Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia

Passed at the Session Commencing December 6, 1847, and ending April 5, 1848

In the Seventy - Second Year of the Commonwealth.

Chap. 60. - An ACT establishing the county of Wirt of part of the counties of Wood and Jackson.

[Passed January 19, 1848.]

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, That so much of the counties of Wood and Jackson as is contained within the following boundary lines, to wit: Beginning where the Ritchie county line crosses Goose creek; and thence a straight line to the mouth of Hughes’ river; thence down the Little Kanawha river to the mouth of Dailey’s run; thence a straight line to the head of the Buckeye fork of Sandy creek, near John Stephens, junior; thence with and along the top of the dividing, ridge between Sandy and Tucker’s creeks, and Sandy and Reedy creeks, to the Jackson trace road, where the same crosses said dividing ridge; and thence, running with and along said road to, including the residence of John P. Thomasson in Jackson county; and thence continuing with and along said road to and including the residence of William Goff on Spring creek; thence to the head of Triplett’s run on the Gilmer county line; thence, running with and along said Gilmer and Ritchie county line, to the place of beginning, shall form one distinct and new county, and be called and known by the name of Wirt county.

2. The governor shall commission as justices of the peace for the said new county all the justices of the peace now in commission in the counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, whose dwelling houses shall be included within the boundaries of the said new county of Wirt, after the commencement of this act; and they shall be commissioned, in point of seniority, according to the dates of their present commissions, respectively; all of whom shall (before entering upon or exercising any of the duties of said office) take the several oaths and within the time now required by law of persons commissioned as justices of the peace; which oaths may be administered by any justice of the peace remaining in commission in either of the counties of Wood or Jackson; and the justice or justices who may administer such oaths, shall grant a certificate of the fact from under his or their hand and seal of office, and which certificate shall be by the justices so qualified delivered to the clerk of the county court of Wirt county, who shall record the same in his office, and preserve the original therein: Provided, That nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to prevent any justice of the peace now in commission for either of the counties of Wood or Jackson, and residing within the boundary of the new county of Wirt, from exercising the duties of his office, as and for the said counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, until the organization of the said county of Wirt, on the fourth Monday in May next, as hereinafter prescribed.

3. A court for the county of Wirt shall be holden by the justices thereof, on the fourth Monday in each and every month after the same shall have been organized, in like manner as is provided by law for other counties of this commonwealth, and as shall be by law and their commissions directed.

4. The permanent place for holding the courts in the county of Wirt now required by law to be holden for the several counties of this commonwealth, shall be at Elizabethtown on the Little Kanawha river, in the now county of Wood. And the county court of Wirt county shall provide a lot or lots of land at said place, not exceeding two acres, (unless more be furnished by donation, in which case the justices of said county may take and hold the same, provided such donation shall not exceed five acres, and a full and satisfactory title, as herein required, can and shall be made thereto,) upon which to erect a courthouse, and such necessary public buildings and fixtures as the convenience of the county requires under existing laws, for holding courts and conducting business incident thereto, in the manner now required by law, "where land shall not be already provided and appropriated for that purpose." And said court shall cause said buildings and fixtures to be constructed at the charge of the county of Wirt, by levy, in the manner now prescribed by law. The title to any such land, purchased as aforesaid for valuable consideration, or furnished in free gift, (as the case may be,) shall be made in fee simple, to any four or more justices of the peace for the said county of Wirt, and their successors in office, in trust for the use and benefit of said county.

5. The justices of the peace commissioned and qualified as aforesaid, for the county of Wirt, shall meet at the house now the residence of Alfred Beauchamp in the county of Wood, situate in Elizabethtown, on the fourth Monday in May next. The whole number of said justices, commissioned and qualified as aforesaid, having been summoned by the acting sheriff or his deputy of the now county of Wood, to attend on that day; and it is hereby made the duty of said sheriff of the now county of Wood aforesaid, to summon said justices to attend as aforesaid, at least ten days before the time of meeting fixed as aforesaid, under the penalty of forfeiture, and paying not less than fifty dollars, for the benefit of the Literary fund, recoverable as other fines imposed by law on sheriffs and their deputies for similar omissions of duty. And two thirds of the said justices being present, (otherwise those who do attend may adjourn from day to day, or from time to time, until a majority shall be present,) shall proceed to appoint a clerk of the county court, a commissioner of the revenue, and a surveyor for the said county of Wirt; and also at the same time, the necessary number of school commissioners for the said new county, or at some early day thereafter, if at that time the said justices shall not be sufficiently informed so as to make advisedly a judicious and proper appointment as to such school commissioners. The said justices shall also at the same time nominate to the governor suitable persons to be commissioned as sheriff and coroner for the said new county, and fix upon such place and some suitable house in said county, as may seem most convenient for holding the courts thereof, until the necessary public buildings shall be constructed at Elizabethtown, on the Little Kanawha river, as aforesaid. And said justices shall cause all of the said appointments, orders and proceedings, made and had as aforesaid, to be entered of record.

