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Pursuant to Section 3, Article V, of the Constitution, and for the purpose of carrying the same into effect, the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, passed an Act entitled "An Act to provide for the Revision and Consolidation of the Statute Laws of the State of South Carolina,” approved March 9, 1009. The 1st, 2d, 3d, 4th, 5th and 6th Sections of said Act are as follows:
"SECTION 1. In pursuance of Section 3 of Article V of the Constitution of this State, this General Assembly will proceed to elect three Commissioners, whose duty it shall be to revise, simplify, digest, arrange and consolidate, under proper heads, all the statute laws of the State, general and permanent in their nature, which shall be in force at the time when they make their final report.
"SEC. 2. In performing this duty the Commissioners shall bring together all statutes and parts of statutes which, from similarity of subject, ought to be brought together, omitting redundant and obsolete enactments, and making such alterations as may be necessary to reconcile the contradictions, supply the omissions and amend the imperfections of the original text; and they shall arrange the laws under titles, chapters, sections, or other suitable divisions and sub-divisions, and with head notes briefly expressive of the matter contained in such divisions ; also, with side notes, so drawn as to point to the contents of the text, and with references to the original text from which each section is compiled, and to decisions of the Courts of the State expounding or explaining the same, as they may deem expedient. They shall also provide, by a temporary index, or other suitable means, for an easy reference to every portion of, their report.
“Sec. 3. When the Commissioners have completed the revision and consolidation of the statutes, as aforesaid, they shall cause a copy of the same, in print, to be submitted to the General Assembly, that the statutes so revised and consolidated may be re-enacted, if the General Assembly shall so determine; and at the same time they shall suggest to the General Assembly such contradictions, omissions and imperfections as may
appear in the original text, with the mode in which they have reconciled, supplied and amended the same; and they may also designate such statutes or parts of statutes as in their judginent ought to be repcaled, with their reasons for such repeal.
“Sec. 4. The Commissioners shall be authorized to cause their work to be printed, in parts, as fast as it may be ready for the press, and to distribute copies of the same to members of the General Assembly, and to such other persons, in limited numbers, as they may see fit, for the purpose of obtaining their suggestions; and they shall report, from time to time, to the General Assembly, their progress and doings.
“SEC. 5. The statutes so revised and consolidated shall be reported to the General Assembly as soon as practicable, and the whole work closed without unnecessary delay.
"SEC. 6. That justice may be administered in a uniform mode of pleading, without distinction between law and equity, the Commissioners shall revise, simplify and abridge the rules, practice, pleadings and forms of the Courts now in use in the State, and report a code of procedure for the adoption of the General Assembly at its next session.”
By virtue of this Act, W.J. WHIPPER, of Beaufort, CHARLES W. MONTGOMERY, of Newberry, and DAVID T. CORBIN, of Charleston, were elected, in March, 1869, Commissioners. In April following, the Commissioners entered upon the discharge of their duties, and, as required by the sixth Section of the aforesaid Act, reported a Code of Procedure for adoption by the General Assembly at its next session in December, 1869. All the members of the Commission being members of the General Assembly, no labor was done upon the General Statutes till after the adjournment of that body in March, 1870. From this time forward, till the 28th of November, 1871, with the exception of during the legislative session of 1870-'71, Mr. Corbin devoted himself to the work of the Commission, at which time he completed the final report. Neither Mr. Whipper nor Mr. Montgomery was able to participate in the work upon the General Statutes, the first on account of other pressing business engagements, and the second on account of ill health. They, however, approved the final report, and joined in subunitting the same to the General Assembly on the 28th of November, 1871.
The General Assembly, having received the final report of the Commişsioners, passed the following Act in reference thereto, which became a law on the 10th of February, A. D. 1872, viz:
"AN ACT TO APPROVE, ADOPT AND MAKE OF FORCE THE GENERAL STATUTES OF THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA, PREPARED UNDER THE DIRECTION, AND BY THE AUTHORITY, OF THE GENERAL AsSEMBLY.
“ Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of South Carolina, now met and sitting in General Assembly, and by the authority of the same, That the General Statutes of the State of South Carolina, prepared, under its authority, by W. J. Whipper, C. W. Montgomery and D. T. Corbin, Esquires, and reported to the General Assembly, be, and the same are hereby, adopted as the Statutes of the State of South Carolina, and the Acts, Ordinances and Resolves, recommended by their titles to be repealed by said Commissioners, be, and the same are hereby, repealed.”
Since the approval and adoption by the General Assembly of the General Statutes an Index has been prepared with much labor, which, it is believed, will be found full and accurate.
D. T, CORBIN. APRIL, 1872.