pursuance of the provisions of the said original act, and the supplements thereto.
Approved, March 3, 1815.
Act of April 29, 1816, ch. 154.Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That the Illinois territory shall be divided into three circuits in the manner and for the purposes hereinafter mentioned.Illinois territory to be divided into three circuits.
Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That the counties of Madison and St. Clair shall compose the first circuit, the counties of Randolph and Johnson shall composeCounties composing each circuit. the second circuit, and the counties of Gallatin and Edwards shall compose the third circuit.
Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the judges heretofore appointed, or which may hereafter be appointed for the Illinois territory, under the authority of the government of the United States, shall, previous to the time prescribed by this act for holding the first court in the said territory,Allotment of circuits. proceed to allot amongst themselves the circuit in which they shall respectively preside, which allotment shall continue in force for and during the term of one year thereafter; and such allotment shall be annually renewed, and which allotment, in writing, signed by the said judges, or a majority of them, shall be entered of record in the said courts, respectively, by the clerks thereof, at the commencement of the term next after such allotment shall have been made.
Two terms to be held annually in each county.Sec. 4. And be it further enacted, That it shall be the duty of the said judges respectively to hold two terms annually in each county in their respective circuits, in conformity with the preceding sections of this act, which shall commence at the times hereinafter mentioned, that is to say, in the county of Madison on the last Mondays in May and September, in the county of St. Clair on the second Mondays in June and October, in the county of Randolph on the third Mondays in June and October, in the county of Johnson on the fourth Mondays in June and October, in the county onf Gallatin on the first Mondays in July and November, and in the county of Edwards on the second Mondays in July and November, in each year, and the said courts shall be styled circuit courts for the counties in which such courts shall be held respectively.
Where courts are to be holden.Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, That the said courts shall be holden at the respective courthouses of the said counties, and the said judges respectively shall in their respective circuits have jurisdiction over all causes, matters or things at common law or in chancery,Extent of jurisdiction. arising in each of said counties, except in cases where the debt or demand shall be under twenty dollars, in which cases they shall have no jurisdiction.
Authority of the judges.Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the said judges shall be conservators of the peace, and the said circuit courts, in term time, or the judges thereof in vacation, shall have power to award injunctions, writs of ne exeat, habeas corpus, and all other writs and process that may be necessary to the execution of the power with which they are or may be vested.
Circuit courts empowered to try felonies, &c.Sec. 7. And be it further enacted, That the said circuit courts respectively shall have power to hear and determine all treasons, felonies, and other crimes, and misdemeanors that may be committed within the respective counties aforesaid, and that may be brought before them respectively, by any rules or regulations prescribed by law.Suits to be tried in counties where they originate.Sec. 8. And be it further enacted, That all suits shall be tried in the counties in which they originate, unless in cases that are or may be specially provided for by law.