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granted by the supreme court and the creditor shall appeal from the decision of said court, all proceedings for debt against the person of the petitioner shall be stayed until the trial of the petition in the general assembly, or until the general assembly shall otherwise direct.

SEC. 16. Every insolvent debtor who shall without fraud or perjury obtain a certificate of discharge by order and under the seal of said court, shall forever thereafter be exonerated and protected from arrest, imprisonment, or any manner of bodily restraint on account of any debt, covenant, contract, (except a promise of marriage,) agreement, or pecuniary obligation of any kind, not originating in tort or in criminal conduct, contracted, entered into or incurred prior to the filing of his petition; but any creditor of said insolvent may sue out an original summons against him, and upon final judgment rendered thereon in favor of such creditor, execution shall issue to be levied and served as in ordinary cases: provided, that such execution shall not run against the body of said insolvent, nor shall his real estate be attached thereon, unless he at the time of the attachment be absent from the state or concealed therein; and in no case shall the plaintiff in any suit against said insolvent be permitted to dispute the validity of said insolvent's discharge, unless he shall give notice thereof, and of the precise ground of his objection, in writing on the back of his original writ; which notice shall be read to the defendant as part of said writ, or be inserted in the copy left at his last and usual place of abode; and upon the trial of such action the defendant shall be at liberty to plead specially his said discharge, in bar thereto, or may give the same in evidence under the general issue; and in either case his certificate under the seal of the court shall be conclusive of his legal discharge, and the validity thereof shall not be called in question except upon sufficient legal proof produced in the trial of the charge, specified as aforesaid in the original writ, either of wilful perjury in his examination before the court, or on any other occasion before said court, during the pendency of his petition, or before said assignee, or before the magistrate in swearing to his inventory, list of debts or other statements; or of any other fraudulent proceeding or practices on the part of said defendant, and by him concealed from said court, for the purpose of fraudulently obtaining his said discharge; and if any one of said charges shall on trial be found true, then the plaintiff shall have judgment for his debt or damages, (being first proved and ascertained,) in the same manner as if no such discharge had ever

been granted to the defendant; and said discharge shall, in all cases forever thereafter, be considered null and void. But in case the plaintiff shall fail to prove any one of said charges to the satisfaction of the jury or court before whom the same may be tried, then the defendant shall be entitled to his costs; and the plaintiff upon paying the same to the defendant or to the clerk in open court for the defendant's use, shall be entitled to his judgment and execution as is first in this section provided; but if the plaintiff shall fail so to pay said cost before the last day of the same term of the court, then the defendant shall have judgment and execution for the cost against the plaintiff: provided, that whenever any such insolvent shall be a partner in trade or business as a joint contractor with any other person, then the original writ against such partners or joint contractors shall run against said insolvent, as is herein before prescribed, and against all the other partners or joint contractors, as in ordinary cases; and in any such case the final judgment, if in favor of the plaintiff, shall be against the property of said insolvent as is herein before provided, and against the other defendants in the usual form; and separate executions shall issue in conformity to said judgment.

SEC. 17. In all cases where there shall be mutual debts or demands subsisting between the insolvent and any of his creditors, previous to the reception of his petition as aforesaid, said assignee shall (the just amount thereof being first ascertained) offset such mutual claims, and the balance only shall be paid or claimed on either side, respectively; said assignee shall also have power to submit any and all claims and demands against said estate, or in favor thereof, to the final decision of referees under a rule of any competent court.

SEC. 18. The oath to be taken by the petitioner to his inventory, on his preferring his petition for the benefit of this act, and also the oath to be taken by him to the same, upon the appointment of his assignee, shall be as follows: You

do solemnly swear, (or affirm,) that the inventory on file with your petition is a just, true and perfect inventory and account of all your property and estate of every kind and nature, in possession or action, reversion or remainder, excepting wearing apparel; and that you have not at any time, directly or indirectly, sold, leased or otherwise conveyed or disposed of to, or intrusted any person or persons whomsoever with, all or any part of the property or estate, real or personal, whereof you have been the owner or possessor, to defraud your creditors or any of them, or with any intent or design to secure the same, or to secure or expect any profit,

benefit or advantage therefrom, for yourself or any of your children or family, or any other person; nor done, nor caused nor suffered to be done, any act, matter or thing whatever, whereby any of your creditors may be defrauded; so help you God; or, this affirmation you make and give upon peril of the penalty of perjury.

SEC. 19. Before any dividend as aforesaid, all debts due to this state or any town therein for taxes, or to the United States, (if any,) shall be paid, so far as the property of the insolvent will go towards paying the same; and nothing in this act shall be taken to impair any bona fide lien existing prior to the reception of any such petition upon any land, estate or effects of any such insolvent.

SEC. 20. No man who shall hereafter intermarry with any woman who shall have the benefit of this act extended to her, and who has complied with and conformed to all the requirements of this act on her part, shall be liable in any way, in his person or estate, for any debt incurred or on any contract, covenant, bond or agreement, entered into by his wife, before the benefit of this act was extended to her, for any greater amount than the value of such property as actually came to his possession or under his control, by her marriage, other than her wearing apparel.

