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pages. One of these makes an endeavor on a large tempt is made at the destruction of the Russian scale to do away with the trouble, acerbities and ex thistle and other noxious weeds. The doctrine of pense of legal controversy over small matters by Munn v. Illinois is vigorously asserted by an act reproviding for the election, concurrently with jus- lating to elevators and warehouses. tices of the peace, of four commissioners of concilia The effect of rigorous attempts to tax personal tion, in all towns, villages and cities, whose benefi- property are strikingly manifested by an act percent services may be called into play on the consent mitting county treasurers at any time after the of both the contending parties at any time after the taxes upon personalty have become due, if they issue and before the return-day of the summons in have reason to believe that the person against whom any civil action before a justice of the piece, they have been assessed is about to remove himself North Dakota has also provided herself with a
or his chattels from the county, to immediately new suit of codes, but, by express provision, they seize and sell sufficient personal property to pay the are not printed with the other acts of the session
tax. Something is wrong in Denmark when the and I have not been oble to obtain them.
inhabitants of a taxed district seek to leave it to Cigarette smoking is subjected to severe restric- escape the taxes. tions. No one is permitted to sell, give away or use
NORTH CAROLINA. any cigarette containing any substance “foreign to
A numerous array of acts is exbibited in this tobacco," and deleterious to health. This intimation year's volume of the laws of North Carolina. The that tobacco is not regarded as seriously deleterious
most noteworthy which I have observed among to health has a comforting tendency. The selling them are two, one dealing with the subject of taxaor giving to persons under seventeen years of age tion and the other with that of elections. The of cigarettes, cigars or tobacco of any kind is also
former nearly exhausts human ingenuity in conpunished; but the boys themselves may smoke ad triving as many different forms of taxation as poslibitum, if they can procure, as they probably will,
sible, instead of seeking to make them as few and the cigars and cigarettes containing no substance simple as possible. Property is taxed, incomes are foreign to tobacco.
taxed, licenses in multiplied forms are required for On second thought the Legislature seems to bave carrying on occupations. This formidable machinconcluded that it might be somewhat difficult to ery involves the creation of nineteen distinct penal prove the composition of a cigarette after it had offenses. That such a complicated system can be been smoked, and the next act passed by it is one operated with efficiency, barmony and justice seems absolutely prohibiting the sale of cigarettes “of impossible. any kind or form."
The election law seem to be an elaborate revision The humane dispositions are gratified by an act and amendment of the prior law, but I do not disfor the prevention of cruelty to animals. It is not cover in it any novel features of interest to other surprising to find that the chief products of a State communities. find protection in its legislation, and that where
OREGON. dairies abound the substitutes for butter and cheese
A contest for the election of a United States should not be allowed to be palmed off for those Senator so far occupied the attention of the Legisarticles. Still it seems fair that the makers of these lature as to leave comparatively little time for atsubstitutes, provided they are wholesome, should be tention to other public business. allowed the common privilege of naming their wares, A quite novel piece of legislation is shown in an if they do not ususp names appropriated to other act giving the right to take lands for the constructhings. But North Dakota compels the manufac- tion of railroads, skid roads, tramways, chutes and turer of a substitute for butter to stamp upon the flumes for the purpose of transporting Jumber and packages “Patent Butter,” a name perhaps which other products, the facilities thus provided being he would not himself prefer; and whoever sells sub deelared to be for the public use. All persons can stitutes for the historic butter or cheese must furnish
use them upon paying reasonable compensation. the purchaser with a card stating correctly the dif- The public necessity declared by the act as the ferent ingredients of the article, a requirement justification of such legislation and of its immediate which the vendors of compound substances are not operation, is that of speedily developing the mineral usually subjected to.
