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fourteen men, the county of Monongalia south of Ma. son's and Dixon's line being extended to the Ohio thirty men, the coóuty of Montgomery thirty eight men, the county of Nausemond forty six men, the county of New Kent twenty five men, the county of Norfolk fifty six men, the county of Northampton thirty one men, the county of Northumberland forty three men, the county of Orange thirty seven men, the county of Pittsylvania forty five men, the county of Pow. hatan twenty two men, the county of Prince Edward thirty four men, the county of Prince George twenty six men, the county of Princess Anne thirty seven men, the county of Prince William forty eight men, the county of Richmond thirty two men, the county of Rockbridge thirty eight men, the county of Rockingham forty nine men, the county of Shenandoah fifty seven men, the county of Southampton fifty two men, the county of Spotsylvania forty two men, the county of Stafford forty five men, the county of Surry twenty four men, the county of Sussex forty two men, the county of Warwick seven men, the county of Westmoreland thirty men, the county of Washington forty three men, the county of York fourteen men, and the city of Williamsburg nine men. And in order to raise an adequate bounty for the purpose of enlisting the said men upon the most just and equal terms; Be it farther enacted, That all persons within this commonwealth, shall be compelled and are hereby required to pay two per centum on all property taxed in specie, under the act intituled “ An act for calling in and redeeming the mom ney now in circulation and for emitting and funding new bills of credit according to the resolutions of congress of the eighteenth of March last,” which said two per centum shall be paid either in specie, in the new bills of credit emitted under the resolutions of congress of the eighteenth of March last, in any other paper money current in this state at the rate of forty for one, in crop tobacco inspected since the first day of April last at the rate of seventy pounds of the last mentioned currency per hundred, or in good merchantable hemp at the rate of three hundred pounds of the like currency per hundred; provided that shch hemp be previously delivered to a commissary appointed by virtue of an act intituled' “ An act for laying a tax payable in certain enumerated commodities,” who shall give a
certificate for the same, expressing the weight thereof and the name of the proprietor; and the commissioners of the tax are hereby empowered to dispose of such hemp for the best price that can be obtained, so that it be not less than the rate aforesaid; and they shall transmit to the governour within twenty days after the day of draft, all such certificates and tobacco notes which remain undisposed of, and in no other alternative or certificates whatsoever.
And that the said tax or bounty may be collected in Taxes, when the most expeditious manner, It is farther enacted, and bow col. That the commissioners of the tax in each county shall be furnished by the executive with a copy of this act as soon as may be, and shall immediately upon the receipt thereof, give directions either to an assessor or to some other person within each hundred to collect the same, which collector shall proceed immediately so to do, and if any person liable to the said tax shall not within fifteen days after having received notice of the amount of his tax discharge the same, the said collector shall have power to distrain for it in the like manner as is done for the other taxes; the said collector shall within forty days after his appointment, account for and pay to the said commissioners, or such of them as are not county lieutenants or commanding officers of the militia, all monies, tobacco notes, and certificates for hemp, to be by him received under this act, deducting thereout three per cent. on the amount of his collection, which shall be allowed him for his trouble. So much of the money thus received by the said commissioners as will be sufficient to discharge in their county the bounties hereafter expressed, shall be by them paid to the several recruits on the day of draft, and the balance transmitted to the treasurer of this commonwealth within twenty days after such draft; and if the tax to be raised in any county shall be insufficient to discharge the bounties due to the recruits raised in the county, the commissioners shall on the said day of draft, distribute the money as far as it will go along the several recruits and drafts, in proportion to the bounties hereby allowed to each, and they shall moreover state to the treasurer an account of the men raised in their county, distinguishing between those who enlist voluntarily for the war or for three years, and those who are drafted, and draw on him for Vol. X.
