Imatges de pàgina

vince, made in the year of our Lord sixteen hundred and ninety-eight, entitled " An act for ascertaining the bounds of a certain tract of land, to the use of the Nanticoke Indians, so long as they shall occupy and live upon the 8a7e;" and that the said Indians shall not, at any time hereafter, sell, dispose of, or lease for term of years, any part or parcel of the aforesaid lands, to any person or persons whatsoever; and that the Choptank Indians and their descendants, so long as they shall occupy or claim, and shall not totally desert the same, shall hold and possess, quietly and peaceably, all that tract of land lying in Dorchester county, on Choptank river, according to the metes and bounds thereof, surveyed and returned by the Honorable Philemon Lloyd, Esquire, Colonel Richard Tilghman, and Colonel Matthew Tilghman, ward commissioners, appointed by his honor the Governor to ascertain and lay out the same, pursuant to an act of Assembly of this province, made in the year of our Lord seventeen hundred and twenty-one, that survey being found pursuant and agreeable to the intent and design of one act of Assembly, made at the city of St. Mary's, in the year of our Lord sixteen hundred and sixty-nine, by which that land was granted to the said Indians.

Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That the Choptank Indians aforesaid at any time hereafter, shall not, on any pretence whatsoever, alienate, dispose, sell, or let to farm, any part or parcel of the lands before mentioned, except that part thereof which lies to the Eastward, Southward, and Westward of those lines, formerly run from the head of Secretary Sewall's creck, to the bounded tree of William Dorrington, by Colonel Thomas Smithson and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Ennails, as the exterior bounds of the aforesaid land, pursuant to an ordinance of Assembly then made; and that, if any person shall presume to purchase or lease any part thereof, (except as before excepted) such purchase or lease shall be utterly void, and of none elèct.

Sec. 4. And it is hereby further enucted, That no lease for term of years, or for life, already made, shall be of any force or effect, longer than seven years after the end of this session of Assembly; and that those persons who hold, by virtue of any such lease, from the said Indians, be, and are hereby, obliged punctually and faithfully to pay and satisfy to such Indian or Indians, under whom they hold, the several and respective rents contracted for; and, if any person shall refuse or delay to pay such rent yearly, as it becomes due, such lease shall become void, and it shall and may be lawful for any justice of the peace, within the county where such rent shall arise and become due, and remaining unpaid, upon complaint to him made by such Indians, to issue warrant, give jndgment, and award execution for the same, in the same manner as in the act for recovery of small debts is provided.

Sec. 5. And be it further enacted, Thatall sales, gifts, grants, or leases, made by any of the Indians aforesaid, since November, seventeen hundred and twenty-one, of any of the lands lying on the South side of Secretary Sewall's creek aforesaid, and the Southern branch thereof, and within the lines run by Colonel Thomas Smithson and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Ennalls, as aforesaid, being contrary to an ordinance of Assembly then made, be, and are hereby, declared to be null, void, and of no effect.

Sac. 5. Provided nevertheless, That such surveys and purchases which have already bona fide been made since November, seventeen hundred and twenty-one, or which hereafter shall be bona fide made of any of the Choptank Indian lands, comprehended within the metes and bounds surveyed and ascertained by the Ilonorable Philemon Lloyd, Esquire, Colonel Richt: ard Tilghman, and Colonel Matthew Tilghman, ward commissioners as aforesaid, and lying to the Eastward, Southward, or Westward of the lines run by Colonel Thomas Smithson and Lieutenant Colonel Thomas Ennalls, aforesaid, be, and are hereby, confirmed and made valid unto the purchasers or takers up of the same, and their heirs and assigns, forever, any thing in this act to the contrary notwithstanding.

Sec. 7. Provided likewise, That such purchases by any person or persons, of any lands belonging to the Choptank Indians aforesaid, be made when the Indians are sober, and of sound and perfect memory, and the consideration agreed for, paid, or secured to be paid to them, by such purchasers, before the executing of the deeds of sale; and that all deeds of sale hereafter made by the Indians aforesaid, shall be acknowledged by them before the justices of the county, in court sitting, or before one or more of his lordship’s Council, who are hereby empowered to take the same, otherwise to be void, and of no effect.


[1658.] Indians to be first served with "lands. Be it enacted by this present Grand Assembly, That there be no grants of land to any Englishman whatsoever, (de futuro) until the Indians be first served with the proportion of fiftie acres of land for each bowman; and the proportion of each particular towne to lie together, and to be surveyed, as well woodland as cleered ground; and to be lays out before pattented, with libertie of all waste and unfenced land, for hunting for the Indians.

