 18, doc. 119; House Proceedings of May 20 
or 21, 22, 27, 29, June 4, 1818: Courant, May 26, June 2, 16, 1818, Mercury, May 26, June 2, 1818; 
"Letter from a Member," Courant, June 16, 1818. For the current provisions, which provided for ap- 
pointment of sheriffs by the governor and Council with unspecified tenure, see Stat. Conn.. 1808, p. 
599; Zephaniah Swift observed that the appointment was, in effect, for good behavior, with removal 
by the governor and Council "upon proper reasons." Swift, System of the Laws. I. 90. 



GOVERNOR OLIVER WOLCOTT: 
OPENING SPEECH, MAY 1818 SESSION 1 

[The Times, May 19, 1818] 

Gentlemen of the Council, Mr. Speaker, and 
Gentlemen of the House of Representatives. 

The renewed manifestation of public approbation, by which I have been des- 
ignated to preside in the councils of this state, has affected me with profound 
sensibility, and strengthened those sentiments of affection and gratitude, which I 
have ever cherished for my fellow citizens. Relying on their magnanimity, and 
on your indulgent favors to excuse involuntary errors and deficiencies, I have ac- 
cepted the trust, and now invite your co-operation in exertions to promote the 
public good, imploring the Supreme Being to guide and direct our consultations. 

As a portion of the people have expressed a desire that the form of civil gov- 
ernment in this state should be revised, this highly interesting subject will 
probably engage your deliberations. I presume that it will not be proposed by 
any one, to impair our institutions, or to abridge any of the rights and privileges 
of the people. — The state of Connecticut, as at present constituted, is, in my 
opinion, the most venerable & precious monument of republican government 
existing among men. With the exception of less than two years from its settle- 
ment, embracing a period nearly coeval with the revival of civil and religious 
liberty in Europe, all the powers of government have been directly derived 
from the people. The Governors and Councillors have been annually, and the 
representatives of towns semi-annually, elected by the freemen, who have 
always constituted the great body of the people. Nor has the manifestations of 
the power of the freemen been confined to the elections. They have ever been 
accustomed to public consultations and deliberations of intricacy and impor- 
tance. Their meetings have been generally conducted with the same order and 
decorum, as those of this assembly. — No instance is known in which a single 
life has been lost, in consequence of any mob, tumult, or popular commotion. 
The support of religion, elementary schools, paupers, public roads and 
bridges, comprising about eight-tenths of the public expences, has been con- 
stantly derived from taxes, imposed by the votes of the people, and the most 
interesting regulations of our police have ever been, and still are, enforced by 
officers deriving their powers from annual popular appointments. 

Prior to the establishment of American Independence, the Charter of 
Charles the 2d of England, was viewed as the palladium of the liberties of 



1. The context and significance of this speech is discussed above, pp. xvi-xvii. 



108 PUBLIC records May, 

Connecticut. — It surely merited all the attachment it received; for whatever 
had been the claims of the British Crown or Nation, to jurisdiction or territory, 
they were all, with mere nominal exceptions, surrendered to our ancestors, by that 
instrument: especially there was expressly conceded to them and their posterity, 
the inestimable privilege of being governed by municipal regulations, framed and 
executed by rulers of their own appointment. The revolutionary war of course, oc- 
casioned no change or dissolution of our social system. Considered merely as an 
instrument defining the powers and duties of Magistrates and Rulers, the Charter 
may justly be considered as unprovisional [sic] and imperfect; yet it ought to be 
recollected that what is now its greatest defect, was formerly a pre-eminent advan- 
tage, it being then highly important to the people, to acquire the greatest latitude of 
authority, with an exemption from British interference and control. 

If I correctly comprehend the wishes which have been expressed by a por- 
tion of our fellow citizens, they are now desirous, as the sources of 
apprehension from external causes are at present happily closed, that the legis- 
lative, executive, and judicial authorities of their own government, may be 
more precisely defined and limited, and the rights of the people declared and 
acknowledged. It is your province to dispose of this important subject, in such 
a manner as will best promote general satisfaction and tranquility. 

As Congress have repeatedly declined to exercise the power with which they 
are invested on the subject of Bankruptcies, 2 it deserves your consideration 
whether a revision of our Insolvent Laws has not become expedient. Although 
fraudulent Bankrupts merit severe punishment, yet those who are impoverished 
by misfortunes, and who render all the justice in their power, are entitled to sym- 
pathy and protection. To accomplish any of the purposes of justice, precise 
statutory regulations are wanting. Merely to discharge the persons of insolvent 
debtors from imprisonment, leaving their acquisitions liable to attachment, must 
either render them unprofitable members of community, or compel them to mi- 
grate from the state, however meritorious or unfortunate, or present temptations 
for dishonest concealments of property, which will rarely be resisted. 

The practice of granting Acts of Incorporation has produced great changes 
in the relations of property, and the ancient modes of transacting business in 
our country; although partial inconveniences have been experienced, yet it is 
certain that the effects of incorporations in this State, has hitherto been benefi- 
cial. Being created by the Law, and having acquired the possession of a great 
amount of property, they are entitled to ample protection. As important conse- 
quences in respect to the rule of succession, depend upon the question, whether 



2. Although Congress had not yet established a permanent law on bankruptcies, Art. I, Sec. 8 
of the U.S. Constitution gave it the authority, 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 109 

shares in Banking, Insurance, Turnpike and other Companies shall be consid- 
ered as real or personal property, it appears to be expedient that the point be 
settled by Laws. Upon this subject I also take the liberty to add, that though no 
particular instance of abuse has come to my knowledge, prudence requires that 
summary and efficient regulations be speedily established for rendering the 
managers and agents of corporations responsible for the faithful execution of 
their trust, and a due observance of the Acts of Incorporations. 

The act authorizing the appointment of a Reporter for the Court of Errors, 
with a salary, will expire, by its own limitation, at the close of the present ses- 
sion. As the uniformity, wisdom, and even purity of judicial decisions are 
essentially promoted, by giving publicity to the principles on which they are 
founded, I recommend a further continuation of that Act. 

The measures of the last session for encouraging the extension of agricul- 
tural knowledge, appear to have produced very beneficial effects, by exciting a 
spirit of emulation and enquiry. I submit to your consideration, whether a mod- 
erate annual appropriation, to be distributed according to some rule to be 
prescribed by law, in aid of such funds as may be raised by private donations, 
would not probably render this spirit still more active and universal. 

The states of North Carolina and Tennessee having proposed amendments 
to the Constitution of the United States, their proceedings will be submitted to 
your consideration. 

It is, in my opinion, deserving the most serious consideration, whether the 
law of partnership, especially in relation to establishments of a permanent 
nature, ought not to be revised and accommodated to the circumstances of our 
age and Country. As this law exists at present, no person can advance money to 
be employed in business, under a contract to receive a proportion of the profits, 
in lieu of interests, without thereby subjecting his whole property to responsi- 
bility. The effect is, that men in advanced age, or retired from business, are 
restrained from employing their capital in acts of benevolence or friendship, or 
in undertakings which would be highly beneficial to the community. It is well 
known that private loans are now rarely to be attained, as with a view to higher 
profits than the legal rate of interest, the accumulations which are constantly 
forming, are employed in speculations in the public funds, or in Banking insti- 
tutions, where the responsibility and hazard can be limited: of course 
subjecting our active citizens, employed in arts, commerce, manufactures, or 
agricultural improvements, to delays and interruptions, for want of aid, or to 
inevitable dependence on pecuniary corporations. On these grounds, I respect- 
fully invite you to consider, whether it is not contrary to public policy, if not an 
abridgement of private right, to restrain individuals from forming partnerships 
with a limited responsibility. As the community are interested in being guarded 



1 10 PUBLIC RECORDS 

against frauds arising from secret combinations, it would be proper to require 
contracts of this nature, to be recorded in a public office, subject to general in- 
spection: the active managers, and generally all those who personally formed 
contracts, might be held responsible as at present, and it would not be inequita- 
ble, if all sums withdrawn from a joint capital stock, should, for a limited 
period, be liable to be recalled, and rendered applicable to the payment of part- 
nership debts. Under these and perhaps some additional regulations, I have no 
doubt that the public security, against acts of insolvency, would be greatly in- 
creased, and a beneficial activity imparted to the resources of the State. 

The discoveries and improvements in the useful arts and sciences, during the 
last fifty years, have essentially changed the condition and relations of civilized 
men throughout the globe. New and forcible obligations are therefore imposed 
on all those who are entrusted with the superintendance of public affairs, to facil- 
itate to their fellow citizens, the advantages of the present enterprizing age. 
During a considerable period, the relative wealth, importance and influence of 
civil communities, may be expected rapidly to improve or to decline. In that 
great intellectual competition which has commenced among Nations, the United 
States are well prepared to take the lead; but it ought to be impressed on the mind 
of every freeman, that it is not in their territorial wealth or political power, but in 
the free constitutions of our Country, that their peculiar advantages consist. 

Wonderful are the means by which a gracious Providence has conducted us 
to our present condition. We can now perceive, why it was necessary that our 
high spirited ancestors should be expelled from their homes by persecution, 
and compelled to suffer extreme toil, poverty, and the restraints incident to 
savage warfare. By no other course of training, could they have acquired that 
hardihood, intelligence, docility and perseverance, which are the basis of the 
American character, by which our Independence was acquired, and by which 
alone public liberty can be preserved. As Connecticut is now one of the oldest, 
and in relation to its local limits, one of the most populous States, the effects of 
our social organization have here been most fully developed. Happily for us, 
our reforms can only confirm principles and habits which experience has rec- 
ommended. Though in relation to the General Government, and for many 
purposes of general police, we are but one State, yet for the most important of 
all purposes that of preserving the character, habits and intelligence of the 
people, we are a congeries of distinct republics. It is essential therefore that our 
present organization should remain; that the people should continue to edu- 
cate, govern and support each other; and constantly perceive that while 
indolence and faction are "destroying Angels," mutual consultations, depend- 
ence and co-operation are sources of stability, security and happiness. 

OLIVER WOLCOTT. 
General Assembly, 
May Session, 1818. 



THE DEBATE ON THE SUFFRAGE ACT, MAY SESSION, 1818 
For the act itself and a discussion of this debate and its context, see above, pp. xvii-xix, 36, 36n. 



[Connecticut Courant, 
June 9, 1818] 

[Monday, June 1, 1818] 

The bill for an act regulating the qual- 
ifications of freemen was read a second 
time. 



Mr. J. W. Edwards thought there was 
an objectionable clause in the bill; the 
only moral qualifications required was 
that the person should be of quiet and 
peaceable behaviour and civil conversa- 
tion; a man might be all that, and still be 
guilty of the crime of forgery. 

Mr. Phelps moved to amend the bill, 
by erasing the words "quiet and peace- 
able behaviour and civil conversation," 
and inserting the words "and sustaining a 
good moral character." Mr. P. said he 
took the other phraseology from the ex- 
isting law, and was not entirely pleased 
with it at the time — he however wished 
to bring the subject before the house, 
without varying the old law except as to 
the subject of military duty, &c. 



[American Mercury, 
June 9, 1818] 

[Monday, June 1, 1818] 

Mr. E. Phelps' Bill defining the qual- 
ifications of freemen, passed to a second 
reading. 

Mr. [Vine or Samuel] Robinson, 
moved to strike out the word four, and 
insert that of twelve; so as to make a resi- 
dence of twelve months requisite before 
admission as a freeman. 

Mr. Robinson, in support of his 
motion, remarked, that in that section of 
the state in which he resided, very great 
numbers of men were constantly arriving 
from an adjoining state, and after a resi- 
dence of four months, having property 
sufficient, became voters before they were 
even known. He said he wanted a longer 
probation for strangers. Motion lost. 



Mr. Phelps moved to amend the bill 
by striking out the words "of quiet and 
peaceable behavior, " and inserting the 
words "sustains a good moral charac- 
ter. " Motion carried. 

This bill, thus amended, became a sub- 
ject of an animated discussion. It provides, 
that beside those qualified to give their suf- 
frages according to the existing law, all 
white male persons of 21 years of age who 
pay taxes, or perform military duty, shall 
be entitled to enjoy the right of suffrage. 



112 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



Mr. Austin said there was the expres- 
sion in the bill "all white male 
inhabitants;" which appeared to him im- 
proper — there were some neither white 
nor black, and if in possession of other 
qualifications he thought it improper to 
exclude them. Nay, he would admit 
blacks to the polls, if they had property 
sufficient and a good moral character. He 
thought the dignity of the state would not 
be at all impaired by such a provision, 
and would make a motion to that effect. 

Mr. Griswold thought that gentlemen 
would find it necessary to vary the de- 
tails of the bill materially before it 
should be passed into a law. If he under- 
stood the subject matter of the bill, it 
rested on these general principles — that 
whoever pays taxes and does military 
duty, is entitled to all the privileges of a 
freeman: and how were we to know who 
pays taxes, and does military duty? How 
much taxes must a man pay, and how 
much military duty must he perform? 
how white must he be? All these ques- 
tions must be settled before you pass the 
bill. But your bill qualifies freemen, who 
are not legal residents. This varies the 
old law. No man can exercise the right of 
suffrage in any town, unless he is a legal 
resident of that town. If, sir, he can vote 
for the public officers of the state, he has 
a right to vote for town officers — and to 
share in the direction of the town busi- 
ness. I am not yet prepared, sir, for 
universal suffrage. This question has en- 
gaged the first talents of the first 
politicians of every age, whether prop- 
erty shall be necessary to entitle a man to 
the right of suffrage, and it has been de- 
cided that it is necessary — and shall it 
now be decided by us not to be neces- 
sary? Is not the property of those who 
possess it, insecure when submitted to 



Mr. Griswold observed, that the sub- 
ject now under consideration, was one of 
primary importance. It is a subject, Sir, 
that has called forth the exertions of the 
greatest minds, and ablest pens. The pro- 
priety of universal suffrage, has been 
doubted in almost every age and country. 
This bill is very indefinite. How white or 
how black must the voter be? How much 
tax must he pay, and how much military 
duty must he perform? Mr. Griswold 
asked, where will be the security of real 
property, when the poor and destitute can 
vote it away at pleasure. He said that 
those who exercise the right of suffrage, 
ought to be independent freemen; and 
not liable to be controuled by the 
wealthy and influential. The right of suf- 
frage is not, as by some it is contended to 
be, a natural right; it is altogether a right 
established by the positive institutions of 
society. If this was a natural right, every 
individual in society might vote. Even 
females would be entitled to this privi- 
lege; and I have not the least doubt. Sir, if 
the bill upon your table becomes a law, 
but that hundreds, and even thousands 
will be admitted to the right of suffrage, 
who are much less qualified to exercise 
this important right than our accom- 
plished females; but the laws of nature 
and of society make them dependent 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



113 



the disposal of those who have none? 
And shall it no longer have weight in the 
decision of this question? Will those who 
have it, be willing to put it out of their 
power to control it? Are they prepared to 
do this, sir? But the great question is con- 
cerning deliberative voters — the right of 
suffrage is not a natural right — it is a 
right conferred — a right which grows out 
of community, and which is governed by 
the laws of a community — it is a right be- 
stowed: were it natural, all ranks and 
ages would enjoy it. Why, let me ask, are 
females excluded from exercising the 
rights of suffrage? Their natural acquire- 
ments are far greater than those of 
thousands, who are to exercise the elec- 
tion from choice under the provision of 
this bill; the reason is, that by the 
common law of nations, and I may say by 
the law of nature they are made depend- 
ent on the other sex, and, if permitted to 
vote, their voice would be raised in 
favour of their own situation. That is the 
most independent system, which em- 
braces the greatest number of 
independent states, and the most depend- 
ent system, embraces the greatest 
number of dependent voters. The state of 
society is varied now, from what it was 
some years ago, and is constantly vary- 
ing. We are now introducing large 
manufactories into the state; in them are 
found large numbers of people who are 
entirely dependent on their masters, for 
their daily bread: and shall the masters of 
manufactories be permitted to bring regi- 
ments up to the polls, who are not worth a 
cent, and who are to have control of the 
property of men of wealth and influence 
in society? Introduce this law, and the 
freedom of Connecticut, will crumble 
into the dust. As to military duty, it is no 
qualification for the elective franchise, 



upon men, and being dependent, they 
ought not to vote; nor had any person 
who is dependent upon another to vote. It 
ought to be remembered, Sir, that manu- 
facturers are rapidly increasing; and 
their employers may bring them in regi- 
ments to the polls. I very much fear Sir, if 
the proposed bill passes, the freedom, 
the independence, and all the best insti- 
tutions of Connecticut will be brought to 
destruction, admit, Sir, that every man 
born in Connecticut "is born free" but 
every man so born, is not a freeman. It is 
the law that makes him so. This bill, Sir, 
in my opinion, opens a door too wide to 
meet with the approbation of sound 
policy. 



114 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



and affords no reason for a man to exer- 
cise it — You might as well make any 
other duty a qualification; agreeable to 
the law of nations every man is bound to 
protect his country. Men who are not 
freemen, enjoying the protection of the 
laws under which they live, and though 
they are not voters, they are bound to 
defend the rights which are guaranteed 
to them by the laws. I am not prepared, 
sir, to adopt a principle which has been 
discarded all over the U. States, except, 
perhaps, in Pennsylvania. To open this 
door for influence and corruption in 
Connecticut, is inconsistent with sound 
policy. 

Mr. Foot would not dispute that prop- 
erty should be taken into consideration 
in passing that bill. He would agree with 
the gentleman, that there was probably 
not a parallel case in the U. States, to the 
one under consideration — perhaps there 
was not an instance; and as to the moral- 
ity required, the question was not now, 
whether the elective franchise should be 
extended to moral persons, but whether 
they could extend to all their rights, 
without descending from their present 
dignity. As to the question why females 
are not admitted to the polls, he would 
answer with deference, and without any 
particular allusion [illusion?], that he 
knew not why they were not entitled to 
the same elective privileges with men. 

Mr. Pendleton said he was in favor of 
the bill; there was no such danger now, as 
was suggested by the gentleman from 
East-Hartford — there was no danger 
now of any man 's bringing regiments to 
the polls; if you pass the bill they will all 
come in of their own accord — and if 
you V mind to make a law that women or 
the feminine sex should come in, I wish, 
Mr. Speaker, such a law might be made. 



Mr. S. A. Foot, briefly remarked that he 
was not about to follow the gentleman 
from East-Hartford [Shubael Griswold] in 
his argument; nor was he about to dispute 
some of the principles advocated by the 
gentleman. But when he reflected upon the 
present situation of Connecticut, he was 
fully convinced that the present manner in 
which the right of suffrage is exercised, he 
really thought it was infinitely worse situ- 
ated than if the most unlimited suffrage 
was allowed to the citizens. They are now 
made freemen by a complete evasion of 
the law; if the bill passes, they will be free- 
men according to law. 



Mr. Pendleton observed that the pres- 
ent mode of making freemen, was vastly 
worse than universal suffrage. A man 
with an estate of $100,000 will make 
every man a freeman within his knowl- 
edge, provided he will consult his wishes 
by his vote. These, Sir, are the dependent 
freemen spoken of by the gentlemen from 
East- Hartford. If he is made a freemen 
[sic], by this law, he will act himself. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



115 



Mr. Channing said the bill involved a 
very important throng [sic], and was en- 
titled to very great deliberation. The 
gentleman from E. Hartford, he believed, 
was incorrect in his allusion to other 
states. In New-Hampshire, if he remem- 
bered right, they had a law which entitled 
every young man of the age of twenty- 
one, to the rights of a freeman. He asks a 
very important question, when he asks if 
all are not born free? If all are not born 
free, does it not involve very important 
consequences? Is it not a fundamental 
principle, that taxation and representa- 
tion are the basis of civil liberty? Many 
of the objections of the gentleman are 
unfounded. He asks how much taxes are 
to be paid, and how much military duty is 
to be done. A large proportion of those 
who ought to be free are prohibited from 
voting: a large portion of those who do 
military duty, have no vote in the choice 
of their rulers. The officers under whom 
they are bound to serve are chosen by 
others. He would acknowledge the sub- 
ject highly important — and could he 
conceive that property would be ren- 
dered more insecure by the provisions of 
the bill, he would take every precaution 
against the evil; but the information of 
the people of this State, was so great, as 
in his view to enable them to discrimi- 
nate between the rights and property of 
every individual, and he had no doubt 
they would be protected. 

Mr. Merwin did not understand the 
gentleman, when he said that all were 
born free, and still contended that they 
were not freemen. It has ever been the 
cry that the poor may oppress the rich, 
but this never has happened and never 
will. If the bill causes an increase of 
voters, where is the difficulty? if a regi- 
ment appears at the polls on one side, it is 



Mr. Channing said it was not correct 
that all governments had restrained the 
right of suffrage. He could refer gentle- 
men to many of the constitutions of the 
states which contain the same principle as 
that embraced in the bill before the house. 
He instanced those of New-Hampshire. 

He then remarked that the principle 
embraced in this bill was the great prin- 
ciple upon which our venerated 
ancestors refuted the greatest revolution 
recorded in history. Taxation and repre- 
sentation, said they, ought to exist in the 
same persons, and in the same people. 
He was in favour of the bill. 



Mr. Merwin, said it was a position to 
him altogether incomprehensible how a 
man could be born free, and yet not be a 
freeman. — Every man in Connecticut, of 
a proper age and of a good character, is a 
freeman — and a freeman who ought to 
have a voice in the election of those who 
govern him, until he forfeits the privilege 
by misconduct. The cry has always been, 



116 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



counter-balanced on the other. It was not 
a regiment with fixed bayonets, and from 
the experience of mankind, he trusted it 
never would be. But it was asked, how 
much taxes must be paid, and how much 
military duty must be done? as much as 
is required by law. It was inconsistent to 
call on men to do military duty, who are 
not fit to choose their own officers, or 
highway serveyors [sic]. For some years 
past, no objections had been made to un- 
worthy freemen, and no one had been 
prevented from voting, whatever might 
have been his character. True, the people 
had been borne on by party excess, but 
there was no danger now in trying the ex- 
periment, and if it did not succeed, there 
would be time enough to alter the law 
hereafter. 



Mr. Griswold said the gentleman did 
not understand him; he stated that all 
were born free, but all were not born 
freemen of the State of Connecticut. A 
man may be a freeman of the State and 
not a freeman of the town of Hartford. 
He was aware that the law on this subject 
had been corrupted, but that could form 
no excuse for making a worse law; if 
gentlemen would make a law to restore 
the ancient purity of the elective fran- 
chise, they would do important service to 
posterity. — Postponed to a third reading. 



that by extending the right of suffrage, 
the poor will controul the rich — that they 
will come in regiments to the polls to 
vote, — Sir, if they come regiments to the 
polls to vote; they go in regiments to 
fight the enemies of their beloved coun- 
try. It has been asked how much military 
duty must they perform to entitle them to 
vote? The law settles this question. It is, 
Mr. Speaker, inconsistent with the plain- 
est dictates of justice, to impose heavy 
burdens upon a class of people, and at the 
same time, to deprive them of the exer- 
cise of the important right of suffrage. If, 
Sir, the bill upon your table when it be- 
comes a law, if found to produce bad 
effects, repeal it; but let us no longer de- 
prive a large portion of our fellow- 
citizens of a right which they ought to ex- 
ercise as well as ourselves. 

Mr. Austin said the old modes I find 
are all to be changed. The more we have 
departed from the path of our ancestors, 
the worse we have grown. I should like to 
see the legislature retrace their steps and 
get back to the good old way; but I do not 
know as it can be done; and, on the whole, 
I do not know but the bill may as well pass 
into a law. We are Mr. Speaker, where we 
are, and I do not know as we can help it. 

Mr. Griswold made a few remarks in 
explanation of those previously made by 
him, and the bill was postponed. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



117 



[Connecticut Courant, 
June 9, 1818] 

[Tuesday, June 2, 1818] 

REFORM. 

The bill for a public act regulating the 
qualifications of freemen, was again 
taken up. 

Mr. J. W. Edwards remarked that 
there appeared to be something very in- 
definite in the bill, and he thought it 
would not do to pass it without some 
qualification. In regard to paying taxes, 
the bill said nothing about how lately a 
man must have paid taxes, or how lately 
he must have done military duty; and for 
aught he could see, if he had once paid a 
tax, and done military duty, he was 
always entitled to the privileges of a free- 
man. He wished to have the bill so 
amended as to require these qualifica- 
tions at the time of voting. It was 
certainly improper if a man had once 
done military duty, or once paid a tax, 
that he should always be entitled to the 
constitutional privileges of a freeman. A 
man 1 8 years of age may have done mili- 
tary duty, or he might have done military 
duty 20 years ago, and not have done it 
since that time. He could see no reason, 
admitting these to be proper qualifica- 
tions, for extending the privilege to those 
who might have possessed them but once 
in their life. He wished some alteration 
might be made which should define this 
question so as to render it intelligible. He 
merely suggested these ideas that the pro- 
visions of the bill might be better defined. 

Messrs. J. W. Edwards, Phelps, Foot, 
Griswold, Stevens and Channing, made 
further remarks on the subject, which we 
are compelled to omit. — Question on the 
bill passed. 



[American Mercury, 
June 16, 1818] 

[Tuesday, June 2, 1818] 

Bill for a Public Act, defining the 
qualifications of Freemen, was resumed. 
The discussion was continued for some 
length of time — the arguments shew a 
settled diversity of opinion, and elicited 
many facts applicable to the subject. 

Mr. J. W. Edwards, declared if the es- 
tablished principles upon which the right 
of suffrage was established, was [sic] to 
be departed from he thought the bill 
under discussion a most defective mode 
of doing it. The bill, said he, is altogether 
indefinite in its provisions. It does not 
define the military duty to be performed, 
nor does it designate the amount of taxes 
to be paid — better is it to have no law at 
all upon the subject, than one so ex- 
tremely defective. Sir, by that bill a 
minor of eighteen years has a right to 
vote, for the law compels him to perform 
military duty. Again, Sir, one principle 
has been recognized in this State — once 
a freeman, always a freeman. Is it to be 
so under the operation of this law? Has a 
man who pays a pittance of a tax, and 
performs a day's military duty forever 
after to exercise the important right of 
suffrage? 

Mr. E. Phelps said, from the discus- 
sion of this subject he perceived that 
gentleman had two objections to the 
bill — one to the principle, the other to 
the details of it. As to the arguments used 
against the principle of the bill, he felt 
ready and he thought able to meet them. 
Sir, said Mr. Phelps, it was the language 
of our ancestors, to what was once 
called, and which many choose now to 
call our mother country, that taxation and 
representation should go hand in hand. It 



118 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



was one of the great principles upon 
which our glorious revolution was con- 
summated. I ask, sir, how our citizens 
can be represented in our government 
unless they exercise the privilege, under 
proper limitations, of choosing those 
who govern them? He could see no other 
way. Again, Sir, shall our yeomanry be 
compelled with their arms, their labour, 
and their fortunes, to defend our liber- 
ties, and yet be deprived of one of the 
most important rights of freemen? To 
him, the doctrine seemed too untenable 
to sustain its advocates for a moment. — 
It is not with us, Sir, as with a monarchy. 
There the few, govern the many. In our 
Republic, thank Heaven, the People have 
a right to govern themselves, by their 
own representatives. Is the possession of 
wealth the only criterion of power. Sir, 
our intelligent farmers and mechanics, 
although many of them are in humble 
circumstances, are nevertheless as capa- 
ble of judging of the qualifications of 
legislators, as those whose splend[i]d eq- 
uipage and sumptuous levees, attract the 
notice of the world. 

As to the details of the bill. Sir. in 
drafting it. I followed the very expres- 
sions adopted in many of the 
constitutions, and some of the laws now 
in force. But, Sir, I am not tenacious of 
the mode by which my fellow citizens 
shall be admitted to the exercise of the 
right of suffrage. I will cheerfully acqui- 
esce in any salutary amendment of the 
bill, so be it it does not destroy the princi- 
ple of it. For this principle I have always 
been an advocate, and am rejoiced to see 
a disposition prevailing to grant to those 
who have to bear a full portion of the 
burthens of government, a participation 
in the power of it. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



119 



Mr. S. A. Foot remarked, that he was 
astonished to hear gentlemen declare 
that the bill under discussion extended 
the right of suffrage; it certainly limited 
it; as the law now stands, any man with- 
out any of the requisites in this bill who 
can procure some friend to give him a 
deed of land worth seven dollars annu- 
ally, can although he paid no 
consideration for it, vote as a freeman. 

Almost every gentleman who had 
previously offered themselves to the 
house, took the floor a second, and some, 
by leave of the house a third time. 

Mr. Channing called the attention of 
the House to the constitutional provi- 
sions of the various confederated states 
in the United States, and declared that as 
ten of these constitutions contained the 
very identical provision contained in the 
bill under discussion, he, very greatly 
marveled that there should be such an 
irreconcileable diversity of opinion upon 
a subject where unanimity of sentiment 
was so sincerely to be hoped and expected. 
Sir, said Mr. Channing, this bill is plain, 
simple, idefinite [sic], easy to be under- 
stood. He concluded by expressing his 
ardent wishes that the people of Connecti- 
cut might, upon this great subject, lay 
aside their political hostility, and cordially 
unite on a subject of the highest interest to 
the State. As to the bill, I hope it will pass. 

After a slight amendment moved by 
Mr. E. Phelps, the bill passed into a law, 
by a large majority. 



THE DEBATE ON THE CALLING OF THE 
CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION, 
MAY SESSION, 1818 



For this debate, its context, and the resolutions as finally adopted, see above, pp. 
xix-xxi, 42-43, 43n. The starting point for the debate was the following resolution, 
proposed by the legislative committee chaired by Orange Merwin (Archives, Civil Of- 
ficers, Ser. 2, XVIII, 1): 

Resolved by this Assembly, That it be and it is hereby recommended to the 
people of this State who are now legal voters in town-meetings be & they are 
hereby directed to assemble, in their respective towns, on the [blank] day of 
[blank] next, at 9 o'clock in the morning, then & there to elect as many dele- 
gates as sd. towns now choose representatives to the General Assembly, to 
meet in Convention at the State House in [blank] on the [blank] day of [blank] 
next, for the purpose of forming a Constitution of Civil Government for the 
people of this State, & to submit the same to the several towns aforesaid for 
their approbation & ratification, which Convention Constitution when so rati- 
fied by [blank] of the whole number of sd. towns in legal meetings warned for 
the purpose, shall go into operation according to the provisions contained 
therein & shall be & remain the Constitution & Supreme Law of this State. 

Regarding specific matters found in the debates, in his speech on June 1, George 
Hubbard mentioned statements made by James Davenport and Jeremiah Wadsworth in 
1786 about the state's lack of a constitution of its own choice; for Davenport, see 
Trumbull, Constitutions of Connecticut, p. 14. "Libanus," also mentioned by Hubbard, 
was possibly a pseudonymous writer at that time. On the same date, Daniel Burrows 
might have been referring either to the English Toleration Act of 1689, passed under 
William and Mary, or to the action of Queen Anne in 1705, when she annulled a Con- 
necticut statute persecuting Quakers on the advice of the Privy Council. Van Dusen, 
Connecticut, p. 117. 

The House Journal (June 4, 1 8 1 8) confirms the 1 28-52 vote recorded by the Times below. 



121 



DEBATE ON THE 
CONSTITUTIONAL CONVENTION 



[Connecticut Courant, 
June 9, 18181 

[Monday, June 1, 1818] 

REFORM. 
Bill for a resolve, relating to a new 
constitution of civil government, was 
again read. 



Mr. Foot, moved to amend the bill by 
erasing after the word elect, the words 
"as many delegates as representatives" 
and inserting the words "one dele- 
gate["] — Mr. F. said the object of the 
amendment was to reduce the number of 
delegates — he could see no reason for so 
large a body to form an instrument, it 
would be recollected that, that body 
would not act upon the question, but it 
would return to the several towns and be 
acted upon by them — he could not see 
therefore, why the same number of dele- 
gates, as there were towns in the state 
would not answer all the purpose — in ap- 
proving and accepting the instrument for 
our constitution of civil government, 
each town would be entitled to one vote, 
and there could be no reason for a greater 



[American Mercury, 
June 9, 1818] 

[Monday, June 1, 1818] 

A Resolve, designating the manner in 
which the people shall proceed in deter- 
mining the question whether a 
Constitution of civil government shall be 
framed for the state of Connecticut, and 
if so, in what manner it shall be formed 
was called up. 

The Committee to whom this impor- 
tant question was referred offered by Mr. 
Plant, a luminous and elegant report 
upon this subject, which it is hoped will 
hereafter be published. The Report was 
laid upon the table; and the Resolve ac- 
companying the same, became a subject 
of animated discussion. 

Mr. S. A. Foot moved an amendment, 
so as to make the delegates to the con- 
vention to consist of but one from a 
town. This motion was opposed and lost. 



122 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



number in the convention, than would 
act on the instrument. 

Mr. Merwin, said he had made up his 
mind on the first number, if however the 
gentlemen were disposed to alter it, he 
did not know that he should have any 
very particular objection — still he was of 
opinion, that the more equal the delega- 
tion the better, and he knew of no way to 
make it so equal as on the plan of the rep- 
resentation to the general assembly. 

Mr. Channing said if any thing was 
done on the subject, he would have as 
much equality in the representation as 
possible and he wished the former fea- 
tures of the bill might be preserved. 

Mr. Austin, said he was not accus- 
tomed to constitution making — but he 
thought the first question to be asked by 
the house, was, whether the instrument 
was to be adopted by the delegates — if 
so, it was necessary to have as full a rep- 
resentation as possible — we have 
probably twenty towns restricted to only 
one representative, and shall they be set 
off against the towns of New-Haven and 
Hartford? this is great business, sir — 
making a new Constitution is great busi- 
ness — and requires men of the first 
talents to be engaged in it; in those very 
towns may be found men of the first abil- 
ities, but they are not to be looked for in 
many of the back towns — he thought the 
amendment would operate unequally. — 
Amenmednt [sic] rejected. 

Mr. J. Foote said it was a subject of 
great importance, and he would move a 
postponement of the further consider- 
ation of the bill, till they had heard the 
report of the committee. 

It was remarked by another gentle- 
man, that the resolution was an 
important one; and that so far as the reso- 
lutions of the several towns were 



1818 



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123 



concerned, they went to convince him 
that there was no necessity of doing any 
thing on the subject; the whole number 
of resolutions did not exceed 35 or 40 
and these were not made out by a major- 
ity of the freemen. There were few 
freemen together when they were 
passed, and if a majority of the freemen 
staid at home when this subject came up, 
it clearly showed, that they were content 
to live under their present form of gov- 
ernment. Besides, this was not a proper 
time for a consideration of the subject; it 
would create no little excitement; and he 
would wish to postpone it — it would come 
on in a hurrying hour for town meetings, 
and he wished the further consideration of 
the subject to lie over to the next session; 
that would afford time for the freemen to 
make up their minds better, and the influ- 
ence would be a happy one. 

Mr. Plant, said it was the expression 
of the public will that we have a new con- 
stitution of civil government; this 
appeared to be the prevailing sentiment 
throughout the state — he formed this 
opinion from information derived from 
different sources — the public mind was 
in favour of it, and it was not understood 
by the committee as the gentleman has 
stated from this floor. 



Mr. Griswold said he disagreed from 
the gentleman from Stratford [David 
Plant], and he would state some reasons 
for it. In the first place Sir, I am con- 
vinced that it is inexpedient to do any 
thing at all on this subject; our present 
form of government is as well 



The debate upon the resolution was 
opened by 

Mr. Plant. He observed that the Com- 
mittee to whom this momentous subject 
was referred had given to it the most 
mature deliberation which the short time 
allowed them afforded. He said they as- 
siduously sought for the best evidence of 
the public opinion upon the question. 
Before us, said Mr. Plant, were spread 
resolutions from numerous towns, ex- 
pressed in the most decisive terms. 
Although all the towns in the state have 
not passed resolutions, yet said Mr. Plant, 
I presume there is not a member upon the 
floor of this House, but knows the prevail- 
ing sentiment of the people he represents 
to be in favour of this great measure. 

Mr. Griswold said he was one of the 
committee to whom that part of his Ex- 
cellency's speech, relating to Civil 
Government, was referred. He said he 
had not signed the report now upon the 
table; and could not approve of the re- 
solve accompanying the same, now 



24 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



understood and is as good as any form of 
civil government can be — it has been ex- 
tolled at home and abroad for its 
simplicity and its purely republican prin- 
ciples — It is one of the most ancient 
republics in the world, and under which 
the people of Connecticut, have enjoyed 
as much liberty, and as much happiness 
as was ever enjoyed under any govern- 
ment in the history of republics — and if I 
may so express myself, shall we now 
throw this government off its hinges? 
The bill on your table Sir, is not in my 
view, dictated by the voice of the 
people — the meetings which made out 
these resolutions were thinly attended; 
some of them were held without notice, 
& some of them were adjourned town 
meetings, & does not this show indiffer- 
ence on this subject ? some indeed there 
are who wish for a change, and there are 
malcontents in every community who 
wish for a change and are always ready 
for a change under any circumstances. 
But, sir, this is an improper time for the 
consideration of a subject of this nature; 
this subject should never be discussed, 
while the public mind is as much agi- 
tated as at present; I do not agree with the 
expression in that report, nor with the 
declarations made by the gentleman on 
this floor on the subject of party feeling 
having subsided — the feelings of party 
were never more alive in this state, than 
at the present moment; and a subject of 
this magnitude requires all the delibera- 
tion imaginable. There is in fact a great 
deal of misinformation upon it, and give 
me leave to say, that if well informed, not 
one in ten of the freemen would give his 
vote to change our form of civil govern- 
ment — as an example to illustrate the 
truth of the remark, I would move that 
the resolution from North Stonnington 



before the house. The government of 
Connecticut, said Mr. Griswold, is the 
oldest government upon earth. In its op- 
eration, Sir, it has produced happiness at 
home and admiration abroad. If we 
depart from it, we shall unhinge our 
whole system. I very much doubt 
whether the public opinion at the present 
time demands the formation of a new 
Constitution. It is not, as have been con- 
tended, a time of tranquility; the state 
was never more agitated than at this 
moment. He said he did not believe, if 
the candid wishes of intelligent men 
were known upon this subject, that one 
in an hundred would express a wish in 
favour of the measure proposed. I have, 
to be sure, said he, read many resolutions 
upon this subject. He would wish that the 
resolution from the town of North- 
Stonington might be read, to show how 
ignorant many are upon this subject. It 
was read by the Clerk. Mr. Griswold 
added, I believe the meetings assembled 
to act upon this subject were very thinly 
attended and furnish but slight evidence 
of public opinion. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



125 



be read — it will show the intelligence 
and that kind of spirit which exists on 
this subject. 

The following is the resolution al- 
luded to, and was the sole production of 
Col. Nathan Pendleton, now a member 
of the house. [Newspaper prints text of 
North Stonington resolution.] 

Mr. Plant, said he was altogether at 
issue with the gentleman from East-Hart- 
ford [Shubael Griswold], and the subject 
for our not having the voice of the people. 

Mr. Griswold, remarked that his in- 
formation was received from various 
parts of the state; he was informed by a 
gentleman from New-Haven, that the 
resolution from that town was passed by 
a very small number of the freemen; the 
same was the fact in Hartford, and in var- 
ious other towns which might be named. 



Mr. Plant said he was at issue with the 
gentleman from East Hartford, in rela- 
tion to the last fact by him stated. He 
said, so far as his knowledge extended, 
the meetings were numerously attended, 
and the resolutions were almost unani- 
mously adopted. 



Mr. J. Foot said the subject before the 
house, brought us upon untrodden 
ground. The report of the committee is 
no evidence of what the public opinion is 
upon this subject. He said it was no time 
to make a constitution when the people 
were so agitated. 

Mr. Austin said, our constitution was 
given to us by majesty Charles II. It was 
received by the legislature as such — as 
such, has been repeatedly recognized by 
the people, and they have sworn to sup- 
port it. I know Mr. Speaker, that this is 
not the whole of our excellent constitu- 
tion. It is partly written and partly 
unwritten. Go to England, said Mr. 
Austin, their Constitution is somewhat 
unwritten, and it is esteemed the best in 
Europe; and I really think, Mr. Speaker, 
ours is the best in this country. We have 
long lived happily under it, and I am 
afraid, when we depart from it, we shall 
get into anarchy and confusion. — He 
said he heard Judge [Pierpont?] Edwards 



26 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



Mr. Foot, said if he could believe for a 
moment that a majority of the people did 
not wish a compact of civil government, 
he would not say a word in its favour. 
The gentleman from East-Hartford, says 
that we have no instruction from the 
people, or that we have not the voice of a 
majority of the towns — has not every 
member, let me ask, written or verbal in- 
structions on this subject? is there a 
member who has not had it enjoined 
upon him by his constituents to do some- 
thing in improving our form of civil 
government? but it is said that a consid- 
erable part of the freemen did not attend 
the meeting when the question of a new 
Constitution came up, and what then? 
What objection is this to acting upon the 
subject? The meetings were warned and 
publicly notified in the news papers, and 
if they were indifferent to forming a new 
constitution they ought not to be heard 
on this subject. The house was prepared 
to decide the question, and he would 
cheerfully submit it to their views and 
feelings. 



declare that although our constitution 
was not written, it was the best on earth. I 
am an old man, Mr. Speaker, and have 
always lived happily under the govern- 
ment of Connecticut. I am afraid if we 
make a new constitution, we shall depart 
from the genuine republican principle. I 
long to see party spirit broken down — I 
long to see the people love each other as 
brethren. I think there is no necessity of 
forming a new constitution; but if one is 
to be made, I really hope it will be a good 
one, and I hope to be a good citizen 
under it. 

Mr. S. A. Foot said he had not the 
least doubt remaining upon his mind but 
that the voice of the people demanded, 
and loudly demanded the formation of a 
Constitution. He respected this voice the 
more, as he knew it to be spontaneous, 
the gentleman from E. Hartford has de- 
clared that thinking men were opposed 
to this measure. I have talked with think- 
ing men upon this subject; and I have 
read many papers conducted by thinking 
men, both of which declare that the mea- 
sure is expedient, and I cannot ever 
consent to resist the voice of the people. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



127 






Mr. H. W. Edwards said he arose to 
correct a statement of the gentleman 
from East-Hartford, relative to the town 
meeting in New-Haven: that meeting 
was legally warned, notification was 
given of it long before in the public news 
papers, all understood the subject en- 
tirely, and had they been disposed they 
might have attended. It was well under- 
stood, that many were in favour of it who 
did not attend — they felt a confidence 
that the business would succeed without 
them: — how then can the gentleman say 
this meeting was not legally called, he 
knew not what right he had to say it. 

Mr. Griswold said, he did not say that 
the meetings were not legal, but that they 
were thinly attended, he had remarked 
that many of both parties felt assured that 
the legislature would not call a conven- 
tion at this time. — With the sober and 
judicious part of the community there is 
no uneasiness on the subject of a consti- 
tution; the legislature of Connecticut has 
never felt a disposition to tyrannize, and 
the frequency of election is an effectual 
bar against encroachments of this 
nature — with our present frequency of 
election it is impossible that any legisla- 
ture should every tyran[n]ize over the 
people. All the government is now com- 
pletely in the hands of the people; they 
form their own legislature once in six 
months, and if one body makes laws 
which they do not like, they can form an- 
other to repeal them. Not so, sir, when 
you detail your form of civil government 
on paper — the moment you begin to 
detail, that moment you will take away 
some of the rights of the people; the 
people are to be injured in this case. 
Now, if their representatives make laws 
tyrannical, they can discontinue them; 
not so with your constitution in detail, 



Mr. H. W. Edwards, said that in 
regard to what has been declared upon 
the floor of the house concerning the 
meetings of citizens, he certainly knew it 
was incorrect in regard to New-Haven. 
He said that was a regularly warned 
meeting; and in addition to the usual 
warning, public notice was given in the 
Newspapers published in the town. Mr. 
Edwards said you may, Mr. Speaker, as 
well question the election of representa- 
tives of the town of New-Haven, as to 
doubt the legitimate manner in which the 
resolutions of the freemen of that town 
were passed. The meeting was as numer- 
ously attended as the town meetings 
generally are, and the resolutions, in pos- 
session of this house, were passed with 
unusual unaminity. 



28 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



and for this reason, sir, I am opposed to 
having a convention called in the present 
state of party feeling. Suppose a majority 
of the convention agree to form a consti- 
tution, and the majority of the people do 
not agree to accept it! The effects of such 
failure, on this community, would be 
such as we should not like to experi- 
ence — the agitation which it would 
excite, would not be assuaged for years. 
If we direct the towns to form a constitu- 
tion, I should deem it our duty to have a 
good one; and when the constitution is 
once formed, to adhere to its principles. 
Mr. Hubbard made a speech in which 
he told what Libanus, James Davenport 
and the late Col. Wadsworth said & af- 
firmed, that we have no constitution but 
the charter of Charles and an old obso- 
lete agreement of three towns in the 
state — but we could not hear sufficient 
of his speech to sketch it, as he sat nearly 
under the gallery. 



Mr. G. Hubbard remarked, that as the 
reign of terror was ended in Connecticut, 
the people had a right to express their 
opinions upon this deeply interresting 
subject. It is an axiom, said he, in which 
the most eminent writers upon the law of 
nations are in unison, that the people 
have a right to form for themselves, a 
constitution of civil government. It is 
from the exercise of this right, that the 
monarch is entitled to sit upon his 
throne, and the Chief Magistrate of a Re- 
public is authorised to exercise 
authority. Mr. Speaker, have the people 
of Connecticut ever exercised the right 
they possess to establish a Constitution? 
Every man who hears me, and every man 
in Connecticut will say — No! When 
asked to show the constitution of the sov- 
ereign and independent state of 
Connecticut, we are compelled to point 
to the Royal Charter of Charles II, and to 
the antient compact between the two an- 
cient colonies of Connecticut. These are 
esteemed as sacred as was formerly, the 
declaration of an oracle from Adelphi. 
Sir, said Mr. Hubbard in 1786 it was de- 
clared by two eminent statesman of that 
period, that Connecticut was wholly 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



129 



Mr. J. W. Edwards said, I do not rise, 
Mr. Speaker, at this late hour, under the 
expectation that any observations which 
I may make, will change the vote of a 
single member of this house; but as I 
deem it my duty to give my vote on this 
bill, I shall not hesitate to avow the rea- 
sons by which I am influenced. We are 
blessed with a constitution, sir, and if it is 
not a written one, it is one under which 
the citizens of Connecticut have enjoyed 
more peace, more happiness, and more 
freedom, than could ever be boasted of 
by any other people under any other gov- 
ernment. Our form of civil government 
has remained from 1662, almost without 
a change. It was in its first outlines 
formed by all the free male inhabitants of 
the three towns of Windsor, Hartford, 
and Wethersfield. Afterwards the charter 
of Charles was drawn in this town, made 
as we wished, and sent to England for 
ratification. It rendered us independent, 
and accordingly we were governed 
solely by laws made by ourselves. The 
royal and proprietary governments, were 
dissolved by the revolution — but ours, a 



destitute of a constitution of civil gov- 
ernment of their own choice, — JAMES 
Davenport, and Jeremiah 
Wadsworth. If the Charter of Charles 
was our form of government when we 
were dependent colonies, must it con- 
tinue to be so when we have become an 
independent state? Suppose the legisla- 
ture once enacted that this should be the 
form of civil government for Connecti- 
cut? Cannot the same power repeal their 
own act, and say it is no longer so? I 
hope, Sir, that this legislature who pos- 
sess no power to form a constitution, will 
take measures, this session, to call upon 
the people to form one for themselves, 
by a convention elected for that purpose. 
Mr. J. W. Edwards. Mr. Speaker. I 
have no idea that the sentiments I may 
advance upon this subject will have any 
influence upon the decision of this mo- 
mentous question. What I say, will be 
said, in what I deem, a discharge of 
duty. — I have always thought, Sir, since I 
were capable of thinking, that the consti- 
tution, or form of government — call it as 
you will — in Connecticut, was the most 
free, and the best calculated of any 
within my knowledge, to advance the 
happiness and promote the interest of the 
people. It has uniformly produced these 
effects. And why, Sir, should we change 
it ? In two instances, Mr. Speaker, I think 
it expedient for a people to form a consti- 
tution. 1st, when they are emerging from 
servitude to freedom, and 2d — when a 
number of distinct governments form a 
confederacy. — But Sir, the people of 
Connecticut were always free, and as it 
is one of the confederated States of the 
American Republic, a constitution is al- 
ready formed by the people of the United 
States which protect its rights. As a dis- 
tinct state, Sir, we have our rights under 



130 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



charter government remained unaltered. 
The first charter was drawn up. perhaps 
about the spot where I now stand. It was 
drawn up, sir, at the request of the 
people — it was not a charter of King 
Charles, but a charter of the people, and 
under it we have always exercised all the 
powers of government, and have enjoyed 
as much freedom as has fallen to the lot 
of any other community. The assent of 
the people, by long usage and acquies- 
cence, has been as fully expressed, as if 
the votes of the people had been taken, 
and the assent is less equivocally ex- 
pressed, than even by a vote. What 
advantage, then, shall we gain, sir, by a 
written constitution? A written constitu- 
tion appears to me of no value, except in 
two cases. First, where a people have 
been holden in servitude, and have ob- 
tained their freedom from their 
sovereigns. All the people of Europe 
have emerged from a state of vassal- 
age — they were once the dependents of 
their military chieftains, and the privi- 
leges which they now enjoy, were 
extorted by degrees from their lords, and 
holden by charter. To such a people a 
written constitution is highly important. 
The other case in which it is proper to 
have a written constitution, is where sev- 
eral sovereign states are united under 
one general and federal government. It is 
indispensably necessary to have the 
limits of the general and of the particular 
governments, accurately defined by a 
written constitution. The state of Con- 
necticut is not composed of inferior 
sovereignties: as a state, it is one and in- 
divisible; neither do the people hold their 
liberties from the grant or licence of any 
lord or sovereign: they are of themselves 
free, sovereign, and independent: they 
can never be more free; they cannot even 



that constitution. As an independent 
state, excepting the obligations enjoined 
by that constitution, we have a right to 
make every necessary municipal regula- 
tion for our own government. We have 
always exercised this privilege. It is said. 
Sir, that the charter of Charles II, which 
is called our constitution was made for 
us. Sir, our ancestors made it for them- 
selves upon the very spot where we are 
now in session; and it was merely ratified 
by the crown of Great Britain to which 
we then owed allegiance. When the revo- 
lution was consummated, it altered not 
our rights as a state. As I said before, we 
have always been free. The American 
colonies. Sir, consisted of three distinct 
kinds — Royal — Proprietary: and Char- 
tered. — Ours was of the latter character, 
and the freest of all. How can we be more 
free than we have always been? As a citi- 
zen of Connecticut I am bound to submit 
to the majority. If that majority suppose 
it can ameliorate the condition of the 
people and render them more happy, 
more prosperous, and more respected 
than they now are, I certainly hope they 
may accomplish their wishes; but I think 
they will not do it by changing the oldest, 
and what I sincerely think the best gov- 
ernment on earth. 






1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



131 



form a constitution, without relinquish- 
ing some part of their freedom — the 
freedom at least of changing their laws, 
whenever they are dissatisfied with their 
operation. They now choose one branch 
of their legislature half yearly, and the 
other annually: so that no law will proba- 
bly continue in force, more than six 
months, and certainly, it cannot more 
than one year, before it will be abolished, 
if the people wish it. The people, there- 
fore, do not ask for a constitution, and 
those who are now in power, may be sat- 
isfied with uncontrouled dominion. 
They surely cannot wish to part with the 
power of making wholesome laws and 
regulations, and they will not admit that 
the people are in any danger from their 
usurpations. I think, sir, we have nothing 
to gain and have much to hazard, from an 
innovation. If, however, we must have a 
constitution, I would postpone it till the 
next session of the legislature, and if we 
must then form a constitution, we ought 
all to join and make it as perfect as 
possible. 

Mr. Burrows said he was in favour of 
the bill, from the arguments he had heard 
this afternoon. We have had a bill before 
the house to have property constitute a 
man a freeman; and the principle has 
been adopted, that the more simple the 
construction of a machine the more valu- 
able it is — Why? because we can 
understand it better, and if we under- 
stand it we can use it. But, it is said we 
have a constitution which we have lived 
under for a century; if so it is out of sight, 
or consists partly in writing, and partly in 
usage. It is like the common law, made 
up of customs and usages — the common 
people don't understand them. I think the 
remarks of the gentleman from N. Haven 
[Henry W. Edwards] very appropriate; if 



Mr. Burrows — in a speech of consid- 
erable length, advocated the calling of a 
convention to form a constitution of civil 
government. Let us said he, form a con- 
stitution for to let the people know what 
it is. I am told by gentlemen that we have 
a constitution, consisting partly of the 
charter of Charles II, and partly of 
usages and customs. It is impossible for 
me, for to tell what it is in the main. I 
would have a constitution Mr. Speaker 
for to tell the people what the constitu- 
tion is. — The reason I would have a 
constitution is, for to make the constitu- 
tion as simple as possible. The more 
simple a piece of machinery is, Sir, the 
more easy it is for the beholder to under- 
stand the nature of it, Sir. This 



32 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



the freemen did not attend for to pass a 
resolution, it was their own fault, they 
could act if they would. This and a great 
many other things proves that all is not 
well; the people do not understand — 
they dont see the oppression, and it is 
said to be out of the power of men in 
office to oppress the people. These gen- 
tlemen are always so fortunate as to be in 
power, and the present state of things has 
an unfavorable bearing on the minority. 
People of certain orders of christians 
think it an important question, that their 
rights may be defined, and they have a 
right to enjoy all the privileges and laws 
granted them by a certain Queen. I be- 
lieve the legislature have the power to 
oppress the people: the poor have rights: 
they endure hardships in defence of their 
country, and have they accumulated a 
fortune or spent it in the public service[?] 
This is a subject of great magnitude for 
to be considered, and the trouble will be 
no[t] great to choose delegates, to peace- 
ably deliberate and designate, and I 
would not begrudge the time nor the ex- 
pense if they can accomplish the object. I 
wish to have the constitution defined and 
understood: it can't now be understood. If 
we have a charter we can't tell where it is. 
{We were compelled here to leave the 
gallery: and did not hear the remainder 
of the debate.} 



constitution ought to be made for to 
secure the rights of the people — for to 
define the right of suffrage — for to limit 
the power of the legislature — for to 
define and secure the rights of con- 
science. Without a constitution. Sir, it is 
easy for the legislature for to oppress the 
poor people. I hope Sir, the bill upon 
your table will pass for to enable the 
people for to form a constitution of civil 
government for themselves. 

At this stage of the debate a motion 
was made to adjourn, and was lost. 



Mr. Stevens, Mr. Speaker. This dis- 
cussion has taken a very wide range. It 
seems to me. Sir. that it is a very simple 
question that is before us. We are told. 
Sir, that the people of Connecticut have 
lived a hundred and sixty years, or about 
that time, very happily. Admit they have; 
this is more owing to the virtue of the 
people than to the form of the govern- 
ment. Our ancestors. Sir. resisted the 
stamp act. and the tea act, because they 



181 



OF CONNECTICUT 



133 



were laid by England unconstitutionally. 
We endured a war of seven years — lost 
many lives and expended much treasure 
to secure the right of self government, 
and all this was for nought, unless we 
form a constitution for ourselves. With- 
out this, the powers of government are 
undefined and without limitation. We do 
not know, what belongs to the legisla- 
tive, the executive and the judiciary 1 
branches of the government. Limits are 
invariably prescribed for an agent in 
transacting the most ordinary business of 
life. And shall we, Sir, permit that body 
of men in whose hands are our lives our 
fortunes and our dearest rights to exer- 
cise power without any restrictions? Let 
the constitution be known to the people, 
and they will mark that man who violates 
its provisions. I would have this all im- 
portant instrument in black and white. I 
would no longer have the supreme power 
of state an undefined power — I would 
not have it exist only [on] the varying 
gales of usages and customs. I think, Sir, 
the present time a propitious period to 
make this important instrument, and sin- 
cerely hope to see this assembly 
unanimous in the measure. 

After Mr. Stevens closed his remarks, 
a very contracted sketch of which is 
given, a member enquired of Mr. H. W. 
Edwards what had become of the resolu- 
tions adopted in some towns in the 
western section of this State. 

Mr. Edwards informed the House that 
resolutions or rather a resolution was 
handed him containing a very great 
number of subscribers, with a request 
that he might present them to the legisla- 
ture. He said he observed the signatures 
were all on [sic] the same hand writing; 
and he did not feel authorized to intro- 
duce them into the Assembly. He said he 



134 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



was informed that a number of copies 
had been distributed among the people, 
and that by the circulation of them they 
had become so defaced that it was 
deemed indecorous to present them to 
the legislature, and they were all trans- 
ferred upon one general petition, and 
submitted the question to the house, 
whether it should be admitted. Some 
members expressed a doubt whether it 
would be proper, and the petition was not 
offered. 

Mr. McClellen arose and addressed 
the Speaker as follows. I am opposed, 
Sir, to the resolution upon your table. 
This is a very busy season, and the 
people had rather cultivate their farms 
than make constitutions. I had rather, Sir, 
have the subject put off to October ses- 
sion. I really think, Mr. Speaker, there 
will be no great danger of our liberties 
till that time. The constitution of the 
United States guarantees to us a republi- 
can form of government, and we must 
have it whether we will it or not. He said 
it had got to be so much in the fashion for 
people to talk upon this subject, that he 
supposed there must be something in it. 
But, said Mr. McClellen, go to Greece — 
to Rome — go any where, Sir, and you 
will not find a better constitution than 
you find in Connecticut. I do not care a 
fig what it is made of; but it is really, Mr. 
Speaker, a most excellent constitution. 
But I suppose, Sir, we must do some- 
thing upon this subject, or the people 
won't like it. I would do almost any thing 
to satisfy the very good people of Con- 
necticut, if they can be satisfied; but 
cannot see the reason of running mad 
about this affair. We have lived about a 
hundred and fifty years under our old 
form of government without any kind of 
difficulty, and he thought we might stand 



18 



OF CONNECTICUT 



135 



it at least till next fall without any kind of 
danger. 

Mr. Austin said he could not, for his 
part tell, what we were coming to. If we 
make a new constitution, Sir, what be- 
comes of the good old compact between 
the antient Connecticut, and New-Haven 
colonies? Where will the legislature sit 
in future, Mr. Speaker? I suppose it must 
set in the centre of the state. This is a 
very great matter, and I hope the honour- 
able general assembly of the state of 
Connecticut will not be brought to do 
any thing rash upon this great matter. 

Mr. Channing. Mr. Speaker — I think, 
Sir, the subject under the consideration 
of this house, is one of boundless magni- 
tude. I have been so much engaged upon 
the Committee of Finance that I have not 
been able to give to it that mature consid- 
eration, which its unimaginable 
importance demands of the members of 
the legislature of Connecticut. I am ex- 
cessively sorry Sir, to see the least 
indication of opposition to the great, the 
important, the very important subject 
now under the consideration of the delib- 
eration of the immediate representatives 
of the people of the state of Connecticut. 
I understand, Mr. Speaker, from the vari- 
ous parts of the whole state of 
Connecticut, assembled meetings of the 
numerous people, were very generally 
and very universally attended. From this 
unequivocal elucidation of their deliber- 
ate reflection upon this unparalleled 
subject, we certainly, Sir, learn their 
unbiassed opinion upon a subject which 
has, from the earliest ages of antiquity, 
down to the present very enlightened 
period of the world, occupied and over- 
whelmed the solemn consideration of 
the greatest statesman. I hope the bill 
will pass. 



