A Memorial and Biographical History of Navarro, Henderson, Anderson, Limestone, Freestone and Leon Counties, Texas Page: 66
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HISTORY OF NAVARRO, HENDERSON, ANDERSON,
to reassemble on December 7th. When it
again met, the differences appeared to be
more irreconcilable than ever, and much
bitterness of feeling was shown. Finally,
the more liberal party prevailed, the late
Governor Hamilton having submitted a
generous substitute on the right of suffrage
for the report of the committee,
which was marked by rigorous disfranchisement.
The substitute having been
put to the vote, it was carried, February
3, 1869, by thirty-seven yeas against
The constitution was now all but completed;
but on the 4th the "ab-initio"
members entered into a protest against it,
signed by twenty-two members, among
whom was the president, Davis. The objection
raised against it was that it was
based upon the assumption that the Constitution
of the United States and the accepted
constitution of Texas of 1845, had
not been continuously the supreme law of
the land. With regard to the article on
the right of suffrage, the disapproving
members solemnly protested against it as
extending the franchise to all those who
voluntarily became the public enemy of
the United States.
This session of the convention did not
terminate in a very dignified manner.
Without waiting for a formal and orderly
adjournment, many members forthwith
returned to their homes, and at the meeting
on the 6th no quorum was present.
On February 11th General Canby, who
had succeeded Reynolds in the preceding
December, addressed a letter to the chief
of the staff at Washington, in which he
says that a committee had been appointed
by the members that were left to consult
him. On finding that a large portion of
the records of the convention was in an unfinisled
condition, the journal not being
made up, the other work of the secretary
and clerks incomplete, he advised that the
members present should finish the ministerial
work, and then adjourn in a formal
and orderly manner. He describes the
feelings of the two parties as growing
more intense, each distrusting the other,
and apprehending that the records would
be lost or destroyed. He urged upon the
president, Davis, the importance of his
party uniting with the other,-at least let
them adjourn in a decorous manner, if
they could do nothing else. Davis accordingly
called a meeting, at which less
than a half dozen members were present,
and Canby finally agreed to take charge of
the records. He experienced, however, no
little difficulty in collecting them, as the
secretaries and clerks of the convention
had become imbued with the spirit of the
members, and had taken away a part of
the records in their keeping. Having
finally succeeded, he set a large clerical
force to work to complete them from the
rough copies and minutes.
By the election declaration of the convention,
the first Monday in July, 1869,
was appointed as the day on which the
amended constitution should be submitted
to the voters for ratification, and a general
election held for State officers and mem.
bers of the legislature. But President
Grant did not see fit to approve so early a
date, and deferred it till November 30,
following. Accordingly, on that and the
three following days, the election was held
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Lewis Publishing Company. A Memorial and Biographical History of Navarro, Henderson, Anderson, Limestone, Freestone and Leon Counties, Texas, book, 1893; Chicago, Illinois. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth46827/m1/68/: accessed May 27, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Palestine Public Library.