Page:United States Statutes at Large Volume 2.djvu/367

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Statute ⅠⅠ.


March 3, 1805.
Chap. XXXI.—An Act further providing for the government of the district of Louisiana.[1]

District of Louisiana changed into that of the territory of Louisiana, with a different government.
1804, ch. 38.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That all that part of the country ceded by France to the United States, under the general name of Louisiana, which, by an act of the last session of Congress, was erected into a separate district, to be called the district of Louisiana, shall henceforth be known and designated by the name and title of the Territory of Louisiana, the government whereof shall be organized and administered as follows:

Executive power vested in a governor.
How appointed, &c.
His powers and authorities.
The executive power shall be vested in a governor, who shall reside in said territory, and hold his office during the term of three years, unless sooner removed by the President of the United States. He shall be commander in chief of the militia of the said territory, superintendent ex officio of Indian affairs, and shall appoint and commission all officers in the same, below the rank of general officers; shall have power to grant pardons for offences against the same, and reprieves for those against the United States, until the decision of the President thereon shall be known.

Secretary to be appointed—
His duties, &c.
Sec. 2. There shall be a secretary, whose commission shall continue in force for four years, unless sooner revoked by the President of the United States, who shall reside in the said territory, and whose duty it shall be, under the direction of the governor, to record and preserve all the papers and proceedings of the executive, and all the acts of the governor and of the legislative body, and transmit authentic copies of the same every six months, to the President of the United States. In case of a vacancy of the office of governor, the government of the said territory shall be exercised by the secretary.

Legislative powers, in whom and how vested.
No law to be valid if inconsistent with the constitution and laws of the United States.
All criminal trials shall be by jury.
Laws to be published and laid before Congress, and if disapproved of by Congress to cease.
Sec. 3. The legislative power shall (be) vested in the governor and in three judges, or a majority of them, who shall have power to establish inferior courts in the said territory, and prescribe their jurisdiction and duties, and to make all laws which they may deem conducive to the good government of the inhabitants thereof: Provided however, that no law shall be valid which is inconsistent with the constitution and laws of the United States, or which shall lay any person under restraint or disability on account of his religious opinions, profession, or worship, in all of which he shall be free to maintain his own and not be burthened with those of another. And provided also, that in all criminal prosecutions, the trial shall be by a jury of twelve good and lawful men of the vicinage, and in all civil cases of the value of one hundred dollars, the trial shall be by jury, if either of the parties require it. And the governor shall publish throughout the said territory, all the laws which may be made as aforesaid, and shall from time to time report the same to the President of the United States, to be laid before Congress, which, if disapproved of by Congress, shall thenceforth cease and be of no effect.

Judges to be appointed, to hold their offices for four years, to hold two courts in a year.
At what place.
Their jurisdiction.
Governor to lay out the territory into districts, &c.
To appoint magistrates, &c. for the same.
Sec. 4. There shall be appointed three judges, who shall hold their offices for the term of four years, who, or any two of them, shall hold annually two courts within the said district, at such place as will be most convenient to the inhabitants thereof in general: shall possess the same jurisdiction which is possessed by the judges of the Indiana territory, and shall continue in session until all the business depending before them shall be disposed of.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That for the more convenient distribution of justice, the prevention of crimes and injuries, and execution of process criminal and civil, the governor shall proceed from time

  1. By the act of June 4, 1812, chap. 95, entitled, “An act for providing for the government of the territory of Missouri,” the territory of Louisiana shall be called “Missouri.”