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notice thereof to the Selectmen of that town in which such their field is, and to the Selectmen of the two next towns adjacent, of what cattle, horses, and swine, are impounded by them; and if the owners do not redeem their cattle, horses, and swine, so impianded, within twenty-four hours afier notice to them given of the same, that then the Selectmen of that town to which such cattle, horses, or swine, do belong, shall make sale of them, as shall answer such damages done to such Indian or Indians, by such cattle, horses, or swine, as aforesaid..
And it is further cructed by the authority aforesaid, That no person or persons in this colony, whether inhabitants or other, shall bay, hire, or receive a gift or mortgage any parcel of land or lands, of any Indian or Indians for the future, except he or they do buy or receive the same for the use of the colony, or for some plantation or village, or with the allowance of the General Court of this colony.
And if any person or persons shall purchase or receive land of any Indian or Indians, contrary to the intent of this act, the person or persons so offending shali forfeit to the public treasury of this colony, the treble value of the land so purchased or received; and no interest or estate in any lands ion this colony, shall accrue to any such person or persons by force or virtue of such illegal bargain, purchase, or receipt.
And upon consideration of the great inconvenience that doth ensue the trusting the Indians with goods and commodities, which, if not prevented, is like to prove extremely prejudicial to the English, and destructive to the Indians,
Be il further enucted by the authority aforesai.l, That no person shall be allowed or admitted to prosecute before any assistant, or Justice of the Peace or Court of Judicature in this colony, any action of debt or detinue for any goods sold, lent, or trusted out, to any Indian or Indians whomsoever.
Always provided, This act shall not be understood or interpreted to debar any person from the benefit of law, for the recovery of any rent due to him from any Indian or Indians, for land by him or them hired or improved.
.. [1717.] « An act concerning purchasers of native rights to land." This Assembly observing many difficulties and perplexities arising in this Government, by reason of many purchases of land made of Indian titles, without the preceeding allowance or subsequent approbation of this Assembly: Which to remove,
It is hereby enacted and declared by this Assembly, and the authority thereof, That all lands in this Government are holden of the King of Great Britain as the lord of the fee, and that no title to any lands in this colony can accrue by any purchase made of Indians, on pretence of their being native proprietors thereof, without the allowance and approbation of this Assembly.
And it is hereby resolved, That no conveyance of native right, or Indian tittle, without the allowance or approbation of this Assembly, as aforesaid, shall be given in evidence of any man's title, or pleadable in any court.
And further it is resolved, That (inasmuch as many such purchases have been made, and the persons who have so made them, or those who claim under them, may think they have hard measures, if they may not retain some considerable proportion thereof, or other lands in lieu thereof assigned to
them,) John Hamlin, Esq. Mr. John Hooker, and Captain James Wadstrorth, shall be a committee, or any two of them, by such ways and means as they shall think fit, to enquire into and gain a true understanding, of all the claims aforesaid, and lay the true circumstances of all the said claims before the Assembly in October next, with what they may understand may be to the satisfaction of the claimers, either within the bounds of any town with the consent of the proprietors, cr elsewhere, within the ungranted lands of this colony, together with their opinion thereon; to this end, that the said Assembly may settle this whole affair, and proceed to the settlement of all the undisposed lands in this colony, in such manner as shall then be determined, that all future troubles about our settlements may be avoided.
An act for the more effectual well ordering of the Indians, and for the
bringing of them to the knowledge of the Gospel.—[ 1717. ] WHEREAS, pursuant to an act of the Assenıbly, holded in Hartford, on the ninth day of May, in the present year, one thousand seven hundred and seventeen: The Governor and Council have laid before this Assembly seve. ral measures for bringing the lodians in this colony to the knowledge of the gospel, which was the avowed design of those that obtained the patent for this corporation, to hold the land and government of the colony:
Upon consideration of which measures, the Governor and company of this, his Majestie's colony, in General Court assembled, desirous of pursuing in the best manner the solemn professions of our predecessors, have enacted.
Andit is hereby enacted by the Governour, Council, und Representatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, That care be taken annually, by the authority of eacb town, to convene the Indians inhabiting in each town, and acquaint them with the laws of the Government for punishing such immoralities as they shall be guilty of, and make them sensible that no exemption from the penalties of such laws lies for them, any more than for other his Majestie's subjects.