And be it further enacted, That, where the land of any Indian or Indians be found to be included in any pattent allreadie granted for land at Rappahannock, or the parts adjacent, such pattentee shall either purchase the said land of the Indians, or relinquish the same, and be therefore allowed satisfaction by the English inhabitants of the said places, the said satisfaction to be proportioned equally between them.

[1658. ]

Confirmation of Indians' land. WHEREAS many complaints have bin brought to this Assemblie, touchinge wrong done to the Indians, in takeing away their land, and forceing them into such narrow streights and places, that they cannot subsist, either by planting or hunting; and for that it may be feared, they may be justly driven to despaire, and to attempt some desperate course for themselves; which inconveniences, though they have bin endeavored to be remedied by former acts of Assemblie made to the same purpose, yet, notwithstanding, manie English doe still intrench upon the said Indians' land; which this Assembly conceiveing to be contrary to justice, and the true intent of the English plantation in this country, whereby the Indians might, by all just and faire waies, be reduced to civillity, and the true worship of God, have therefore thought fitt to ordeine and enact, und bee it hereby ordained and enacted, That all the Indians of this collonie shall and may hold and keep those seates of land.

which they now have; and that no person or persons whatsoever, be suffered to intretch or plant upon such places as the said Indians claime or desire, untill full leave from the Governour and Councill, or Commissioners for the place; yet this act not to be extended to prejudice those English which are now cated with the Indians' former consent, unless, uppon further examination before the Grand Assemblie, cause shall be found for so doeing. And the said Commissioners shall be accomptable before the Governour and Councill, and the Grand Assembly, if any wrong or injurie be done to the Indians, contrary to the intent of this act.

And be it further enacted, That the Indians, as either now or hereafter, shall want seates to live on, or shall desire to remove to any places void or uptaken upp, they shall be assisted therein, and order granted them, for confirmation thereof; and no Indians to sell their lands but at Quarter Courtes: And that those English which are lately gone to seate neare the Pamunkies, and the Chichominyes, on the North side of Pamunkie river, shall be recalled, and such English to choose their seates elsewhere; and that the Indians, as by a former act was granted them, shall have free liberty of hunting in the woods without the English fenced plantations; these places excepted, between Yorke river and James river, and between Black water and the Manakin towne, and James river; and no pattent shall be adjudged vahid, which hath lately passed, or shall pass, contrary to the sense of this act, nor none to be of force, which shall intrench uppon the Indians' lands, to their discontent, without express order for the same.

[1660.] WHEREAS the Indians of Accomack have complained that they are very much straightened for want of land, and that the English seat so neare them, that they receive very much damage in theire corne. It is ordered that the Right Honourable the Governour give commission to two or three gen lemen, with a surveyor living on this side of the bay, (that have no re ation to Accomack) to go over thither, and lay out such a proportion of land for the said Indians, as shall be sufficient for their maintenance with hunting and fishing excluded; and that the land soe laid out, to be so secured to the Indians that they may have no power to alienate it, or any part of it, hereafter, to the English.


An act concerning Indians. WHEREAS, at a Grand Assembly, held at James City, September 10th, 1663, it was provided that where any murther was committed by the Indians upon the English, the nexte turne of the Indians was to use their utmost endeavours for discovering the actors and doers thereof, and in regard the said act was only lymited upon the northern Indians: This Grand Assembly have thought fit to enact, and it being enacted, That the said law be made a generall law against all Indians whatsoever, and where any murthers be committed upon the English, the nexte turne is to use all their care and diligence in finding the doers and actors of the said murthers.

And be it further enacted, That if any Englishman is murthered, the nexte turne shall be answerable for it with their lives or liberties to the use of the publique, and that the Right Honourable the Governour, be humbly requested torthwith to empower such persons as His Honour shall think

fitt, in each county on such occasions for putting the said law into immediate execution, and that it be made knowne to all Indians whatsoever by these persons soe commitimated within two months after the said law is in force.

And be it further enacted by this Grand Assembly, That the said Indians shall not have power within themselves to elect or constitute their owne werowance or Chiese Commander, but the pi esent Honourable Governour, and his successors from time to time shall constitute and authorize such persons in whose fidility they may finde the greatest cause to repose a confidence, to be the Commander of the respective townes; and in case the Indians shall refuse their obedience to, or murther such persons, then that nation of Indians soe refusing or offending to be accompted enemies and rebels and to be proceeded against accordingly.