money at the
the balance due to the several divisions, which money shall be paid to the first man named on each division, so as to make up the full bounty hereafter allowed. The said commissioners shall take bond of each collector in double the amount of the money to be by him collected, for the faithful discharge of his duty, and if he should fail to account for and
the day appointed, the commissioners are hereby empowered and required to distrain on him for the amount of the same, in like manner as he may distrain on others. If the commissioners should fail to pay the money after they have received it, the commanding officer of the militia shall, on previous notice being given, obtain a judgment against them on motion for the amount of the said tax, either in the court of their county or in the general court, and they shall moreover for this or any other neglect of duty, be subject to the penalty of fifty thousand pounds of tobacco each. If any collector shall refuse to act when appointed, or shall in any other manner neglect his duty as herein defined, he shall forfeit and pay fifteen thousand pounds of to
bacco. Mode of re
And be it farther enacted, That the county lieutencruiting men ant or commanding officer of each county or corporafor three
tion within this commonwealth, except as is before exyears or the
cepted, shall immediately after the receipt of this act, summon the field officers of his county or corporation, the four senior magistrates, not being field officers, and the commissioners of the tax, to meet at such place as he shall appoint, within ten days after due notice to them given; which said field officers, magistrates, or a majority of those attending, having first taken an oath, to be administered by the senior magistrate then present to the otber members, and by some one of the others to him, to do equal and impartial justice to the best of their judgment therein, sha!), with the assistance of the captains or commanding officers of the several militia companies, who shall also be summoned to attend with their rolls, distinguishing carefully thereon, invalids, those persons who may be under eighteen years
age, those who may have come within the district of his company to reside, and also those who may have removed or died since the delivery of his last list to the lieutenant of the county; all which informations shall be given on oath, proceed to lay off and divide
soldier shall alienate or assign his title to the said land or slave, until his time of service shall expire. The
called upon to execute the various laws, upon this subject, naturally looked to the Chancellors' Revisal, as containing all the laws, in relation to land-bounties. But unfortunately, in that col. lection, which was a mere compilation, (See note to vol. 9. p. 176) a great number of acts were omitted, the titles only being pub. lished. Such was the case with the act before us. It is remark. able that, at this same session, the proportion of land bounty to officers was encreased one third, in addition to any former bountv, (see post chap 27, sec. 4;) and it is but reasonable to suppose that the legislature intended the same liberality to the soldiers. But the title of this act, only, having been printed in the Chancellors' Revisal, and the act at large, granting an encrease of boun. ty to the officers, being published in that collection, the officers received their full quantity, while the soldiers have never re. ceive any land under this law.
Upon the whole, nothing seems clearer tban that, all our solo diers who were in service at the passage of this act, who had already enlisted, or who might thereafter enlist by the first doy of April 1781, to serve during the war, and who continued to serve faithfully to the end of the war, are entitled to 300 acres of land, in lieu of all such bounties given by any former laws. The former bounty, we have already seen was 200 acres.
It may be asked, why was not this law practised upon after the revolution? And why has it been permitted to remain so long a dead letter upon our statute book?" If the want of its publica. tion in the Chancellors' Revisal already noticed should not be deemed sufficient, other reasons may be offered. The act itself, is a very long one, occupying nearly five quarto pages, in the ori. ginal, not separated by sections, and wanting marginal notes; nor is there any thing in the title which would lead to the conclusion that it contained any such provisions, as those found to cxist in it. The Chancellors, in their compilation, no doubt, glancing at the title, and perceiving it to be “ An aci for recruiting this state's quota of troops to serve in the continental army;" had no difficulty in writing in the margin “ Had its effect and direct. ing the title only to be published. The editor of this work candidly acknowledges that, although for upwards of thirty years he has made the laws of Virginia an object of his peculiar research; although for several years of that period he was a meni. ber of the executive council, and often called on, in his official capacity, to pass on claims for land bounty, and sincerely thought he had examined and noted every law in relation to that subject; yet that he never did read more than the title of this act, until the present day (August 1822) when he was compelled to read the whole act, in order to annotate it for the press. But is it more extraordinary that this sct should pass unnoticed, which was never published in the Chancellors'Revisal, than that the act of May 1782, chap. 47, sec 9, which gave an additional boun. dy for every year's service over six, and which found a place in that collection, should not have been acted upon until many years had elapsed, and many hundreds of warrants had been is. sued, without that addition to officers and soldiers, who, after the discovery of the law, received their additional allowance. Yet such was the fact.