36 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



[Connecticut Courant, 
June 9, 1818] 

[Tuesday, June 2, 1818] 

REFORM. 

The bill for a resolution relating to a 
revision of our present form of civil gov- 
ernment, was again taken up, and the 
blanks filled: the first blank was for the 
time when the freemen should meet to 
choose delegates, and was filled with 
"the fourth of July. " 

Mr. Griswold objected to this, on ac- 
count of its happening in a busy season 
of the year, and on Saturday, and also of 
its being a holiday. 



Another motion to adjourn, was made 
and lost. 

Mr. Reed. Mr. Speaker — If I was cer- 
tain that the public opinion was in favor of 
the measure proposed, it would have 
some influence upon my vote. But Sir, 
there is not sufficient evidence yet fur- 
nished to my mind that this is the 
prevailing wish of the people. I know, Sir, 
there are many resolutions upon your 
table, which I have not had the opportu- 
nity of examining; but were I to judge of 
them all from the one which has this after- 
noon been read from North Stonington, I 
should think the people hardly knew what 
they did want. I would never, Mr. Speaker 
said Mr. Reed, make such resolutions the 
ground of my opinion, nor be dictated to 
by the people who drafted them. 

After another ineffectual attempt to 
adjourn, the subject continued to occupy 
the attention of the house, until darkness 
rendered an adjournment indispensable. 

Adjourned to to-morrow morning 8 
o'clock. 

[American Mercury, 
June 16, 1818] 

[Tuesday, June 2, 1818] 

The Resolve concerning the mea- 
sures to be taken to form a constitution of 
Civil Government, which had been pre- 
viously debated at length, upon the 
principles of it, was now taken up to 
complete the necessary details. 

The time fixed for the citizens to 
choose delegates to a general conven- 
tion, was fixed upon the anniversary of 
American Independence. 

The place of holding the Convention 
gave rise to a little conversation. 



181 



OF CONNECTICUT 



137 



Mr. M'Clellan could not agree with 
the gentleman from East-Hartford 
[Shubael Griswoldj; he knew it was a 
merry day, but he thought if the people 
begun early in the morning, they would 
be able to get through, before they were 
disqualified to vote — the blank was ac- 
cordingly filled. 

The next blank was open for the place 
where the convention should be held. 
New-Haven and Middletown were pro- 
posed and lost — the blank was then filled 
with "Hartford" and carried. 

The next blank was for the time when 
the convention should meet, and was fi- 
nally filled with the 4th Wednesday in 
August. 



The last blanks in the bill was [sic] to 
determine what proportion of the free- 
men should ratify the constitution. 

Mr. Alsop proposed two thirds of the 
whole number of towns; three fourths of 
the whole number was named at the 
same time, and Mr. Stevens proposed 
three fifths. 

Mr. Austin remarked that two thirds 
of the whole number of towns might not 
contain one fourth of the people, he 
therefore should be opposed to that 
proportion. 

Mr. J. W. Edwards said, two thirds of 
the whole number of the towns might be 
selected, and the other third contain 
much the greatest population and 
amount of property, he thought it should 



New-Haven was the place first 
named — Upon dividing the house there 
were 

Affirmative 7 1 
Negative 8 1 

Middletown was next named — Upon 
dividing the house there were 

Affirmative 61 
Negative 87 

Upon naming Hartford, Mr. 
Pendleton said although there were 
many reasons which gave Hartford the 
preference to all other places in the state, 
yet he said there was one which he 
deemed paramount to the whole. The 
Hartford Convention was held here, and 
in this house during the last war, and he 
wished the State Convention to set in the 
same town and in the same house to wipe 
off the disgrace. 

Hartford was fixed as the place, by a 
very large majority. 

The time of holding the General Con- 
vention was fixed upon the fourth 
Wednesday of August 1818. 



38 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



not be less than four-fifths or two thirds 
of the towns which should contain the 
greatest proportion of inhabitants. 

Mr. Butler said, if the minority 
should compel the majority to accept a 
constitution, he thought it would not be 
very agreeable; he wished the blank 
might be filled with four-fifths. 

Mr. Boardman would have it ratified 
by a majority; he could see no reason for 
the minority to complain. 

Mr. H. W. Edwards, proposed that it 
should be filled with two thirds, pro- 
vided they should contain two thirds of 
the inhabitants according to the census 
of 1810. 

Mr. Edwards from Hartford was op- 
posed to that motion, and said, he did not 
know how an instrument was to be rati- 
fied unless by a vote of the state; it was 
important that the constitution should 
meet the approbation of a majority of the 
people, and of a considerable majority, or 
it need not be expected that they would 
remain under it a very long time — he 
would not leave the subject to be deter- 
mined by a bare majority; he would not 
have it less than two thirds or three fifths. 

Mr. Foot, was not in favour of any 
proportion proposed, he said he had a 
more preferable mode and hoped it 
might be adopted, he would leave the 
subject to be decided by the convention 
after they should have drawn up the in- 
strument — after the convention should 
take the subject, it no longer belonged to 
the legislature; and he questioned very 
much, whether they had the power to say 
how great a majority should ratify it. 

Mr. J. W. Edwards, said he could not 
leave it to a convention to form a consti- 
tution, and then say what proportion of 
the freemen should ratify it, they might 
confine it to one tenth part of them. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



139 



Mr. Foot, thought he had fixed that 
amendment to meet all the exigencies of 
the case — it was not what proportion of 
the freemen, but what majority of towns, 
or of the people; if there was not a major- 
ity, it would not be accepted of course. 

Mr. Griswold, said the gentleman 
from Cheshire [Samuel A. Foote] seemed 
to think the legislature had nothing to do 
with this business, but could the legisla- 
ture vest the convention with supreme 
power to ratify their own proceedings, if 
they could not fix the majority, he was 
not prepared to submit to that body, the 
power of ratifying a constitution made 
by themselves. 

Mr. Hinman, agreed with the gentle- 
man from East-Hartford [Shubael 
Griswold], that it was improper to submit 
the ratification of a constitution to the 
same body that formed it. 

Mr. Plant, hoped the motion would 
prevail, he wished to have it appear on 
the face of it, that a majority should pass 
the constitution. 

Mr. Stevens, thought it as necessary 
to restrict the convention, as it was to 
have a new constitution — if the conven- 
tion were to make laws to restrict the 
people, it was necessary for them to be 
restricted in their deliberations. 

Mr. J. W. Edwards, moved to fill the 
blank with the following clause, — 
"which when ratified by three fifths of 
the legal voters of this state, assembled 
in legal town meeting warned for that 
purpose, shall become the constitution 
and supreme law of the Land" — and the 
blank was filled. 



A motion was made to amend the re- 
solve by making it requisite that three- 
fifths of the freemen present at the meet- 
ings, should be requisite to ratify the 
constitution. 

Mr. S. A. Foot said as the legislature 
had no power to act definitely upon this 
subject, and could only devise means to 
enable the people to form one, he was de- 
cidedly opposed to legislating upon this 
subject. He would have the Convention 
itself determine what majority should be 



140 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



May, 



It was then moved to amend the 1st 
clause of the bill by erasing "be and they 
are hereby directed" and substituting 
"that it be and hereby is recom- 
mended. " — passed. 

Mr. Plant, then moved that the fol- 
lowing clause be added to the latter part 
of the bill, "be transmitted to the several 
town clerks and by them be laid before 
the towns for approbation and ratifica- 
tion." — Amended. 

Mr. Griswold said, there was no pro- 
vision for returning and counting the 
votes, but his remark was not attended to. 

It was then moved that the town meet- 
ings be held at 2 o'clock instead of 9. 

Mr. M'Clellan said, the gentleman 
did not recollect the discussion which 
had already taken place on that subject — 
he must remember that it was a holiday, 
and the freemen would be much better 
qualified to vote in the morning than in 
the afternoon. 



requisite to ratify the Constitution, 
should the people in convention, deem it 
expedient to form one. 

Mr. Hinman said, upon the first intro- 
duction of the resolution into the house, 
he was opposed to some of the provi- 
sions of the bill; and it had gone abroad 
that he was opposed to the formation of a 
Constitution; far be it from me sir. said 
he to oppose the wishes of the people 
upon this momentous subject, especially 
as they perfectly accord with my own. 
But, Sir, I hope the legislature in 
endeavouring to effect this great object, 
will do no act which looks like dictating 
to the people, or restricting the conven- 
tion. I would have them both sir, 
untrammeled and independent of any 
legislative interference. 

The motion was adopted. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



141 



It was then moved to recommit the 
bill to the Committee to be re-drafted — 
which was done. 

[Connecticut Courant, 
June 16, 1818] 

[Thursday, June 4, 1818] 

NEW CONSTITUTION. 

The report of the committee to whom 
was referred the resolution from various 
towns in the State relative to a new con- 
stitution, was read accompanied by a bill 
similar to the one which had already 
passed the house, except in the clause 
which specifies what majority should 
ratify the constitution. 

The House had already voted that the 
constitution should be ratified by three 
fifths of the legal voters assembled in 
town meeting legally warned for that 
purpose; this proposed that it should be 
ratified by a majority of the freemen — 
and after considerable debate the ques- 
tion of amendment was finally carried 81 
to 80. 



[The Times, 
June 23, 1818] 

[Thursday, June 4, 1818] 

The resolution concerning the forma- 
tion of a constitution, having been 
recommitted to the original committee, 
Mr. Plant again introduced it. 

Mr. Griswold said the bill had been 
recommitted, merely to be redrafted, and 
not with a view to vary from the princi- 
ples which had been adopted by the 
house. He said it had been decided that it 
should require three fifths of the freemen 
to adopt the constitution, should one be 
made, and the bill as now reported only a 
bare majority. 

Mr. Plant said he was not a little sur- 
prised at the remarks of the gentleman 
from East Hartford [Shubael Griswold]. 
Why recommit a bill at all if nothing is to 
be done to it? I am of the opinion, Mr. 
Speaker, that as the legislature have no 
power to make a constitution, but only to 
prescribe the mode in which the people 
should make one, that we cannot legis- 
late upon any principle to be adopted in 
it. The manner in which it shall be rati- 
fied by the people, is not for this 
assembly to determine. That a majority 
shall govern, is certainly always admit- 
ted to be correct in a Republic; and for 
the legislature to vary this principle, is 
not admissible. I would prefer, Sir, to 
have the convention itself determine 
what majority shall be requisite to adopt 
the constitution. 

The remarks of Messrs. J. W. Ed- 
wards, Stevens, Henman, Butler and 



142 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



Mr. Foot then said that he had an 
amendment to offer which would obviate 
the objections of the gentlemen from Hart- 
ford, East-Hartford, Plymouth [Jonathan 
W. Edwards, Shubael Griswold, and 
Calvin Butler] and all the rest of them, 
namely, by inserting after the word rati- 
fied, the following words; "in such manner 
as shall be directed by said convention" — 
which was afterwards put into the follow- 
ing phraseology — "by such majority of 
said qualified voters as shall be directed by 
said convention" — and passed. 

It was then moved to amend by adding 
"provided that that majority shall not be 
less than four sevenths, &c." and lost. 

The question was finally taken by 
yeas and nays, but we have not got them. 

Afternoon — It was moved that any 
gentlemen who were in town when the 
yeas and nays were taken, and had not 
given their votes, might have the privi- 
lege of putting them on the list — Lost. 



Austin, are reluctantly omitted for want 
of room. 

Mr. S. A. Foot moved to amend the 
resolution so as to authorise the conven- 
tion to determine the requisite majority 
to adopt the constitution. This question 
was taken by yeas and nays which will 
hereafter be published 

Yeas 128 
Nays 52 






Journal of a Convention of Delegates from all the towns 

in the State of Connecticut 

Holden at Hartford on the fourth Wednesday of August, AD 1818.* 

Book the 1st. 

[Convention Journal, August 26, 1818] 

Journal 

State of Connecticut, ss. Hartford August 26th AD 1818. 

This day by virtue of a Resolve of Honourable General Assembly of this 
State passed in May AD 1 8 1 8, a Convention of Delegates was formed, consist- 
ing of the following members that is to say — 

Hartford Sylvester Wells 

Nathaniel Terry 
Berlin Samuel Hart 

Samuel Norton 

Bristol Bryan Hooker 

Burlington Bliss Hart 

Canton Solomon Everest 

East-Hartford Richard Pitkin 

Samuel Pitkin 
East Windsor Charles Jenks 

Abner Reed 
Enfield Henry Terry 

William Dixon 
Farmington Timothy Pitkin 

John Treadwell 
Glastenbury Samuel Wells 

David E. Hubbard 
Granby Sadoce Wilcox 

Reuben Barker 
Hard and Aaron Church 

John Treat 

* Informational "Historical Notes" are presented in a block at the end of each day's proceedings and 
debates. Significant textual variants are presented in numbered "Textual Notes" immediately thereafter. 



144 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



Marlborough 
Simsbury 



Southington 



Suffield 



Weathersfield 



Windsor 



.Elisha Buell 
.Elisha Phelps 
Jonathan Pettibone Jr. 
.Roger Whittlesey 
Chester Grannis 
.Christopher Jones 
Asahel Morse 
.Stephen Mix Mitchell 
Levi Lusk 
.Eliakim Marshall 
[Josiah Phelps] 



New Haven 



Cheshire 



Bran ford 



Derby 

East Haven 
Guilford 



Hamden 

Meriden 

Middlebury 
Milford 



North Haven. 

Oxford 

Southbury _ 
Wallingford _ 

Waterbury _ 



Woodbridge 



Wolcott 



_William Bristoll 
Nathan Smith 
.Andrew Hull 
Charles Shelton 
.Eli Fowler 
Jonathan Rose 
.Joseph Riggs 
_Bela Farnham 
.Nathaniel Griffin 
William Todd 
.Russel Pierpont 
.Patrick Clark 
.Aaron Benedict 
.Benjamin Bull 
Samuel B. Gunn 
_Daniel Pierpont 
.David Tomlinson 
.Shadrach Osborn 
.John Andrews 
William Marks 
.Timon Miles 
Andrew Adams 
.Justus Thomas 
Chauncy Tolls 
Ambrose Ives 



New London 



.Christopher Manwaring 
Amasa Learned 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



145 



Norwich 



Bozrah 

Colchester 



Franklin 



Griswold 
Groton 



Lisbon 
Lyme _ 



Montville 



North Stonington 



Preston 



Stonington 



Waterford 



.John Turner 

James Lanman — elected Clerk 

.Roswell Fox 

.David Deming 

John Isham Junr. 

.Joshua Hyde 

.Elisha J. Abel 

.John Daboll 

William Williams 

.Daniel Braman 

.Moses Warren 

Ebenezer Brockway 

.Oliver Comstock 

.Chester Smith 

William Randall Junr. 

.Denison Palmer 

Nathaniel Kimball 

William Randall 

Amos Gallup 

.Charles Avery 



Fairfield 



Danbury 



Brookfield . 
Greenwich . 

Huntington. 



New Canaan _ 
New Fairfield. 
Newtown 



Norwalk 



Redding 



Ridgefield 



David Hill 
Gideon Tomlinson 
.Friend Starr 
William Cook 
.Noah A. Lacy 
.Clark Sanford 
Enos Lockwood 
Timothy S. Wells 
William Shelton 
.Nathan Seeley 
.Samuel T. Barnum 
.Gideon Botsford 
James B. Fairman 
.Moses Gregory 
John Eversley 
.Samuel Whiting 
Lemuel Sanford 
.Joshua King 
Abner Gilbert Junr. 



146 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



Sherman, 
Stamford 

Stratford. 

Trumbull 
Weston 



Wilton 



.Jedidiah Graves 
.James Stevens 
John Weed Junr. 
.Pierpont Edwards 
Robert Fairchild 
Lewis Burton 
.Abel Gregory 
Isaac Bennett 
Erastus Sturges 



Windham 



Ashford 



Brooklyn _ 
Canterbury 

Columbia _ 
Hampton _ 
Killingly _ 



Lebanon 



Mansfield 



Plainfield 



Pom fret 



Sterling 

Thompson 

Voluntown 
Woodstock 



.Peter Webb 
Zacheus Waldo 
.Josias Byles 
William Perkins 
.Roger W. Williams 
.Luther Payne 
Daniel Frost 
.Silas Fuller 
.Ebenezer Griffin 
.Luther Warren 
Ezra Hutchins 
.Stephen D. Tilden 
Thomas Babcock 
.Edmund Freeman 
Artemas Gurley 
.Elias Woodward 
John Dunlap 
.Darius Matthewson 
Lemuel Ingalls 
.Dixon Hall 
.George Learned 
Jonathan Nichols Junr. 
.Daniel Keigwin 
.John McClellan 
Elias Childs 2d 



Litchfield 



Barkhamsted 



Oliver Wolcott- 
John Welch 
.Samuel Hayden 
Oliver Mills 



elected President 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



147 



Bethlem 
Canaan 



Colbrook 



Cornwall 



Goshen 



Harwinton 



Kent 



New Hartford 



New Milford 



Norfolk 



Plymouth 
Roxbury_ 
Salisbury 



Sharon 



Torrington 



Warren 



Washington 

Watertown _ 
Winchester 



Woodbury 



.Nehemiah Lambert 
.William M. Burrall 
William Douglas 
_Grove Pinney 
Arah Phelps 
_Philo Swift 
Oliver Burnham 
_Adino Hale 
Theodore North 
James Brace 
Uriah Hopkins 
.Lewis St. John 
_Aaron Austin 
Jonathan Marsh 
_Orange Merwin 
Jehiel Williams 
.Augustus Pettibone 
Joseph Battell 
.Calvin Butler 
John Trowbridge 
.Daniel Johnson 
Samuel Church 
.Cyrus Swan 
Saml. E. Everett 
.Abel Hinsdale 
William Battel 
John Tallmadge 
.Hermanus Marshall 
Ensign Bushnell 
_Amos Baldwin 
Levi Piatt 
Joseph Miller 
.Nathaniel Perry 
Daniel Bacon 



Middletown 



Chatham 



Durham 



.Alexander Wolcott 
Joshua Stow 
.Enoch Sage 
Benjamin Hurd 
.Thomas Lyman 
Lemuel Guernsey 



148 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



Haddam 



East-Haddam 
Killingworth 
Saybrook 



_Ezra Brainerd 
Jonathan Huntington 
.Solomon Blakeslee 
William Hungerford 
.George Elliot 
Dan Lane 
Clark Nott 
Elisha Sill 



Tolland 



Bolton _ 
Coventry 



Ellington 
Hebron 



Somers 



Stafford 



Union 



Vernon 



Willington 



.Ashbel Chapman 
Eliphalet Young 
.Saul Alvord Junr. 
Jesse Root 
Elisha Edgerton 
.Asa Willey 
.Daniel Burrows 
John S. Peters 
.Benjamin Phelps 
Giles Pease 
.Ephraim Hyde 
Nathan Johnson 
.Ingoldsby W. Crawford 
Robert Paul 
.Phineas Talcott 
.Jonathan Sibley 
Spafford Brigham 



Hartford-Wednesday May [i.e., August] 26th AD 1818 

More than two thirds of the Delegates chosen in the State having appeared 
in the State House about ten oClock AM. this day, the Convention was called to 
order by the Honourable Jesse Root, he being the oldest Delegate present. The 
Convention were requested to bring in their votes for a Clerk of their body. 
They chose James Lanman a Delegate from the town of Norwich to be the 
Clerk of the Convention who was sworn accordingly. — The Convention then 
Elected His Excellency Oliver Wolcott Esqr. a Delegate from the town of 
Litchfield to be President of the Convention. He accordingly took the chair. 

The qualifications of the members were then exhibited and examined and 
the oath or affirmation agreeably to said Resolve of Assembly was duly admin- 
istered by the Clerk of the Convention. The Convention being organized, 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 149 

Prayers were offered up by the Reverend Doctr. Abel Flint. And a resolve 
passed requesting the attendance of the several Clergymen of Hartford to 
attend and offer prayers, as Chaplains to the Convention at the opening of the 
session on each day during its continuance — Messrs. Nathaniel Terry, James 
Stevens, Timothy Pitkin, Stephen Mix Mitchell and Amasa Learned were ap- 
pointed a Committee to frame a system of Rules, for the order and government 
of the Convention during its session. 

The Sheriff of Hartford County was appointed as officer of the Convention 
to attend during the session and directed to have two Constables to be in wait- 
ing to execute the orders of the Convention — 

adjourned to meet at three oClock P.M. this day. — 

Met according to adjournment, some members appeared, were qualified 
and took their seats. 

The committee who were appointed to frame rules of proceeding made their 
report in part — that the rules of the House of Representatives in the General 
Assembly of this State be adopted as a temporary system until other provision 
should be made so far as said rules were applicable to this Convention — which 
report was accepted: 

On motion of Mr. Stevens, 

Resolved that this Convention do deem it expedient to proceed at this time 
to form a Constitution of Civil Government for the people of this State. 

Passed in the affirmative — and the Convention adjourned until tomorrow 
morning at 9 o' Clock. 






150 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



[Convention Debates, August 26, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

On Wednesday, the 26th inst., agree- 
ably to an Act of the last Legislature of this 
State, the Delegates to the Convention as- 
sembled in the Court-House in Hartford. 

At 10 o'clock, Judge Root called for 
order; he suggested it as a question, 
whether the Convention should first pro- 
ceed to the choice of a Clerk or their 
President. After some remarks it was de- 
cided that the Clerk should be first chosen. 

Mr. N. Terry^ suggested, that it was 
questionable with some, whether one 
could be chosen Clerk, who was not a 
member. 

Mr. Treadwell thought there could be 
no doubt that the Convention had a right 
to choose a Clerk who was not a member, 
but it might be doubted, whether it would 
be expedient to choose one who was not; 
there could be no inconvenience in 
choosing a member, and he thought on 
the whole it would be expected of them. 

Judge Mitchell doubted whether a 
member of any Assembly of this kind 
was ever made Clerk; the Clerk is sworn 
to do duty as Clerk; shall he take two 
oaths, and be sworn also to do duty as a 
member of the Convention? there ap- 
peared to be a manifest impropriety in 
choosing a Clerk from the members of 
the Convention; and he would therefore 
have him chosen from the people. 

The Chairman said the question 
ought to be decided before they pro- 
ceeded to give their votes. 

Mr. T. Pitkin considered it improper to 
take a vote on the subject. In the House of 
Representatives the Clerk was chosen by 
special vote, but here there was no such 



[American Mercury] 

The Members of the Convention, 
elected to frame a Constitution of civil 
government for the State of Connecticut, 
assembled in this City on Wednesday the 
26th inst. when His Excellency OLIVER 
WOLCOTT, was chosen President, and 
JAMES LANMAN, Esq. Clerk. A re- 
solve was passed requesting the Rev. 
Clergy of the different denominations, in 
Hartford, to officiate alternately as chap- 
lains during the session. The House then 
proceeded to business. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



151 



regulation; he considered the Convention 
at liberty to choose either a member or 
one who was not a member for their 
Clerk, and he thought they should be left 
to give in their votes as they pleased. This 
course was adopted, and the following is 
a statement of the votes. 

1st vote 2d vote 3d vote 



Jas. Lanman, 


37 


68 declared 
chosen 


Thomas Day, 
Gid. Tomlinson, 


35 
26 


66 
9 


R. I. Ingersoll, 
Timothy Pitkin, 
Elisha Phelps, 
H. W. Edwards, 


21 

18 
9 

4 


21 
9 

1 



J. W. Edwards, 


3 





Wm. Bristol, 


2 


2 


Lem. Whitman, 


2 





Wm. Perkins, 


1 





And. Kingsbury, 
Nathan Smith, 


1 







The oath was administered to the 
Clerk, and the Convention proceeded to 
the choice of a President. 

His Excellency OLIVER WOLCOTT was 
declared chosen, and took the Chair, after 
making the following very short address: 

Gentlemen — I am duly sensible of 
the obligations I am under, for the honor 
you have conferred upon me. I shall need 
your assistance in the discharge of the 
various duties of the station which I am 
called to fill, and being entirely unac- 
quainted with the business, I trust I shall 
find those of experience and wisdom 
who will cheerfully give it. 

The clerk read the Act of the last legis- 
lature for calling a convention, and the 
president then called for certificates of 
membership. After the members were 
sworn, 

Mr. Treadwell introduced a resolu- 
tion to request the clergy of the town to 



52 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



make arrangements for discharging the 
duties of chaplain to the convention 
which was adopted. 1 

Mr. N. Terry moved for the appoint- 
ment of a committee to prepare rules for 
the regulation of the convention. The ap- 
pointment of the committee was referred 
to the president, and Mr. N. Terry, Mr. T. 
Pitkin, and Mr. Stevens, were declared 
appointed." 

Adjourned till 3 o'clock, P.M. 

Afternoon. — The committee appointed 
to form rules for the regulation of the con- 
vention reported in part that the rules 
regulating the house of representatives 
should be adopted by the convention, until 
others should be reported by the commit- 
tee. Report accepted. 

Mr. T. Pitkin then moved that the 
committee be increased to five. Judge 
Mitchell, and Mr. A. Larned were ac- 
cordingly added by the president. 

Mr. Stevens said, that according to 
the Resolutions passed by the last Legis- 
lature, the Convention was to form a 
Constitution of civil government for the 
State, if they deemed it expedient; he 
thought it best to decide that question, 
and therefore moved the following 
resolution: — 

Resolved by this Convention, That 
we proceed at this time to form and 
devise a constitution of civil government 
for this State. 

Mr. Treadwell, remarked that the 
subject was very important, he did not 
know what opinion he should ultimately 
adopt; but at present, he did not see occa- 
sion for a new constitution; he did not 
see the necessity of a convention; but 
reasons might be suggested, and they 
might be such reasons as he should be in- 
fluenced by; but as the reasons did not 



Mr. Stevens of Stamford, offered a re- 
solve, stating that it was "expedient for 
the Convention to proceed, at this time, 
to the formation of a Constitution of civil 
government, for the people of this State." 
After a desultory debate, in which the re- 
solve was opposed by Messrs. Root, and 
Treadwell and supported by Messrs. 
Stevens and Pitkin; it passed by an 
almost unanimous vote, there being but 
two in the negative. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



53 



then exist in his mind, he was not pre- 
pared to vote. It had been said that we 
have no constitution of civil government 
in this state; but he believed that few 
would be found in the Convention pre- 
pared to adopt 3 that opinion; prepared to 
say that all our system of laws is a base- 
less fabrick. We have a constitution; one 
which has carried us through two wars; 
one which has existed for nearly two 
centuries; and which has secured to the 
people, peace, harmony and prosperity. 
If nothing more, we have a constitution 
which allows the people to appoint a leg- 
islature, to choose a governor, 
lieutenant-governor and council once in 
a year, and representatives twice a year; 
which authorizes the legislature to orga- 
nize courts of justice; to regulate them, 
and call them to account for the manner 
in which they may discharge their offi- 
cial duties. If we have a constitution 
which is beneficial in no other respect, it 
cannot be denied that we have one which 
is highly beneficial in this. So far as the 
people of Connecticut have exercised 
these privileges, they are a free, sover- 
eign, and independent State; they have 
exercised them both in peace and in war. 
The supreme power is vested in the free- 
men and the legislature. The constitution 
has been the support of good order for 
nearly two centuries; it has been ap- 
proved by the people, and this is a more 
sure declaration of their sentiments than 
the votes of a few town-meetings. Noth- 
ing is more certain than that a 
constitution was formed in 1639, and in 
substance is the one which we now have. 
The act of Charles 2d was necessary only 
for political purposes; we were then his 
subjects, and it was necessary to have his 
sanction; but in 4 76 we became independ- 
ent; the original constitution then 



154 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



returned upon us, so far as it was con- 
tained in the charter, and that constitution 
can be clearly pointed out; he knew not 
what reasons might be shown for altering 
it, nor could he say that he should not vote 
for an amendment, but until some reason 
should be suggested, he was not prepared 
to vote for it. 

Mr. Stevens, said he had introduced 
the resolution, not expecting it would 
excite discussion; he believed it would 
be acknowledged on all hands that we 
had no written constitution in the State; 
by the proceedings of the last legislature, 
that body seemed to take it for granted 
that we had none; they passed a resolve 
to call a Convention to make a Constitu- 
tion: if we had had a Constitution, it 
seemed to him, that the language would 
have been to form a new constitution — 
that we had a mode of getting along he 
did not deny — the Constitution of 1639, 
did well enough in the charter, but since 
76, we have had no sovereign, and 
needed no chartered rights. The Consti- 
tution of 1639, was not made for a free 
people; it did well enough for the State at 
that time, it was sufficient for regulating 
their municipal concerns; but in 76 the 
charter became a dead letter; but the 
people since that time have followed it, 
and followed it with many advantages; 
we 4 need not anticipate what might be 
said, or repeat what has been said on the 
subject; but the legislatures have never 
had a right to make a constitution: the 
people are the only true sovereigns, and 
they have never delegated the power. But 
admit that we have a Constitution, the 
people would now have a right to make a 
new one; he knew that it had been con- 
sidered heterodox to say that we have no 
Constitution — but look at the fact; he 
could not find a chapter or verse of it; if 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



155 



uses" formed a Constitution, he would 
agree that we have one: the people 
choose a Legislature, and many benefits 
grow out of it; still it was the part of 
human prudence to confine the powers 
of the legislature within certain limits. 
The people have the right to do it, and if 
they have, no man will prevent them: 
They can form a Constitution legiti- 
mately; it is a just and wise principle, that 
the majority shall rule the minority; the 
charter did well enough under a king, but 
the people must now submit to self-gov- 
ernment, and they mean to have rules to 
regulate them. 

Mr. T. Pitkin, said he did not rise to a 
discussion of the question, whether the 
state of Connecticut has a constitution; at 
this time he deemed it entirely unneces- 
sary, it was a discussion which could 
throw no light upon the subject before 
the house, and from which the house 
could not derive the least advantage; had 
he been a member of the last legislature, 
he should probably not have voted with 
the gentleman from Stamford [James 
Stevens]; but that legislature had thought 
proper to appoint a convention, & it had 
become the duty of the convention to 
decide on the expediency of forming a 
new constitution — at this stage of the 
business he was not pledged to vote for a 
constitution; he should only vote for it 
(for he was inclined to vote for the reso- 
lution) if it should meet his approbation; 
he was not pledged, and he believed the 
convention would exercise the rights of 
independent men — it could not be im- 
portant to discuss the question of a 
present constitution; for if we had one, 
the people had a right to alter it, and he 
must confess that it had occurred to him, 
that under all the circumstances, if the 
question should be taken to proceed to 



156 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 26, 



form a new constitution, he should be in- 
clined to proceed. — Though he might be 
of the same opinion with his hon. col- 
league, on the subject of our present 
constitution, he was inclined to proceed 
without entering into any discussion, for 
it could lead to no profitable result — to 
vote to proceed is no more than saying it 
is expedient, and if we get a better con- 
stitution we shall get a very good one; 
but whether he should vote for one at any 
rate was another question. 

Some further remarks were made by 
Judge Root, Mr. A. Wolcott, and Mr. 
Austin, but were not understood. 

The resolution was adopted almost 
unanimously and the convention ad- 
journed to 9 o'clock tomorrow 
morning[.] 



No other business worthy of notice 
was transacted on this day. 



Historical Notes, August 26, 1818 

The Convention's Journal opens with a reference to the Assembly's authorizing resolutions 
(above, pp. 42-^3). The name of Josiah Phelps, a delegate from Windsor, was omitted from the 
mansucript anendance roster; we have supplied it in brackets. Abel Flint, the pastor of the Second 
Congregational Church in Hartford, who had delivered the Election Sermon in May 1816 (S.R., 
XVIII, 36, 36n), offered prayers. For the current rules of the state House of Representatives, tempo- 
rarily adopted by the Convention, see above, p. 106n. In the vote for clerk, reported in the 
newspapers but not in the Convention's Journal, the Mirror (Aug. 31, 1818) and three other papers 
recorded one ballot for Nathan Smith in the second column. Regarding mis vote, the Register (Aug. 
29, 1818) observed that "there were 104 Republican votes, to 67 for federal candidates — majority 
of Republican voters present 37; which is the average majority in the House." 

The records for the first day noted appointments of and resolutions and speeches by persons 
who would play key roles during the Convention's deliberations. For Gov. Oliver Wolcott of 
Litchfield, elected president, and James Lanman of Norwich, appointed clerk, see S.R.. XVIII. 
xxi, 239n. Coventry's Jesse Root (1736-1822), the senior delegate who opened the meeting, had a 
long and prominent career, serving earlier as a member of the Council, representative to the Con- 
tinental Congress, delegate to the 1788 state convention that ratified the U.S. Constitution, and 
chief judge of the state Superior Court; in recent years he had continued to act as a justice of the 
peace and occasional state representative. ANB. Other important figures served on the committee 
to frame rules of procedure, and several of them made motions and speeches on the first day of the 
Convention. For Federalist delegate Nathaniel Terry of Hartford, see S.R.. XVIII. 153n; he had re- 
cently come up short in a bid for re-nomination to the U.S. Congress. A similar fate had befallen 
Timothy Pitkin of Farmington (1766-1847), the son of a Congregationalist minister, defender of 
the established religious order, and a Federalist who had first been elected to the U.S. House of 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 157 

Representatives in 1 805 after a prominent career in the state House of Representatives; he was to 
resume his service in the state legislature in 1819. ANB. Stephen Mix Mitchell of Wethersfield 
(1743-1835), another prominent Federalist, had served in both houses of the General Assembly, 
as a Connecticut delegate to the U.S. Congress during the Confederation, in the 1 788 state ratify- 
ing convention, as a U.S. senator, and as chief judge of the Connecticut Superior Court until his 
retirement in 1814; since then he continued to act as ajustice of the peace. ANB. The committee 
on rules also included the influential Republican leader James Stevens of Stamford (S.R., XVIII, 
190-9 In), who was to play a prominent role in the Convention. 

The newspaper proceedings and debates for August 26 introduced three more of the Conven- 
tion's major figures, Federalist stalwarts John Treadwell and Aaron Austin and old Republican 
Alexander Wolcott. Ex-Gov. Treadwell (1745-1823) of Farmington, a bastion of the state's polit- 
ical and religious establishment, had served in both houses of the General Assembly before 
multiple terms as lieutenant governor and one year in the state's highest office; since then he had 
continued as ajustice of the peace, sat in the state House of Representatives for several terms, 
participated in a number of religious and charitable organizations, and served in the Hartford 
Convention of 1814. Dexter, Yale Biographies, III, 247-51. Austin, a long-time member of the 
Council, had recently retired from that body, but had subsequently sat in the House of Represen- 
tatives for New Hartford in May 1818: S.R., XVIII, xliv, xliv(n). Alexander Wolcott (1758- 
1828), a first cousin of Gov. Oliver Wolcott, had served in the Assembly as a representative from 
Windsor two decades earlier; initially an Antifederalist in politics, he had become a Republican 
and was appointed federal collector for the port in Middletown by President Jefferson in 1801. 
Dexter, Yale Biographies, IV, 80-82. He had been a prominent Jeffersonian leader during Con- 
necticut's intense partisan controversies during the early years of the nineteenth century. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, August 26, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 1, 1818, and the Mercury; Sept. 1, 1818. 

1. The Register (Aug. 29, 1818) stated that Treadwell's motion was "that a chaplain be in- 
vited to attend and 'pray with, and for the Convention.'" 

2. The Journal (Sept. 1, 1818) stated that the president "nominated" these three committee 
members. 

3. adopt] support Journal, Sept. 1, 1818. 

4. we] He Journal, Sept. 1, 1818. 

5. uses] usages Journal, Sept. 1, 1818. 



158 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 27, 



[Convention Journal, August 27, 1818] 

Hurt ford Thursday August 27th AD 1 8 18 Thursday 

In Convention: members appeared, were qualified and took their seats. 

On motion of Mr. Fairchild, 

Resolved that a committee be appointed by Ballot, to draft a constitution and 
report the same to this Convention to consist of three members from each County. 
Passed in the affirmative. 

Voted that there be a recess of one hour, which was had — The convention 
then met and proceeded to choose said committee. The following gentlemen 
were chosen — 



For the 



For the 



For the 



For the 



For the 



For the 



For the 



For the 



County of Hartford 


Messrs. Sylvester Wells 




Timothy Pitkin & 




Elisha Phelps 


County of New Haven 


Messrs. Wm. Bristoll 




Nathan Smith & 




Wm. Todd 


County of New London . 


Messrs. Moses Warren 




Amasa Learned & 




James Lanman 


County of Fairfield 


Messrs. Pierpont Edwards 




James Stevens & 




Gideon Tomlinson 


County of Windham 


Messrs. Peter Webb 




George Learned & 




Edmund Freeman 


County of Litchfield 


Messrs. John Welch 




Augustus Pettibone & 




Orange Merwin 


County of Middlesex 


Messrs. Joshua Stow 




Wm. Hungerford & 




Thomas Lyman 


County of Tolland 


Messrs. Daniel Burrows 



Asa Willey & 
John S. Peters— 



And the convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9-o'Clock — 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



159 



[Convention Debates, August 27, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Thursday, August 27. 

After Prayers by the Rev. Mr. 
Nichols, Mr. Fairchild introduced the 
following Resolution, 

Resolved, That a committee be ap- 
pointed by ballot to draft a constitution and 
report the same to this convention, to con- 
sist of three members from each County. 

Mr. A. Wolcott, considered it expedi- 
ent to adopt such method of doing the 
business as would create as little expence 
of time as the nature of the subject to be 
discussed would admit of — he had 
formed an opinion that a different course 
from the one proposed to be pursued, 
would create less expence of time. His 
plan however had not much order in it, 
but he thought the business would be 
sooner accomplished by taking up the 
subject in detached propositions, and 
discussing distinct principles — that must 
be done FINALLY, and it could better be 
done without the report of a committee, 
than with it — the house could form their 
opinion better. For instance the questions 
who shall exercise the rights of suffrage; 
who shall be eligible to office; what shall 
constitute the parts of the Legislature; 
how shall they be chosen; of what 
number shall the senate consist; can all 
be better discus[s]ed if brought before 
this body separately than if embodied in 
an instrument. — If left to a committee to 
report, it is a question of more impor- 
tance when they will report — if they do 
report, every individual will have a right 
to make his objections, and the same 
would be true if an individual were to lay 
in an instrument, all this must be gone 



[American Mercury] 

Thursday, 27th. 

Mr. Fairchild of Stratford, presented 
a resolution to appoint a committee of 
three from each county by ballot to 
frame a constitution. 



Mr. Wolcott of Middletown: ob- 
served, that in his opinion, in forming 1 a 
constitution, the best mode would be, to 
submit to the House distinct propositions 
on the constituent part of it. This course 
would afford to every member an oppor- 
tunity for offering what he pleased; and 
expedite the business. After the several 
parts shall have been discussed and 
adopted, then they could be submitted to 
a committee to be engrossed. 



160 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 27, 



through with, and he did not think the 
mode proposed was the best, because it 
was the least expeditious — better to pro- 
pose separate and distinct principles, and 
when discussed, appoint a committee to 
ar[r]ange them, this would avoid in the 
first instance, the drudgery of verbal crit- 
icisms, which it was not necessary to 
make, until the principles had been 
adopted. To show that this was a better 
mode, he begged leave to read an exam- 
ple by way of illustration. 

Resolved, That the following princi- 
ple be adopted as a part of the 
Constitution of this State, that every citi- 
zen of the age of 21 years, &c. shall have 
a right. &c. to exercise the privilege of a 
freeman of this State. 

Mr. N. Smith did not know as the 
mode of procedure could be very impor- 
tant, but it was his opinion that the 
subject should be refer[r]ed to a Com- 
mittee; it was certainly inconvenient to 
discuss abstract principles, and settle 
distinct propositions without seeing their 
connection and bearing. Gentlemen 
spoke of expediting the business; he con- 
sidered that to be the great object of the 
Committee, he did not conceive it to be 
necessary, or that the Committee, would 
sit till they should have completed the in- 
strument, without reporting; they would 
report from time to time in part, and their 
reports might be made the subject of dis- 
cussion, as they should come in — this he 
conceived would obviate the objection of 
the gentleman from Middletown [Alex- 
ander Wolcott] — the mode of reporting 
from time to time would occupy the con- 
vention, and he was on the whole in 
favour of the Resolution on the table. 



Mr. Smith, of New Haven, said that 
he did not think the mode of proceeding 
very important. The objection to the re- 
solve was, that the committee would take 
up some time; and it was supposed, that 
the plan of presenting distinct proposi- 
tions would expedite business. But the 
appointment of the committee would not 
prevent individuals of the House from 
presenting any propositions, which 
could be discussed while the committee 
should be engaged; and the committee 
might from time to time, report such 
propositions, in part. He was in favor of 
the resolve and hoped it would pass. 



Mr. Wolcott made a reply, which we 
could not hear. 



OF CONNECTICUT 



161 



Judge Root and Mitchel, and Mr. 
Treadwell made some further remarks, 
which could not be heard distinctly. 



Mr. Stow of Middletown, observed — 
If the committee were to frame a consti- 
tution which must be adopted by the 
House, he would coincide with his col- 
league on this subject. But this was not 
the case. They would merely propose 
one. He believed that they would be 
better able to concentrate the various 
opinions which might exist in different 
parts of the State, than would a larger 
body, and therefore expedite the business 
of the session. 

Mr. Root said that a constitution was a 
system of government and in order to 
judge of any system we ought to see the 
whole of it. If the business were taken up 
by distinct propositions, there would be 
as many as there are men to stand in 
nomination. 

Mr. Mitchell spoke so low that we 
could not distinctly hear him. The sub- 
stance of his remarks seemed to be "that 
each County should appoint its own 
committee." 

Mr. M'Lellan would prefer an ap- 
pointment by the President. He said that 
every body knew the President, though he 
might not know them. On the whole how- 
ever, he would not oppose the resolution. 

Mr. Treadwell of Farmington — to 
take up the subject by distinct proposi- 
tions, would be liable to many 
objections. Unless the business be done 
in this general way, there would be much 
discussion. The committee he believed 
would take it up coolly. And they might 
report on distinct heads. 

Mr. Aaron Austin, spoke, but we 
could not hear any part of his speech. 

Mr. Burrows believed that the mode 
pointed out in the resolve was a good 
one. The committe[e] could bring the 
subject sooner to a point, than could the 
whole house. 



162 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 27-28, 



The resolve passed by a large major- 
ity. When the following gentlemen were 
elected, viz. [Committee List] 



The resolution, however, was unani- 
mously adopted — and after a recess of an 
hour, the House proceeded to the choice 
o( the Committee. [Committee List] 

Adjourned to 9 o'clock tomorrow 
morning. 

Historical Notes, August 27, 1818 

A number of prominent figures made their appearance in the records of the Convention's 
second day. Robert Fairchild (1775-1835), soon to be chosen assistant clerk, made the motion to 
appoint a drafting committee. A prominent Republican, he had represented Stratford in the Gen- 
eral Assembly in the early 1800s and was to serve again in the 1820s; he had been appointed a 
judge of the Fairfield county court at the May 1818 session. Dexter, Yale Biographies, V, 72. 

Among the members of the drafting committee. Pierpont Edwards (1750-1826) of Stratford 
gained particular prominence as chairman. The son of the great theologian Jonathan Edwards, 
Pierpont was a graduate of the College of New Jersey (Princeton) and served in the Connecticut 
House of Representatives in the 1 780s. He retired from politics for a number of years in the next 
decade, but returned in the early 1800s as a key organizer of the state's Republican party and a 
leader of the movement to call a constitutional convention. He was state's attorney for New Haven 
County from 1798 to 1805 and a federal district judge, appointed by President Jefferson, from 
1806 until his death. ANB. Others on the drafting committee also played important roles in the 
Convention. William Bristol of New Haven had been speaker of the state House of Representa- 
tives in October 1817. Gideon Tomlinson of Fairfield was elected House clerk at the same time 
and served as speaker in May 1818: S.R., XVIII, 239n. Nathan Smith (1770-1835), a New Haven 
lawyer and a long-time justice of the peace, later served as U.S. district attorney and as a U.S. Sen- 
ator; although nominated for the Council on both the Federalist and Tolerationist tickets in the fall of 
1 8 17 he had declined to run: S.R., XVII, 536; XVIII, xliv, 240; above, p. 5n; DAB; Biographical Dic- 
tionary of Congress, p. 1846. Moses Warren of Lyme had served in the state House of 
Representatives; he and other Republican delegates at the fall 1817 legislative session had issued a 
party statement calling for a constitutional convention: above, p. xiv. Joshua Stow of Middletown was 
identified by J. Hammond Trumbull as one of the authors, along with Gideon Tomlinson. of the Con- 
vention's Article VII on religion; he was a long-time Republican politician. Trumbull. Constitutions 
of Connecticut, pp. 52, 55n. Daniel Burrows of Hebron, who had represented his town in the General 
Assembly, had spoken against the 'Act on Literature and Religion" in October 1816 as a Methodist 
opposed to public financial support for religious societies. S.R., XVIII, 143, 144. 

J. Hammond Trumbull identified only five Federalists as members of the drafting commiuee: 
Timothy Pitkin. William Todd, George Learned. Augustus Pettibone. and Asa Willey. Trumbull, 
Constitutions of Connecticut, p. 51. The debates as reported in the newspapers for August 27 in- 
troduced another leading Federalist. John McClellan (1767-1858), a Woodstock lawyer, 
Windham County justice of the peace, and many-time representative to the General Assembly. 
Dexter, Yale Biographies, IV, 425-26. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, August 27, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant. Sept. 1, 1818, and the Mercury; Sept. 1, 1818. 
1. forming] framing Herald, Sept. 1, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 163 

[Convention Journal, August 28, 1818] 

Friday Aug: 28th 

On motion — Resolved that an assistant Clerk be appointed — an^ The mem- 
bers were requested by the President to bring in their votes for an assistant 
Clerk, and Robert Fairchild, a delegate from the Town of Stratford was 
chosen — who was duly sworn accordingly. — 

The committee appointed to frame rules & orders for the convention, by their 
chairman Mr. N. Terry, reported a resolution, which was amended, and the 19th 
rule added on motion of Mr. A. Wolcott — The resolution was then adopted — 

And the convention adjourned until this afternoon at 2-o'Clock — 

A motion was made by Mr. Treadwell to reconsider the vote of the conven- 
tion adopting the 19th rule, and was determined in the negative — 

The Resolution reported by said Committee appointed to frame rules &c, 
and amended as aforesaid in the following words — 

Resolved that the following Rules & orders be adopted as the rules and 
orders of the convention — 

1 . The President shall take the chair every day, at the hour to which the con- 
vention shall have adjourned, and after prayers & roll-call shall immediately 
call the convention to order, and if a quorum be present proceed to business. — 

2. In the absence of a quorum the President may adjourn the convention to 
the afternoon, or to the next sitting day. At all other times during the Session an 
adjournment shall be pronounced by the President, on motion, no objection 
being made; but if an adjournment be objected to, the question shall be decided 
by the convention without debate. 

3. The President shall preserve decorum & order, and shall decide questions 
of order without debate, subject to an appeal to the convention — He shall rise 
to put a question, but may state it sitting. The question first moved & seconded 
shall be first put, and in all cases the sense of the convention shall be first taken 
upon the largest number or sum, and longest time proposed in any question — 

4. In all cases when a vote is taken without a division the President shall de- 
termine whether it is , or is not a vote; and in all doubtful cases, he shall ask "Is 
it doubted"? If the vote be disputed, it shall be tried again; but after the Presi- 
dent has declared the vote, it shall not be recalled, unless by a regular motion 
for reconsideration, made by a member in the vote of the convention. 

5. If the President doubt a vote, or a division be called by a member, the 
question shall be again put and those voting in the affirmative shall first rise 
from their seats — If the President still doubts, or a count be required, the 



164 PUBLIC records August28, 

President, or if he so direct, the Clerk, shall count them while standing, and if 
required by a member, those of a contrary mind shall rise and be counted — 

6. The Yeas and Nays shall be taken on any question, when moved for and 
seconded, if supported by one fourth of the convention. 

7. In all cases of balloting, the President shall vote; in other cases he shall 
not vote, unless the convention be equally divided, or unless his vote, if given 
to the minority, will make the division equal, and in case of such equal division 
the question shall be lost. — 

8. When the convention adjourns the members shall keep their seats until the 
President and Clerk, if they please, go out — Then the members may follow. — 

9. When any member is about to speak in debate, or deliver any matter to the 
convention, he shall rise and respectfully address "Mr. President" — If two or 
more rise at once, the President shall name the member who is first to speak. 

10. Any member who has spoken once or oftener upon any question, shall 
give place to any other member rising to speak, who has not spoken so often 
upon that question. 

1 1 . The President may appoint any member to preside in his stead, for any 
time not exceeding one day at a time; and he may during the time of such mem- 
ber's presiding, debate and vote on the floor of the House, like other members; 
and the member thus appointed to preside shall have and may exercise all the 
powers of President during the time of his presiding. 

12. No debate shall be allowed after a question is put and remains undecided. 
Whilst the President is putting any question or is addressing the convention, no 
member shall walk out of, or across the room; nor either in such case, nor when 
the roll is calling, or any thing is in public reading before the convention, or when 
a member is speaking, shall entertain any private discourse; nor when any 
member is speaking shall pass between him and the chair. 

13. When a motion is made and seconded, it shall be stated to the conven- 
tion by the President before any debate be had thereon, but every motion shall 
be reduced to writing if the President so direct, or any member desire it. — 

14. When a question is under debate, no motion shall be received unless to 
amend, to commit, to postpone, for the previous question, to lie on the table, 
for the orders of the day, or to adjourn, nor either of these after the question is 
put. But a motion to adjourn shall supercede every other motion, and shall be 
decided without debate. 

15. When a motion is stated by the President, or read by the Clerk, it shall be 
in possession of the convention, but may be withdrawn at any time before deci- 
sion or amendment, but not after amendment, unless the convention give leave. 

16. All committees shall be appointed by the President unless otherwise 
specially directed by the convention. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



65 



17. If any member, in speaking or otherwise, transgress the rules or orders 
of the convention, the President shall, or any member may call to order, and if 
speaking, he shall sit down, unless permitted to explain, and the President shall 
then decide the question of order, but the party may appeal from the decision of 
the President, to the convention, who shall decide thereon without debate. 

18. The Clerk shall keep a journal of the proceedings of the convention, in 
which shall be entered all the votes that shall be taken in the convention, and 
the yeas and nays when taken, and all other things proper to be entered in such 
a journal; and every morning, immediately after roll-call, the journal of the 
preceding day shall be read, and all necessary corrections of the same be made. 

19th. A majority of the convention shall constitute a quorum. — 

The Committee appointed to draft a constitution, by their chairman Mr. Ed- 
wards, reported in part, submitting to the consideration of the convention a 
Preamble , and Bill of Rights . 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott, ordered that 600 copies of said report be 
printed for the use of the members — and the convention adjourned until tomor- 
row morning at 9-o' Clock. 

[Convention Debates, August 28, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Friday Morning, August 28. 

After prayers by the Rev. Dr. Flint, 
the Convention proceeded to the choice 
of Robert Fairchild, as assistant clerk, 
Mr. Lanman being absent on the com- 
mittee for drafting a constitution. 

The committee appointed to devise 
rules for the regulation of the conven- 
tion, made a further report, which was 
accepted with amendment, viz. by 
adding a rule which provides that a ma- 
jority shall constitute a quorum. — 
Adjourned to 2 o'clock P.M. 

Friday Afternoon. 

Motion was made to reconsider the 
vote which had been taken on the report 
of the committee for devising rules, &c. 



[American Mercury] 

Friday, 28th. 

Mr. Lanman being engaged on the 
committee for framing a constitution, a 
resolve was passed providing for the 
election of an assistant clerk, when Mr. 
R. Fairchild, was duly chosen. The com- 
mittee who were appointed to draw up 
the rules of the House, made a further 
report. Several amendments were 
adopted after some discussion which 
was of no immediate public interest. 



66 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 28-29, 



The ground of the motion, was the 
amendment, which provides that a ma- 
jority shall constitute a quorum to do 
business — the debate was of some inter- 
est, but we have not the minutes of it. For 
reconsideration, 85 — contra, 108.' 

The committee of 24, then reported in 
part, the following Preamble and Bill of 
Rights — 600 copies of which are ordered 
to be printed, and the convention ad- 
journed to 9 o'clock tomorrow morning. 



Mr. P. Edwards as chairman of the 
committee on the Constitution, reported 
the following preamble and BILL 2 OF 
RIGHTS. 

The House directed that 600 copies of 
the above report should be printed, and 
adjourned to Saturday morning. 



Historical Notes, August 28, 1818 

The Convention's rules and orders were adapted from the twenty-two rules adopted by the 
House of Representatives at its May 1818 session: above, p. 106n, 152. Most changes were rou- 
tine, such as the substitution of the president for the speaker as the arbiter of procedures and the 
deletion of articles having to do with specific legislative procedures that were irrelevant to the 
Convention. The tenth rule did away with the House's absolute prohibition on speaking more than 
twice on the same question without permission. The eleventh and eighteenth rules were appar- 
ently added by the drafting committee. The nineteenth was added from the floor, as recorded in 
the Convention's Journal; as Horton ("Annotated Debates," p. 15n) notes, that rule modified the 
legislative resolution (above, p. 43) setting two-thirds as a quorum for the Convention. 

For the printed report on the Preamble and Declaration of Rights, noted just before adjourn- 
ment, see below, pp. 307-9. Assistant clerk Robert Fairchild indicated that a copy had been 
"annexed to the Journal of the Convention & referred to therein." 

Textual Notes on the Debates, August 28, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 1, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 1, 1818. 

1. 108] 103 Journal, Sept. 1, 1818. 

2. BILL] Declaration Times, Sept. 1,1818. 






818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



167 



[Convention Journal, August 29, 1818] 

Saturday August 29th — 

The journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

On motion of Mr. Treadwell, Resolved, that the time to which the conven- 
tion shall be adjourned, be next monday afternoon at 2-o'Clock. — 

The printed copies of the Report of the General Committee, one of which is 
hereto annexed, submitting a preamble and Bill of Rights as aforesaid, were 
distributed to the members, — and the Convention adjourned until monday af- 
ternoon at 2 o'Clock. 

[Convention Debates, August 29, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Saturday Morning, August 29. 

After prayers, and the distribution of 
the bill of rights, the Convention ad- 
journed to Monday at 2 RM. to give time 
to the committee to make a further 
report, and also to deliberate on the sub- 
ject of the Report already made. 



[American Mercury] 

Saturday, 29th. 

The Journal of the House was read, 
and copies of the Preamble, &c. were dis- 
tributed. The House then adjourned to 
Monday afternoon for the purpose of al- 
lowing time to the members to examine 
the report. 



Textual Notes on the Debates, August 29, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 8, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 1, 1818. 



168 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



August 31 



[Convention Journal, August 31, 1818] 

Monday August 31 — 

The Journal was read containing the proceedings of Saturday last the con- 
vention from the commencement of the session to this time. — 

On a motion of Mr. Saml. Hart to take into consideration at this time this af- 
ternoon the Preamble and Bill of Rights reported by the committee on Friday 
last, on a suggestion that the Committee were absent, engaged in preparing a 
further report, it was determined in the negative, 

And the convention adjourned untill tomorrow morning at 9-o'Clock. — 



[Convention Debates, August 31, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Monday, August 31. 

The Convention met at the time ad- 
journed to, and having ascertained that 
no further report would be made by the 
committee today, adjourned to 9 o'clock 
to-morrow morning. 



[American Mercury] 

Monday. Aug. 3 1 . 

Mr. Treadwell inquired whether the 
committee intended at this time to make 
any further report. 

Mr. Root, said, that in the question of 
accepting the report before the House, they 
might agree to the whole Bill of Rights and 
Preamble; or there might be objections to 
particular parts; exceptions to certain arti- 
cles. He thought therefore that it would not 
be proper to act upon it in the absence of 
the committee; and as there was no other 
business before the House, he questioned 
the propriety of proceeding. 

The President then stated; that it was 
not probable the committee would lay in 
any further report this afternoon. A motion 
was made to proceed to the examination of 
the Report made on Friday, but it did not 
prevail. On motion of Mr. Austin, the 
House adjourned to Tuesday morning. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 169 

Historical Notes, August 31, 1818 

Samuel Hart, who introduced an unsuccessful motion on this date, was a delegate from Berlin; he 
had been appointed a justice of the peace for Hartford County in May 1818. He was presumably the 
Samuel Hart, Jr., who had served as a state representative for Berlin a decade earlier and who had 
signed Republican protests during the Embargo crisis of 1808-1809. S.R., XIV, esp. pp. 384, 397. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, August 31, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 8, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 8, 1818. 



170 public records September 1, 

[Convention Journal, September 1, 1818] 
Tuesday September 1st — 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

The Bill of Rights was considered & the general principles discussed — 

The Committee appointed to draft a constitution & submit it to the Conven- 
tion made a further Report upon the Lc comprehending the Legislative & 
Executive Departments, which was read, and, on motion of Mr. Tread well Or- 
dered that 600 copies thereof be printed for the use of the members. — 

On motion of Mr. McLellan the convention proceeded to consider by Sec- 
tions the Preamble & Bill of Rights reported by the Committee — 

The Preamble was first read and approved — 

The eleven first Sections were then read, and, (with the exception of the 5th 
Section which was postponed) amended approved after various amend- 
ments. — As amended & approved they arc as follows viz. — the Preamble and 
the Sections, considered and approved as above stated aforesaid, are as fol- 
lows — to wit — 

Preamble . 

The people of Connecticut acknowledging with gratitude, the good providence 
of God, in having permitted them to enjoy a free government, do, in order more 
effectually to define, secure and perpetuate the liberties rights and privileges 
which they have derived from their ancestors, hereby, after a careful consider- 
ation and revision, ordain and establish the following Constitution and form of 
civil government. — 

Article 1. 



Declaration of Rights 

That the great and essential principles of liberty and free government may be 
recognized and established — 

We declare, 
Sec. 1. That all men when they form a social compact are equal in rights; and 
that no man or set of men are entitled to exclusive public emoluments or privi- 
leges from the community. — 

Sec. 2. That all political power is inherent in the people, and all free govern- 
ments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their benefit, and that 
they have at all times an undeniable and indefeasible right to alter their form of 
government in such manner as they may think expedient. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 1 7 1 

Sec. 3. The exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, with- 
out discrimination, shall forever be free to all persons in this State, provided 
that the right hereby declared and established, shall not be so construed as to 
excuse acts of licentiousness or to justify practices inconsistent with the peace 
and safety of the State. 

Sec. 4. No preference shall be given by law to any christian sect or mode of 
worship. 

Sec. 5 — (Was postponed) on motion of Mr. Treadwell — 
Sec. 6. Every citizen may freely speak, write and publish his sentiments on all 
subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty. 
Sec. 7. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech, or 
of the press. — 

Sec. 8. In all prosecutions or indictments for libels, the truth may be given in 
evidence, and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts, 
under the direction of the Court. 

Sec. 9. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers and posses- 
sions from unreasonable searches or seizures; and no warrant to search any 
place; or to seize any person or things, shall issue, without describing them as 
nearly as may be, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or 
affirmation. 

