By the Governor of Virginia.

--A Proclamation.--The General Assembly of Virginia having, on the 20th instant, passed an act amendatory of the act passed October 27, 1863, entitled "An act to authorize the arrest of deserters by the civil authorities, and having directed the same to be published by proclamation of the Governor. Therefore, I, William Smith, Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia, do hereby proclaim that the annexed is a true copy of the act aforesaid; and all officers affected by its provisions are required promptly and efficiently to execute the same, and the people generally are called upon to reader willing obedience to its provisions.

Given under my hand as Governor, and under the seal of the Commonwealth, at Richmond, this 21st day of January, 1864, and in the 88th year of the Commonwealth.

William Smith.
By the Governor:
George W Munford,
Secretary of the Commonwealth.

an act, amendatory of the act passed October 27, 1863, entitled an act to authorize the arrest of deserters by the civil authorities. Passed Jan. 20, 1864.

  1. 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly, That the first, second and third sections of the act passed October the twenty seventh, eighteen hundred and sixty-three, entitled an act to authorize, the arrest of deserters by the civil authorities, be amended and re-enacted so as to read as follows: That all magistrates, sheriffs, sergeants, and constables, of the several counties and towns in this Commonwealth be required to inform the nearest Confederate officer of all deserters and other delinquents owing military service to the Confederate Government, who may be found in their respective counties, cities, or towns and to arrest and aid in the arrest of all such delinquents, whether deserters, conscripts, or absentees without leave from the army or navy of the Confederate States. And they shall promptly notify the nearest Confederate officer, as Adjutant General, or the secretary of War, of such arrest, and shall commit such deserter or other delinquent to some secure county or corporation jail and be can be delivered to the Confederate authorities.
  2. 2. The said officers may summon so many of the people of their county or corporation, or require the nearest commissioned officer of State forces to call out such portion of his command as may he sufficient for the purpose, to aid in arresting and safely guarding such delinquents until they can be secured in jail as aforesaid. And in making any arrest herein directed, the officers, whether civil or military, shall have the same powers and jurisdiction conferred in the 24th section, chapter 49, of the Code.
  3. 3. If any officer shall willfully fall or refuse to perform any duty herein required of him, and any citizen who said fail or refuse to obey the summons provided for in the second section, or shall refuse, when called on by any officer authorized to arrest deserters and other military delinquents, to assist in making any arrest, or in securing and safely keeping any prisoner after his arrest, such officer or citizen shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and, on conviction thereof, shall be fined by the jury not less than fifty nor more than five hundred dollars, and shall be imprisoned in the county or corporation jail not less than two nor more than six months; but if any such jail shall, for any cause, be insecure as a place of confinement, he shall be removed to the nearest county or corporation jail that may be deemed safe, upon the order of the Court, or presiding justice of the Court, in which he was convicted.
  4. Be a further enacted, That to facilitate the arrest and return of deserters and other delinquents from the Army and Navy of the Confederate States, it shall be the duty of the presiding Justice of any county, city, or town, whenever thereto requested by the Governor of the State, the Secretary of War of the Confederate States, or the Commanding General of the District or Department, and also when reliable information shall be brought to him that there are deserters or other delinquents, as aforesaid, lurking about or passing through his county, city, or town, to convene immediately two other magistrates to act with him, and shall detail from the body of the county a sufficient patrol, under charge of an officer to be appointed by said Court, who shall be required diligently to patrol and make search for deserters and other delinquents, and to arrest and dispose of the same as herein before prescribed. And the officer of said patrol shall have all the power conferred in the first and second sections of this act. The Court herein mentioned may meet at any convenient and safe point designated by the presiding Justice.
  5. 5. The orders of said Court shall be certified by the presiding Justice to the Clerk of the County or Corporation Court when the same shall not be held at the Court house thereof, and shall be issued and executed as other orders of the Court.
  6. 6. Any willful neglect or refusal to perform the duties prescribed in the last two preceding sections shall be deemed a misdemeanor, and subject the offender to the pains and penalties mentioned in the third section of this act.
  7. 7. This act shall be specially given in charge to all grand juries, and shall immediately after its passage be published by proclamation of the Governor.
  8. 8. This act shall be in force from its passage.
    A copy from the rolls — Teste:
Wm. F. Gordon, Jr,
C. H. D. and K. of R. ja 22--sw3t

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