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poll, and proceeding to take the votes of electors for the period of about half an hour, and until forty.electors had pulled, there being during the whole of that time no third candidate.
2. “That it appears to this committee, that after the first day of the said election, the freedom of the election was grossly violated by disturbances and riots, accompanied with personal intimidation and violence, practised and continued during the six subsequent days of polling.
3. “ That it appears to this committee that D.P. Coke, Esq. after sustaiðing several insults and suffering personal violence, was obliged, from the jast apprehension of hazard to his life, to leave the place, and could not renbure to return; and that a large body of electors were deterred from exercising their franchise of voting.
4. “ That it appears to this committee, that John Davison, the mayor; and Joseph Oldknow and Thomas Oldknow, two of the aldermen of the said town and county of the town of Nottingban, took no effectual means. to preserve the freedom of election, or restore it when so violated, or to punish the offenders.
5 “ That it appears to this committee, by an entry in the corpo ration book of the town and county of the town of Nottingham, that at a common ball, held on Thursday the 8th day of January, last past, (after reciting the petitions referred to this committee, it was resolved, that this corporation will defray all such legal expences as have already been or shall hereafter be incurred by them ibe said John Davison, Joseph Olaknow, Thomas Oldknow, and John Allen, or cither of them, .or Gcorge Coldham, under their direction, in preparing for or making their defences, and that the chamberlains for the time being be hereby authorized and directed from time to time to advance Nr:, Coldhain all and every such sum and suins of money as may be necessary tor this purpose.
6. “ It appearing that the mayor and aldermen have, by charter, an exclusive jurisdiction within the town and county of the town of Nottingham, and the committee thinking it highly expedient to provide some better security than is likely to be provided by the corporation of Nottingham, to preserve the peace within the town and county thereof, and to prevent the repetition of the same disgraceful scenes :
“ That it is the opinion of this cominittee, that the house be moved for leave to bring in a bill to give the magistrates of the county of Nottingbani, concurrent jurisdiction with the stagistrates of the town and county of the town of Nottingham.
" That it is the opinion of this committee, that unless such or some other measure to the like effect be taken previously to the next election for the town and county of Nottingham, there is no reasonable hope that a free clection can be had.
7." That the evidence adduced before this committee be laid before the house for its consideration:
&." That it appears to this committee, that alderman Foxcroft was employed to procure signatures to one of the petitions referred tothis committee, namely, that signed by 537 petitioners, and containing the following allegations : • That at tbe said eléction they had determined to poll for the said D. P, Coke, but that such was the violence of the mob; systematically regulated and conducted for the purpose, that they were completely intimidated, and thereby prevented froin polling for the said D. P. Cuke: that the said Johu Davison the mayor, John Alder the sherift, Thomas Oldkuow and Joseph Oldknow, two of the aldermen of the said tow, and who by virtue of their offices were magistrates, frequently attended on the hustings, and were repeatedly applied to to preserve the peace of the place and the freedom of election; but ebe said magistrates took no effectual steps to prevent any of the violent or illegal acts which took place at the said. election:
9. “That it appears to this committee, that the said alderman Foxcroft stated to those who sigued that petition, that it was a peti. tion for those wtee would have voted for Mr. Coke; but be admitted that the major part of them were not acquainted wąth the allegations against the magistrates and sheriff; and that about sixteen of those who signed the petition wece, to his knowledge, not at Nottingham at the time of the clection.
" To report, &c.
" A criminal information was moved for in the court of King's Bench, in Easter term, 43 Geo. III. against the magistrates, and members of the corporation, upon this ground; that certain petilions having been presented to parliament, complaining of the miscon: duct of some of the defendants, the defendants bad, in their official capacity, and out of the funds of the corporation, defrayed the exa pence of the defence. Upou cause being shewa, the court discharged the rule; being of opinion that no criminal purpose was shewn; and that, considering how deeply interested the corporation might eventually be in the decision of the committee, their conduct was justifiable
“ It was made a general rule in all the committces, that no wit ness should be examined who had been in the room during any part of the trial, the agents of the parties only accepted. An application was made in this case to make another exception in favour of the returning officers, whose presence was alleged to be neces. sary to protect themselves against the charges maile against thein in abe several petitions, They had been served with warrants on the part of the siting member. The committer, after deliberation, determined that there was no reason to make the exception.