Sec. 10. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall have a right to be heard 
by himself and counsel; to demand the nature and cause of the accusation; to be 
confronted by the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process to obtain 
witnesses in his favor; and in prosecutions by indictment or information, a 
speedy, public trial, by an impartial jury. He shall not be compelled to give evi- 
dence against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property, but by due 
course of law. And no person shall be holden to answer for any crime, the pun- 
ishment of which may be death or imprisonment for life, unless on a 
presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in the land or naval forces or 
in the militia when in actual service, in time of war, or public danger. 
Sec. 1 1. No person shall be arrested, detained, or punished, except in cases 
clearly warranted by law. — 

And the Convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9-o' Clock. — 



72 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



[Convention Debates, September 1, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Tuesday Morning, Sept. 1. 

Mr. Tread well proposed to throw out 
a few general remarks on the bill of 
rights. A bill had been reported to the 
convention at length. He did not know 
that it could be necessary in its present 
form. If we had to contend with a tyrant, 
or an aristocracy disposed to wrest from 
the people their rights, this declaration 
might be proper and expedient, and even 
necessary; but it was well known, that all 
power is invested in the people, and exer- 
cised by government appointed by the 
people; if it was necessary to make cer- 
tain regulations for that government, 
which should be unalterable, that was 
one thing. Some of the states had made 
such regulations, and confined their leg- 
islatures within such limits, as to prevent 
the enacting of any law on certain sub- 
jects, forever afterwards. If it was 
deemed expedient to make an ordinance 
of the people, and incorporate it into the 
Constitution, he had no objection; it 
could not be improper to settle certain 
points — the people were possessed of 
certain rights, to abridge the power of the 
legislature, and enlarge the power of the 
executive or judiciary; these should be 
incorporated under the several distinct 
heads. For instance — it might be pro- 
vided what the legislature may do, what 
they may not do, and what they shall do; 1 
the powers of the executive & judiciary 
might be enlarged, and the rights of the 
people, to do this, should be incorpo- 
rated under the several distinct heads. 
Such a list of distinct propositions, it was 
improper to pass by themselves; it would 



[American Mercury] 

Tuesday, Sept. 1. — After the journal 
was read, Mr. Treadwell observed, that if 
we were contending with an aristocratic 
body, it might be well to have our rights 
particularly defined. But we know that 
the people have all power. The Constitu- 
tion would be the supreme law of the 
land; and although it might be proper to 
make constitutional provisions on cer- 
tain points, he was inclined to doubt the 
necessity of establishing a full bill of 
rights. The one before the house tended 
to abridge the powers of the people. The 
best mode in acting on this subject, he 
thought would be to take it up under dis- 
tinct heads. For example; let it be stated 
"what the legislature may do — what they 
ought to do, and what they shall do." He 
would not say what the order of proceed- 
ing should be. It might be advisable to go 
into a committee of the whole. We might 
then frame a system which would be 
easily understood by the people. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



173 






be more advantageous, as well as sys- 
tematical, to apportion the rights to be 
incorporated under their distinct heads — 
he was not prepared, however, to say pre- 
cisely what should be the distinct order to 
be taken on the subject. When the whole 
instrument should be reported it could be 
determined. 

Mr. A. Wolcott did not know that any 
question could be laid before the house 
for discussion, but from the nature of the 
business, it became more clear, the more 
he reflected, that they could not be con- 
fined to Rules. The principles of a free 
government were as clear as the revolu- 
tion of the heavenly bodies, that the earth 
revolves 2 round the sun, and not the sun 
round the earth; but at present, gentle- 
men knew nothing of each others notions 
or opinions, and it was impossible that 
this should be the case, unless they were 
communicated — he wished to have them 
communicated, but did not know the pre- 
cise order in which it was best to 
commence the subject; the Convention 
had appointed a Committee of 24 to draft 
a Constitution, and he had no objection 
to the Committee, but then it was neces- 
sary to compare ideas. The Committee 
had made no progress except to report 
the proposition 3 before the house; he was 
willing and should be desirous, and he 
was willing then to make his notions un- 
derstood; he did not know how much it 
was proper then to communicate, but he 
was willing to submit his ideas in writ- 
ing, or he would make some very general 
remarks on the Constitution. The present 
form of government of the state is very 
democratic — he was a democrat, and the 
longer he lived the more he became so, 
and there was nobody on this earth who 
would not subscribe to the principles of 
democracy. In the first place, the people 



Mr. A. Wolcott, said that we could 
not at present be confined to any critical 
rules of parliamentary proceeding. The 
subject under consideration, however, 
was well understood. The principles of a 
Constitution were as well understood as 
was the revolution of the heavenly 
bodies. Gentlemen did not yet appear to 
understand the views and ideas of each 
other. And he thought the only mode of 
effecting this understanding was, to dis- 
cuss the subject in the abstract. It struck 
him now as at first; that the best plan 
would be, to take up the subject by dis- 
tinct propositions and compare them. 
He would endeavor to make his notions 
understood. He would have thrown 
them out in writing, but concluded that 
it would be more decorous to speak. As 
to the system of a Constitution, he said, 
that we have a truly democratic govern- 
ment; and he believed that every one 
would say so. It was one transmitted to 
us from our forefathers. 4 He would 
make no alterations unless some special 
benefit could be derived from them. We 
have enjoyed much liberty under our 
present government, and if there was 
any error, he believed that it was in the 
administration of it. He was opposed to 
multiplying ordinances so as to embar- 
rass the legislature. The virtue of the 
people was our best security. He defied 
any one to erect a tyranny in this coun- 
try, while the people were enlightened; 
and he defied any constitution-maker to 



174 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



would not alter the democracy of their 
government — and in the next, he would 
make no alterations in the present form, 
unless some special benefit could be de- 
rived from it. He differed in many 
respects from certain gentlemen — he did 
not think it so necessary as some to make 
a Constitution; we had a form of govern- 
ment, and if there had been any 
objection, it was not to the form of gov- 
ernment. If the legislature had been 
subject to any errors, it might be well 
enough to limit them, but he would not 
limit them in their ordinary business: the 
legislation 5 returned annually to the 
hands of the people, and the intelligence 
of the people would make proper provi- 
sions, for this subject — without that, a 
Constitution was but paper: he would 
defy a committee to make a Constitution 
which would stand for a moment with a 
people either corrupted or who had not 
intelligence to discern, or preserve their 
freedom: he would fix the tenure of of- 
fices — would regulate the judiciary and 
courts of justice; these subjects it would 
be well to consider: he would define the 
powers of the judiciary, and their num- 
bers, and fix the time of their sitting — 
but these were contingencies which 
could not now be determined. As to reli- 
gion, he would decide that question; 
there should be nothing gross in princi- 
ple inserted in the Constitution; there 
should nothing be inserted, which was 
calculated to create feuds. He had 
thrown out these general remarks, but he 
should want to sit down and write out his 
ideas upon the subject, and reflect upon 
them, but it was unnecessary at this time; 
the bill reported, he considered superflu- 
ous and improper: it seemed more so 
probably to his mind, than to many 
others; he was for erecting a few strong 



preserve liberty by rules on paper. But 
perhaps it was necessary in some mea- 
sure to define what we had. It might be 
well for instance to consider the subject 
of offices; but not in such a manner as to 
descend to particulars; he would not go 
into the organization of Courts, &c. that 
being a proper subject for the legislature. 
With regard to what had been submitted 
in the report; he objected to some things 
because they were not necessary; to 
others because they were uncertain, & to 
some because he deemed them to be su- 
perfluous. It was enough to erect a few 
strong pillars, on which to rear a super- 
structure. There was no danger to be 
apprehended at the present day. from our 
rulers. A legislature that should attempt 
to subvert the liberties of the people, 
would not be re-elected. We might as 
well construct a code of statutes as to 
make a constitution that should embrace 
particulars. For circumstances change 
and the constitution must change with 
them. It would only embarrass the Legis- 
lature. He then took up the Declaration. 
The 12th section he said, provided that, 
"The property of no person shall be 
taken without just compensation there- 
for." This was correct as a general 
principle; but he apprehended that it 
would give rise to some difficulties in its 
operation. The Legislature would proba- 
bly be called upon to lay out highways, 
to direct that a road should pass through 
the land of an individual. In such a case 
there may be a dispute as to what would 
be a just compensation. The public may 
have one opinion on the subject, and the 
individual another. The land in question 
may in fact be of no value, but still the 
owner would require something for it. — 
The 14th section was ineffectual and su- 
perfluous. Because it was left at the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



175 






posts 6 for the defence of liberty — they 
should be few, they should be distinct 
and strong; the legislature cant destroy 
the liberties of the people; that cant be, 
they are elected by them, all power is in 
the people; the right of electing the legis- 
lature is in them, and reverts to them 
every year; this is the great means by 
which the people hold their rights; and 
now should they go on to determine what 
the legislature should do? They might as 
well undertake to make a code of stat- 
utes; the legislature must act agreeably 
to circumstances, which are very liable 
to change; instructions or fixed regula- 
tions, would serve only to embarrass the 
legislature. There was no need of cir- 
cumscribing the power of the legislature, 
they were a part of the people; they must 
frequently return to the people, and this 
fact, would secure their acting in accor- 
dance with the wishes of the people; it 
was impossible for them to perpetuate an 
abuse of power, beyond one election. 
Some sections in the bill of Rights ap- 
peared unexceptionable, but the county 
courts would be forever disputing about 
the constitutionality of certain things; for 
instance, about laying out highways — 
the highway passes through an individu- 
als farm, and however much benefitted 
he might be, the Constitution says he 
must be compensated; here then is a con- 
stitutional question. As to excessive bails, 
he could not well determine what was 
meant by this phrase; no court would ever 
require a bail unless it was just, and if just, 
would not be excessive; that section 
ought not to go into a constitution. 

"No person shall be attainted of trea- 
son, &c." — there could be no advantage 
in adding this section, and he did'nt 
know as it could do any hurt; but as no 
person had ever been attainted, the 



discretion of Courts or Judges, to deter- 
mine what was excessive bail, &c. He 
could not perceive the necessity of the 
10th [i.e., 16th] section. There was 
indeed no danger in passing it. But the 
Legislature had never attainted any 
person, and there was no probability that 
they ever would. — Strange as it may 
seem said Mr. W. — we have derived 
almost all of our ideas on liberty from 
Great Britain. The 17th section he con- 
sidered as an exemplification of this fact. 
He saw no use in making it a part of a 
declaration of rights, "That the People 
might assemble in a peaceable manner to 
apply to their rulers for redress &c." It 
was a right which had never been ques- 
tioned in this country; and he presumed 
never would be. We have no military 
here to overawe the citizens. In England 
when this was the case, a provision like 
that before him might be necessary. But 
whether there was a provision of this 
kind or not it would not effect the right 
acknowledged. If a Legislature should 
attempt to abuse 7 it they would be imme- 
diately displaced. — The section was 
unnecessary and he thought that we 
should not crowd into a constitution an 
article which was not important and es- 
sential. The 19th section would be found 
on experiment to be oftener false than 
true. It would be found sometimes im- 
practicable to enforce it. It might be 
necessary in time of war that martial law 
should be established. But if the words of 
this section should be enforced, it was 
feared that it would produce unpleasant 
collisions between the Military and the 
Civil Authorities. — He did not wish to 
establish a paramount military force 
which should controul the Civil Author- 
ity. He would admit that the latter ought 
to be superior for the purposes of 



176 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



question was whether it was best to in- 
crease the constitution with that kind of 
article; he had no particular objection to 
it, but as no one ever did attaint a person, 
it seemed to be useless. 

"The citizens have a right, in a peace- 
able manner to assemble together, 
&c." — This section had been copied 
from instruments when it was necessary; 
when constitution-making was new, it 
was natural enough to begin by inserting 
provisions of this nature; this was de- 
rived from Great-Britain, at least the 
seeds of it. It was rational enough to look 
and see what others had done — but 
would any legislature undertake to pro- 
hibit the people from assembling in this 
manner, or think it improper for them to 
meet? That was impossible — it never 
had been done, and no legislature would 
begin now — it could not take place. 

"Every citizen has a right to bear 
arms," &c. This is well enough; it's an 
important section. 

"The military shall be in subordina- 
tion to the civil power" — His objection 
to this was, that it would be oftener false 
than true, if the meaning was to extend to 
what the words import. A general is to 
fight a battle — and here's a justice of the 
peace who tells him to arrange the order 
of battle so and so; shall he obey the jus- 
tice? Is that the meaning of the section? 
No — but it would be if the words were 
used as they were here. What then? If the 
laws provide what military or civil offi- 
cers shall do, we must have cases 
defined. Suppose in the army a soldier is 
sentenced to be shot by a court martial, 
shall the civil arms 8 rescue him from the 
military power? If the meaning does not 
extend to this, to what does it extend? 
There was no difficulty in making laws 
against the military, so far as force could 



government; but was unwilling to sub- 
ject the military to the full extent of this 
provision. Suppose that there should be 
an army in Connecticut about to engage 
with an enemy; — He saw no reason, why 
on a fair construction of this section a 
justice of the peace might not interfere in 
its government; and direct, how the gen- 
eral in command should dispose his 
forces. For this might be inferred from 
the fact, that the military must be at all 
times and in all cases in strict subordina- 
tion to the civil power. — We could not 
fore-see what will happen. At New-Or- 
leans during the late war, Gen. Jackson 
found it necessary to silence the Civil 
Authority. This was contrary to law, but 
the safety of the place depended upon it. 
Such cases might again occur. — 

The intention of those who framed the 
20th section, regarding the quartering of 
soldiers &c. was undoubtedly correct. 
But it may be necessary even in peace to 
admit soldiers into private houses, as to 
shelter them from the rain &c. — This 
object was, to avoid any thing that might 
embarrass. In a Constitution he would 
recognize none but great and general 
principles. He would adopt but few. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



177 



be controlled; but he would not make a 
constitutional act. Gen. Jackson silenced 
the civil authority, when it became nec- 
essary to save New-Orleans; he took a 
course in opposition to the civil author- 
ity; he refused to make one 9 of the 
embarrassing means of defence pointed 
out by the legislature; he told the 
Governour to go home, he should not 
allow of his interference; but should be 
responsible for his own conduct, and de- 
clared, if he interfered he should be 
hanged. Now could the Constitution pre- 
vent this? The Constitution had no more 
force in such a case, than a Legislative 
act — and if a legislative act would not 
controul the military, it was not worth 
while to make constitutional provision. 
The meaning could never 10 be defined 
with certainty. 

"No soldier shall ever be quartered, 
&c." — This was right in the main, but 
could not be confined to all cases. In time 
of war, soldiers will quarter themselves, 
and ought to, if it became necessary. He 
had made all these remarks, to show that 
such a list of articles would only serve to 
embarrass the Legislature. That body 
was chosen by the people, and their elec- 
tion returned to the people so often, that 
they would not do what was not agree- 
able to the people — they could not 
control the people, and the convention 
ought therefore to be delicate about em- 
barrassing their rights — opinions were 
constantly changing, and it might be nec- 
essary to change the constitution. 
Perhaps he had trespassed on the conven- 
tion, but he had made those remarks 
generally, in order to show what were 
some of his ideas respecting the Bill of 
Rights: He did not know that his remarks 
were in season. 



178 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



Mr. Austin considered the gentle- 
man's remarks in season, and he was 
glad to hear general remarks from any 
gentleman. It would be improper to take 
up a particular discussion of the Bill of 
Rights in the absence of the committee. 
The convention might find objections 
which the committee could easily obvi- 
ate; still it might not be unprofitable to 
point out those objections. There was an- 
other reason 11 worthy of consideration. 
The necessity of a Bill of Rights, de- 
pends on circumstances. How is the 
legislature to be constituted? If it was to 
be elected for the year, there was more 12 
necessity for a Bill of Rights, than if the 
government returned to the people once 
in six months. In that case, little need be 
said about a Bill of Rights; the people 
had rights enough. The time could not be 
spent more profitably, than in general re- 
marks, and he wished to have the 
observations of other gentlemen. 

Judge Mitchell thought 1 ' it was 
always best in a public body, to have 
some question before the house that 
brings the subject to a point: general re- 
marks, made at random, do nothing: 
gentlemen might go on with their gen- 
eral remarks forever, and accomplish 
nothing: they would not ascertain the 
sentiments of the Convention; some 
members were too modest to throw out 
their ideas on general subjects — besides, 
it was not bringing the matter to a point; 
it was like the clergyman's entering his 
pulpit and forgetting his text — he wished 
the motion to be made from the Chair, or 
some other quarter, and the question to 
be taken, whether the articles contained 
in the Bill of Rights shall now be taken 
up; if not, the house might as well ad- 
journ. He thought they ought to be taken 
up separately, altho' as he had said the 



Mr. Austin, coincided with the gentle- 
man last up as to the propriety of taking a 
general view of the subject at this time. 
But did not think that it would be proper 
to act on the report during the absence of 
the committee. 



Judge Mitchel. observed you may go 
on forever without coming to any conclu- 
sion; unless there is something definite 
before us. Gentlemen did not seem to 
know what they were speaking of: — they 
had no object in view. He wished that 
some motion might be presented on which 
the House could act. — The question was 
then put — whether the House would at this 
time proceed to examine the report; and 
decided in the negative. 



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79 



other day, he still doubted the propriety 
of having a Bill of Rights: but as they had 
appointed a committee of 24, and as that 
committee had seen fit to report a bill, he 
considered his own opinion as overruled. 
He was against the Bill of Rights, for he 
would not undertake to tell the people 
their rights — they could not be enumer- 
ated; he would tell them their power and 
have them keep their rights in their own 
hands. The Constitution is to guard 
against power, and is to the Legislature 
no more than the power of attorney to an 
individual agent. The Legislature is the 
people's agent, and it was sufficient for 
the people to say what they will have 
under their control; when they had done 
that, they had done enough; he would not 
enumerate all his powers to his agent; he 
would say, go and take care of this piece 
of property, but I have much property be- 
sides. Rhode-Island had reserved ten 
powers, Massachusetts 30, and some 
states, as South-Carolina and New- York, 
had enumerated none, 14 and he believed 
for wise purposes. What is limited to the 
legislature, he would so express in the 
constitution. A Bill of Rights has not the 
authority of a Constitution unless incor- 
porated: is the bill to be incorporated in 
the Constitution? if not, it has no legal, 
binding effect. Congress, the second 
year after it was established, voted to 
amend the Constitution, by providing 
that all power not given to themselves, 
should be reserved to the several states — 
he wished it to be decided, whether they 
should take up the first report. Here 
Judge Root proceeded to make some 
general remarks, when the Committee 
entered, and submitted the following fur- 
ther report — 600 copies of which were 
ordered to be printed. 



Judge Root — When we view govern- 
ment and trace it to is source; we shall 
find that, the Almighty is the author of 
all government. He has established rules 
necessary to the happiness of man, but 
being in a state of depravity we disregard 
them. Hence the necessity of civil 



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September 1 



government to restrain us. In a Republic 
the supreme power is vested in the 
people; and they delegate it as they 
please. A pure Republic is that, in which 
the people govern themselves. The next 
grade of the same kind of government is 
that in which the people invest represen- 
tatives with this authority. — This is a 
Democracy — it is the government which 
was established by our fathers and has 
been transmitted to us. Under it we have 
been since the year 1639 a happy and 
prosperous people. Oh! could our fore- 
Fathers; — how would they look down 
and shed tears — and rejoice to see the 
happiness that has flowed from it. — 
Here are the freemen, — They elect men 
to govern them. — They serve and go out 
of office. The question is asked; who 
shall we appoint again. — The men who 
have done well. The people love them 
and could not turn them out even after 
they had become superannuated; and 
they love the people. Now shall we 
change our course? 

All rights are in the people; and if we 
define some it is saying that we surrender 
those which are not defined. A Bill of 
Rights might be necessary under the Eng- 
lish government, where the inherent 
privileges 15 of the people were not so well 
understood, or were not acknowledged, but 
here, he thought that it was unnecessary. 

Judge Edwards as Chairman of the 
Committee then presented the following 
Report in part. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



Mr. M'Clellan moved that the first 
report be taken up by paragraphs — Voted. 

Mr. Treadwell thought it might be 
made a question, whether they should 
have a Bill of Rights; for his part, he 
wished to keep all rights in the hands of 
the people; they had no power, no kings, 
and no aristocrats to contend with, the 
power was their own, and he wished the 
question to be settled now, whether it 
was necessary to proceed by passing a 
list of ordinances. If it was thought ad- 
visable to pass certain ordinances to 
regulate the Legislative, Executive, and 
Judicial departments, he had no objec- 
tion, but he would have them 
incorporated under their distinct heads; 
the Constitution would have no power 
until passed by the people, and when rat- 
ified by them it would become the 
supreme law of the land — they should 
pass the ordinances, and should make 
them a part of the Constitution. 

Mr. Lanman moved to proceed by 
taking up, considering and acting upon 
the preamble of the Constitution — Voted. 

Judge Mitchell had no objections to 
the Preamble; he liked it well. The only 
objection with him, was, as to the time of 
adopting it, he was willing to approve of 
this Preamble, but to say that he would 
adopt the Constitution, which might 
follow, it was what he could not do — 
there appeared to him a manifest impro- 
priety in saying that "we ordain and 
establish, the following Constitution and 
form of civil government" before a Con- 
stitution had been even submitted to the 
Convention. In vulgar language, it was 
much like putting the Cart before the 
horse; he considered it better to proceed 
to consider the remainder of the bill, and 
let the preamble come in after the instru- 
ment should be formed. Suppose the 



On motion of Mr. Mc'Lellan, the 
house proceeded to examine the Decla- 
ration and Bill of Rights by paragraphs. 



182 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



Convention were to vote for this and then 
reject the Constitution; in the preamble he 
would have voted to adopt the Constitu- 
tion, and on the final question, to reject 
it — for this reason, he considered it an im- 
proper time to approve the Preamble. 

Mr. N. Smith, wished to proceed in 
this way because all others had done so 
in like cases. He believed it to be the uni- 
versal rule, when a bill was reported, by 
a committee, to take it up by paragraphs; 
each paragraph was open to arguments, 
and gentlemen on discussion, had a right 
to adopt, or reject it in toto — the minds 
of the Convention could not well be 
brought to a point, unless they should 
proceed in this manner. Although he 
might approve of a particular section, or 
an individual article — he considered 
himself under no obligation to vote for 
the whole — but perhaps gentlemen 
might be willing to vote for the whole, 
with one or two exceptions, and how 
could these be made, unless they should 
proceed in the manner proposed; how 
could objections to particular articles be 
made, unless those articles were taken up 
separately? He was not intimately ac- 
quainted with proceedings of this nature, 
but as opinions might be different on dif- 
ferent articles, he wished the bill to be 
gone through with by taking up each arti- 
cle separately, and when done, the 
Convention would have a right to reject, 
or approve the whole altogether. It was 
certainly of importance to take up the 
subject right from the beginning. 

Mr. Lanman, moved that the pream- 
ble be approved and adopted. 

Mr. Treadwell, considered the time of 
no importance — if no Constitution 
should be adopted, the preamble would 
fall through of course; if a Constitution 
should be adopted, the only question was 



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183 



whether this was a proper introduction — 
unanimously approved. 

The house now proceeded to the con- 
sideration of article 1st, and section 1st. 

Mr. Treadwell, moved to strike out 
the word separate from section 1st. His 
objection to the word in that place was, 
that it had no meaning: the sentence was 
more complete without it, and he would 
not have a word in the constitution, 
which had not a meaning and an appro- 
priate meaning. — Amended. 

Mr. A. Wolcott, had an objection to 
the first section; he did not know how the 
gentlemen would construe it; he was not 
capable of saying what was the precise 
meaning of it; but if he understood it, the 
latter clause of the section should be 
stricken out — "And that no man, or set of 
men, are entitled to exclusive public 
emoluments or privileges from the com- 
munity." Now are the Convention 
prepared to say, that no man or set of 
men is entitled to separate privileges? 
this principle would comprehend all 
banking companies and all corporations; 
are not banking companies, sets of men? 
have they not exclusive privileges? all 
corporations and manufacturing compa- 
nies have, and if the words of the 
paragraph go to countenance the idea 
that they have not, he was not prepared to 
agree to it; on this ground he wished the 
section to be struck out. He would there- 
fore move that the section be struck out; 
as it stood, there was some doubt in the 
words, and he would not have a doubt in 
the constitution. 

Mr. N. Smith considered the gentle- 
man's motion to be out of order; if the 
section did not pass, it would be because 
there would not be votes enough; but to 
move to strike it out could not in his view 
be in order. 



84 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



Mr. Lanman made some remarks, and 
the motion for striking out was negatived. 

Mr. Treadwell then moved to erase 
the word "General" from article 1st 
which was done, and the 1st section was 
approved and accepted. 

Section 2. — Mr. Treadwell moved to 
strike out the words, "undeniable and" 
which motion after some debate was 
negatived, and the section, as reported, 
approved and adopted. 

Section 3d was now read, and the 
convention adjourned to 2 o'clock P.M. 

Afternoon. — Mr. Treadwell re- 
marked, that all sects of religion should 
be tolerated in this State. He had no ob- 
jection to the article, but was willing 
there should be universal toleration. Pa- 
pists, Mahommedans. Jews, or Hindoos, 
should be allowed to meet together and 
tolerated; all should be tolerated agree- 
ably to the article; and no force should be 
used against them, unless to prevent acts 
of disturbance. He had no objection to an 
article of this kind. — Unanimously ap- 
proved and accepted. 

Section 4th. "No preference shall be 
given to any religious sect, or mode of 
worship." 

Mr. Morse wished to erase this sec- 
tion, and substitute the following, viz. 
"That rights of conscience are unalien- 
able; that all persons have a natural & 
indefeasable [sic] right to worship Al- 
mighty God, according to their own 
consciences; and no person shall be 
compelled to attend any place of worship 
or contribute to the support of any minis- 
ter, contrary to his own choice. ["] 

Mr. T. Pitkin begged leave to read the 
statute on that subject; which done, Mr. 
Morse replied those were rights which 
they had never asked for — all they 



1818 



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85 



wished, was the privilege of managing 
their own concerns in their own way. 

Mr. Treadwell was willing this sub- 
ject should be taken up, but doubted the 
propriety of taking it up in this place. 

Mr. Edwards concurred with the gen- 
tleman from Farmington [John 
Treadwell] — he was willing to take up this 
subject, not now; so important a principle 
should not be left to the Legislature, but he 
would secure every thing. — motion to sub- 
stitute negatived. 

Mr. Treadwell, wished to move one 
amendment to the 4th section, which 
would render it unexceptionable to all 
parties; he was not ashamed of our reli- 
gion, or mode of worship; our religion 
came from God, it was the Christian reli- 
gion: and he knew it to be the power of 
God unto salvation; he would not change 
the object of worship; he had no idea of 
setting up Jupiter Ammon, or Mahomed, 
or Confucius, or any other heathen God, 
as a proper object of worship; nor would 
he substitute any other worship for that 
of Jesus Christ, the present mode should 
not be changed; and here he hoped it 
would be understood that he had nothing 
personal in view — that he was expecting 
no office and no emolument, but being 
called upon to act as a member of this 
Convention, he had a duty to discharge; 
that duty should be conscientiously dis- 
charged, and he should not be 
accountable for any consequences which 
might result from the Constitution. He 
was not prepared to place Jesus Christ on 
a par with false Gods, and would there- 
fore move, that the word "religious" be 
erased, and the word "Christian" substi- 
tuted — so that the Section would read, 
"no preference shall be given, by law to 
any Christian sect. &c." He was willing 
that all should enjoy equal privileges — 



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PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1, 



that no preference should be given by 
law to any Christian sect — but that in 
point of law all should be equal — substi- 
tuting the word Christian for Religious 
he thought removed the ambiguity and 
would render the section acceptable to 
all — as it stood the section might be con- 
strued to mean, that no preference should 
be given to the Christian religion above 
any other, but he was not prepared to say, 
that the Christian religion should not be 
ranked above any other. 16 

Mr. A. Wolcott, said he could not find 
that he had any ideas of his own on this 
subject, but he found some difficulty in 
settling what the gentleman would mean, 
or what was intended by the amendment; 
was it intended to exclude Jews or 
Mahomedans, or any other religious 
sect? If the section was designed to place 
them all on a footing, well — but unless 
that were the case, he was prepared to 
say that Religion was not an affair of 
State. The Convention or the Legislature 
had nothing to do with the subject; it 
become [sic] necessary to alter the 
phraseology of the laws, he could not see 
that they had power to frame such laws, 
there should be no distinction between 
Jew or Gentile. 

Mr. Edwards, declared himself in 
favour of the amendment, he agreed with 
the Hon. Gentleman from Farmington 
[John Treadwell], that no preference 
should be given to any religious sect; he 
was willing the Legislature should toler- 
ate Jews and Mahommedans, at the same 
time, there had never been any in the 
state, and probably never would be; but if 
there should, the amendment would not 
infringe their privileges and he was 
therefore in favour of it. 

Mr. Lanman remarked at some 
length, and the question on the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



187 



amendment was carried on the section as 
amended. 

Mr. A. Wolcott remarked, that he no 
doubt was as anxious to promote the in- 
terests of the state as any man, but he was 
opposed to the section; It was not proper 
to say that any other religion was equal 
to the Christian religion, nor was it 
proper to say that any other religion was 
not equal to it; it was altogether a mis- 
taken idea, that any thing should be done 
on the subject; why compel a man to sup- 
port any religious sect? the question was 
coming to this, and he would ask of what 
use it could be[?] it is said that religion is 
the foundation of good morals; what are 
good morals? we are not indebted to the 
Christian religion for them; all the vir- 
tues have been inculcated by Pagans, and 
he would have the law the same, as it re- 
gards both Christians and Pagans; he 
would have no difference. Why enforce 
religious instruction, because it will 
bring many to embrace religion; what re- 
ligion? the Christian religion — which 
sect? which inculcates truth or false- 
hood? each sect will say mine, and each 
will undertake to supplant the other. If it 
is not right to compel a person to em- 
brace the truth, is it right to compel him 
to embrace falsehood? he would have no 
laws upon the subject, laws were not 
necessary to support falsehood, and no 
religion could be useful which was be- 
lieved to be false. We seek to know 
which sect embraces the truth, and all 
dogmas are either true or false; but don't 
say if you wont support truth, you shall 
support falsehood — truth can't be dem- 
onstrated, there were different opinions 
and all could not be true: as it respects so- 
ciety, it was of no importance what a man 
believes concerning a future state; it was 
conduct which was of consequence to the 



188 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



community; on this ground he was un- 
willing to do any thing about it. 

Mr. Treadwell said, if he understood 
the gentleman's argument, he had been 
considering the question, whether it is 
proper to support religion by law, which 
was not the question before the house; it 
might be proper to discuss that question 
some other time, but at present, it was the 
question whether the article under consid- 
eration, should be inserted in the Bill of 
Rights; any other question had nothing to 
do with the subject, the Convention had 
only to determine now, whether any dis- 
tinction should be made by law between 
different denominations of Christians. 

Mr. N. Smith declared himself in 
favour of the section: its provision was 
consistent with the principles of Justice, 
it was also consistent with the third arti- 
cle, which tolerates the free exercise and 
enjoyment of religious profession and 
worship, by all religious denominations, 
without discrimination. Would it not be 
free to allow him the free enjoyment of 
his own peculiar mode of worship, and at 
the same time allow the like privileges to 
others? without the provision contained 
in section fourth, you may establish one 
denomination by law, and leave all 
others unprotected; but this declares that 
no preference shall be given by law, to 
any denomination of Christians — and 
without this, how can we proceed to leg- 
islate with perfect equality? the question 
is not whether any religious sect be 
wrong or right, but whether all denomi- 
nations of Christians shall enjoy equal 
privileges. The people of Connecticut 
are all Christians; their modes of wor- 
ship are various, and it is of peculiar 
importance that each should be pre- 
served. The principle contained in the 
fourth section was a fundamental 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



189 



principle, it did not need an argument for 
its support, and it could not be desirable 
to go extensively into the question; were 
not this principle adopted, the different 
denominations would look at each other 
with a jealous eye. This ought not to be. 
He was willing for one, to vest in the 
Legislature supreme power on this sub- 
ject; it was consistent with the idea, that 
one Christian denomination should not 
be built up at the expense of another; it 
was not inconsistent for a society to pay 
no tax, but if he wished to join a society 
which was disposed to pay taxes, he 
ought to have that privilege, and the leg- 
islature ought to have the power of 
regulating this subject: without this, the 
Constitution would be unwarrantably 
defective. 

Mr. D. Burrows, did not agree with 
the gentleman from New-Haven [Nathan 
Smith] — he could not agree that the leg- 
islature have a right to make laws on this 
subject — if they had, he had always been 
in an error concerning it. In the first place 
he doubted the power altogether — if they 
had power to legislate on the subject, 
they had power to legislate on matters of 
conscience — he was altogether opposed; 
but he was not opposed to the question on 
the 4th section, if it amounted to a reli- 
gious test, that no man should hold an 
office who did not embrace the Christian 
religion; if that was the idea, he had no 
objection — but if it was designed to give a 
right to legislate on religious concerns, he 
was still more opposed. 

Mr. Stow remarked, that this question 
had been agitated ever since his memory, 
and he conceived this to be the only true 
ground, that the legislature have a right 
to legislate on all subjects relating to this 
world — if they step off of the ground at 
all, and presume to legislate on the 



190 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1, 



subject of religion, they carry the matter 
too far. Christ's kingdom was not of this 
world, and all had a right to worship in 
their own way. If the people are disposed 
to make regulations to build houses, or to 
pay taxes, they have a right, but, that the 
legislature have a right to make laws on 
this subject he denied. He believed that 
the Christian religion disowns any such 
right. Look at our neighboring states, 
N.York, New-Jersey, and others — their 
government is founded on religion as 
well as ours — there the legislature did 
not interfere in religious concerns. Look 
at Massachusetts, where the legislature 
has interfered, and you find nothing but 
constant petitioning — the same is the 
case in England, where they have an es- 
tablished religion — it would be a radical 
error if this subject should not be put at 
rest — he doubted whether the Constitu- 
tion could be carried into effect, until 
this subject should be entirely put at rest. 

It was then motioned to amend the 
4th section by adding the following 
clause: "Nor shall any person be com- 
pelled to attend any place of public 
worship, or maintain any minister, with- 
out his consent and approbation," — which 
did not pass. The 4th section as reported, 
was then approved and adopted. 

The consideration of Sec. 5th on 
motion of Mr. Treadwell, was post- 
poned, until the Constitution should be 
formed. 

Sec. 6. — Mr. A. Wolcott, thought this 
Sec. rather too well defined — "every cit- 
izen may freely speak, write and publish 
his sentiments on all subjects," but 
"being responsible for that privilege^"] 
there 17 was not a power in Europe that 
had a law like this. You may speak free 
and write freely; but you must suffer the 
consequences; he would have the article 



OF CONNECTICUT 



91 



amended by leaving out "being responsi- 
ble for the abuse of that liberty." 

Mr. Tread well, would leave out all the 
article — he considered the whole purpose 
of it answered in the next section. 

Mr. Bristol, could not agree with gen- 
tlemen, that the article was of no 
importance. Every citizen has the liberty 
of speaking and writing his sentiments 
freely, and it should not be taken away 
from him; there was a very great distinc- 
tion between taking away a privilege, 
and punishing for an abuse of it — to take 
away the privilege, is to prevent a citizen 
from speaking or writing his senti- 
ments — it is like appointing censors of 
the press, who are to revise before publi- 
cation — but in the other case, every thing 
may go out, which the citizen chooses to 
publish, though he shall be liable for 
what he does publish — we are not to 
adopt the principles of a Star Chamber- 
Court, the Sec. was important; it was the 
very one which he wished to see incorpo- 
rated. — Some further remarks were made 
by Mr. Bristol, and Mr. Pitkin, and the Sec. 
was approved and accepted. 

Sec. 7th. — No law shall ever be passed 
to curtail the liberty of speech, or of the 
press. 

Mr. A. Wolcott, moved to amend the 
Sec. by adding "and no prosecution for 
libel, shall be sustained, as a public of- 
fence." As the sects of men stand, the 
publisher may be constantly vexed with 
public prosecutions, which shall subject 
him to trouble and expense undeservedly. 

After some remarks by Mr. Smith, the 
Sec. was approved and accepted. — Sec- 
tions 8 and 9 were approved and accepted 
without amendment — Sec. 10th. Mr. A. 
Smith, moved to strike out the words, "by 
an impartial Jury" which was done. 



192 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



Mr. Fairchild, moved to amend the 
Sec. by adding "and no person shall be 
holden to answer for a crime, the punish- 
ment of which may be death or 
imprisonment for life, unless on the pre- 
sentment or indictment of a grand jury, 
except in the land or naval forces, or in 
the militia when in actual service in time 
of war or public danger." — Amended, 
and the Sec. accepted and approved, with 
one or two verbal alterations. — Sec. 1 1 th 
was amended, so as to read "no person 
shall be ar[r]ested. detained or punished, 
except in cases, clearly warranted by 
law.["] — Adjourned to 9 o'clock 
tomorrow mornina. 



After much dissultory [sic] debate, 
for which we have not room, all but the 
5th and 22d sections, 18 the first being 
postponed and the latter erased, the Dec- 
laration of Rights was accepted and 
approved with the following amend- 
ments. — The word "general" in the first 
sentence of the Declaration was ex- 
punged; and the word "separate" in the 
1st Sec. — The word Christian was sub- 
stituted for "religious" in the 4th Sec. 
The 10th Sec. was amended by adding 
the following: 

"No person shall be holden to answer 
for any crime, the punishment of which 
may be death, or imprisonment for life; 
unless on the presentment or indictment 
of a grand jury; except in the land or 
naval forces, or in the militia when in 
actual service, in time of war or public 
danger." The 1 1th was made to read thus. 
"No person shall be arrested, detained or 
punished, except in cases clearly war- 
ranted by law." 

The 13th was amended by striking 
out the words "lands and goods" so as to 
read "persons property &c." To the 15th 
these words were added, "nor in any case 
but by the Legislature." In the 17th the 
word "together" was erased. Judge 
Mitchell offered an amendment — re- 
serving to the people powers not 
delegated; which laid on the Table with- 
out opposition. — Adjourned. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 193 



Historical Notes, September 1, 1818 

The only new speaker appearing on September 1 was Asahel Morse of Suffield, a Baptist minis- 
ter who introduced an unsuccessful amendment that would even more forcefully have secured 
religious rights: see above, p. 1 84. Although this day was taken up by consideration of the Preamble 
and Declaration of Rights, the Convention's Journal also noted the presentation of the drafting com- 
mittee's report on the legislative and executive departments, for which see below, pp. 310-18. 

The newspaper debates on this date referenced a few specific matters. In his long morning 
speech, Alexander Wolcott alluded to the customary right of assembly in England. He also men- 
tioned Andrew Jackson's actions around the time of the Battle of New Orleans in 1814-1815, 
when he proclaimed martial law, briefly dispersed the Louisiana legislature, and clashed with the 
courts. Hickey, War of 1812, p. 213; Robert V. Remini, Andrew Jackson: The Course of Empire, 
1767-1821 (Baltimore and London, 1998), pp. 257, 308-315. Also in the morning session, Stephen 
Mix Mitchell referred to the arrangements for bills of rights — or the lack thereof — in four states and 
mentioned the Tenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which explicitly reserved to the states 
powers not granted to the national government. The Declaration of Rights in the Massachusetts 
Constitution of 1780 indeed contained thirty articles; while the current constitutions of New York 
(1777) and South Carolina (1790) did not include bills of rights as separate sections or articles, they 
spelled out many customary rights within their frames of government. Rhode Island, like Connecti- 
cut, operated under its colonial charter after Independence; it did not write a new constitution until 
1842. Thorpe, Constitutions, III, 1889-93; V, 2623ff; VI, 321 Iff, 3264. 

In the afternoon, Timothy Pitkin presumably read the May 1817 act securing rights and privi- 
leges to Christian denominations (S.R., XVIII, 179-0, 179n) in response to Asahel Morse's 
proposed amendment. In his speech later in the day Joshua Stow referenced religious arrange- 
ments in New Jersey and New York, where the state constitutions of 1776 and 1777, while in no 
way hostile to Christian religion, prohibited religious establishments and provided for freedom of 
conscience. The legislative interference and petitioning that Stow noted in Massachusetts un- 
doubtedly resulted from the fact that the state continued to authorize public financial support for 
religion until disestablishment by constitutional amendment in 1833. Thorpe, Constitutions, III, 
1889-90; V, 2597-98, 2636-37. In regard to the discussion of the tenth section of the draft decla- 
ration of rights, Wesley Horton points out that there was no 'A. Smith" in the Convention; the 
Smiths present were Nathan and Chester; he also notes that the words "by an impartial jury" were 
not in fact struck from the final Constitution: "Annotated Debates," p. 3 In. The language added 
to that section on Robert Fairchild's motion echoes the Fifth Amendment to the U. S. Constitu- 
tion. The last paragraph of the Mercury's account summarizes some actions that, according to the 
Convention's Journal, took place on the next day, September 2. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 1, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 8, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 8, 1818. 

1. shall do] shall not do Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

2. revolves] moves Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

3. proposition] propositions Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

4. forefathers] fathers Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

5. legislation] legislature Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

6. posts] forts Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

7. abuse] abridge Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 



194 public records September 1-2, 

8. arms] arm Mirror, Sept. 7, 1818. 

9. one] use Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

10. never] now Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

1 1. reason] measure Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

12. more] no more Journal, Sept. 8, 1818. 

13. thought] very properly observed Register, Sept. 26, 1818. 

14. none] more Journal. Sept. 8, 1818. We agree with Horton, "Annotated Debates," p. 22n, 
that "more" is perhaps a better reading than "none," since South Carolina and New York included 
many rights in their frames of government. 

15. privileges] priviliges Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

16. In a summary of the enusing debate, the Register (Sept. 26, 1818) noted that "gentlemen 
properly questioned the right of earthly powers to make laws in regard to religion, or to make dis- 
criminations between Jews and Gentiles, &c." 

17. there] these Courant; emended from the Mirror, Sept. 7, 1818. 

18. sections,] sections in Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 195 

[Convention Journal, September 2, 1818] 

Wednesday September 2d — 

The Journal was read, containing the proceedings of yesterday — 
Two letters were communicated to the convention through the President, 
from Messrs. H. C. Flagg, and S. Converse requesting to be admitted upon the 
floor of the House for the purpose of taking sketches of the proceedings & de- 
bates, and on motion of Mr. McLellan it was resolved that they be admitted; & 
they were admitted accordingly — 

The convention proceeded to consider by sections, the remaining twelve 
part of the Bill of Rights reported by their committee, being the twelve last sec- 
tions, which were read in order, and various amendments were proposed and 
adopted, & the 22d Section was expunged — The rest were approved, as 
amended, and are in the following words — viz. — 

Sec. 12 . The property of no person shall be taken for public use without just 
compensation therefor. — 

Sec. 13 . All courts shall be open, and every person for an injury done him in his 
person, property or reputation, shall have remedy, by due course of law, and 
right and justice administered without sale, denial or delay. — 
Sec. 14 . Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed. 
Sec. 15 . All prisoners shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sure- 
ties, except for capital offences, where the proof is evident, or the presumption 
great; and the privilege of the writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, 
unless when in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may require it; 
nor, in any case, but by the legislature. 

Sec. 16 . No person shall be attainted of treason or felony by the legislature. 
Sec. 17 . The citizens have a right in a peaceable manner to assemble for their 
common good, and to apply to those invested with the powers of government, 
for redress of grievances, or other proper purposes, by petition, address or 
remonstrance. 

Sec. 18 . Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defence of himself, and the State. 
Sec. 19 — The military shall, in all cases, and at all times be in strict subordina- 
tion to the civil power. 

Sec. 20 . No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house, without 
the consent of the owner; nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by 
law. — 

Sec. 21. No hereditary emoluments, privileges or honors shall ever be granted 
or conferred in this State. 



196 public records September 2, 

Sec. 22. The right of trial by jury, shall remain inviolate 
A 23d Section was proposed by Mr. Mitchel, concerning a reservation to the 
people of all rights not delegated by the convention &c, and, on motion of Mr. 
Pitkin, it was ordered to lie on the table. — 

Mr. Treadwell offered two Sections to be inserted in the constitution, the 
object of one of which is to prevent any person concerned in a duel from hold- 
ing any office and to deprive him of the right of voting for public officers, and 
the object of the other is to define the qualifications of freemen electors hereaf- 
ter to be admitted and to provide that they should possess such qualifications at 
the time of voting, or not be entitled to vote; both which were ordered to lie on 
the table — 

The 2nd Report of the Committee was taken up relating to the " Distribution 
of Powers " and to the " Legislative and Executive Departments , ["] and the con- 
vention proceeded to consider the same by sections — 

The printed copies of said Report were distributed to the members, — one of 
which is hereto annexed. — 

The convention decided to consider the Sections separately in order, with- 
out taking any vote upon them at this time of reading, except on such 
amendments as should be offered. 

Sundry amendments were offered, but were ordered before any vote was 
taken on them, they were ordered to lie on the table, except one amendment 
striking out the words " of State " in the 1 st line of the 6th Section of the 3d Arti- 
cle, and in other places where " of State " was used after " Secretary. " 

The convention proceeded in that way accordingly , through the 2nd and 3d 
Articles , comprehending the "Distribution of Powers" & the "Legislative 
Department" 

and adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9-oClock. 

[Convention Debates, September 2, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courani] 

Wednesday Morning, September 2. 

The further consideration of the Bill of 
Rights was taken up, and sections 12, 13, 
14, 15, 16, 17 and 18, were approved and 
accepted, with slight verbal alterations. 

Sec. 19. Mr. Fairchild moved to 
amend the section by striking out the 
words, "in all cases and at all times," and 
insert so that the section would read, 



[American Mercury] 

Wednesday Sept. 2d. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



197 



"The military shall be in subordination 
to the civil power." 

Mr. A. Wolcott liked the amendment; it 
was impossible that the military should at 
all times be in subordination to the civil 
power, especially in time of war; to be sure 
he had no wish to be under military power, 
but he had stated his ideas on the subject 
before — the section was now expressed in 
general terms, and he liked it much better. 

Mr. T. Pitkin would not amend the 
section — it was very well as it is; there 
was nothing in it which even contra- 
vened the principle, that in time of war 
we might be under martial law — there 
was no danger but the military would 
always have sufficient power. He could 
mention when the Habeas Corpus Act 
had been suspended by a military decree; 
and although the constitution of the U. 
States declares that that act shall be pre- 
served inviolate, it has been suspended 
in two instances by military power. If 
there was any danger, it was that the mili- 
tary power would be too great; there 
could be no danger that it would not be 
sufficiently great. In one instance, which 
he need not name, it had imprisoned a 
Judge for an attempt to discharge the 
duties of his office; it therefore became 
important that such an article should be 
incorporated in the constitution; it is nec- 
essary to protect the citizen from 
military oppression. If a military officer 
takes a citizen from his friends and em- 
ployment without his consent, or 
violates his rights in any other way, he 
shall be liable to the law for his conduct. 
Numerous were the instances of such vi- 
olations during the last war, and 
damages were recovered by the citizens 
for a violation of their rights. — It is a 
sound principle, that at "all times, and in 
all cases," the military must be in 



198 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 2, 



subordination to the civil power — he 
would have it in "strict" subordination, 
and would not consent to alter the 
phraseology, of the section. 

The Section was approved as reported. 

The remaining sections contained in 
the bill of rights were approved without 
amendment. 

Judge Mitchell proposed to amend 
the bill by adding the following 24th sec- 
tion: "Powers not delegated to the 
legislative body by this constitution, or 
prohibited by it, are reserved to the 
people; and the enumeration of certain 
rights, in the above, shall not be con- 
strued by implication, to deny others 
retained by the people." 

After some discussion the consider- 
ation of the amendment was postponed, 
and the bill ordered to lie on the table. 

Mr. N. Terry then offered after a re- 
consideration of the vote on the 15th 
section, the following amendment, to 
follow the word great in the second line: 
But in any prosecution for a capital of- 
fence, where the proof is not evident, nor 
the presumption great, the prisoner may 
be bailed by the court, having cogni- 
zance of the offence, or any judge 
thereof, upon a writ of habeas corpus, to 
be brought for that purpose, and not oth- 
erwise. — Rejected. 



Mr. Treadwell begged leave to pro- 
pose as an appendage to the Bill of 
Rights some amendments which he enti- 
tled "ordinances or laws of perpetual 
obligation" one of which provided for 
the qualifications of electors, another 
was intended to prevent duelling; but it 
being suggested by Mr. Fairchild, that 
the committee would probably provide 
for the qualifications of freemen and by 
Mr. North and others that the crime of 



18 



OF CONNECTICUT 



99 



Other amendments were proposed 
and made which it is not necessary now 
to give, if it were practicable. We have 
detailed the remarks on the principal 
amendments proposed to the Bill of 
Rights, because the Convention had not 
come to the important, and perhaps, dis- 
putable questions. 



Duelling was a proper subject for legis- 
lation; "the ordinances were postponed." 



On motion of Mr. Butler the 2d 
Report was taken up in the absence of the 
Committee, with an understanding that 
no final vote should be taken upon it al- 
though amendments might be made. 

On the 1st [i.e., 2nd] Article. Mr. 
Fairchild observed, that the division of 
the several powers of government as de- 
fined in the provisions of 1st and 2d 
sections, met with his approbation. The 
building 1 of these different departments 
had been an evil in our present system. 
The provision here made, was one to 
which we had been long and gradually 
approaching. Formerly the General As- 
sembly exercised judicial powers, then 
the Governor and Council constituted a 
Court of errors, acting at the same time 
in capacity of Judges and Legislators. 
The embarras[s]ments resulting from 
this organization gave rise to our present 
supreme Court. — He would not in a case 
of so great importance adopt any plan 
which had not received the sanction of 
experience. The one before us had been 
approved and adopted by almost every 
other State in the Union and was found to 
be safe in practice. The principle which 
it contained had after great deliberation 
been recognized in this State by the Con- 
vention which adopted the Constitution 
of the United States, and had by all 



200 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 2, 



politicians of the age been considered as 
one of the best safe-guards of liberty. 

Mr. Treadwell; said, that he had his 
doubts upon the subject. He would not 
say that the provision was a wrong one. It 
rendered the Executive a distinct and in- 
dependent branch. Whether in this 
respect we should depart from the princi- 
ples of our old Constitution; was an 
important consideration, and ought not 
to be passed over in a slight manner. The 
power of a negative which was by this 
Report vested in the Executive, was a 
very high one. The Governor may indeed 
be a man of talents and may in most 
cases decide correctly. But we could not 
be assured that he always would. — He 
was not at present prepared to act upon 
this subject — He was well satisfied with 
the government as it had existed. The 
Governor had always been a constituent 
part of the Council. He thought that the 
Council was a very happy house to do 
business in. He had formerly the honor 
of sitting in that body and they deliber- 
ated in a familia[r] way. — After a few 
curso[r]y remarks in opposition to the 
distribution of powers. From 2 Messrs. 
Root and McLellan, the house proceeded 
to the consideration of the 3d article. The 
2d section was opposed by Messrs. H. 
Terry, Root and Austin on the ground of 
its providing for but one session in a 
year, and by Mr. A. Wolcott because — 
He considered, the places of holding the 
sessions of the Assembly a subject of too 
little importance to be engrafted on a 
Constitution. 

Mr. Fairchild proposed to amend the 
3d section so as to apportion the number 
of Representatives to the population of 
the State. — Messrs. N. and H. Terry, al- 
though they did not entirely approve of 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



201 



the amendment; advocated the principle 
on which it was founded. 

Some verbal alterations were made in 
the 5th and 6th sections. 

On the 1 1th section. Mr. McLellan — 
Objected to any provision which re- 
quired that both Houses should set with 
open doors. He thought that it was 
enough for the House of Representatives 
to keep their doors open. The Council 
was composed of but few members; and 
although 3 they had always kept their 
doors shut, yet they had done business in 
a manner acceptable to the people. If 
they were a large body, and conducted 
their business in a formal way, it would 
be different. But twelve men was too 
small a number to make a great speech 
to — Besides, there were sometimes in 
that house; plain men who had not been 
so well educated as some others who 
spoke, but this 4 advice on some points 
was as good as that of the greatest orator. 
Such men not having been accustomed to 
public speaking, would not be willing to 
utter their sentiments before a crowded 
gallery and we should be deprived of their 
usefulness. — It would be of no benefit to 
the public to open the doors of that house. 

Mr. Lanman. Thought the section 
under consideration ought to be retained. 
The Council had long transacted their 
business in private. He would not say 
that they had done any thing wrong; — 
but we could not know what they did in 
secret session: — They may have been 
plotting the destruction of the State — 
they may have been engaged in treason- 
able correspondence; or they may have 
been engaged only in promoting our in- 
terests. No one indeed suspected them of 
betraying their trust, but it was some sat- 
isfaction to know on what subjects they 
were acting. There should be no secrets 



202 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 2, 



Wednesday afternoon and Thursday 
were spent in going over with the second 
report of the committee; each article was 
taken up by sections, and any member 
made such remarks, and proposed such 
alterations as he pleased, and when no 
one chose to remark further upon a par- 
ticular section, the house proceeded to 
the consideration of the next. No vote to 
accept or reject was taken on any section; 



between the Representative and his con- 
stituents. Why should an agent act 
without letting his principal know what 
he was doing? The Legislature did not 
stand in the relative situation of one Sov- 
ereign to another. In such a case 
diplomatic reasons might be urged in 
justification of the practice of 5 setting 
with closed doors. Among us there could 
be but one exception to the rule requiring 
that both houses should open their doors: 
and that was founded on the case of 
making appointments. — It might be un- 
pleasant to enter into the examination of 
a man's character in the presence of a full 
gallery. But even this business had been 
done in the house of Representatives in 
the most public manner. — And he knew 
of no evil that had resulted from it. — He 
believed that it had been beneficial. Be- 
cause no man would expose himself to 
such an investigation, unless he were 
conscious that his character would stand 
the test. — If there was 6 any objection to 
this section, it was, that the doors might 
be shut, not that they should be 
opened. — 

The 1st. 2d. 3d. and 4th sections of 
the 4th article 7 were passed without any 
debate of importance, after which Judge 
Edwards as Chairman of the Committee 
on the Constitution made another report 
in part as follows: [Articles 5-6] 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 203 



and this mode of procedure was adopted, 
as preferable to doing nothing, while the 
committee were completing their draft. 
In the progress of examination, some 
things were said, of some interest; but 
the same ground is to be gone over on the 
final decision, in full convention, and we 
shall therefore commence our next paper 
with the proceedings of Friday. 



Historical Notes, September 2, 1818 

Henry C. Flagg and Sherman Converse were publishers of the Connecticut Herald and the 
Connecticut Journal respectively, New Haven newspapers that reported the Convention's de- 
bates. Clarence S. Brigham, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers , 1690-1820 (2 
vols., Worcester, Mass., 1947), I, 41, 43. The original Section 22 of the draft Declaration, ex- 
punged during this day's debates, can be found below, p. 309. One of the suspensions of habeas 
corpus alluded to by Timothy Pitkin was undoubtedly Andrew Jackson's in New Orleans, refer- 
enced earlier in the debates of September 1; the provision relating to habeas corpus in the U.S. 
Constitution is in Art. I, Sec. 9. In his speech on the distribution of powers in the second section of 
the draft constitution, Robert Fairchild alluded to the reorganization of the state's court system in 
1806, when the functions of the Supreme Court of Errors were transferred from the governor and 
Council to the Superior Court judges (S.R., XIII, 30-33) and to the state's ratification of the U.S. 
Constitution in 1788. 

Making their first appearances on September 2 were Theodore North of Goshen, Calvin 
Butler of Plymouth, and Henry Terry of Enfield. The first two were currently justices of the peace 
in Litchfield County. North, who had served as a state representative for his home town, played 
only a minor role in the Convention. However, Butler, a Federalist who had many times repre- 
sented Plymouth in the Assembly, was an active participant, offering a number of motions and 
making several speeches. Henry Terry was a justice of the peace for Hartford County and probate 
judge for the East Windsor district; a former state representative, he was elected again in fall 1818 
to represent his home town. The Mercury's account of the debates mentions the presentation of 
the next report from the drafting committee, but according to the Convention's Journal, this actu- 
ally took place on September 3. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 2, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 8, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 8, 1818. 

1. building] blending Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

2. powers. From] powers, from Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

3. although] althought Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

4. this] their Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

5. practice of] practice Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

6. there was] then Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 

7. article] articles Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 8, 1818. 



204 public records September 3, 

[Convention Journal, September 3, 1818] 

Thursday September 3d 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. — 

The convention proceeded to consider the 4th Article reported by their 
Committee, relating to the "Executive Department," by Sections, in the manner 
agreed upon yesterday — 

Printed copies of the 2d Report of the Committee were again distributed to 
the members. 

The Committee made a 3d Report to the Convention, containing the 5th and 
6th Articles, relating to "the Judicial Department" and "The qualifications of 
Electors" which was read, and 600 copies ordered to be printed for the use of 
the members one of which is hereto annexed. — The Convention again pro- 
ceeded to consider by sections. 

The 4th Article reported by the Committee relating to the Executive Depart- 
ment. Sundry amendments were offered and adopted — The only amendment, 
affecting any material principle contained in the Report, related to the power of 
pardoning offences , & remitting fines & penalties , and the words vesting that 
power in the Governor were expunged, on motion of Mr. Lanman. 

On motion of Mr. Treadwell 

Resolved, that the order of the day for tomorrow consideration of the 1st 
Section of the 2nd Article relating to the "Distribution of Powers" be made the 
order of the day for tomorrow. — 

And the convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9-o' Clock. — 

[Convention Debates, September 3, 1818] 

[American Mercury] 

Thursday, August [i.e., September] 3d. 

On the 5th section of the 4th article. 

Mr. Treadwell objected to the power 
virtually vested by this section in the 
President of the U. States, of withdraw- 
ing the militia from the command of the 
Governor. Mr. Pitkin, observed, that to a 
certain extent, the Constitution of the 
United States was the supreme law of the 
land and was paramount to that of any 
State. It vested in the President, the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



205 



command of the militia when called into 
service; and no provision in our Consti- 
tution could infringe that right. He could 
not perceive any danger in adopting the 
section in its present form; for in case the 
militia, should be called out at any future 
time; this would not change the question 
as to the constitutionality of the call, 
which would occur on the constitution of 
the United States. 

After some further observations from 
Messrs. Root, A. Wolcott, Perkins and 
Butler — the House passed to the consid- 
eration of the other sections in course. On 
motion of Mr. Lanman the 10th section 
was amended by erasing the words "and 
pardons." Some verbal alterations were 
made in the 1 1th and 12th sections. 

On the 13th Section. Mr. Treadwell 
observed — that the Governor had hith- 
erto been a constituent part of the 
Council. They had derived much assis- 
tance from him and he could see no 
reason why he should not continue to act 
with them. He saw no advantage that 
could result from rendering him a dis- 
tinct branch. If he retired to his chamber 
as would probably be the case during the 
session; he would not be so well quali- 
fied to understand the reasons on which a 
law that might be presented for his ap- 
probation, was founded, as if he had 
been present at the discussion of it in the 
upper house. The power 1 of exercising a 
negative, was an important one. The Ex- 
ecutive might obtain the opinions of 
intelligent men upon the question on 
which he should be called to act: — But 
could not even in this way have so cor- 
rect a view of it as he might have had 
from being present while it was under 
deliberation. The Governor may be a 
man of talents and learning, capable of 
judging intuitively on almost any 



206 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 3^4-, 



subject; but the people of Connecticut 
did not always elect such men. Some- 
times they choose a Governor; who 
although he was a very polite well bred 
man and could make handsome bows, 
was not possessed of those abilities 
which, were necessary to the discharge 
of the duties of this office. — {He then 
proceeded to the distribution of Powers 
and of the Senate when Judge Edwards 
called to order.} 

Thursday Afternoon, Sept. 3. 

