June 1680ACT V.An act for cohabitation and encouragement of trade and manufacture.

THIS present generall assembly haveing taken into their serious consideration the greate necessity, usefullnesse and advantages of cohabitation in this his majesties country of Virginia, and observing and foreseeing the greate extremities his majesties subjects here must necessarily fall under by the present and continued lownes of the price of tobacco, the only comodity and manufacture of this country (if the same be not by all prudentiall meanes and wayes prevented) and considering that the building of storehouses for the reception of all merchandizes imported, and receiving, secureing and laying ready all tobaccoes for exportation and for sale and disposall of all goods, merchandizes and tobaccoes imported or exported into or from this his majesties colony of Virginia wilbe one greate meanes for advancement thereof, doe pray your majestie that it may be enacted, and be it enacted by the kings most excellent majestie by and with the consent of the generall assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority aforesaid, that there be1 within two months next, and immediately after the publication hereof in every respective county within this his majesties colony ffifty acres of land purchased by the ffeoffees of the severall counties at the rates hereafter sett downe and measured about, layd out and appointed for a towne for storehouses, &c. for such county as is hereafter sett downe and expressed, that is to say,

In Henrico county att Verina where the court house is.

In Charles Citty county at fflower de hundred over against Swiniares.2

In Surry county att Smiths ffort.

In James Citty county at James Citty.

In Isle of Wight county at Pates ffeild att the parting of Pagan Creeke.

In Nanzemond county att coll. Dues point als Huffs point.

In Warwick county att the mouth of Deep creek on Mr. Mathews land.

In Elizabeth Citty county on the westside Hampton river on Mr. Thomas Jervise his plantation where he now lives.

In Lower Norfolke county on Nicholas Wise his land on the Easterne Branch on Elizabeth river at the entrance of the branch.

In Yorke county on Mr. Reeds land where the Ship Honors store was, including the low beach for land, wharfes, &c. and the old field where Webber dwelt for cohabitation.

In New Kent county att the Brick house a long the high land from marsh to marsh.

In Gloster county att Tindalls point on Tindalls creeke side on John Williams land.

In Middlesex on the west side of Ralph Wormeleys creeke against the plantation where he now lives.

In Rappahanock county att Hobses3 Hole.

In Stafford county att Pease4 Point att the mouth of Aquia on the northside.

In Westmerland county att Nomenie5 on the land of Mr. Hardricke.

In Accomack county att Colverts neck on the northwest side att the head of an Anchor6 Creek.

In Northampton county at the northside of kings creeke beginning at the mouth and soe along the creeke on the land belonging to Mr. Secretaryes office.

In Lancaster county on the northside Coretomond river agaist the place where the ships ride on a point of land belonging to Mr. Edward Carter about a quarter of a mile up the creeke which divides Mr. Chownings and the courthouse.

In Northumberland county, Chickacony.

