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security was given to be lost, such loss shall be made good to the assignee out of the estate of such testator or intestate.

XXVIII. Provided also, That where any testator Where no shall direct, that his estates hall not be appraised, or appraisement shall shall be preserved in specie, and not sold, and shall benecessary. leave personal estate more than sufficient to pay all bis debts, nothing in this act shall extend or be construed to controul such last will, but the same shall and may be pursued and fulfilled; and the returning an inventory of the estate of such testator, without appraisement, shall be sufficient.

And an inventory sufficient.

Slaves shall

where not e

XXIX. Provided also, That no executor or adminnot be sold, istrator hath or shall have any power, to sell or disexcept pose of any slave or slaves of his testator or intestate, nough other except, for the paying and satisfying the just debts of goods to pay such testator or intestate, and then only, where there debts. is not sufficient other personal estate to satisfy and pay such debts; and in that case, it shall be lawful for the executor or administrator to sell, at public auction such or so many slave or slaves, as shall be sufficient to raise so much money as the personal estate falls short of the payment of the debts.

Rules con

XXX. And be it further enacted, by the authority cerning ser- aforesaid, That where any person shall die, between vants, slaves, the first day of March, and the twenty fifth day of Deand crops. cember, the servants and slaves which such person was possessed of at the time of his or her death, shall be continued and employed upon the plantation and plantations, held and occupied by the deceased person, until the twenty fifth day of December then next following, for the making and finishing a crop of tobacco, corn, or other grain; which crop, so made and finished, shall be assets in the hands of the executors or administrators, after the charges of cloathing and feeding such servants and slaves, and the expence of tools and utensils for them to work with, and also the quitrents of the land whereon they work, levies and other incident charges, shall be deducted.

Servants & slaves to be

XXXI. And after the said twenty fifth day of Dedelivered up, cember all the servants and slaves of such deceased after Dec 25. person shall be delivered up, to the party or parties hayears, well ving legal right to demand the same, and all such of cloathed. the said servants or slaves, as shall then be of the age

All above 10

of ten years or more, shall be delivered, well cloathed, at the charge of such decedent's estate.

XXXII. Provided always, That no executor or ad- If dead be. ministrator shall be answerable for any servant or fore that slave, dying before the said twenty fifth day of Decem- time execu. ber, altho' such servant or slave be inventoried, or ap-swerable. praised.

tor not an

clerk's of

XXXIII. And for the better preservation of wills, Wills to reBe it further enneted, by the authority aforesaid. That main in the all original wills shall remain in the clerk's office, a- fice. mong the records of the respective counties where they shall be proved, whereto any person may have recourse, as to other records, except for the time the same shall be removed by direction of the general court; and that to every probat shall be annexed a true copy of the will whereupon such probat was granted.

XXXIV. And forasmuch as the preserving of neat Cattle shall cattle, and their increase, may be of great advantage be preserved till the heir to orphans, for the improving their lands; Be it furcomes of age: ther enacted by the authority aforesaid, That where any person dying intestate, shall leave sufficient to satisfy his debts, besides slaves and neat cattle, the heir at law being under age, such cattle shall be kept upon the lands and plantation of such heir, until he shall come of age, and he shall have the benefit of their increase, and bear all loss, if any shall happen.


XXXV. Provided nevertheless, That the administra- But if too tor of such estate, or guardian of such orphan, in case numerous such stock grow too numerous, or if it will be to the ad- part may be vantage of such orphan, shall, and may sell such part of such stock, as he shall think fit; and also that such And the heir heir at law shall satisfy and pay unto the other chil- shall be andren, or such other persons as shall be intitled to a distribution of such intestate's estate, his, her or their proportionable part or parts of the value of such stocks of cattle, as shall be left at the time of the death of such intestate.

swerable to the other children.

XXXVI. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That all and every the cxecutors and ad ministrators of any person or persons, who, as executor or executors, in his or their own wrong, and the executor or executors, administrator, or administrators, of any executor or administrator of right, who shall waste, or convert to his own use, goods, chattels, or estate of his testator or intestate, shall be liable, and chargeable, in L 3-Vol. 5.

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the same manner, as his or their testator or intestate, should or might have been.

Executors of

guardians, joint-ten


XXXVII. And that actions of account shall and may be brought and maintained against the executors or ants, &c. ac- administrators of every guardian, bailiff and receiver, and also by one joint tenant, or tenant in common, for receiving his executors or administrators, against the other, as bailiff, for receiving more than comes to his just share or proportion, and against the executor or administrator of such joint tenant, or tenant in common.

more than

their share.


Executors & XXXVIII. And that all executors and administraadministrators shall be allowed in their accounts, all reasonable tors allow charges and disbursements, which they shall lay out and expend, for selling any estate, and receiving the money, upon such sale pursuant to this act; and also, for collecting and receiving the outstanding debts of their testator, or intestate; and no other allowance whatsoever.

