A Political Manual for 1866

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Author: Southern Legislatures  | Date: 1866

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CHAPTER XXV—PROCESS OF RECONSTRUCTION

Legislation on the Freedmen (1865–1866)

BY SOUTHERN LEGISLATURES

A.

SEC. 2 provides that all freedmen, free negroes, and mulattoes in this State, over the age of eighteen years, found on the second Monday in January, 1866, or thereafter, with no lawful employment or business, or found unlawfully assembling themselves together, either in the day or night time . . . shall be deemed vagrants, and on conviction thereof shall be fined in the sum of not exceeding . . . fifty dollars . . . and imprisoned, at the discretion of the court . . . not exceeding ten days. . . .

SEC. 5 provides that . . . in case any freedman, free negro or mulatto, shall fail for five days after the imposition of any fine or forfeiture upon him or her, for violation of any of the provisions of this act to pay the same, that it shall be, and is hereby made, the duty of the sheriff of the proper county to hire out said freedman, free negro or mulatto, to any person who will, for the shortest period of service, pay said fine or forfeiture and all costs: Provided, A preference shall be given to the employer, if there be one, in which case the employer shall be entitled to deduct and retain the amount so paid from the wages of such freedman, free negro or mulatto, then due or to become due; and in case such freedman, free negro or mulatto cannot be hired out, he or she may be dealt with as a pauper.

SEC. 6 provides that . . . it is hereby made the duty of the boards of county police of each county in this State, to levy a poll or capitation tax on each and every freedman, free negro or mulatto, between the ages of eighteen and sixty years, not to exceed the sum of one dollar annually to each person so taxed, which tax when collected shall be paid into the county treasurer’s hands, and constitute a fund to be called the freedmen’s pauper fund, which shall be applied by the commissioners of the poor for the maintenance of the poor of the freedmen, free negroes and mulattoes. . . .

SEC. 7 provides that if any freedman, free negro or mulatto shall fail or refuse to pay any tax levied according to the provisions of the sixth section of this act, it shall be prima facie evidence of vagrancy. . . .

Edward McPherson, (Washington, 1866), 30–40 passim.

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Chicago: Southern Legislatures, "Legislation on the Freedmen (1865– 1866)," A Political Manual for 1866, ed. Edward McPherson in American History Told by Contemporaries, ed. Albert Bushnell Hart (New York: The Macmillan Company, 1903), Original Sources, accessed July 17, 2019, http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PKPP7XZBHWUPWJN.

MLA: Southern Legislatures. "Legislation on the Freedmen (1865– 1866)." A Political Manual for 1866, edited by Edward McPherson, in American History Told by Contemporaries, edited by Albert Bushnell Hart, Vol. 4, New York, The Macmillan Company, 1903, Original Sources. 17 Jul. 2019. www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PKPP7XZBHWUPWJN.

Harvard: Southern Legislatures, 'Legislation on the Freedmen (1865– 1866)' in A Political Manual for 1866, ed. . cited in 1903, American History Told by Contemporaries, ed. , The Macmillan Company, New York. Original Sources, retrieved 17 July 2019, from http://www.originalsources.com/Document.aspx?DocID=PKPP7XZBHWUPWJN.