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general tax. It was never intended that a court martial should exercise the inquisitorial power of examining into and deciding upon the amount of the taxable property of every person who may

be liable to perform militia duty. It would not only be an odious "The tax re. duty for the officers to perform, but it would be offensive to the turr, precen community. To avoid any such difficulty, therefore, the law sis of assess has made the preceding tax returns, and not the property which

the party may possess, the basis of the assessment. The officers
in this case appear to have taken the property which the relator
is supposed to have possessed at the time of default, which was
ascertained by subsequent returns or from some other evidence,
as the basis of their calculation instead of the preceding return.
They have gone upon a mistaken view of the law, and the pro-
hibition must be granted. ...


THE STATE vs. E. Blythe. 3 MoCord, 363.
346. The defendant was indicted under the clause of the patrol
act of 1819, which requires "that every owner of a settled plan-
tation, shall employ and keep on such plantation, some white
man capable of performing patrol duty, under the penalty, &c.
Provided, that nothing herein contained shall be construed to
affect any person or persons who resides on his, her or their plan-
tation for the space of seven months in the year, &c.” The
defendant lived in her house in Georgetown seven months in the
year. Her lot, on which her house is built, adjoins her plantation,
and the negroes of the plantation lived at a short distance from

her house. There was a street between; but she owned all the live on any land from her house to the Point. Determined that the deparco planfendant might live on any part of her land, however distant she

might be from her slaves, and whether part of her land should happen to be checked off upon paper, as town lots or not, it made no difference in the construction of the act; nor is it importapt whether the owner lives on the north or south side of a

street, or above or below a mere ideal line, which constitutes the What is a boundary between his plantation and å town. The word “planplantation.

tation" means any body of land consisting of one or several adjoining tracts on which is a planting establishment.

RELIGIOUS ASSEMBLY. Bell ads. GRAHAM. 1 Nott . M Cord, 278. 347. On the trial of this case it appeared that a Methodist So. ciety had established a church at Shady Grove, at which they had stated and regular meetings which were generally and numerously attended by the black population of the neighbourhood, as well as the white. It was uncertain whether the congregation was constituted of a majority of blacks or whites. At one of the meetings of the congregation, the plaintiff, who was then acting under a regular authority from the captain of the beat company, went with a party of three or four persons to the house of meet

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ing, in time of service, having hickory switches, the instruments with which they usually executed their commission. On their approach the blacks fled ; one was caught and wbipt at a little distance from the meeting house. Determined that the patrol were not authorised under the act of 1740 to correct the slaves Place of assembled, because there were white persons with them ; nor by meeting the act of 1800, as, by that act, the place of meeting must be prie fined. vate or confined, or the meeting itself in the night time. In the case under consideration the meeting was at a public meeting house, the doors of which were open, and in the midst of day.

TICKET OR PASS FOR SLAVE. Hogg vs. Keller and others. 2 Nott f. M. Cord, 113. 348. This was an action to recover damages for unlawfully whipping the plaintiff's negro. Keller, stiling himself captain of a patrol, and the other defendants, acting under his authority, whipped the plaintiff's negro, who had a pass from his master. The number of stripes were not many, nor were they severely laid on. The defendant attempted to justify under the patrol law, and on the ground that the pass was not according to law, because it did not state to what place the negro was going. Determined that the law does not require a master to state in every ticket or pass pass to what place the negro shall be permitted to go. It is suf- for slave. ficient if it express a leave of absence for such a time. The defendants were therefore guilty of a trespass on plaintiff's property. Ignorance of the law under which they acted, could not excuse them. The appointment of a patrol is temporary, and should be proved by the captain of the beat.

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THE STATE vs. JOSEPH Cole and others. 2 M. Cord, 117.

349. The defendants in this case were indicted for a riot. It was proved that the prosecutor, about 1 o'clock in the morning, was aroused from his sleep by the report of a gun. Immediately after, he heard another. He went out of his house, and on his way to his negro houses, met captain Cole, one of the defendants, who was abusing one of his negroes. The negro was complaining of having been beaten by bim. The prosecutor asked Cole what he was doing? he said he was patrolling. Prosecutor asked why he had beaten the negro ? He said on account of her insolence. Another negro came up to them, and said Cole had struck him in the face with the butt of his gun. Cole said he had done it, because the negro had refused to obey his orders. Prosecutor asked why guns had been fired? Cole said they had been shooting dogs, and advanced towards him, brandishing bis gun in a very angry manner, and using threatening language. At this time the two other defendants came out of the negro houses, armed with guns and sabres. They were desired to do their du

ty, and prosecutor went with them to the negro houses. They went to one house and examined it. Cole then abused prosecutor outrageously. Several of the prosecutor's dogs were shot and cut to pieces by the defendants with their sabres. One of the negroes had been beaten with a sabre. Cole had frequently been at the prosecutor's plantation before, and committed similar outrages, under pretence of patrolling. Cole was the captain of the beat company of the parish, and had been for several years. The other defendants did not say any thing, but appeared by their conduct to be acting in concert with him.

The jury found the defendants guilty, and this was a motion for a new trial on the following 'grounds:

1st. That the facts and circumstances attending the transaction were not such as to constitute a riot.

2d. That as the defendants were acting as a patrol, it could not be a riot, even though similar conduct would be in persons acting without any authority."

3d. That two of the defendants belonged to the company of captain Cole, and acted under his authority, and therefore were not answerable for the part which they took in the affair.