and other material resources of the State-a rather The advancing civilization of this State is mani liberal application of the right of eminent domain. fested in several acts for the promotion of comfort A policy adopted by several other States during and decency in and about school-houses, the pre- the past year is followed in the establishment of vention of the circulation of obscene literature, and irrigation and dyke districts for irrigating lands in the creation of a Historical Commission. An at some places and securing against overflows in
others. These districts are authorized to assess ination and license. The patriotic movement against upon the inhabitants the expense of the works con the display of foreign flags on public buildings was structed, but lands not needing irrigation cannot be seconded by legislation for that purpose. The adincluded against the will of the owners.
vantage which fire insurers are supposed to enjoy in The practice of medicine and surgery is regulated dictating the form of their engagements was done in a manner similar to that adopted this year in away with by an act prescribing the form of policies, several other States, by requiring licenses from a and a step in the right direction was taken by an board of experts after examination. Three schools act providing for the construction of public roads are recognized, regulars, eclectics, and homæ- in certain cases by the State. pathists. A rather large demand is made on the
SOUTH CAROLINA. Oregon Railway and Navigation Company by an act providing that when any person or company any The violent politieal dissensions in this State do where between certain designated points on the not appear to have left any conspicuous märk upon Columbia River shall build and grade a side track, its legislation at the last session, unless it be in the it shall furnish iron for the track, and cars for the provisions of the act providing for a constitutional transportion of freight, and maximum rates of convention and a registration of voters to that end. freight between those points are fixed by the act. The latter has been declared unconstitutional by the The only security which the Company has for re United States Circuit Court. imbursement or compensation for laying down rails The most noteworthy permanent legislation is an and furnishing and running cars, is the probability act rigorously forbidding in any form, direct or inthat no one will construct and grade a track except direct, the consolidation of competing lines of where there is a prospect of a considerable amount railroad. of transportation. It would appear however that if A patriotic interest in the history of the State is the Legislature can compel a railway company to evidenced by an act creating a commission for the do this, it might also compel one to extend its line purpose of collecting and publishing matters of beyond the termini mentioned in the charter. interest connected with such history.
South DAKOTA. This great Commonwealth has distinguished itself This State establishes a State Board of Health by rejecting much proposed legislation of a novel with extensive powers; amends her tax laws with character, and called communistic by those who do the determined purpose, common to so many States not approve of it.
and equally sure to be defeated, of taxing everyIt has exhibited exceptional liberality towards thing which passes under the name of personal institutions for the higher education, bestowing property, and insists upon taxing many things of upon the University of Pennsylvania the sum of this sort twice by taxing all credits, so that if one $200,000.
of two men who are worth, each, one tbousaud dolIt has recognized the sad neglect which has lars in money and other personal property, lends hitherto been shown in relation to a great public five hundred to the other and takes the note of the interest by enacting a general forestry law, making latter for it, the transaction adds five hundred dolprovision for the preservation of forests from which
lars to the taxable property of the State! She much good may be expected.
yields to the universal movement inaugurated, I It has made a probably useful change in the law should guess, by guaranty companies, allowing such of evidence by permitting the comparison of genuine companies to become sureties on official bonds; with alleged simulated signatures; prohibited the
creates the office of county examiner to examine wearing in any public school by any teacher of any
the books, accounts and funds of the treasurer of religious garb, badge or symbol, and greatly en each township in the county. This is one of the larged the powers of bank examiners.
arid States and provision is made for the sinking of
artesian wells at the public expense for irrigation RHODE ISLAND.
and other purposes.
The ancient institution of Several pieces of wisely suggested legislation have the grand jury is boldly dispensed with in all been enacted in this State.
cases unless the judge of the Criminal Court directs An odious exception from the penal law which one to be summoned. The substitute is an informapermitted the practice of betting on horse races, tion filed by the legal representative of the State where the track was owned by an incorporated agri- against persons supposed to be guilty of crimes. cultural society, was repealed. The widely spread | Provision is made for county mutual fire insurance tendency to regulate the practice of medicine and companies authorized to take risks only on property surgery was yielded to in an act providing for exam within the county. Those who practice pharmacy
are required to obtain a license. Prize fighting is circulating medium. Laws like this, if enforced, rigorously forbidden. Very large additional powers would powerfully tend to aggravate the evil by still are conferred upon the railroad commissioners ap- further keeping out of the State that very facility pointed under existing laws. The recent afflicting of the want of which so much complaint is already droughts in this State are evidenced by legislation made. empowering public officers to procure and furnish
VERMONT. to those otherwise unable to obtain it seed grain. This conservative State moves with characteristic
precaution in legislation. It passes an act authorTENNESSEE.
