Brewer v. Mayor

Decision Date29 August 1888
PartiesBREWER et al. v. MAYOR et al.
CourtTennessee Supreme Court

Appeal from chancery court, Carroll county; JOHN SOMERS, Chancellor.

J. R Hawkins, for complainants. W W. Murray and G. T. McCall, for defendants.


The only question which arises for determination in this case is the constitutionality of the act of 1887, repealing the act incorporating the town of Huntingdon, and its amendments. The act in question, which is published with the others of that session, is found on page 232, Acts 1887. It appears to have been passed the 17th March, and approved the 24th, to take effect the 1st of May following. The house and senate journals show the following steps taken in reference to the act. It was introduced in the house as "House Bill No 408," and there passed its first reading January 27 1887, its second, February the 12th, and its third on the 21st of February, 1887. House Journal, pp. 335, 397, 531. Transmitted to the senate, it passed there on its first and second reading, February 22d and 23d. Senate Journal, pp 394, 400. After passage, on second reading, it was referred to the committee on corporations. Page 400. March the 3d the committee reported the bill to the senate, and recommended its passage on third reading. Page 461.

It was again referred to same committee on same day. Page 471. Subsequently, on the 17th of March, the committee again reported the bill to the senate, and recommended its rejection. Page 619. In the evening session of the same day, as appears in the journal entry, which we copy in full, "on motion of Mr. Long, the senate proceeded to the consideration of house bills, on their third reading, of a purely local nature,--house bill No. 408, to abolish the charter of the town of Huntingdon. The report of the committee on corporations, which recommends the rejection of the bill, was concurred in, and the bill was rejected." Page 628. On the 18th of March the clerk of the senate transmitted it to the house, and reported its rejection by the senate. House Journal, p. 849. The same day the bill is reported to the house, by the committee on enrolled bills, as "properly enrolled, and ready to be signed." Page 861. This report was made to the afternoon session, during which the speaker announced that he had signed house bill No. 408, with others, and this was noted on the journal. Page 864. The next day, March 19th, it was transmitted to the senate for signature of the speaker of the senate, by the clerk of the house, and so reported. Senate Journal, p. 660. And on same day the speaker of the senate announced that he had signed the bill, and such entry was made upon the journal. Page 660. The bill was thereafter (24th March) returned to the house, with a message from the governor, announcing its approval. House Journal, p. 951.

If all the entries in the journal can be looked to, it appears affirmatively that this bill was rejected. But it is most earnestly argued that section 18 of article 2 of the constitution, which requires, among other things, that a bill, after being passed, shall be "signed by the respective speakers, in open session, the fact of such signing to be noted on the journal," is the only mandatory provision for a journal entry; and when such entries appear on the journals of both houses, as in this case, all inquiry is cut off, and any affirmative proceeding irregularity, or omission is cured or supplied, and the bill must be conclusively held to have passed as required by the constitution. This view is plausible, and is supported by much persuasive authority in other states; but we do not assent to its correctness. The constitution of this state requires the keeping of a journal by each house, in which its proceedings shall be written, and that it shall be published. Article 2, § 21. There is no provision which in terms gives one entry a force and validity superior to another, and we cannot undertake to do so by...

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9 cases
  • Union Bank of Richmond v. Commissioners of Town of Oxford
    • United States
    • North Carolina Supreme Court
    • November 17, 1896
    ... ... 901 ... Louisiana: Hollingsworth v. Thompson, 45 La. Ann ... 223, 12 So. 1. Maryland: Berry v. Railroad Co., 41 ... Md. 446; Legg v. Mayor, etc., 42 Md. 203. Michigan: ... Southworth v. Railroad Co., 2 Mich. 287; Green ... v. Graves, 1 Doug. 351; People v. Township Board of ... La ... St. 446 ... South Carolina: Bond Debt Cases, 12 S.C. 200; State v ... Hagood, 13 S.C. 46. Tennessee: Williams v. State, 6 ... Lea, 549; Brewer v. Huntingdon, 86 Tenn. 732, 9 ... S.W. 166; State v. Algood, 87 Tenn. 163, 10 S.W ... 310; Nelson v. Haywood Co., 91 Tenn. 596, 20 S.W. 1 ... ...
  • Atchison, T. & S. F. Ry. Co. v. State
    • United States
    • Oklahoma Supreme Court
    • January 24, 1911
    ... ... 462; State v. Rogers, 22 Or. 349, 30 P ... 74; State v. McConnell, 3 Lea (Tenn.) 332; ... Gaines v. Horrigan, 4 Lea (Tenn.) 608; Brewer v ... Huntingdon, 86 Tenn. 732, 9 S.W. 166; Ritchie v ... Richards et al., 14 Utah, 345, 47 P. 670; Wise v ... Bigger et al., 79 Va. 269; ... ...
  • Webb v. Carter
    • United States
    • Tennessee Supreme Court
    • February 14, 1914
    ... ... constitutional defect in the manner of the legislation. Such ... is the effect of our decisions. Brewer v. State, 86 ... Tenn. 732, 737, 9 S.W. 166; State v. Algood, 87 ... Tenn. 163, 168, 10 S.W. 310; Nelson v. Haywood Co., ... 91 Tenn. 596, ... with the writ running in the name of one of the great cities ... of the state? But this court has said, no, such a writ is ... void. Mayor and Aldermen v. Pearl, 11 Humph. 249, ... 250. Why could it not run in the name of one of the courts of ... the state? This court has said such a ... ...
  • Southern Ry. Co. v. City of Memphis
    • United States
    • Tennessee Supreme Court
    • June 11, 1912
    ... ...          "'Said ... park commission shall have entire charge and control of the ... sale of said bonds, and the mayor and city register shall ... execute and deliver the same when called upon so to do by ... said park commission.' ...          "Section ... State, 116 Tenn. 71, 93 S.W. 73. See, also, Williams ... v. State, 6 Lea, 549; State v. McConnell, 3 ... Lea, 332; Brewer v. Huntingdon, 86 Tenn. 732, 9 ... S.W. 166; State v. Algood, 87 Tenn. 163, 10 S.W ... 310; Nelson v. Haywood, 91 Tenn. 596, 20 S.W. 1; ... ...
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