The 13th section of 4th article was 
amended, by inserting after the word "origi- 
nated" in the 5th line these words: — "with 
his objections which shall be entered at large 
on the journals of the House, who shall pro- 
ceed" and a few verbal alterations were 
made in the 17th, 18th, and 19th sections. A 
proposition was made to substitute the word 
Sabbath or Lord's Day for "Sunday" in the 
13th section and was supported by Mr. 
Austin and one or two other gentlemen 
whose names we did not know; but as it was 
merely a debate on words the discussion 
could not be very interesting to the public. 
The proposed alteration did not prevail. 

The second article was assigned as 
the order of the day for Friday; and the 
House adjourned. 



Historical Notes, September 3, 1818 

The Convention's Journal noted the presentation of the drafting committee's report on the ju- 
dicial department and electoral qualifications, for which see below, pp. 319-2 1 . We assume here, 
as elsewhere, that the "Mr. Pitkin" who responded to John Treadwell's comment on the militia 
was Timothy, an active participant in the Convention; he alluded to the U. S. Constitution, Art. II, 
Sec. 2. which gave the president command of the militia when called into national service. 
Making his first appearance in the debates on September 3 was William Perkins of Ashford, a 
Federalist lawyer who had served on the Council in 1816 and 1817 before losing his seat in the 
political upheaval that placed the Upper House in the hands of the reformers: S.R.. XVIII, In. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 3, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Mercury, Sept. 15. 1818. 
1. power] powers Mercury: emended from the Herald, Sept. 22. 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 207 

[Convention Journal, September 4, 1818] 

Friday — September 4th — 

The Journal of yesterday's proceeding was read — Printed copies of the 3rd 
Report of the Committee, relating to the " Judicial Department " and to the 
"Qualifications of Electors," were distributed to the members. 

The Convention proceeded to the order of the day, being the consideration 
of the 2d Article & with relating to the "Distribution of Powers," and after an 
amendment merely correcting the phraseology, the 2nd Article was adopted 
approved. 

The 3d Article, relating to the "Legislative Department["] was then read and 
considered by sections, & after an amendment varying the style only, was 
approved. — 

On motion of Mr. Treadwell to strike out the words " one stated Session of 
the General Assembly, to be holden, in each year, alternately at Hartford and 
New-Haven on the first Wednesday of May and October " and to insert in lieu 
thereof the words " two stated Sessions of the General Assembly, to be holden 
in each year alternately at Hartford and New-Haven on the 2d Thursday of May 
and October; it was determined in the affirmative. — by order of the Convention 
the yeas and nays were taken and The question was then taken on the question 
to pass [?] the Section as amended & was determined in the affirmative by yeas 
& nays which were as follows. — viz. — 

For the motion, Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, Everest, R. Pitkin, S. Pitkin, 
Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, 
Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchel, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Griffin, 
Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, Daboll, 
Williams, Braman, Brockway, Gallup, C. Sanford, Seeley, Whiting, L. San- 
ford, Weed, Fairchild, Burton, Bennet, Sturges, Perkins, R. W Williams, 
Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffin, L. Warren, Hutchins, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. 
Learned, Nichols, McLellan, Childs, O. Wolcott , Hayden, Mills, Lambert, 
Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. 
Battel, Butler, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W Battel, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, 
Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, 
Root, Edgerton, B. Phelps, Pease, Crawford, Talcott — 96. 

Against the motion — Messrs. Sylvester Wells, Norton, Samuel Wells, 
Hubbard, Wilcox, Barker, Elisha Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, Morse, E. Mar- 
shall, J. Phelps, N. Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, D. Pierpont, D. 
Tomlinson, Osborn, Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, A. 
Learned, Turner, Lanman, Fox, Hyde, C. Smith, Wm. Randall Jr., Palmer, 
Kimball, Wm. Randall, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, 



208 public records September 4, 

Lockwood, T. S. Wells, W. Shelton, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, Eversley, 
King, Gilbert, Graves, Stevens, Edwards, A. Gregory, Webb, Waldo, Byles, 
Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, 
Welch, Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, St. John, Merwin, Williams, Trowbridge, D. 
Johnson, S. Church, H. Marshall, Bushnel, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, 
Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Willey, Burrows, Peters, 
Hyde, N. Johnson, Paul, Sibley, Brigham — 96 Nays. 

And the motion was carried, by the casting vote of the President, in the 
affirmative. — 

On motion of Mr. Fairchild to strike out of the 3d Section of the 3d Article 
the words "The number of Representatives from each town shall be the same, 
as at present allowed and practised" and to insert in lieu thereof the words 
"Each town containing 4000 persons or more shall be entitled to two Represen- 
tatives, and each town containing a lesser number shall be entitled to one 
Representative and no more; the population to be ascertained by the Census of 
the United States which shall have been taken next preceding any election" — 

and it was determined in the negative — 

A motion was then made by the same member to amend the proposed 
amendment by inserting " 2500 " instead of " 4000 " and was determined in the 
negative — 

A further motion was made by the same member to insert in the proposed 
amendment " 2000 " instead of " 2500 " on which the yeas & nays were ordered 
to be taken [?] & were as follows — to wit — For the motion and was deter- 
mined in the negative. 

The Committee made a 4th Report to the Convention, containing the 7th, 
8th, 9th, 10th & 11th Articles, relating to "Religion, Education, Impeach- 
ments, General Provisions," and Amendments to the Constitution, which was 
read and 600 copies ordered to be printed, one of which is annexed. 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott to amend the 3d Section by striking out the last 
clause, which was is- in these words "but the General Assembly may reduce the 
number provided that there shall be always at least one Representative from 
each town" — it was determined in the affirmative. 

On motion of Mr. the question, to pass the 3d Section as amended, it was de- 
termined in the affirmative; the question being, by order of the convention, 
taken by yeas and nays were as follows. — 

For the motion, Messrs. Hooker, R. Pitkin, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, T. Pitkin, 
Treadwell, Wilcox, Barker, A. Church, Treat, J. Pettibone, Whittlesey, 
Grannis, Mitchell, J. Phelps, N. Smith, Hull, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, 
Griffin, Todd, R. Pierpont, Benedict, Gunn, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, Marks, 
Miles, Thomas, Tolls, Manwaring, A. Learned, Turner, Lanman, Hyde, 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



209 



Williams, Braman, C. Smith, W. Randall Jr., Palmer, Kimball, Gallup, Avery, 
T. S. Wells, Botsford, Whiting, Sanford, King, Edwards, Burton, Bennet, 
Waldo, Perkins, Williams, Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffin, L. Warren, Hutchins, 
Dunlap, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Larned, Nichols, McLellan, Hayden, Mills, 
Lambert, Douglas, Pinney, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, 
Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, 
Everitt, Hinsdale, W. Battel, Piatt, Miller, Stow, Brainerd, Huntington, 
Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Sill, Chapman, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Peters, B. 
Phelps, Pease, Hyde, N. Johnson, Hall, Talcott, Brigham. 112 Yeas . 

Against the motion , Messrs. Sylvester Wells, N. Terry, Hart, Norton, H. Terry, 
Dixon, Saml. Wells, Buell, E. Phelps, Jones, Morse, Lusk, Marshall, Clark, 
Pierpont, Andrews, Adams, Fox, Deming, Isham, Abel, Daboll, M. Warren, 
Brockway, W Randall, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, Sanford, Lock- 
wood, W Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Fairman, Eversley, Gilbert, Graves, Weed, 
Fairchild, Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Byles, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, 
Woodward, Hall, Keigwin, Childs, Burrall, Merwin, Williams, Trowbridge, 
Tallmadge, Marshall, Bushnell, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Sage, Lyman, Guern- 
sey, Nott, Young, Willey, Burrows, Crawford, Subley — 72 Nays. — 

On motion of Mr. Jenks to insert in the Constitution a section in these words 
"No clergyman, or preacher of the Gospel, of any denomination, shall be capa- 
ble of holding any civil office in this State, or of being a member of either 
branch of the Legislature, while he continues in the exercise of the pastoral or 
clerical functions" — Ordered that it lie on the table. — 

And the convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 9-o' Clock. — 
[Convention Debates, September 4, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Friday Morning, September 4. 

The Convention took up the second 
report of the committee, and proceeded 
to the consideration of the first section of 
the second article, which had been made 
the order of the day. 

Mr. Treadwell moved an amendment, 
by striking out of the 3d line, the words 
"body of so as to read "a separate mag- 
istracy," instead of "a separate body of 
magistracy." Amended. 

Mr. N. Smith said he had understood, 
that there had been some discussion, on 



[American Mercury] 

Friday morning — order of the day — 
Sept. 4. 

DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS. 



Mr. Smith, of New Haven, said — that 
he did not rise, at this time, for the 



210 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



the section before the house; he knew not 
what observations nor what objections, 
if any, had been made; he had no objec- 
tion to the section, and therefore did not 
rise to go at length into a discussion of 
the principle contained in it. He would 
merely observe, that the people had 
thought best to form a constitution — they 
could not exercise the powers of govern- 
ment themselves, in an individual 
capacity; the supreme power must be 
vested somewhere, and the only question 
is where can it be vested best? Can it be 
vested in the legislature with the most 
safety? Shall the legislature consist of 
three distinct departments, and that 
power be vested in one, or two, or the 
whole? Hitherto the supreme power had 
been vested in the legislature of the state; 
originally, the legislature possessed ALL 
power — they enacted and executed the 
laws; but few years since all petitions for 
new trials were brought before that 
body; they have very wisely to be sure, 
parcelled out their powers, and given the 
judicial and executive into other hands — 
but the question is, will not the people 
declare, in whom the supreme power 
shall be vested, and not leave the deci- 
sion of it to the legislature? If the 
legislature have all power, they may con- 
duct prudently, as heretofore, and they 
may not; the people are prepared 1 to 
make this a fundamental article; the 
powers of the legislature have been so 
parcelled out, that they are now really 
vested in three distinct departments — 
and since they have prepared the ma- 
chinery, will they not make it 
permanent? The experience of mankind 
has proved that the supreme executive 
power can't be vested with safety in the 
legislature; the power of enacting laws 
can be confined to the legislature with 



purpose of entering into a discussion of 
the subject before the Convention. He 
understood that there had been some 
debate on the article under consider- 
ation; but as this had occurred during the 
absence of the committee of which he 
was a member; he had not had an oppor- 
tunity of hearing the objections, (if any 
had been made) against this part of the 
report. He would therefore merely state 
the motives by which the committee 
were governed in framing this article on 
the distribution of powers. — The good of 
society required that the supreme power 
of government should be vested some- 
where. This power was vested originally 
in the people; but as they cannot collec- 
tively exercise it; they have delegated it 
to proper persons, elected from among 
themselves. As we were about to frame a 
Constitution of civil government; it 
became important to inquire where this 
power should in future be vested? 
whether in one, two or three branches? 
Under the old form of government in 
Connecticut, the Legislature had all the 
power. They made laws, acted as judges 
to interpret those laws, and directed the 
manner in which they should be exe- 
cuted. He would not, now raise the 
question, "whether this government had 
not been properly administered?" He 
was willing to admit that it had been. But 
this consideration could not operate 
upon us while engaged in framing a writ- 
ten Constitution providing for the future. 
If our government had been well admin- 
istered; this was no security that it would 
continue to be. Any government was a 
good one when, well administered. — 
But if the people had enjoyed an uncom- 
mon portion of happiness under the old 
constitution, it was not because the gov- 
ernment was properly organized. Every 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



211 



safety — but can the power of executing 
them also be confined with equal safety? 
Shall the same power which enacts the 
law, have authority to put it in execution; 
let the executive power be distinct, and 
you may rely on a safe execution of the 
law. Coming to the Judicial department, 
shall the legislature 2 be the judge, who is 
to put a construction upon the law which 
he has made himself? Has not this been 
declared to be the very definition of des- 
potism? It is remarked in Mr. Jefferson's 
Notes on Virginia, that he cares not, 
whether there be one despot, or two hun- 
dred & ten. If you cannot trust one man 
to make a law, and execute it, can two 
hundred and ten be trusted with more 
safety? Legislative and executive powers 
are well enough in the hands of good 
men — but you may not always have them 
in the hands of good men. The objection 
lies in the principle. The government of 
Connecticut has always been mild, and 
well administered, but it has never been 
correctly organized. These few remarks 
he submitted to the consideration of the 
Convention; he did not rise to go into the 
argument at length. — Section approved 
and accepted. 

Sec. 2d, was also accepted without 
amendment. 

Art. 3d, Sec. 1. — Mr. Treadwell 
moved to strike out the words "of the 
State of Connecticut," which was done. 

Mr. McClellan moved to erase after 
the word styled, "The Senate," and insert 
the "Governor and Council." 

Considerable time was spent upon 
this motion, and a great many desultory 
remarks made, which are not important 
to be detailed. It was contended on the 
one hand, that names are but names 
simply, and that "the senate" was a more 
appropriate, as well as concise title, for 



enlightened jurist had taught us, and the 
experience of man had evinced, that a 
combination of the three great powers of 
government, — the Legislative, the Exec- 
utive, and the Judicial, was incompatible 
with the enjoyment and preservation of 
liberty — nay that it was the very 
definition 3 of Despotism. — The Legisla- 
ture themselves, sensible of the evils of 
the inconveniences of such a system; had 
at different times been obliged to parcel 
out these powers, and had in part already 
done, what was now proposed in the 
second article of the report: And the 
people were now prepared for a proper 
distribution. It remained for the Conven- 
tion to decide whether they were willing 
to establish permanently a system which 
had been so universally approved? He 
felt confident that they were; and with 
these brief remarks, submitted the 
question. — 



The question was then taken upon 
both sections of the 2d article and pre- 
vailed by an almost unanimous vote. 



Mr. McLellan moved to amend the 
1st Section of the 3d article by substitut- 
ing the words "Governor and Council" 
for the word "Senate." The object of this 
motion was to amalgamate the Executive 
and Legislative branches. But it did not 
succeed; very few voting in the affirma- 
tive. — The 2d section of the same article 
was so amended as to place the sessions 
of the General Assembly on the same 



212 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



the upper branch of the legislature, than 
"the governor and council" — did not ex- 
press the idea intended; for the 
Convention had already decided, that 
there should be three distinct branches, 
or departments of the legislature, of 
which the governor should be the execu- 
tive. To make the term appropriate, the 
executive branch must be incorporated 
with the legislative, which it was pre- 
sumed gentlemen would not agree to. On 
the other hand it was contended, that 
adopting the style "the senate" was de- 
parting from the genius and spirit of our 
government — that it looked more like 
establishing a rank in community, and 
removing a branch of our government at 
a greater distance from the people, than 
they had customarily been — that altho' 
names were but names in certain cases, 
still they were not to be disregarded, and 
that something more was really involved 
in the amendment than a mere substitu- 
tion of names — that it involved the 
question whether the governor should be 
a distinct branch of the legislature — that 
according to the plan proposed, we were 
to have in Connecticut, such a being as a 
chief magistrate, clothed with no sort of 
authority, unless it were with authority to 
ask the legislature to reconsider a vote, 
without the power of meeting them in the 
argument. It was hoped that gentlemen 
would not contend for an officer of this 
description. — Question of amendment 
rejected. 

The section approved as previously 
amended. 

Sec. 2. Mr. Treadwell moved to 
amend the section, by erasing the words 
'one session of the general assembly to 
be holden in each year, alternately at 
Hartford and N. Haven, on the first 
Wednesday of May,' and insert "two 



ground as they now stand. On the 
question 4 "whether there should be two 
stated sessions in a year instead of 
one?" — the House was equally divided; 
and the President decided in favor of two 
to be held as usual; and the section 
passed as amended. — Adjourned. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



213 



stated sessions of the general assembly 
to be holden in each year alternately at 
Hartford and New-Haven, on the second 
Thursday of May and October." 

Mr. A. Wolcott moved to decide 5 the 
amendment, which was done, so that the 
question was to be taken on "fwo stated 
sessions of the general assembly in each 
year.["] This produced considerable des- 
ultory debate, and was finally decided by 
counting the members, the result was de- 
clared to be 93 to 93— The President 6 
gave his vote in favour of the amend- 
ment. Adjourned to 2 P.M. 

Friday Afternoon. 

Second part of the amendment passed. 

Mr. Stow then moved to amend the 
section by striking out, as far as had been 
already amended, and inserting the fol- 
lowing: "The general assembly shall be 
holden at Hartford on the second Thurs- 
day in May next, and from time to time, 
shall convene, alternately at Hartford 
and New-Haven, with power to adjourn, 
as shall by law be prescribed." 

Mr. T. Pitkin, submitted to the Chair, 
whether it was in order to move to strike 
out of the section, what had just been voted 
into it — gentleman might move if he 
pleased to strike out the whole section, but 
not the amendment — motion withdrawn. 

The question was now taken on the 
section as amended — and on calling for 
the Yeas and Nays, they were 96 to 96, as 
follows— [Roll Call Vote] 

The President gave his vote, in favour 
of the section, with this reason, he said — 
"It belonged to the People to say, what 
alteration should be made in their form 
of Civil Government — he could not take 
it upon himself, individually to make 
innovations." 



214 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



The Committee here made a final 
report, and 600 Copies were ordered to be 
printed. 

The Convention then proceeded to 
the consideration of the 3d Section of the 
3d Article. 

Mr. Jencks, moved to amend the sec- 
tion by adding the following words — 
"No Clergyman, or Preacher of the 
Gospel, of any denomination, shall be 
capable of holding any civil office in this 
state, or of being a member of either 
branch of the legislature while he contin- 
ues in the exercise of the Pastoral or 
Clerical functions." 

Mr. Fairchild moved to strike out the 
whole section, after the word elected, in 
the 3d line and insert the following — 'And 
each town containing 2500 persons or 
more, shall be entitled to two Representa- 
tives, and every town, containing a lesser 
number, shall be entitled to one Represen- 
tative only, the population to be 
ascertained by the census, next preceding 
any election.' 

Mr. Stevens moved to vary the 
amendment by inserting "four thousand" 
which was done. 

Mr. H. Terry has brought into the 
house, a number of calculations: there 
were 44 Towns, in the State, which have 
2500 inhabitants, and over; and 76 which 
have less — so that on the first amend- 
ment, he said there would be 164 
members in the house of Representa- 
tives — of 400[0] and upwards there were 
only 4 towns in the state, one of which 
was Stamford, the town to which the 
gentleman 9 [James Stevens] belongs, 
who made the motion. This plan would 
give 124 members to the house of 
Representatives. 



Friday Afternoon, 5th [i.e., 4th] Sept. 
Judge Edwards as Chairman of the 
Committee presented the following 
report. — [Articles 7-11] 



Mr. Fairchilds amendment to appor- 
tion the representatives to the population 
of the State was called up. — Messrs. 
Stevens, Fairchild, N. Terry, Treadwell 
and A. Wolcott, differed as to the number 
which should be assumed as the criterion 
of apportionment; 7 but supported the 
principle contained in the amendment; 
on the ground that it was the only one 
which could ensure an equal representa- 
tion to the people. — Messrs. Perkins, 
Lanman, Smith and Pitkin, thought it 
was not expedient to adopt the amend- 
ment; as it would infringe the ancient 
privileges 8 of some towns. — Mr. 
Lanman considered the towns as corpo- 
rations, claiming a right to elect a certain 
number of representatives, either by 
grant or immemorial usage. — The main 
question was then taken on different 
numbers; but did not succeed. — On 
motion of Mr. A. Wolcott the 3d section 
was amended by "striking out" all the 
words after the word "Practiced" in the 
5th line. The section passed as amended; 
and House adjourned. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



215 



The question was taken on 4000 and 
2500, and both negatived. On motion for 
2000. 

Mr. Lanman declared himself op- 
posed to doing any thing at all, on the 
subject — gentlemen did not come here 
as representatives of the people to legis- 
late on that subject — the people had not 
sent them here, the towns had sent them; 
many towns had sent two Representa- 
tives, they had a Constitutional right so 
to do, and it could not be taken from 
them. The question was one which did 
not belong to the Convention to settle: 
they might indeed, with a strong hand 
and stretched out arm, exercise the 
power, but they had no right — 
Representation 10 right was secured to the 
Towns, it was vested in them from the be- 
ginning, and the Convention could not 
touch it — the spirit of the times would 
not admit of its being touched — there 
had been a large increase of population, 
and the government had been extended; 
he was in favour of economy, but he 
would not destroy the popular influence 
of the Assembly. This would not be jus- 
tice, and he doubted the power of the 
Assembly to do it; the small towns would 
not have a right to send a Representative 
at all, except it had been reserved to 
them. Would gentlemen destroy corpo- 
rate rights! as the law now stands, the 
right of franchise, was predicated on 
property as well as morals — this was 
agreeable to the personal rights of the 
people, and the interest of the 
inhabitants. 

Mr. Treadwell said he was satisfied 
that the people ought to have a full repre- 
sentation, it was for their good; if the 
representation was to be altered, it 
should by all means be done by the con- 
vention. The gentleman from Norwich 



216 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



[James Lanman] seemed to doubt the 
propriety of Conventional interference; 
he says we are not sent here by the 
people, but by "towns corporate" — he 
doubted very much the correctness of the 
opinion; he had considered the delegates 
as sent here by individuals, and that indi- 
viduals constituted 11 the body of the 
freemen; they were representatives of 
the freemen, and not of the towns; and 
justice required the representation to be 
regulated by the census; the most popu- 
lous towns should be entitled to the 
greatest number of Representatives — it 
would be impossible to determine on an 
equal number from each town, but the 
population could be easily determined, 
and the ratio be fixed with more accuracy 
and less difficulty; the question should 
by all means be settled, and if the power 
of doing it, was to be exercised by any 
body, it should be by this — to come at 
equality in representation was impossi- 
ble, and such alterations should be made 
as the spirit of the times would war- 
rant — at any rate it would be well to fix 
on a proportion, and if the number of 
representatives, should be reduced from 
a few towns, it would do them no 
injury — but he did not conceive it to be 
of material importance, one way or the 
other, if the question was only decided. 
Mr. N. Terry, remarked, that all that 
could be said might be unavailing, but he 
was desirous of expressing his views of 
the subject, in very few words; in all 
cases it was a duty to advocate correct 
principles; the theory of this government 
is a democracy — not as anciently, a 
simple democracy, but a representative 
democracy — it is a form of government 
derived from the people. Now, Sir, if the 
people meet as originally, to transact 
their own business, would there not be an 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



217 



equality in their votes? would not each 
vote count, and the vote of one individ- 
ual be equal to that of another? if so, 
ought we not then, to follow the same 
rule? the principle is in the theory. I 
know Sir, that in practice, you can't carry 
it into effect exactly; but is this a reason 
why you should not attempt to carry it 
into effect at all? one honourable gentle- 
man seems to think we have not power to 
make an alteration; that this is too much 
like legislation: Sir, the business of 
making a Constitution, is all legislation: 
the only difference from ordinary legis- 
lation is, that we enact certain laws 
which shall be permanent; not subject to 
alteration by the legislature, but which 
shall govern the legislature: but we have 
not the power to alier representation, be- 
cause we are representatives of the 
towns, and not of the people. Sir, should 
we act from this idea, the people would 
laugh at us — but it is said that property 
should govern the representation; this 
would operate against the gentleman still 
more. I say that numbers and not prop- 
erty, should be the criterion of 
representation, else you depart from the 
true principles of a democratic govern- 
ment. Sir, in the house of representatives, 
according to our present representation, 
does a majority of the people govern? 
this is the evil which we ought to correct. 
It is a principle acknowledged by all, that 
the majority, should govern; then alter 
the ratio of your representation. The 
great objection seems to be, that a per- 
fect equality is not practicable; but will 
you do nothing, because you can't do 
every thing? I know that your representa- 
tion can't be made perfectly equal — but 
does not the same objection exist in Mas- 
sachusetts, as well as the other towns 12 in 
New-England? in Massachusetts, each 



218 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



town sends at least one representative, 
and agreeably to certain provisions; they 
have the privilege of sending more — so 
that the town of Boston has sent forty 
representatives — that is fixing your rep- 
resentation on the principle of 
numbers— true, our representation has 
always gone on well enough, but is that a 
reason why we shall make no alteration? 
we are now legislating for posterity, and 
we ought to have an eye to the future sit- 
uation of Connecticut — the time will 
come, when certain towns in the state 
shall have fifteen thousand inhabitants, 
and shall no provision be made for such a 
state of things? we are sanctioning the 
very principle, which was the cause of 
the unequal representation in England — 
if you sanction this principle, you break 
down the land marks of democracy, and 
destroy the foundations of a democratic 
government. Sir, the idea held up by gen- 
tlemen, is somewhat novel — in all the 
states, an attempt has been made, at an 
equality in representation, and that on 
the principle of numbersf;] we can re- 
organize 13 the same principle and ought 
not to depart from it. 

Mr. T. Pitkin said he had no doubt 
that the convention have a right to alter 
the representation; it is their duty to fix 
the number precisely, or to fix some rule 
which shall always determine the 
number beyond the possibility of a 
doubt. The legislature should have noth- 
ing to do with regulating their own 
members, 14 or mode of election; they are 
the representatives of the people, and it is 
for the people to say how many represen- 
tatives they will have, and how they shall 
be chosen. Sir, I would fix their number, 
or a rule which shall determine their 
number: What that number or what that 
rule shall be, it may be difficult to 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



219 






determine; but difficult as may be the 
task, I would have it fixed. Sir, in doing 
this, there are several considerations, 
which in my mind have weight. If we 
were beginning a government de novo, 
or if we had never been under any gov- 
ernment, our deliberations might be 
different — but, sir, we have a form of 
government, and the preamble declares 
that we have thought proper to "revise" 
that form; under that government the 
people have rights, which are as ancient 
as their Constitution, and which are 
perpet[u]al — widely different is our sit- 
uation, from that of the people of 
Indiana, or Mississippi, when they 
wished to form a Constitution[;] there 
are numerous causes, to affect our delib- 
erations, which could not operate upon 
theirs, Sir, we have the habits, the prac- 
tices, the principles, the education and 
morals of a people, which have grown 
out of nearly two hundred years, to take 
into consideration — these are to influ- 
ence our deliberations, and for one Sir I 
deem it inexpedient to make any alter- 
ation, in our present system of 
Representation. The representation of 
Connecticut has always been by towns, 
and I would keep it so. The corporations 
of your towns, and your societies, even 
down to school districts constitute the 
best system of government, ever formed 
by man; it is a system which has been es- 
tablished only in New-England — it is the 
constant theme of eulogy and admiration 
to the other states, and I might say to the 
world — it is admired by strangers, and 
foreigners — say they, all your affairs are 
managed like clock-work. I would not go 
so far as the gentleman from Norwich 
[James Lanman], and say that our 
representation 15 should be determined 
by towns and not by numbers — but by 



220 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 4, 



both. I can remember when certain 
towns did not send a representative — as 
to the precise number which is to consti- 
tute the popular branch of a legislature, it 
can never be decided — you can never fix 
a maximum, or minimum, by which this 
is to be regulated — this must depend on 
the habits, the manners and the customs 
of the people; our representation has 
been regulated by towns, and the number 
of representatives has been increasing. 
In some of the States, the representation 
is by counties, and there the inhabitants 
are numbered — we have towns with not 
more than seven hundred inhabitants, 
and if you fix two thousand and under, as 
the ratio, you may have a very great in- 
equality. Seven hundred inhabitants 
ought not to have the same influence 
with two thousand — but if you say that 
seven hundred should not send the same, 
you would be driven to say that such 
town should send no representative — in 
that case, you could not tax such town. 
But it is said, that in large towns the in- 
equality is great. I know it is, sir, and the 
individuals in large towns, have influ- 
ence and wealth, perhaps, sufficient to 
make up for the difference; wealth and 
influence always go together. Sir, we 
have always had our representation by 
towns, and to change it, is a matter of 
speculation. I submit, whether the affairs 
of the state have not been well managed; 
two hundred representatives have been 
satisfactory to the people, they feel a 
confidence in them, and there is a conve- 
nience in sending two from a town; it 
prevents a great deal of bickering, which 
would happen, when only one should be 
sent — whatever we might do, or however 
different we might act, were we a new 
state; since we have a practice which is 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



221 



satisfactory to the people, I would con- 
tinue it. 

Mr. A. Wolcott, and Mr. Stevens, 
spoke in favour of the amendment, and 
the question was taken and negatived. 

Mr. A. Wolcott then moved to amend 
the section, by erasing all after the word 
"buC in the fifth line — which was done. 

The question was then taken on the 
section as amended, and decided by yeas 
and nays as follows — :[Roll Call 
Vote] — Adjourned to 9 o'Cl[o]ck to 
morrow morning. 



Historical Notes, September 4, 1818 

The Convention's Journal noted the presentation of the drafting committee's final report, for 
which see below, pp. 322-26. In his speech on the separation of powers, Nathan Smith, who had 
been absent in the drafting committee during earlier discussions of the article by the full Conven- 
tion, alluded to the Notes on the State of Virginia, where Thomas Jefferson opined that 
"concentrating" the legislative, executive, and judicial powers "in the same hands is precisely the 
definition of despotic government. It will be no alleviation that those powers will be exercised by 
a plurality of hands, and not by a single one. 173 despots would surely be as oppressive as one." 
Jefferson, Writings, p. 245. 

In the debates on town representation, Nathaniel Terry referenced arrangements in Massachu- 
setts and other New England states, as well as the currently unequal representation of localities in 
the British House of Commons before the reforms later in the nineteenth century. For the current 
provisions in the Massachusetts Constitution of 1780, see Thorpe, Constitutions, III, 1898. Timo- 
thy Pitkin's allusion to Indiana and Mississippi is apparently a general one, meant to contrast the 
experience of those newly-organized states, which had written their constitutions in 1816 and 
1817 respectively, to the much longer political history of Connecticut. 

Making his first substantive appearance in the proceedings on September 4 was Charles Jenks 
(or Jencks) of East Windsor, a Hartford County justice of the peace who offered a tabled amend- 
ment to bar clergymen from sitting in the state legislature. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 4, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 15, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 15, 1818. 

1. are prepared] have preferred Mirror, Sept. 14, 1818. 

2. legislature] legislator Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

3. definition] defination Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

4. question] questions Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

5. decide] divide Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

6. President] President promptly Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

7. apportionment] appointments Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 



222 public records September 4-5, 

8. privileges] priviliges Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

9. gentleman] gentlemen Courant; emended from the Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

10. Representation] representative Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

1 1. that individuals constituted] those individuals constitute Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

12. towns] states Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

13. re-organize] recognize Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

14. members] numbers Journal, Sept. 15, 1818 

15. representation] representatives Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



223 



[Convention Journal, September 5, 1818] 

Saturday Septemr. 5th 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read & corrected. 

Mr. A. Church made motion to add a new clause to the 3rd Section of the 3d 
Article, to exclude persons of certain professions from being eligible to a seat 
in either branch of the Legislature, or any office under the same, which was re- 
jected, it being out of order, the sd. 3 Section having passed. 

Mr. Edwards moved to reconsider the vote passed yesterday approving the 
3d Section of the 3d Article, which was determined in the negative. 

On motion of Mr. Butler, that the word "Freeman" in the 2d line of the 3d 
Article be stricken out, & the word "Electors" inserted in lieu thereof, and that 
the same wherever the word "freemen" occurs in said Article , the same alter- 
ation be made, — it was determined in the affirmative. 

On motion of Mr. Pitkin further to amend the 4th Section of the 3d Article 
by striking out all the words after the word "Electors" in the 2d line, it was de- 
termined in the affirmative. 

It was moved by Mr. Treadwell further to amend said Section by striking 
out all the words after " consist of and inserting in lieu thereof other words, so 
that the whole Section should be read thus "The Senate shall consist of The 
Governor and Lieut. Governor for the time being and twelve Senators, to be 
chosen annually by the Electors as is hereinafter directed," — 

And the Convention adjourned until monday next at 2 o'Clock afternoon. — 



[Convention Debates, September 5, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Saturday, September 5. 

§Sec. 4th, was taken up, and on 
motion of Mr. Butler, it was voted to sub- 
stitute " electors''' for "freemen" where 
ever it occurs in the instrument — voted. 
It was then moved to strike out the whole 
section, after the word "electors," in the 
2d line which was done unanimously. 



[American Mercury] 

Saturday Morning, Sept. 6th [i.e., 
5th]. 

The 4th section of the 3d article being 
under consideration: — 



Mr. H. Terry, objected to this section 
as vesting in the Legislature the power of 
regulating the number of Senators: — 



224 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 5, 



Mr. T. Pitkin. — Rose to offer an 
amendment, which he thought would ob- 
viate the objections which might be 
made to the section as it stood; and 
which he would preface by a few re- 
marks. — One of the first principles 
which should be considered in framing a 
Constitution was; — the establishing of 
the proper branches of government. — 
The next was; — to designate the number 
that should comprise the several 
branches. The latter principle had been 
recognized by every State in the Union. 
All of which had fixed by their Constitu- 
tions the specific number of each 
department, or had furnished data by 
which that number might be ascer- 
tained. — His proposition was to strike 
out from this section all that follows the 
word "provided," in the 3d line. — The 
section in its present form, left it with the 
Legislature to determine the number of 
the Senate. He did not say that he was un- 
willing to district. But this should be 
regulated by the Constitution, and not by 
the Legislature. The object of the Con- 
vention, was, not only to define rights 
and powers, but to limit the Legislature. 
There was a provision of this kind in our 
old Constitution, by which the number of 
the Council was limited to twelve. We 
ought to render it permanent or at least 
place it out of the power of the Legisla- 
ture to vary the number. — 

Judge Edwards. — Said, that he could 
not adopt all the reasons of the gentle- 
man, last up; but agreed with him in the 
principal question. The number of the 
Senate should be fixed. It should be ren- 
dered as definite as human wisdom and 
foresight could make it. Unless this be 
done by the Constitution; it would 
remain a bone of contention to the Legis- 
lature and the people. The Senate, would 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



225 



be unwilling to lessen their power by in- 
creasing their number, and any act, 
which might go from the house of Repre- 
sentatives for this purpose; would be 
negatived. He did not believe in human 
perfectability; no one of us was exempt 
from the common depravity derived 
from Adam. If this should be left to the 
Legislature, who could say, what the 
Senate or Council would do. Might they 
not, in the sweet enjoyment of those 
pleasures which the venerable gentle- 
man from Farmington (Mr. Treadwell) 
had the other day, so feelingly described; 
mumble over the question in secret; and 
oppose any thing that should tend to 
lessen their influence. He would not 
leave a subject of this importance; in- 
volving the peace of the State; to the 
descution 1 of any Legislature. 

Mr. A. Wolcott — Was decidedly of 
opinion that this principle should be set- 
tled by the Convention. He would have 
the Legislature to ascertain the number 
of Senators. — Mr. Treadwell moved to 
incorporate the Governor with the 
Senate. — And the House adjourned to 2 
o'clock on Monday afternoon. 



Mr. Treadwell, then moved to amend 
still further by erasing all after the word 
"consist," and inserting "the Governour 
and Lieut. Governour, for the time being, 
and twelve Senators, to be chosen annu- 
ally by the electors, as is herein after 
directed." — Adjourned to Monday, 2 
o'clock P.M. 



Historical Notes, September 5, 1818 

Aaron Church, a delegate from Hartland, made his only motion in the Convention on this date, 
offering an unsuccessful amendment relating to membership in the legislature. Connecticut's co- 
lonial charter had set membership in the Council at twelve, as Timothy Pitkin mentioned on his 
speech of this date. 



Textual Notes on the Debates, September 5, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 15, 1818, and the Mercury, Sept. 15, 1818. 
1. descution] descretion Times, Sept. 15, 1818; decision Herald, Sept. 22, 1818. 



226 public records September?, 

[Convention Journal, September 7, 1818] 

Monday September 7th 

The Journal, of yesterday's Saturdays proceedings, was read. 

The printed copies of the last Report of the Genl. Committee were distrib- 
uted to the members, one of which is hereto annexed. 

The consideration of Mr. Treadwell's motion to amend the 4th Section of 
the 3d Article was resumed, the object of which amendment was to place the 
Governor at the head of the Senate — and on the question being put, it was de- 
termined in the negative by yeas and nays as follows viz. — 

For the motion Messrs. Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin. Reed, T. Pitkin. 
Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Grannis, Mitchell, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, 
Riggs, Farnham, Griffing, Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Thomas, Tolls, 
Deming, Whiting, L. Sanford, R. W. Williams, Payne, Frost, Ingalls, Hayden, 
Mills, Lambert, Hale, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, Swan, Everitt, A. 
Hinsdale, Wm. Battell, Baldwin, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Lane, Nott, 
Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott — 56 yeas . — 

Against the motion — Messrs. Sylvester Wells, Saml. Hart, Norton, R. 
Pitkin, Jencks, H. Terry, Dixon, Saml. Wells, Wilcox, Barker, Elisha Phelps, J. 
Pettibone Jr., Jones, E. Marshall, Smith, H. [C.?] Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, 
D. Pierpont. Osborn, Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, 
Learned, Lanman, Fox, Daboll, Wm. Williams, Braman, M. Warren, 
Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, Palmer, Kimball. Gallup, Avery, Hill, Starr, 
Cook, Lacey, Sanford, Lockwood, T. S. Wells, Wm. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, 
Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, King, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Ed- 
wards, Fairchild, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, L. 
Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, 
Hall, Keigwin, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, Burnham, North, St. John, 
Merwin, J. Williams, A. Pettibone, J. Battel, Butler, Trowbridge, D. Johnson. 
S. Church, Marshal, Bushnel, Tallmadge, Piatt, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, 
Lyman, Guernsey, Hungerford, Elliot, Chapman, Young, Willey, Burrows, 
Peters, E. Hyde, Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham, 114 nays . — 

On motion of Mr. M. Warren to amend said 4th section by striking out the 
words " twelve members " and inserting in lieu thereof, a provision that twenty 
Senators be annually chosen by districts and that the State be divided into 
twenty districts for that purpose, a division of the amendment being ordered, 
the question was taken on that part of the amendment providing that the Senate 
consist of " twenty Senators; " and determined in the negative by yeas and nays 
as follows, to wit, 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



227 



For the amendment, Messrs. Sylvester Wells, Saml. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, 
Jencks, H. Terry, Dixon, Saml. Wells, Wilcox, Barker, J. Pettibone, E. Marshal, 
D. Pierpont, Andrews, Marks, Manwaring, Learned, Lanman, Fox, Daboll, 
Wm. Williams, M. Warren, Brockway, C. Smith, Palmer, Kimball, Avery- 
Cook, C. Sanford, Stevens, Edwards, Fairchild, Webb, Freeman, Woodward, 
Welch, Merwin, Williams, Butler, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Chapman, 
Willey, Burrows, Peters, Crawford, — 48 Yeas. 

Against the motion — Messrs. Hooker, B. Hart, S. Pitkin, Reed, T. Pitkin, 
Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Elisha Phelps, Grannis, Mitchel, Lusk, 
Fowler, Rose, Hull, Shelton, Riggs, Farnham, Griffing, R. Pierpont, Clark, 
Benedict, Osborn, Miles, Adams, Thomas, Tolls, Ives, Deming, Isham, 
Braman, Comstock, Gallup, Hill, Starr, T. S. Wells, Wm. Shelton, Barnum, 
Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, Whiting, Sanford, J. King, Gilbert, 
Weed, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, Bennett, Sturges, Waldo, R. W. Williams, 
Payne, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Dunlap, 
Ingalls, Hall, Learned, Nichols, Keigwin, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, 
Douglas, Pinney, Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, 
Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battel, Trowbridge, D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, 
Everet, A. Hinsdale, W. Battle, H. Marshal, Bushnell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, J. 
Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Lyman, Guernsey, Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, 
Nott, Sill, Young, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, B. Phelps, Pease, E. Hyde, N. John- 
son, Paul, Talcott, Sibley, Brigham — 116 Nays. — 

The next question before the convention was on the other branch of the pro- 
posed amendment, to wit, whether the Senators should be chosen by Districts, 
but, before any decision thereon, the Convention adjourned until tomorrow 
morning at 8 o' Clock. — 

[Convention Debates, September 7, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Monday Afternoon, Sept. 7. 

The amendment offered on Saturday, 
to the 4th section of the 3d article, was 
taken up, and Mr. Treadwell gave his 
reasons for offering it, at some length; 
we shall omit them however in this 
place, as the question involved in the 
amendment will come up again, and re- 
ceive particular consideration. — 
Amendment negatived by Yeas and 
Nays— 114 to 56. 



[American Mercury] 

Monday Afternoon. 

Mr. Treadwells motion to annex the 
Governor to the Senate and make him a 
constituent part of that branch, was 
negatived. 



228 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 7-8, 



Mr. Warren moved to amend the 4th 
section, by increasing the number of 
Senators to 20; and to choose them by 
districts. This amendment was divided; 
when the question was taken first on the 
number, and lost. No other business of 
importance occurred this afternoon. 

The Convention adjourned to Tues- 
day morning. 



Mr. M. Warren then proposed to 
amend the section so as to make the 
Senate consist of 20 members to be 
chosen by districts; the state to be di- 
vided into 20 districts. We may give his 
plan of districting hereafter, but it is not 
important in this place. 

The amendment was decided 1 and the 
question, whether the Senate should be 
composed of 20 members first taken. — 
Negatived, 1 16 to 43. 2 

Mr. A. Wolcott, then moved to try the 
question, whether the mode of election 
should be by districts — Adjourned to 8 
o'clock to morrow morning. 



Historical Notes, September 7, 1818 

In the manuscript Journal, the clerk initially repeated the results of the first roll call vote in the 
space for the second vote, but attached the correct names for the 48-1 16 vote on two separate 
sheets of paper. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 7, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 15, 1818, and the Mercury; Sept. 15, 1818. 

1. decided] divided Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

2. 43] 48 Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 229 

[Convention Journal, September 8, 1818] 

Tuesday September 8th — 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

Mr. M. Warren obtained leave to withdraw his motion for amendment last 
under consideration — 

The convention then resumed the consideration of the 4th Section of the 3d 
Article relating to the number , and manner of choosing Senators, and 

On motion of Mr. Edwards to strike out the word " twelve " and insert in lieu 
thereof the word " sixteen ," and — on motion of Mr. Fairchild to insert the 
number " fourteen " instead of " twelve ," both motions were successively deter- 
mined in the negative — 

The question was then taken on the passage of the 4th Section as amended 
being in these words "The Senate shall consist of twelve members to be chosen 
annually by the electors," and was determined in the affirmative — 

The convention proceeded to consider the 5th and 6th Sections of the 3d Ar- 
ticle, which were read, and on motion of Mr. Treadwell to amend the same by 
striking out both Sections and to insert in lieu thereof, several Sections, making 
provision for the meeting of the electors in September annually for the purpose 
of choosing Representatives to the General Assembly, and placing twenty 
men, from the body of electors in nomination for Senators, out of which twenty 
men number or nomination the Electors should, in the month of May next suc- 
ceeding, annually elect twelve Senators, which involved the question of s emi - 
annual elections , in opposition to annual elections as reported by the Commit - 
tee — a division of the amendment was ordered & the question taken on the 1st 
part thereof providing " That the electors meet in the month of September annu- 
ally & elect their Representatives &c." and was determined in the by yeas and 
nays as follows — 

For the motion Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, S. Pitkin, Reed, H. Terry, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buel, Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchel, 
Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Griffing, Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, 
Osborn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, Braman, Whiting, L. Sanford, 
Burton, Bennet, R. W. Williams, Payne, Frost, Fuller, Matthewson, Ingalls, 
Learned, Nichols, McLellan, Childs, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, 
Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battle, 
C. Butler-Swan-Everett, A. Hinsdale, W Battle-Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, 
Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford-Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill-Alvord, 
Root, Edgerton-Willey-B. Phelps-Talcott— 80 Yeas . 



230 public records September 8, 

Against the motion — 

Messrs. Sylvester Wells, Saml. Hart, Norton-R. Pitkin, Dixon-Saml. 
Wells-Hubbard-Wilcox-Barker-Elisha Phelps-J. Pettibone Jr.-Jones-Mar- 
shall-Josiah Phelps, Smith-Hull-Shelton-R. Pierpont-D. Pierpont- 
Andrews-Marks-Miles-Adams-Ives-Manwaring-Learned-Lanman-Fox-J. 
Hyde-Daboll-Wm. Williams-M. Warren-Brockway-Comstock-C. Smith- 
W. M. Randall Jr.-Palmer-Kimball-Wm. Randall-Gallup-Avery-Hill- 
Tomlinson-Starr-Cook-Lacey-C. Sanford-Lockwood-Wm. Shelton- 
Seeley-Barnum-Botsford-Fairman-M. Gregory-Eversley-King-Gilbert- 
Stevens-Weed-Edwards-Fairchild-Graves-A. Gregory-Sturges-Webb- 
Waldo-L. Warren-Hutchins-Tilden-Babcock-Braman-Gurley-Woodward- 
Dunlap-Hall-Keigwin-Welch-Burrall-Douglas-Pinney-A. Phelps-St. 
John-Merwin-Williams-Trowbridge-D. Johnson-S. Church-Marshall- 
Bushnel-Wolcott-Stow-Sage-Hurd-Lyman-Guernsey-Chapman-Young- 
Burrows-Peters-E. Hyde-N. Johnson-Paul-Sibley-Brigham — 104 nays — 

And so the motion was lost — 

The 3d Article was theft read through with the amendments aftd which pro- 
vided for two stated Sessions , (instead of one stated Session as reported by the 
Committee) and changing the time to the 2d Thursday and so forth. 

On motion of Mr. Edwards for the reconsideration of the vote amending the 
2d Section varying the original it, so as to provide for " two stated SessionsT'l 
of the General Assembly annually instead of one stated annual Session , as re- 
ported by the Comy.[;] it was determined in the affirmative. The amendment 
was then stricken out and the Section passed as originally reported — 

On motion of Mr. Fairchild further to amend the 4th Section, by adding a 
clause, so that the whole Section should be read thus — 

"The Senate shall consist of twelve Senators, provided that the General As- 
sembly shall within two years after the taking of the next census increase the 
number of Senators, not exceeding twenty one, and shall also, within said time, 
divide the State into such number of Senatorial districts, not less than seven, as 
they may think proper; in each of which districts there shall thereafter be 
chosen, by the electors thereof, such number of Senators as shall be allotted to 
such district, in a manner to be by law, directed" — it was determined in the de - 
termined in the negative by yeas and nays as follows — 

For the motion, Messrs. Sylvester Wells, Saml. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, 
Saml. Wells. Hubbard. Wilcox, Barker, Elisha Phelps, J. Pettibone Jr., Mar- 
shall, C. Shelton, R. Pierpont, D. Pierpont, Marks-Manwaring-Lanman- 
Daboll-M. Warren-Brock way-Wm. Randall Jr.-Palmer-Kimball-Wm. 
Randall-Avery-Tomlinson-Cook-Sanford-T. S. Wells-Wm. Shelton- 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



231 



Stevens-Fairchild-Webb-Waldo-Hutchins-Tilden-Freeman-Gurley-Wood- 
ward-Welch-Stow-Sage-Chapman- Young-Burrows-Peters — 45 Yeas — 

Against the motion — Messrs. Hooker-S. Pitkin-Jencks-Reed-H. Terry- 
Dixon-T. Pitkin-Treadwell-A. Church-Treat-Buel-Whittlesey-Grannis- 
Jones-Morse-Mitchel-Lusk-N. Smith-Fowler-Rose-Hull- C. Shclton - 
Riggs-Farnham-Griffin-Todd-Benedict-Bull-Gunn-Osborn-Miles- 
Adams-Thomas-Tolls-Ives-Learned-Fox-Deming-Isham-J. Hyde-Abel- 
Wm. Williams-Braman-Comstock-C. Smith-Gallup-Hill-Starr-Lacey- 
Seeley-Barnum-Botsford-Fairman-M. Gregory-Eversley-Whiting- 
Sanford-King-Gilbert-Weed-Edwards-Graves, Burton-A. Gregory- 
Bennett-Sturges-R. W. Williams-Payne-Frost-Fuller-Griffin-L. Warren- 
Babcock-Dunlap-Matthewson-Ingalls-Hall-Larned-Nichols-Keigwin- 
McLellan-Childs-Hayden-Mills-Lambert-Burrall-Douglas-Pinney-A. 
Phelps-Swift-Burnham-Hale, North-Brace-Hopkins-St. John-Austin- 
Marsh-Merwin-Williams-A. Pettibone-J. Battel-Butler-Trowbridge-D. 
Johnson-S. Church-Swan-Everett-Hinsdale-Wm. Battel-Marshal- 
Bushnel-Tallmadge-Baldwin-Platt-Miller-A. Wolcott-Brainerd-Hunting- 
ton-Hurd-Lyman-Hungerford-Elliot-Lane-Nott-Sill-Alvord-Root- 
Edgerton-B. Phelps-Ephraim Hyde-N. Johnson-Crawford-Paul-Talcott- 
Sibley-Brigham — 136 Nays. 

On motion of Mr. Mitchel the 1st line of the 1 1th Section was amended so 
that instead of the words " The doors of each house shall be open " it should 
stand thus ' The debates of each house shall be public ." 

The Convention having after approving the 1st, 3d, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 
9th, 10th & 1 1th Sections of the 3d Article , as amended and restoring the 2nd 
Section , as it was reported, — proceeded to the consideration of the 4th Article 
relating to the "Executive Department." The other amendments, only changed 
the phraseology, and are not, therefore noted on the Journal. 

The 1st Section was read and approved as before amended — 

The 2nd Section was read, & various amendments proposed, and while 
under consideration the Convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 8- 
o'Clock— 

[Convention Debates, September 8, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Tuesday morning Sept. 8. 
The question proposed by Mr. 
Wolcott was taken up, when Mr. Warren 



[American Mercury] 

Tuesday morning. 

Mr. Warrens amendment was with- 
drawn. Two propositions were 



232 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September8, 



requested leave of the house to take back 
his amendment, which was granted. 

Mr. Edwards then moved to amend, 
by inserting "sixteen" instead of 
"twelve" which did not pass. 

Mr. Fairchild, moved "fourteen," 
which was rejected, and the section as 
previously amended was approved by a 
full vote. 

Sections, 5 and 6, were then taken up 
and Mr. Treadwell, moved to strike them 
out. and substitute the following new 
sections. 

"5th. The Electors in the several 
towns shall convene sometime in the 
month of September annually, when they 
shall first elect the person, or persons to 
represent the town in the next General 
Assembly; and shall then proceed to give 
in their ballots for twenty persons out of 
the body of electors, of not less than 25 
years of age, to stand in nomination for 
senators in May next following: the pre- 
siding officer shall receive the votes, and 
with the assistance of the civil authority 
and selectmen of the town, or such of 
them as shall be present, shall count the 
votes and declare them in open meeting, 
and shall make out duplicate lists of the 
persons voted for, and of the number of 
votes for each, which shall be certified 
by him: one of which shall be delivered 
to the town clerk, and the other, within 
ten days after said meeting, shall be de- 
livered under seal, either to the 
Secretary, or to the Sheriff of the County 
in which said town is situate which copy 
shall be directed to the Secretary, with a 
superscription, expressing the contents, 
and the sheriff who shall receive such 
votes shall within 15 days after said 
meeting deliver or cause them to be de- 
livered to the Secretary; and thereupon 
the Treasurer. Secretary and Controller, 



successively made, to increase the 
number of Senators, one to 16 and the 
other to 14; but both failed; and the sec- 
tion passed as reported. 



— Mr. Treadwell offered an amendment 
to the fifth section; the object of which 
was to revive the old law, directing that 
the Council should be selected from a 
nomination previously made. 

Mr. Stevens opposed the amendment, 
on the ground that: by a nomination on 
this plan, the freemen would be confined 
as they had been, to 20 names; from 
which 12 must be selected. These names 
he said, were generally placed on the list 
by a few persons, who selected such as 
pleased them best. The freemen were un- 
acquainted with the characters of the 
candidates: and could not obtain that in- 
formation concerning them which was 
necessary to the making of a proper 
choice. After the names had been pub- 
lished and the 20 proposed had been 
elected; they were then called on at. an- 
other election, to take 12 from the list; 
thus incurring the expence of two elec- 
tions, when one would have answered 
equally well. The section as reported 
would give to the electors an opportunity 
of choosing; — not from 20 men: but 
from the whole State. It would enable 
them to elect men from their own neigh- 
borhoods with whom they were 
personally acquainted, or from any other 
part of the country. By this nomination 
they might be obliged in some instances 
to vote for Councillors whom they did 
not know; and who perhaps did not un- 
derstand their interests. We can hazard 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



233 



shall canvass the votes publicly, and the 
twenty persons who shall have the great- 
est number of votes, shall be declared to 
be chosen, to stand in nomination for 
election in May next following, and a 
suitable number of lists of such nomina- 
tion, shall be printed and transmitted to 
the General Assembly, in October next 
following, for the use of the members, a 
copy of which shall be sent by a member 
to each town, to be deposited in the 
office of town clerk. 

§ 6. The Electors of the several towns 
shall also convene, in the month of April 
annually, when they shall first choose 
their representative or Representatives to 
the next then session of the General As- 
sembly; each freeman shall or may, then 
give in his ballot for the Governour, Lt. 
Governour, and 12 Senators, of those 
who stand in nomination, and also for 
Treasurer, and Secretary in order here 
named, successively, which shall be cor- 
rected, certified and transmitted to the 
Secretary, either directly or through the 
medium of the sheriff, and publicly can- 
vassed as is directed in the preceding 
section, for making out the nomination 
for Senators; and the person who shall 
have a majority of the votes of the elec- 
tors for Governour, Lt. Governour, 
Treasurer and Secretary shall, by the 
canvassing committee be declared to be 
chosen; and the twelve persons con- 
tained in nomination, who shall have the 
greatest number of their votes, shall in 
like manner be declared to be chosen 
Senators for the year ensuing. But in 
cases where no choice shall have been 
made by the Electors, in cases of an 
equality of votes, the Senate and house 
of Representatives on one common 
floor, shall by ballot designate, which of 
the persons, having such equal numbers 



nothing by electing without a nomina- 
tion; and if labour could be considered as 
money, we should save much by it; in 
avoiding an unnecessary waste of time 
which would be incurred in voting twice 
for the members of the Upper House. For 
these reasons he could not support the 
amendment. 

Mr. Treadwell, observed — That a 
nomination would be made out by the 
people or by a few men. The latter mode 
would serve to keep up party 
animosit[i]es, while the former would 
present a complete diagram of the State: 
a full expression of the public will. We 
had long practised on the plan which he 
proposed. The people had been accus- 
tomed in the first place to elect men to 
stand in nomination and then to select 12 
from the whole number nominated. If 
they were not acquainted with their char- 
acters; they had a sufficient time to make 
the necessary enquiries; and might 
obtain the information which they 
wanted; from friends or acquaintances 
on whose words they could rely. It 
served as a test to the characters of the 
candidates by bringing them before the 
people and exciting enquiry. — And we 
have experienced many benefits, result- 
ing from it. To this we owe our present able 
delegation in Congress; which had raised 
the reputation of Connecticut among her 
sister States, and was our boast. From this 
source had resulted a state of things which 
had rendered us happy at home, and re- 
spectable abroad. It had given rise to a 
golden age; and he hoped that should it be 
abandoned, nothing worse than a silver 
age would succeed. 

Judge Mitchell made a few remarks 
in favor of the amendment on nearly the 
same grounds which Mr. Treadwell 
assumed. 



234 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 8, 



of votes, shall be declared to be elected; 
the result of the canvass shall be returned 
to the General Assembly, on the first day 
of the session, and shall then, if the elec- 
tion of any of the officers aforesaid, shall 
not have been made, be completed and 
consummated in like manner afore- 
said — But no person shall be eligible to 
the office of Governor or Lt. Governour 
unless from the body of electors and 
shall have attained to the age of thirty 
years. ["] 



Judge Edwards — Rose only to make 
a few remarks; he did not wish to enter 
into any discussion. We were called 
upon to vote the amendment of the Hon. 
gentleman from Farmington [John 
Treadwell]. It was a complicated one, 
and was intended to effect something 
more than the mode of election. He was 
not prepared to vote for every part of it; 
and he trusted that other gentlemen were 
not. It had been decided by a casting vote 
of the President that we should have two 
sessions of the General Assembly in 
each year; but, it had not yet been de- 
cided that we should have two elections 
within that term. — Yet the gentlemans 
motion involved this. — Why have two 
elections in a year? If with a view to the 
dispatch of public business; this object, 
would be accomplished as well by two 
sessions, without a second election. — 
The frequency of elections proposed 
could answer no good purpose. It would 
only serve to excite party spirit and 
cabal: to keep the people in continual 
tumult; and was an additional expense to 
us of from 20, to $40,000 per annum.— It 
was then proposed to divide the ques- 
tion, and take it first on that part of the 
section as amended relating to two 
elections. 

Mr. Austin — was in favor of two elec- 
tions; and also of the mode proposed for 
choosing the Council. It was a mode he 
thought which rendered the seats of 
Councillors permanent and prevented 
rotation in office. He closed by speaking 
in favor of the old Constitution or form 
of government. 

Judge Edwards — Said that he did not 
rise 1 to trouble the Convention by any 
lengthy discussion: But so much had 
been said by some gentlemen, on the 
subject of our "Old Constitution," that he 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



235 



would beg leave to offer a very few re- 
marks on what had fallen from them in 
adverting to this instrument. It had been 
described as one of the most perfect 
models of government that had ever been 
devised by man; under its benign influ- 
ence they informed us, we had enjoyed 
the greatest happiness. — What is this 
boasted Constitution? — If gentlemen 
would attend he would answer this ques- 
tion by reading it. {He then read the 
original compact which was framed by 
the three towns of Hartford, 
Weathersfield and Windsor. And after 
pointing out in the most obvious manner, 
the many essential violations of it, by the 
Legislature; and exposing with a force 
and penetration of reasoning which it 
was not in our power to follow with the 
pen, and which could only be felt in its 
full extent, by those who had the plea- 
sure of hearing him; he proceeded. } This 
compact then has never been considered 
of any validity. It never was the Constitu- 
tion of the State of Connecticut. It was 
framed 2 for the government of Three 
Towns; and for that of such persons as 
should in future voluntarily join them- 
selves to the colony. There was at the 
time when this compact was framed, an- 
other Colony at New Haven; possessing 
a distinct & independent government. 
Over this, the colony of Hartford never 
attempted to exercise any power, until 
they had obtained a charter from Charles 
2d, granting to them a jurisdiction over 
it. This Charter was obtained without the 
knowledge or consent of New Haven, 
and was forced upon that Colony, by 
Hartford. The Governor and General As- 
sembly; — the people 3 of New-Haven 
Colony protested against this act of in- 
justice and never voluntarily united with 
Hartford. How then can this be called the 



236 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 8, 



Constitution of the State of Connecticut? 
— But it is said that we have been happy 
under this old government. No doubt; 
those gentlemen who had been so lavish 
of their praises, had been happy under it. 
They had reaped the benefits of it. One 
gentleman the other day, with heartfelt 
satisfaction and almost with tears in his 
eyes, spoke of the sweets which he had 
enjoyed in the Honourable Upper House. 
And another said that he had been twelve 
or fourteen years in office under the 
Nomination. When such gentlemen pro- 
nounced panegyrics on the 
government. — When they told us of the 
happiness they had enjoyed under it. — 
He did not doubt them. — They had been 
happy. He sincerely believed it. — But 
the people who did not experience the 
benefits derived from office, were of a 
different opinion. The council were said 
to be elected by the freemen. What was 
the fact? The nomination was made out 
by a few men; perhaps twenty or thirty. 
Those on the list were recommended by 
their followers and the people having 
little other information as it regards their 
characters; than that which was to be col- 
lected from the evidence of their friends, 
were induced to vote for them. They then 
entered the Council Chamber; and pro- 
ceeded to Legislate under the veil of 
impenetrable secrecy. No one could 
enter the doors of the Upper House to 
learn their motives or their reasons; and 
no member of that body would tell what 
was done there. They originated 4 laws 
themselves; approved or rejected 5 the 
acts of the House of Representatives; 
canvassed the characters of candidates 
for office. And directed how appoint- 
ments should be made, without deigning 
to assign any reason for their proceed- 
ings. They could controul the Lower 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



237 



On motion of Mr. Edwards the 
amendment was divided and the ques- 
tion first taken on the first paragraph — 
which involves the question, whether 
there shall be two elections in the year, 
which was taken by Yeas and Nays, and 
negatived 104 to 76 — With leave Mr. 
T — took back the amendment, and the 
convention adjourned to 2 P. M. 