izing towns, cities and incorporated villages to esTennessee enacts a law removing from witnessses tablish public libraries at the public expense; disthe disabilities of unbelief. She also introduces a
courages a resort to it for the purpose of obtaining change into the law of adverse possession by provid- divorces by requiring a year's residence by the ing that an adverse holding shall not be effectual moving party before suit, and adds to the causes of unless under a recorded assurance of title; bestows divorce at the instance of the wife, the gross, or upon a particular county the very unusual power to wanton and cruel, neglect of a husband having sufsubscribe to the capital stock of “any domestic or ficient pecuniary or physical ability to provide an foreign manufacturing company;
follows the ex adequate support for her. Other legislation authorample of other States in protecting butter against izes the appointment of a married woman as execusimulated substitutes; extends favor to guaranty trix, guardian or trustee; compels towns to pay companies by authorizing the acceptance of them as into the State treasury a share of the profits made gurantors of public bonds; destroys preferences in on the sale of liquors under the prohibitory law; assignments by debtors in failing circumstances and regulates the practice of pharmacy by requiring makes such assignments enure equally for the benefit licenses upon examination; authorizes the quarof all creditors; provides measures for arresting the antining and killing under certain circumstances of spread of contagious or infectious diseases among domestic animals believed to be infected with bovine animals, and abolishes the convict lease system and tuberculosis, and makes the right of the owner to provides for the utilization of convict labor upon payment in such cases depend upon whether upon a farm and coal lands owned by the State.
post mortein examination it turns out that the animal
really had the disease or not. It also makes the TEXAS.
adulteration of candy or the sale of adulterated This vast commonwealth has enacted a goodly candy a punishable offence. number of laws most of which are of local interest
WASHINGTON. only. Some new policies, however, are favored. Married women over twenty-one years of age are no Much disposition was shown by the legistature at longer to have an advantage over others in actions its last session to take action along the true line of for the recovery of real property; they are subjected progress. The subject of admission to the bar was to the operation of the statute of limitations. A newly regulated; the magnanimous policy of subtentative effort is made in the direction of establish - | jecting the State to suit in her own courts was ing boards of arbitration for the settlement of dis- adopted; the equality of civil rights was assured by putes between employees and employers. An act is legislation securing the full and equal enjoyment passed for the registration and protection of trade- not only of all public accommodations and places marks, which my official correspondent in that of amusement, but also — a debatable policy – of State wisely suggests may serve rather than to such places as lodging and eating houses and bardistract attention from the broad and sufficient bers shops. Provision was made for the thorough rules of the common law, than to further elucidate and effective organization of the military power. the subject. The subject of irrigation has received the regulation and protection of law was extended additional attention, as in other States containing to the proceedings of political primary meetings. large arid regions. A law is passed preventing the An attempt was made to repress the supposed misabatement of actions for personal injuries not re
chiefs of cigarette smoking. The lours of labor of sulting in death, by the death of either party; an street car employes were limited to ten. A quite other making the perpetration of frauds at primary novel expedient for the protection of stockholders elections criminal; another taxing all national bank in corporate bodies was adopted by an act which notes, United States legal tender notes and other enables the stockholders at any time to expel a dinotes and certificates of the United States intended rector from office; very properly this is not done on to circulate as money. There seems to be a singular charges. It is the mere sic volo of the principal disinconsistency in legislation like this by States missing his agent. The proceeds of fire insuranc loudly complaining of the insufficient amount of the upon property exempted from the reach of creditors
is also exempted; and, what seems to me a very viction that simultaneous attempts by two distinct questionable policy, the proceeds of life insurance sovereignties to regulate elections held at the same on the life of a deceased person, are exempted from time and place are a hazardous policy which great liability for his debts. A policy on the subject of necessities alone can justify. If the apprehensions irrigation similar to that adopted in several other upon which the repeal of the Federal elections laws State is actioneri, by wbich irrigation di icts was resisted shall turn out to be unfounded, all may be established and irrigation be furnished at patriots will rejoice that the national statute book the expense of such districts.