SEC. 21. The benefit of this act shall not be extended to any debtor whose debts do not exceed one hundred dollars. SEC. 22. If any petitioner for the benefit of this act, against whose person proceedings for the collection of debts shall be stayed, and whose petition shall be pending, shall be committed to jail by his bail, such stay of proceedings shall not prevent the detention of such prisoner in jail, in the same manner as he would be detained, if no such stay of proceedings had been ordered. And if any such petitioner shall be surrendered in court by bail, said petitioner shall be committed to and be detained in jail in the same manner as if no such stay of proceedings had been granted. But any petitioner who shall be committed or surrendered by bail as aforesaid shall be discharged from jail on giving bond with sureties to the satisfaction of the sheriff of the county in which such petitioner shall be committed, if committed to any jail other than the jail in the county of Providence; and if committed to the jail in the county of Providence, then to the satisfaction of the keeper of said jail, conditioned to return to jail within ten days after the rising of the court at which the petition of such petitioner shall be finally disposed of, unless the petitioner shall be discharged by the court, and shall receive

a certificate thereof by order and under the seal of said


SEC. 23. The clerks of the supreme court for the respective counties shall respectively make and keep a correct record of all proceedings under this act; and shall receive the sum of one dollar from each petitioner, at the time the petition shall be filed, and such other compensation for his services as is allowed by law to clerks of said court; and shall also receive at the same time for and pay to the court, one dollar on each petition filed.

SEC. 24. Nothing in this act contained shall be considered or construed in any manner to invalidate or impair any proceedings heretofore had under the act passed June, A. D. one thousand seven hundred and fifty-six, entitled "an act for the relief of insolvent debtors," and the several acts heretofore passed in relation to such debtors, nor any discharge heretofore obtained in relation to such debtors, nor any discharge heretofore obtained in conformity to said act; but all such proceedings and discharges shall remain good and valid, and continue to have full force and effect in the same manner as if this act had not been passed.

An Act for quieting Possessions and avoiding Suits at Law.


1. Ancient grants ratified and confirmed. 2. Twenty years possession and claiming the same, to make a title-rights of


infants, &c., saved-also those in reversion or remainder.

Whereas at the first settling of this state, and for sundry years afterwards, lands were of little or no value, and skilful men in the law were much wanted, whereby many deeds, grants and conveyances were weakly made, which may occasion great contests in law if not timely prevented; therefore, It is enacted by the General Assembly, as follows:

SECTION 1. All grants, charters and conveyances heretofore made by the general assembly unto any town, corporation, community or propriety, or to any other person or persons whosoever, shall be, and they hereby are ratified and confirmed as good and effectual to all intents and purposes in law, for the conveying all such lands, tenements, rights, privileges and profits as are therein mentioned, to the said towns, corporations, communities, proprieties, person or persons, and to their respective successors, heirs and assigns for


SEC. 2. Where any person or persons or others from whom he or they derive their title, either by themselves, tenants or lessees, shall have been for the space of twenty years in the uninterrupted, quiet, peaceable and actual seizin and possession of any lands, tenements or hereditaments, for and during the said time, claiming the same as his, her or their proper, sole and rightful estate in fee simple, such actual seizin and possession shall be allowed to give and make a good and rightful title to such person or persons, their heirs and assigns for ever; and any plaintiff suing for the recovery of any such lands may rely upon such possession as conclusive title thereto; and this act being pleaded in bar to any action that shall hereafter be brought for such lands, tenements or hereditaments, and such actual seizin and possession being duly proved, shall be allowed to be good, valid and effectual in law for barring the same: provided, that nothing in this act shall be construed, deemed or taken to extend to prejudice the rights and claims of persons under age, non compos mentis, feme covert, or those imprisoned, or those beyond the limits of the United States; they bringing their suit therefor within the space of ten years next after such impediment is removed: provided further, that nothing above contained shall extend, or be construed or deemed to extend, to bar any person or persons having any estate in reversion or remainder, expectant or depending, in any lands, tenements or hereditaments, after the end or determination of the estate for years, life or lives; such person or persons pursuing his or their title by due course of law, within ten years after his or their right of action shall accrue; any thing in this act contained to the contrary notwithstanding.

An Act for the limitation of certain Personal Actions.


1. Certain actions to be brought within six years-others within four-others within two-covenant, &c., within twenty.

2. If defendant be without the state, &c.,


when suit may be commenced. 3. If plaintiff be under age, &c. 4. Case of the death of either party. 5. Case of abatement, or arrest of judg


It is enacted by the General Assembly, as follows:

SECTION 1. All actions of trespass, trespass and ejectment, detinue or replevin; all actions of account and upon the case, except on such accounts as concern trade or merchandize between merchant and merchant, their factors or

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