New Hampshire State Papers

 

 

EARLY STATE PAPERS

 

OF

 

NEW HAMPSHIRE

 

 

INCLUDING THE JOURNALS OF THE SENATE AND HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AND RECORDS OF THE PRESIDENT AND COUNCIL, FROM JUNE, 1790, TO JUNE, 1793,

 

WITH AN APPENDIX

 

 

CONTAINING THE JOURNAL OF THE SENATE ON THE IMPEACHMENT OF WOODBURY LANGDON, THE RECORDS OF THE NEW HAMPSHIRE SOCIETY OF THE CINCINNATI, AND BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCHES OF MEN WHO SUSTAINED IMPORTANT RELATIONS TO THE STATE GOVERNMENT DURING THE PERIOD COVERED BY THOSE RECORDS AND JOURNALS, TAKEN FROM THE MANUSCRIPT BIOGRAPHIES OF GOVERNOR WILLIAM PLUMER.

 

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VOLUME XXII.

 

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ALBERT STILLMAN BATCHELLOR,

EDITOR.

 

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CONCORD:

IRA C. EVANS, PUBLIC PRINTER.

1893.

 

 

 

 

JOINT RESOLUTION relating to the preservation and publication of portions of the early state and provincial records and other state papers of New Hampshire.

 

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court convened:

 

That His Excellency the Governor be hereby authorized and empowered, with the advice and consent of the Council, to employ some suitable person and fix his compensation, to be paid out of any money in the treasury not otherwise appropriated, to collect, arrange, transcribe, and superintend the publication of such portions of the early state and provincial records and other state papers of New Hampshire as the Governor may deem proper; and that eight hundred copies of each volume of the same be printed by the state printer, and distributed as follows namely, one copy to each city and town in the state, one copy to such of the pubュlic libraries of this state as the Governor may designate, fifty copies to the New Hampshire Historical Society, and the remainder placed in the custody of the state librarian, who is hereby authorized to exchange the same for similar publications by other states.

Approved August 4, 1881.

 

 

 

PREFACE.

 

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This volume is the third of the series which embodies the journals of the Senate and House of Representatives and the records of the President and Council from the beginning of the political year 1784-5 to the close of that of 1792-3. These nine years are recognized as an important epoch in the constitutional history of the state. The constitution of 1776 (State Papers, Vol. VIII, p. 2; Charters and Constitutions of the United States, by Ben: Perley Poore, 1878, Vol. II, p. 1279) was intended for a temporary purpose, and provided for little more than the establishment of a legislative government to serve a present emergency. It granted powers in the briefest and most general terms, and the idea of constitutional limitations had little promiュnence in it. Circumstances made this instrument, with the contemporary Federal compacts, the organic law of the state during the entire period of the revolutionary struggle.

The next successful attempt at constitution making in the state resulted in the adoption of the constitution of 1784. The government inaugurated in June of that year was the first under its provisions. Its framers doubtless availed themselves of the opportunity to examine the new constitutions of other states, then recently adopted. The forms and usages of government with which they had become familiar in the provincial and revolutionュary periods were preserved to a marked extent. The antipathies which had arisen out of the same experience naturally influenced the framers in respect to certain features of their work. This governmental structure, moreover, was enacted amid the uncertainties which overshadowed the constitution makers of that time,

 

 

 

 

iv PREFACE.

 

concerning the future of the Federal relations of the American states. Yet the people of the state have never found sufficient occasion for substituting another constitution for that of 1784 that is to say, that constitution has never given place to any new or independent state constitution. In fact, no new constitution has been submitted for the consideration of the people since 1783.

