Difference between revisions of "Collection of All Such Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia (1794)"

From Wythepedia: The George Wythe Encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
(Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy)
Line 28: Line 28:
 
==Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy==
 
==Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy==
  
View the record for this book in [https://catalog.swem.wm.edu/law/Record/492922 William & Mary's online catalog.]
+
Images of the library's copy of this book are [https://www.flickr.com/photos/wolflawlibrary/sets/72157656454616843 available on Flickr.] View the record for this book in [https://catalog.swem.wm.edu/law/Record/492922 William & Mary's online catalog.]
  
 
==See also==
 
==See also==

Revision as of 09:13, 18 September 2015

General Assembly of VIrginia

Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia (1794)
CollectionOfAllSuchActsOfTheGeneralAssemblyOfVirginia1794TitlePage.jpg

Title page from A Collection of All Such Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia, of a Public and Permanent Nature, George Wythe Collection, Wolf Law Library, College of William & Mary.

Author {{{author}}}
Editor {{{editor}}}
Translator {{{trans}}}
Published Richmond: Augustine Davis, printer for the Commonwealth
Date 1794
Edition {{{edition}}}
Language English
Volumes {{{set}}} volume set
Pages 380
Desc. Folio (35 cm.)
Location Shelf L-5
  [[Shelf {{{shelf2}}}]]

A Collection of All Such Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia was published in 1794 and authorized by a 1792 act of the General Assembly.[1] The Collection starts with a few of Virginia’s historical milestones, including the Virginia Declaration of Rights, the Virginia Constitution, and a 1748 act confirming grants made by the King.[2] The laws reflect the need for set standards in the Commonwealth and include acts creating property rights for authors of literary works, defining the law regarding shipwrecks, and establishing a Virginia Statute of Frauds.[3]

The laws also reflect the increasing importance of commerce in the Commonwealth. An important 1786 Act ratified an agreement made between Maryland and Virginia concerning commerce on the Chesapeake Bay and the Potomac River.[4] Other laws dealt with circulation of private bank notes, creation of roads, regulation of food, conveyance of land to the United States for the purpose of building a light house, and navigation of the James River.[5]

After independence, Virginia became increasingly concerned with the competency and virtue of its public officers and the Collection contains numerous laws about public officials. One law, in particular dealt with the practice of bribery and the sale of public office.[6] In particular, the General Assembly directed its focus on reforming and standardizing the court system: the Collection contains rules on the general, district, and county courts.[7] Importantly for George Wythe, a 1792 law concerned the High Court of Chancery and, in addition to providing the boundaries of its jurisdiction and procedure, required that the Court “shall consist of one Judge, to be chosen and commissioned in the manner as directed by the Constitution of this Commonwealth.”[8] One 1792 act provided guidelines for counsel and attorneys at law.[9] These laws may have their origin in Thomas Jefferson’s concern, reflected in earlier laws passed in 1776-1779, that “swarms of petty lawyers would corrupt the grand designs for republican law that he had in mind for Virginia.”[10]

The Collection also deals with slavery and freed slaves. One act banned the importation of slaves from West Africa and the importation of freed slaves from neighboring states. [11] The same act required triennial registration of all freed slaves.[12] Freed men and women were required to carry a certificate confirming registration status at all times and needed the document in order to gain employment.[13]

Overall, the laws contained in the Collection reveal the concerns of lawmakers in the early years of independence and reflect the desire to regulate government, society, and commerce.

Evidence for Inclusion in Wythe's Library

Description of the Wolf Law Library's copy

Images of the library's copy of this book are available on Flickr. View the record for this book in William & Mary's online catalog.

See also

References

  1. A Collection of All Such Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia, of a Public and Permanent Nature, as are Now in Force: to Which are Prefixed the Declaration of Rights, and Constitution, or Form of Government (Richmond: Augustine Davis, 1794) i.
  2. Ibid., 1-10.
  3. Ibid., 14-15.
  4. Ibid., 23-26.
  5. Ibid., 16, 26, 30-31, 44, 54.
  6. Ibid., 56-57.
  7. Ibid., 69, 72, 83.
  8. Ibid., 63-69.
  9. Ibid., 96.
  10. A.G. Roeber, Faithful Magistrates and Republican Lawyers, (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1981) 167.
  11. A Collection of All Such Acts, 315-16.
  12. Ibid.
  13. Ibid