Afternoon— Sections 6 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 
and 11, were approved and accepted 
without debate. 

Mr. Edwards, then moved to recon- 
sider the vote, which had been taken on 
the 2nd section, which was done; he then 
moved to erase the amendment which had 
been made: "there shall be two stated ses- 
sions in each year, &c." and to insert the 
original section: which was done. 

Mr. Stow, then moved to amend the 
4th section, by erasing all after the 
words, "consist of,' & inserting "the 
lieut. Governour, and 12 Senators, which 
Senators shall be chosen annually by the 
electors" — Withdrawn. 

Mr. Fairchild, then moved to amend 
the section by adding provided, that the 
General Assembly, shall within two 
years, after the taking the next census of 
the United States, increase the number of 
Senators, not exceeding 21, and shall 
also within said time, divide the state 
into such number of senatorial districts 



house, for no act could pass without their 
sanction. In fact they were a complete ar- 
istocracy. And when once seated in their 
places, it was not an easy matter to dis- 
place them. This plan of nominating was 
a cunning device to secure that body; by 
securing their acts from public investiga- 
tion. But it was unnecessary to enlarge; 
his strength began to fail and he would 
say no more. 

The amendment was negatived. 104 
Nays to 76 Yeas. — Adjourned. 



Tuesday Afternoon, Sept. 8. 

Art. 3d. The 8th, 9th, 10th and 11th 
sections were severally passed, with 
slight alterations. 



238 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 8, 



not less than 7, as they may think proper, 
in each of which districts, there shall 
thereafter be chosen by the electors 
thereof such number of senators, as shall 
be allotted to such district in a manner to 
be by law directed. 

Mr. T. Pitkin, remarked that this was 
an important question; one which in- 
volved principles, and on which he 
wished to record his name; he would 
therefore move that the question when 
taken should be taken by Yeas and 
[N]ays, which was done as follows, and 
lost— 1 36 to 45. [Roll Call Vote] 

Desultory debates were had on all 
questions of amendment, some of which 
were interesting, but the limits of a news- 
paper, will not allow to give them; we 
intend however, to keep the minutes 
which may be of some use hereafter. 

The Convention went back to the 2d 
Section of this article, and spent much 
time in mending 7 it; they however ad- 
journed without taking the question, to 
give time for redrafting it. 



EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT. 

Art 4th. The first section was passed 
without any amendment. On motion of 
Mr. Treadwell, the 2d section was so 
amended as to make the votes returnable to 
the next General Assembly, after having 
been canvassed as provided for in the sec- 
tion. By a further amendment, proposed by 
Mr. T Pitkin, the General Assembly are 
required to publish the votes. 

Adjourned. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 239 



Historical Notes, September 8, 1818 

The Couranfs account of the day's debate includes the two substitute sections on elections to 
the House and Senate proposed by John Treadwell; in effect, and as the Mercury's account noted, 
they were an attempt to preserve the old two-stage nomination and election process, for which 
see S.R., XVIII, xlvi-xlvii. During his ensuing comments on the "Old Constitution," Pierpont 
Edwards read the Fundamental Orders of 1639 ("the original compact" between the three towns) 
and cited, to support his contention that the state did not have a true constitution, the originally 
separate status of the Connecticut and New Haven colonies, the amalgamation of the two colo- 
nies under the Royal Charter of 1662, and New Haven's resistance to that union. 

The two newspaper accounts record the number in favor of the first section of Treadwell's 
motion as 76 rather than the 80 tallied in the Convention's Journal. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 8, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 15, 1818, and the Mercury; Sept. 15, 22, 
1818. 

1. rise] wish Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

2. framed] formed Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

3. by Hartford. The Governor and General Assembly; — the people] by Hartford, the Gover- 
nor and General Assembly. The people Herald, Sept. 22, 1818. 

4. originated] originate Mercury; emended from the Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

5. rejected] repealed Times, Sept. 15, 1818. 

6. Sections] Section Courant; emended from the Journal, Sept. 15, 1818. 

7. mending] amending Mirror, Sept, 14, 1818. 



240 public records September 9, 

[Convention Journal, September 9, 1818] 

Wednesday — Septemr. 9th — 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read and corrected — 

The Convention resumed the consideration of the 2d Section of the 4th 
Article — 

On motion of Mr. Lanman, the whole Section was stricken out, and the fol- 
lowing substitute adopted viz. — 

Sec. 2d — At the meetings of the Electors in the respective towns in the 
month of April, in each year, immediately after the election of Senators, the 
presiding officers shall call upon the electors to present ballots for him whom 
they would elect to be Governor with his name fairly written. When such bal- 
lots shall have been received, and counted in the presence of the electors, 
duplicate lists of the persons voted for, and of the number of votes given for 
each, shall be made and certified by the presiding officer, one of which lists 
shall be deposited in the office of the Town Clerk within three days, and the 
other within ten days after said election, shall be transmitted to the Secretary, 
or to the Sheriff of the County in which such election shall have been held. The 
Sheriff receiving said votes shall deliver, or cause them to be delivered, to the 
Secretary within fifteen days next after said election. The votes so returned 
shall be counted, by the Treasurer, Secretary and Controller, within the month 
of April. A fair list of the persons and numbers of votes given for each together 
with the returns of the presiding officers, shall be, by the Treasurer, Secretary, 
and Controller, made and returned to laid before the General Assembly, then 
next to be holden, on the first day of the Session thereof; and said Assembly 
shall, after examination of the same, declare the person who has a majority of 
the votes returned as aforesaid, to be legally chosen, and give him notice ac- 
cordingly. If no person shall have a majority of the whole number of said votes, 
or if two or more persons shall have an equal and the greatest number of said 
votes, then said Assembly, on the second day of their Session, by joint ballot of 
both Houses, shall proceed, without debate, to choose a Governor, from a list 
of the names of the two persons having the greatest number of votes, or of the 
names of the persons having an equal and highest number of votes so returned 
as aforesaid. The General Assembly shall by law prescribe the manner in 
which all questions concerning the election of a Governor or Lieutenant Gov- 
ernor shall be determined. 

The 3d Section was read approved — 

On motion of Mr. Gallup, the 4th Section was amended by inserting the words 
" Senators & Representatives " after the words Lieut. Governor in the 2d line. — 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 241 

The 5th & 6th Sections were read & approved as reported . 

The 7th Section was read & approved as before amended, the words " of the 
General Assembly " having been inserted in the 2d line after the word " Houses ." 

The 8th and 9th Sections were read and approved — 

On motion of N. Terry the 10th Section was stricken out, and the following 
words inserted as a substitute viz. "The Governor shall have power to grant re- 
prieves after conviction, in all cases, except those of impeachment, until the 
end of the next Session of the General Assembly & no longer " — 

The 1 1th Section was read & approved as reported. — 

On motion of Mr. Swan the 12th Section was amended by striking out the 1st 
clause and substituting these words "A Secretary shall be chosen next after the 
Treasurer, and in the same manner ", and on motion of Mr. S. Church, this Section 
was further amended by inserting next after the above amendment these words, 
" and the votes for the Secretary shall be returned to, and counted, canvassed and 
declared by the Treasurer and comptroller " and was approved as amended. 

The 13th Section was read as before amended — and on motion of Mr. 
Baldwin was further amended by i nserting the words " and transmit it to the 
Secretary " in the 4th line. So that the whole Section as amended stands thus — 

"Every Bill which shall have passed both Houses of the General Assembly 
shall be presented to the Governor. If he approves, he shall sign, and transmit, it 
to the Secretary, but if not, he shall return it to the House in which it originated, 
with his objections, which shall be entered on the Journals of the House, who 
shall proceed to reconsider the Bill. If after such reconsideration, that House 
shall again pass it, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the other House, 
which shall also reconsider it. If approved, 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 and against the Bill shall be entered on the 
Journals of each House respectively. If the bill shall not be returned by the 
Governor within three days, Sunday's excepted, after it shall have been pre- 
sented to him, the same shall be a law in like manner as if he had signed it; 
unless the General Assembly, by their adjournment prevents its return, in 
which case it shall not be a law.["] The question on the Section as amended was 
taken by yeas & nays. Approved by 127 yeas to 52 Nays . 

[Yeas— Syl. Wells, N. Terry, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Jenks, Dixon, Sam. 
Wells, Wilcox, Barker, Buell, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Whittlesey, Jones, 
Mitchell, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, N. Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, Todd, R. Pierpont, 
Clark, Benedict, Gunn, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, Marks, Miles, 
Adams, Thomas, Ives, Manwaring, A. Learned, Fox, Daboll, W. Williams, 
Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall, jun., 
Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, 



242 public records September 9, 

Lacey, Lockwood, T. Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, 
Eversley, King, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, 
Bennett, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, Payne, Fuller, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, 
Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Matthewson, Hall, G. Learned, 
Keigwin, McClellan, Welch, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, North, Hopkins, 
St. John, Merwin, J. Williams, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Trowbridge, D. Johnson, 
S. Church, Everett, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Baldwin, Miller, A. Wolcott, Stow, 
Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Hungerford, Chapman, Young, Edgerton, Willey, Burrows, 
Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham. 

Nays — Hooker, S. Pitkin, Reed, H. Terry, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, 
Treat, Grannis, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Griffing, Bull, Andrews, 
Tolls, Lanman, Deming, Isham, J. Hyde, Abel, Whiting, L. Sanford, R. Wil- 
liams, Frost, Griffin, Ingalls, Nichols, Childs, Hayden, Swift, Burnham, Brace, 
Austin, Marsh, Butler, Swan, A. Hinsdale, W. Battell, Tallmadge, Piatt, 
Brainerd, Huntington, Elliot, Lane, Sill, Alvord, Root, B. Phelps, Talcott.]* 

The 14th, 15th, 16th, 17th, 18th and 19th Sections were read and after 
verbal amendments approved — 

The 20th Section was read and amended on motion of Mr. G. Tomlinson so 
as to stand thus "A Sheriff shall be appointed, by the General Assembly, in 
each county, by the General Assembly, who shall hold his office for three years, 
"removable by said Assembly; and in case the Sheriff of any county shall die or 
resign, the Governor may fill the vacancy occasioned thereby, until the same shall 
be filled by the General Assembly" — and was approved as amended. — 

The 21st Section was read and approved . — 

The Convention then proceeded to the consideration of the 5th Article Re- 
ported by the Committee relating to the " Judicial Department ." 

The 1st and 2d Sections were read and approved. — 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott made a motion to amend the 3d Section by 
striking out all the words after the words " General Assembly " in the 4th line, 
except the last clause of the Section, but before any decision thereon 

The convention adjourned until 8 o'Clock tomorrow morning. — 

*The names of members voting in the affirmative, and in the negative on 
this motion are marked & will appear on the Roll of Delegates. 

Hartford 

September 16th AD 1818. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



243 



The within and foregoing Journal is correct and true so far as concerns the 
proceedings in Convention to the tenth ninth day of September inclusive. 

attest. James Lanman 
Robert Fairchild, Clerks 



Memorandum — 

N.B. In several instances, when I had not time to enter at length on the Jour- 
nal the yeas & nays and the names of the members voting for and against a 
motion the substance of the question tried was written on the line marking di- 
viding the yeas and nays on the Roll of Delegates hereto annexed, in such 
manner that on examination of the 1 st page of sd. Roll of Delegates the persons 
voting for or against any motion may be known. — Robert Fairchild, Clerk 
Hartford, Septemr. 16 AD. 1818. — 



[Convention Debates, September 9, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courani] 

Wednesday Morning, Sept. 9. 

Mr. Lanman offered the following 
new section as a substitute for the 2d 
which was accepted. 



[American Mercury] 
EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT. 

Wednesday Morning, Sept. 9. 



Art. 4th. The 5th section was 
amended by inserting the words "they 
shall be" after the word "when" in the 
second line. Mr. N. Terry offered the fol- 
lowing as a substitute for the 10th 
section. "The Governor shall grant re- 
prieves after conviction in all cases, 
except those of impeachment, until the 
end of the next session of the General 
Assembly; and no longer." — This substi- 
tute was adopted. The 12th section was 
amended, by directing, that the Secretary 
should be chosen in the same manner as 
the Treasurer. Some debate of no 



244 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



The following sections to the 13th, 
were adopted with some amendments; and 
on motion to strike out the 1 3th, it was car- 
ried by Yeas and Nays — 126 to 52. 



Afternoon. — The sections next fol- 
lowing were approved and accepted up 
to the 20th, which Mr. Treadwell moved 
to amend so as to read, "a sheriff shall be 
appointed in each county by the 
Governour, who shall be answerable to 
him for his conduct in office, and remov- 
able from office for reasonable cause, at 
his discretion["] — Negatived 102 to 66. 

Mr. Tomlinson then moved to amend 
the section by adding the following: 
"And in case the sheriff in any county 
shall die, or resign, the Governor may fill 
the vacancy made thereby, until the same 
shall be filled by the General Assembly" 
— Voted. 

Mr. H. Terry moved to further amend 
by erasing the original part of the section, 
and substituting, "the Governor shall 
nominate and appoint a sheriff in each 
county, by and with the advice and con- 
sent of the Senate. ["]— Lost, 100 to 74. 

It was then moved to erase "three 
years," and insert "one year'* — Lost. 

The question was then taken on the 
section as amended and carried; the re- 
maining section was approved. 



importance occurred on the 13th section, 
which was passed by yeas and nays. Yeas 
127, Nays 52. 
Adjourned. 



EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT. 

Wednesday Afternoon. Sept. 9. 

Art. 4th. Mr. Treadwell offered an 
amendment to the 14th section, the 
object of which was to incorporate the 
Governor with the Upper House. But it 
did not pass. On motion of Mr. 
Tomlinson, the 20th section was 
amended, so as to authorise the Gover- 
nor to fill any vacancies that may occur 
in the office of Sheriff, by death or resig- 
nation. The different sections of this 
Article were passed, as amended. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



245 



ARTICLE FIFTH 

Sections 1st and 2d, approved and 
accepted. 

§ 3d. Mr. A. Wolcott, moved to erase 
all after the word "Assembly" in the 4th 
line; to the word 1 "Annually" in the 13th 
line, to try the question of the independ- 
ence of the judiciary. He said it would be 
observe, that the section as reported, pro- 
vides, that the Judges hold their offices 
during good behav[i]our; as the holding 
of this office by such a tenure is un- 
known in Connecticut, a change of 
tenure, will possess only a malign char- 
acter, and operate with malign influence 
on the people: what is there in the nature 
or functions of this office, which re- 
quires the independence of the 
incumbent, more than any other? what 
does the judge differ in this respect from 
the legislator? I have heard it said, that he 
must be above influence; out of the reach 
of party feeling; that his judgments may 
be more just, and more to be relied on. I 
do not deny that party spirit has influ- 
ence upon Judges; but the question is, 
will the term of his office make the influ- 
ence less? In England, when the Judges 
formerly held their appointments, during 
the pleasure of the crown 2 — I know it 
was a great point gained to the people, to 
divest the crown of the power of 
dismission. It would be so in this country 
were our Judges appointed by the chief 
magistrate; if the chief magistrate had 
their appointment and removal, the case 
would be different; is not a legislature, 
above caprice? But Judges should be 
above influence — agreed; they are liable 
to party feelings — agreed; would they be 
less so, if they were not appointed annu- 
ally by the legislature? Judges are men; 
and the tenure of their office cannot 
change their character. Carry the idea 



THE JUDICIARY. 

Art. 5th. Mr. A. Wolcott proposed an 
amendment to the 1st [i.e, 3rd] section, 
requiring that all the Judges of the sev- 
eral courts should be appointed annually. 

This section as reported, (said Mr. 
W.) provides that the judges of the Supe- 
rior and Supreme Courts, shall hold their 
offices during good behavior, liable to be 
removed on impeachment, or on an ad- 
dress of two thirds of the Legislature. 
This is a novel doctrine in Connecticut, 
and is opposed to our former practice. I 
do not believe that the people are pre- 
pared to receive it; and as there is 
nothing in this, more than any other 
office in the State that requires the tenure 
of good behaviour; I for one, am opposed 
to it. I have heard, that judges should be 
raised above the feelings and the influ- 
ence of party; so that they may act with 
impartiality; and we are told, that if we 
establish them during good behaviour, 
this will have the desired effect. — I will 
not deny that judges may and have been 
influenced by party motives. But will 
this raise them above such influence? 
Will they not be liable to party preju- 
dices, if you make them independent, as 
they would be, in holding their stations 
by appointments from year to year? Will 
not their feelings be the same? In Eng- 
land, where judges are appointed by the 
crown, this tenure may be of some ad- 
vantage. It is a gain to the people, 
because, although they are created by the 
King, yet he cannot remove them; and 
they stand as a barrier against the prerog- 
atives of royalty. But in Connecticut 
there is no need of this check; all offices 
come from the people. 3 And they have 
the remedy in their own hands. If their 
officers do not please them; if they do not 



246 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



further; if the Judge is not acceptable to 
the people, who shall he be accountable 
to for his conduct? If his judgments are 
warped, or if he wants understanding in 
the discharge of his functions, how shall 
he be removed; his office is important, 
but he cannot be impeached because so- 
ciety have no confidence in him, as a 
man of talents; a man cannot be im- 
peached for a lack of understanding; but 
why not make your legislature perma- 
nent? The functions of a legislature are 
far more important than those of a court 
of justice; a court may oppress the 
people, but they cannot overturn the 
state. In proportion to the importance of 
any officer to society, is the importance 
of his independence in office. If this is 
false reasoning it is an error of the head 
and not of the heart; I have given this 
summary view, merely as an expression 
of my opinion. 



behave well, they can be removed, and 
others will be found to fill their places. It 
is important, however, that they should 
not be under party influence. — 
Agreed — But I will ask any man, 
whether he believes that, if the judges 
had not been dependent, they would have 
been less under the influence of party? 
They would be influenced by their own 
feelings. And if you render them inde- 
pendent, they will go further in indulging 
their prejudices. — I do not believe that 
any man in this State ever gave an unjust 
decision, from fear of losing his office. 

Society should have confidence in 
judges. — But if they are appointed 
during good behaviour, it can be no 
ground of impeachment, that the people 
have no confidence in them. Why should 
judges be more independent than a Leg- 
islature? Their functions are not more 
important — A Legislature should be 
made independent, however, because 
they can do more mischief. Suppose our 
representatives were to be made in this 
way, the people being their judges. 
Nobody would agree to this. But the two 
cases are parallel. We seem to proceed 
entirely with a view to party. We wish to 
raise the judges above the operations of 
party spirit. If there were no other con- 
sideration than that to be drawn from the 
extent of the office, this would be a suffi- 
cient one in my mind. The natural 
indolence of man would render judges 
more inattentive, when they knew that 
they could not be removed without cause 
assigned, or an address of two thirds of 
the Legislature without cause, than they 
would be if they were to be appointed an- 
nually. — These are my opinions on the 
subject. 



1818 



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247 



Mr. H. Terry. This section provides 
for establishing supreme, superior, and 
other judicial courts, for the safety and 
happiness of the people: It provides that 
the supreme and superior courts shall 
hold their offices during good behavior. 
Sir, I am altogether in favor of this provi- 
sion; it contains no new principle. In 
most of the constitutions of the other 
states; New-Hampshire, Massachusetts, 
Virginia, North Carolina, South 
Carolina, Georgia, and New-Jersey; the 
principle of the independence of the ju- 
diciary is recognized. In Connecticut, 
Vermont and Rhode-Island only, are the 
judges appointed annually. It is not a 
question which was never taken up till 
now; no new tenure of office is proposed 
for the judiciary; but the report proposes 
to recognize a principle in the constitu- 
tion which has been found by wisdom 
and experience to answer the best pur- 
pose. Look at the other states; We hear 
no complaints from the independency of 
the judiciary; on the contrary, the people 
approve of the principle. The people of 
Connecticut have virtually approved of 
the principle, and now we are to declare 
it openly; we are to guard against a viola- 
tion of it. If the manners, and habits, and 
men, were to continue the same in Con- 
necticut as heretofore, we should need 
no guard, I confess. Our judges have 
always holden their offices during good 
behaviour. This I believe to be the fact; if 
not, it is unknown to me. Has not the 
principle, therefore, been sanctioned, 
and are we to be frightened out of it by 
the gentleman from Middletown [Alex- 
ander Wolcott], under the idea that the 
people will not adopt the constitution, if 
this principle is recognized in it? Sir, I 
deny that this is the sentiment of the 
people; the complaint has been, that 



H. Terry. I am in favor of this article 
as reported. It does not, as the gentleman 
who last spoke, seemed to think, involve 
any new principle. We find it in almost 
all the Constitutions of the United States; 
and the principle is recognized in our 
National Constitution. In legislating, the 
experience of other countries and that of 
our own, ought to have some weight with 
us. In those of our sister States, where the 
judges hold their seats by this tenure, the 
people approve it. And we hear no com- 
plaints of their Judiciary. They are well 
satisfied with the administration of Jus- 
tice, from impartial tribunals. The 
people of Connecticut also approve of it. 
The custom of continuing their judges in 
office until they become superannuated 
or resign, is in fact an appointment 
during good behaviour. And if we have 
had an impartial administration of jus- 
tice; if we have had upright and learned 
men upon the bench; it is [to] this prac- 
tice of rendering their seats permanent, 
that we should attribute it. This custom 
has been a part of our Constitution; and 
while the State remained free from party 
violence, there was no danger of its 
being abolished. But we have been lately 
convulsed by two parties struggling for 
power. The people have complained that 
the judges were under the influence of 
Lawyers who were members of the legis- 
lature. They have called for an 
independent Judiciary. And there can be 
no danger in placing our judges above 
the suspicion of this alleged influence, 
by an express provision. It is only recog- 
nizing a practice that has long prevailed 
in Connecticut. — What is the situation of 
those States where the judges are liable 
to be removed by the legislature, without 
any cause? I do not mean to cast any re- 
flections. But, Sir, what is the cause 4 in 



248 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



judges, subject to annual appointments, 
have been in fear of powerful lawyers in 
the legislature; and the complaint arises 
solely on account of their annual ap- 
pointment. What is the case when party 
spirit rages? parties fluctuate, and the ju- 
diciary is liable to change at every 
change of party. This has been eminently 
the case in Vermont: The spirit of the ju- 
diciary has been broken down; and will 
gentlemen say, that they are prepared to 
put their lives and property in the hands 
of a court, whose independence and in- 
tegrity are constantly assailed by the 
collisions of party? Sir, let us have a 
guard against this evil. The gentleman 
says, and I agree with him, that the 
power of removal being taken from the 
king of Great Britain, is a great barrier to 
the tyranny of the crown: but what is the 
judiciary? They have no power; they do 
not command the purse-strings or the 
sword; their power is merely nothing; 
they stand between the legislature and 
the people, and declare the law: Their sit- 
uation is unpleasant; men of influence in 
the legislature appear at their bar, and 
there may be cases in which they cannot 
resist their influence. I would place them 
above such influence. In the state of 
Kentucky, when a removal of a judge is 
requested, the reasons must be recorded 
on the journals; but I do not wish to make 
that motion. I would, however, adopt this 
section as reported. 

(Debate to be continued.) 



Vermont and in Rhode Island? Do we not 
hear continual complaints of the instabil- 
ity of their Courts? Their judges are the 
mere creatures of the legislature. Parties 
in those States are continually fluctuat- 
ing; they have frequent and violent 
changes; their judges are changed with 
their parties, and it is difficult to obtain 
men of talents and integrity, who will 
expose themselves to the humiliation of 
being turned out of office, as the caprice 
of varying factions may dictate. The de- 
pendent Judiciaries of those States, have 
been a theme of reproach to them in 
other parts of the Union. And, Sir, have 
we any reason to believe that we shall 
always be exempted from the evils which 
have been so severely felt in other 
States? Shall we have no parties? Will 
our legislature always continue to do 
right? 

The gentleman 5 from Middletown 
tells us that the independent Judiciary of 
England, is a great barrier against the en- 
croachments of the king; and that it 
serves to protect the liberties of the 
people. Sir, I agree with him. It does 
stand as a barrier against the encroach- 
ments of the Crown. And in Connecticut 
it will stand as a barrier against the en- 
croachments of the legislature, and as a 
protection to the rights and the liberties 
of the people. The judges have no power 
to oppress, that can be derived from 
holding the purse and the sword; and 
cannot in this respect be compared with 
the legislature. I would place them 
beyond the reach of that influence of 
which there has been a complaint. I hope 
this article will pass as reported. 

Judge Root then made a few observa- 
tions against an independent Judiciary. But 



1818 



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249 



Wednesday, September 9. 

Debate on the Independence of the 
Judiciary. Continued from our last. 

Mr. Wolcott's motion under 
consideration. 

Mr. N. Smith. I have no doubt, Sir, 
that the gentleman from Middletown 
[Alexander Wolcott] has argued sin- 
cerely on the present question, and from 
the best motives: but, Sir, the section is 
of the greatest importance, and deserves 
to be attentively considered, before we 
adopt it as a part of our constitution. In 
the first place, what does it provide? that 
the tenure of the office of judge shall be 
good behavior, that he shall be liable to 
removal by impeachment, or at the re- 
quest of two-thirds of both houses of the 
legislature. Examine this: Here you have 
the power of removal by impeachment, 
and two-thirds of your two houses of as- 
sembly may remove without assigning 
any reason. It has always been the opin- 
ion of the most eminent jurists, that the 
salary of your judges shall be fixed, and 
that the tenure of their office shall make 
them independent: this cannot be on the 
plan of annual appointments. Your gov- 
ernor and your legislature are secure, and 
the rights of the people are secure, in 
their annual appointments, for they are 
appointed by the people themselves; be- 
sides, sir, the nature of the office does not 
require it to be permanent. I have heard 
some gentlemen express their opinions 
on this subject; sir, I shall not trouble the 
convention with authorities; I did not 
now expect to discuss this question, and 
have not got them at command, but I will 
mention Paley, who has laid down the 
principle, that your Judiciary should 



as we did not distinctly understand his ar- 
gument, we shall not attempt to report it. 



Mr. N. Smith. By the amendment of- 
fered, it is proposed, that we should vest 
in the Legislature the power of appoint- 
ing all the judges of the respective courts 
annually; and thus render the judiciary 
absolutely dependent on that body. It 
was not expected, that a question of such 
vital importance as is the one involved in 
this proposition, would have been 
brought forward at this late period, when 
so great a part of the day has been spent 
in the examination of other topics, that 
we can hardly have an opportunity, to 
prepare for a discussion of it before we 
shall be called upon to act — I do not rise 
to enter at larg[e] into the merits of the 
subject; there is not time for this at pres- 
ent. But it is a duty incumbent on me, as 
one who reported the article under con- 
sideration, to meet the objections which 
may be alleged against it and to explain 
the principles on which it is founded. 

I am not disposed, Sir, to doubt that 
the Gentleman from Middletown was ac- 
tuated by the best intentions and the 
purest motives, in introducing the 
amendment before us. He may believe, 
that a judiciary deriving their existence 
from the Legislature; depending on the 
will of that body for their support, and 
that of their families; and liable to be re- 
moved without cause, and cast destitute 
upon the world, if they do not execute its 
mandates, however oppressive or uncon- 
stitutional, will stand as an independent 
umpire between man and man, and 



25 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9. 



hold their offices during good behaviour: 
and. sir. he has not laid down the princi- 
ple without reasons. In the year '73. 
when Mr. Jefferson was expecting a con- 
vention to be held in Virginia, he had 
prepared a constitution: and he made the 
judge hold his office during good behav- 
iour. The idea never entered the head of 
that great and learned man. that the Judi- 
ciary should be subject to annual 
appointments, and who will suppose that 
that man. did not consult the rights of the 
people? Sir. in a particular number of the 
Federalist, written by Mr. Jefferson, or 
Mr. Hamilton. I do not know which, the 
principle is laid down, that your Judges 
should hold their offices during good be- 
haviour. The constitution of the U. States 
was formed by men of long experience 
and eminent standing, and by that consti- 
tution the Judiciary is made 
independent — who were the men who 
framed that Constitution? Turn to the 
eminent men of the revolution, the fa- 
thers of our country and the authors of 
our liberty; were they not sufficiently at- 
tentive to the liberties of the people — 
were they attempting to establish a mon- 
archy' 1 . No. sir: they incorporated into 
that constitution a principle, without 
which the people have no liberty. In the 
constitution of every state, as the gentle- 
man from East-Windsor has well 
observed, the same feature is retained, 
except those of Connecticut. Vermont 
and Rhode-Island: in e\ery other state, 
this important principle is maintained: 
and. sir. painful as it is. I shall be under 
the necessity of instituting a comparison. 
Sir. the states which have had an inde- 
pendent judiciary, have been exalted to 
heaven in point of privilege, when com- 
pared with those which have not had 



administer impartial justice. — He may 
believe that a precarious tenure would 
gi\e stability to their councils: and that 
the fluctuations of party would but 
insure uniformity in their decisions: — 
that the conciousness of their depend- 
ence would be the best security for their 
independence; — that the uncertainty of 
continuing in office, and the assurance of 
being driven from the bench, by the first 
political change, would be the strongest 
inducement to men of learning and in- 
tegrity, to relinquish a lucrative practice 
for the honour of such an appointment, 
and the greatest incentive for them to ac- 
quire that information, so essential to the 
discharge of their official duties. This 
may be sound policy — This reasoning 
may be conclusive. — But. Sir. I cannot 
perceive the benefits of such policy: nor 
do such arguments earn.- conviction to 
my mind. 

It is objected, that the article, as re- 
ported, renders the office of a judge too 
permanent: and places him beyond the 
reach of the people. This is not true. The 
report provides for an impeachment 
founded on any cause that should inca- 
pacitate a judge. If he should exercise 
any favouritism: if he should be guilty of 
any misfeasance or malfeasance, he can 
be removed immediately. If. however, he 
should not be guilty of any improper 
conduct. — of any overt act. on which an 
impeachment may be grounded, and still 
lose the confidence of his fellow citi- 
zens: this article of the Constitution 
provides, that he may be removed by a 
vote of two thirds of the Legislature. But 
admitting the Legislature would be un- 
willing, without assigning some cause to 
exercise this authority, have they not a 
complete control of the Treasury? Can 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



251 



one. — I remarked, that the Judiciary is 
independent in every state but three: but, 
sir, let us come to our own state. In 1 803, 
though the subject had been frequently 
moved before, a convention was holden 
at New-Haven — an address to the people 
of Connecticut was published by that 
convention, signed by Wm. Judd. In that 
address it was declared, that the inde- 
pendence of the Judiciary, was essential 
to the rights of the people: this was the 
great object for which that convention 
was holden; it was the whole burthen of 
complaint, that your Judiciary is not in- 
dependent; and from that time down to 
the present moment, the newspapers 
have teemed with the same complaint: 
nay, sir, were it not for that principle we 
should not now be deliberating on this 
subject: at this point the government has 
ever been assailed and could be effectu- 
ally assailed. I remember that two years 
ago, when before the Legislature, a gen- 
tleman in my eye, declared there was no 
doubt of the correctness of the principle, 
and that when the time should come it 
would be properly settled. Are we, then, 
to be told at this time of day, that the 
principle is a bad one, that it will endan- 
ger the liberties of the state, and infringe 
the rights of the people? No, sir, I claim 
that the people do expect this principle to 
be incorporated into the constitution; 
and if this principle is not recognized, 
the instrument will be rejected. When 
formed on this principle they will adopt 
it. But, for an objection, "the independ- 
ence of the Judiciary became 
fashionable in England, because it was a 
barrier against the encroachments of the 
King upon the people," and it has grown 
into fashion here, because it was popular 
in that country — and sir, have the wise 
men of this country introduced the 



they not curtail or withhold the salary of 
an unpopular or obnoxious officer? — We 
have not, then, erected a tribunal, over 
which the people have no control; we 
have not placed public servants beyond 
their reach. But, on the contrary, we have 
vested in them all the power for which 
they could reasonably ask. The judges 
hold their offices on condition of dis- 
charging their duties to the State and to 
the people, with fidelity, should 6 they at- 
tempt to infringe the power of the one or 
trample upon the rights of the other, an 
effectual remedy is provided. So long as 
they continue to consult the interests of 
their fellow citizens; to watch over their 
rights, and to protect them in the enjoy- 
ment of their privileges, by a fair 
construction of the laws, and an impar- 
tial distribution of justice; so long will 
they remain in office; but no longer. It is 
not contended by the gentleman, in favor 
of annual appointments, that judges 
ought to be driven from the bench merely 
that others may occupy their seats; or 
that they should be removed without any 
reason whatever; but because, by that 
mode of appointment, the people, (who 
have been identified with the Legisla- 
ture,) can remove them when they have 
become unworthy of the office. This ar- 
gument will apply with equal force to the 
plan contained in the report; and proves 
the propriety of adopting it. If, on this 
principle, the security of the people re- 
quired annual appointments: then, on the 
same ground, it requires an appointment 
during good behavior, with the qualifica- 
tions annexed to this tenure in the article 
under consideration. 

But we are told, that, an independent 
Judiciary, on these principles is a nov- 
elty. Far from it, Sir. We have had the 
testimony of experience in our favor, 



252 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



principle because it was popular in that? 
Is it not a guard here against infringe- 
ment of the people[']s rights[?] 
Suppose, sir, that the state is agitated 
with parties, and that a majority prevails 
over a minority, would not the independ- 
ence of the judiciary be a protection in 
this case? Suppose the majority were to 
make a law unconstitutional; who would 
declare that law to be unconstitutional? 
Your judges. But would they do this if 
dependent on the breath of the legisla- 
tors? Does not the constitution declare, 
that there shall be three distinct branches 
of government, independent of each 
other? And will you place the judiciary 
at the feet of the legislature? By the 
amendment you prostrate the 7 branch of 
the government at the feet of that. What 
sir, shall the legislature enact the law, ap- 
point the judges, and have power to 
remove or appoint them annually? Every 
thing is swallowed up by the legislative 
power; there never was, and never will be 
a bad government where the judiciary is 
well established. The best man will be 
liable to depart from strict integrity when 
dependent on another. What is the case 
in Great-Britain? The poor man is as 
secure in the court as if he were equal to 
the first man in the kingdom; the judge is 
independent of the parliament on the one 
hand, and the king on the other. It is not 
of so much importance who makes your 
laws, they must be general; and no body 
of men will make an oppressive law, be- 
cause they are to be equally effected by it 
themselves. It is not of so much impor- 
tance who is your governor, or who your 
representatives — who belongs to the 
senate, or who to the house; these offices 
are important, I agree, and we should do 
every thing in our power to fill them with 
the best men; they will not oppress you; 



corroborated by the opinions of the most 
eminent jurists, and the first political 
writers in this country and in Europe. 
They all agree, that an independent Judi- 
ciary is the best safe-guard of liberty. We 
have a practical commentary of the fact, 
in almost every State in the Union. And 
when we are told, that those who would 
erect such a tribunal, do not regard the 
liberties of the people, we need only 
refer to the experience of our sister 
states, and we shall find an answer to the 
accusation; — The unblemished reputa- 
tion, the stern integrity, and the tried 
patriotism, of those who framed the dif- 
ferent Constitutions in our country, and 
the happiness which the people have de- 
rived from them, will furnish a refutation 
of the charge. When the people of Vir- 
ginia had dissolved their allegiance to 
the British Crown, they appointed Mr. 
Jefferson to frame for them a Constitu- 
tion of civil government. In the 
instrument which he reported, an inde- 
pendent Judiciary was recommended. 
And it was placed on a much more per- 
manent foundation, than that which is 
offered to this Convention. — Now, Sir, I 
would ask the Gentleman from 
Middletown, and those who hear me, if 
they believe that this great and learned 
man was regardless of the rights and lib- 
erties of the people? — The patriots of the 
Revolution, when called upon to secure 
the rights for which they had fought; to 
perpetuate the liberty which they had ac- 
quired, and transmit it unsullied to 
posterity; — gave us a Constitution, in 
which an independent Judiciary is se- 
cured. Under this instrument, which has 
been the admiration of the world, the 
people of the United States have enjoyed 
an unparall[el]ed share of happiness. — 
And Sir, shall we be told by the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



253 



but how is it in the power of the judiciary 
to oppress! In courts of justice, we look 
for the protection of our lives; reputation 
is assailed, property is in jeopardy — and 
sir, if the influence of party is to enter 
into that temple, I would not give a cent 
for your judiciary. Here is a widow, an 
orphan, a poor person; perhaps their 
rights are assailed by a powerful man, 
the head of some party — a man of influ- 
ence in the legislature; is the judge to 
feel, if he does not favour the views of 
this man, that his office is gone? If sir, he 
is a just man, I would not give him the 
pain which the delicacy of such a situa- 
tion would inflict; when the poor man 
enters the temple of justice, he should 
feel independent. I do not want to protect 
the rich and powerful; they will always 
protect themselves. Suppose a great po- 
litical question, a party question is to be 
decided; here is a judge to decide it; will 
not party feelings or party considerations 
affect his decision? That such a question 
may arise we all know; parties will con- 
tinue, and party questions will rise; but 
when the judges are independent, though 
parties may rise, and though they may 
dash against each other as the waves 
dash, justice is preserved; but if the judge 
must fall, justice will not enter such un- 
hallowed ground as this. Your judge 
should be like the minister of the gospel; 
he should preside over all the people. 
'Till 1784, judges were members of the 
council, and the people would take off 
their hats to a judge, as far as the fresh- 
men in college would formerly to old 
president Stiles. The judge and his office 
were reverenced; but what is the situa- 
tion of the state now? Torn by parties. 
Formerly, there was but one religious de- 
nomination in the state; there was then 
no complaints which are now heard; all 



gentleman, that these men did not regard 
the liberties of the People? — Were they 
providing against the encroachments of 
a Crown? — Did the fathers of our happy 
country, who have lavished their trea- 
sure, and shed their blood in the cause of 
liberty, intend to entail a curse on their 
children, when they erected an inde- 
pendent Judiciary? — No, Sir, the 
gentleman will not say it. — They had 
before them the experience of other 
countries; and did not adopt this princi- 
ple without reflection. They were 
convinced of the necessity of furnishing 
some check to legislative encroach- 
ments; of establishing some barrier to 
the violence of party; — And they erected 
a sanctuary, to which the poor man, as 
well as the rich, may flee for protection 
from the hand of power, and repose in 
safety. 

But, we need not go to other States, or 
to other countries, in search of evidence 
and examples on this subject. Let us look 
back but a few years, and we shall find, 
that even in Connecticut, the cause of an 
independent Judiciary has not been with- 
out supporters; — it is not "novel." In the 
year 1804, a Convention assembled at 
New Haven, for the purpose of redress- 
ing grievances, and obtaining a 
Constitution of civil governments. They 
published an address to the people; call- 
ing upon them to use every lawful and 
honorable exertion, to effect a change in 
the government of this State. Among 
other reasons assigned for this change, 
one of the most prominent was, that the 
people were subjected to the evils of a 
dependent Judiciary, holding their of- 
fices at the will of the Legislature, and 
subject to the control of a party. An inde- 
pendent Judiciary, and a distribution of 
powers, were strenuously advocated. — 



254 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



do not think alike, and sir, when the 
judge is appointed, I would hold up this 
lesson to him — your office shall be 
during good behaviour; and two thirds of 
the general assembly shall have the 
power of removal. If he became a parti- 
san, let him be removed. A partisan 
minister, or a partisan judge, is of all 
things the most odious. What is the fact 
in other states? The most odious partisan 
becomes a judge; and his very opponents 
are obliged to acknowledge that justice 
is administered by him with an even 
hand; tell me not that this is a relic of roy- 
alty. A dominant party with a court at 
their will, will ruin any people. A parti- 
san court, is a curse to community. In 
two or three states, judges are annually 
appointed; what man of principle will 
accept the appointment this year, if he is 
liable to be deprived of it next. If you 
would get men of principle to fill your 
bench, you must give them security; 
there is not a state in the union whose ju- 
diciary is independent, where a man 
would not enter a court of justice with 
perfect confidence. Look at Vermont — 
has not the administration of justice been 
let down to the ground? Has not the na- 
tional character of the state, (if I may so 
speak), been degraded? The principle ef- 
fects us; it will operate on our children. 
Establish the judiciary, and we give con- 
fidence to ourselves, and to strangers. 
There is no question of so much impor- 
tance, and the rights of the people will be 
egregiously sacrificed, if this principle is 
not recognized in the constitution. Ad- 
journed to 8 o'clock this evening. 



And, Sir, if I am not much mistaken, the 
Honourable gentleman from 
Middletown, who has just spoken in 
favor of a dependent Judiciary, was not 
only a member of that Convention, but 
he was one of the Committee who re- 
ported that address. He then wanted an 
independent Judiciary, because the liber- 
ties of the people were not safe, when 
confided to judges who were annually 
appointed! — Has he altered his opinion? 
or does he believe that the people will be 
in favor of the measure? — Sir, we are 
sent here to act from principle — not 
through fear. — But can we believe, that 
the people do not wish for a permanent 
Judiciary, when, from the year 1804 to 
the present time, they have been calling 
for it? — When that party, which is now a 
majority in the State, were a minority, 
they unceasingly complained of the evils 
attending on annual appointments. — 
Our newspapers have teemed with 
essays in favour of an independent Judi- 
ciary. The government has been 
repeatedly assailed on this ground. And 
it is a ground on which any government 
could be successfully assailed. It has 
been the most vulnerable part of our old 
Constitution. Suppose that the Legisla- 
ture should pass an unconstitutional 
law — Would judges, who are created by 
their breath, and who depend upon their 
will or caprice, for existence, dare refuse 
to carry it into execution? — If you make 
them dependent on the will of the Legis- 
lature, like almost all other officers of 
administration, they will rise or fall with 
parties; They will bear the stamp, and be 
governed by the feelings of party. Now, 
if, as the gentleman from Middletown 
has told us, this will ever be the case — 
why, when we have it in our power, 
should we not raise them above that 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



255 



influence? — Where do we look for our 
lives, our liberties, our property, and our 
reputation, which is dearer than life 
itself; but to courts of Justice? And if 
party is to be operating in these tribu- 
nals, — miserable must be the condition 
of that people who seek redress at their 
hands. What if, in times of high excite- 
ment when the most malignant passions 
of man are roused to the highest pitch, 
(and such times will occur,) an obscure 
individual, without fortune and without 
friends to support him, whose political 
sentiments do not coincide with those of 
the men in power; should be opposed to a 
rich and powerful neighbour, before 
such a court, upon a party question? — If 
the judge displeases the one, he loses 
every thing — if he does justice to the 
other, he will preserve every thing, and 
can lose nothing. Can he be supposed to 
act with impartiality, in a case like this? 
The judge, who, in such a situation, 
would be above the operations of preju- 
dice, passion or interest, must be either 
more or less than man. In a country like 
ours, there will ever be two parties. — 
The majority will never be in danger of 
losing their rights; but there will be a mi- 
nority also, who have rights; — if any 
men must suffer, they will be in the 
number. Their rights should be regarded, 
as well as those of the majority. We 
should protect the weak, as well as the 
powerful; the poor, as well as the rich. 
And what more effectual protection can 
we give them, than will be found in up- 
right and impartial judges, who can do 
justice without the fear of offending any 
party? With such a Court, no government 
can be bad; — without it, no government 
can be good. While parties do exist, de- 
pendent judges will continue to be 
partizans. They will mingle in the 



256 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



Evening. Mr. Treadwell — This sub- 
ject, Mr. President, is of very great 
importance, and I approve of the whole 
section — it is the corner stone of the 
whole constitutional fabric — incorpo- 
rate this principle, and you establish the 
glory of the state — the English Judiciary 
is the glory of that nation. Let who will 
be concerned, noble or peasant, inhabit- 
ant or foreigner, in a British court, justice 
takes place. The stability of the English 
Judiciary, lies at the foundation of the 
manufactures, commerce, trade and 
indeed all the important business of the 
nation — every individual has the advan- 
tage of his own labours. There is no 
buying or selling of Justice there — I con- 
ceive it to be peculiarly important that 
we establish the same principle. If we 
make the Judges independent, they will 
qualify themselves for their office. If 
they have not the requisite qualifications 
when appointed, they will soon acquire 
them; whoever therefore should be first 
appointed under this constitution, will 
either qualify themselves or occasion 
their own removal. It is impossible for 
ignorant men to hold the office for any 
length of time. Able men will fill the 
Bench — the law will be pronounced, and 
its principles rightly divided to the 
people. The glorious uncertainty of the 
laws, which is a maxim to those who 



political quarrels of the day. They will 
exert themselves to remain in office; they 
will mix with midnight caucusses. Politi- 
cal considerations should never enter the 
Temple of Justice — Justice would flee 
from such unhallowed ground. 

Wednesday evening. 

THE JUDICIARY. 

Mr. Treadwell, observed — That, this 
was the corner stone of a great fabric, 
and was the most important part of the 
whole: It was the pivot on which every 
thing turned. It laid at the foundation of 
all our rights; and if it should be estab- 
lished as was contemplated by the 
Report, it would be the glory of Connect- 
icut, as it had been of England. There 
was no such thing as buying or selling 
justice in that kingdom, owing to the in- 
dependence of the Judiciary, who were 
above any improper influence. When 
Judges knew that they were not depend- 
ent upon the will of the Legislature, it 
would be an inducement for them to 
qualify themselves, because they would 
then have an opportunity to pursue their 
studies without any molestation. — They 
would not be disturbed by such cases and 
anxieties as are apt to intrude upon the 
minds of those, who have no business on 
which they can rely for a permanent sup- 
port. They will establish a system of law 
by uniform and consistent decisions 
which will diminish litigation. The glori- 
ous uncertainty of the law; was a favorite 
maxim, with some, who derived special 
benefit from it, but not with the enlight- 
ened lawyer. It could be of no 
importance to him, who should be the 
first among the judges. If the judiciary 
should continue to be dependent we 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



257 



derive special benefit from it, will not be 
a maxim to enlightened jurists. Although 
the tenure of this office is of the greatest 
importance, I can only give my general 
opinion upon it, for my health is poor, 
and I speak with great difficulty. It is the 
most important paragraph in the consti- 
tution; it will be an honor to the state to 
adopt it. It is the noblest system of juris- 
prudence in England, and it will be so 
here. If you give the judiciary no stabil- 
ity, where are the men who will qualify 
themselves for the bench? Such qualifi- 
cations require a study of twenty years. 
The judge must be bred to the law; a man 
of integrity and ac[c]urate discernment. I 
would invite men of this description to 
the bench, by making them independent 
on it — I would give all possible encour- 
agement both in time and emolument. In 
this way you will establish a judiciary, 
which shall do honor to the State, and 
justice to the people. If you do not this, 
the principles of law will be varied, the 
citizens cant be told what the sentence of 
the court will be in a given case — no de- 
pendence can be placed upon their 
sentence. Make them independent, and 
whether high or low, rich or poor, your 
citizens will obtain justice. 



could have no settled system of law. — 
People might indeed know the law; but 
they could not tell what the decisions 
would be. 



Mr. A. Austin said — That he had 
made up his opinion on this subject more 
than thirty years ago. The question 
whether the judges should hold their of- 
fices during good behavior or be 
appointed annually, had often been dis- 
cussed before the Council. He had heard 
the arguments on both sides and was con- 
vinced of the necessity of establishing an 
independent judiciary. Stronger reasons 
may be given for this now, than could 
have been at that time. If a man wants re- 
dress, will he not apply to Courts for it? 



258 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



Mr. A. Wolcott — Mr. President, I 
have taken up much of the time of the 
Convention, but this question is of the 
first importance, and I cannot forbear of- 
fering a few more remarks. It is a 
question on which the whole Constitu- 
tion is to turn. We have proved every day, 
how excellent and happy our situation 
has been; that it has been the envy of the 
world, and to depart from our former 
habits, would be the height of folly. But 
now — these same gentlemen seem to 
have altered their opinion — and the State 
is like to have become degraded by the 
adoption of a principle which we have 
always had in practice; we are told that 
we cant have men of capacity and learn- 
ing to fill our bench, unless you place 
them beyond the reach of the people; that 
men will not prepare themselves for the 
office. Really, Sir, I am not very zealous 
on this point, but are we now in a retro- 
grade course, or advancing in science? 
why will the man who is made independ- 
ent in his office, be more zealous to 
qualify himself, than the man who is to 
lose his office in one year, if he does not 
qualify himself? The gentleman from 
New-Haven, has gone into a comparison 
of the different States, where the judi- 
ciary is independent, and where not — 
and has eulogised a judge in the State of 
New-York; but, sir, in Massachusetts, I 
know that party rancour also, and I know 
that an inconvenience was experi- 
enced — this will always be liable to be 
the case. A judge may be appointed, per- 
haps in party times, whom it would be 
very desirable to remove, and yet the 



If they are dependent will they decide 
impartially? They must do as the Legis- 
lature direct, or they will be served as the 
judges in Ohio had been on one occa- 
sion — they will be all turned out. 

Mr. A. Wolcott said he had taken up 
some time in discussing the question, but 
hoped that he would not intrude on the 
patience of the Convention, in offering a 
few additional remarks. This is a most 
important subject, and demands our 
greatest attention. We have every day 
heard that our government is excellent. 
From those who have said so, we now 
hear a different language. Those who 
have been loudest in their praises of the 
government, now call for a great change 
in it. It is said that without an independent 
judiciary, we cannot have men of integrity 
or talents upon the bench, and that the 
judges will not have any inducement to 
qualify themselves. Why will a man, who 
is appointed during good behavior, be 
more apt to qualify himself, than one who 
is appointed annually? If the latter should 
not do well, he will be removed. 

The gentleman from New-Haven 
[Nathan Smith] went into a comparison 
of the judiciary in different states, and 
eulogized the system of an independent 
judiciary. If judges have acted with in- 
tegrity under this system, it should be 
attributed to their temperament, and not 
to the tenure of the office. But it has been 
said that men of talents and integrity 
would not serve if they were liable to go 
out whenever there shall be a revolution 
in the state. If we should consult the in- 
terest of those lawyers who look for seats 
upon the bench, this argument might be 
of some weight. But we do not act for 
their good; we consult the interests of the 
public. You cannot impeach a man for ig- 
norance. I would not depart from the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



259 



circumstances may be such, that you 
cannot drop him; and, Sir, if we have met 
here to make gentlemen of the bar, we 
had better say that a judge shall never be 
removed. The way to obtain the best ad- 
ministration of justice, is to keep your 
judge from feeling too much personal 
importance — and if he should not be ca- 
pable, would it not be a great evil to keep 
him in office? his errors might be errors 
of judgment, and you could not impeach 
him for want of talents. No Sir, I am not 
for losing any principle of our demo- 
cratic government; but this principle of 
despotism comes from England. When 
the people appoint it does not belong to 
the executive to remove. Gentlemen say 
that the people have called for this 
reform — and the opinions of the learned 
men have been quoted. Sir, I have no 
other book of reference, than the volume 
of man, and in that is found good reasons 
for appointing your judges annually; 
from that we lear. that there is no danger 
in this principle — no Sir, but much 
danger to be apprehended from an ap- 
pointment during good behaviour. There 
is no apprehension of degradation, on the 
principle which we have always prac- 
tised. Our judges have always been 
honourable, and have been in high esti- 
mation, both at home and abroad, with 
perhaps one exception. Gentleman 
speaks of a convention having been held 
in New-Haven, and declares this princi- 
ple to have been the great cause of it. Sir, 
I was of that Convention, and beg leave 
to explain — the truth is, that the Conven- 
tion was held by a party burning and 
writhing under party feelings, and 
wounds, which were inflicted by an op- 
posite party; they would have had judges 
appointed for life, if by the means they 
could have considered themselves as 



democratic character of Connecticut; but 
if we pass the article as reported, this will 
be a departure. It has been said that the 
people have called for this change, and 
learned authors have been quoted to 
shew the propriety of adopting it. Now I 
appeal to no author. I consult only the 
book of man. I would not say that we 
shall be ruined, let the question be de- 
cided as it may. But if we adopt the 
article without any amendment, we shall 
make a retrograde movement. 

As to the people I have not heard any 
thing in favor of an independent Judi- 
ciary but from one man. The Gentleman 
from New Haven spoke of a convention 
which was held in that City in the year 
1804 — I do not mean to go back — But 
that Convention did not consider this 
subject with the same deliberation that 
we have. That was all a party business. 
They were writhing, as they thought, 
under oppression, and were willing to 
have any change, even if it should consti- 
tute Judges for life. 

Another argument in favor of an inde- 
pendent Judiciary is, that it will give us a 
system of law and will put a stop to liti- 
gation. Of this, England has been quoted 
as an example. I would ask whether there 
is less litigation in England where it is 
said that a poor man might go into their 
courts and receive equal justice with a 
rich one; than there is in Connecticut. 
The process of law is so expensive in that 
country that a poor man cannot obtain 
justice unless he is dragged into their 
courts as a victim. Litigation does not 
depend on the judges; but on lawyers and 
the habits of the people. — I cant believe 
that the people wish for this. The gentle- 
man from New Haven would not place a 
judge to decide between a rich man of in- 
fluence and his poor neighbor, when he 



260 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



standing on equal ground with their op- 
ponents. Sir, I make this explanation, as 
being a member of that Convention, and 
knowing the truth of the case. But, Sir, 
has litigation ceased in England on ac- 
count of the independence of their 
judiciary? is it not a fact, Sir, that no poor 
man can go into their courts, without 
being dragged in as a criminal? their 
courts are too expensive, to afford 
scarcely any protection to the poor class 
of the people. There is no country, where 
litigation is so great an evil as in Eng- 
land — and Sir, their litigation is not to 
cease; it does not depend on the judges, 
but partly upon the bar, and partly upon 
those who litigate. But, Sir, is it not a sin- 
gular position, that the people are 
unhappy, until deprived of power over 
their judges? are the people of Connecti- 
cut, unhappy on this account? they must 
indeed be strange people — I never heard 
of the fact until to-day — and indeed so 
far as I have heard the expression of 
public opinion, it has been the reverse. I 
had apprehended that the only arguments 
was, 8 that judges should feel independ- 
ent of party influence — but the 
gentleman from N. Haven, says that the 
great object is, not to place the judge in 
dread, in case he gives a decision in 
favour of a poor man, against a rich one. 
What a picture is this — why here is a 
Legislature so corrupt, that an individual 
cant remain a judge because he has given 
a case against a rich man. Is the gentle- 
man serious in this? What a whole 
people so corrupt, that a judge must be 
turned out of office, because he decides 
in favour of a poor man? and shall we 
provide against the liberties of this mis- 
creant race? they cant have liberty:— I 
have no apprehensions for ages to come, 
that there will be a danger of this sort. 



should be in fear for giving a just deci- 
sion. What a picture has he given us! — 
great men are to arise who will govern 
our courts, what a race must these be! — 
And are we to provide for the liberty of 
such a miscreant race? No, they deserve 
no liberty. 

It is said that a dependent Judiciary 
would not stand as a barrier to the en- 
croachments of the legislature to protect 
the constitutional rights of the people. 
That if the latter were to pass an uncon- 
stitutional law they would not oppose 
it. — Any court that should decide a law 
to be unconstitutional ought to be turned 
out of office. They ought to be turned out 
if they interfere with a legislative act. 
The court have no right to say that such a 
law, is not law. The judges cannot make 
or unmake laws. It has been said that the 
United States' courts had assumed this 
right, with regard to acts of Congress. 
True they had done it: but Judge Chase 
has decided that they had no right. But I 
have taken up some time and will not 
trespass on the Convention any longer. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



26 



But you must have your judges inde- 
pendent, or they cant decide a law to be 
"unconstitutional." If they do they will 
be "turned out." Sir, I hope so — what are 
they not appointed by the people, to 
decide against the Legislature, who are 
appointed by the people? a law is, or is 
not unconstitutional; and a court's deci- 
sion, will make no difference. Suppose 
that life should be taken upon an act. and 
the court should at length decide the act 
to be unconstitutional? it would be much 
better to have a council of revision, who 
should decide on the constitutionality of 
a law, before it was published. The 
judges of the Supreme Court of the 
United States, are said to have a right to 
decide on the Constitutionality of a law 
in one instance. I remember 9 it was un- 
dertaken, and Sir, a respectable member 
of Congress declared, that he would have 
preferred impeachment against the 
judge, but that he disliked the law. 

Mr. Butler made a very handsome ar- 
gument in favour of an independent 
judiciary, which we are compelled to 
omit entirely. 



[Connecticut Herald] 

Wednesday, Sept. 9. 

THE JUDICIARY. 

Mr. Butler, in reply to Mr. Wolcott, 
observed, that the Constitution, when 
adopted, must be the supreme law of the 
land. The gentleman has said that the ju- 
diciary have no right to decide between 
the Legislature and the Constitution. But 
I would ask that gentleman, whether it is 
not the duty of Judges to decide on the 
law? And if the Constitution be the su- 
preme law of the land, are they not bound 
by it? Suppose that the legislature should 
pass an unconstitutional law. Then there 
would be the supreme law on one side, 
and an act of the legislature on the other, 
infringing a right vested in the people. 
Which would be of greater force, the law 
of the people binding the legislature, or 
the bare act of the legislature, passed 
without any authority? — The gentleman 
asked how we could praise our old gov- 
ernment, when we had a dependent 



262 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



Judiciary, of which there was now so 
much complaint? He did not state the 
facts on this subject as they exist. It has 
been a part of the old constitution, 
founded on established custom, to con- 
tinue the Judges in office. And although 
they have been appointed annually, yet in 
fact their tenor 10 has been considered as 
established during good behaviour. If we 
could go on in this way, I should have no 
objection. But we have arrived at a new 
era. This custom has been infringed; 
many of the Judges of our County Courts 
have been changed, and some of the 
Judges of the Superior Court. And we are 
now informed, that we must have rota- 
tion in office. It has been asked, whether 
we had arrived to that state of degrada- 
tion, when a judge would suffer for 
doing justice to a poor man in opposition 
to a powerful rival? He did not believe 
that we were very much degraded. But 
the people of Connecticut are human, 
and subject to the frailties of nature. 
Judges who are dependent on the will of 
the Legislature, will know that a rich and 
powerful man, thus situated, has influ- 
ence, and that if they should offend him 
he would exert that influence against 
them. 

