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prescribed in this constitution, to consist of one chief justice and three associate justices, to be chosen by the electors of the State. Such supreme court, when so organized, shall not be changed or discontinued by the Legislature for eight years thereafter. The judges thereof shall be so classified that but one of them shall go out of office at the same time. Their term of office shall be eight years.

§ 3. The supreme court shall have a general superintending control over all inferior courts, and shall have power to issue writs of error, habeas corpus, mandamus, quo warranto, procedendo, and other original and remedial writs, and to hear and determine the same. In all other cases it shall have appellate jurisdiction only.

§ 4. Four terms of the supreme court shall be held annually, at

such times and places as may be designated by law. Rules, &c. $ 5. The supreme court shall, by general rules, establish, modify

and amend the practice in such court and in the circuit courts, and simplify the same. The Legislature shall, as far as practicable, abol

ish distinctions between law and equity proceedings. The office of chancery prohibited. master in chancery is prohibited.

$ 6. The State shall be divided into eight judicial circuits; in each of which the electors thereof shall elect one circuit judge, who shall hold his office for the term of six years, and until his successor is elected and qualified.

§ 7. The Legislature may alter the limits of circuits or increase the number of the same. No alteration or increase shall have the effect to remove a judge from office. In every additional circuit established the judge shall be elected by the electors of such circuit, and his term of office shall continue as provided in this constitution for judges of the circuit court.

$ 8. The circuit courts shall have original jurisdiction in all matters, civil and criminal, not excepted in this constitution, and not prohibited by law; and appellate jurisdiction from all inferior courts and tribunals, and a supervisory control of the same. They shall also have power to issue writs of habeas corpus, mandamus, injunction, quo warranto, certiorari and other writs necessary to carry into effect their orders, judgments and decrees, and give them a general control over inferior courts and tribunals within their respective jurisdic. tions.

Judicial cir.


Powers, &c.


Terms of

$ 9. Each of the judges of the circuit courts shall receive a salary Salary of

judges. payable quarterly. They shall be ineligible to any other than a judicial office during the term for which they are elected, and for one year thereafter. All votes for any person elected such judge for any office other than judicial, given either by the Legislature or the people, shall be void.

§ 10. The supreme court may appoint a reporter of its decisions. Reporter of The decisions of the supreme court shall be in writing, and signed by the judges concurring therein. Any judge dissenting therefrom, shall give the reasons of such dissent in writing, under his signature. All such opinions shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the supreme court. The judges of the circuit court, within their respec- how filled

Vacancies; tive jurisdictions, may fill vacancies in the office of county clerk and of prosecuting attorney; but no judge of the supreme court, or cireuit court, shall exercise any other power of appointment to public office.

$ 11. A circuit court shall be held at least twice in each year in every county organized for judicial purposes, and four times in each circuit year in counties containing ten thousand inhabitants. Judges of the eircuit court may hold courts for each other, and shall do so when required by law.

$ 12. The clerk of each county organized for judicial purposes shall be the clerk of the circuit court of such county, and of the su- tuit court. preme court, when held within the same. $ 13. In each of the counties organized for judicial purposes, there courts or

probate. shall be a court of probate. The judge of such court shall be elected by the electors of the county in which he resides, and shall hold his office for four years, and until his successor is elected and qualified. The jurisdiction, powers and duties of such court shall be prescribed by law. $ 14. When a vacancy occurs in the office of judge of the su- Vacancies;

how, filled preme, circuit or probate court, it shall be filled by appointment of the Governor, which shall continue until a successor is elected and qualified. When elected, such successor shall hold his office the residue of the unexpired term.

$ 15. The supreme court, the circuit and probate courts of each courts of county, shall be courts of record, and shall each have a common seal.

Clerk of cir. Circuit court com.


Justices of

the pease;


$ 16. The Legislature may provide by law for the election of one missioners. or more persons in each organized county, who may be vested with

judicial powers, not exceeding those of a judge of the circuit court at chambers.

$ 17. There shall be not exceeding four justices of the peace in bow elected, each organized township. They shall be elected by the electors of

the townships, and shall hold their offices for four years, and until their successors are elected and qualified. At the first election in any township, they shall be classified as shall be prescribed by law. A justice elected to fill a vacancy shall hold his office for the residue of the unexpired term. The Legislature may increase the number justices in cities.

$ 18. In civil cases justices of the peace shall have exclusive juJurisdiction of justices. risdiction to the amount of one hundred dollars, and concurrent ju

risdiction to the amount of three hundred dollars, which may be increased to five hundred dollars, with such exceptions and restrictions as may be provided by law. They shall also have such criminal jurisdiction and perform such duties as shall be prescribed by the Legislature.