“ The following are the principal authorities cited, respecting riots at elections. It would hare been difficult to introduce thenin the body of the case, without adding also a detail of the evidence to Jating to this part of it.
“ Stat. 3 Edw. 1. c. 5. • Because elections ought to be free, ihe king commandeth, upon great forfeiture, that no man by force of arms, nor by malice, or menaciny, shall disturb any to inako trio election.' 2 Inst. 168. As Stul. 13 Ilen. 4. c.7. requires sheriffs and justices of the piace
to repress riots with the power of the county ; to record them when committed in their presence ; and inflicts a penalty upoath em of 101, in case of neglect.. See also Stat. 17 Ric: 2. c. 8.
“ Stat, 2 Hen. 5. c) 8. for the better execution of the stat. Hen. 4. directs a commission to issue under the great seal, to inquire of the riots, and of the default of the magistrates who should repress ihem; extending the same regulations to boroughs and cities.
!: Elections avoided for riots, Glanv. 143. Pontefract, 1624. I Journ. 797. Southwark, 1709. 14 Joum; 25. Coventry, 1706. 15 Journ. 278. 1722. 20 Journ. 60. Westminster, 1722, 20. Jourp. 51, Coventry, 1786. 22 Journ. 819. Westminster, 1741. 24 Journ. 37, Pontefract, 1768.32 Journ. 68; and the returning officer censured,
“ Concerning the presence of the military during elections. Resolutions of the House of Cominons.: 17th of Nov. 1645, 4.That al elections of any knight, citizen, or burgess, to serve in parliament, be made without interruption or molestation by any commander governor, officer, or soldier,' &c; 4 Journ. 346.
“ 22 of Dec. 1741%! That the presence of a regular body of armed soldiers, at an election of members to serve ja parliament, is an high infringement of the liberties of.the subjoct, a manifest violation of the freedom of clections, and an open defiance of the laws and constitution of tbis kingdom,' 24. Journ. 37
"Stat: 8 Geo. II. c. 30+, reciting ibe stat. 3.Edw, l. enacts, that in case of an election, the secretary at war shall issue orders for the removal of soldiers to the distance of twa miles at least from the place
election, and forbidding them to make a nearer approach uill one day at least after the end of the poll. This act, has in some instances received a temporary and local suspension. See stat, 20 Geo. III. c. diand 50. 21 Geo. III. a 43.22 Geo. IJI..C. 29.
•The stat. 8 Gea. 2. 630, was prepared by the judges, in obedience to the die rection of the House of Lords, April 220, 1733. The Lords had addressed the king; and, in compliance with that address, the several allutinents of quarters made for the land-forces had been laid before them. The bill was a measure of precaution. taken in consequence of the increase of tlie standing army about that period. There is a very good account of the debatę which took place upon the subject, w the Gentleman's Magazine of that yeaç p. 751. It seems there to be ayreed on all hands, that nothing but a necessity, 80 strong as tą supersede all law, could justify a returning officer in demanding the assistante oi the militury, or a commander in affording it
Concerning the last Loan Act, the Property Tax, and
Decises of Stock. THAT there are occasionally, many, and perhaps altoge
ther pardonable inaccuracies and opissjons in nur modern statutes,.must have been often observed by you, iv com, mon with every person at all acquainted with their contentsa Aremarkable and important one occurs in the last loan act,44 Geo. II. o. 47, ppsfes and 4874* In-One of the clauses of this act, the funds created thereby are made liable to the payment of the income duty, after a certaio period; and in the other they are expressly exempted from all taxes, charges, and impositions)' whatsoever. What will be the construction which a court of law will put opon two distillet clauses sợ contradictory I will not anticipate, but as it is probable that few are possessed of this act, and load acte me pot printed at length in the quarte or octavo editions of the statules, I shall here insert both clauses, only observing that the clause of total exemption is the latter of the two, and that the error has obviously arisen fron the framer of the act inserting, by mistake, the ordinary clause of exemption contained in former loan acts, without adverting to the previous clause imposing the duty.
