페이지 이미지
PDF

LAWS OF VIRGINIA. 231

1660. c. 22, 1660-1, c. 10, 1661-2, c. 15, 98, 101, 102, 103, 104, 105.—Various provisions for punishment of runaway servants, mostly by extending their period of service; for prevention of cruelty of masters, &c.: c. 15, entitled, Burial of servants or others privately, prohibited : c. 54, What persons are tithable.—2 Hen. 118.

1661-2, c . 138—Concerning Indians—(margin) "This act appears to be a digest of the former laws relating to the Indians which are very numerous."—Enacts " that what Englishman trader or other shall bring in any Indians as servants, and shall assigne them over to any other, shall not sell them for slaves, nor for any longer time than English of the like ages should serve by act of assembly."—2 Hen. 143. Injuries done them to be remedied by the laws of England, as if they had been done to an Englishman. See abstract in 1 Hildr. 515.

1661-2.—Reciting that a "Powhatan Indian sold for life time to one E. S., by the King of Wainoke Indians, who had no power to sell him, being of another nation, it is ordered that the said Indian be free, he speaking perfectly the English tongue and desiring baptism."—2 Hen. 155.

1661. March.—" The Committees report that the great loss and damage sustained by Mr. William Dromond through the injustice done by the court of Boston in New-England ought to be repaired, and since the said court have returned no satisfactory answer to the letter of the honorable governor and council of Virginia, wee are necessitated to find the least of ill expedients to repair the said Mr. Dromond; it is therefore ordered by this present grand assembly, there be seized to the value of fforty pounds sterling money, out of the estate of some persons relateing to the said government of Boston, which is in consideration of wages due for such a servant's time, as was illegally cleared from the said Dromond's employ in New-England, and doe accordingly order the same." 2 Hen. 158.

1662. c. 12.—" Whereas some doubts have arisen whether children got by any Englishman upon a negro woman should be slave or free. Be it, &c., that all children borne in this country shall be held bond or free, only according to the condi

232 LAWS OF VIBGINIA.

tion of the mother:" By c. 13, women servants, whose common employment is working in the ground, are made tithable.

1563,' c 8.—That runaways be pursued at the public expense, "and in case the said fugitives shall, notwithstanding such pursuit, make an escape to any of the Dutch plantations, it is enacted that letters be written to the respective governors of those plantations to make seizure of all such fugitive servants, &c."—2 Hen. 187.

1666. c. 9, 10.—Respecting servants' time, and^runaways.— 2 Hen. 239. *

1667. c 3.—" That the conferring of baptisme doth not alter the condition of the person as to his bondage or ffreedom, that divers masters, ffreed from this doubt, may more carefully endeavour the propagation of Christianity, &c."—2 Hen. 260.

1669. c. 1. An act about the casuall killing of slaves.— "Whereas the only law in force for the punishment of refractory servants resisting their master, mistress, or overseer, cannot be inflicted upon negroes [slaves are here meant, because the law referred to—1661-2. c. 104—punishes such servants by extending their time]," nor the obstinacy of many of them by other than violent means be suppressed. Be it, Sec, if any slave resist his master (or other by his master's order correcting him) and by the extremity of coercion should chance to die, that his death shall not be accounted felony, but the master (or that other person, &c.) be acquitted from molestation, since it cannot be presumed that prepensed malice (which alone makes murder felony) should induce any man to destroy his own estate. 2 Hen. 270.—Re-enacted 1705, c. 49. 1723. c. 4. 1748, c. 31. Repealed 1788, c. 23. v. 2, Tucker's Bla. app. 46.

1670. c. 3. Election of Burgesses by whome. "Whereas the usual way of chuseing burgesses by the votes of all persons who haveing served their time are ffremen of this country, &c. &c, and whereas the lawes of England grant a voyce in such election, only souch as by their estates real or personall have inter

1 In this year an insurrection was plotted by a number of servants. See 2 Banc 192.

LAWS OF VIRGINIA. 233

est enough to bye them to the endeavour of the publique good,"—enacts that "none but ffreeholders and housekeepers" shall have votes. [Comp. law 1723, c. 4.]

c. 5. "Whereas it has been questioned whether Indians

or negroes, manumitted or othewise free, could be capable of purchasing Christian servants, it is enacted that no negro or Indian, though baptized and enjoying their own freedom, shall be capable of any such purchase of Christians, but yet not debarred from buying any of their own nation:" c. 12, "whereas some disputes have arisen whether Indians taken in war by any other nation, and by that nation that taketh them sold to the English, are servants for life or term of years, it is resolved and enacted that all servants not being Christians, imported into this colony by shipping,1 shall be slaves for their lives; but what shall come by land shall serve, if boys or girls until thirty years of age, if men or women, twelve years and no longer." 2 Hen. 280, 283. 1670, ap. 20—extract from the records of the general court, 2 Hen. 509, Hist. Doc. margin—"Convicts (called 'jail birds') from the prisons in England, not permitted to be landed in Virginia."