And forasmuch as drunkenness and idleness may well be looked upon as amongst the strongest chains that hold them fast in their ignorance of, and prejudices against, the religion of the Gospel:
Be it enacted, therefore, by the authority aforesaid, That whosoever shall be convicted of selling any Indian strong drink, by the testimony of any one witness, with other strong circumstances, or by the accusation of any Indian, (unless such accused person shall acquit himself by oath) shall incur the penalty of twenty shillings: any assistant or justice of the peace to hear and determine the same. And in case the said person so convict, shall appeal to the County Court, thereupon trial had, and judgment given against the appellant, (from which no appeal shall be allowed) the said appellant shall incur a further penalty, not exceeding forty shillings nor under twenty shillings, to be laid by the said Court. And the penalties so incurred shall be one-half to the prosecu:or or informer, whether an Englishman or an Indian, and the other half to the treasury of the county where such person shall be convict. And all grandjurymen shall take diligent care to make presentment of any person or persons whom they shall know, or upon good grounds have reason to suspect, have sold drink to any Indian, contrary to this or any other act provided against the same..,
And it is further provided, That nothing in this act shall be taken to excuse any person whatsoever from any penalty whatsoever which he may • incur by virtue of any other law prohibiting selling of drink without licence.
And forasmuch as idleness appears to be a great obstruction to the Indians receiving the Gospel of Truth, and it might very much conduce to their reformation, in that particular, if they were, by easy and agreeable methods, brought from their pagan manner of living, and encouraged to make settlemen's i convenient places, in villages, after the English manner:
It i he eby resolved, That measures shall be used to form villages of the natives, wherein the several families of tiem should have suitable portions of land appropriated to them, so that the said portions shall descend from the father to his children, the more to encourage them to apply themselves to husbandry, and good diligence therein, for their support.
And whereas, there is a considerable tract of land in the township of New London, which is said to be suitable and sufficient to make such a village, and, upon which there are now living the largest number of Indians that live together in any one place in this Government,
Be it therefore enacted, That Nathan Gold, Esq. John Hamblin, Esq. Samuel Eells, Esq. Jona. Law, Esq. Judges of the Superior Court, or any two or more of them, do make a view of said tract of land, visit the Indians living on it, take account of the number of their families and persons, of the quantity and quality of said land, with other circumstances thereof, in respect of any claims made thereto, or possession thereon, and lay a plan of the same before the General Court, for their further direction, that they may be the better enabled to proceed in forming a village of the said Indians there, and bringing them to such civil order, co-habitation, and industry, as may facilitate the setting up the Gospel ministry among them. And that they view, and make report of all the land formerly sequestred to said Indians.
(1722.] 66 An act for preventing trespasses on the lands of this Colony, by ille. gal purchases thereof from the Indians, passed by the General Court
or Assembly of Connecticut, in New Haven.” WAEREAS this Assembly have been informed, that, notwithstanding the an
tient laws of this Colony, some persons have pretended to purchase of Indians, their rights as natives, of many considerable tracts of land lying within this Colony; and, although all such deeds, when obtained without the leave and consent of this Assembly, are, by the sud law, declared to be, ipso facto, void; yet, under colour of such dceds, persons unacquainted with the said laws may be imposed upon, deceived, and greatly wronged, as well as the settlements of such lands in plantations, pursuant to the end expressed in our charter, hindered:
For the prevention whereof, Be it enacted by the Governour, Council, and Representatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, 'That whom ever shall presume to purchase any lands within the bounds of this Colony, of any Indians whatsoever, without the leave of this Assembly hereafter had and obtained, under colour and pretence of such Indians being the proprietors of said lands by a native right; or shall, having purchased of any Indians, lands in such manner, without leave of this Assembly first had, or the confirmation of this Assembly afterwards obtained, presume to make
ans sale of, or any settlements upon, any lands so purchased, every person who shall in any such manner transgress, and be thereof convicted in the County Court or in the Superior Court of that county where such lands shall lye, shall incur the penalty of fifty pounds to the treasury of this Colony. And, whatsoever person or persons shall suffer any wrongs by means of such sale or settlement as aforesaid, shall recover, in either of the said courts, upon proof of such wrong by him suffered, treble damages against the person or persons so wronging of him.
