House of Delegates.
met at 12 o'clock M., Mr. Collier
, or Petersburg
, in the Chair.
Prayer by Rev. Dr. Moore
agreed to the Senate's amendment to the bill constituting New River
a lawful fence; also to the joint resolutions passed by the Senate relative to the defence of Western Virginia
, and avowing the determination of the Commonwealth
to retain its jurisdiction over that section.
A bill for the relief of John Otis
, late jailor of Jefferson county
, was reported from the Committee
, of Botetourt
, from the Committee
on Military Affairs, reported the following bill.
"An act to amend and re-enact an ordinance to provide for the enrollment and employment of free negroes in the public service, passed by the Convention
July 1, 1861."
, from the Committee
on Finance, reported a bill to authorize the transfer of certain bonds of the State
held in trust by the Government
of the United States
for certain Indian tribes, and providing for the payment of interest thereon.
Also, an adverse report as to the expediency of refunding to Rudu and Gresham
, of Chesterfield county
, a license tax.
Also, an adverse report as to the expediency of refunding damages paid by sureties of R. W. Gill
's joint resolutions, enlogizing the Virginia Volunteers, and inviting them to re-enlist for the war, (having been slightly modified,) were read by the Clerk
, and the same adopted.
On motion of Mr. Buford
, the bill providing for the construction of a railroad connection between the Orange
and Manassas Gap Railroads and the Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Potomac Railroad was taken up.
strongly urged the passage of the bill as a means for properly defending our military lines on the Potomac
It was then passed without opposition.
The following resolutions of inquiry were referred to the appropriate committees:
By Mr. Baker
: Of so amending the criminal laws of the Commonwealth
as to provide for the punishment of slaves and free negroes for offences which, if committed by a white person, would be treason, or of a treasonable and disloyal character.
By Mr. Ward
: Of so amending the existing law as to provide that fiduciaries shall not forfeit their commissions for failure to settle their accounts within the time now required by law.
By Mr. Sheffey
: Of amending the 52d, 53d, and 54th sections of chapter 61 of the Code of 1860.
One o'clock having arrived, the House
took up the order of the day, which was the bill providing for filling the vacancies in the Senate from the 45th and 80th districts.
The bill underwent several amendments.
On motion of Mr. Baskerville
, the bill, with pending amendments, was laid on the table.
then moved to take up the resolutions (laid on the table some days ago) providing for the House
to proceed to the filling of vacancies in its own body, caused by the occupation of a part of the Commonwealth
by the public enemy, which was carried.
After the Clerk
had read the resolutions, Mr. Harrison
moved that they be postponed indefinitely.
A long discussion ensued.
argued that the late Convention had the right to provide for the filling of vacancies in the House
He was of the opinion, however, that no exigency had yet arrived to justify the House
to avail itself of the privilege.
He was followed by Messrs. Grattan
, and Rives
, in opposition to the proposed action of the Legislature, and Messrs. Anderson
, and Burks
, in favor of filling the vacancies from Western Virginia
Without taking a vote the House
, on motion of Mr. Baskerville