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eral throughout the State toward all new-comers without discrimination.*
In Camden the selectmen were authorized to warn out all new-comers who had not been admitted by the town authorities to be inhabitants. The record shows that January 2, 1792, twenty-two persons were thus warned out of town. Among the number were several who afterwards became among the first citizens of the town.†.
In Castine one of the first acts of the town, after its incorporation in 1796, was to warn a woman to depart, and a few weeks later to warn out five other persons. These are said to have been the only cases of warning out in Castine, which was created from a portion of the town of Penobscot, but the records of Penobscot show that warning out was practised there. In 1790 fifty persons were warned to depart the town. I
In Durham, incorporated 1789, the town at once began to warn out all new-comers, and continued the practice for some time. Three persons were warned out in 1791, but remained and were good citizens. The following from the town records of 1793 illustrates the course of procedure:
Cumberland Ss to Benjamin Vining Constable for the said Town of Durham ............... GREETING You are in the name of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts directed To warn, and give notice unto Samuel Jordan, Jedediah Jordan, Daniel Roberson, Paul Dyer of Cape Elizabeth ... John Stackpole, Jeremiah Smith, James Johnson of Harpswell, Daniel Harmon of Standish, Elias Davis of Bakerstown, Ezekiel Turner of Freeport, and Samuel Proctor of Plymouth Labourers in the Town of Durham and County of Cumberland,
* Eaton, History of Thomaston, p. 172.
† Camden Town Records, pp. 22, 28, 39, cited by Locke, History of Camden, p. 69.
Wheeler, History of Castine, pp. 69, 74.
Which above named persons, has lately come into this Town for the Purpose of abiding therein, not having obtained the Towns consent. Therefore that they depart the Limits thereof, With their Children And others under their care, if any they have, within fifteen days. And of this precept, with your doings thereon, you are to make Return into the office of the Town, within Twenty days next Coming, that such further proceedings may be had in the premises, As the law directs. ... Given under our hands and Seal, at Durham aforesaid this 25 day of February A.D. 1793.
NATHANIEL GARISH | Select
AARON OSGOOD s men Attest
MARTIN ROURK, Town Clerk Pursuant to the within Warrant, I have warned those persons within mentioned To Depart the Limits of the Town As soon as may be, or within fifteen days, from the date thereof.
BENJAMIN VINING Constable
A true copy
This warning out of all new-comers is probably to be accounted for by the fact that there was much immigration into the new and poor towns at that time.
One provision of the Constitution of Maine, adopted October 29, 1819, was that all laws then in force, not repugnant to the Constitution then adopted, should remain in force until altered or repealed by the Legislature, or until they should expire by their own limitation.t
In 1821 a Settlement Act was passed, differing somewhat from the Massachusetts Act. It did not provide for warning out in any form, and, as the Massachusetts law did not then provide for warning, there was never any statute providing for warning out in
* Stackpole, History of Durham, p. 24. † Constitution of Maine, Article 10, Section 3.
the State of Maine. The Act of 1821 omitted the provision in the Massachusetts Act for the settlement of settled and ordained ministers, but provided that a person could be admitted an inhabitant of any town at a town meeting the warrant for which contained an article for that purpose. The further provisions of the Act were in substance:
1. That all persons dwelling and having their homes in any unincorporated places, when the same should be incorporated into a town, should thereby gain a legal settlement in the town.
2. That legal settlements, in case of new towns or division of towns, should be in the new town within the boundaries of which the persons actually dwelt and had their homes.
3. That any minor who should serve an apprenticeship to any lawful trade for four years in any town, and actually set up his trade therein within one year after the expiration of such four years, and was then twenty-one years of age, should thereby have a settlement in such town.
4. That any person twenty-one years of age, who should reside in any town for five years together, and not during that time, directly or indirectly, receive supplies or support as a pauper from any town, should gain a settlement.
5. That any person resident in a town at the date of the passage of the Act, who should not within one year previous to that date have received support or supplies from some town as a pauper, should be deemed to have a settlement in the town where he then dwelt and had his home.
The Act also declared that every legal settlement when gained should continue until lost or defeated by gaining a new one, and that, upon gaining such new
settlement, all former settlements should be defeated and lost.*
In Vermont, which was an independent State until 1791, the right of towns to exclude strangers was recognized and established in 1787 by the following Act of the General Assembly:
An Act for the ordering and disposing of transient persons.
Be it enacted, and it is hereby enacted, by the representatives of the freemen of the State of Vermont, in General Assembly met, and by the authority of the same, that the select-men of each respective town in this State, shall be, and are hereby, authorised and impowered to warn any transient person (residing in such town, that is not of a quiet and peaceable behaviour, or is, in their opinion, like to be chargable to such town) to depart out of such town, except such person does obtain a vote of the inhabitants of such town, in legal town meeting, to remain in such town; and if any such person or persons, being so warned, do not leave such town within twenty days after such warning, then one or more of said select-men may make application to an assistant or justice of the peace, who is hereby impowered to issue his warrant to the sheriff or constable to take such person or persons, and transport him or them to the next town, towards the place where such person was last an inhabitant;—in the same manner to be transported to the place where such person or persons were inhabitants last, or in the same way, out of this State, if he be not an inhabitant thereof; and all such expence shall be paid by the person or persons so warned, if of ability, but if he is not of ability, to be paid by such town.
PROVIDED ALWAYS, that no person shall be subject to such warning, after he or she has lived in such town one year.
BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, BY THE AUTHORITY AFORESAID, that if any transient person or persons shall be taken sick or lame, in any town in this State; whoever shall keep any such person or persons (if such transient, sick or lame person or persons be not of sufficient ability) shall defray all such expense, until complaint thereof be by him made to the select-men of such town; after
* Laws of the State of Maine, 1821, Chap. 122.
which, such select-men shall provide for such transient, sick, or lame person, according to law.*
At the same session an Act was passed for maintaining and supporting the poor. This Act first provided “that each town in this State shall take care of, support, and maintain their own poor.”
And the Act also provided that if any person or persons shall come to live in any town in this State, and be there received and entertained, by the space of twelve months; and if, by sickness, lameness, or the like, he or they come to want relief, every such person or persons shall be provided for by that town wherein he or they were so long entertained, at said town's own proper cost and charge, unless such person or persons by law are to be provided for by some particular person or persons; or unless such person or persons wanting relief, have, within the said twelve months, been warned as the law directs, to depart and leave the place: and if such warning be given, and the same be certified to the next superior court to be held in the same county, the said court shall and may otherwise order the defraying the charge arising about such indigent person or persons.t
March 9, 1787, an Act was passed entitled “An Act providing for and ordering transient, idle, impotent and poor persons.”
This Act provided “that each town in this State shall take care of, support and maintain its own poor.”
And also provided “that no persons shall gain a settlement in any town in this State, and be liable to be supported thereby, unless such person was born therein, or has owned or shall own estate in such town of the value of two hundred pounds clear of all demands against him, or her, or of the yearly value of ten pounds." I
March 3, 1797, an Act was passed “defining what shall be deemed and adjudged a legal settlement, and
* Vermont Laws, February, 1779. Vermont State Papers, p. 315.