no longer contains any enactinent founded on a dis
trust of the good faith or loyalty of any of the States. WEST VIRGINIA.
In concluding this very cursory and imperfect reMuch of the legislation of this State at its last
view of the more noteworthy features of the legislasession was of a local and special character and I
tion of the several States, I may be indulged in some observe little which possesses interest for other com
observations concerning the purpose for which our munities. A fatal blow is dealt at all assignments constitution requires it, and the conditions under by persons in insolvent circumstances preferring which it may be made ul. creditors. The assignment is left to stand, but must
One of the declared objects for which our associabe treated as for the benefit of all creditors alike.
tion wils formed was “to promote uniformity of WYOMING.
legislation throughout the Union;” but I take it
that uniformily, merely as such, and irrespective of An act is passed in this State allowing verdicts
the character of the legislation, is not what was into be rendered upon a concurrence of three-fourths tended, but a uniformity to be brought about by a of the jurors. An attempt is made to preserve the general acceptance of the best forms of legislation. few remnants of the race of buffalo by an absolute To advance the science of jurisprudence is also prohibition of the killing of that animal. A party
among our declared objects, and our constitution producing a witness is allowed to impeach him by provides for the appointment of a standing comproof of prior contradictory statements. A form of | mittee on Jurisprudence and Law Reform. I take municipal government is devised for cities of the
it that the terms “jurisprudence " and "law” were first class which are made to consist of cities of here employed in their larger import as including more than 4,000 inhabitants. Provision is also positive legislation, and that general legislative immade for the organization of the voluntary military provement is one of the objects which this notice of force.
the statutory action of the several States required CONGRESS.
by our constitution was designed to subserve. But The last national congress exhibited for the first
why is it that we, more than others, should charge time for more than a quarter of a century an as
ourselves with the duty of laboring for general legiscendency ir bare one, however, in the senate
lative improvement, sind how are we to make this of the Democratic party. It is, perhaps, due to the
knowledge of the legislative action of numerous inlatter circumstance that the action of that party in dependent States subservient to that end? Is this carrying into effect its own principles was in some
knowledge, of itself, instructive for the purpose in degree halting and irresolute. Notwithstanding view, or must something more be known in order this, three notable pieces of legislation were carried that it may be turned to good account? There are through One abrogated the singular and mis
some thoughts touching these questions which may chievous policy of a purchase by the government of usefully receive some attention. an enormous annual amount of one of the products If we conceive, as we justly may, an independent of industry, paid for by an issue of government society of men as one body apart from the individobligations having the quality of legal tender. nals composing it, with a separate and distinct conAnother made a large, though not a radical, modi- ception of its own existence and interests, and confication of the longer established policy of attempt- scious of a power to affect them by a predetermined ing to protect native industries by burdening im- line of action, the statutory laws of such a society ports from foreign countries with heavy duties. become analogous to the voluntary resolutions of a The third abrogated the supervision by the national person for self-improvement. Rightly interpreted, government of elections. The first cannot be re- they correctly represent the character of the society, garded as a party measure, having been both sup- and the best side of its character, that is, the side ported and opposed by large numbers in each party. exhibited by its resolutions for self-amendment. In a political atmosphere still highly charged with the observation by individuals of the examples, partisan beats and ambitions, useful comment mpon lives and characters of their fellow-men is one of the the other two is at present hardly possible. Per-chief means of individual improvement; and, in haps the public mind is settling into a general con like manner, the observation by one people of the
laws, that is to say, the character, of another people laws are actually executed, and if not, whether the may, be made a means of social improvement. fault is to be found in the frame work of the laws,
But this is a study which belongs to the sociologist or in the character of the people themselves; and if and the reformer, rather than to the mere lawyer. they are executed, the effects are to be studied that The latter, indeed, may have a special interest in we may know whether they are beneficial or otherthose laws of other societies than his own which wise. relate to the practice of his particular art, or to the The study of comparative legislation, must, thereinterests of his profession; but these comprise a fore, in order to be useful, be made a large one; but small and comparatively unimportant part of the this is no reason why it should not be taken up, but body of legislation in any State. Upon other sub an incentive to its diligent prosecution. The lesjects it is his business to know what the laws of his
sons of wisdom are taught by the experience of own State are, and this knowledge is not greatly others as well as by our own. Progress will be slow, aided by an inquiry into the legislation of other indeed, if we wait until our own misfortunes impress communities.