Lists of pro

ministrations when, and how to be returned.

XXXIX. And be it further enacted, by the authority bats and ad- aforesaid, That the clerk of every county court shall, in the months of April and October, annually, return to the secretary's office, a list of all certificates for obtaining probats or administrations, granted by their respective courts, from time to time, containing the names of the testators or intestates, their executors or administrators, and the names of the securities; which lists, the secretary of this colony, is hereby required to cause to be recorded in his office, alphabetically, in books for that purpose.

tate is of the value of 1001.

XL. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforeWhere an es- said, That where any testator or intestate shall leave estate, real or personal, of the value of one hundred or more, pro- pounds current money, or more, it shall and may be bat, or ad- lawful for the general court of this dominion, upon mo ministration tion to them made, to receive the proof of such testamay be granted by the tor's will, to them exhibited, and to hear and determine general the right of administration of the estate of such intestate, and thereupon to grant certificate for obtaining probat or administration, or administration with the will annexed, as the case shall require, in the same manner, and with the same rules and limitations, as by this act is before directed to be observed in the county courts: And that all probats, and commissions of administration, granted upon certificates obtained in the general court, shall be issued under the seal of this colony, and sign


ed by the governor, or commander in chief of this dominion for the time being, or by the president of the council for the time being, or by such judge or judges of the said court, as shall be for that purpose authorised, by commission of the said governor or commander in chief, which shall be good and effectual in law, to enable the executors, or administrators therein named, to recover and take the estate of their testator or intestate, so to them committed.

XLI. And that the forms of all oaths and bonds, by Oaths, and this act required of executors and administrators, bonds, as be: shall be the same in the general court, as in the county



XLII. Provided always, That where the general And securicourt shall grant certificate for obtaining the adminis- ty. tration of any estate, and shall fail to take sufficient security for the same, in such case the members of the said court, granting such certificate and every of them, shall be liable to pay all loss and damages accruing by such failure, in the same manner as the justices of the county court in the like case should have been.

XLIII. And be it further enacted, by the authority Repealing aforesaid, That all and every other act and acts, clause. clause and clauses, heretofore made, for or concerning any matter or thing, within the purview of this act, shall be, and are hereby repealed.

XLIV. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforesaid, That this act shall commence and be in force, from and immediately after the tenth day of June, act. which shall be in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and fifty one.


An Act for establishing the General Court, and for regulating and settling the proceedings therein.

continuing such courts, as shall be competent and necessary, to hear and determine all such causes, as shall be brought before them, Be it enacted, by the Lieutenant-Governor, Council, and Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted, by the author

Commencement of this

[From edit. 1752

This act was re

I. OR the regular determination of suits and con- pealed by

erecting, constituting, and

on. See note to chap. 2.]

court of Vir

ity of the same, That at some one certain place, lawfully appointed, and at the time and times herein after directed, there shall be held one principal court of judicature for this colony and dominion, which court shall The general be, and is hereby established by the name of the genginia. eral court of Virginia, and shall consist of his majesWho shall be ty's governor or commander in chief, and council, for judgesthere- the time being, any five of them to be a court; and they are hereby appointed and declared judges or jusFive of them to be a court. tices, to hear and determine all suits and controversies which shall be depending in the said court.


The judges 11. And be it further enacted, by the authority aforeto be sworn. said, That every person who shall, from time to time, or at any time hereafter, accept the office of a judge or justice of the said court, before his entering upon, and executing the same, shall take the oaths appointed to be taken by act of parliament, and repeat and subscribe the test, and shall also take the following oaths, to wit,

The oath of a Judge of the General Court.

YOU shall swear, that you will well and truly serve Their oath, our sovereign lord the king, and his people, in the ofas judges of fice of a judge or justice of the general court of Virgicommon law. nia, and you shall not counsel, or assent, to any thing which may turn to the hurt or disheriting of the king, by any way or colour, and you shall do equal law and execution of right to all the king's subjects, rich and poor, without having regard to any person: You shall not take by yourself, or by any other person, any gift or reward, of gold, silver, or any other thing, for any matter by you done, or to be done, by virtue of your office: You shall not take any fees, or other gratuity, of any person, great or small, except such salary as shall be by law appointed, or such salary as his majesty, his heirs or successors, shall think fit to allow you for your service: You shall not maintain by yourself or any other, privily or openly, any plea or quarrel, hanging in any of the king's courts: You shall not delay any person of common right, for the letters of the king, his governors of this colony, or of any other person, nor for any other cause; and in case any letter come to you, contrary to the law, you shall nothing do for such letter, but you shall proceed to do

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