$ 19. Judges of the supreme court circuit judges, and justices of the

peace, shall be conservators of the peace within their respective jurisdictions.

§ 20. The first election of judges of the circuit courts, shall be judges.

held on the first Monday in April, one thousand eight hundred and fifty-one, and every sixth year thereafter. Whenever an additional circuit is created, provision shall be made to hold the subsequent election of such additional judges at the regular election herein provided.

$ 21. The first election of judges of the probate courts shall be judges of held on the Tuesday succeeding the first Monday of November, one probate.

thousand eight hundred and fifty-two, and every fourth year thereafter.

§ 22. Whenever a judge shall remove beyond the limits of the ed vacancy.

jurisdiction for which he was elected, or a justice of the peace from the township in which he was elected, or by a change in the bounda. ries of such township shall be placed without the same, they shall be deemed to have vacated their respective offices.

Conserva tors of the peace.

Election of circuit

Pection of

Wher deem

Courts of conciliation.

appear by

in person.

may given in evidence.

from rearch and seizure.

$ 23. The Legislature may establish courts of conciliation, with such powers and duties as shall be prescribed by law.

§ 24. Any suitor in any court of this state shall have the right Suitors may to prosecute or defend his suit, either in his own proper person, or attorney or by an attorney or agent of his cheice.

§ 25. In all prosecutions for libels, the truth may be given in evi- Libels tratha dence to the jury; and if it shall appear to the jury that the matter charged as libellous, is true, and was published with good motives and for justifiable ends, the party shall be acquitted. The jury shall have the right to determine the law and the fact.

§ 26. The person, houses, papers and possessions of every person Security shall be secure from unreasonable searches and seizures. No warTant to search any place or to seize any person or things, shall issue without describing them, nor without probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation. $ 27. The right of trial by jury shall remain, but shall be deemed

Rightoftrial to be waived in all civil cases unless demanded by one of the par

by jury. ties, in such manner as shall be prescribed by law. $ 28. In every criminal prosecution, the accused shall have the accused to

have speedy right to a speedy and public trial by an impartial jury, which may trial, &c. consist of less than twelve men in all courts not of record; to be informed of the nature of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and have the assistance of counsel for his defence. $ 29. No person, after acquittal upon the merits, shall be tried for Acquittal

upon merite. the same offence; all persons shall, before conviction, be bailable by sufficient sureties, except for murder and treason, when the proof is evident or the presumption great.

$ 30. Treason against the State shall consist only in levying war against [it] or in adhering to its enemies, giving them aid and comfort. No

person shall be convicted of treason unless upon the testimony of two witnesses to the same overt act, or on confession in open court. § 31. Excessive bail shall not be required; excessive fines shall

Bail,&c. not be imposed; cruel or unusual punishment shall not be inflicted, nor shall witnesses be unreasonably detained.


No person compellid to testify a. gainst him. self.

for dobe.

nf witnesses.


tion of electore.

§ 32. No person shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty or property,

without due process of law. Imprisonm't

§ 33. No person shall be imprisoned for debt arising out of or founded on a contract, express or implied, except in cases of fraud or

breach of trust, or of moneys collected by public officers or in any Militia fines. professional employment. No person shall be imprisoned for a mili

tia fine in time of peace. Competency

$ 34. No person shall be rendered incompetent to be a witness on

account of his opinions on matters of religious belief. Style of pro. $ 35. The style of all process shall be: “In the name of the people of the State of Michigan.”


ELECTIONS. § 1. In all elections every white male citizen, erery white male inQualificac habitant residing in the State on the twenty-fourth day of June, one

thousand eight hundred and thirty-five; every white male inhabitant residing in this State on the first day of January, one thousand eight hundred and fifty, who has declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States, pursuant to the laws thereof, six months preceding an election, or who has resided in this State two years and six months, and declared his intention as aforesaid, and every civilized male inhabitant of Indian descent, a native of the United States and not a member of any tribe, shall be an elector and entitled to vote; but no citizen or inhabitant shall be an elector, or entitled to vote at any election, unless he shall be above the age of twenty-one years, and has resided in this State three months, and in the township or ward in which he offers to vote, ten days next preceding such election.

§ 2. All votes shall be given by ballot, except for such township by ballot.

officers as may be authorized by law to be otherwise chosen. Privilege of

$ 3. Every elector, in all cases, except treason, felony, or breach of the peace, shall be privileged from arrest during his attendance at election, and in going to and returning from the same.

§ 4. No elector shall be obliged to do militia duty on the day of From mili

election, except in time of war or public danger, or attend court as a suitor or witness.


Votes to be

electors troin arrest.

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