6. It shall be lawful for the sheriff or other collector lawfully appointed, of the counties of Wood and Jackson, severally, to collect by distress or other lawful mode, any public dues or officer’s fees which may remain unpaid by such of the inhabitants of the said counties, respectively, as will be included within the boundary of the said county of Wirt, at the time when this act shall commence and be in force; and such sheriff or other collector shall be accountable for the same in like manner, and under the same fines, forfeitures and penalties, as if this act had never passed.

7. The courts of the counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, shall have and retain jurisdiction of all actions and suits depending before them on the fourth Monday in May next, and shall try and determine the same, and award execution thereon when necessary, except in cases in which both parties reside within the new county, which last mentioned cases (together with the papers thereto appertaining,) shall after that day be removed to the courts of the county of Wirt, and there tried and determined as other cases.

8. The said county of Wirt shall be in and attached to the same judicial circuit with the county of Wood; and the circuit superior courts of law and chancery thereof, shall be holden on the tenth day of March, and on the twelfth day of August in every year; and shall be in the same militia brigade district with the county of Wood; and shall be in the same congressional district, and the same electoral district, (for choosing electors for president and vice-president of the United States,) with the county of Wood.

9. The courts of quarterly sessions for the said county of Wirt, shall be holden in the months of February, May, July and October, in every year.

10. The boundary lines of the said new county, as described and established by this act, shall be run and marked in the manner prescribed by the act, entitled "an act for making more effectual provision for running and marking the boundaries of new counties," passed on the eleventh day of February in the year one thousand eight hundred and forty-five.

11. In the election of members of the senate and house of delegates, that portion of the said county of Wirt, which shall be taken from the county of Wood, shall vote with the county of Wood, and that portion of the said county of Wirt, which shall be taken from the county of Jackson, shall vote with the county of Jackson, in the same manner they are now authorized to vote, until a reapportionment of the representation shall take place, or until otherwise ordered by the said general assembly. And all separate elections heretofore authorized to be holden in and for the counties of Wood and Jackson, and falling within the boundary of the new county of Wirt, shall be conducted for the said new county, in the same manner as heretofore for the counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, until it shall be ascertained whether either or any such are unnecessary for the said new county; and upon that fact being represented to the general assembly, upon notice given in the manner required for establishing a separate election, may be discontinued. It shall the duty of the county court of Wirt at its first term, or as soon as convenient or necessary, to appoint as many persons as may be requisite to perform the duties of sheriff at the several places of holding separate elections in said county of Wirt, and who shall attend at the courthouses of Wood and Jackson, to compare the polls and to perform such other duties as are required by law of sheriffs and their deputies in that behalf, and who shall be liable to the same penalties as are now imposed by law on sheriffs and their deputies for failing or refusing to hold separate elections, or other omissions of duty in that behalf. And the said court shall also appoint as many superintendents of election as are required by law, for the polls to be taken at the courthouse and other places of voting in said new county of Wirt. The persons hereby required to be appointed to attend and compare the polls, shall take with them fair copies of all the original polls taken in said county of Wirt.

12. And be it further enacted, That the treasurer of the school commissioners of each of the counties of Wood and Jackson, shall be and he is hereby authorized and required to pay to the treasurer of the school commissioners of the new county of Wirt, upon the order of the school commissioners of said new county, out of the fixed and surplus quotas of the school fund of the said counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, for the present fiscal year, (ending in eighteen hundred and forty-eight,) such sum as shall seem to them, respectively, to be in due proportion to the population of the said Wirt county, taken from that of the said counties of Wood and Jackson, respectively, including any balance remaining unexpended; as also of the due proportion as aforesaid, accruing from such quotas to which Wood and Jackson counties, or either of them, are or may be entitled for any former year. And it shall be the duty of the second auditor to reapportion the fixed and surplus school quotas of the counties of Wood and Jackson, for the next fiscal year and subsequent years, between the said counties of Wood, Jackson and Wirt, agreeably to their respective number of white tithables which may be returned therein by the commissioners of the revenue for the present year, eighteen hundred and forty-eight.

