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FLORIDA.

Constitution adopted 1845.-Square Miles 59,268 - Population in 1850, 87,387,

Exemptions. THE necessary wearing-apparel and bedding of every person, and the necessary wearing apparel, bedding, and kitchen furniture of every family, shall be exempt from execution, ettachment, and distress. The follow. ing property may be claimed as exempt from execution, attachment, and distress, except for violation of the criminal laws: the borse, saddle, and bridle, or the horse, saddle, vehicle, and harness, of every clergyman, not exceeding in value one hundred dollars.

The horse, saddle, and bridle, medicine, and professional books, and instruments, of every surgeon, mid

wife, or physician, not exceeding in value one hundred dollars : one set of working-tools, or instruments of every mechanic, artist, dentist, artisan, or tradesman, not exceeding in value one hundred dollars.

The horse and gun not exceeding in value one hundred dollars, belonging to ev. ery farmer who is in actual cultivation of five or more acres of land within the state;

Every actual housekeeper with a family, may claim as exempt, such portion of nis property as may be necessary to the support of himself and family, not to exceed in value one hundred dollars; thereby waiving claim to all right to other exemption of property; provided, in every case, the defendant is not moving out of the state, nor resides beyond the limits thereof, nor is removing his property beyond the limits of the same, nor is secreting or fraudulently disposing of his property for the purpose of avoiding the payment of his just debts; and, provided also the defendant shall make affidavit that he hath made a fair, full, and complete statement of all his property, in trust or otherwise, of all moneys, debts, and demands, due or to become due, which statement shall be signed by him and with the affidavit accompanying the return of the process.

Every farmer seized and possessed of forty acres of land, in his or her own right in fee simple, and shall actually have in cultivation at least ten acres of the same, shall hold the same free and exempt from execution, attachment, or distress, except for a violation of the criminal law, or for fines or taxes ; provided, the land and improvements do not exceed in value two hundred dollars.

Also the boat and gun of every fisherman, pilot, or resident upon any island or coast, or any bay, harbor, or inlet of the state, and the boat and fat of any ferryman, when in either case the same shall not exceed in value two hundred dollars.

Every owner of a dwelling-house in a city, town, or village, provided he shall actually reside in said house, and provided also the same shall not exceed in value three hundred dollars, shall hold the same free from execution, attachment, or distress, except for violation of the criminal laws, or for fines or taxes.—Passed January 22, 1851.

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Mechanics' Lien. MASTER-BUILDERS and mechanics of every denomination, in the state of Florida, contracting and engaging 'to put up and erect buildings of every description, or engaging to perform jobs of work on any such buildings, shall have a lien on all such build. ings as they may put up or erect or work upon, until the compensation for

services shall be fully paid and satisfied, to the amount agreed upon between the contracting parties.

They shall enforce the lien only in the following cases, viz. : 1. Where the contract shall be reduced to writing and signed by the parties making the same. 2. Where

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the amount shall be liquidated between the contracting parties, and a net balance be struck between the persons contracting to perform as aforesaid, or provide materials.

All contracts entered into, liquidated or net balance struck, shall be recorded in the clerk's office of the circuit court, for the county where such contract shall be required to be executed, within thirty days after their execution.

Artisans, builders, and mechanics, and those who furnish materials for buildings under contract with the proprietor thereof, and all sub-contractors shall have a lien for such material furnished, and for work and labor done on houses and other edi. fices, by them hereafter erected in whole or in part, each one for his own work and materials furnished.

Every person wishing to avail bimself of the benefits of this act, except sabcontractors, must file with the clerk of the circuit court of the county in which the building to be charged is situate, and within six months after the materials have been furnished or the work and labor performed, a just and true account of the demand due him after all credits, and verify it by his own oath or that of some other person, and also file at the same time a correct description of the property to be charged with said lien.

Every sub-contractor shall give notice in writing to the proprietor, of his intention to furnish materials or perform labor on the building, and the probable value thereof, and if afterward (the proprietor or his agent not objecting), materials are furnished or work done, the sub-contractor shall settle with the contractor in wri. ting, the same signed by the contractor, and certified by him to be just, shall be left with the owner or proprietor, or bis agent, and within ten days from the time the materials are furnished or work done, the sub-contractor shall file with the clerk of the circuit court of the county in which the building is situate, a copy of such settlement which shall be a lien on the building; and he must also file a correct description of the property to be charged with the lien.