But the gentleman asks, why we 
should not render the Legislature inde- 
pendent? For this plain reason. The 
Legislature stands on a very different 
foundation from the Judiciary. They are 
under more restraints. If they make a bad 
law, they must suffer under its operation, 
as well as the rest of the community. But 
if Judges give an unjust decision, if they 
send a man to jail or to Newgate, without 
sufficient evidence, who is to suffer for 
it? Not the Judges, but the poor man. 

We are told about the litigation in 
England. The independence of the 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



263 



Mr. N. Terry's very pertinent re- 
marks, on the same side of the question, 
we are also compelled to omit. 



Judiciary is not the cause of it. We see 
more litigation in that than in other coun- 
tries of Europe, because the people seek 
redress for grievances at law, while on 
the continent, where there is less liberty, 
disputes are settled either by the sword, 
or by the decision of a despot, whose will 
is law. It is to the independence of the Ju- 
diciary in a great measure, that the 
people of England are indebted for that 
portion of liberty, which they have en- 
joyed. I have often been highly pleased 
in reading the reports of decisions in 
their courts, to see the magnanimity dis- 
played in administering justice 
impartially to the poor as well as the rich. 
With such judges, wealth and titles have 
no influence. I am pleased with that judge 
who dared to imprison the heir apparent 
to the Crown. 

Mr. A. Wolcott rose to explain. It has 
been asked what judges should do, 
where they had to decide between the su- 
preme law of the land on one side, and a 
legislative act on the other. The Constitu- 
tion has not yet been ratified; and if the 
expression, "supreme law," will stand in 
the way, let it be stricken out. The Legis- 
lature must bind the judges. 

Mr. N. Terry did not intend to enter at 
large into a discussion of this question. 
So much had been said on one side, in 
which he agreed, that it was not neces- 
sary. He rose merely to answer one thing 
that had fallen from the gentleman last 
up. If the legislature had that power, 
which the gentleman had ascribed to it, 
then we were vainly employed in making 
a Constitution. Suppose that the legisla- 
ture should make a law, requiring that all 
religious denominations should pay 
tythes to one established church, when 
the Constitution provides that all denom- 
inations should enjoy equal rights and 



264 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 9, 



privileges? Shall the judges say that this 
is correct; that this is law? Of what use is 
a Constitution, unless it be a check to the 
legislature? 



Mr. Lanman spoke at great length 
against the independence of the judiciary: 
and a good deal of desultory debate was 
had upon the question besides — we are 
not able to give any of it. — Adjourned to 
8 o'clock to-morrow morning. 



Historical Notes, September 9, 1818 

Some technical matters relating to the organization and presentation of the Convention's Jour- 
nal should be noted. September 9, as Robert Fairchild's notes at the end of this section make clear, 
marked the completion of one manuscript "book;" on September 10 the clerks began to use an- 
other. Perhaps more significantly, on this date, as Fairchild indicates, he stopped listing all the roll 
call votes within the Journal itself and recorded a number of them only in a table appended to the 
manuscript Journal and described in his asterisked note on the September 9 session as the "Roll of 
Delegates." For consistency and ease of use, we have followed Charles Hoadly's practice in his 
1873 edition of the Journal by rendering the votes recorded only in the table as lists within the 
Journal's text, but set in brackets to indicate that they are editorial additions and not part of the 
original manuscript Journal. The first four votes recorded in the table are those listed in full in the 
manuscript Journal for September 7 and 8; the single vote listed in full in the manuscript Journal 
for September 10 is also recorded in the table. We have not attempted to reconcile occasional dis- 
crepancies between the voting totals recorded in the Journal and the actual count of names in the 
lists. Such minor differences, as well as other clerical errors noted elsewhere, probably resulted 
from the speed at which the Convention worked. 

The Courant's version of the debates printed, with minor variations, the substitute version of 
Art. 4, Sec. 2, offered by James Lanman; since an official version is in the Convention's Journal, we 
have omitted it from the newspaper account. Offering other amendments on this day were Amos 
Gallup, a delegate from Stonington, Cyrus Swan from Sharon, Samuel Church from Salisbury, and 
Amos Baldwin from Watertown. For three of these four. September 9 marked their only active par- 
ticipation in the Convention other than voting: Gallup proposed another amendment on September 
10. Church was later a state Superior Court judge: Horton. "Annotated Debates," p. 5 In. 

Most of the newspaper accounts of the debates for this day were taken up with speeches about 
the judiciary, focused by Alexander Wolcott on the issue of the tenure of the high court judges. For 
the background of this issue, see S.R., XVIII, xli-xlii; above, p. xv. It should be noted that Wolcott's 
motion was simply to remove the language from the third section of the fifth article establishing 
tenure on good behavior: the Convention's Journal and the Courant's account, unlike the one in the 
Mercury; do not explicitly reference annual appointments, currently established by law. although 
his intent was probably to continue the current arrangements. 

The speeches on September 9 referenced a number of constitutional provisions and political 
developments elsewhere in the United States. The following Revolutionary-era constitutions. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 265 



referenced by Henry Terry, provided for judicial tenure on good behavior for high judicial offi- 
cers: Virginia (1776), North Carolina (1776), Massachusetts (1780), South Carolina (1790), and 
New Hampshire (1792). Despite what Terry argued, the New Jersey constitution (1776) and the 
most recent Georgia constitution (1798) provided set terms of years for a number of judicial of- 
fices, although Georgia did establish good behavior tenure for lower-ranking judges. Like 
Connecticut, Rhode Island operated under its colonial charter and presumably appointed judges 
according to statute law; Vermont's constitution (1793) provided for annual judicial appoint- 
ments. The Kentucky constitution (1799) indeed provided, as Terry mentioned, that reasons for 
removal be entered into the journals of both legislative houses. Thorpe, Constitutions, II, 798-99; 
III, 1284, 1905; IV, 2486; V, 2596, 2791; VI, 3263, 3765; VII, 3817. 

Henry Terry, Nathan Smith, Aaron Austin, and Alexander Wolcott alluded to specific political 
and legal developments in Vermont, Rhode Island, Ohio, and Massachusetts, in which arrange- 
ments for judicial tenure had produced political controversy. Regarding other specific matters, 
Alexander Wolcott referred in his first speech to the status of judges in England. Whether their 
tenure would be during good behavior or at the pleasure of the crown had been a source of conten- 
tion between King and Parliament throughout the seventeenth century; the Act of Settlement of 
1701 formally established good behavior tenure forjudges with removal only on the address of 
both houses of Parliament. Nathan Smith, in response to Wolcott, mentioned an opinion by Wil- 
liam Paley (1743-1805), an English clergyman and philosopher, who in The Principles of Moral 
and Political Philosophy (London, 1785; reprint, New York and London, 1978, pp. 499-500) de- 
fended those arrangements as one of the foundations of judicial independence. Smith also alluded 
to the draft constitution that Thomas Jefferson prepared for Virginia in 1776 (not 1773), which 
provided for judicial tenure on good behavior, and to The Federalist, No. 78, written by Alexan- 
der Hamilton, which defended that principle as embodied in the United States Constitution. 
Jefferson, Writings, pp. 342-43; [Bernard Bailyn et al., eds.,] The Debate on the Constitution: 
Federalist and Antifederalist Speeches, Articles, and Letters ... (2 vols., New York, 1993), II, 
467-75. Smith's allusion to a speaker from East Windsor was presumably to Henry Terry, who 
represented Enfield but was a probate judge for the East Windsor district. 

Smith also introduced the subject of the convention that was held in New Haven in 1 804 by the 
state's Democratic-Republicans and which had proposed a written constitution and a more inde- 
pendent judiciary: see S.R., XVIII, xii-xiii. As Smith pointed out, Alexander Wolcott had served 
in that convention. Wolcott addressed this matter later in the day, explaining that the situation had 
been different in 1804, in the heat of party conflict, than it was in 1818. Smith also stated that 
judges were members of the Council until 1784, referring to the separate organization of the Su- 
perior Court in that year (S.R., V, 323-240) and mentioned Ezra Stiles (1727-1795), who was 
president of Yale College for the last seventeen years of his life. ANB. 

In an evening speech, John Treadwell quoted an ironic maxim that had come into play in Eng- 
land in the 1750s in response to Lord Chief Justice Mansfield's overruling of judicial decisions: 
Elizabeth Knowles, ed., The Oxford Dictionary of Phrase and Fable (Oxford, 2000), p. 419. In his 
evening speech, Alexander Wolcott made references to judges in New York and Connecticut. 
More significantly, in making his case against judicial review of the constitutionality of legisla- 
tion, Wolcott alluded to an action by the U.S. Supreme Court, perhaps Marbury v. Madison 
(1803), which had solidified the doctrine of federal judicial review, and more specifically to an 
opinion by Justice Samuel Chase of Maryland ( 1 74 1 - 1 8 1 1 ), whose legal positions over the years 
provided arguments on both sides of this contentious issue. ANB. 



266 public records September 9- 10, 



Textual Notes on the Debates, September 9, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant. Sept. 15, 22. 1818. the Mercury, Sept. 22. 29. 
1818, and the Herald. Oct. 13. 1818. 

1 . word] words Courant: emended from the Journal. Sept. 29. 1818. 

2. crown — ] crown. Courant; emended from the Journal. Sept. 29. 1818. 

3. The Herald (Sept. 22. 1818) and the Times (Sept. 29, 1818) both add "or the Legislature, 
who are the people." 

4. cause] case Herald. Sept. 22, 1818. 

5. gentleman] gentlemen Mercury; emended from the Herald. Sept. 22. 1818. 

6. fidelty. should] fidelty. Should Times, Sept. 29. 1818. 

7. the] this Register. Oct. 3. 1818. 

8. had apprehended that the only arguments was] had only apprehended that the argument 
was Journal, Sept. 29, 1818. 

9. a law in one instance. I remember] a law; in one instance. I remember Journal. Sept. 29. 1818. 
10. tenor] tenure Times. Sept. 29. 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 267 

Book the 2d. 

Journal of the Proceedings 

of the 
Convention of Delegates 

convened at Hartford 

on the 26th day of August 

1818 — 

for the purpose of forming a Constitution 

of Civil Government 

for the People 

of the State of Connecticut. 



His Excellency 

Oliver Wolcott Esqr. 

President 

of 

the 

Convention 



Journal of the Convention held at Hartford 

Aug. 26 — 1818 for the purpose of forming a Constitution 

for the People of the State of Connecticut 

Book the 2nd 

[Convention Journal, September 10, 1818] 

Thursday, September 10th 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. — 

The Convention resumed the consideration of the motion of Mr. A. Wolcott 
relating to the tenure of the offices of the Judges of the Supreme Court and of 
the Superior Court, and on the question being taken by Yeas and Nays it was 
determined in the negative as follows viz. 

For the amendment 

Messrs. Sylvester Wells-S. Hart-Norton-Everest-R. Pitkin-Saml. Wells- 
Hubbard- Wilcox-Barker-J. Pettibone Jr.-Jones-E. Marshall-Josiah Phelps- 



268 public records September 10, 

Clark-Manwaring-Lanman-Fox-Hyde-Daboll-W. M. Williams-Braman- 
Comstock-C. Smith-Wm. Randall Jr.-Palmer-Kimball-Wm. Randall- 
Gallup-Avery-Lockwood-T. S. Wells-Seeley-Barnum-Fairchild-Burton-A. 
Gregory-Bennett-Webb- Waldo-L. Warren-Hutchins-Tilden-Babcock- 
Freeman-Gurley-Woodward-Dunlap-Hall-Keigwin-Welch-Pinney-Arah 
Phelps-J. Williams-A. Wolcott-Stow-Sage-Hurd-Lyman-Chapman- 
Young-Edgerton-J. S. Peters-Pease— Hyde-N. Johnson-Crawford-Paul- 
Sibley-Brigham — 68 yeas. — 

Against the motion — 

Messrs. Terry-Hooker-B. Hart-S. Pitkin-Jencks-Reed-H. Terry-Dixon- 
T. Pitkin-Treadwell-A. Church-Treat-Buel-Grannis-Mitchell-Lusk-N. 
Smith-Fowler-Rose-Hull-Shelton-Riggs-Farnham-Todd-R. Pierpont-Ben- 
edict-Bull-Gunn-D. Pierpont-D. Tomlinson-Osborn-Andrews-Miles- 
Adams-Thomas-Tolls-Ives-Learned-Deming-Isham-Abel-Brockway- 
Hill-Tomlinson-Starr-Cook-Lacey-C. Sanford-Wm. Shelton-Botsford- 
Fairman-M. Gregory-Eversley-Whiting-L. Sanford-King-Stevens-Weed- 
Edwards-Graves-Sturges- Wcbb - Waldo - L.Warrcn -R. W. Williams-Payne, 
Frost, Fuller, Griffm-Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Larned, Nichols, McLellan, 
Childs, O. Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, Swift, 
Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, Marsh, Merwin, A. 
Pettibone, J. Battel, Butler, Trowbridge, D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, Everett, 
Hinsdale, Wm. Battel, Marshall, Bushnel, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, 
Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, 
Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott,— 1 17 Nays. 

On motion of Mr. M. Warren to amend the 3d Section of the 5th Article by 
striking out the words " good behavior " and inserting in lieu thereof the words 
" five years " it was determined in the negative. 

On motion of Mr. Lanman to strike out the same words and to insert in lieu 
thereof the words " three years " it was determined in the negative by yeas and 
nays— Yeas 88— Nays 98.— 

[Yeas — Norton, R. Pitkin, S. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, Wilcox, Barker, 
J. Pettibone, Jones, Mitchell, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, C. Shelton, R. 
Pierpont, Clark, D. Pierpont, Marks, Manwaring, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, 
Daboll, W. Williams, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall, 
jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, 
Lockwood, T. Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, M. Gregory, 
Eversley, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, 
Webb, Waldo, Griffin, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, 
Gurley, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, Welch, Pinney, A. Phelps, J. Williams, 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 269 

Trowbridge, Bushnell, Tallmadge, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chap- 
man, Young, Root, Edgerton, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham. 

Nays — Syl. Wells, N. Terry, S. Hart, Hooker, Everest, Jenks, Reed, H. 
Terry, Dixon, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Grannis, Lusk, N. 
Smith, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, D. 
Tomlinson, Osborn, Andrews, Miles, Adams, Thomas, Tolls, A. Learned, 
Deming, Isham, Abel, Braman, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Fairman, Whiting, 
L. Sanford, King, Edwards, Bennett, Sturges, R. Williams, Payne, Frost, 
Fuller, Woodward, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, Nichols, McClellan, 
Childs, O. Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, Swift, 
Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, Marsh, Merwin, A. 
Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, S. Church, Swan, Everett, A. Hinsdale, W. Battell, 
H. Marshall, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, A. Wolcott, Brainerd, Huntington, 
Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott.] 

On motion of Mr. Stevens to insert the words " the pleasure of the General 
Assembly " instead of " good behavior " it was determined in the negative by 
Yeas and Nays — 76 yeas — 105 Nays. — 

[Yeas— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, 
Wilcox, Barker, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, C. Shelton, R. 
Pierpont, Marks, Manwaring, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, 
Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall, jun., 
Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lock- 
wood, T. Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, M. Gregory, Eversley, Gilbert, 
Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, Webb, Waldo, L. 
Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, 
Hall, Keigwin, Welch, Trowbridge, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, 
Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Root, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham. 

Nays — N. Terry, Hooker, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Grannis, Mitchell, Lusk, N. 
Smith, Fowler, Rose, Hull, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, Clark, Benedict, Bull, 
Gunn, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, Andrews, Miles, Adams, Thomas, 
Tolls, Ives, A. Learned, Deming, Isham, Abel, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, 
Botsford, Fairman, Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Edwards, Bennett, Sturges, R. 
Williams, Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffin, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, 
Nichols, McClellan, Childs, O. Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, 
Douglas, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, 
Marsh, Merwin, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, S. Church, Swan, Everett, A. 



270 public records September 10, 

Hinsdale, W. Battell, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, 
Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, 
Edgerton, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott.] 

On motion of Mr. Burrows to erase the 10th line containing these words 
" two thirds of the members of each House " it was determined in the negative. 

The question was then taken on the whole Section which was approved as- 
amended as reported by yeas and Nays — 1 17 Yeas — 77 Nays . 

[Yeas — N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, 
Dixon, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Whittlesey, Grannis, 
Mitchell, Lusk, N. Smith, Fowler, Rose, Hull, C. Shelton, Riggs, Farnham, 
Todd, R. Pierpont, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, 
Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Thomas, Tolls, Ives, A. Learned, Deming, 
Isham, Abel, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, W. Shelton, Fairman, M. Gregory, 
Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Edwards, Bennett, Sturges, R. Williams, Payne, 
Frost, Fuller, Griffin, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, Nichols, McClellan, 
Childs, O. Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Douglas, Swift, Burnham, Hale, 
North, Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, 
Butler, D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battell, H. Mar- 
shall, Bushnell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, 
Sage, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. 
Phelps, Pease, Talcott. 

Nays— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, 
Wilcox, Barker, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Clark, Manwaring, 
Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, 
Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall, jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, 
Avery, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. Wells, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, 
Eversley, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Graves, Burton, A. Gregory, 
Webb, Waldo, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Wood- 
ward, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, Welch, Pinney, A. Phelps, Merwin, J. Williams, 
Trowbridge, Perry, A. Wolcott, Stow, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, 
Young, Burrows, Peters, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham.] 

The 6th Article was read, de relating to the qualifications of Electors . 

The 1st Section was on motion of Mr. Treadwell amended by erasing the 
words " and remain " in the last line. 

The 2d Section was amended by- on motion of Mr. N. Terry by inserting the 
words " gained a settlement in this State " after the word " have " in the 2d line, 
and was further amended by inserting the words " in this State " next after " dol- 
lars" in the 8th line. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 271 

On motion of Mr. Treadwell to strike out the clause beginning at the 8th & ending 
in the 14th line [ illegible] the relating to military duty as a qualification of an elector, 
it was determined by yeas and nays in the negative — Yeas 67 — Nays 1 13. 

[Yeas — N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, 
Dixon, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Grannis, Mitchell, Lusk, 
Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Benedict, Bull, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, 
Whiting, L. Sanford, R. Williams, Payne, Frost, Griffin, Matthewson, Ingalls, 
McClellan, Childs, Hayden, Swift, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, Marsh, A. 
Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, Swan, Everett, A. Hinsdale, W. Battell, 
Tallmadge, Baldwin, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, 
Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott. 

[Nays— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, 
Wilcox, Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, N. 
Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, Gunn, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, 
Marks, Miles, Adams, Manwaring, A. Learned, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, 
W. Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. 
Randall, jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, 
Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. Wells, W Shelton, Seeley, 
Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, King, Gilbert, Stevens, 
Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, Graves, A. Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, L. 
Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, 
Hall, G. Learned, Nichols, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, A. 
Phelps, Burnham, St. John, Austin, Merwin, J. Williams, Trowbridge, D. John- 
son, S. Church, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Piatt, Perry, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, 
Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Willey, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham.] 

The 3d Section was read & approved. 

The 4th Section was read & amended by adding to it these words "or other 
offence for which an infamous punishment is inflicted" — 

The 5th Section was read and approved. 

On motion of Mr. H. Terry to amend the 6th Section by inserting after the 
word "The" in the 1st line these words " civil authority and " it was determined 
in the negative by Yeas & Nays — 82 Yeas — 91 Nays. — 

[Yeas — N. Terry, Norton, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, 
T. Pitkin, Barker, A. Church, Treat, Whittlesey, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, 
R. Pierpont, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Osborn, Thomas, Tolls, A. Learned, 
Deming, Isham, Abel, Whiting, L. Sanford, Burton, Payne, Frost, Griffin, 
Hutchins, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, Nichols, McClellan, Childs, 
Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, 



272 public records September 10, 

Brace, Hopkins, St. John, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, 
Trowbridge, D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battell, 
Bushnell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hunger- 
ford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Young, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Peters. 

Nays— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, R. Pitkin, Treadwell, Hubbard, Wilcox, Buell, 
E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Grannis, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, C. Shelton, 
Griffing, Clark, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, 
Ives, Manwaring, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, Braman, M. 
Warren, Brockway, C. Smith, W. Randal, jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, 
Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. Wells, W. 
Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Ed- 
wards, Fairchild, A. Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, L. Warren, Tilden, 
Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, 
Welch, A. Phelps, Merwin, J. Williams, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, 
Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Willey, Burrows, Pease, E. Hyde, N. John- 
son, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham.] 

On motion of Mr. Nott the words "Town Clerk" were added next after "Se- 
lectmen" — the Section was then approved, as amended, by 103 yeas to 72 nays . 

[Yeas— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, 
Wilcox, Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, C. 
Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, D. Pierpont, Osborn, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, 
Manwaring, A. Learned, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W Williams, Braman, 
M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall, Jr., Palmer, Kimball, 
W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacy, Lockwood, 
T. Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, 
Eversley, King, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, Graves, A. Greg- 
ory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, 
Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, Welch, Douglas, A. 
Phelps, St. John, Merwin, J. Williams, Trowbridge, D. Johnson, H. Marshall, 
Bushnell, Perry, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Guernsey, A. Chapman, Young, Willey, 
Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham 

Nays — N. Terry, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, T. Pitkin, A. 
Church, Treat, Buell, Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchell, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, 
Riggs, Todd, Benedict, Gunn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, Whiting. 
L. Sanford, Burton, R. Williams, Payne, Frost, Griffin, Matthewson, Ingalls, 
McClellan, Childs, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, 
Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, S. Church, 
Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



273 



Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, 
Edgerton, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott] 

The 7th Section was amended on motion of Mr. Treadwell by striking out 
the words " elections and other " in the 4th line — and approved as amended. — 

On motion of Mr. Pitkin the 8th Section was amended by striking out "or 
members of congress " and was then approved. — 

The 9th Section was amended on motion of Mr. A. Wolcott by erasing the 
exception and inserting in lieu thereof these words " on any civil process " and 
was then approved. — 

The 10th Section was read and approved after striking out "freemen's" and 
inserting " of the electors " after "Meetings." — Then the Convention adjourned 
until tomorrow morning at 8-o'Clock. 



[Convention Debates, September 10, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Thursday, Sept. 10. 

Mr. N. Smith made a short, and 
pointed, reply to Mr. Lanman, and Mr. L. 
spoke again at some length. 

Mr. Stevens made some remarks, 
which showed his opinion to be neither 
in favour of retaining or striking out — 
but of appointing a certain number of 
years. The question of striking out, was 
negatived — 117 Nays, to 70 Yeas. 

The question now recurred on the 
section as reported. Mr. M. Warren, 
moved to amend the section by striking 
out "during good behaviour," and insert- 
ing — "for four years" — which was lost. 

Mr. Lanman then moved "three 
years," and on counting, it appeared to 
have passed 86 to 85. Mr. T. Pitkin re- 
quested another count. This was opposed 
by Messrs. Stow, Lanman, Stevens, and 
M. Warren. Mr. Pitkin remarked that 
nothing was more common, in the house 



[Connecticut Herald] 

Thursday morning. 

After some further remarks on the Ju- 
diciary, from different gentlemen, the 
question on Mr. Wolcott's amendment, 
to appoint the Judges for one year, was 
taken by yeas and nays; and decided in 
the negative. — Yeas 70, Nays, 1 17 

Adjourned. 



274 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 10, 



of Representatives, than in cases of this 
nature to call for a recount. It was not 
considered an implication of the clerks at 
all, for every body knew how easy it was 
to make a mistake of one or two, in the 
hurry of counting so large a number. The 
only object in taking a vote was to get the 
minds of the Convention, and he cer- 
tainly did not wish to defeat that object; 
but he wished to have their minds accu- 
rately ascertained. 

Mr. Jencks called for the yeas and 
nays, and on taking the question again, 
the motion was negatived 98 to 88. 

Mr. Stevens then moved to insert 
"during the pleasure of the General As- 
sembly." which was negatived, 105 to 
76 — and the house adjourned to 2 
o'clock P.M. 

Afternoon — 

Mr. Gallup moved to add to the sec- 
tion. "No practising attorney at law, shall 
hold the office of Judge of Probate in this 
State" — Negatived. 

Mr. Burrows, then moved to strike 
out "two thirds of the members of each 
house" — which was also negatived. The 
question was then taken on the section as 
reported, and carried by yeas and nays — 
111 to 77. 

ARTICLE SIXTH. 

Qualifications of Electors. 

§ 1 . Judge Mitchell moved an amend- 
ment, by erasing "white male" — and on 
motion of Mr. N. Terry the question was 
divided, and first taken on "white:" this 
after some debate was lost, and the other 
part of the motion was withdrawn. 

Mr. Treadwell moved to erase this 
clause[,] "or having been enrolled in the 
Militia, shall have performed military 



Thursday afternoon. 

The article on the Judiciary passed as 
reported. Yeas 1 1 1 — Nays 77. A desul- 
tory debate, of no great importance, 
occurred on the article relating to the 
qualifications of electors. 

The remainder of the session was oc- 
cupied in making amendments to the 
Constitution. But as that instrument has 
already been laid before the public in a 
perfect state, and ratified, a detail of fur- 
ther proceedings would not prove very 
interesting. 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



275 



duty therein, for the term of one year 
next preceding the time he shall offer 
himself for admission, or being liable 
thereto, shall have been by authority of 
law excused therefrom." Some desultory 
debate was had on the amendment, and it 
was negatived, 93 to 70. 

After some slight amendments, the 
question was taken on the section, and 
carried, 103 yeas to 72 nays. 

Adjourned to half past 7 this evening. 

Evening. — The remaining sections of 
this article, after some slight amend- 
ments, were accepted and approved. We 
would remark again, that, in the course 
of all these proceedings, there has been a 
great deal of desultory debate, which it is 
impossible, and would be improper to 
give; indeed, the whole business has 
been made a subject of conversation — 
with one exception, each member has 
been permitted to rise and express his 
sentiments fully, without interruption. — 
Adjourned to 8 o'clock to-morrow 
morning. 

Historical Notes, September 10, 1818 

Clark Nott, a delegate from Saybrook, made an appearance in the proceedings, introducing a 
successful amendment to the article on electoral qualifications; he was a former justice of the 
peace for Middlesex County and state representative from Saybrook. 

We believe that the newspapers correctly recorded the final vote on the third section of the 
fifth article as 1 1 1-77. We concur with Wesley Horton's conjecture ("Annotated Debates," p. 
65n) that the 93-70 vote reported by the Courant on John Treadwell's motion to remove the mili- 
tia qualification for electors was in fact the 1 13-67 vote recorded in the Convention's Journal. In 
the "Roll of Delegates" (see above, p. 264n), the clerks accidentally reversed the columns for the 
82-9 1 and 103-72 votes. The explanatory note at the end of the Herald's account of the debate re- 
sulted from the fact that the editors did not print their version until October, long after the 
Convention adjourned. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 10, 1818 

The base texts are taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818, and the Herald, Oct. 13, 1818. 






276 public records September 11, 

[Convention Journal, September 11, 1818] 

Friday, September 1 1th . — 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. — 

The Convention took into consideration the 7th Article relating to 
" Religion " — 

The 1st Section was read and 

On motion of Mr. G. Tomlinson to erase the words "right and" and insert 
next after " universe " these words " and their right to render that worship " it was 
determined in the affirmative. 

On motion of Mr. Lanman the same section was further amended by trans- 
posing the words " by law " from the end of the 6th line, to the end of the 5th 
line; and inserting "But" instead of "And" at the beginning of the 9th line. 

The question was then taken on the Section as amended, and approved by 
103 Yeas to 86 Nays— 

[Yeas— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, R. Pitkin, Sam. Wells, Hubbard, Wilcox, 
Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, C. Shelton. 
Clark, D. Tomlinson, Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, A. 
Learned, Turner, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, Braman, M. 
Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W Randall, jun., Palmer, Kimball, 
W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, 
Lockwood, T. Wells, W Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, M. Greg- 
ory, Eversley, King, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, A. Gregory, 
Sturges, Webb, Waldo, R. Williams, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, 
Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, Welch, 
Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, A. Phelps, St. John, Merwin, D. Johnson, S. Church, 
Perry, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Bur- 
rows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham. 

Nays — Norton, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, 
Dixon, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Whittlesey, Grannis, 
Mitchell, Lusk, N. Smith, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, R. Pierpont, 
Benedict, Bull, Gunn, D. Pierpont, Osborn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham. 
Abel, Whiting, L. Sanford, Burton, Bennett, Payne, Frost, Griffin, 
Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, Nichols, McClellan, Childs, Hayden, Mills, 
Lambert, Swift, Burnham, Hale, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, 
J. Battell, Butler, Trowbridge, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battell, H. Mar- 
shall, Bushnell, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, 
Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. 
Phelps, Pease, Talcott.] 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 277 

The 2nd Section of the 7th Article was read, and on motion of Mr. T. Pitkin to 
strike out the whole Section it was determined in the negative — Yeas 84 Nays 105 . 

[Yeas — N. Terry, Hooker, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, Sam. Wells, A. Church, Treat, Buell, Whittlesey, Grannis, 
Mitchell, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, R. Pierpont, Benedict, 
Bull, Gunn, Osborn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, Whiting, L. San- 
ford, Burton, Bennett, Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffin, Matthewson, Ingalls, 
McClellan, Childs, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, 
Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battell, Butler, Trowbridge, 
Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battell, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Tallmadge, 
Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, 
Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott. 

Nays— Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Hubbard, Wilcox, Barker, E. 
Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, C. Shelton, Clark, An- 
drews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, A. Learned, Turner, Lanman, 
Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, 
C. Smith, W. Randall, jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, 
G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. Wells, W. Shelton, 
Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, King, Gilbert, 
Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, Graves, A. Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, 
R. Williams, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Wood- 
ward, Dunlap, Hall, G. Learned, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, 
Pinney, A. Phelps, St. John, Merwin, D. Johnson, S. Church, Perry, Bacon, A. 
Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Burrows, 
Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham.] 

The Question was then taken on the Section as reported and was approved 
by — 97 Yeas to 69 Nays. — 

[Yeas — Syl. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, Everest, H. Terry, Treadwell, Sam. 
Wells, Hubbard, Wilcox, Buell, E. Phelps, Grannis, Lusk, E. Marshall, Hull, C. 
Shelton, Clark, Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, A. Learned, 
Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, 
C. Smith, W. Randall, jun., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, 
G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. Wells, W. 
Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, Whiting, Gilbert, Stevens, Weed, 
Edwards, Fairchild, Graves, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, R. Williams, L. Warren, 
Hutchins, Tilden, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Hall, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, 
Welch, Burrall, Douglas, A. Phelps, Merwin, D. Johnson, S. Church, Perry, 
Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, 
Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham. 



278 public records September 11, 

Nays— N. Terry, B. Hart, R. Pitkin, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, Dixon, T. Pitkin, 
Barker, A. Church, J. Pettibone, Whittlesey, Morse, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farn- 
ham, R. Pierpont, Benedict, Gunn, D. Pierpont, Osborn, Thomas, Tolls, Isham. 
Abel, M. Gregory, Eversley, Burton, Bennett, Payne, Frost, Griffin, 
Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Learned, McClellan, Childs, Hayden, Lambert, Swift, 
Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. 
Battell, Butler, Trowbridge, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, Bushnell, Baldwin, 
Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, 
Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott.] 

The Convention then proceeded to consider the 8th Article concerning 

Education . 

The 1st Section was read and approved. — 

The 2nd Section was read and amended by inserting after the word 
" remain " in the 2d line, these words "a perpetual fund the interest of which 
shall be." It was then approved as amended. 

The 9th Article "of Impeachments," was read and approved. 

The 10th Article containing " General Provisions ["l was considered, and the 
1st Section was amended, on motion of Mr. G. Tomlinson, by inserting the 
word "you" instead of the words "I do" at the beginning, and altering other 
parts of the Section in conformity to that amendment. 

The 2nd Section was read and approved. 

The 3d Section was amended on motion of Mr. Fairchild, by inserting next 
after the word adopted in the 3d line these words "with the exception of such 
regulations and restrictions as are contained in this Constitution," and was fur- 
ther amended, on motion of Mr. Lanman, by varying the last sentence in the 
Section so as to stand thus — "The validity of all bonds, debts, contracts, as well 
of individuals as of bodies corporate or the State, of all suits, actions or rights 
of action, both in law or equity, shall continue as if no change had taken 
place," — and was approved as amended. 

The 4th Section was read and amended by inserting at the beginning of the 
1st line these words "No Judge of the Superior Court or of the Supreme Court 
of errors." 

On motion of Mr. McLellan further to amend to the Section by adding at the 
end of it, these words "and no person holding any office under the authority of 
the United States shall be a Judge of the Supreme, Superior, or County Courts" 
it was determined in the negative. — 

The 5th and 6th Sections were read & stricken out on motion. 

The Convention then proceeded to the consideration of the 1 1th Article "Of 
Amendments to the Constitution" and on motion of Mr. M. Warren to strike out 



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the words " two thirds " in the 9th line of the 1st Section, and to insert in lieu 
thereof the words " a majority " it was determined in the negative and to insert 
after the words " each House " in the same line the words " counting on the Roll 
of the House" it was determined in the negative. On motion of Mr. Treadwell to 
strike out the words "a majority" in the 19th and 20th lines and insert the words 
"two thirds" in lieu thereof, it was determined in the negative. — 

The 1 1th Article was then approved as reported. 

Messrs. Lanman, H. Terry and Fairchild were appointed a Committee for 
engrossing. 

Messrs. Stevens, M. Warren and McLellan were appointed a Committee for 
making up the Debenture. 

On motion of Mr. H. Terry to strike out the 2nd Section of the 2nd Article re- 
lating to the " Distribution of Powers " it was determined in the affirmative. 

On motion of Mr. Lanman the 5th Section of the "Bill of Rights" as reported 
was stricken out. — 

And the Convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 8 o' Clock. — 

[Convention Debates, September 11, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Friday, Sept. 1 1 . 

ARTICLE SEVENTH. 

Religion. 

§ 1. Mr. Hart read the section and 
made some remarks on its importance, 
and expressed himself in favour of its 
provisions. The following is the section 
as reported. 

§ 1 . It being the right and duty of all 
men to worship the Supreme Being, the 
great Creator and Preserver of the uni- 
verse, in the mode most consistent with 
the dictates of their consciences; no 
person shall be compelled to join or sup- 
port, nor by law be classed with, or 
associated to any congregation, church 
or religious association. — And each and 
every society or denomination of Chris- 
tians in this State, shall have and enjoy 
the same and equal powers, rights and 



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September 11, 



privileges; and shall have power and au- 
thority to support and maintain the 
ministers or teachers of their respective 
denominations, and to build and repair 
houses for public worship, by a tax on 
the members of the respective societies 
only, or in any other manner. 

Mr. Treadwell agreed that it was a 
very important section, and moved to 
divide the question: the first to be taken 
on that part of the section ending with the 
words "or religious association," — 
which was agreed to, and he then made 
the following remarks: — I rise, sir, for 
inquiry on this part of the Article. As it 
regards conscience, I know it is the duty 
of every person to worship the Supreme 
Being, in spirit and in truth — but con- 
science may be perverted, and man may 
think it his duty to worship his creator by 
images, or as the Romans and Grecians 
did. My objection, sir, is to the word 
duty. I would tolerate all modes of wor- 
ship, but would not recognize it in the 
Constitution, as the duty of a person to 
worship as the heathen do. Again Sir — 
"No person shall be compelled to join or 
support, or by law be classed with, or as- 
sociated to any congregation, church or 
religious association." I wish to know the 
extent of meaning in this expression. If I 
understand, it goes to dissolve all eccle- 
siastical societies in the State. 
Ecclesiastical societies are now associ- 
ated by law, and have certain privileges 
by law. This Sir, takes away their rights 
and privileges, it recognizes no ecclesi- 
astical association, but leaves all, as it 
were, in a state of nature. Sir, I have no 
idea of making distinctions between dif- 
ferent religious denominations; whether 
congregationalists, episcopalians, bap- 
tists or methodists, all should be placed 
on equal footing. When a particular 



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denomination prevails, I would make it 
the standing denomination of the place, 
and others should enjoy the privilege of 
separating from it. If the episcopalians or 
baptists prevail, the other denominations 
should certificate. Sir, there can be no 
objection to this principle; I know that in 
most societies, congregationalists pre- 
vail, but what then — this makes no 
distinction, the principle associates no 
particular denomination by law. But the 
article dissolves all associations: "no 
person shall be classed with" — now, all 
persons are classed with and associated 
together; this is to dissolve the whole 
union. Sir, I am unwilling that these as- 
sociations should be thus dissolved; they 
have certain rights and privileges, as cor- 
porate bodies, and unless they have 
forfeited those rights, they cannot be 
justly taken from them. Justice would 
demand a trial in this case, and unless my 
views should be very much corrected on 
this subject, I am altogether opposed to 
the article. 

Mr. A. Wolcott said, in order to con- 
ciliate the feelings of gentlemen, he 
would move to erase the words "and 
duty," which was not done. 

Mr. Stow — We are called upon, Mr. 
President, for the meaning of this sec- 
tion. I will give what was my opinion of 
its meaning, when it passed the commit- 
tee. It had always been my opinion, that 
Connecticut had been parcelled out; that 
religion had been established by law, and 
that congregationalists had been the 
order established. I believe, Sir, if it had 
never been the case, the people would 
not do it now: but it has been done, at a 
time when men were not as liberally dis- 
posed as they are now, or at least when 
there were not as many denominations as 
there are now. I acknowledge, Sir, that 






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September 11 



certain societies have corporate rights; 
some societies have funds, and if we do 
away these rights, we infringe on private 
rights. To steer clear of that, I would say 
in future, that is, I would not say hereaf- 
ter that a person shall contribute to 
support, but with his voluntary consent. 
If an individual enters a town now, he 
must enter his name as belonging to 
some denomination of Christians. This 
law was made so broad as to compel no 
such thing; but it designs that all who 
have been caught in these bands may be 
let out. If any man says he has been im- 
prisoned unlawfully, this will let him 
out, and he may go free; hereafter we 
will have no such restraint. As to the 
present section, if it is altered in any way, 
it will curtail the great principles for 
which we contend, and society will be 
disturbed as heretofore; and Sir, to come 
to the established order, for whatever 
you may call them, although they were 
established by the Saybrook Platform, 
they do not all agree among themselves. 
Some say, that if their preachers continue 
to preach certain doctrines, they shall be 
dissatisfied; they will not pay for preach- 
ing which they don't believe — and Sir, 
on this principle of liberality they will 
not need to. Some societies will tax 
themselves, and some not — they will 
find it inconvenient, they will find them- 
selves loosing 1 members by it, for those 
who are dissatisfied will go away, and fi- 
nally adopt principles, which otherwise 
they would not own. Some societies will 
sell their pews, and others will rent them 
for the support of their minister, accord- 
ing to circumstances. Sir, this provision 
is necessary, to secure the rights of those 
who are incorporated, and those who are 
not. The gentleman from Farmington 
[John Treadwell] would make the 



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congregationalists the predominant 
order; but Sir, this is not agreeable to the 
spirit of the times. It is well known that 
certain orders don't want this privilege, 
and it would be idle to grant them what 
they don't want. I hope the section may 
pass, that the thing may be set at rest, and 
the State settle down quietly. 

Mr. Treadwell said the gentleman cer- 
tainly misunderstood him. He expressly 
declared, that all denominations should 
be placed on an equal footing. 

Mr. A. Wolcott would not have a man 
compelled to join, or pay, to any political 
society. 

Mr. G. Tomlinson expressed himself 
in favour of the section, as it stood, and 
declared that it placed the subject exactly 
on the footing of the present law. 

Mr. N. Terry — Sir, I cannot agree 
with the gentleman last up; if I could I 
should be very glad. Nay, Sir, my ideas 
on this subject are exactly contrary to 
his. The principle contained in this 
section, is entirely different from our 
present law on this subject. The principle 
on which our law is founded, is here cut 
up by the roots; our law does compel a 
person to belong somewhere, though he 
has the liberty to belong where he 
pleases; but here it is declared, that it 
shall be at the option of the person, 
whether he belongs to any denomina- 
tion: "No person shall be compelled to 
join or support, or by law be classed 
with, or associated to, any congregation, 
church or religious association" — if gen- 
tlemen would stop here, the Article 
would be less exceptionable; but the Ar- 
ticle goes to withdraw all support from 
present corporations — turn Sir if you 
please to the 2d Section: "If any person 
shall choose to separate himself from the 
Society or denomination of Christians, 



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September 11 



to which he may belong, and shall leave 
a written notice thereof with the Clerk of 
such Society, he shall thereupon be no 
longer liable to any future expenses, 
which may be incurred by such Soci- 
ety" — now Sir, put these two passages 
together, and I submit, whether it does 
not dissolve all obligation; this is to be 
the operation of it: I am not opposed to 
the free enjoyment of the rights of con- 
science, I should be the last man to 
oppose a principle of that nature; Sir, no 
man should infringe my rights of con- 
science, and I am willing that all others 
should enjoy the same — but the question 
is, whether religion shall be supported 
somewhere; does this interfere with the 
rights of conscience? this law is to be es- 
tablished for the health of community — 
we are taxed to support many things 
which we don't like; suppose I do not 
like a particular religious denomination, 
and am taxed to support it unless I unite 
myself to some other; does this interfere 
with my rights of conscience? no more 
Sir, I beg leave to say, than it does to be 
taxed for the support of a war, which I 
don't approve of. I suppose I should not 
think it necessary for my children to be 
schooled; if laws are made for the sup- 
port of schools, shall I be absolved from 
taxes? no Sir. Schools are a benefit to the 
community, and all men should be made 
to support them; although some may be 
of a different opinion. On the same prin- 
ciple, would I make all men support 
public worship somewhere; but on the 
question where, every man should be left 
to act at pleasure; this is the object of all 
our laws, the public good. I do not under- 
stand that any one denomination is 
placed over another — Sir, what is our 
law! why, that if a person wishes to leave 
a society of one denomination for that of 



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285 



another, he has only to signify his desire 
in writing, and lodge it with the Town 
Clerk; and can you get along without 
this? will you go counter to the very prin- 
ciple which has produced so much 
happiness to the people? but gentlemen 
say, you must "certificate to the standing 
order" — can it be otherwise? Sir, I defy 
the gentleman to make a practicable al- 
teration in this respect: the attempt has 
already been made by a party on coming 
into power, and what was done? the same 
law continued with a very slight alter- 
ation. On this principle, if a man moves 
into the society of West-Hartford, he is 
presumed to belong to the congregation- 
alists — and if he comes into Hartford, 
would you certificate if he don't belong 
to the Episcopal Church? No Sir, there is 
no propriety in this; in carrying this law 
into effect, you must have a place, a quo 
to start from; it is impossible that a law 
should be more equitable, or more just — 
but this Article goes to destroy the law, 
and puts it in the power of every man to 
contribute or not, as he pleases. But gen- 
tlemen would permit those to be taxed 
who are willing — what sort of regulation 
is this? here is a meeting house to be 
built, and the society votes to build it — 
certain persons choose not to pay their 
part, and withdraw from the society; but 
as soon as the house is built, and the min- 
ister settled, these same persons come 
directly back and enjoy the privileges. 
But Sir, I have been up long enough, I 
cannot vote for the Section, and am 
obliged to say, that I cannot vote for the 
Constitution with such a provision in 
it— for Sir, it strikes at the root of good 
order in society. 

Mr. Burrows and Mr. Treadwell both 
spoke here, but we must omit their 
remarks. 



286 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 



Mr. Stow — In answer to the gentle- 
man from Hartford [Nathaniel Terry], 
Sir, I deny that the Legislature have a 
right to compel a man to support public 
worship: if they have that right, they 
have a right to say what is public wor- 
ship, and where, and in what manner he 
shall support it: this is impolitic — it has 
been the cause of all the martyrdoms 
down to the present day; they have a 
right to legislate on all subjects relative 
to civil liberties, and in such cases the 
majority shall rule; but if a society can 
say that individuals shall worship, it can 
say how they shall worship: to direct to 
worship on this mountain or on that 
mountain. And if they vary from this, the 
right is infringed. It is the duty of all to 
worship in sincerity and in truth; but I 
deny the right of any power to make a 
man worship — all should be left free, 
and if men differ, it amounts to only this; 
if my neighbor dont think as I do, he is 
accountable to his God for it. If a power 
has a right to say what is public worship, 
it may go to support idolatry. The Bill of 
Rights says that it shall be free for all 
men to worship God according to the 
dictates of their own consciences: now if 
you make a law that a man shall worship 
somewhere, and that man should think it 
his duty to worship the devil, you would 
compel him to worship the devil; and is 
the gentleman prepared to say, a man 
shall do that? Let every man have a right 
to render voluntary worship, and not 
compel him to render it. — Adjourned to 
2 P.M. 

Afternoon. — Mr. Tomlinson moved to 
amend the first part of the section so as to 
read thus. — "It being the duty of all men 
to worship the Supreme Being, the Great 
Creator and Preserver of the Universe, 



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287 



and their right to render that worship, in 
the mode, &c." — which was done. The 
question was then taken on the section 
and approved. — 103 yeas to 86 nays. 

M[r]. Treadwell then moved the fol- 
lowing amendment, to the 2d section — 
by inserting after the words — "clerk of 
such Society" — this clause — "and shall 
join himself to a society of christians of a 
different denomination, so as to become 
subject to their lawful orders and regula- 
tions, with respect to its common 
expences" he shall, &c. This amend- 
ment, said Mr. T. will compel those who 
belong to a particular society, to con- 
tinue their support or contribute to some 
other society. His connection with one, 
cant be dissolved, till he has prepared to 
become subject to the regulations of an- 
other. It therefore places the subject on 
this solid principle that every individual 
shall support public worship, some- 
where — and the proportion will be 
properly distributed. Expences incurred 
for common good should not be defrayed 
by a few individuals. I do not like the idea 
of taxing one part of the community, and 
excusing another. The support of Public 
worship, is necessary to the good of the 
State. On what principle, therefore, can 
any man be excused from the burthen? 

Mr. Waldo — In old times, we are told 
that Pharaoh, would not let the people 
go — and when the disciples deserted our 
Saviour, and walked no more with him, 
we dont hear of any force being used to 
make them return. Much is said, Mr. 
President, about religion. In what does it 
consist? "Love the Lord thy God, &c." 
Those who do not this, must take the 
consequences, I would not compel them 
to do it. The worst thing that ever was, is 
an established religion. This has been the 
case with the Mahomedan and Roman 



288 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 1 1 



Catholic. When I was a little boy, it 
caused more bloody noses, than any 
thing else; ah you seperate, you 
seperate, the other boys would cry; I'm 
sorry I ever took so much notice of them, 
but, I now thank God for the privilege of 
expressing my opinion and giving my 
vote against it. 

Mr. Hart said, there has been an es- 
tablished religion here, and can it be the 
true religion? There is but one true reli- 
gion — and what shall we do with 
Catholics and other denominations? 
(Tolerate them all said Mr. Treadwell.) 
Mr. Speaker, this looks a little like this — 
one man says to another, you help me 
support my truth, and I will help you 
support your falsehood. I have no idea of 
supporting error. I dont like it — and I 
shall make use of all my weapons to de- 
stroy it. There are two kinds of religion 
brought in here, one of the heart, and the 
other of the head. It seems we can do 
nothing about supporting the religion of 
the heart — but you can compel a man to 
pay money — and will this promote the 
good morals, happiness, and peace of so- 
ciety? Many people think that religion 
may be supported without money — and 
for my part, I have no mind to make a 
monied institution of it. According to 
reasoning of the gentleman, the more 
money you spend, the more religion you 
have — and what right has a man to make 
another support a monied religion? I 
know of but one man who undertook to 
purchase the gift of God with money, and 
he did'nt succeed very well. Let us refute 
each others errors, and support truth. 
Mists and darkness are now cast around 
it. We had much better support truth, 
than compel the people to pay money. 

Mr. D. Burrows said, if a man went 
off from society, as it was represented he 



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might do, by the gentleman from Hart- 
ford [Nathaniel Terry], he was a mean 
fellow, let him go; but we ought not to 
make a man pay so much money for 
going to Heaven. 

Mr. Edwards: Perhaps it is proper Mr. 
Speaker to remove some difficulties out 
of the way, or which some will call diffi- 
culties if they do not urge them as 
argument. 'This provision gives to every 
one the privilege of leaving a society, 
without uniting himself to any other." It 
does, Sir; and the laws as they now stand 
do so; and those from the year 84. Sir, I 
would have no expost facto laws; much 
has been said regarding the propriety of 
maintaining religion as engine of the 
State. That is not the question now, if it 
had been I should have been under the 
necessity of summoning more strength 
than I now feel possessed of. The single 
question is, shall we retain this section? 
why not, Sir? Under your present laws 
you can no more maintain religion as a 
State engine. The gentleman from 
Farmington [John Treadwell] would 
compel the people to support this engine. 
Sir, I need go no further back than the law 
of 1817, which permit me to read; 
(reads) — here is no compulsion, for join- 
ing another denomination; but admit there 
is; gentlemen say, he must not be permit- 
ted to attach himself to no denomination. 
Sir, they talk about a bubble, as says the 
gentleman from Hebron [Daniel Bur- 
rows]; it is well known that the people will 
belong to the baptists and methodists, and 
the gentleman from Farmington, will get 
nothing 2 to support his state engine with. 
Sir, this is going round Robin Hood's barn, 
to get at the same thing, instead of coming 
directly up to it. I would have a gentleman 
walk directly up. Sir, I would go into the 
principle, but it is unnecessary. 



290 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 11-12, 



Messrs. Stevens, Lanman, and Pitkin, 
spoke on the question, but we must omit 
their remarks. Mr. Pitkin spoke against 
the provision, and the other gentlemen 
for it — Adjourned to 8 this evening. 

Evening.— Ill health would not admit 
of our attending this evening, but noth- 
ing of importance was done, but the 
question on this section was approved. 

The remaining articles of the instru- 
ment, were gone through with, and 
slightly amended. 



Historical Notes, September 11, 1818 

For the background of this day's major debate on religion and most of the specific points ad- 
dressed by the speakers, see S.R., XVIII, xiii-xvii, xxvi-xxviii, xl, and above, pp. xxii-xxiii. The 
current certificate law, mentioned by several speakers, was the May 1817 act securing rights and 
privileges to Christian denominations (S.R., XVIII, 179-80, 179n). Pierpont Edwards' apparent 
reference to current arrangements allowing persons to withdraw entirely from religious affiliation 
and taxation is obscure; while this undoubtedly happened in practice, it appears to have been ille- 
gal, as others emphasized during the debate. 

We agree with Horton ("Annotated Debates," p.66n) that the "Mr. Hart" who took part in pro- 
ceedings on this date was probably Samuel Hart of Berlin. Entering the debate on this day was 
Zacheus Waldo of Windham, who had earlier represented his town in the Assembly and who had 
been appointed a justice of the peace for Windham County at the May 1818 session. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 11, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818. 

1. loosing] losing Journal, Sept. 29, 1818. 

2. nothing] enough Journal, Sept, 29, 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 291 

[Convention Journal, September 12, 1818] 

Saturday, September 12th 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

On motion of Mr. Stevens, the Committee appointed to make up the Deben- 
ture, were directed to make up the same according to the rule of the House of 
Representatives. 

On motion of Mr. Treadwell to add a new Section to the 3rd Article to pro- 
vide for a nomination of twenty persons to be made out by the electors the year 
preceding the choice of Senators and for choosing the Senators from such 
nomination instead of the 5th and 6th Sections of the 3d Article, and the 2nd 
and 3d Sections of the 4th Article and to strike out the sd. 5th & 6th Sections 
and the sd. 2d and 3d Sections and to provide for the choice of other officers in 
a manner similar to that pointed out in said Sections it was determined in the 
negative by yeas and Nays as follows — 

For the motion 

Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, H. Terry, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buel, Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchell, 
Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Thomas, 
Tolls, Deming, Isham, Abel, Whiting, L. Sanford, Burton, Bennet, R. W. Wil- 
liams, Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffing, Ingalls, Nichols, Childs, Hayden, Mills, 
Lambert, Hale, North, Brace, Hopkins, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone-J. Battel, 
Church, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battel, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, 
Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, 
Edgerton, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott, 76 yeas. 

Against the motion 

Messrs. Sylvr. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Dixon, Saml. Wells, Hub- 
bard, Wilcox, Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshal, J. Phelps, N. 
Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, 
Osborn, Marks, Miles, Ives, Adams, Manwaring, Learned, Turner, Lanman, 
Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, Wm. Williams, Braman, Brockway, Comstock, C. 
Smith, W. Randall Jr., Palmer, Kimball, Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. 
Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. S. Wells, W. 
Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, Gregory, Eversley, King, Gilbert, 
Graves, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, A. Gregory, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, L. 
Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, 
Matthewson, Hall, G. Learned, Keigwin, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, A. 
Phelps, Burnham, St. John, Merwin, Butler, Trowbridge, D. Johnson, Mar- 
shall, Bushnel, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, 



292 public records September 12, 

Chapman, Young, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Crawford, Paul. 
Sibley, Brigham, Nays 1 12. 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott to amend the 4th Section of the 3d Article by 
adding next after '' electors " in the 2d line the words " by Districts ." it was deter- 
mined in the negative by yeas and Nays as follows 

For the motion 

Messrs. Sylvr. Wells, Saml. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Saml. Wells, Hubbard, 
Barker. J. Pettibone Jr., Jones. E. Marshall, D. Tomlinson, Manwaring, Turner. 
Fox, Daboll. W. Williams. Warren, Brockway, W. Randall Jr.. Comstock, W. 
Randall. Gallup, Avery. Hill. G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, C. Sanford, Lock- 
wood. T S. Wells, Shelton. Seeley, Fairman, Moses Gregory, Eversley, 
Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, Webb, Waldo, Tilden, Babcock, Keigwin. 
Freeman, Gurley. Welch, Douglas, Pinney, A. Phelps, Bacon, Wolcott, Stow, 
Sage, Hurd, Lyman. Guernsey, Chapman, Young. Burrows, Peters, N. John- 
son, Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham, Yeas 66. 

Against the motion 

Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin. Jenks. Reed. H. Terry, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, Wilcox. A. Church, Treat, Buel, E. Phelps. Whittlesey, 
Grannis. Mitchell, Lusk, N. Smith, Hull. C. Shelton. Fowler, Rose, Riggs. 
Farnham. Griffing. Todd. R. Pierpont. Clark, Benedict. Bull. Gunn. Sage. 
Hurd. Guernsey. Lyman. Chapman. Young. Burrows. Peters. N. Johnson. 
Crawford. Paul. Sibley. Brigham. D. Pierpont, Osborn, Miles, Adams, 
Thomas. Tolls. Ives. Learned. Turner. Lanman, Fox, Deming, Isham. J. Hyde, 
Abel. Palmer, Lacey, Botsford. Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Gilbert, Burton, A. 
Gregory. Bennett. R. W. Williams. Payne, Frost, Fuller. E. Griffing. L. Warren, 
Hutchins, Woodward. Dunlap. Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Larned. Nichols, 
McLellan, Childs. O. Wolcott, Hayden, Miles [i.e., Mills], Lambert, Burrall, 
Swift, Burnham, Hale. North. Brace. Hopkins. St. John. Austin. Marsh, A. 
Pettibone. J. Battel, Butler, Trowbridge. S. Church, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, 
W. Battel, Tallmadge, Bushnel, Baldwin, Piatt. Miller, Brainerd. Huntington, 
Hungerford. Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill. Alvord, Root, Edgerton. A. Phelps, Pease, 
E. Hyde, Talcott — Nays. 1 15. — 

And the Convention adjourned until tomorrow - morning at next monday af- 
ternoon at 2-o'Clock. — 






1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



[Convention Debates, September 12, 1818] 



293 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Saturday Sept. 1 2. 

Mr. Treadwell, offered an amend- 
ment of some importance, varied very 
little from one which he had already of- 
fered, and which has already been 
published — Adjourned to 2 o'clock 
Monday morning P. M. 



Textual Notes on the Debates, September 12, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818. 



294 public records September 14, 

[Convention Journal, September 14, 1818] 
Monday September 14th 

The Journal of yesterday's Saturday's proceedings was read. 

The printed copies (one of which is hereto annexed) of the Constitution, as 
amended on its first passage were distributed among the members of the 
Convention. — 

On motion of Mr. Fairchild to amend the 3d Section of the 6th Article by 
adding after the word "Elector" at the end, these words "Nor shall any person 
be entitled to vote in town meetings in consequence of his being an Elector," it 
was determined in the affirmative — 

On motion of Mr. Whiting to amend said Section by striking out the word 
"residence" and to insert in lieu of it the word "settlement," it was determined 
in the affirmative — 

The question was then taken on approving the Section the whole as 
amended, and was determined in the negative . So that said third Section was 
lost. This Section was lost. 

On motion of Mr. Edwards to amend the 3rd Section of the 5th Article by in- 
serting after the word "Assembly" in the 4th line these words "in such manner 
as shall by law be prescribed," it was determined in the affirmative. 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott further to amend said 3rd Section by striking 
out the words " Good Behavior " and inserting " three years " it was determined 
in the negative by yeas & nays as follows 

For the motion 

Messrs. Sylvester Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Wilcox, Barker, J. 
Pettibone, Jones, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, Hull, Clark, Manwaring, Turner, 
Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, Wm. Williams, M. Warren. Brockway, 
Comstock, C. Smith, Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall Jr., Randall, Avery, Cook, 
C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. S. Wells, Seeley. Barnum. Botsford, Eversly, 
Gilbert. Graves, Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Burton, A. Gregory, Webb, Waldo, 
Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman. Gurley, Keigwin. Pinney, A. Phelps, 
Trowbridge, Tallmadge. Bushnell, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott. Stow, Sage, 
Hurd. Lyman. Guernsey. Chapman. Young, Edgerton, D. Burrows, Peters, E. 
Hyde, N. Johnson, Pease. Sibley. Brigham - 74 Yeas . — 

Against the motion, 

Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, Saml. Pitkin. Jencks, Reed, 
Dixon. T. Pitkin. Treadwell, A. Church, Treat. Buel. Grannis, Morse, Mitchell, 
Lusk, Bristoll, N. Smith, C. Shelton, Fowler, Rose. Riggs. Farnham, Todd. R. 
Pierpont, Benedict. Bull. Gunn. D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, Marks, 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 295 

Miles, Adams, Thomas, Tolls, Ives, Learned, Deming, Isham, Abel, Braman, 
G. Tomlinson, Starr, Lacey, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Laccy, Wm. Shelton, 
Fairman. Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Edwards, Sturges, R. W. Williams, Frost, 
Payne, L. Warren, Woodward, Matthewson, Ingalls, Nichols, Childs, O. 
Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, Swift, Burnham, Hale, 
North, Brace, St. John, Austin, Marsh, Merwin, A. Pettibone, J. Battel, Butler, 
D. Johnson, S. Church, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battel, H. Marshall, 
Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, 
Sill, Alvord, Root, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott, 103. Nays. 