13. And be it further enacted, That the county court of Wirt county, all of the acting justices of the said county having been summoned for the purpose, and a majority thereof actually present, shall have power to borrow, on the credit of the county, upon such terms as the said court may think fit, a sum of money, not exceeding five thousand dollars, for the purpose of erecting the courthouse and other public buildings for the said county of Wirt. And it shall be the duty of the said court to lay a sufficient levy for the payment of the money so borrowed, with the interest that may accrue thereon, at the time at which the same may be made payable.

14. This act shall commence and be in force from and after the passing thereof.

 


 

Chap. 77. – An ACT changing the times of holding the circuit superior courts of law and chancery for the counties of Doddridge, Tyler, Wetzell, Brooke, Hancock and Ohio, and the first term of the circuit court and the county court of the county of Wirt.

[Passed March 14, 1848.]

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, That the circuit superior courts of law and chancery for the counties of Doddridge, Tyler, Wetzell, Brooke, Hancock and Ohio, shall be held a the time hereinafter mentioned, instead of the times now required by law, that is to say: The county of Doddridge on the fifth day of May and the fifth day of October; the county of Tyler on the eleventh day of May and the eleventh day of October; the county of Wetzell on the seventeenth day of May and the seventeenth day of October; the county of Brooke on the twenty-fourth day of May and the twenty-fourth day of October; the county of Hancock on the first day of June and the first day of November, and the county of Ohio on the fifth day of June and the fifth day of November.

2. Be it further enacted, That the first term of the circuit court of the county of Wirt shall be held on the eighth day of April next; and the county courts of said county shall be held on the first Tuesday after the fourth Monday in each month, instead of the time now fixed by law.

3. Be it further enacted, That nothing herein contained shall operate to discontinue or invalidate any process issued, or recognizance taken or notice given before the commencement of this act; but every such process, recognizance and notice given, taken or returnable to any term of the courts aforesaid, which, as the law now is, would have occurred after the commencement of this act, shall be construed and held, and shall in like manner avail as if given, taken or returnable to the terms substituted therefor by the provisions of this act.

4. This act shall be in force from the passing thereof.

 


 

Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia

Passed at the Session Commencing December 4, 1848, and ending March 19, 1849

In the Seventy - Third Year of the Commonwealth.

Chap. - 58. - An ACT authorizing a separate election at the house of John Coe, in the town of Palestine, in the county of Wirt.

[Passed January 10, 1849.]

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, That whenever hereafter an election shall be holden in the county of Wirt, in which all the lawful voters of the county are required to vote, there shall be, at the same time, a separate poll opened and held for such election, at the house now the residence of John Coe, in the town of Palestine in said county.

2. This act shall be in force from the passing thereof.

 


 

Chap. 67. — An ACT providing for taking the sense of the citizens of Wirt county upon the selection of a site for the seat of justice thereof.

[Passed February 27, 1849.]

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, That it shall be the duty of the sheriff, other officers and superintendents conducting elections in the county of Wirt, at the several places for holding elections in said county for a delegate to the general assembly, at the time of taking the poll for next annual election of such delegate to open a separate poll for the purpose of ascertaining the sense of the people as to which point or place a majority of them prefer as the permanent site for the seat of justice for said county. The said poll shall two columns, one headed "For Elizabethtown," on the Little Kanawha river, the present seat of justice for said county, the other shall be headed "For the town of Palestine," situate at the Reedy Ripple, and the names of the voters shall be written in that column headed with the name of the place voted for. The sheriff, other officers and superintendents conducting the election at the several places of voting, shall poll and so enter the vote of every person claiming the right to vote, who is qualified according to the constitution and laws of this commonwealth to vote for a delegate to the general assembly: Provided, That such voter shall actually reside within the limits of the said county of Wirt, and not otherwise; and shall also poll and so enter the vote of every white male citizen of said county of the age of twenty-one years and upwards, who hath resided in said county for and during one whole year continuously, next before the said election, and who also was assessed with a part (his due portion) of the county levy for the said preceding year, (or at the last assessment of the county levy,) and has actually paid the same: Provided, That any such voter does not labour under any legal or constitutional disability, and shall make oath to his qualification to vote, if required to do so. And the said officers and others concerned in conducting the said election, shall keep the said poll opened for the space of three days.