“ Provided always, and be it further enacted, that the duty granted by an act of the last session of parliament, intituled, • da act for granting to his Majesty, until tbe sixth day of May next after the ratification of a definitive treaty of peace, a contribution on the profits arising from property, professions, trades, and offices,' stall not be charged upon the half-year's dividend arising on the 5th day of July, 1804, of so much of the 3!. per centum consolidated aapuities, granted by this act, as shall not have been written into the books of the bank of England on or before the 18th day of May, 1804, being the day appointed by the governor and company of the baok of England for closing the accounts of the said 3li per centum consolidated annuities, previous ta the payment of the half-yearly dividend thereupon that will become due on the 5th day of July, 1804, nor upon the hall-year's dividend payable on the ioth day of October, 1804, of so much of the 31. per centum reduced annúitics, created by this act, as shall not have been written into the books of the bank of England on or before such day as shall be appointed by the governor and company of the bank of England for closing the accounts of the said 31. per centum reduced annuities, previous ta the payment of the half-yearly dividend thereupon, that will becoma due pnótble 10th day of October, 1804,” $ 8.
" And He it further enacted, tbat such contributors, duly paying she whole-sum se subscribed at or before the respective limes, in this act limited in that behalf, and their sospective executors, aditi nistrators, successorse and easigns, shall have, receive and cujgys and be entitled by virtue of this act to bave, receive, and enjoy the said several annuities by this act granted in respect of the sum xo subscribed, out of the monies granted and appropriated in this ser siop of parliament for payment thereof, and shall have good and sure interests and estates therein, according to the several provisions in this act contained, and that the said several 'annvities shall be free from all taxes, charges, and impositions whatsoever.
Folio or black litter edition,
The same act contains a clause relative to the transfer of stock by will, which, though common to all, acts of parliameat, creating new stock in the bank of England, is, bave great reason to think, but little known to the profession, owe ing to the circumstance before mentioned, that such acts are not printed in Runnington's or Pickering's editions. I allude to the 21st clause, which is as follows:
" And be it further enacted, that books shall be constantly kept by the said accouncant general for the time being, wherein all assign ments or transfers of all sums advanced or contributed towards the said, sum of fourteen millions five hundred thousand pounds, shall be entered and registered; which entry shall be conceived in proper words for that purpose, and shall be signed by the parties making such assignments or transfers, or if such parties be absent, by their respective attorney or attornies thereunto lawfully authorized, in writing under his or their hand and seal, or hands and seals, to be attested by two or more credible witnesses ; and that the several persons to whom súch transfers shall be made, shall respectively onderwrite their acceptince thereof, and that no other method of assigning and transferring the said annuities, or any part thereof, or any interest therein, shall be good or moailable in law; provided al. ways, ihat all persons possessed of any share or interest in either of the said stocks of anmunities, or any estate or interest therein, may decise the same by will, in writing, attested by two or more credible wits nesses ; but that no payment shall be made upon any such devise, until so much of the said will as relates to such share, estate, or interest, in the said stocks of annuities; be entered ja the sail office; and that in default of suck trausfer on decise, suck share, estate, or ina serest in the said stocks of annuities, shall go to the executors, admi. sistrators, successors, and assigns; and that no stamp duties whatsoever shał be charged on any of the said transfers; any law or statute to the contrary notwithstanding." $ 21.
By this clause it appears that, in order to transfer stock to a devisee, two witnesses to the will are indispensably necessary, or the stock will go, not to the devisee, but to the exeeutor. In cases of specific legacies of a certain and marked quantity of stock, this may give rise to a question of importance, though I leave it to others to say whether a court of law or equity would not, in all cases, consider the executor as a trustee for the devisee, when such a will is attested by one witness only. But, as it is better to avoid giving rise to questions of law, when it can be easily done, than to moot such questions before they do arise in practice, I trust, that through the circulation of your work, the practice of regularly attesting; by two witnesses, wills of personal property, in which there are devises of stock in the government Tunds, will become as general as the due execution of wills, concernipg real property, by three witnesses.