Page images

SEC. 20. The circuit court, or any judge thereof during the vacation of said court, shall have power to award a writ of error in any criminal case whatever, wherein final judgment shall have been pronounced by the criminal court of this District, convicting any person of any crime or misdemeanor. Such writ of error shall be returned to the circuit court which may be in session, or to the next circuit court which may be held at the time fixed by law for holding the same. The circuit court may reverse the judgment pronounced by the criminal court, or remand the case, or order a new trial, or such other proceeding as the nature of the case may require. The judgment of the circuit court shall be certified to the clerk of the criminal court, and preserved amongst the original papers in the case.

SEC. 21. Where, at any term of the circuit court, a jury shall be empanneled to try any cause or issue, and it shall happen that no verdict shall be found, nor the jury otherwise discharged before the day appointed by law for the commencement of the next succeeding term, the said court shall and may, nevertheless, proceed with the trial by the same jury in every respect as if such term had not commenced; and all subsequent proceedings to final judgment, if such judgment shall be rendered, shall be entered and have legal effect and operation as of the term at which the jury shall have been empanneled.

SEC. 22. No action, cause, process, or proceeding pending in the circuit court shall be discontinued by reason of such court not having been held at any stated term, or any adjournment thereof, but they shall respectively be returned to, entered, and have day in the term which shall be held after such failure.

SEC. 23. If at the end of a term of the said court any matters depending therein are undetermined, the same, subject to the provisions of section twenty-two of this chapter, shall stand continued until the next term.

SEC. 24. The said court shall be held in the city of Washington, in this District. There shall be three regular terms thereof for each year, to wit: the first beginning on the first Monday of January; the second beginning on the first Monday of May; and the third beginning on the first Monday of October.

SEC. 25. The chief judge of said court shall receive an annual salary of three thousand seven hundred and fifty dollars; and each of the

associate judges shall receive an annual salary of three thousand five hundred dollars. The said salaries shall be paid in quarterly payments out of the treasury of the United States, and in the same proportion for any part of a quarter.

[blocks in formation]

SECTION 1. The present clerk of the circuit court shall continue to hold his office during the pleasure of the said court; and as a vacancy occurs the said court shall appoint a proper person to be clerk thereof, to serve as such during the pleasure of the said circuit court.

SEC. 2. Every clerk of the circuit court, before entering upon the duties of his office, shall give bond to the United States, to be approved by the circuit court, in a sum not less than ten thousand dollars, with two sufficient sureties, with condition for the faithful discharge of the duties of his office.

SEC. 3. He shall also be sworn to the faithful discharge of the duties of his office, which oath shall be administered by the chief judge of the circuit court.

SEC. 4. Such clerk may appoint one or more deputies, who, except where otherwise provided, shall have the same power as their principal; the appointment shall be in writing, and signed by such clerk, and shall be filed in the office of the recorder. He may revoke the appointment of any deputy at will, by writing, filed in the same office. Each deputy, before entering on his duties, shall take the oath of office, which shall be endorsed on his appointment.

SEC. 5. Such clerk may take from each of his deputies a bond, with sureties, for the faithful performance of his duties; but the clerk and the sureties on his official bond shall be liable for all the official acts of each deputy.

SEC. 6. All processes issued by any deputy clerk shall be issued in the name of the principal.

SEC. 7. Such clerk shall, either by person or by deputy, attend each term of the circuit court. He shall keep his office in the building provided for that purpose, and shall take charge of and safely keep, or dispose of according to law, all books, papers, and records which may be filed or deposited in his office.

SEC. 8. Such clerk shall enter the proceedings of the circuit court in a book to be provided for that purpose. The proceedings of each day shall be drawn up at large, and read by the clerk in open court the next day, except that the proceedings of the last day of a term shall be drawn up and read the same day. After being corrected where necessary, the record shall be signed by the chief judge, or, in case of his absence, by the senior assistant judge. Said clerk shall endorse under his hand on all writings required to be filed in his office, the time of filing thereof; shall issue all writs and processes required to be issued from said court; shall enter into the proper record books, under direction of the court, all orders, judgments, and decrees proper to be entered; and shall keep such dockets and other books of record, each with its proper alphabetical index, as may be required by law, or by the rules of the court.

SEC. 9. Such clerk shall have power to administer all oaths.

SEC. 10. For any wrongful act, or any omission to perform any duty imposed on him by law, the clerk shall be liable on his bond to any person injured.

SEC. 11. If such clerk shall knowingly and wilfully do any act contrary to the duties of his office, or shall knowingly and wilfully fail to perform any act or duty required of him by law, he shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor; and, on conviction, shall be fined in any sum not exceeding one thousand dollars and be removed from office.

SEC. 12. No clerk or deputy clerk of any court in this District shall be permitted to practise as an attorney or counsellor at law in any action or proceeding in any court whatever. For violating the pro

visions of this section he shall be deemed guilty of a misdeanor, and fined a sum not exceeding one thousand dollars.

SEC. 13. The circnit court shall, at least once in every year, examine the clerk's office, and enter on record the manner in which the books and papers thereof are kept.

SEC. 14. Such clerk, on the expiration of his term of office, shall deliver to his successor all the records, books, and papers belonging to his office.

[blocks in formation]

SECTION 1. The orphans' court of this District, consisting of one judge, is hereby continued, with the powers and jurisdiction conferred by this Code upon the same. The said judge shall hold his office during good behavior.

SEC. 2. The present judge of the orphans' court shall continue to hold his office according to the tenor of his commission; and as a vacancy occurs it shall be filed in the manner prescribed by law.

SEC. 3. Every person who shall be appointed a judge of the orphans' court shall, before he begins to exercise the duties of his office, take an oath to support the constitution of the United States, and faithfully and impartially to perform the duties of his office to the best of his skill and judgment,

SEC. 4. The orphans' court shall be a court of record, and shall have an appropriate seal, devised by the judge thereof, a description of which shall be filed with the register of said court and recorded.

SEC. 5. The orphans' court shall have cognizance of all matters relating to the probate of wills; the granting and revoking of letters testamentary; of administration and collection; the conduct and accounts of guardians, executors, administrators, and collectors of the effects of deceased persons; the securing the rights of orphans and legatees; the distribution of the personal estates of intestates, and to the administration of justice in the affairs and estates of deceased persons, according to law.

SEC. 6. Such court may appoint guardians to minors, and revoke such appointments, in cases provided by law.

SEC. 7. Such court shall have power and authority, in cases provided for by law, to examine and decide upon all accounts, claims, and demands existing between wards and their guardians, and between legatees, or persons entitled to any distributable part of an intestate's estate, and executors or administrators.

SEC. 8. If, in any case cognizable in the orphans' court, the judge thereof may be, or shall have been, interested, either as counsel, legatee, or otherwise, such case, and all matters relating thereto, shall be instituted and transacted, prosecuted and determined, in the circuit court; and the circuit court shall have full and complete jurisdiction thereof, and shall be governed in all matters touching the same by the provisions of law which govern the orphans' court in similar cases.

SEC. 9. If, during the pendency of any matter in the orphans' court, the judge thereof shall become disqualified to hear and determine the same for any of the causes specified in the last preceding section, such matter shall be transferred to the circuit court, with like effect as if the same had been instituted in the circuit court, according to the provisions of the last preceding section.

SEC. 10. The orphans' court shall have full power to grant and issue all process necessary or proper to carry into effect the powers of said court.

SEC. 11. The orphans' court, in the exercise of its powers and jurisdiction, may enforce obedience to, and execution of, its orders, decrees, or other process, by attachment of contempt or by sequestration.

« PreviousContinue »