2. Be it further enacted, That the sheriff, other officers and superintendents, conducting said poll at the time and place aforesaid, shall proceed with, certify and return the same to the clerk of the county court of the said new county of Wirt, in the same manner in all respects as they are required by law to proceed with, certify and return the poll taken by them for a delegate to the general assembly, and shall be liable to the same or like penalties for similar failures or neglect, as therein provided against.

3. Be it further enacted, That Henry H. Phelps, of the county of Wood; Hugh Kyger, of the county of Jackson; William L. Jackson, of the county of Ritchie; James H. French, of the county of Gilmer, and Albert G. Stringer, of the county of Wirt, shall be, and they are hereby appointed commissioners, any three of whom may act, whose duty it shall be to meet at the clerk's office of the county court of Wirt county, not less than ten nor more than twenty days after the closing of said polls, and then and there, in the presence of each other and the acting sheriff of the county, the clerk of the county court and the commissioner of the revenue for the said county of Wirt, all acting together, (or a majority of the said commissioners, being at least three of them, with the said clerk of the court, and the said sheriff or commissioner of the revenue,) shall proceed to examine, scrutinize and to purge and correct the polls hereby required to be taken on the subject of fixing a site for the seat of justice for said county of Wirt, and which shall be produced to them by the clerk of the county court of said county; and having stricken therefrom the names of all such persons, as in the opinion of a majority of them, (or a majority of such at least as shall constitute a board as above required, being five, unless the whole attend; then it shall require a majority of the whole number of said commissioners to decide any question that may arise,) are not entitled to vote according to the provisions of this act; and they shall make a fair copy of said poll so corrected, and verify the same by taking and subscribing before some justice of peace for said county of Wirt, an affidavit to the following effect, viz: "We, A B, C D, E F, & c. do hereby make oath (or affirm,) that we have carefully examined tke foregoing poll; that we have stricken therefrom no person's name, who, in the opinion of a majority of us, had a legal right to vote; and that the name of no one remains thereon, who, a majority of us concur in believing, is not entitled to vote according to the provisions of the act, entitled 'an act providing for taking the, sense of the citizens of Wirt county, upon the selection of a site for the seat of justice thereof, passed the _____ day of _____, eighteen hundred and _____ (this act.) Sworn to, and subscribed before me, G H, a justice of the peace for the county of Wirt, this _____ day of _____," & c. And it shall be the duty of said commissioners and officers, so examining and scrutinizing, to return the said corrected poll, so verified, to the clerk of the county court of said county of Wirt, to be by him preserved in his office; and if it shall appear to said commissioners and officers, from the poll so corrected, that a majority of the votes so taken are in favour of either of said places voted for, that fact shall be certified by them to the county court of said county of Wirt; whereupon such place so having a majority of votes, shall, to all intents and purposes, be the permanent place of holding courts for said county; and if such place, so having a majority of votes, be not the present county seat of justice, then it shall be the duty of the county court of said county, immediately to provide a lot or lots of land at such; place, not exceeding two acres, (unless more be furnished by donation; in which case the justices of said county may take and hold the same; provided such donation shall not exceed five acres, and a full and satisfactory title in fee, to the use of said county forever, can be made thereto;) and shall proceed to cause a courthouse and such other necessary public buildings and fixtures as the convenience of the county requires, under existing laws for holding courts and conducting business incident thereto, for said county of Wirt, to be erected on said land or lot, at such place. But if such place, so having a majority of votes, be the present appointed place for the seat of justice for said county, then the said county court shall proceed to cause such permanent public buildings and fixtures as the law requires as aforesaid, to be erected thereat, according to the authority and provisions of the act creating said county of Wirt, accepting in either case such donation of land or lots for the site, and other use of the courthouse and other public buildings; and also, such lots of land or the proceeds of the sale of such lots, (whether town lots or otherwise,) at either place as shall be determined by such vote, and upon such terms or conditions as the donor may have proposed: provided, the same shall be safe and convenient to the interests of said county, and a full and valid title in fee be made to any such donation.