The courts, and some of those having to do with the revision of the laws of the state, from time to time, however, had fallen into the error of referring to the product of the constitutional convention of 1791-2 as the "Constitution of 1792"; Pierce v. State, 13 N. H. 536, 542; Baker v. Holderness, 26 N. H. 110, 114; Rich v. Flanders, 39 N. H. 375, 376; Copp v. Henniker, 55 N. H. 179, 191; Perュkins v. Scott, 57 N. H. 55, 57, 78; King v. Hopkins, 57 N. H. 346; Report of Commissioners for Revision of the Laws, 1878, p. 29, note; General Laws, p. 40, note; XX State Papers, p. 4. The publication of the journal of the convention of 1791-2, X State Papers, 23-196, has facilitated a review of the relations of the work of that convention to the constitution of 1784. In the opinions of the court by Allen, J., in State v. Saunders, 66 N. H. 39, 72, and by Carpenter, J., in State v. Griffin, appt. decided 1890, the historical fact is stated, and it is demonstrated by the record, that only amendments to the constitution of 1784 have been submitted and ratified or rejected since that date, and that the constitution in the form it assumed in 1792 was not subュmitted to the people or adopted by them in its entirety. The constitution of 1784 was amended in 1791-2, by the same process and by the same constitutional methods that prevailed in the amendments proposed by the conventions of 1850, 1876, and 1889.

For citations to acts of the legislature passed from time to time, which provided for taking the sense of the people as to calling conventions to provide for constitutional amendments and the popular votes thereon, see New Hampshire Manual, 1889, P. 66.

The amendments which took effect in 1793 were important and radical. By their operation the form of government was materi‑

 

 

 

 

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ally modified. This was particularly notable in the redistribution of powers among the three coordinate branches of government. The nine years of proceedings in the legislative and executive departments which constitute the material of the series of volumes of which this is the third, viz., volumes XX, XXI, and XXII, were prolific in experience and instruction to those who were first called to take part in devising amendments to the constitution of 1784. The legislative journals for the period from 1793 to the present time are accessible in the original printed form in several of the public libraries of this and other states. Their contents may be made available for practical use by the provisions for indexes which are contemplated by the act of Sept. 11, 1883, (Laws of 1883, p. 56), should the wise policy outlined in that legislation be continued. It has not been deemed advisable, for reasons above indicated, to continue the publication of this class of records further than to the end of the political year 1792-3, which is reached in this volume, bringing the work down to the beginning of what may be regarded as a distinct period in the constitutional history of the state.

The plan on which the work has been edited is that outlined in the prefaces to volumes XX and XXI. With the exception of references to the volumes of Town Papers, as related to the legisュlative journals, the presentation of illustrative biographies, notes and citations, official tables, and exhaustive indexes, is the same as in the preceding volumes. As in those volumes also, sections found enclosed in brackets indicate differences between the manュuscript journals and the official printed edition. The volume also contains the official record of the proceedings relating to the impeachment of Woodbury Langdon as a justice of the superior court, and the journal of the New Hampshire Society of the Cincinnati.

With the very complete indexes to the volumes of Town Papers and Miscellaneous Papers, so called, edited by Mr. Isaac W. Hammond, and the Index to the Laws, published by the state in 1886, the volumes of this series are submitted as a contribution

 

 

 

 

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to the material for the history of the American people and of popular institutions at a time which was of critical importance to the state and to the republic.

It is a pleasure to renew the expressions of obligation which are due to His Excellency Governor Smith, and the members of his Council, and other gentlemen in the service of the state, previously made, for active and generous cooperation in the work.

THE EDITOR.

 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS.

 

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State Officers, 1790-91 1-4

Senate Journal, June Session, 1790 5-31

Members of the House, 1790-91 35-39

House Journal, June Session, 1790 40-93

Senate Journal, January Session, 1791 95-137

House Journal, January Session, 1791 139-244

Records of President and Council, 1790-91 245-274

State Officers, 1791-92 275-278

Senate Journal, June Session, 1791 279-304

Members of the House, 1791-92 307-312

House Journal, June Session, 1791 313-364

Senate Journal, November Session, 1791 365-399

House Journal, November Session, 1791 401-483

Records of President and Council, 1791-92 485-509

State Officers, 1792-93 511-513

Senate Journal, June Session, 1792 515-539

Members of the House, 1792-93 543-548

House Journal, June Session, 1792 549-599

Senate Journal, November Session, 1792 601-634

House Journal, November Session, 1792 635-714

Records of President and Council, 1792-93 715-744

 

APPENDIX.

 

Impeachment of Woodbury Langdon 747-756

Records of N. H. Society of the Cincinnati 757-820

Biographical Sketches 821-864

 

 

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