On motion of Mr. A. Wolcott to strike out from said Section the words "two 
thirds of the members of each House," and to insert in place thereof the words 
"both Houses," it was determined in the negative. — 

The question was then taken on the Section as amended, by yeas and nays, 
and the same was approved — 

In favor of the Section 

Messrs. N. Terry, S. Hart, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Jenks, Reed, 
H. Terry, Dixon, T Pitkin, Treadwell, Saml. Wells, A. Church, Treat, Buel, 
Grannis, Mitchel, Lusk, Bristoll, N. Smith, Hull, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farn- 
ham, Todd, R. Pierpont, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, 
Osborn, Marks, Adams, Thomas, Tolls, Ives, Learned, Turner, Deming, Isham, 
Abel, C. Smith, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, Wm. Shelton, Botsford, 
Fairman, Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Edwards, Sturges, R. W Williams, 
Payne, Frost, L. Warren, Hutchins, Woodward, Matthewson, Ingalls, Nichols, 
Childs, O. Wolcott, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, 
Burnham, North, Hale, Brace, St. John, Austin, Marsh, Merwin, A. Pettibone, 
J. Battel, Butler, Trowbridge, S. Church, D. Johnson, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, 
W. Battel, Tallmadge, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, 
Huntington, Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, 
Willey, D. Burrows, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott, Miles. — 1 14 Yeas. — 

Against the Section — 

Messrs. Sylvr. Wells, Norton, R. Pitkin, Barker, J. Pettibone Jr., Jones, E. 
Marshall, J. Phelps, Clark, Manwaring, Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Wil- 
liams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, Palmer, Kimball, Wm. 
Randall Jr., Gallup, Avery, C. Sanford, Lockwood-T. S. Wells, Seeley, Stevens, 
Weed, Fairchild, A. Gregory, Webb, Waldo, Tilden, Babcock, A. Phelps, Perry, 
Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, 
Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, Paul, Sibley, Brigham, — 53 Nays. — 



296 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 14, 



On motion of Mr. Swan the 10th Section of the 3 Article, was amended by 
striking out the words " treason " except treason, felony and breach of the 
peace" and inserting in place thereof the words these words "of civil pro- 
cess" — and the Section as amended was approved. — 

On motion of Mr. Edwards to strike out of the 3d Section of the 10th Article 
these words "All officers civil & military ["] & the rest of sentence ending with 
the word "Assembly" and to insert in lieu thereof the following words "All ju- 
dicial and civil officers now in office who have been appointed by the General 
Assembly & commissioned, according to law, and all such officers as shall be 
appointed by said Assembly and commissioned as aforesaid, before the first 
Wednesday of May next, shall continue to hold their offices, until the first day 
of June next, unless they shall before that time resign or be removed from 
office, according to law. The Treasurer & Secretary shall continue in office, 
until a Treasurer and Secretary shall be appointed under this Constitution — All 
military officers shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices 
until they shall resign or be removed according to law." It was determined in 
the affirmative, and the Section as amended was approved. 

On motion of Mr. T. Pitkin to strike out the exception in the 3d Section of 
the 10th Article in the 3d, 4th and 5th lines, the Convention took the same into 
consideration, but before any decision thereon 

The Convention adjourned until tomorrow morning at 8 o' Clock. — 

[Convention Debates, September 14, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Monday Afternoon, Sept. 14. 

Mr. Fairchild, moved an amendment 
to the 3d Section of the 5th [i.e., 6th] arti- 
cle, so as to prevent a person from voting 
in town meeting, on the ground merely of 
his having been made an elector. The 
amendment was voted, 81 to 76, and the 
question on the section was lost, so that 
the whole section died of course. There 
were several amendments offered, and 
some made. 

Mr. A. Wolcott again brought up the 
great question on the judiciary, and it was 
again decided against him. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 297 



Histsorical Notes, September 14, 1818 

The Convention had ordered the printing of a revised version of the draft Constitution for the 
members' further consideration, although this action is not recorded in the Convention's Journal 
and a copy is not contained in the Convention's materials held by the Connecticut State Library. It 
is, however, extant as The Constitution of Connecticut, as amended on its first passage, in the Con- 
vention, and now prepared for the last reading. Printed for the use of the members only (Hartford, 
[1818]): Shaw and Shoemaker, American Bibliography, XVIII, 86. 

Offering a motion for the first time on this date was Samuel Whiting, who had earlier served 
as a justice of the peace and quorum for Fairfield County and as a state representative for his home 
town of Redding. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 14, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818. 



298 public records September 15, 

[Convention Journal, September 15, 1818] 

Tuesday September 15th. 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

The Convention resumed the consideration of Mr. T. Pitkin's motion to 
strike out the exception in the 3d Section of the 10th Article ; which was 
withdrawn by the mover; — 

A motion was then made by Mr. T. Pitkin to strike out the 7th Article relat- 
ing to Religion; "The motion was divided and the question first taken on 
striking out the 1st Section, and was determined in the negative by yeas an[d] 
nays as follows — 

For the Motion 

Messrs. N. Terry, Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, Reed, H. Terry, Dixon, 
T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buel, Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchel, 
Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Osborn, 
Thomas, Tolls, Isham, Abel, Whiting, L. Sanford, Burton, Bennet, Perkins, 
Payne, Frost, Fuller, Griffing, Matthewson, Ingalls, G. Larned, Childs, 
Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, Burnham, Hale, North, Brace, Austin, Marsh, 
A. Pettibone, Jos; Battel, Trowbridge, Swan, Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battel, 
Tallmadge, H. Marshall, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, Huntington, 
Hungerford, Elliot, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. 
Phelps, Pease, Talcott, — 79 yeas . 

Against the motion, Messrs. Sylvr. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, 
Jencks, Saml. Wells, Wilcox, Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone Jr., Jones, Morse, 
E. Marshal, J. Phelps, Bristoll, N. Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, R. Pierpont, Clark, 
D. Tomlinson, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, Learned, Turner, 
Lanman, Fox, J. Hyde, Daboll, W. Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, 
Comstock, C. Smith, W. Randall Jr., Palmer, Kimball, W. Randall, Gallup. 
Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, Starr, Cook, Lacey, C. Sanford, Lockwood, T. S. 
Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, Botsford, Fairman, Gregory, Eversly, 
King, Gilbert, Graves, Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild. Burton, A. Gregory, 
Sturges, Webb, Waldo, Byles, R. W. Williams, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, 
Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, Nichols, Keigwin, O. 
Wolcott, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, Pinney, Phelps, St. John, Merwin, Butler, D. 
Johnson, S. Church, Bushnel, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, 
Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham — 1 14 Nays. — 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 299 

On motion of Mr. Mitchell to amend the 2nd Section by inserting after the 
word "thereupon" these words "no longer belong to said corporation, and," it 
was determined in the negative. 

The question was then taken on the other part of the motion, to strike out the 
sd. 2nd Section, and was determined in the negative by yeas and nays as follows 

For the motion 

Messrs. Hooker, B. Hart, S. Pitkin, Jencks, H. Terry, Dixon, T. Pitkin, 
Treadwell, A. Church, Treat, Buel, Whittlesey, Grannis, Mitchel, Lusk, 
Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farnham, Todd, R. Pierpont, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, 
Osborne, Thomas, Tolls, Isham, Abel, Whiting, Burton, Perkins, Payne, Frost, 
Fuller, E. Griffing, Ingalls, McLellan, Childs, Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, 
Hale, North, Brace, Austin, Marsh, A. Pettibone, J. Battel, Trowbridge, Swan, 
Everett, Hinsdale, W. Battel, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Miller, Brainerd, 
Hungerford, Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Alvord, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. 
Phelps, Pease, Talcott, — 72 Yeas. 

Against the motion, 

Messrs. Sylvr. Wells, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Saml. Wells, Wilcox, 
Barker, E. Phelps, J. Pettibone Jr., Jones, Morse, E. Marshall, J. Phelps, 
Bristoll, N. Smith, Hull, C. Shelton, Clark, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Marks, 
Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, Learned, Turner, Lanman, Fox, Hyde, 
Daboll, W Williams, Braman, M. Warren, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, W. 
Randall Jr., Palmer, Kimball, W Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, G. Tomlinson, 
Starr, Cook, Lacey, Lockwood, T. S. Wells, W. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, 
Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, L. Sanford, King, Gilbert, Graves, 
Stevens, Weed, Edwards, Fairchild, A. Gregory, Sturges, Waldo, Webb, Byles, 
R. W. Williams, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, Freeman, Gurley, 
Woodward, Dunlap, Hall, G. Larned, Nichols, Keigwin, O. Wolcott, Welch, 
Pinney, Burrall, A. Phelps, Burnham, St. John, Merwin, Butler, D. Johnson, S. 
Church, H. Marshall, Bushnell, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, Stow, Sage, Hurd, 
Lyman, Guernsey, Chapman, Young, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham — 114 Nays 

On motion of Mr. N. Terry to insert next after the word "association" in the 
9th line of the 1st Section of the 7th Article, these words "But every person 
now belonging to such congregation, church or religious association, shall 
remain a member thereof, until he shall have separated himself therefrom in 
the manner herein after provided", and to insert "And" instead of "But" next 
after[ — ]it was determined in the affirmative — 

On motion of Mr. N. Terry further to amend said section by inserting next 
after the words "members of in the last line but one, these words "of any such 
Society, to be laid by a major vote of the legal voters assembled at any society 



300 public records September 15, 

meeting warned and held according to law" and striking out the words " of their 
respective societies only " — it was determined in the affirmative — 

On motion of Mr. G. Tomlinson to amend the 1st Section of the 5th Article 
by striking out the words "of Errors, a Superior Court," and inserting in lieu 
thereof these words " which shall consist of a Chief Judge, and not more than 
four other Judges " it was determined in the 

The motion was divided, and the question on striking out decided in the 
negative, 

So the motion was lost. — 

Mr. Edwards offered the following Resolution — to wit — which was 
adopted — to wit — 

Resolved that this convention, at five o'Clock this afternoon, will take the final 
question on the adoption or rejection of the Constitution, by Yeas and Nays. 

On motion of Mr. Butler the 12th Section of the 4th Article was transposed, 
and placed next after the 1 8th Section, so as to be f illcgiblcl t he 18th S ee-: num- 
bered the 18th Section, and the [illegible] numbers of the Sections between the 
12th and 19th Sections were changed in conformity to that arrangement. — 

On motion of Mr. Edwards the draft of the Constitution was referred to the 
Engrossing Committee for correction for the purpose of correcting verbal inac- 
curacies & errors not changing the meaning in phraseology. — 

On motion of Mr. Pitkin to amend the 3d Section of the 3rd Article by 
adding thereto, at the end these words "In case a new town shall hereafter be in- 
corporated, such new town shall be entitled to one Representative only; and if 
such new town shall be made from one or more towns, the town or towns from 
which the same shall be made, shall be entitled to the same number of Repre- 
sentatives as at present allowed; unless the number shall be reduced by the 
consent of such town or towns," it was determined in the affirmative, — and the 
Section was approved as amended. — 

On motion of Mr. Dixon to insert in the 20th Section of the 4th Article by in- 
serting after the words "said Assembly" in the 4th line, these words "and shall 
become bound with sufficient sureties to the Treasurer of the State for the faithful 
discharge of the duties of his office, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law." 

On motion of Mr. Stow to amend the amendment last made to the 1 st Sec- 
tion of the 7th Article by inserting the word "only" next after the words "such 
Society," it was decided in the affirmative. — 

On motion of Mr. Dixon to strike out of the 7th Section of the 1st Article the 
words "or indictments" it was determined in the affirmative. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 301 

The motion formerly made by Mr. Mitchel to add a 23d Section to the "Bill 
of Rights" was considered & rejected and determined in the negative — 

On motion of Mr. N. Terry to amend the 2nd Section of the 3d Article by 
striking out the first part thereof ending with the word "Hartford" in the 7th 
line and inserting in lieu thereof these words "There shall be two stated Ses- 
sions of the General Assembly to be holden in each year, one at Hartford on the 
2nd Thursday of May and the other at New Haven on the second Thursday of 
October," it was determined in the negative. 

The Convention ordered a recess for half an hour, met again at 5 o' Clock 
P.M. when the Draft of the Constitution as amended and approved when read 
by Sections was read through for the last time, before the question final ques- 
tion of acceptance or rejection, — 

The Constitution was then accepted and approved, by Yeas and Nays — 

Yeas 134 — 
Nays 61 
as follows — to wit — 

In favor of the Constitution which has been read. — 

Messrs. Sylvester Wells, N. Terry, S. Hart, Norton, R. Pitkin, Reed, Jencks, 
H. Terry, Dixon, Saml. Wells, Wilcox, Barker, Elisha Phelps , Jona. Pettibone 
Jr., Jones, Morse, Mitchel, E. Marshall, Josiah Phelps , Bristoll, N. Smith, Hull, 
Chs. Shelton, Todd, R. Pierpont, Clark, D. Pierpont, D. Tomlinson, Osborn, 
Andrews, Marks, Miles, Adams, Ives, Manwaring, Learned, Turner, Lanman, 
Fox, Daboll, Wm. Williams, Braman, Brockway, Comstock, C. Smith, Wm. 
Randall Jr., Palmer, Kimball, Wm. Randall, Gallup, Avery, Hill, Tomlinson, 
Starr, Cook, Lacey, Lockwood, T. S. Wells, Wm. Shelton, Seeley, Barnum, 
Botsford, Fairman, M. Gregory, Eversley, Whiting, L. Sanford, King, Gilbert, 
Graves, Edwards, Burton, A. Gregory, Bennett, Sturges, Webb, Waldo, Byles, 
R. W. Williams, Fuller, E. Griffing, L. Warren, Hutchins, Tilden, Babcock, 
Freeman, Gurley, Woodward, Dunlap, Matthewson, Hale [i.e., Hall], G. 
Learned, Nichols, Keigwin, McClellan, O. Wolcott, Welch, Burrall, Douglas, 
Pinney, A. Phelps, Burnham, Hale, North, St. John, Merwin, A. Pettibone, J. 
Battell, Butler, Trowbridge, S. Church, D. Johnson, H. Marshal, Bushnell, 
Miller, Stow, Sage, Hurd, Lyman, Guernsey, Brainerd, Huntington, Hunger- 
ford, Chapman, Young, Alvord, Burrows, Peters, E. Hyde, N. Johnson, 
Crawford, Paul, Sibley, Brigham, — 134 yeas, — 

Against the Constitution, which has been read, 

Messrs. Hooker, B. Hart, Everest, S. Pitkin, T. Pitkin, Treadwell, A. 
Church, Treat, Buel, Whittlesey, Grannis, Lusk, Fowler, Rose, Riggs, Farn- 
ham, Benedict, Bull, Gunn, Thomas, Tolls, Deming, Isham, J. Hyde, Abel, C. 
Sanford, Stevens, Weed, Fairchild, Perkins, Payne, Frost, Ingalls, Childs, 



302 public records September 15, 

Hayden, Mills, Lambert, Swift, Brace, Austin, Marsh, Swan, Everett, 
Hinsdale, W. Battel, Tallmadge, Baldwin, Piatt, Perry, Bacon, A. Wolcott, 
Elliott, Lane, Nott, Sill, Root, Edgerton, Willey, B. Phelps, Pease, Talcott, — 
Nays — 61. — 

Yeas 134 

Nays 61 

Majority — 73 majority 

On motion it was Resolved that It was Resolved by this Convention that 
twenty dollars be allowed to His Excellency Governor Wolcott for his extra 
services as President of this Convention. — 

On motion, Resolved that there be allowed to the Honble. James Lanman, & 
Robert Fairchild, Esqrs. twenty five dollars each, for their extra services as 
Clerks of this convention — 

On motion, Resolved that there be allowed to the Revd. Messrs. Flint, 
Hawes, Cushman, & Nichols twelve dollars each for attending as Chaplains on 
this Convention — that 

Resolved that the Clerks be a Committee to examine, and tax the Bills of the 
Sheriff, and the incidental expences attending the Convention — 

The Report of the Committee appointed to make up the Debenture was ac- 
cepted and it was ordered that the Treasurer be directed pay to the several 
persons named therein, the sums affixed to their names respectively. 

The following Resolution was offered by Mr. Tomlinson viz. 

In Convention September 15th AD. 1818. 

Resolved that the Constitution which has been formed, and approved by this 
Convention, shall be signed by the President, countersigned by the Clerks, and 
deposited in the Office of the Secretary. And it shall be the duty of the Secre- 
tary forthwith to transmit seven hundred copies thereof to the several Town 
Clerks of the several towns in this State, which copies shall be apportioned 
among said Towns according to their respective lists. The said Constitution 
shall, by said town clerks, be submitted to the consideration of the qualified 
voters in said towns for their approbation and ratification, on the 1st monday of 
October next, in the respective town meetings legally warned for that purpose. 

And that the number required to approve and ratify said Constitution be a 
majority of the qualified voters present & voting at such meetings to be con- 
vened agreeably to the Resolution of the General Assembly in such case 
provided, passed at their Session in May last. — which was adopted. — 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



303 



On a motion made, that three fifths of the number of votes to be given by the 
freemen on the question of ratifying the Constitution, be required to ratify & 
adopt the same, it was determined in the negative. 

A similar question was then taken on the number of 4/7 , and then on 5/9 , 
both of which were determined in the negative. — 

A motion was then made that a majority on4y of the qualified voters present 
& voting at the town meetings, to be convened for the purpose of ratifying or 
rejecting the Constitution, be required to ratify the same — 



[Convention Debates, September 15, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Tuesday, Sept. 15. 

Mr. N. Terry, offered two amend- 
ments to the 1st section of the article on 
religion, not varying the sense, but 
merely to render them more explicit, in 
their meaning, and they were passed. 

Mr. T. Pitkin moved to erase the 
whole article which was not done. 

Mr. G. Tomlinson, moved an amend- 
ment, which would reduce the number of 
Judges to five, which did not pass. 

Mr. Edwards, moved a resolution, for 
taking the final question on the Constitu- 
tion, at 5 o'clock this afternoon, which 
was passed. 

Afternoon: Mr. N. Terry, moved an 
amendment which tried the question, on 
two sessions a year, which was lost. 

At 5 o'clock the question was taken 
on the whole instrument, and carried, 
134 yeas to 61 nays, as follows: 
[Roll Call Vote] 

Adjourned to 8 this evening. 



304 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



September 15-16, 



Evening: There was considerable 
struggle to fix the proportion of the free- 
men, for ratifying the Constitution, at 
four-sevenths but lost. A vote was taken 
on five-ninths and lost, 86 to 87. 



Historical Notes, September 15, 1818 

Offering a motion for the first time this day was William Dixon, a justice of the peace and state 
representative from Enfield. The manuscript Journal does not record the outcome of Dixon's first 
motion, but the addition that he proposed appears in the final version of Art. IV, Sec. 20. Horton 
("Annotated Debates," p. 80n) points out that the two words apparently struck out on Dixon's 
second motion appear in the final version of the Constitution. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 15, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 305 

[Convention Journal, September 16, 1818] 

Wednesday Septemr. 16th. 

The Journal of yesterday's proceedings was read. 

On motion of Mr. Edwards, the Journal of last monday's proceedings was 
corrected, by inserting a clause in the Constitution, which was approved and 
adopted on that day, but which by mistake was not then entered on the Journal, 
in the following words — "The Governor and Lieutenant Governor and the 
General Assembly which is to be formed in October next shall have and pos- 
sess all the powers and authorities not repugnant to or inconsistent with this 
Constitution, which they now have and possess, until the 1st Wednesday of 
May next," to be added at the end of the 3d Section of the 10th Article. 

On motion of Mr. Lanman 

Resolved 

That the thanks of this Convention be presented to his Excellency Governor 
Wolcott for the very acceptable & impartial manner in which he has discharged 
the duties of President of this Convention. — 

On which the President made a suitable & impressive address to the 
Convention. 

In Convention at Hartford 

this 16thdayofSepr. 1818 

James Lanman 

Robert Fairchild, Clerks 

Hartford September 16th A.D. 1818. 

Agreeably to the Resolve of the Convention a Copy of the Constitution duly 
Engrossed, was procured, signed by the President of the Convention, and 
Countersigned by the Clerks and deposited in the hands of the Secretary. A 
copy also of the resolve of the Convention passed yesterday, directing the 
copies of the constitution to be printed and transmitted to the respective town 
Clerks in this State &c. was delivered to the Secretary. 

James Lanman, 
Robert Fairchild 
Clerks of the Convention 

State of Connecticut, 

Hartford Septemr. 16 A.D. 1818— 






306 



PUBLIC RECORDS 



The foregoing is a correct Journal of the proceedings of the Convention held 
at Hartford aforesd. on the 26th day (or 4th Wednesday [)] of August 1818 for 
the purpose of forming a Constitution for the people of the State of Connecti- 
cut & according to my belief, from Sep. 10th to Sep. 16th both inclusive. 

Robert Fairchild, 
Clerk. 



[Convention Debates, September 16, 1818] 



[Connecticut Courant] 

Wednesday, Sept. 16. 

A resolution was passed, for deposit- 
ing a copy of the Constitution in the 
Secretary's office, with directions for the 
Secretary, to furnish the town Clerks, in 
the various towns in the State, with 
printed copies. The instrument is to be 
ratified or rejected, on the first Monday 
in October. 

Thanks were voted to the President, 
and the Convention were adjourned 
without day. 



Historical Notes, September 16, 1818 

The printed version of the Constitution distributed to the towns can be found in several ver- 
sions listed in Shaw and Shoemaker, American Bibliography, XVIII, 86-87; other printings 
appeared in the state newspapers prior to the ratification vote. 

Textual Notes on the Debates, September 16, 1818 

The base text is taken from the Courant, Sept. 22, 1818. 



[PRINTED DRAFTS OF THE CONSTITUTION 1 ] 

[Drafting Committee Report I: Declaration of Rights 2 ] 

1. The Committee to whom was referred the subject of drafting a Constitution to be 

2. submitted to the consideration of the Convention beg leave to report in part — the follow- 

3. ing preamble and Bill of rights. 

Per Order PlERPONT EDWARDS, Chairman. 

PREAMBLE. 

1. The people of Connecticut acknowledging with gratitude, the good providence of 

2. God in having permitted them to enjoy a free government, do, in order more effectually 

3. to define, secure, and perpetuate the liberties, rights and privileges which they have deri- 

4. ved from their ancestors, hereby, after a careful consideration and revision, ordain and 

5. establish the following Constitution and form of civil Government. 

ARTICLE I. 

DECLARATION OF RIGHTS. 

1. That the general, great, and essential principles of Liberty and Free Government 
2. may be recognized, and established 

WE DECLARE, 

1. Sec. 1. That all men when they form a social compact, are equal in rights; and 

2. that no man, or set of men, are entitled to exclusive separate public emoluments or privi- 

3. leges from the community. 

1. Sec. 2. That all political power is inherent in the people, and all free governments 

2. are founded on their authority, and instituted for their benefit; and that they have at 

3. all times an undeniable and indefeasible right to alter their form of government in such 

4. manner as they may think expedient. 

1. Sec. 3. The exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, without dis- 

2. crimination, shall forever be free to all persons in this State, provided that the right here- 

3. by declared and established, shall not be so construed as to excuse acts of licentiousness, 

4. or to justify practices inconsistent with the peace, and safety, of the State. 

1. Sec. 4. No preference shall be given by law, to any religious 3 sect or mode of worship. 



1. In these printed drafts, handwritten deletions and additons are generally rendered as 
strikethroughs and small boldface text; footnotes explain more complex textual situations. 

2. The draft Declaration of Rights was submitted to the members on August 28: above, p. 1 65. 
There are three printed copies of the draft in the Convention's records. A handwritten note by assistant clerk 
Robert Fairchild appears at the head of one copy: "This Report was amended as appears by the Journal. 
R.F." The following text includes changes noted in that copy; changes noted in a second copy are indicated 
below in footnotes; the third copy contains no notations. 

3. religious] change to "Christian" indicated in second printed copy. 



308 public records August-September, 

1. See. 5. No person shall be molested for his opinions on any subject whatever, nor 
2. suffer any civil or political incapacity, or acquire any civil or political advantage, in 



3. sequence of such opinions, except in cases provided for in this Constitution. 4 

1. Sec. 6. Every citizen may freely speak, write, and publish his sentiments on all sub- 
2. jects, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty. 

1. Sec. 7. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech, or of 
2. the press. 

1. Sec. 8. In all prosecutions or indictments for libels, the truth may be given in evi- 

2. dence and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts, under the di- 

3. rection of the Court. 

1. Sec. 9. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers and possessions 

2. from unreasonable searches or seizures; and no warrant to search any place, or to seize 

3. any person or things, shall issue without describing them as nearly as may be, nor 
with- 

4. out probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation. 

1. Sec. 10. In all criminal prosecutions the accused hath 5 a right to be heared by him- 

2. self and by counsel; to demand the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confron- 

3. ted by the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process to obtain witnesses in his 

4. favor; and in all prosecutions by indictment or information, a speedy, public trial, by 

5. an impartial Jury. He cannot be compelled to give evidence against himself nor be de- 

6. prived of life, liberty, or property[,] but by due course of law. 

1. Sec. 1 1. No person shall be accused, arrested, or detained, 6 except in cases ascer- 

2. tained 7 by law, and according to forms which the same has prescribed; and no person 

3. shall be punished, but in virtue of a law established and promulgated prior to the offence 

4. and legally applied. 

1. Sec. 12. The property of no person shall be taken for public use, without just com- 
2. pensation therefor. 

person, repu 

1. Sec. 13. All Courts shall be open, & every person for an injury done him in his lands , 

2. goods, person or reputation, shall have remedy, by due course of law, and right and jus- 

3. tice be administered without sale, denial, or delay. 

1. Sec. 14. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed. 

1. Sec. 15. All prisoners shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties ex- 

2. cept for capital offences, where the proof is evident, or the presumption great; and 

3. the privilege of the writ of Habeus Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in case 



4. The words "struck out" are handwritten in the margin of the first printed copy. 

5. hath] change to "shall have" indicated in second printed copy. 

6. The second printed copy indicates that the word "accused" was deleted and the phrase "or 
punished" added. 

7. ascertained] change to "clearly warranted" indicated in second printed copy. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 309 

4. of rebellion or invasion the public safety may require it. 
1. Sec. 16. No person shall be attainted of Treason, or Felony, by the Legislature. 

1. Sec. 17. The citizens have a right, in a peaceable manner to assemble together for 

2. their common good, and to apply to those invested with the powers of government, for 

3. redress of grievances, or other proper purposes, by petition, address, or remonstrance. 

1. Sec. 18. Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defence of himself and the State. 

1. Sec. 19. The military shall in all cases, and at all times, be in strict subordination to 
2. the civil power. 

1. Sec. 20. No soldier shall in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the 
2. consent of the owner; nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. 9 

1. Sec. 21. No hereditary emoluments, provileges, or honors 10 shall ever be granted, or 
2. conferred, in this State. 

1. Sec. 22. No citizen of this State shall be exiled, or prevented from emigrating on 
2. any pretence whatever. 

1. Sec. 23. The right of trial by Jury shall remain inviolate. 



8. It appears that the second printed copy indicates the addition of the words "nor, in any case, 
but by the legislature," found in the final version of the Constitution. 

9. This section appears to have a cross-out mark drawn over it in the first printed copy, but it 
was retained in the final Declaration of Rights. 

10. The words "provileges [sic], or honors" appears to have been lightly crossed out in the first 
printed copy, but they were retained in the final Declaration of Rights. 



310 public records August-September, 

[Drafting Committee Report II: Articles II-IV 11 ] 

THE 

COMMITTEE, 

TO WHOM WAS REFERRED THE 

CONSIDERATION OF 
THE SUBJECT OF DRAFTING A 
CONSTITUTION, 
TO BE SUBMITTED TO THE 
CONVENTION, 

BEG LEAVE TO 
REPORT IN PART. 

Per order, Pierpont Edwards, 
Chairman. 

Article Second. 

DISTRIBUTION OF POWERS. 

1 . § 1 . The powers of government shall be divi- 

2. ded into three distinct departments, and each 

3. of them confided to a separate body of magis- 

4. tracy — to wit — those which are Legislative, to 

5. one; those which are Executive to another, and 

6. those which are Judicial to another. 

1. § 2. No person or collection of persons, being 

2. of one of those departments, shall exercise any =negatived 

3. power properly belonging to cither of the others, 

4. except in the instances herein after expressly di - 

5. rcctcd or permitted. 

Article Third. 

OF THE LEGISLATIVE DEPARTMENT. 

1 . § 1 . The Legislative power of this State shall 

2. be vested in two distinct houses or branches; the 

3. one to be styled The Senate, the other The 

4. House of Representatives, and both togeth- 

5. er THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY. The style 

6. of their laws shall be, Be it enacted by the Sen- 



1 1 . The committee submitted this report on September 1 : above, p. 1 70. The printing was done 
by F. D. Bolles & Co. of Hartford. A handwritten note appears at the top: "Printed Copy annexed the Journal 
and referred to therein— R. Fairchild, Clerk — 16 Sep. 1818." 



1818 



OF CONNECTICUT 



311 



1 

2. 

3. 

4. 

5. 

6. 

7. 

8. 

9. 
10. 
11. 
12. 
13. 
14. 
15. 

1 

2. 
3. 
4. 
5. 
6. 
7. 



tfte a/2*/ House of Representatives of the State of 
Connecticut, in General Assembly convened. 

. § 2. There shall be one stated session of the 
General Assembly, to be holden in each year, al- 
ternately at Hartford and New-Haven, on the 
first Wednesday of May, and at such other times 
as the General Assembly shall judge necessary; 
the first session to be holden at Hartford: but 
the person administering the office of Governor, 
may on special emergencies, convene the Gene- 
ral Assembly at either of said places, at any 
other time. And in case of danger from the 
prevalence of contagious diseases in either of 
said places, or other circumstances, the person 
administering the office of Governor may, by 
Proclamation, convene said Assembly at any 
other place in this State. 

. § 3. The House of Representatives shall con- 
sist of freemen residing in towns from which 
they are elected. The number of Representa- 
tives from each town shall be the same as at pre- 
sent allowed and practised; but the General 
Assembly may reduce the number, provided 
that there shall be always at least one Repre- 



8. sentative from each town. 

1. § 4. The Senate shall consist of twelve mem- 

2. bers, to be chosen annually by the Freemen, 

3. provided the General Assembly may within two 

4. years after taking of the next census of the Uni - 

5. ted States, increase the Senate to a number not 

6. exceeding twenty - one, and shall, within said 

7. time, divide the State into such number of Scn - 

8. atorial districts as they may think necessary. 

1 . § 5. At the meetings of the Freemen held in 

2. the several towns in this state in April annually 

3. after the election of Representatives, each of the 

4. Freemen present shall be invited to present 

5. written ballots for the Senators. The Modera- 

6. tor or presiding officer shall receive the votes of 



Electors. 



Electors 

Electors 
called upon 
to bring in their 



12. Inked brackets have been placed around the words "but the General Assembly . . . from 
each town" and a period inserted in place of the semicolon that precedes them; this indicates the revision of 
this section discussed above, p. xxxv. 



312 public records August-September, 

7. the Freeman , and eount and declare them in 

8. open Freemen's meeting. The presiding offi- 

9. cer shall also make duplicate lists of the per- 

10. sons voted for and of the number of votes for 

1 1 . each, which shall be certified by the presiding 

12. officer; one of which lists shall be delivered to 

1 3. the Town Clerk, and the other within ten days 

14. after said meeting shall be delivered under seal 

15. either to the Secretary of State or to the Sher- 

16. iff of the County in which said town is situated, 

list 

1 7. which e^py shall be directed to the Secretary ef- 

18. State, with a superscription expressing the pur- 

19. port of the contents thereof. And each Sheriff 

20. who shall receive such votes shall within fifteen 

21. days after said Freemen's meeting, deliver, or 

22. cause them to be delivered to the Secretary 

23. of State . 

2 1 

1 . § 6. The Secretary of State , Treasurer and 

2. Comptroller, for the time being shall canvass 

3. the votes publicly. The twelve persons having 

4. the greatest number of votes for Senators, 

5. shall be declared to be elected. But in ca- 

6. ses where no choice is made by the Freemen in Elec 

7. consequence of an equality of votes, the House 

8. of Representatives shall designate by ballot 

9. which of the candidates having such equal 

10. number of votes, shall be declared to be elected. 

1 1 . The return of votes, and the result of the can- 

12. vass, shall be submitted to the House of Re- 

13. presentatives, and also to the Senate, on the 

14. first day of the session of the General Assem- 

15. bly, and each House shall be the final judge of 

16. the election returns and qualifications of its 

17. own members. 

1. § 7. The House of Representatives when as- 

2. sembled, shall choose a Speaker, Clerk, and 

3. other officers. The Senate shall choose its 

4. Clerk and other officers except the President. 

5. A majority of each House shall constitute a quo- 

6. rum to do business; but a smaller number may 

7. adjourn from day to day, and compel the attend- 

8. ance of absent members in such manner, and 

9. under such penalties as each House may pre- 
10. scribe. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 313 

1. § 8. Each House shall determine the rules of 

2. its own proceedings, punish members for disor- 

3. derly conduct, and with the consent of two 

4. thirds expel a member, but not a second time for 

5. the same cause, and shall have all other powers 

6. necessary for a branch of the Legislature of a 

7. free and independent State. 

1. § 9. Each House shall keep a journal of its 

2. proceedings and publish the same when requi- 

3. red by one fifth of its members, except such parts 

4. as in the judgement of a majority may require 

5. secrecy. The yeas and nays of the members of 

6. either House shall at the desire of one fifth of 

7. those present, be entered on the journals. 

1. § 10. The Senators and Representatives shall 

2. in all cases except treason, felony or breach of 

3. the peace, be privileged from arrest during the 

4. session of the General Assembly, and for four 

5. days before the commencement, and after the 

6. termination of any session thereof. And for 

7. any speech or debate in either House, they shall 

8. not be questioned in any other place. 

debates 

1 . § 11. The doors of each House shall be open public 

2. except on such occasions as in the opinion of the 

3. House may require secrecy. 

Article Fourth. 

EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENT. 

1. § 1. The supreme executive power of the State 

2. shall be vested in a Governour, who shall be 

chosen 

3. elected by the freemen of the State and, shall 

4. hold his office for one year from the first Wed- 

5. nesday of May next succeeding his election and 

6. until his successor be duly qualified. No per- 

elector 

7. son who is not a freeman of this State and who 

8. has not arrived at the age of thirty five years shall 

9. be eligible. 



314 public records August-September, 

1 . §JL I3 At the annual meetings of the freemen of 

2. the respective Towns in the month of April im- out 

3. mediately after the election of Senators, the pre- 

4. siding officers shall invite the freemen to present 

5. ballots for him they would elect to be Governor 

6. with his name fairly written. Duplicate lists 

7. of such ballots shall, in the presence of the free- 

8. men be made and certified by the presiding offi- 

9. cer, one of which lists shall be deposited in the 

10. office of the Town Clerk and the other transmit- 

11. ted to the Secretary of State, or Sheriff of the 

12. County, within ten days after the said meetings. 

13. The Secretary of State, Treasurer and Comp- 

14. trailer, for the time being, shall during the month 

15. of April, canvass the returns of the presiding 

16. officer, and publish the name of the person hav- 

1 7. ing a majority of the whole number of votes, 

1 8. who shall be declared to be elected. But if no 

19. person shall have a majority of the whole num- 

20. ber of votes returned, or if two or more shall 

21. have an equal and the highest number of votes, 

22. then the names of the two persons having the 

23. highest number of votes, or the name of the per- 

24. sons having an equal and highest number of 

25. votes (as the case may be) shall be returned to 

26. the General Assembly at their then next ses- 

27. sion, and one of them shall be chosen Governor 

28. on the second day of the session of the said Gen- 

29. eral Assembly, by the joint ballots of both hou- 

30. ses, without previous debate. Contested Elec- 

31. tions for the Governor or Lieutenant Governor 

32. shall be determined by both Houses of the Gen- 

33. eral Assembly, in such manner as shall be pre- 

34. scribed by law. 

1 . § 3. At the annual meetings of the freemen , 

2. immediately after the election of Governor, 

3. there shall also be chosen in the same manner 

4. as is herein before provided for the election of 

5. Governor, a Lieutenant Governor, who shall 

6. continue in office for the same time, and pos- 

7. sess the same qualifications. 



13. The underlining is in ink. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 315 

1 . § 4. The compensations of the Governor and 

2. Lieutenant Governor , shall be established by Senators & Reps 

3. law, and shall not be varied so as to take effect 

4. until after an election, which shall next succeed 

5. the passage of the law establishing said com- 

6. pensations. 

1. § 5. The Governor shall be Captain General of 

2. the Militia of the State, except when called 

3. into the service of the United States. 

1. § 6. He may require information in writing 

2. from the officers in the executive department on 

3. any subject relating to the duties of their res- 

4. pective offices. 

1. § 7. The Governor, in case of a disagreement 
of the Gen. Ass. 

2. between the two Houses, « respecting the time of 

3. adjournment, may adjourn them to such time 

4. as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of 

5. the next stated session. 

1. § 8. He shall from time to time, give to the 

2. General Assembly, information of the state of 

3. the government, and recommend to their con- 

4. sideration, such measures as he shall deem ex- 

5. pedient. 

1. § 9. He shall take care that the laws be faith- 
2. fully executed. 

1. § 10. The Governor shall have the power to 

2. grant reprieves and pardons , after conviction, in 

3. all cases except those of impeachment, and in 

4. capital cases, and to remit fines and penalties 

5. under such rules and regulations as may be 

6. prescribed by law, and in case of a conviction 

7. for a capital offence, he may respite the sentence 

8. until after the session of the next General As - 

9. scmbly. 

until the end of the next Session of the Genl. Ass. 
& no longer. 

1. § 11. All Commissions shall be in the name 

2. and by the authority of the State of Connecti- 

3. cut; shall be sealed with the State Seal, sign- 

4. ed by the Governor, and attested by the Secre- 

5. tary of State . 



316 public records August-September, 

1. § 12. A Secretary of State shall be appointed 

2. in such manner as the General Assembly shall 

3. direct. He shall have the safe keeping and eus - 

4. tody of the public records and documents, and 

5. particularly of the Acts, resolutions and orders 

6. of the General Assembly, and record the same, 

7. and perform all such duties as shall be prcscrib - 

8. cd by law. He shall be the keeper of the Seal 

9. of the State, which shall not be altered. 14 

1. § 13. Every bill which shall have passed both 

2. Houses of the General Assembly, shall be prc - 

3. scntcd to the Governor. If he approves he shall 

4. sign it, but if not he shall return it to the House 

5. in which it originated; who shall enter the ob - 

6. jeetions at large upon their Journal, and pro - 

7. cccd to reconsider it. If after such rcconsidcr - 

8. ation, that House shall again pass it, it shall be 

9. sent with the objections, to the other House, 

10. which shall also reconsider it. If approved, it 

11. shall become a Law. But in such cases the 

12. votes of both Houses shall be determined by 

13. Yeas and Nays; and the names of the members 

14. voting for and against the Bill, shall be entered 

15. on the Journals of each House respectively. 

16. If the Bill shall not be returned by the Govcr - 

17. nor within three days, (Sunday's excepted) af - 

18. tcr it shall have been presented to him, the 

19. same shall be a law in like manner as if he had 

20. signed it; unless the General Assembly, by 

21. their adjournment, prevents its return, in which 

22. case it shall not be a law. 15 

1. § 14. The Lieutenant Governor shall, by vir- 

2. tue of his office, be President of the Senate, and 

3. have, when in committee of the whole, a right 

4. to debate, and when the Senate is equally divi- 

5. ded, to give the casting vote. 



14. Although crossed out in the printed draft, most of this section was retained in Article IV, 
Section 18, of the final Constitution. 

15. A handwritten note appears in the margin: "See Journal p. 15." This reference is obscure, 
since page 15 of the manscript does not seem to relevant; discussion of the provision occurred on Sept. 9. 
Although crossed out in the printed draft, it appears in slightly modified form as Art. IV, Sec. 12, in the final 
Constitution. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 3 1 7 

1. § 15. In case of the death, resignation, refusal 

2. to serve, or removal from office of the Gover- 

3. nor, or of his impeachment, or absence from the 

4. State, the Lieutenant Governor shall exercise 

5. the powers and authority appertaining to the 

6. office of Governor, until another be chosen at 

7. the next periodical election for Governor, and 

8. be duly qualified; or until the Governor im- 

9. peached or absent, shall be acquitted or return. 

1. § 16. When the government shall be adminis- 

2. tered by the Lieutenant Governor, or he shall 

3. be unable to attend as President of the Senate, 

4. the Senate shall elect one of their members, as 

5. President, pro tempore. And if during the va- 

6. cancy of the office of Governor, the Lieutenant 

7. Governor shall die, resign, refuse to serve, or 

8. be removed from office, or if he shall be im- 

9. peached, or absent from the State, the Presi- 

10. dent of the Senate, pro tempore, shall in like 

11. manner administer the government until he be 

12. superseded by a Governor or Lieutenant Gov- 

13. ernor. 

1. § 17. If the Lieutenant Governor shall be re- 

2. quired to administer the Government, and 

3. shall while in such administration, die or resign 

4. during the recess of the General Assembly, it 

5. shall be the duty of the Secretary of State for 

6. the time being, to convene the Senate for the 

7. purpose of choosing a President pro tempore. 

1. § 18. A State Treasurer shall be annually cho- 

2. sen by the Freemen at their Freemen's meeting 

2 4 

3. in April and the votes shall be counted, declar- 

1 3 

4. ed, returned, and canvassed in the same manner 

5. as is provided for the election of Governor and 

6. Lt. Governor, but the votes for Treasurer shall 

7. be canvassed by the Secretary and Comptroller 

8. only. He shall receive all monies belonging to 

9. the State, and disburse the same only as he may 

10. be directed by law. He shall pay no warrant 

1 1. or order for the disbursement of public money 



318 public records August-September, 

12. until the same has been registered in the office 

13. of the Comptroller. 

1 . § 19. A Comptroller of the public accounts shall 

2. be annually appointed by the General Assem- 

3. bly. He shall adjust and settle all public ac- 

4. counts and demands, except Grants and Orders 

5. of the General Assembly. He shall prescribe 

6. the mode of keeping and rendering all public 

7. accounts. He shall ex officio be one of the Au- 

8. ditors of the accounts of the Treasurer. The 

9. General Assembly may assign to him other du- 

to that 

10. ties in relation to his office and those of the 

1 1 . Treasurer, and shall prescribe the manner in 

12. which his duties shall be performed. 

1. § 20. A Sheriff shall be appointed in each 

2. County, by the General Assembly, who shall 

3. hold his office for three years. 

A Sheriff shall be appointed in each County by the General Ass. who shall hold his office for three years, re- 
movable by said Ass. & in case the any Shff. of any Co. shall die or resign the Gov. may fill the vacancy 
occasioned thereby until the same shall be filled by the Genl. Ass. 

1. § 21. A statement of all receipts, payments, 

2. funds and debts of the State shall be published 

3. from time to time, in such manner, and at such 

4. periods as shall be prescribed by law. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 319 



[Drafting Committee Report III: Articles V-VI 16 ] 



THE 

COMMITTEE, 

TO WHOM WAS REFERRED THE 

CONSIDERATION 

OF THE SUBJECT OF DRAFTING A 

CONSTITUTION, 

OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT, 

BEG LEAVE FURTHER TO 

REPORT IN PART. 

Signed per order, 
PIERPONT EDWARDS, 

Chairman. 

Article Fifth. 

OF THE JUDICIAL DEPARTMENT. 

1. § 1. The Judicial power of the State 

2. shall be vested in a Supreme Court of Er- 

3. rors, a superior Court, and such inferior 

4. Courts as the General Assembly shall from 

5. time to time, ordain and establish. The 

6. powers and jurisdiction of which Courts 

7. shall be defined by law. 

1 . § 2. There shall be appointed in each 

2. County, a sufficient number of Justices of 

3. the Peace, with such jurisdiction in civil 

4. and criminal cases as the General Assem- 

5. bly may prescribe. 

1. § 3. The Judges of the Supreme Court 

2. of Errors, of the Superior & Inferior Courts 

3. and all Justices of the Peace shall be ap- 

4. pointed by the General Assembly. The 

5. Judges of the Supreme Court and of the 

6. Superior Court, shall hold their offices 

7. during good behaviour; but may be remo- 

8. ved by impeachment; and the Governor 



16. The committee submitted this report on September 3: above, p. 204. The printing was done 
by E. Babcock & Son of Hartford. 



320 public records August-September, 

9. shall also remove them on the address of 

10. two thirds of the members of each house 

1 1 . of the General Assembly; all other Judg- 

12. es and Justices of the peace shall be ap- 

13. pointed annually. No Judge or Justice 

14. of the Peace shall be capable of holding 

15. his office after he shall have arrived to 

1 6. the age of seventy years. 

Article Sixth. 

QUALIFICATIONS OF ELECTORS. 

1. § 1. All persons who have been, or shall 

2. hereafter previous to the ratification of this 

3. constitution, be admitted Freemen accord- 

4. ing to the existing laws of this State, shall 

5. be and remain Freemen or electors. 

1. § 2. Every white male citizen of the United 
gained a settlement in this State, 

2. States, who shall have .attained the age of 

3. twenty-one years, and resided in the town 

4. in which he may offer himself to be admit- 

5. ted to the privilege of an elector or freeman , 

6. at least six months preceding; and have a 

7. freehold estate of the yearly value of seven 

in this State 

8. dollars; « or having been enrolled in the mi- 

9. litia, shall have performed military duty 

10. therein for the term of one year next pre- 

11. ceding the time he shall offer himself for 

12. admission, or being liable thereto, shall 

13. have been by authority of law excused 

14. therefrom; or shall have paid a state tax 

15. within the year next preceding, the tefm time 17 canc[?] 

16. he shall present himself for such admission, 

17. and shall sustain a good moral character, 

18. shall, on his taking such oath as may be 

19. prescribed by law, be an elector. 

1 . § 3. No person shall gain a residence so as to 
2. render any town chargeable for his support, 



17. The word "term" has been overwritten to make it appear as "time;" the comma after 
'preceding" has also been inked in. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 321 

3. merely in consequence of being admitted 

4. an elector. 

1 . § 4. The privileges of an elector shall be 

2. forfeited by a conviction of bribery, forgery, 

3. perjury, duelling, fraudulent bankruptcy 

4. Of thelt. or other offence for which an infamous punishmt. is inflicted. 

1. § 5. Every elector shall be eligible to any 

2. office in this state, except in the cases pro- 

3. vided for in this Constitution. 

& town clerk 
1. § 6. The select men . of the several towns 

2. shall decide on the qualifications of electors, 

3. at such times and in such manner, as 

4. may be prescribed by law. 

1. § 7. Laws shall be made to support the 

2. privilege of free suffrage, prescribing the 

3. manner of regulating and conducting e4ee- 

4. tions. and other meetings of the electors, 

5. and prohibiting under adequate penalties, 

6. all undue influence therein, from power, 

7. bribery, tumult and other improper conduct. 

1. § 8. In all elections of officers of the state, 

2. or members of the general Assembly, of- 

3. members of Congress , the votes of the elec- 

4. tors or Freemen shall be by ballot. 

1. § 9. At all elections of officers of the 

2. State, or members of the General Assem- 

3. bly, the electors or freemen shall be priv- 

4. ileged from arrest during their attendance 

5. upon, and going to. and returning from, 

6. the same, except in cases of felony or breach 

7. of the peace, on any civil process 

of the electors 

1. § 10. The freemen's Meetings . for the 

2. election of the several State officers by law 

3. annually to be elected, and members of 

4. the General Assembly of this State, shall 

5. be holden on the first Monday of April in 

6. each year. 



322 public records August-September, 

[Drafting Committee Report IV: Articles VII-XI 18 ] 

THE 

COMMITTEE, 

TO WHOM WAS REFERRED THE 

CONSIDERATION 

OF THE SUBJECT OF DRAFTING A 

CONSTITUTION 

OF CIVIL GOVERNMENT 

TO BE SUBMITTED TO THE 

CONVENTION, 

BEG LEAVE 

TO REPORT. 

Per order, 

PIERPONT EDWARDS, 

Chairman. 

Article Seventh. 

RELIGION. 

1 . § 1 . It being the right and duty of all men 

2. to worship the Supreme Being, the great 

and their right to render that worship 

3. Creator and Preserver of the universe, in 

4. the mode most consistent with the dic- 

5. tates of their consciences; no person shall by law 

6. be compelled to join or support, nor by law 

7. be classed with, or associated to any con- 

8. gregation, church or religious association. 

9. And each and every society or denomination 

10. of christians in this State, shall have and 

1 1 . enjoy the same and equal powers, rights 

12. and privileges; and shall have power and 

13. authority to support and maintain the 

14. Ministers or Teachers of their respective 

15. denominations, and to build and repair 

16. houses for public worship, by a tax on the 

ir 

17. members of the .respective societies only, 

1 8. or in any other manner. 



1 8. The committee submitted this report on September 4: above, p. 208. The printing was done 
by E. Babcock & Son of Hartford. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 323 

1. § 2. If any person shall choose to separate 

2. himself from the society or denomination of 

3. christians to which he may belong, and 

4. shall leave a written notice thereof with the 

5. Clerk of such society, he shall thereupon be 

6. no longer liable for any future expences, 

7. which may be incurred by said society. 

Article Eighth. 

OF EDUCATION. 

1. § 1. The charter of Yale College, as modi- 

2. fied by agreement with the Corporation 

3. thereof, in pursuance of an act of the Gene- 

4. ral Assembly passed in May 1792, is hereby 

5. confirmed. 

1. § 2. The fund, called the SCHOOL Fund, 

a perpetual fund the int. of which shall be 

2. shall remain „ inviolably appropriated to the 

3. support and encouragement of the public, 

4. or common schools throughout this State, 

5. and for the equal benefit of all the people 

6. thereof. The value and amount of said 

7. fund, shall, as soon as practicable, be ascer- 

8. tained in such manner as the General As- 

9. sembly may prescribe, published & record- 

10. ed in the Comptroller's office; and no law 

11. shall ever be made, authorising said fund 

12. to be diverted to any other use than the 

13. encouragement and support of public, or 

14. common schools, among the several 

15. school societies, as justice and equity shall 

16. require. 

Article Ninth. 

OF IMPEACHMENTS. 

1. § 1. The House of Representatives shall 
2. have the sole power of impeaching. 

1. § 2. All impeachments shall be tried by 

2. the Senate. When setting for that purpose 

3. they shall be on oath or affirmation. No 

4. person shall be convicted without the con- 



324 public records August-September, 

5. currence of two thirds of the members pre- 

6. sent. When the Governor is impeached, 

7. the Chief Justice shall preside. 

1. § 3. The Governor, and all other exec- 

2. utive, and judicial officers, shall be li- 

3. able to impeachment; but judgments in 

4. such cases shall not extend further than to 

5. removal from office, and disqualification to 

6. hold any office of honor, trust, or profit un- 

7. der this State. The party convicted shall 

8. nevertheless be liable, and subject to, in- 

9. dictment, trial, and punishment, according 
10. to law. 

1 . § 4. Treason against the State shall con- 

2. sist only in levying war against it, or adher- 

3. ing to its enemies, giving them aid and 

4. comfort. No person shall be convicted of 

5. Treason, unless on the testimony of two 

6. witnesses to the same overt act, or on con- 

7. fession in open court. No conviction of 

8. Treason, or attainder, shall work corruption 

9. of blood, or forfeiture. 

Article Tenth. 

GENERAL PROVISIONS. 

1 . § 1 . Members of the General Assembly, 

2. and all officers, executive and judicial, 

3. shall, before they enter on the duties of 

4. their respective offices, take the following 

5. oath or affirmation, to wit. 

6. I do solemnly swear (or affirm as the 

you 

7. case may be) that 1 will support the Con- 

8. stitution of the United States, and the Con- 

9. stitution of the State of Connecticut, so 

you 

10. long as I continue a citizen thereof; and 

you 

11. that I will faithfully discharge according 

12. to law, the duties of the office of [blank] 

your 

1 3. to the best of my abilities, [blank] 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 325 



you 

14. So help me God. 

1. § 2. Each town shall annually elect Se[-] 

2. lect-men, and such officers of local police, 

3. as the laws may prescribe. 

1. § 3. The rights and duties of all corpora- 

2. tions shall remain as if this Constitution 

with the exception of such regulations & restrictions as are contained in this Constitution 

3. had not been adopted. All officers, civil 

4. and military, shall continue to hold and ex- 

5. ercise their respective offices, until they 

6. shall be superseded by the General Assem- 

7. bly. All laws not contrary to, or inconsis- 

8. tent with, the provisions of this Constitu- 

9. tion, shall remain in force until they shall 

10. expire by their own limitation, or shall be 

1 1 . altered or repealed, by the General As- 

12. sembly in pursuance of this Constitution. 

13. The validity of all bonds, debts, 

14. contracts, as well of individuals as of bod- 

15. ies corporate, or the State, of all suits, of 

or rights of action 

16. actions, « civil, criminal, or penal, whether 

17. commenced or otherwise , both in law and 

18. equity, shall continue as if no change had 

19. taken place. 

No Judge of Sup. Ct. or of the Sup. Ct. of Errors, 

1. § 4.. No member of Congress; no per- 

2. son holding any office under the authority 

3. of the United States; no person holding 

4. the office of Treasurer, Secretary or Comp- 

5. troller of this State ; no Sheriff or Sheriff's 

6. Deputy, shall be a member of the Gene- 

7. ral Assembly. 

1. § 5. Every bill for a resolve, or public 

2. act, or application to the General Asscm - 

3. bly for a gratuitous grant of money, shall 

4. be continued to the next stated session of 

5. the General Assembly. 

1. § 6. Captains and subalterns of the mili - 

2. tia, shall be chosen by those persons with - 

3. in their respective company districts, sub - 



326 PUBLIC RECORDS 

4. jcct to military duty, and when approved 

5. by the General Assembly, shall he com - 

6. missioned by the Governor. 19 

Article Eleventh. 

OF AMENDMENTS OF THE 
CONSTITUTION. 

1 . § 1 . Whenever a majority of the House of 

2. Representatives shall deem it necessary to 

3. alter, or amend, this Constitution, they 

4. may propose such alterations and amend- 

5. ments, which proposed amendments shall 

6. be continued to the next General Assem- 

7. bly, and be published with the laws which 

8. may have been passed at the same session; 

9. and if two thirds of each House at the next 

10. session of said Assembly, shall approve 

11. the amendments proposed, by yeas and 

12. nays, said amendments shall, by the Sec- 

13. retary, be transmitted to the Town Clerk 

14. in each town in this State, whose duty it 

15. shall be to present the same to the inhab- 

16. itants thereof for their consideration at a 

17. town meeting legally warned and held for 

18. that purpose. And if it shall appear, in a 

19. manner to be provided by law, that a ma- 

20. jority of the electors or freemen present at 

21. such meetings, shall have approved such 

22. amendments, the same shall be valid to 

23. all intents and purposes as a part of this 

24. Constitution. 



19. A note in the left-hand margin by these two sections reads "Struck out. 



Constitution of the State of Connecticut. 1 

Preamble. 

The people of Connecticut acknowledging with gratitude, the good provi- 
dence of God, in having permitted them to enjoy a free government, do, in 
order more effectually to define, secure, and perpetuate the liberties, rights and 
privileges which they have derived from their ancestors, hereby, after a careful 
consideration and revision, ordain and establish the following constitution and 
form of civil government. 

Article First. 
Declaration of Rights. 

That the great and essential principles of liberty and free government may 
be recognized and established, We Declare, 

Sec. 1. That all men when they form a social compact, are equal in rights; 
and that no man, or set of men are entitled to exclusive public emoluments or 
privileges from the community. 

Sec. 2. That all political power is inherent in the people, and all free govern- 
ments are founded on their authority, and instituted for their benefit; and that 
they have at all times an undeniable and indefeasible right to alter their form of 
government in such manner as they may think expedient. 

Sec. 3. The exercise and enjoyment of religious profession and worship, 
without discrimination, shall forever be free to all persons in this State; pro- 
vided, that the right hereby declared and established, shall not be so construed 
as to excuse acts of licentiousness, or to justify practices inconsistent with the 
peace and safety of the State. 

Sec. 4. No preference shall be given by law to any christian sect or mode of 
worship. 

Sec. 5. Every citizen may freely speak, write and publish his sentiments on 
all subjects, being responsible for the abuse of that liberty. 

Sec. 6. No law shall ever be passed to curtail or restrain the liberty of speech 
or of the press. 



1. This version of the final Constitution is the one trancribed into the Public Records 
immediately before the records of the 1819 legislative session. We have followed our established 
transcription procedure for manuscripts, which gives preference to the capitalization of the word 
"State." As an additional check, we have compared this version with one submitted to the people 
by order of the Constitutional Convention and published by Elisha Babcock & Son.: A Constitution 
of Civil Government for the People of the State of Connecticut . . . (Hartford, [1818]). 



328 public records September, 

Sec. 7. In all prosecutions or indictments for libels, the truth may be given in 
evidence, and the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts, 
under the direction of the court. 

Sec. 8. The people shall be secure in their persons, houses, papers and pos- 
sessions from unreasonable searches or seizures; and no warrant to search any 
place, or to seize any person or things, shall issue without describing them as 
nearly as may be, nor without probable cause supported by oath or affirmation. 

Sec. 9. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall have a right to be 
heard by himself and by counsel; to demand the nature and cause of the accusa- 
tion; to be confronted by the witnesses against him; to have compulsory 
process to obtain witnesses in his favour; and in all prosecutions by indictment 
or information, a speedy public trial by an impartial jury. He shall not be com- 
pelled to give evidence against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or 
property, but by due course of law. And no person shall be holden to answer for 
any crime, the punishment of which may be death or imprisonment for life, 
unless on a presentment or an indictment of a grand jury; except in the land or 
naval forces, or in the militia when in actual service in time of war, or public 
danger. 

Sec. 10. No person shall be arrested, detained or punished, except in cases 
clearly warranted by law. 

Sec. 1 1. The property of no person shall be taken for public use, without just 
compensation therefor. 

Sec. 12. All courts shall be open, and every person, for an injury done him in 
his person, property or reputation, shall have remedy by due course of law, and 
right and justice administered without sale, denial or delay. 

Sec. 13. Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed. 

Sec. 14. All prisoners shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient 
sureties, except for capital offences, where the proof is evident, or the pre- 
sumption great; and the privileges of the writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be 
suspended, unless, when in case of rebellion or invasion, the public safety may 
require it; nor in any case, but by the legislature. 

Sec. 15. No person shall be attainted of treason or felony, by the legislature. 

Sec. 16. The citizens have a right, in a peaceable manner, to assemble for 
their common good, and to apply to those invested with the powers of govern- 
ment, for redress of grievances, or other proper purposes, by petition, address 
or remonstrance. 

Sec. 17. Every citizen has a right to bear arms in defence of himself and the 
State. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 329 

Sec. 1 8. The military shall, in all cases, and at all times, be in strict subordi- 
nation to the civil power. 

Sec. 19. No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house, with- 
out the consent of the owner; nor in time of war, but in a manner to be 
prescribed by law. 

Sec. 20. No hereditary emoluments, privileges or honors, shall ever be 
granted, or conferred in this State. 

Sec. 21. The right of trial by jury shall remain inviolate. 

Article Second. 
Of the distribution of Powers. 

The powers of government shall be divided into three distinct departments, 
and each of them confided to a separate magistracy, to wit, those which are leg- 
islative, to one; those which are executive, to another; and those which are 
judicial, to another. 

Article Third. 
Of the Legislative Department. 

Sec. 1. The legislative power of this State shall be vested in two distinct 
houses or branches; the one to be styled The Senate, the other The House of 
Representatives, and both together The General Assembly. The style of their 
laws shall be, Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in Gen- 
eral Assembly convened. 