And whereas the careless manner of the English, in going unarmed into churches, courts, and other publique meetings, may probably in time invite the Indians to make some desperare attempt upon them,

It is further enacted, That the Honourable the Governour, be requested to issue his commands to the officers of the malitieo to take care to prevent the same.

And it is further enacted, That any person or persons that shall harbour, entertaine, or employ any Indian, shall be fined five thousand pounds of tobacco, or suffer one year's imprisonment without bayle or maineprise, unles such as shall give sufficient security to the county courts, and upon such security, obteyne a certificate from the said court, and upon that certificate a lycence from the Governour.

And whereas by the former articles of agreement, it was provided, that no Indians which are seated on the South side of James river, should come over the Black water or the Southerne branches thereof.

It is hereby enacted, That the said bounds, from the head of Black water to the Apamatack Indian towne, and thence cross the river to the Monikon towne, be the bounds of the Indians on the South side of James river.

[1705.] An act for prevention of misunderstandings between the tributary In

dians and other her Majesty's subjects of this colony and dominion, and for a free and open trade with all Indians whatever.

1. For prevention of all manner of animosities, jealousies, fears, misunderstandings, and differences, whatsoever, between the tributary Indians and other her Majesty's subjects of this colony and dominion; as, also, the several revenges and mischiefs which may thereupon be sought after, and ensue,

2. Be it enacted by the Governor, Council, and Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enucted by the authority of the same, That it shall not be lawful for an Indian king, or any other of the said tributary Indians whatsoever, to bargain and sell, or demise to any person or persons, other than to some of their own nation, or their posterity, in fee, for life, or for years, the lands laid out and appropriated for the use of the said Indians, or any part or parcel thereof; or to bargain and sell, as aforesaid, any other land whatsoever, now actually possessed, or justly claimed and pretended to by the said Indians, or any of them, by virtue of the articles of peace made and concluded with the said Indians the twentyninth day of May, one thousand six hundred and seventy seven, or by virtue of any other right or title whatsoever; and that every bargain, sale, or demise, hereafter made, contrary to this act, as aforesaid, shall be, and is hereby declared to be, null and void, to all intents, constructions, and purposes, whatsoever.

3. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That, if any person or persons (other than the Indians and their posterity) shall, from and after the publication of this act, presume to purchase or obtain any deed or conveyance in fee, or any lease for years, from any of the tributary Indians, of any lands, tenements, or hereditaments, laid out or appropriated, or now actually possessed, or justly claimed and pretended to, by the said Indians: or shall occupy or tend any of the said lands, by permission of the said Indians, or otherwise, every person or persons so offending, and being thereof lawsully convicted in any court of record within this colony, shall forfeit and pay the sum of ten shillings current money for every acre of land so purchased, leased, or occupied: and for every year during the continuance of the possession or occupation of any lands, by virtue of such purchase or lease, the person or persons so offending shall forfeit and pay the sum of ten shillings current money for every acre of land so possessed or occupied, as aforesaid; one moiety of which said forfeitures shall be to our sovereign lady the queen, her heirs and successors, for and towards the better support of the government of this her majesty's colony and dominion, and the contingent charges thereof, and the other moiety to the informer; to be recovered by action of debt, bill, plaint, or information, wherein no essoin, protection, or wager of law, shall be allowed.

[1776.] Extract from the Constitution or form of Government, agreed to, and

resolved upon, by the Delegates and Representatives of the several Counties and Corporations of Virginia.

Art. 21. The territories contained within the charters erecting the colonies Maryland, Pennsylvania, North and South Carolina, are hereby eeded, released, and forever confirmed to the people of those colonies respectively, with all the rights of property, jurisdiction, and government; and all other rights whatsoever, which might at any time heretofore been claimed by Virginia, except the free navigation and use of the rivers Potomac and Pohomoke, with the property of the Virginia shores or strands bordering on either of the said rivers, and all improvements which have been, or shall be, made thereon. The Western and Northern extent of Vir. ginia shall, in all other respects, stand as fixed by the charter of King James I. in the year one thousand six hundred and nine, and by the public treaty of peace between Great Britain and France, in the year one thousand seven hundred and sixty-three; unless, by act of Legislature, one or more territories shall hereafter be laid off, and governments established Westward of the Allegany mountains. And no purchase of lands shall be made of the Indian natives, but on behalf of the public, by authority of the General Assembly.

[1777.] An act for establishing a General Court. Sec. 38. No person convicted of perjury shall be capable of being a witness in any case, nor shall any negro, mulatto, or Indian, be admitted to give evidence but against or between negroes, mulattoes, or Indians.

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