The land upon wbich any building shall be erected, together with a convenient space around the same not exceeding five hundred square feet, clear of the building, shall also be subject to the above liens.

Ship-chandlers, storekeepers, and all dealers, mechanics, and workmen, shall have a lien on any ship, vessel, steamboat, or other water craft, for all stores, provisions, rigging, or other materials, or labor or services of any kind furnished or rendered to, or for the use of such vessel, &c. ; which lien shall have a preference over all others; the lien to cease if not enforced within twenty days after the sacae accrued.

Chattel Mortgages.

THESE must be acknowledged and recorded in the county where the morto gaged property shall be at the time of the execution of the mortgage.

Law Regulating Contracts. No action shall be brought whereby to charge any executor or administrator, upon any special promise, to answer damages out of his own estate ; or whereby to charge the defendant, upon any special promise, to answer for the debt, default, or miscarriage, of another person ; to charge any person, upon any agreement made upon consideration of marriage; or upon any contract for sale of lands, tenements, or hereditaments, or any uncertain interest in or concerning them, or for any hire thereof, for a longer term than one year; or upon any agreement that is not to be performed within the space of one year from the inaking thereof; unless the agreement upon which such action shall be brought, or some memorandum or note thereof, shall be in writing, and signed by the party to be charged therewith, or some other person thereunto by him lawfully authorized.

No contract for the sale of any personal property, or goods, wares, and merchandises, shall be allowed to be good, except the buyer shall accept part of the goods so sold, and actually receive the same, or give something in earnest to bind the bargain or in

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part payment, or that some note or memorandum in writing of the said bargain be made and signed by the parties to be charged by such contract, or their agents thereunto lawfully authorized.

Limitation of Actions. ACTIONS for the recovery of real property must be brought within seven years. In case of disability, of infancy, &c., within four years after the removal of such disability. In case of death during disability, then within three years thereafter. --Act of Jan. 1848.

All actions upon the case, other than for slander, of account, for trespass, debt, deti. nue and replevin for goods and chattels, and the said actions of trespass quare clausum fregit, must be brought within five years next after the cause of action accrued. Actions of assault, battery, wounding, and imprisonment, within three years.

Actions upon the case for words within one year. Actions founded upon any account for goods sold and delivered, or for any article charged in any book-account, must be brought within two years from the delivery of the goods : if the creditors or the debtors die within such two years, then the further time of two years.

Infants, married women, persons insane, imprisoned, beyond seas, or out of the country, have the same periods respectively after the removal of their disability.

Actions of account, as concern merchandise between merchant and merchant, actions of debt on speciality, actions of covenant, are not regulated by statute, but governed by the English law prior to 1776.

In suits against administrators on open account, it is the duty of the court to expunge every item due five years before the death of the party.

No action can be brought on, or scire facias to revive a judgment against an administrator or executor after five years from the time such administrator or executor qualiticd.

If any person, by absconding, concealing himself, or otherwise, prevents his creditor from bringing suit within the time above specified, the statute may not be pleaded by such person in bar of any suit brought against him.

Collection of Debts. ATTACHMENT.-Attachment may issue upon an affidavit that there is a debt due or to become due within nine months, and that the debtor is actually removing out of the state, or resides beyond the limits, or absconds, or conceals himself, so that ordinary process can not be served upon him, or is removing his property beyond the limits of the state, or secreting or fraudulently disposing of the same for the purpose of avoiding the payment of his just debts.

Imprisonment for debt does not exist.

Deeds. CONVEYANCES must be made by deed in writing, sealed and delivered in the presence of at least two witnesses. They must be acknowledged before the officer authorized by law to record the same, or before some judicial officer of this state. The officer taking the acknowledgment shall know or have satisfactory proof that the person making such acknowledgment is the individual described in and who executed the deed.

If the acknowledgment is made out of the state, then before the commissioner appointed for that purpose.

Dower in any lands, tenements, or hereditaments, in this state, may be extingaished by the wife making herself a party to the conveyance for the purpose of relinquishing the same, or she may by a separate relinquishment under her hand and seal, executed in the presence of two witnesses, renounce her right of dower, and in no other way whatever; provided, such relinquishment or renunciation shall not in either case be valid against or binding upon the wife executing the same or any person or persons claiming through or under her, unless it be accompanied by an acknowledgment under the hand and seal of the wife taken and made, separ. ately and apart from her husband, before some judicial officer of this state, when it shall have been made therein, that the said relinquishment and renunciation of

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