Sec. 2. There shall be one stated session of the General Assembly, to be 
holden in each year, alternately at Hartford and New-Haven, on the first 
Wednesday of May, and at such other times as the General Assembly shall 
judge necessary; the first session to be holden at Hartford: But the person ad- 
ministering the office of Governour, may on special emergencies, convene the 
General Assembly at either of said places, at any other time. And in case of 
danger from the prevalence of contagious diseases in either of said places, or 
other circumstances, the person administering the office of Governour, may, 
by proclamation, convene said Assembly at any other place in this State. 

Sec. 3. The house of representatives shall consist of electors residing in the 
towns from which they are elected. The number of representatives from each 
town shall be the same as at present practised and allowed. In case a new town 
shall hereafter be incorporated, such new town shall be entitled to one repre- 
sentative only; and if such new town shall be made from one or more towns, the 
town or towns from which the same shall be made, shall be entitled to the same 



330 public records September, 

number of representatives as at present allowed, unless the number shall be re- 
duced by the consent of such town or towns. 

Sec. 4. The Senate shall consist of twelve members, to be chosen annually 
by the electors. 

Sec. 5. At the meetings of the electors, held in the several towns in this State 
in April annually, after the election of representatives, the electors present shall 
be called upon to bring in their written ballots for senators. The presiding offi- 
cer shall receive the votes of the electors, and count and declare them in open 
meeting. The presiding officer shall also make duplicate lists of the persons 
voted for, and of the number of votes for each, which shall be certified by the 
presiding officer; one of which lists shall be delivered to the town clerk, and the 
other within ten days after said meeting, shall be delivered under seal, either to 
the Secretary, or to the sheriff of the county in which said town is situated; 
which list shall be directed to the Secretary, with a superscription expressing 
the purport of the contents thereof. And each sheriff who shall receive such 
votes, shall within fifteen days after said meeting, deliver, or cause them to be 
delivered to the Secretary. 

Sec. 6. The Treasurer, Secretary, and Controller, for the time being, shall 
canvass the votes publickly. The twelve persons having the greatest number of 
votes for senators, shall be declared to be elected. But in cases where no choice 
is made by the electors in consequence of an equality of votes, the house of rep- 
resentatives shall designate by ballot which of the candidates having such 
equal number of votes, shall be declared to be elected. The return of votes, and 
the result of the canvass, shall be submitted to the house of representatives, and 
also to the Senate, on the first day of the session of the General Assembly; and 
each house shall be the final judge of the election returns and qualifications of 
its own members. 

Sec. 7. The house of representatives when assembled, shall choose a 
Speaker, Clerk and other officers. The Senate shall choose its Clerk, and other 
officers, except the president. A majority of each house shall constitute a 
quorum to do business; but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and 
compel the attendance of absent members in such manner, and under such pen- 
alties as each house may prescribe. 

Sec. 8. Each house shall determine the rules of its own proceedings, and 2 
punish members for disorderly conduct, and, with the consent of two thirds, expel 
a member, but not a second time for the same cause; and shall have all other 
powers necessary for a branch of the legislature of a free and independent state. 



2. and] this word is omitted in other contemporary versions of the Constitution. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 331 

Sec. 9. Each house shall keep a journal of its proceedings, and publish the 
same when required by one fifth of its members, except such parts as in the judg- 
ment of a majority require secrecy. The yeas and nays of the members of either 
house, shall, at the desire of one fifth of those present, be entered on the journals. 

Sec. 10. The senators and representatives shall, in all cases of civil process, 
be privileged from arrest, during the session of the General Assembly, and for 
four days before the commencement, and after the termination of any session 
thereof. And for any speech or debate in either house, they shall not be ques- 
tioned in any other place. 

Sec. 1 1 . The debates of each house shall be public, except on such occasions 
as in the opinion of the house may require secrecy. 

Article Fourth. 
Of the Executive Department. 

Sec. 1. The supreme executive power of the State shall be vested in a 
Governour, who shall be chosen by the electors of the State, and shall hold his 
office for one year from the first Wednesday of May next succeeding his elec- 
tion, and until his successor be duly qualified. No person who is not an elector 
of this State, and who has not arrived at the age of thirty years, shall be eligible. 

Sec. 2. At the meetings of the electors in the respective towns in the month 
of April in each year, immediately after the election of senators, the presiding 
officers shall call upon the electors to bring in their ballots for him whom they 
would elect to be governour, with his name fairly written. When such ballots 
shall have been received and counted in the presence of the electors, duplicate 
lists of the persons voted for, and of the number of votes given for each, shall be 
made and certified by the presiding officer, one of which lists shall be depos- 
ited in the office of the town clerk, within three days, and the other, within ten 
days after said election, shall be transmitted to the Secretary, or to the sheriff of 
the county, in which such election shall have been held. The sheriff receiving 
said votes shall deliver, or cause them to be delivered to the Secretary, within 
fifteen days next after said election. The votes so returned shall be counted by 
the Treasurer, Secretary and Controller, within the month of April. A fair list of 
the persons and number of votes given for each, together with the returns of the 
presiding officers, shall be, by the Treasurer, Secretary and Controller, made 
and laid before the General Assembly, then next to be holden, on the first day 
of the session thereof; and said Assembly shall, after examination of the same, 
declare the person whom they shall find to be legally chosen, and give him 
notice accordingly. If no person shall have a majority of the whole number of 
said votes, or if two or more shall have an equal and the greatest number of said 



332 public records September, 

votes, then said Assembly, on the second day of their session, by joint ballot of 
both houses, shall proceed, without debate, to choose a Governour from a list 
of the names of the two persons having the greatest number of votes, or of the 
names of the persons having an equal and highest number of votes so returned 
as aforesaid. The General Assembly shall by law prescribe the manner in 
which all questions concerning the election of a Governour, or Lieutenant 
Governour, shall be determined. 

Sec. 3. At the annual meetings of the electors, immediately after the elec- 
tion of Governour, there shall also be chosen in the same manner as is herein 
before provided for the election of Governour, a Lieutenant Governour, who 
shall continue in office for the same time, and possess the same qualifications. 

Sec. 4. The compensations of the Governour, Lieutenant Governour, Sena- 
tors and Representatives, shall be established by law, and shall not be varied so 
as to take effect until after an election, which shall next succeed the passage of 
the law establishing said compensations. 

Sec. 5. The Governour shall be Captain General of the militia of the State, 
except when called into the service of the United States. 

Sec. 6. He may require information in writing from the officers in the execu- 
tive department, on any subject relating to the duties of their respective offices. 

Sec. 7. The Governour, in case of a disagreement between the two houses of 
the General Assembly, respecting the time of adjournment, may adjourn them to 
such time as he shall think proper, not beyond the day of the next stated session. 

Sec. 8. He shall, from time to time, give to the General Assembly, informa- 
tion of the state of the government, and recommend to their consideration such 
measures as he shall deem expedient. 

Sec. 9. He shall take care that the laws be faithfully executed. 

Sec. 10. The Governour shall have power to grant reprieves after conviction, 
in all cases except those of impeachment, until the end of the next session of 
the General Assembly, and no longer. 

Sec. 1 1. All commissions shall be in the name and by authority of the State 
of Connecticut; shall be sealed with the State seal, and signed by the 
Governour, and attested by the Secretary. 

Sec. 12. Every bill which shall have passed both [houses] 3 of the General 
Assembly, shall be presented to the Governour. If he approves, he shall sign 
and transmit it to the Secretary, but if not, he shall return it to the house in 
which it originated, with his objections, which shall be entered on the journals 
of the house; who shall proceed to reconsider the bill. If after such reconsidera- 
tion, that house shall again pass it, it shall be sent, with the objections, to the 



3. The word "houses" is missing from the version in the Public Records. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 333 

other house, which shall also reconsider it. If approved, 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 and against the bill, shall be en- 
tered on the journals of each house respectively. If the bill shall not be returned 
by the Governour within three days, Sundays 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 adjournment, prevents its return, in 
which case it shall not be a law. 

Sec. 13. The Lieutenant Governour shall, by virtue of his office, be presi- 
dent of the Senate, and have, when in committee of the whole, a right to debate, 
and when the Senate is equally divided, to give the casting vote. 

Sec. 14. In case of the death, resignation, refusal to serve, or removal from 
office of the Governour, or of his impeachment, or absence from the State, the 
Lieutenant Governour shall exercise the powers and authority appertaining to 
the office of Governour, until another be chosen at the next periodical election 
for Governour, and be duly qualified; or until the Governour impeached or 
absent, shall be acquitted or return. 

Sec. 15. When the government shall be administered by the Lieutenant 
Governour, or he shall be unable to attend as president of the Senate, the Senate 
shall elect one of their members, as president pro tempore. And if during the 
vacancy of the office of Governour, the Lieutenant Governour shall die, resign, 
refuse to serve, or be removed from office, or if he shall be impeached, or 
absent from the State, the president of the Senate pro tempore, shall, in like 
manner, administer the government until he be superseded by a Governour or 
Lieutenant Governour. 

Sec. 16. If the Lieutenant Governour shall be required to administer the gov- 
ernment, and shall, while in such administration, die or resign during the recess 
of the General Assembly, it shall be the duty of the Secretary, for the time being, 
to convene the Senate for the purpose of choosing a president pro tempore. 

Sec. 17. A Treasurer shall annually be chosen by the electors at their meet- 
ing in April; and the votes shall be returned, counted, canvassed, and declared, 
in the same manner as is provided for the election of Governour and Lieutenant 
Governour; but the votes for Treasurer shall be canvassed by the Secretary and 
Controller only. He shall receive all monies belonging to the State, and dis- 
burse the same only as he may be directed by law. He shall pay no warrant, or 
order for the disbursement of public money, until the same has been registered 
in the office of the Controller. 

Sec. 18. A Secretary shall be chosen next after the Treasurer, and in the 
same manner; and the votes for Secretary shall be returned to, and counted, 



334 public records September, 

canvassed, and declared by the Treasurer and Controller. He shall have the safe 
keeping and custody of the public records and documents, and particularly of 
the acts, resolutions, and orders of the General Assembly, and record the same; 
and perform all such duties as shall be prescribed by law. He shall be the keeper 
of the seal of the State, which shall not be altered. 

Sec. 19. A Controller of the public accounts shall be annually appointed by 
the General Assembly. He shall adjust and settle all public accounts and de- 
mands, except grants and orders of the General Assembly. He shall prescribe 
the mode of keeping and rendering all public accounts. He shall, ex officio, be 
one of the auditors of the accounts of the Treasurer. The General Assembly 
may assign to him other duties in relation to his office, and to that of the Trea- 
surer, and shall prescribe the manner in which his duties shall be performed. 

Sec. 20. A sheriff shall be appointed in each county by the General Assem- 
bly, who shall hold his office for three years, removeable by said Assembly, 
and shall become bound with sufficient sureties, to the Treasurer of the State, 
for the faithful discharge of the duties of his office, in such manner as shall be 
prescribed by law: in case the sheriff of any county shall die or resign, the 
Governour may fill the vacancy occasioned thereby, until the same shall be 
filled by the General Assembly. 

Sec. 2 1 . A statement of all receipts, payments, funds, and debts of the State, 
shall be published from time to time, in such manner and at such periods, as 
shall be prescribed by law. 

Article Fifth. 
Of the Judicial Department. 

Sec. 1. The judicial power of the State shall be vested in a Supreme Court of 
Errors, a Superiour Court, and such inferiour courts as the General Assembly 
shall, from time to time, ordain and establish: the powers and jurisdiction of 
which courts shall be defined by law. 

Sec. 2. There shall be appointed in each county, a sufficient number of jus- 
tices of the peace, with such jurisdiction in civil and criminal cases, as the 
General Assembly may prescribe. 

Sec. 3. The judges of the Supreme Court of Errors, of the superiour and 
inferiour courts, and all justices of the peace, shall be appointed by the General 
Assembly, in such manner as shall by law be prescribed. The judges of the Su- 
preme Court, and of the Superiour Court, shall hold their offices during good 
behaviour: but may be removed by impeachment; and the Governour shall also 
remove them on the address of two thirds of the members of each house of the 
General Assembly: All other judges and justices of the peace shall be 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 335 

appointed annually. No judge or justice of the peace shall be capable of holding 
his office, after he shall arrive at the age of seventy years. 

Article Sixth. 
Of the Qualifications of Electors. 

Sec. 1. All persons who have been, or shall hereafter, previous to the ratifi- 
cation of this Constitution, be admitted freemen, according to the existing laws 
of this State, shall be electors. 

Sec. 2. Every white male citizen of the United States, who shall have gained 
a settlement in this State, attained the age of twenty one years, and resided in 
the town in which he may offer himself to be admitted to the privilege of an 
elector, at least six months preceding, and have a freehold estate of the yearly 
value of seven dollars in this State; or having been enrolled in the militia, shall 
have performed military duty therein for the term of one year next preceding 
the time he shall offer himself for admission, or being liable thereto, shall have 
been, by authority of law, excused therefrom; or shall have paid a State tax 
within the year next preceding the time he shall present himself for such admis- 
sion; and shall sustain a good moral character; shall, on his taking such oath as 
may be prescribed by law, be an elector. 

Sec. 3. The privileges of an elector shall be forfeited by a conviction of brib- 
ery, forgery, perjury, duelling, fraudulent bankruptcy, theft, or other offence for 
which an infamous punishment is inflicted. 

Sec. 4. Every elector shall be eligible to any office in this State, except in 
cases provided for in this constitution. 

Sec. 5. The select men and town clerk of the several towns, shall decide on 
the qualifications of electors, at such times, and in such manner as may be pre- 
scribed by law. 

Sec. 6. Laws shall be made to support the privilege of free suffrage, pre- 
scribing the manner of regulating and conducting meetings of the electors, and 
prohibiting under adequate penalties, all undue influence therein, from power, 
bribery, tumult, and other improper conduct. 

Sec. 7. In all elections of officers of the State or members of the General As- 
sembly, the votes of the electors shall be by ballot. 

Sec. 8. At all elections of officers of the State, or members of the General 
Assembly, the electors shall be privileged from arrest, during their attendance 
upon, and going to, and returning from the same, on any civil process. 

Sec. 9. The meetings of the electors for the election of the several State offi- 
cers, by law, annually to be elected, and members of the General Assembly of 
this State, shall be holden on the first monday of April in each year. 



336 public records September, 

Article Seventh. 
Of Religion. 

Sec. 1 . It being the duty of all men to worship the Supreme Being, the great 
Creator and Preserver of the Universe, and their right to render that worship, in 
the mode most consistent with the dictates of their consciences; no person shall 
by law be compelled to join or support, nor be classed with, or associated to, 
any congregation, church or religious association. But every person now be- 
longing to such congregation, church, or religious association, shall remain a 
member thereof, until he shall have separated himself therefrom, in the manner 
hereinafter provided. And each and every society or denomination of chris- 
tians in this State, shall have and enjoy the same and equal powers, rights and 
privileges; and shall have power and authority to support and maintain the min- 
isters or teachers of their respective denominations, and to build and repair 
houses for public worship, by a tax on the members of any such society only, to 
be laid by a major vote of the legal voters assembled at any society meeting, 
warned and held according to law, or in any other manner. 

Sec. 2. If any person shall choose to separate himself from the society or de- 
nomination of christians to which he may belong, and shall leave a written 
notice thereof with the clerk of such society, he shall there upon 4 be no longer 
liable for any future expences which may be incurred by said society. — 

Article Eighth. 
Of Education. 

Sec. 1 . The charter of Yale College, as modified by agreement with the cor- 
poration thereof, in pursuance of an act of the General Assembly, passed in 
May 1792, is hereby confirmed. 

Sec. 2. The fund, commonly called the School Fund, shall remain a perpet- 
ual fund, the interest of which shall be inviolably appropriated to the support 
and encouragement of the public, or common schools throughout the State, 
and for the equal benefit of all the people thereof. The value and amount of said 
fund shall, as soon as practicable, be ascertained in such manner as the General 
Assembly may prescribe, published, and recorded in the Controller's office; 
and no law shall ever be made, authorizing said fund to be diverted to any other 
use than the encouragement and support of public, or common schools, among 
the several school societies, as justice and equity shall require. 



4. there upon] "thereupon" in other contemporary versions. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 337 

Article Ninth. 
Of Impeachments. 

Sec. 1 . The house of representatives shall have the sole power of impeaching. 

Sec. 2. All impeachments shall be tried by the Senate. When sitting for that 
purpose, they shall be on oath or affirmation. No person shall be convicted 
without the concurrence of two thirds of the members present. When the 
Governour is impeached, the Chief Justice shall preside. 

Sec. 3. The Governour, and all other executive and judicial officers, shall be 
liable to impeachment; but judgments in such cases shall not extend further 
than to removal from office, and disqualification to hold any office of honour, 
trust, or profit under this State. The party convicted, shall, nevertheless, be 
liable and subject to indictment, trial, and punishment according to law. 

Sec. 4. Treason against the State, shall consist only in levying war against it, 
or adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No person shall be 
convicted of treason, unless on the testimony of two witnesses to the same 
overt act, or on confession in open court. No conviction of treason, or attainder, 
shall work corruption of blood, or forfeiture. — 

Article Tenth. 
General Provisions. 

Sec. 1. Members of the General Assembly, and all officers, executive and 
judicial, shall, before they enter on the duties of their respective offices, take 
the following oath or affirmation to wit; 

You do solemnly swear (or affirm, as the case may be) that you will support 
the constitution of the United States, and the constitution of the State of Con- 
necticut, so long as you continue a citizen thereof; and that you will faithfully 

discharge, according to law, the duties of the office of to 

the best of your abilities. 

So help you God. 

Sec. 2. Each town shall annually elect select men, and such officers of local 
police, as the laws may prescribe. 

Sec. 3. The rights and duties of all corporations shall remain as if this consti- 
tution had not been adopted; with the exception of such regulations and 
restrictions as are contained in this constitution. All judicial and civil officers 
now in office, who have been appointed by the General Assembly, and com- 
missioned according to law, and all such officers as shall be appointed by the 
said Assembly, and commissioned as aforesaid, before the first Wednesday of 
May next, shall continue to hold their offices until the first day of June next, 



338 public records September, 

unless they shall before that time, resign, or be removed from office according 
to law. The Treasurer and Secretary shall continue in office until a Treasurer 
and Secretary shall be appointed under this constitution. All military officers 
shall continue to hold and exercise their respective offices, until they shall 
resign or be removed according to law. All laws not contrary to, or inconsistent 
with the provisions of this constitution, shall remain in force, until they shall 
expire by their own limitation, or shall be altered or repealed by the General 
Assembly, in pursuance of this constitution. The validity of all bonds, debts, 
contracts, as well of individuals as of bodies corporate, or the State, of all suits, 
actions, or rights of action, both in law and equity, shall continue as if no 
change had taken place. The Governour, Lieutenant Governour, and General 
Assembly, which is to be formed in October next, shall have, and possess, all 
the powers and authorities, not repugnant to, or inconsistent with this constitu- 
tion, which they now have and possess, until the first Wednesday of May next. 

Sec. 4. No judge of the Superiour Court, or of the Supreme Court of Errors; 
no member of Congress; no person holding any office under the authority of 
the United States; no person holding the office of Treasurer, Secretary, or Con- 
troller: no sheriff, or sheriff's deputy, shall be a member of the General 
Assembly. — 

Article Eleventh. 
Of Amendments of the Constitution. 

Whenever a majority of the house of representatives shall deem it necessary 
to alter, or amend this constitution, they may propose such alterations and 
amendments; which proposed amendments shall be continued to the next Gen- 
eral Assembly, and be published with the laws which may have been passed at 
the same session; and if two thirds of each house, at the next session of said As- 
sembly, shall approve the amendments proposed, by yeas and nays, said 
amendments shall, by the Secretary, be transmitted to the town clerk in each 
town in this State; whose duty it shall be to present the same to the inhabitants 
thereof, for their consideration, at a town meeting, legally warned and held for 
that purpose: and if it shall appear in a manner to be provided by law, that a ma- 
jority of the electors present at such meetings, shall have approved such 
amendments, the same shall be valid, to all intents and purposes, as a part of 
this constitution. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 339 

Done in Convention on the fifteenth day of September, in the year of our 
Lord one thousand eight hundred and eighteen, and of the Independence of the 
United States the forty third. 

By order of the Convention. Oliver Wolcott, President. 

James Lanman, 

Robert Fairchild, Clerks. 

In Convention September 15, A.D. 1818. 

Directed, that the Constitution which has been framed, and approved by this 
Convention, shall be signed by the president, countersigned by the clerks, and 
deposited in the office of the Secretary. And it shall be the duty of the Secretary 
forthwith to transmit seven hundred copies thereof, to the town clerks of the 
several towns in this State, which copies shall be apportioned among said 
towns according to their respective lists. The said constitution shall, by said 
town clerks, be submitted to the consideration of the qualified voters in said 
towns, for their approbation, and ratification, on the first Monday of October 
next, in the respective town meetings legally warned for that purpose. And that 
the number required to approve, and ratify said constitution, be a majority of 
the qualified voters present, and voting at such meetings, to be convened agree- 
ably to the resolution of the General Assembly, in such case provided; passed 
at their session in May last. — 



At a General Assembly of the State of Connecticut holden at New- 
Haven in said State, on the second Thursday of October in the year 
of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and EIGHTEEN:' 



Present 



His Excellency Oliver Wolcott Esquire, Governour; 

His Honour Jonathan Ingersoll Esquire, Lieutenant Governour; 



The Honourable Jonathan Brace 

Frederick Wolcott 
Elias Perkins 
William Bristol 
Elijah Boardman 
David Tomlinson 
Sylvester Wells 
John S. Peters 
James Lanman 
Enoch Burrows and 
Peter Webb, Esquires, 



A 



Assistants. 



The Representatives of the several towns were 2 



John Russ, Henry Kilbourn from Hartford 

Luther Beckly, Andrew Pratt from Berlin 

Tracy Peck from Bristol 

Sylvester Norton from Burlington 

William Stone from Canton 

Richard Pitkin, Levi Goodwin from East-Hartford 

Timothy Ellsworth, Abner Reed from East- Windsor 






1. The session ran from October 8 to October 30, 1818: House Journal. 

2. On September 28, 1818, the Mirror opined that the "political complexion of the House of 
Representatives, will be about the same as it was in the Convention." The votes for the appointment 
of a U.S. senator (below, p. 345n) indicate that the reform coalition had a majority of about thirty; 
historians, drawing on newspaper accounts, have estimated that there were about 120 Republicans 
and Tolerationists in the House and 70 Federalists, with the remaining members acting independently. 
Morse, Neglected Period, p. 30; Brownsword, "Political Patterns," p. 105. 



342 public records October, 

Henry Terry, William Dixon from Enfield 

John Mix, George Norton from Farmington 

Samuel Welles, Marvin Dayton from Glastenbury 

Benajah Holeomb 2d, John Willey from Granby 

Samuel Benjamin, Israel Williams from Hartland 

Joel Foote from Marlborough 

Oliver C. Phelps, Asa Hoskins from Simsbury 

Roswell Moore, Chester Grannis from Southington 

Horace King, Elisha Gunn from Suffield 

Asher Robbins, Levi Robbins from Wethersfield 

Odiah Loomis, Joseph H. Russell from Windsor 

Thomas Ward, Henry W. Edwards from New-Haven 

Samuel A. Foote, Silas Hitchcock from Cheshire 

Eli Fowler, Josiah J. Linsley from Branford 

Sheldon Curtiss from Derby 

James Thompson from East-Haven 

Nathaniel Griffing, William Todd from Guilford 

Russell Pierpont from Hamden 

Elisha Curtiss from Meriden 

Philo Bronson from Middlebury 

Benjamin Bull, Samuel B. Gunn from Milford 

Stephen Munson from North-Haven 

Abel Wheeler from Oxford 

Warren Mitchell from Southbury 

James Humiston, George Merriman from Wallingford 

Ashley Scott, Andrew Adams from Waterbury 

Justus Thomas, Chauncey Tolles from Woodbridge 

Erastus Welton from Wolcott 

Amasa Learned, William Stockman from New-London 

Charles Thomas, Erastus Coit from Norwich 

William Whiting from Bozrah 

Samuel A. Peters, John R. Watrous from Colchester 

Andrew Hyde from Franklin 

William Cogswell from Griswold 

Noyes Barber, Philip Gray from Groton 

Joseph L. Lyon from Lisbon 

Peter Comstock, Samuel B. Mather from Lyme 

John Fitch from Montville 

Samuel Chapman, Daniel Packer from North-Stonington 

James Cook, Jonathan Brewster from Preston 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 343 

Samuel F. Denison, Amos Williams from Stonington 

Charles Avery from Waterford 

Gideon Tomlinson, Thomas F. Rowland from Fairfield 

Eden Andrews, Matthew Wilkes from Danbury 

Heman Burch from Brookfield 

Isaac Howe, Charles Smith from Greenwich 

Samuel Beardsley, Nathan G. Birdsey from Huntington 

Nathan Seeley from New-Canaan 

Benjamin Bearss from New-Fairfield 

Bennett Perry, Jacob Beers from Newtown 

Benjamin Isaacs, Dan Taylor from Norwalk 

William Sanford, John Meeker from Redding 

Eliphalet Brush, Jabez M. Gilbert from Ridgefield 

William Giddings from Sherman 

James Stevens, Thaddeus Bell from Stamford 

David Plant, James E. Beach from Stratford 

Lewis Fairchild from Trumbull 

Joseph Bennett, Eliphalet Cooley from Weston 

Eliphalet Taylor from Wilton 

Amos D. Allen, Joshua Smith from Windham 

Stephen Knowlton, Jedediah Watkins from Ashford 

Shubael Brown from Brooklyn 

Solomon Payne, Asa Butts from Canterbury 

Asahel Kingsley from Columbia 

Ebenezer Griffin from Hampton 

Robert Grosvenor, James Danielson from Killingly 

Charles Abel, Joshua Hall from Lebanon 

William Bennett, Seth Dunham from Mansfield 

Oliver Coates, Erastus Lester from Plainfield 

Joseph Scarborough, William Osgood from Pomfret 

Jeremiah Young from Sterling 

Wyman Carrol, Jesse Ormsby from Thompson 

Sterry Kinne from Voluntown 

John Fox, Ebenezer Skinner from Woodstock 

Stephen Russell, Phineas Lord from Litchfield 

Zophar Case, Salmon Howd from Berkhempsted 

Joseph H. Bellamy from Bethlem 

Seth Andrews, Joshua Cornwall from Canaan 

Rufus North, Timothy Babcock from Colebrook 

Philo Swift, Noah Rogers from Cornwall 



344 public records October, 

William Stanley, Samuel Lyman from Goshen 

William C. Abernethy, Roswell Alford from Harwinton 

Abel Beach from Kent 

Aaron Austin, Asa Goodwin from New-Hartford 

Homer Boardman, Orange Merwin from New-Milford 

Augustus Pettibone, Nathaniel Stevens from Norfol[k] 

Jacob Hemingway from Plymouth 

Elisha Patterson from Roxbury 

Silas Reed, Alexander Lamb from Salisbury 

Oliver Kellogg, Ansel Sterling from Sharon 

Abel Hinsdale, William Battell from Torrington 

Augustus Curtiss from Warren 

John N. Gunn, Noble Day from Washington 

Amos Baldwin from Watertown 

Daniel Phelps, Nathaniel B. Gaylord from Winchester 

John P. Marshall, Elijah Sherman Jr. from Woodbury 

John Alsop, Hosea Goodrich from Middletown 

Enoch Sage, Nehemiah Gates from Chatham 

Abel Lyman, Manoah Camp from Durham 

Ezra Brainard, John Brainard 2d from Haddam 

Chevers Brainard, William Hungerford from East-Haddam 

George Elliott, Dan Lane from Killingworth 

Ambrose Whittlesey Jr., Samuel Colt from Saybrook 

Eliphalet Young, William Eldridge from Tolland 

Ichabod M. Warner from Bolton 

Elisha Edgerton, Daniel White from Coventry 

Asa Willey from Ellington 

Simon House, Thomas Wells from Hebron 

Reuben Chapin, Oliver Chapin 2d from Somers 

Jasper Hyde, Ephraim Dimick from Stafford 

John Crawford, Eleazer Bugbee from Union 

Lemuel King from Vernon 

Spafford Brigham, Daniel Glazier from Willington 

Gideon Tomlinson Esquire, Speaker; and 

Samuel A. Foote and Henry W. Edwards, Esquires, Clerks. 3 



3. Tomlinson had been speaker and Foote had been a clerk at the previous session. Edwards 
(1779-1847), who represented New Haven at both 1818 sessions, was the son of Judge Pierpont 
Edwards and the grandson of the great theologian Jonathan Edwards. After graduating from the 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 345 

This Assembly do appoint the Honourable James Lanman Senator for this 
State, in the Congress of the United States, for the term of six years from the 
third day of March next. 4 

To the Honourable General Assembly now in session; 
The committee appointed to receive, sort and count the votes of the freemen 
of this State, returned to this Assembly, for persons to represent this State in the 
sixteenth Congress of the United States, having attended to the business as- 
signed them, beg leave to report, 5 

That they find that of the votes of the freemen of this State, returned to this 
Assembly for persons to represent this State in the sixteenth Congress of the 
United States, the greatest number of votes is given to the seven following per- 
sons, that is to say; 

James Stevens 
Jonathan O. Moseley 
Gideon Tomlinson 
Elisha Phelps 
John Russ 

Henry W. Edwards and 
Samuel A. Foote. 
And the committee report, that the seven persons aforesaid, are duly elected 
representatives of the people of this State in the sixteenth Congress of the 
United States. 

Which is respectfully submitted, 

per order. James Lanman, Chairman. 



College of New Jersey (Princeton) in 1797, he studied at the Litchfield law school. He subsequently 
served in both houses of Congress and was governor of Connecticut in 1833-34 and 1835-38. 
Encyclopedia of Connecticut Biography, I, 113-14; Sobel and Raimo, Governors of the United 
States, p. 165. 

4. Gov. Wolcott had reminded the legislators that David Daggett's term as U.S. senator was 
set to expire in March 1819: House Journal, Oct. 21, 1818. Lanman, who had been elected to the 
Council in spring 1818 and had recently served as clerk of the Constitutional Convention, was 
chosen by the House on the third ballot with 108 votes, after Republican and Tolerationist members 
who had initially supported Elijah Boardman, Nathan Smith, and other candidates switched their 
votes; Daggett, the Federalist candidate, received 79 or 80 votes. House Proceedings of Oct. 22: 
Journal, Oct. 27, 1818; Mercury, Nov. 3, 1818. 

5. The spring election had established a new set of nominees for the U.S. House of 
Representatives; only Moseley was carried over from the previous delegation: above, pp. 9, 9n. The 
votes in the fall election ranged from 4,700 for Stevens to 3,303 for Foote. Mercury, Oct. 20, 1818; 
Journal, Oct. 20, 1818. For Stevens and Phelps, both Democratic-Republicans, see S.R., XVIII, 
190-9 In, and above, p. 4n. Russ had been appointed a justice of the peace for Hartford County in 
May 1817 and served with Stevens on the committee to consider the state taxation system. 



346 public records October, 

This Assembly do appoint John Russ Esquire, and Mr. James Thomas of 
Hartford, with the Controller of Public Accounts, to audit and adjust the ac- 
counts of the Treasurer to the month of April next. 

This Assembly do appoint Jeremiah W. Beardsley Esquire, Justice of the 
Peace within and for the County of Hartford, to hold his office until the first 
day of June next. 

This Assembly do appoint George Cheney, Esquire Justice of the Peace within 
and for the County of Hartford, to hold his office until the first day of June next. 

This Assembly do appoint John Kingsbury Esquire, Justice of the Peace 
within and for the County of New-Haven, until the first day of June next. 

This Assembly do appoint Samuel Peck Esquire, Justice of the Peace within 
and for the County of New-Haven, to hold his office until the first day of June next. 

This Assembly to appoint Stephen Deming, Esquire, Justice of the Peace 
within and for the County of Litchfield, until the first day of June next. 

This Assembly do appoint Dan Lane Esquire, Justice of the Peace within and 
for the County of Middlesex, to hold his office until the first day of June next. 

This Assembly do appoint Russell C. Abernethy Esquire, Major General of the 
third division of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Morris Woodruff Esquire Brigadier General of the 
sixth Brigade of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Obadiah Platts Esquire, Colonel of the seventh Reg- 
iment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Seymour Knapp Esquire, Colonel twelfth Regiment 
of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Uriel Tuttle Esquire, Colonel of the sixteenth Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Samuel C. Selden Esquire, Lieutenant Colonel of 
the third Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint William Ingham Esquire, Lieutenant Colonel of the 
seventh Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Chauncey Crafts Esquire, Lieutenant Colonel of the 
twelfth Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Jeremiah Holt Esquire, Lieutenant Colonel of the 
sixteenth Regiment of Militia in this State. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 347 

This Assembly do appoint Bela Welton Esquire, Lieutenant Colonel of the 
twenty second Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint John C. Ely Esquire, Major of the third Regiment of 
Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint George Buell Esquire, Major of the seventh Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Nathaniel Knapp Esquire, Major of the ninth Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Caleb Cooke 2d Esquire Major of the tenth Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Birdsey Beardsley, Esquire, Major of the twelfth 
Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Dan Carter, Esquire Major of the sixteenth Regi- 
ment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Ethelbert Benham, Esquire, Major of the twenty 
second Regiment of Militia in this State. 

This Assembly do appoint Elisha A. Cowles, Esquire, Major of the second 
Regiment of Riflemen in this State. 

This Assembly do establish Dyer White, Capt. of the 2d flank Company in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Dodd Lieut, of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Hayden Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Chauncey Porter, Captain of the 2d Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Cyrus Bissell, Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Mills, Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Sept. 3d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel Stoughton, Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Sept. 3d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joab Loomis, Captain of the 6th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Richard F. Combs, Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Justus Gillett, Ensign of the 6th Company in the 

1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 



348 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish George J. Whiting, Lieut, of the 2d flank Coy. in the 

2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles S. Tomlinson, Ensign of the 2d flank Coy. in 

the 2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Leman Chatfield, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Huntington, Ensign of the 1st flank Coy. 

in the 3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathan Griffing, Captain of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Reid Anderson Lieut, of the 2d flank Coy. in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State to take rank from June 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lemuel Dickerson, Ensign of the 2d flank Coy. in 

the 3d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles W. Wait, Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Champion Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from September 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah Raymond, Ensign of the 3d Coy. in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Andrew Maynard, Ensign of the 5th Coy. in the 3d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish James Wheeler, Captain of the 6th Corny, in the 

4th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Octr. 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Solomon Curtiss Jr. Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 

4th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 1 6th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Blakeman, Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

4th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 1 6th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Lebbeus Lathrop, Captain of the 1st Corny, in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Royal Jennings, Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Waterman C. Clark, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Saxton Frink, Lieutenant of the 2d Corny, in the 

5th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 24th 1818. 
This Assembly do appoint [i.e., establish] Chancey Bacon, Ensign of the 2d 

Corny, in the 5th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 

24th 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 349 

This Assembly do establish Hezekiah Baker Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 24th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Zebina Adams, Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Harry Wood, Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 5th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Simeon Stoddard, Capt. of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah W. Bristol Lieut, of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel Willard, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Butler, Lieutenant of the 4th Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Bulkley, Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathaniel Boardman, Captain of the 5th Corny, in 

the 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 1 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Williams, Lieutenant of the 5th Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 15th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish James Goodrich, Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 15th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George Covell, Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asahel Hollister, Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Sylvester Blish, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 6th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Bushnell 2d, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

7th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 31st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha Clark, Lieutenant of the 8th Corny, in the 

7th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 19th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas C. Smith, Ensign of the 8th Company in the 

7th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 19th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Roswell Allyn, Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 21st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Abel Allyn, Lieutenant of the 5th Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 21st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Israel Allyn, Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 21st 1818. 



350 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish William M. Smith, Capt. of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jona B. Waterbury, Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Lowden, Ensign of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Allen Hobby, Lieutenant of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Silas H. Mead, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Horace Waterbury, Lieutenant of the 1st Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Luther Knapp, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 9th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Frederick Lockwood, Captain of the 2d Corny, in 

the 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 4th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asahel P. Bailey, Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 9th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 4th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Ferris Junr. Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 4th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Benjamin Smith Junr. Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 

9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 7th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jacob Dayton, Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 9th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 7th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Smith, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 9th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 7th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Isaac Jones, Ensign of the 8th Company in the 9th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joel Rice, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in the 10th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jesse Gaylord, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 10th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Manning Tuttle, Lieut, of the 4th Corny, in the 10th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Eleazer Warner, Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 10th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Malachi S. Tyler, Lieut, of the 6th Company in the 

1 0th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 24th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Martin Barnes, Ensign of the 6th Company in the 

1 0th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 24th 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 351 

This Assembly do establish James Day, Lieut, of the 2d flank Company in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 21st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Day, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

1 1th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 21st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer Dewing, Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 

1 1 th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Laban Underwood, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

1 1 th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Piatt, Captain of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Titus Pearce Junr. Lieut, of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Sheldon Pearce, Ensign of 2d flank Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Root, Captain of the 1st Company in the 12th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Sherman, Lieut, of the 1st Company in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Lamson P. Mitchell, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 

1 2th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1 6th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Philo Clark, Captain of the 5th Company in the 12th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jedidiah Lemon, Lieut, of the 5th Company in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Gideon Hollister Junr. Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Ebenezer Evitts, Captain of the 6th Company in the 

12th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Averill, Lieut, of the 6th Company in the 12th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Erastus Reynolds, Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 12th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha B. Mallory, Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 

1 3th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Benjamin Catlin, Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 

1 3th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Norman Winchel, Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 4th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Albert Norton, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 4th 1818. 



352 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish Benjamin Slater, Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Francis Hart, Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Rollin Atkins, Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Sidney Porter, Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 14th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Francis Woodruff, Lieut, of the 7th Company in the 

14th Regiment of Militia in this State, to take rank from August 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Francis Woodford, Ensign of the 7th Corny. In the 

14th Regiment of Militia in the State; to take rank from August 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William H. Harrison, Ensign of the 6th Corny, in 

the 1 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Peter M. Bissell, Captain of the 7th Company in the 

1 6th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1 6th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Griswold Woodward, Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 

16th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Harry E. Coe, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 16th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Salmon Ensign, Captain of the 1st flank Corny, in 

the 1 7th Regiment of Militia in this State ; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Seth King Junr. Lieut, of the 1st flank Company in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Isaac Remington Jr. Ensign of the 1st flank Corny. 

in the 17th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 

1st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Hurlburt, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Orson P. Phelps, Captain of the 4th Corny, in the 

17th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asahel Bliss, Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 30th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jedidiah Wilcox Junr. Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 

1 7th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 30th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Oval Wilcox, Ensign of the 7th Company in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Moses Tibbits, Captain of the 8th Corny, in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 18th 1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 353 

This Assembly do establish Elizur Benjamin, Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Selden Moore, Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 17th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ephraim Pitcher, Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

1 8th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 7th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Yeomans, Ensign of the 1 st flank Corny, in 

the 18th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 7th 

1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alanson Fuller, Lieut, of the 6th Company in the 1 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha Warren, Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 1 8th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Timothy Killam, Ensign of the 1st flank Coy. in the 

19th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 17th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John King, Lieut, of the 1st flank Corny, in the 

1 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 2d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Horace Metcalf, Capt. of the 1st Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Harvey Terry, Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Allen, Ensign of the 1st Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathan Charter, Captain of the 2d Corny, in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jeremiah Baker, Lieut, of the 2d Company in the 

19th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1st 18 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Jonathan C. Brown, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 

19th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 1 st 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Eli Hyde, Captain of the 4th Company in the 19th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 10th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Johnson, Lieutenant of the 4th Corny, in the 

1 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 1 0th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Solva Converse, Ensign of the 4th Company in the 

1 9th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 1 0th 1 8 1 8 . 
This Assembly do establish Levi Collins, Capt. of the 2d flank Company in the 

20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Isaac Latham, Lieut, of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 27th 1818. 



354 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish Henry J. Phelps, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in 

the 20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from July 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Azariah Smith, Captain of the 1st Company in the 

20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 17th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jehiel Anable, Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 20th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 17th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Amasa Clarke, Ensign of the 1st Company in the 

20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 17th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Hurd, Lieutenant of the 3d Corny, in the 

20th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Asaph Hall, Ensign of the 3d Company in the 20th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ira Goodsell, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Augustus P. Pease, Captain of the 5th Corny, in the 

2 1st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Gaylord 2d Lieut, of the 5th Corny, in the 

2 1 st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish James Grant, Ensign of the 5th Corny, in the 21st 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Erastus Seymour, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

2 1 st Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 24th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Peck, Captain of the 2d Company in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish John Foster, Lieutenant of the 2d Company in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Reuben Moss, Ensign of the 2d Company in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Seymour, Lieutenant of the 3d Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish John Couch, Ensign of the 3d Company in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 3d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Newton, Ensign of the 5th Company in the 22d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 16th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Nathan R. Morris, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 

22d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 15th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Roderick Dimick, Ensign of the 2d Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George Loomis, Captain of the 3d Company in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 2d 1 8 1 8. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 355 

This Assembly do establish George Little, Lieut, of the 3d Company in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Manley, Ensign of the 3d Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 2d 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish John Albray, Ensign of the 5th Company in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 28th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alden Baker, Captain of the 6th Corny, in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Josiah Brown Junr. Lieut, of the 6th Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Eleazer Loomis 2d, Ensign of the 6th Corny, in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Reuben Chaffee, Lieut, of the 8th Company in the 

23d Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Abijah Brooks, Ensign of the 8th Corny, in the 23d 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Lockwood, Capt. of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Hoyt, Lieut, of the 2d flank Company in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Rufus St. John, Ensign of the 2d flank Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ira Betts, Captain of the 2d Company in the 24th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Belden, Lieutenant of the 2d Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Lewis St. John, Ensign of the 2d Company in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from June 12th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Selleck, Capt. of the 4th Corny, in the 24th 

Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alfred Seely, Lieutenant of the 4th Company in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Thomas, Ensign of the 4th Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from August 29th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Bradford Winton, Captain of the 7th Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Banks Junr. Lieut, of the 7th Corny, in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from September 25th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alfred Burr, Ensign of the 7th Company in the 

24th Regiment of Militia in this State; to take rank from Septr. 25th 1818. 



356 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish Walter Williams, 1st Lieut, of the 2d Troop in the 

2d Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Hinckley, 2d Lieut, of the 2d Troop in the 

2d Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Carver, Cornet of the 2d Troop in the 2d Reg- 
iment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 8th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Loring Bartlett, Captain of the 1st Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elias H. Josslyn, 1 st Lieutenant of the 1 st Troop in 

the 3d Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Burt, 2d Lieutenant of the 1st Troop in the 

3d Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jabez Jackway, Cornet of the 1st Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from June 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel Burnham, 2d Lieut, of the 3d Troop in the 

3d Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Norman Kellogg, Cornet of the 3d Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 27th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Abraham Morse, Cornet of the 4th Troop in the 3d 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from May 14th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Richard Wilcox, Captain of the 4th Troop in the 

4th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Wait Williams, 1st Lieut, of the 4th Troop in the 

4th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Loren Percival, 2d Lieut, of the 4th Troop in the 

4th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Wheeler, Captain of the 1st Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish John Pearce, 1st Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 5th 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Preston Downs, 2d Lieut, of the 1st Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Gideon Martin, Cornet of the 1st Troop in the 5th 

Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from August 18th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Tertius D. Potter, 1st Lieutenant of the 3d Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from October 21st 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Harrison, Cornet of the 3d Troop in the 

5th Regiment of Cavalry in this State; to take rank from October 2 1 st 1 8 1 8. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 357 

This Assembly do establish Willard Bradley, Cornet of the 1st Company in the 1st 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from October 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Charles Atwood, 2d Lieut, of the 1 st Company in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Sept. 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Oliver Warner Junr. 3d Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 5th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Clark Ransom, 4th Lieut, of the 1st Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from September 

5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joseph Otis, Cornet of the 1st Company in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 5th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Hazen, Captain of the 2d Company in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Jason W. Kingsley, 1st Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 9th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas C. Coit, 2d Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Archibald T. Robertson, 3d Lieut, of the 2d Corny. 

in the 2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 

9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Thomas, 4th Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 9th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Burnham, Cornet of the 2d Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 9th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Thomas, 3d Lieut, of the 2d Company in 

the 2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septem- 
ber 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Thomas Burnham, 4th Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Frederick W. Griffin, Cornet of the 2d Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 22d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stanton Hewit Junr. Captain of the 4th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elias W. Brown, 4th Lieut, of the 4th Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry W. Avery, Cornet of the 4th Corny, in the 2d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Elisha L. Silliman, 1st Lieut, of the 2d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 19th 1818. 



358 public records October, 

This Assembly do establish James Scott Junr. Cornet of the 2d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 1 9th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish William Sanford Junr. 1 st Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in 

the 3d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 26th 

1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel S. Gray, 2d Lieutenant of the 3d Corny, in the 

3d Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Hill Junr. 3d Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Daniel Burr, 4th Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Joel Gray, Cornet of the 3d Company in the 3d 

Regiment of Horse Artillery in this State; to take rank from June 26th 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Rodney Comstock, Captain of the 3d Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septr. 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George H. Chadwick, 2d Lieut, of the 3d Corny, in 

the 1st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from September 

23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Benjamin Ambler, Captain of the 4th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ira Gregory, 1st Lieutenant of the 4th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Zalmon Lyon, 2d Lieut, of the 4th Company in the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 20th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Stephen Chalker, Captain of the 8th Company in the 

1 st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Abraham Pratt, 1st Lieutenant of the 8th Corny, in the 

1 st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alfred Worthington, 2d Lieut, of the 8th Corny, in the 

1 st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Hezekiah Prentice, 1st Lieut, of the 10th Corny, in 

the 1st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from Septem- 
ber 23d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ira Sherman, Captain of the 12th Company in the 1st 

Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Henry Chatfield, 1 st Lieut, of the 1 2th Company in 

the 1st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 

1818. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 359 

This Assembly do establish Samuel Wooster, 2d Lieut, of the 1 2th Company in the 

1 st Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from May 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Cady, 1st Lieutenant of the 1st Corny, in 

the 2d Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 

15th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Foster, 2d Lieutenant of the 1st Corny, in 

the 2d Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 

15th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish William Dexter, 2d Lieutenant of the 12th Corny. 

in the 2d Regiment of Light Artillery in this State; to take rank from August 

20th 1818. 

This Assembly do establish Ephraim M. Williams, Capt. of the 7th Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from June 13th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish George Ayer, Lieutenant of the 7th Corny, in the 

1st Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from June 13th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish David Bellows, Ensign of the 7th Corny, in the 1st 

Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from September 1 7th 1 8 1 8. 
This Assembly do establish Samuel Buckingham, Capt. of the 3d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Alpheus Clark, Lieutenant of the 3d Corny, in the 

2d Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Enoch Burwell, Ensign of the 3d Company in the 

2d Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from July 2d 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Parsons Coe, Captain of the 10th Company in the 

2d Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from October 26th 1818. 
This Assembly do establish Ozias Camp 2d Lieut, of the 10th Company of the 

2d Regiment of Riflemen in this State; to take rank from October 26th 1818. 

An act constituting and regulating courts. 6 [Stat. Conn., II, 311] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that from and after the first day of June 



6. For the significance of this act, see above, p. il. The legislators first considered, and then 
rejected, a bill that would have reduced the number of assistant judges from eight to five rather than 
the four provided for here; the newspapers contain a brief account of the debates. Rejected Bills, 
1818-1821, Box 5, 1818, folder 4, doc. 60; House Proceedings of Oct. 21, 22, 28, 1818: Journal, 
Oct. 27, Nov. 3, 1818; Mercury, Nov. 3, 1818. The legislators apparently had a more extensive bill, 
introduced in May 1818, under consideration regarding the overall organization of the court system: 
Rejected Bills, 1818, Box 5, 1818, folder 4, docs. 62-64. 



360 public records October, 

next, the Superiour Court of this State, shall consist of one chief judge and four 
assistant judges, to be appointed for that purpose. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that from and after the first day of June next, the 
judges of the Superiour court, four of whom shall make a quorum, shall constitute 
the Supreme court of errors, and shall have and possess all the powers and authori- 
ties, now by law vested in the Supreme court of errors; and sessions of said 
Supreme court of errors, shall be held at the times and places now by law provided. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that the sessions of said Superiour court, shall 
be held within the several counties in this State, at the times and places, now by 
law provided, by any one of the judges of said court, who shall have and pos- 
sess all the powers and authorities with which the Superiour court of this State 
is by law vested. 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, that it shall be the duty of the judges of the Su- 
preme court of errors, from time to time, to allot to each of the judges, the county 
or counties in which they shall respectively hold a Superiour court as aforesaid. 

General Assembly, October Session, 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act relative to the election of Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, Sena- 
tors, Members of the House of Representatives, Treasurer and 
Secretary. 7 [Stat. Conn., II, 312-14] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that the constables of the several towns in 
this State, shall warn the electors of their respective towns to meet together on 
the first Monday of April, in each year, at the usual place of holding elections, 
or at such other place as may have been previously designated by an annual 
town meeting, in such towns respectively, at nine of the clock in the morning of 
said day; which warning shall be given at least five days previous to said meet- 
ings, by posting notice thereof on the sign-posts in such towns, and in such 
other places as they deem necessary. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that the town clerk and select men in the sev- 
eral towns, are hereby authorized, if they deem it expedient, to designate the 
person who shall preside at such meetings of the electors; but in case no 



7. For the significance of this act, see above, p. il-1. and the references there. For the bonds 
mentioned in section 7. see Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 656-57; for the provisions of the current law 
related to influence, bribery, corruption, and the preservation of order referenced in the final 
section, see ibid., pp. 246-48. 251. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 361 

presiding officer is designated by the town clerk and select men, the electors 
shall choose the presiding officer; in which choice, the town clerk, if present, 
and in his absence, the oldest select man present, shall preside. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that the electors present at any such meeting, 
shall first proceed to choose the representative or representatives to which such 
town is entitled in the General Assembly next ensuing said election. 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, that at such meetings of the electors, immedi- 
ately after the choice of representatives, the electors shall be called upon, by 
the presiding officer, to bring in their ballots for Senators in the General As- 
sembly of this State, next ensuing said election, and each elector present may, 
thereupon, deliver his vote or suffrage for a number of persons not exceeding 
twelve, whom he would choose Senators, with the names written on one piece 
of paper. After the votes for Senators are given in, the presiding officer shall 
call upon the electors to bring in their votes for the persons they would choose 
Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, Treasurer and Secretary of the State, for 
the year ensuing said election, in the order above named; the presiding officer, 
assisted by the town clerk and select men, shall count the votes, and declare 
them in the public meeting of the electors; and shall also make duplicate lists of 
the votes for Senators, Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, Treasurer and Sec- 
retary; one of each lists of votes shall be sealed up by the presiding officer, 
directed to the Secretary of this State, and returned to the Secretary, or to the 
sheriff of the county in which the town is situate, within ten days after such 
meeting, and the other within three days after such meeting shall be delivered 
to the town clerk; each sheriff receiving said votes, shall, within fifteen days 
after said meeting, return the same, or cause them to be returned to the Secre- 
tary of this State. The votes for Lieutenant-Governour shall be counted by the 
same persons appointed to count the votes for Governour; and a fair list of the 
votes for Lieutenant-Governour, Treasurer, and Secretary, shall be made by the 
persons authorized to receive and count the same, and laid before the General 
Assembly on the first day of their session, who shall declare the persons elected 
to said offices respectively. The votes for Senators, Lieutenant-Governour, Trea- 
surer, and Secretary shall be counted within the month of April, in each year; and 
the original returns of all votes, made by the presiding officer, shall be submitted 
to the General Assembly, on the first day of their session. 

Sec. 5. In the election of Lieutenant-Governour, Treasurer and Secretary, a 
majority of the votes given shall be necessary to constitute a choice; and if no 
person has a majority of votes given for either of said officers, the General As- 
sembly shall proceed to fill the vacancy. 






362 public records October, 

Sec. 6. In case the office of Treasurer, Secretary, or Controller, become 
vacant by death or resignation, the Governour shall fill the vacancy, unless the 
same occurs during the session of the General Assembly, in which case, they 
shall appoint a successor. 

Sec. 7. The bond required by law, to be given by the Treasurer, shall be ac- 
cepted and approved by the Senate of this State, before the Treasurer enters 
upon the duties of his office; except when the Governour appoints, in which 
case, the bonds shall be approved by the Governour. 

Sec. 8. Be it further enacted, that so much of the act entitled "An act for regu- 
lating the election of Governour, Lieutenant-Governour, Assistants," &c. and the 
acts in addition to and alteration of the same, as relate to undue influence, brib- 
ery and corruption, in elections, and which relate to the preservation of order, 
and preventing disturbance in freeman's meetings, and relative to persons voting 
in freeman's meeting, who are not qualified, and putting in more votes than one, 
for the same person, at the same election, be, and the same are hereby extended 
to the meetings of the electors and the proceedings under this act. 

General Assembly, October Session, 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act relating to the support of State paupers. 8 [Stat. Conn., II, 314] 

Be it enacted by the Govenwur and Council and House of Representatives 
in General Court assembled, that the Controller of public accounts be, and he 
hereby is authorized to adjust and liquidate, on equitable principles, all claims 
presented by the select men of the several towns in this State, for the support of 
State paupers within their respective towns; to demand such proof as shall be 
satisfactory to him, respecting the justice of such claim; provided, however, 
that no higher sum shall be allowed by the Controller, for the support of any 
State pauper, than the sum actually paid for his support by the town presenting 
the claim; and if, in the opinion of the Controller, an unnecessary expence hath 
been incurred by any town, for the support of any State pauper, he shall allow, 



8. For the background of this act, see above, pp. xxiv-xxvi. The Assembly had appointed a 
committee on state paupers at the October 1817 session, no doubt in response to Gov. Wolcott's 
opening speech; the legislators had considered, but did not adopt, a more elaborate bill on this 
subject during 1817. At the May 1818 session the Council rejected a shorter one that would have 
limited payments for support of state paupers to SI. 25 per week. Archives. Civil Officers. Ser. 2. 
XXIV, 184; House Journal, May 20. Oct. 10. 1817; Rejected Bills. 1815-1 8 17. Box 4, 1817, folder 
18, docs. 110-11. 



1818 OF CONNECTICUT 363 

on the claim presented, only such sum as he shall judge has been necessarily 
expended, and shall be justly due. 

General Assembly, October Session, 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act prescribing forms for the return of votes. 9 [Stat Conn., II, 315-17] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Represen- 
tatives in General Court assembled, that the presiding officers in the meetings 
of the electors in the respective towns of this State, shall make out the certifi- 
cates of the votes and proceedings of the electors, according to the forms 
hereafter prescribed; that is to say, of the votes for Senators in the General As- 
sembly, as follows, viz. 

At a meeting of the electors in the town of legally 

warned and held, on the first Monday of April, A.D. the following per- 
sons received the number of votes annexed to their names respectively, for 
Senators in the next General Assembly of this State, viz. 

Names. Number of votes, in words at full length 



Duplicate list of votes for Senators. 

Certified by A.B. presiding officer. 
Of the votes for Governour, as follows, viz. 

At a meeting of the electors in the town of legally 

warned and held, on the first Monday of April, A.D. the following per- 
sons received the number of votes annexed to their names respectively, for 
Governour of this State. 

Names. Number of votes, in words at full length. 



Duplicate list of votes for Governour. 

Certified by A.B. presiding officer. 
Of the votes for Lieutenant-Governour, as follows, viz. 

At a meeting of the electors in the town of legally 

warned and held, on the first Monday of April, A.D. the following 



9. The forms prescribed here are similar to those established, at least in part, in an act of 
October 1803: Stat. Conn., 1808, pp. 253-55; a revision was necessitated by the changes in the 
1818 Constitution, particularly the new office of state senator. The Council added section 4 to the 
act and the House concurred: Archives, Civil Officers, Ser. 2, XIX, 20. 



364 public records October, 

persons received the number of votes annexed to their names respectively, for 
Lieutenant-Governour of this State. 

Names. Number of votes, in words at full length. 



Duplicate list of votes for Lieutenant-Governour. 

Certified by A.B. presiding officer. 
Of the votes for Treasurer, as follows, viz. 

At a meeting of the electors in the town of legally 

warned and held, on the first Monday of April, A.D. the following per- 
sons received the number of votes annexed to their names respectively, for 
Treasurer of this State. 

Names. Number of votes, in words at full length. 



Duplicate list of votes for Treasurer. 

Certified by A.B. presiding officer. 
Of the votes for Secretary, as follows, viz. 

At a meeting of the electors in the town of legally 

warned and held, on the first Monday of April, A.D. the following per- 
sons received the number of votes annexed to their names respectively, for 
Secretary of this State. 

Names. Number of votes in words at full length. 



Duplicate list of votes for Secretary. 

Certified by A.B. presiding officer. 
Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that the presiding officers, in making out said 
certified lists, shall insert the number of votes for each person voted for, in 
words at full length. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that the superscription on each of said certified 
lists, to be returned to the Secretary of this State, shall be as follows, viz. 
To the Secretary of this State. 

Votes of the electors in the town of for (here insert 

the office), taken and sealed up by 

A. B. presiding officer. 






1818 OF CONNECTICUT 365 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, that the Secretary of this State, for the [time] 
being, shall annually transmit blank forms for the return of votes, to the town 
clerks of the various towns in this State, for the use of said towns. 

General Assembly, October Session, 1818. 

Gideon Tomlinson, Speaker of the House of Representatives. 
Attest. Thomas Day, Secretary. Oliver Wolcott, Governour. 

An act relative to the admission of electors. 10 [Stat. Conn., II, 317-18] 

Sec. 1 . Be it enacted by the Governour and Council and House of Representa- 
tives in General Court assembled, that the town clerk, and select men of each town 
in this State, are hereby authorized, if they deem it expedient and necessary, to 
meet at the place of choosing representatives and State officers in the General As- 
sembly, on the Thursday next preceding the first Monday of April in each year, at 
nine o'clock in the morning of said day, for the purpose of examining and deciding 
upon all applications to be admitted to the privileges of electors. 

Sec. 2. Be it further enacted, that in all such cases it shall be the duty of the 
town clerk and select men, to cause notice of such meetings to be given to the 
inhabitants of the town where such meetings are held, by posting such notice 
on the public sign-posts in said town, or by publishing the same in some public 
newspaper printed in such town; which notice shall be given at least five days 
previous to such meeting. 

Sec. 3. Be it further enacted, that the town clerk and select men of the sev- 
eral towns in this State, shall meet together on the first Monday of April, in 
each year, at nine of the clock in the morning of said day, at the place of holding 
the elections, for the purpose of receiving, examining, and deciding on all ap- 
plications to be admitted to the privilege of electors; and it shall be the duty of 
the select men and town clerk, to make certified lists in writing, of all such per- 
sons as are judged duly qualified, at either of said meetings, which list shall be 
delivered to the town clerk, and recorded in the records of the town, and shall 
be sufficient evidence that the persons contained in said list, respectively, pos- 
sess the requisite qualifications for electors of this State. 

Sec. 4. Be it further enacted, that every person found qualified as aforesaid, 
upon taking the oath provided for electors, shall be admitted an elector of this 
State; and the names of all such electors admitted and sworn as aforesaid, shall 
be enrolled by the town clerk, on the records of such town. 



10. For the significance of this act, see above, pp. xli, il-1, and the references there. 






366 public records October, 

Sec. 5. Be it further enacted, that the oath provided for electors, may be ad- 
ministered at e