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Proceedings and Debates of the 1867 Constitutional Convention
Volume 74, Volume 1, Debates 34   View pdf image (33K)
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The Convention met in the city of Annapolis on May 8,
1867. It was in session for 75 days, extending over a
period of three months, exclusive of a ten days' recess.
In an editorial praising the work of the Convention, The
Sun gave the following resume. of its achievements:
Among the important features which have
heretofore had no place in our organic law are:
The provision inserted in the legislative article
"that no person shall be deemed incompetent as
a witness on account of race or color, except
hereafter so declared by act of the General As-
sembly; " the absence of any religious test ex-
cept belief in the existence of God, moral accoun-
tability to Him, and a condition of reward or
punishment in this or the world to come, in the
qualifications for witnesses, jurors or the hold-
ing of office, and the prohibition against retro-
spective or expurgatorial oaths of any nature
whatever. These desirable improvements are
due to that enlightened state of public senti-
ment happily prevailing amongst the majority
of the people of this State. In the Declaration
of Rights the following important, and, in view
of the occurrences of the past few years, emi-
nently proper clause is inserted:
"Art. 44. That the provisions of the Constitution of
the United States and of this State apply as well in time
of war as in time of peace, and any departure therefrom
or violation thereof, under the plea of necessity, or any
other plea, is subversive of good government, and tends
to anarchy and despotism. "
As as necessary sequence to this section, it is
further provided that under no circumstances
shall the Legislature of this State pass any law
suspending the privilege of the writ of habeas
corpus. On the subject of slavery, the Conven-
tion, fully recognizing its destruction, has in-
serted in the Declaration of Rights the follow-
ing article:
"Slavery shall not be re-established in this
State, but having been abolished under the pol-

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Proceedings and Debates of the 1867 Constitutional Convention
Volume 74, Volume 1, Debates 34   View pdf image (33K)
 Jump to  

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