1671. c. 7. "That any strangers desiring to make this country the place of their constant residence, may upon their petition to, &c., and taking the oaths &c. to his majesty, be permitted to a naturalization, &c. * ° Provided that the benefit of such naturalization be confined and esteemed to extend only to the government of Virginia, beyond which this grand assembly pretend to noe authority of warranting its sufficiencie, &c." 2 Hen. 289.

1676. c. 1. (Of Laws under Bacon's usurpation.) An act for carrying on ivarre against the barbarous Indians—"That all Indians taken in warre be held and accounted slaves dureing life." 2 Hen. 346.

1 Shipping seems to refer to negroes; but it is supposed that about this time Indians were imported into New England and Virginia, as slaves, from the West Indies and the Spanish Main. 1 Hildroth Hist. 522.

Hist. Documents, 1670, 2 Hen. 515.—Enquiries to the Governor of Virginia, submitted by the Lords Commissioners, &c. By answers to questions 15 and 16, it appears that of 40,000 persons, thoro wore 2,000 "black slaves, 600 Christian servants, and that the yearly immigration of servants was about 1,500, of which most are English, few Scotch, and fewer Irish, and not above two or three ships of negroes in seven years."

234 LAW8 OF VIRGINIA.

1676—7. 'Order that Indian captives taken by soldiers in war should be the property of such captors. 2 Hen. 404—and note and 1679, c. 1; to the same effect 2 Hen. 432, 440.

1680. c. 2. An act for naturalization by Governor, &c. c. 7, An act ascertaining the time when negroe children shall be tythable. c. 8, An act lycensing a free trade with the friendly Indians, c. 10, An act for preventing negroes insurrections. "Whereas the frequent meeting of considerable numbers of negroe slaves under pretence of feasts and burialls is judged of dangerous consequence,"—enacts that no negro or other slave shall carry arms or go from plantation without certificate, and if such " shall presume to lift up his hand in opposition against any Christian," shall be punished with thirty lashes. (See L 1748, c. 38, § 20.) "That if any negro or other slave shall absent himself from his master's service and lye hid and lurking in obscure places, committing injuries to the inhabitants, and shall resist any person or persons that shall by lawful authority be employed to apprehend and take the said negroe, that then, in case of such resistance, it shall be lawful for such person or persons to kill the said negroe or slave soe lying out and resisting, &c. 2 Hen.464,480,481, (continued,l705, c .49, sec. 37.)

1682, c. 1.—An act to repeale a former law making Indians and others ffree.—2 Hen. 490. Preamble, after reciting act of 1670, c. 12, "and for as much as many negroes, moores, mollatoes, and others, borne of and in heathenish, idollatrous, pagan, and Mahometan parentage and country, have heretofore and hereafter may be purchased, procured, or otherwise obteigned, as slaves, of, from, or out of such their heathenish country, by some well-disposed Christian, who, after such their obteining and purchasing such negroe, moor, or molatto as their slave, out of a pious zeale have wrought the conversion of such slave to the Christian faith, which by the laws of this country doth not manumit them or make them free, and afterwards such their conversion, it hath and may often happen that such

1 The third charter, so called, of Virginia is dated October 10, 1676. The most important clause in connection with the subject is—"declare and grant that all the subjects of us, our heirs and successors from time to time inhabiting within our colony and plantation of Virginia, shall have their immediate dependence upon the Crown of E ngland, under the rule, &c 2 Hen. 532.

LAWS OF VIRGINIA. 235

master or owner of such slave being by some reason inforced to bring or send such slave into this country to sell or dispose of for his necessity or advantage, he, the said master or owner of such servant, which, notwithstanding his conversion, is really his slave, or his factor or agent must be constrained either to carry back or export againe the said slave to some other place where they may sell him for a slave or else depart from their just right and tytle to such slave, and sell him here for noe longer time than the English or other Christians are to serve, to the great losse and damage of such master or owner, and to the great discouragement of bringing in such slaves for the future, and to noe advantage at all to the planter or buyer; and whereas alsoe those Indians that are taken in warre or otherwise by our neighbouring Indians, confederates or tributaries to his majestie and this his plantation of Virginia, are slaves to the said neighbouring Indians that soe take them, and by them are likewise sold to his majesties subjects here, as slaves. Bee it therefore enacted by the governour, councell, and burgesses of this general assembly, and it is enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all the said recited act of the third of October, 1670, be and is hereby repealed and made utterly voyd to all intents and purposes whatsoever. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that all servants except Turkes and Moores, whilst in amity with his majesty, which from and after publication of this act shall be brought or imported into this country either by sea or land, whether negroes, Moors, mollatoes or Indians, who and whose parentage and native country are not Christian at the time of their first purchase of such servant by some Christian, though afterwards and before such their importation and bringing into this country, they shall be converted to the Christian faith; and all Indians which shall hereafter be sold by our neighbouring Indians, or any other trafiqueing with us, as for slaves, are hereby adjudged, deemed, and taken, and shall be adjudged, deemed, and taken to be slaves, to all intents and purposes, any law, usage, or custome to the contrary notwithstanding." This provision, re-enacted in nearly the same terms in the revisions of 1705. c. 49, § 4. 1753, c. 2.

« 이전계속 »