And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, and it is hereby enacted that the price to be paid by each county for each respective ffifty acres of land nominated as aforesaid shalbe tenn thousand pounds of tobacco and caske, which summe the owner or owners thereof shalbe and are hereby constrained to accept take and receive as a full and valueable price and consideration for the said land for ever, and for which he shall acknowledge and pass an authentique deed in law to such person or persons his or their heires and assignes for ever, as shalbe nominated by the justices of the county court as ffeoffees in trust, and to and for the use of the county; and for encouragement of all and every such person and persons whatsoever as will build a dwelling house and a ware house thereupon, every such person and persons shall have assigned him or them by the justice or justices of the county ffeoffee or ffeoffees in the deed named, or in case of the death or absence of one or more of them, then by such other as shall be appointed by the court, one halfe acre of the said land in ffee simple, he pay to the county one hundred pounds of tobacco and caske and building such dwelling house and ware house thereupon as by this act is enjoyned. And in case any person should desire more then one halfe acre, that then there be assigned to him one halfe acre more in manner aforesaid, he building thereupon one other dwelling house and one warehouse, and paying the county one hundred pounds of tobacco and caske for the same. And it is hereby further enacted that every such person or persons as shall desire and purchase such lands as aforesaid and shall not begin to build thereupon within three months after such purchase and soe continue to the ffinishing such building as by this act is enjoyned shall forfeite all such tobaccoes and land and the same to revert to the county soe as to be sould and assigned to any other person or persons desireing the same on the prices and conditions aforesaid. And it is further enacted that the surveyor or surveyors appointed to lay out the said ffifty acres in the severall appointed places, be paid and allowed by the publique according to act of assembly, and that every surveyor for laying out every dividuall halfe acre, and giveing a platt thereof shall be paid by him that shall imploy him twenty pouuds of tobacco and caske and noe more, and such surveyor as upon timely notice given him shall refuse to survey and lay out the same, or that shall demand more then what is here allowed upon due proofe thereof made, shall pay to the party agrieved ffive hundred pounds of tobacco, to be recovered by action of debt in any court of judicature. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid and it is hereby enacted, that all tobaccoes whatsoever which shall be made within this his majesties colony from and after the ffirst day of January next ensueing, and alsoe other goods and merchandizes whatsoever of the growth of this colony to be exported shalbe brought to the said appointed places where all such tobaccoes and all other goods and merchandizes whatsoever of the growth or production of this colony, are to be brought sould, shipped and freighted, and whosoever shall presume to buy, sell freight or ship of any tobaccoe or other goods or merchandizes aforesaid next after the tyme aforesaid, before the same is brought to such appointed places, upon due proofe thereof made shall forfeite and loose all such tobaccoes, or other merchandizes whatsoever, one halfe to his majesty and the other halfe to the informer, any law, usuage or custome to the contrary notwithstanding. And all goods, wares, English servants, negroes and other slaves, and merchandizes whatsoever that shalbe imported into this colony from after the twenty ninth day of September, which shall be in the yeare 1681, shalbe landed and layd on shore, bought and sould at such appointed places aforesaid and at noe other place whatsoever, under like penalty and forfeiture thereof. Provided alwayes that it shall and may be lawfull for any person whatsoever to have liberty to buy and sell betweene themselves any horses, mares, cattle, sheep, corne English grayne or any other manner of provisions whatsoever, and also liberty to carry hides to the tanners where the tann houses are, any thing in this law to the contrary in any wise notwithstanding. And to prevent exactions that may be used by sloopmen who must necessarily be imployed to bring the said tobaccoes to the said appointed places and for the owners of ware houses for storage thereof. It is hereby enacted that the owners of the tobacco bringing the same to the water side where it is to be taken on board shall pay for sloop hire noe more then twenty pounds of tobacco and caske for each hogshead if the said tobacco be within thirty miles of the said warehouse to which it is to be brought, and what distance soever further fforty pounds of tobacco and caske for each hogshead and noe more, upon penalty of forfeiting one hundred pounds of tobacco and caske for each hogshead by him who shall demand, receive or take more, to the use of the party grieved; and for the storage of any hogshead of tobacco in any ware house the owner thereof shall pay to the warehouse keeper tenn pounds of tobacco for the ffirst day or for a month, and for every month after, six pounds of tobacco and noe more. And whereas there are severall persons who are soe remote from landings proper for takeing their tobacco on board the sloopes or boates for transporting the same to the appointed places. It is therefore