4. Be it further enacted, That if at the close of the poll taken as aforesaid, it shall appear to said commissioners that an equal number of votes have been given to each of the two places voted for as above described, then they shall proceed to decide amongst themselves by vote, (each having one vote,) which of the two places described as aforesaid shall have the greatest number of votes; and a majority of said commissioners designated as aforesaid, omitting the sheriff, clerk and commissioner of the revenue, shall determine the question, and fix the said seat of justice accordingly.

5. Be it further enacted, That should any one or more of said five commissioners fail to attend and perform the duties herein required of him or them, by twelve o'clock of the Monday following the day of their meeting, then in that case it shall be lawful for those who do attend, to associate with themselves some person or persons of their choice, (in the place of any one or more of the five commissioners herein appointed in the beginning of the third section, other than the clerk, sheriff and commissioner of thp revenue, who cannot be substituted, but whose non-attendance is herein already provided for by taking either the one or the other of them, except the clerk of the court,) who shall proceed to perform all the duties of a commissioner for the purposes of this act, as though he was hereby appointed with the other commissioners. Each of said five commissioners, or their substitutes chosen as last aforesaid, shall receive three dollars per day for the time he is necessarily engaged in performing the duties required of him by this act, to be paid to him by the said county of Wirt, levied by the court thereof and collected for that purpose.

6. Be it further enacted, That the site heretofore selected for the seat of justice and location of the courthouse and other public buildings for the said county of Wirt, at Elizabethtown on the Little Kanawha river, in the then county of Wood, under the authority of the act creating said county of Wirt, shall be and the same is hereby declared to be null, void and of no effect, whenever a decision fixing the site for said courthouse permanently shall be had under the authority of this act, and particularly if the decision shall be in favour of a site for the same at the town of Palestine, situate at the Reedy Ripple aforesaid.

7. This act shall be in force from its passage.

 


 

Chap. 59. - An ACT to change the place of holding a separate election in the county of Wirt.

[Passed March 12, 1849.]

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, That the separate election heretofore authorized to be holden at the house of Thomas Tavenner in Elizabethtown in the then county of Wood, (now county of Wirt,) at the same place, and but a short distance from the courthouse thereof, shall be and the same is hereby discontinued, and in lieu thereof the usual election shall be holden at the courthouse of said county of Wirt, as required by law to be holden at the courthouse or place of holding courts of each and every county of this commonwealth.

2. This act shall be in force from its passage.

 


 

Chap. 60. - An ACT to authorize separate elections in the counties of Wirt, Bath, Fairfax and Wood.

[Passed March 13, 1849.]

1. Be in enacted by the general assembly, That whenever hereafter an election shall be holden in the county of Wirt, in which all the lawful voters of the county are required to vote, there shall be a the same time a separate poll opened and held for such election at the house now the residence of John F. Petty in said county.

...

 


 

Acts of the General Assembly of Virginia

Passed in 1852-3,

in the Seventy - Seventh Year of the Commonwealth.

CHAP. 151. — An ACT to annex to the county of Jackson a part of the county of Wirt.

Passed February 16, 1853.

1. Be it enacted by the general assembly, that so much of the county of Wirt as lies next to and adjoining the county of Jackson, and is contained within the following boundaries, viz: Beginning at the corner of Jackson, Wirt and Gilmer counties, and running with the line of Gilmer and Wirt to the Low gap at the head of Triplett's run; thence in a straight, line to M. D. W. Boggs', so as to include said Boggs; thence in a straight line to the lower end of D. P. Flesher's lane; thence in a straight line to the top of the ridge, between the right and left hand forks of Reedy creek, so as to include Cain's run; thence with the said ridge to the Jackson county line; thence wiih the said line to the place of beginning, shall be and the same is hereby annexed to and henceforth shall constitute a part of the county of Jackson.

2. It shall be lawful for the sheriff or other collector of the county of Wirt to collect by distress or other lawful mode, any public dues or officers' fees, or any unfinished business deriving its force or authority from orders of court, or other process in his hands, before the date of the passage of this act, which may remain unpaid by the inhabitants of that part of the county of Wirt which will be within and form a part of the county of Jackson when this act shall commence and be in force; and such sheriff or other collector shall he accountable for the same in like manner as if this act had not been passed.

3. This act shall be in force from its passage.

 


This page last modified 6 February 2002.