4th. If there was any unlawful act committed, it was the beating of the negroes, which is made an indictable offence by an act of the legislature, and a specific penalty imposed, and there. fore they ought to have been indicted under the act, and not for a riot.

Determinedthat the defendants were guilty of a'riot, and that all their acts were against the peace, and calculated to excite ter

ror and alarm. That they were not a regularly organized Captain of a beat compe patrol, and that the captain of a beat company cannot constitute ny cannot be himself the captain of a patrol. That a patrol is not authorised patrol. when it enters a plantation, to announce its approach with the

firing of guns, or to commence its operations by killing a man's

dogs, carry them on by beating his negroes, and conclude with What may abusing himself. If circumstances exist which can in any manexcuse vio.

On ner excuse such conduct, or which renders any degree of viopatrol lence necessary, such necessity must be made to appear. That

if a patrol which originally assembled for the purpose of performing a lawful duty, afterwards unite in committing a breach of the peace, it is as much a riot as if the original assemblage had been for that purpose. That as captain Cole had no right to command a patrol, the other defendants were under no obligation to obey him ; and that (on the fourth ground), the prosecutor did not proceed for the penalty under the act for beating negroes, but prosecuted for a common law offence.

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Patrol may commit a riota

John PORTEOUS vs. J. HAZEL and others. 1 Harper, 332.

350. This was an action of trespass for taking two guns from the plantatiou of the plaintiff. The defendants and others assuming to act as a patrol, went into the house of the plaintiff, and took from thence two guns. The plaintiff was not then living in his house, but it was in the possession of a coloured

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man, who took charge of and acted as overseer of the plantation. He was asleep when they came to the house and opened the doors. No regularly appointed captain of patrol was present, but the son of the captain of patrol, who claimed to command by authority of his father, as his deputy. Determinedthat the defendants and those associated with them, could not be considered as a patrol. A strict conformity to the provisions of the patrol laws, is indispensably necessary to constitute a legal patrol. But supposing they had been a regularly constituted patrol : When patrol There is no authority given by the patrol laws or any other law house. of the state, to enter the dwelling house of one, a free man of the country, in which there is no riot nor disorder, and take from thence his arms or any other property. The act of the defendants was illegal

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COURT MARTIAL. Macon vs. Cook and others. 2 Nott & M.Cord, 379. 351. This was an action of trespass for taking the plaintiff's horse. The defendants were officers in a troop of cavalry, and held a court martial to try defaulters at a regimental muster, and had fined the plaintiff for bis absence therefrom, had issued execution, and taken the horse and bad bim sold to pay the fine. The charges were, that the defendants had acted illegally, and it was contended that their motive was corrupt. The jury found a verdict for the defendant. Upon motion for a new trial, it was Determined that for mere error of opinion, without corrupt mo- Judicial offitives, a judicial officer is not liable, and that as the jury, who cer not liable were the proper tribunal, had so decided, there was no corrup- opinion. tion.

David L. WAKELY ads. THE STATE. 2 Nott & M'Cord, 410.

352. A. Hall was a private in captain Wakely's beat company. He was fined by a court martial, legally constituted, for default at two musters. It was not denied that he had been summoned to attend the court martial to give his excuse, but but it was alleged that he had not been summoned to attend one of the musters, and that he had a legal excuse for his absence at the other; that the court had no proof that he had been summoned to attend either the musters or the court martial, and that execution had been issued to levy the fines without the said A. Hall being previously required to pay the same. Determined that as the court martial was legally constituted and had jurisdiction of the subject in contest, and as Hall was summoned to attend the court and failed to offer any excuse for his absence, there was no usurpation of jurisdiction as would tion prohibir authorise the issuing of a writ of prohibition. That every where court court acting clearly within its jurisdiction, in a case legally constituted, submitted, is independent of all others, to which no appeal is given, and that no prohibition could be granted.

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Persons wounded in

ing slaves to receive reward.

A APPREHENDING SLAVES. ACT of May 10, 1740. Grimke's Public Laws, 165. 353. Sec. vill. If any person shall be maimed, wounded or

disabled in pursuing, apprehending or taking any slave that is ed in runaway, or charged with any criminal offence, or in doing any appreher d other act, matter or thing, in obedience to or in pursuance of

to the direction of this act, he shall receive such reward from the

public, as the General Assembly shall think fit, and if any such person shall be killed, his heirs, executors, or administrators shall receive the like reward.

ASSEMBLING OF SLAVES. ACT of May 10, 1740. Grimke's Publie Laws, 165. * 354. Sec. vir. And it shall and may be lawful for every justice assigned to keep the peace in this province, within his respective county and jurisdiction, upon his own knowledge or view, or upon information received upon oath, either to go in person or by warrant or warrants directed to any constable, or

other proper person, to command to their assistance, any numJustices of ber of persons as they shall see convenient, to disperse any as

sembly or meeting of slaves, which may disturb the peace, or endanger the safety of his majesty's subjects, and to search all suspected places, for arms, ammunition or stolen goods, and to apprehend and secure all such slaves as they shall suspect to be guilty of any crimes or offences whatsoever, and to bring them to speedy trial, according to the direction of this act; and in case any constable or other person shall refuse to obey or execute any of the warrants on precepts of such justices, or any of them, within their several limits and precincts, or shall refuse to

the Peace to disperse assemblies slaves:

* Assisting in dispersing unlawful assemblies--See Grimke's Public Laws, 165.

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