further enacted that in case any person or persons owners of such lands which shalbe convenient to build a house upon, convenient for secureing such tobaccoes untill the same can be shipped shall refuse to build such house for secureing such tobaccoes untill the same can be shipped as aforesaid, that in such cases liberty is granted, and liberty is hereby granted to any person or persons whatsoever for soe much land as he or they may conveniently build such fitting house upon for secureing such tobaccoes as shalbe brought thither in order to transporting the same to the warehouses appointed in this act, he or they who shall desire the same and build thereupon according as by this law is intended, paying to the owner thereof such price and prices as are sett downe and ordered to be paid in the act of assembly provided for lands, churches and mills, and that there be allowed free liberty of ingresse and egresse to and from such house or houses not comitting any trespasse, And for encouragements of all that shall transport their tobaccoes to the appointed places mentioned in this act, It is also hereby enacted that noe executions, attachments or other processe in law shalbe executed or layd upon the said tobacco on the tyme of transportation thereof to the said appointed places or in the ware houses for any debt contracted before the passing this act, the party that transports such tobaccoes haveing first made oath before a magistrate that he is really and bona fide transporting the same to one of the said warehouses. And for encouragement of carpenters, sawyers, brickmakers, bricklayers, labourers and all other tradesmen whatsoever that will cohabitt, dwell and exercise their trades within the said appointed places or any of them, It is hereby enacted by the authority aforesaid that all such persons soe inhabiting shall within the lymitted bounds of the severall respective places be wholly freed from any arrest of their persons or seizure of their estates for such debts as were formerly contracted, for and during the terme and tyme of ffive yeares to come next after the publication of this law, not barring the creditor or creditors to sue for and receive their debts when that tyme of ffive yeares is expired, any law custome or usuage to the contrary notwithstanding. And it is hereby further enacted that all such trades and labourers cohabiting in the places aforesaid, and not planting, tending or makeing tobacco, shalbe freed and acquitt from paying any publique levyes during the terme of ffive yeares from the publication of this act. Provided alwayes, and it is hereby meant and intended to be meant that all such debts that shall accrue by any bargaine or contract made or to be made within the lymitts of the said appointed places or any of them, imediate process may be granted thereon, any thing in this law to the contrary notwithstanding. And for the more sure receiving all such tobacco as shalbe brought to the aforesaid stores or warehouses to the use and advantage of the owners thereof. It is hereby further enacted by the authority aforesaid that noe collector or collectors of levyes or parish tythables shall make distresse or seizure of any tobaccoes in such places for publique, county or parish levyes or for sherriffes or clerkes fees, but that all sherriffes and publique collectors shalbe and are hereby enjoyned to collect and receive the tobaccoes due in their collections as heretofore was usuall, and the publique or other creditors to receive the same accordingly. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid and it is hereby enacted, that for the better advancement of the price of tobaccoes and lessening of freight, that noe merchant, factor, or adventurer whatsoever arriveing with any goods, wares, servants, slaves or other merchandizes whatsoever into this colony shall presume to buy, ship off or freight any tobacco whatsoever from of the before appoynted places att any tyme or tymes before the twentyeth of March 1681, by which tyme it may be presumed and beleived all tobaccoes whatsoever which shalbe made in this colony may be brought to the said appointed places, under the penalty of forfeiting and loosing all such goods, wares, &c. And all tobaccoes soe purchased one halfe to his majestie and the other halfe to him or them that shall and will informe and sue for the same, any law, usuage or custome to the contrary thereof in any wise notwithstanding. Provided alwayes, and it is hereby meant and intended that this restriction shall continue two yeares from the said twentyeth of March and noe longer; Provided alsoe that notwithstanding any thing in this act conteyned, any inhabitants dwelling within the said appointed places shall have liberty to sell such goods and merchandizes as they have of their owne at any time. Provided alsoe, and it is hereby enacted that if two or more countyes lying convenient to each other shall within two months before recyted agree together at one comon place and towne for such their county and lay out the ground for the same in comon betwixt and amongst them, and there build houses as by this act is enjoyned, that then such one towne soe agreed on and appointed laid out and built shall serve and be suffitient for such two or more countyes, any thing in this law to the contrary notwithstanding, And it is hereby further enacted that all magistrates take due care to see this act be strictly observed and put in execution.


{1} 'By' in Purvis.

{2} 'Swynyards' in Purvis.

{3} 'Hobbs his' in Purvis.

{4} 'Peace' in Purvis.

{5} 'Noming' in Purvis.

{6} 'Anancock' in Purvis.