General Assembly of Virginia. [extra session.]

Tuesday, March 26, 1861.
The Senate was called to order at the usual hour--Mr. Johnson in the chair.

Virginia Canal Company.--Mr. Nelson, from the special committee to whom was referred House bill to incorporate the Virginia Canal Company, and to transfer the rights and franchises of the James River Company thereto, reported the same with sundry amendments. He announced his intention of calling up the bill at the earliest practicable moment.

The joint resolution of Mr. Pate, for a suspension of a judgment of the Richmond Circuit Court against certain parties in Logan county, was taken up, and after an explanation by Mr. Pate, it was rejected. The vote by which it was rejected was subsequently reconsidered, and the resolution tabled.

Night Sessions.--Mr. Day offered a resolution providing for night (as well as day) sessions of the Senate hereafter.

Mr. Thomas, of Fairfax, moved to lay the resolution on the table.

Ayes and noes demanded — ayes 15, noes 15. Refused to lay on the table.

Mr. Thomas, of F., then moved to amend by giving it effect on and after Thursday.

Mr. Brannon moved the indefinite postponement. His experience was against the propriety of night sessions. Ayes 17, noes 11.--indefinitely postponed.

Mr. Marshall proposed that the Senate will take a recess from 2 until 4 o'clock P. M., for the remainder of the session.

Mr. Brannon moved to indefinitely postpone. Ayes and noes demanded — aves 19, noes 15. Postponed.

Unfinished Business.--The resolution of Mr. Coghill, for a suspension of appropriations to internal improvements, which was under consideration when the Senate adjourned yesterday, coming up as unfinished business.

On motion of Mr. Paxton, it was laid on the table.

Amendment to the Constitution.--Mr. Stuart offered the following:

Resolved. That the message of the Governor, communicating to the General Assembly the proposed amendment of the Constitution of the United States, which was submitted by the late Congress to the States for ratification or rejection, be referred to the Committee of Courts of Justice, with instructions to inquire into the expediency of ratifying or rejecting the same; and in the event that they are of opinion, that it should be ratified, then to report a suitable form of ratification.

Mr. Nelson moved to lay the resolution on the table. Yeas and nays demanded, and recorded as follows:

‘ Yeas--Messrs. August, Brannon, Bruce, Carson, Claiborne, Coghill, Day, Dickenson of Grayson, Finly, Finney, Greever, Logan, Lynch, Nash, Neason, Newlon, Paxton, Quesenberry, Smith, Thompson, and Urquhart--21.

Nays,--Messrs. Carraway, Carter, Christian, Hubbard, Johnson, Marshall, McKenney, Newman, Pate, Stuart, Thomas of Fairfax, and Townes--12.

The Tax Bill Passed.--On motion, the order of the day was passed by, and the bill imposing taxes for the support of government taken up for consideration.

Mr. Thomas, of Fairfax, withdrew his proposition to strike out forty cents and insert fifty.

Mr. Brannon proposed an unimportant amendment to the general provisions of the bill, which was adopted.

After a few amendments, the bill having been perfected, a vote was at last taken on the bill. Only two votes were recorded against the bill--Messrs. August and McKenney.

Ordnance Department.--The President laid before the Senate a communication from the Executive, as follows:

Executive Department,March 26, 1861 Gentleman of the Senate:
I nominate, and by and with the advice and consent of your honorable body hereby appoint, Captain Charles Dimmock, Colonel of Ordnance; Briscoe G. Baldwin. Captain of Ordnance; and P. G. Coohlan, Clerk, with the rank of Captain — in pursuance of an act of the General Assembly, entitled "an act to incorporate an Ordnance Department, " passed January 25th, 1861. The act provides for a large number of officers, but I believe these will be found sufficient to secure the objects designed to be effected by the passage of the law.

In nominating Captain Dimmock, I take the occasion to say, it is understood between us that he is to retain the command of the Public Guard, and to discharge the duties of Colonel of Ordnance, receiving for the performance of the duties of both positions, only the pay attached to the higher rank. The pay of a Colonel of Ordnance in the United States service, on the 1st day ofJanuary, 1850, was $2,554.67, exclusive of forage for horses. The pay and allowances of Captain Dimmock, as Commandant of the Public Guard, exclusive of quarters, is $1,688.91.

By the arrangement proposed, a Colonel of Ordnance and a Commandant of the Public Guard will be secured for the sum of $2,554.67. If separated, the expense to the State will be $4,243.61 annually. The plan proposed will save $1,688.94 per year — an item, in the present condition of our finances, of sufficient consideration to claim attention.

Bills Passed.--House bill changing the names of the Lunatic Asylums; House bill authorizing the Trustees of the Methodist District Parsonage in the town of Salem to borrow money, and execute a deed of trust to secure the same; House bill incorporating the Little Kanawha Mining and Manufacturing Company.

Bill Rejected.--The bill to suspend the levying of taxes by the State on the Wheeling and Belmont Bridge Company for six years, was rejected. The vote was subsequently reconsidered, and the bill tabled.

Rechartering Banks.--The Senate then proceeded to the consideration of the various bills on the table for rechartering the Banks of the Commonwealth, when the following were passed: An act to amend the charter of the Bank of Charleston; an act to extend the charter of the Bank of Virginia; an act to extend the charter of the Farmers' Bank of Virginia; an act to extend the charter of the Bank of the Valley of Virginia; an act to extend the charter of the Exchange Bank of Virginia; an act to extend the charter of the Merchants' and Mechanics' Bank of Wheeling; an act to extend the charter of the Northwestern Bank of Virginia; an act to extend the charter of the Central Bank of Virginia.

Voluntary Enslavement.--House bill providing for the voluntary enslavement of free negroes without compensation, one of the special orders of the day, was taken up, when Mr. Paxton proposed to amend by imposing a tax of -- on the master chosen when the negro was under 40 years of age, and -- when over that age, to be collected and paid into the Treasury by the Clerk of the Court.

The proposition caused some discussion, in which Messrs. Stuart and August opposed the bill, and Messrs. Early, Bruce and Coghill argued in its favor.

The amendment of Mr. Paxton coming up, the yeas and nays were demanded — yeas 13, nays 15.

An unsuccessful motion to adjourn was made.

Mr. Newlon offered an amendment which was rejected, without coming to a vote on the bill.

On motion, the Senate adjourned.

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