their lessons upon us. But in our country the members of our profession
And the practical far exceeds the academic imare not universally mere lawyers. They are every- portance of the study. It is a part of the study of where relied upon as the principal legislators. Their the general subject of legislation, than which nothstudies must necessarily qualify them to a certain
is more necessary and scarcely anything more negextent for this work, and it is the traditionary cus
lected. When we consider the amount of the talent, tom of American society to call upon them as well
skill and training which is called into requisition to for advice concerning the proper subjects for legis- satisfy those needs which are most immediately felt lation, as for their skill in fashioning the will of the by individuals, as in business affairs and those with people into appropriate enactments. It is this which
which the learned professions are concerned, and enlarges the area of the lawyer's interest and duties
compare it with that to which the all important task and makes everything which bears upon the prob- of framing our laws is entrusted, the spectacle seems lem of legislation important to him. The study and
almost ludicrous. What a difference the face of comparison of the legislation of different communi-society would present if our laws were conceived and ties is one of his duties, or at least one of the duties
framed with the same knowledge of the work and of those who are willing to accept, or who aspire to the same skillful adaptation of means to ends as is reach, a place in legislative bodies.
exhibited in the construction of a modern steamship, But how is this study to be turned to useful ac the argument of a well instructed lawyer, or the count? Imitation of well conceived laws is the treatment of a wound by an accomplished surgeon; ready suggestion; but how are we to know what is and yet legislation is in its nature a science as suswell conceived ? It is plain that a mere knowledge ceptible, however more difficult the task may be, of of the legislative work of others is not, of itself, suf- subjection to principle and rule as the professional ficient. I have said, and I think the observation work I have mentioned. just, that the laws of a people are analogous to the
I am not unaware of the difference in point of resolutions of an individual for self-improvement; excellence between public and private work. In a but are the laws executed! Do they represent the democratic society, particularly, it is not likely that resolutions of a wise and self-controlled man which
the selection of legislators can ever he made with are actually carried out and show their fruit in life | uniform wisdom: but a great step in avance will and character, or those abortive resolves which
be made when those who aspire to the office of legserve only to indicate a man conscious of error but islator, or are likely to be called upon to accept it, incapable of reformation? A community of tiplers begin to seek that knowledge which a just performmay be very willing to prohibit the sale of intoxica
ance of the office requires. ting drinks; but they mean nothing by it, and
Never so much as at the present time has the need nothing will come of the prohibition. The statute
of competent legislators been manifest.
The vast books of States, like the experience of individual increase of our populatiou, the great changes prolives, abound in broken promises of repentance.
duced by the increase of manufacturing industries, It is very manifest, therefore, that something more the vastly greater proportional increase of urban is required than the mere knowledge of the legisla-populations, the prodigious activities of modern tion of other communities in order to turn that societies, the enormous revenues which the public knowledge to good account. Something must be service requires; have all combined to raise most known from other and independent evidence of the difficult questions of legislation, many of which are character and actual condition of the people whose now pressing for better solutions, legislation is studied. We must learn whether the Take the great question of taxation, a problem