An act for preventing trespasses on the lands of this Colony, by illegal
purchases thereof from the Indians. [1722.] WHEREAS this Assembly have been informed that, notwithstanding the an
tient laws of this Colony to the contrary, some persons have pretended to purchase of Indians their rights as natives, of many considerable tracts of land lying within the Colony; and although all such deeds, when obiained without the leave and consent of this Assembly, are by the said law declared to be ipso facto void; yet, under colour of such deeds, persons unacquainted with the said laws may be imposed upon, deceived, and greatly wronged, as well as the settlement of such lands in plantations, pursuant to the end expressed in our charter, hindered:
For the preservation whereof, Beil enacted by the Governour, Council,and Representatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, That whosoerer shall presume to purchase any lands within the bounds of this Colony of any Indians whatsoever, without the leave of this Assembly hereafter first had and obtained, under colour or pretence of such Indians being the proprietors of said lands by a native right; or shall, having purchased of any Indians lands in such manner without leave from this Assembly first had, or the confirmation of this Assembly afterwards obtained, presume to make any sale of, or any settlements upon, any lands so purchased, every person who shall in any such manner transgress, and be thereof convicted in the County Court or in the Superior Court of that county where such lands shall lye, shall incur the penalty of fifty pounds to the treasury of this Colony; and whatsoever person or persons shall suffer any wrong by means of such sale or settlement as aforesaid, shall recover, in either of the said courts, upon proof of such wrong by him suffered, treble damages against the person or persons so wronging of him.
[In the edition of laws of Connecticut of 1750.) An Act for preventing foreigners trading with and corrupting the In
dions; and carrying on other evil and dangerous designs against this Colony.
Be il enacted by the Governour, Council, and Representatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, That it shall not be lawful for any Frenchman, Dutchman, or any subject or vassal of any foreign Prince or Statc, to trade with any Indian or Indians within the limits of this Colony, either directly or indirectly, by themselves or others, upon penalty of the forfeiture of such goods, wares, and vessels, as shall be found so trading, or traded, or the due value thereof, upon chuc proof made of any
goods, wares, or merchandizes, traded, or of any vessel belonging to any such foreigner so trading.
And it shall be lawful for any person or persons, inhabiting within this Co-: lony, to scise, or cause to be seised, any such goods, wares, or merchandize, so traded, or such vessels so trading with the Indians, contrary to this act; and to prosecute to condemnation thereof, in any court of record in this Colony: the one moiety whereof shall belong to the party seising or causing to be seised, and prosecuting, and the other moiety to the public treasury of this Colony. An act for well ordering and governing the Indians in this Colony,
and securing their interests and lands therein.—[1750.] WHEREAS, the bringing the Indians in this land to the knowlege and obcdience of the only true God and Saviour of mankind, and the Christian faith, as well as to a civil and peaceable behaviour, was one great end professed by the first sețilers of this Colony, in obtaining the Royal charter; which profession this Court being always desirous in the best manner to pursue: Therefore,
, Be it enacted by the Governour, Council, and Representatives, in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the saine, That the authority and selectmen of cach town wherein there are any Indians living or residing, shall take care, and they are hereby directed, to endeavour to assemble and convene such Indians annually, and acquaint them with the laws of the Government made for punishing such immoralities as they may be guilty of; and make them sensible that they are not exempted from the penalties of such laws any more than his Majesty's other subjects in the colony are. And for as much as drunkenness and idleness may be looked upon as a great means of holding them in ignorance of, and prejudiced against, the truths of religion: Therefore,
Be il further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That no person or persons whatsoever, shall, directly or indirectly, sell, truck, barter, give, or deliver to any Indian, any strong beer, ale, cyder, perry, wine, rum, brandy, or other strong or spiritous liquorx, by what name or names so ever called or known, ou pain of forfeiting the sum of ten shillings for every pint, and proportionable for any greater or lesser quantities so sold, trucked, bartered, given, or delivered to any Indian, directly or indirectly, as aforesaid, upon conviction thereof before any court, assistant, or justice of the peace, proper to try the same: one hall of which penalties shall be to him or them, whether English or Indian, wlio shall inform and prosecute to effect; and the other half, where the case is tried before a single minister of justice, to the town treasury; but when tried before the county court, then to the county treasury of that county wherein such person shall be convicted. And all grand jurynen shall take diligent care io make enquiry aster, and preseat all breaches of this act. And the testimony of one witness, with other strong circumstances, on the accusation of an Indian (unless the person accused will acquit himself upon oath) shall be accepted as evidence sufficient to convict a person of the breach of this act: Provided, nevertheless, That nothing in this act shall be constructed to hinder or restrain any act of charity, for relieving an Indian in any case of sickness or necessity. . And every Indian convicted of drunkenness in this colony, shall forfeit and pay