In force Feb.[February] 12, 1835.
AN ACT to incorporate the subscribers to the Bank of the State of Illinois.1
Capital stock, $1,500,000.
Sec[Section]. 1. Be it enacted by the people of the State of Illinois, represented in the General Assembly, That a Bank of the State of Illinois shall be established, the capital shock whereof shall be one million five hundred thousand dollars, to be divided into shares of one hundred dollars each; one million four hundred thousand dollars of said capital stock to be subscribed by individuals, [and] one hundred thousand shall be reserved, and may be subscribed for by the State of Illinois whenenever the Legislature thereof may deem it proper to subscribe the whole or such parts thereof, as the condition of the Treasury may justify.2
May be increased.
Sec. 2. The said capital stock may hereafter be increased by individual subscriptions, to an amount not exceeding one million of dollars, to be subscribed for and taken under the direction of the President and Directors of this Corporation, in the same manner as herein provided for the subscription to the original capital stock.
Subscribers to the stock incorporated.
Extent of corporation.
Sec. 3. All persons who shall become holders of the capital stock of said Bank, pursuant to this act, shall be and they are hereby constituted a body corporate, by the name of the President, Directors and Company of the State Bank of Illinois; and such Corporation shall continue until the first day of January, in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty, and by that name, shall be competent to contract and be contracted with, sue and be sued, plead and be impleaded, answer and be answered unto, defend and be defended, in all courts and places, and in all matters whatsoever.
Nature of the incorporation.
Sec. 4. The said corporation shall have power to carry on the business of banking, by discounting bills, notes, and other evidences of debt, by receiving deposites, and making all other contracts involving the interest or uses of money; by buying or selling gold and silver bullion, foreign coins and bills of exchange, by issuing bills, notes, or other evidences of debt, and by exercising such other incidental powers as shall be necessary to carry on all such business.
Real estate to be held by said Bank.
Sec. 5. The real estate which it shall be lawful for said Bank to purchase, hold and convey, shall be—1st. Such as shall be required for its immediate accomodation in the transaction of its business, or such as shall have been mortgaged to it in good faith by way of security for loans previously contracted, or for moneys due; or—3d. Such as shall have been conveyed to it in satisfaction of debts previously contracted in the course of its dealings; or—4th.
<Page 2>Such as shall have been purchased at sales upon judgments, decrees or mortgages, obtained or made for such debts; and said Bank shall not purchase, hold or convey real estate in [any] other case, or for any other purchase; and all such real estate, not absolutely necessary for the convenient discharge of its business, shall be set up at least once a year at public sale, and if the sum offered therefor, shall be sufficient to reimburse the principal and interest of the debt for which it was taken by said corporation, it shall be absolutely sold.
Prohibited from dealing in merchandize.
Sec. 6. The said corporation shall not, directly or indirectly, deal or trade in buying or selling any goods, wares or merchandize, or commodities whatever.
May have a common seal.
Sec. 7. The said corporation may have and use a common seal—the same alter, break, change or renew at pleasure, and may also make, ordain and establish and put in execution such by-laws, ordinances, rules and regulations, as shall be necessary for the good government of the said Bank, and the prudent and efficient management of its affairs. No by-laws, ordinances, rules and regulations of the same, shall be in any wise contrary to the Constitution and Laws of this State, or of the United States.
Principal bank, where located.
Sec. 8. The principal Bank of said corporation, shall be located at Springfield, and an office of Discount and Deposite as a Branch thereof, shall be established at Vandalia; and the President and Directors aforesaid, may establish and discontinue such other offices of Discount and Deposite as Branches within this State, whenever the interest of the community or Bank require it, in number not exceeding six, for the purpose of discount and deposite, and the transaction of such other business as may be legally confided to them under the provisions of this act; and to commit the management of all of the aforesaid branches under such regulations, as they shall from time to time deem prudent and necessary to adopt, to such number of persons as they shall choose.
Commissioners to receive subscriptions to capital stock.
Sec. 9. For procuring subscriptions for said capital stock, John Tillson, jr., Robert K. McLaughlin, Daniel Wann, A. G. S. Wight, John C. Riley, Wm. H. Davidson, Edward M. Wilson3, Edward L. Pierson, Robert R. Green, Ezra Baker, jr., Aquilla Wren, John Taylor, Samuel C. Christie, Edmund Roberts, Benjamin Godfrey, Thomas Mather, A. M. Jenkins, Wm. Linn, W. S. Gilman, Charles Prentice, Richard I. Hamilton, A. H. Buckner, Wm. F. Thornton and Edmund D. Taylor,4 are appointed commissioners to receive all subscriptions therefor, and said commissioners, or a majority of them, shall first open in this State, one or more subscription books for said stock, on such days and at such places as they shall deem expedient; and shall, for
<Page 3>such purpose, appoint a day, giving at least thirty days previous notice of such time and place in one or more of the newspapers printed at the seat of government of this State or elsewhere;5 and if the whole of the capital stock herein authorized to be subscribed for, shall not be taken within twenty days after the books shall be opened as aforesaid, the said commissioners or a majority of them, shall open other books on such days and at such places as they shall deem expedient, giving at least twenty days notice of the time and place of re-opening said books, in one or more of the newspapers printed at or near the place of re-opening said books.
Length of time for books to be kept open.
Sec. 10. The books for subscription shall be kept open until all the original stock to be subscribed by individuals shall have been taken, and the sum of ten dollars on each share subscribed for, shall be paid to the said commissioners at the time of making such subscription; such payments shall be made in specie, bills of the Bank of the United States, or certificates of deposite in any of the Deposite Banks of the United States, in New York or Philadelphia. As soon as the Directors shall have been chosen, and the commissioners hereby appointed shall have been notified of their election, they shall pay over the whole amount of subscription severally paid to, and received by them in the same description of moneys so by them received, into the hands of the President and Directors of the said corporation, taking their receipts therefor, to be delivered over to the Cashier of said corporation as soon as he shall have given bond according to law: Provided, That if, on closing the books, it shall be found that more than one million four hundred thousand dollars have been subscribed, the excess shall be taken first from such as reside out of this State, then from corporations; and should there still be an excess, the same shall be taken in proportion from the subscriptions over one thousand dollars, until all are reduced to that amount; then from all equally, until the whole amount shall not exceed one million four hundred thousand dollars.6
Concerns of said bank, how managed.
Sec. 11. The stock, property and prudential concerns of said corporation, shall be conducted by nine directors, being stockholders and citizens of this State, but no person shall be a director who shall not at the time of his appointment hold at least ten shares of the stock of the incorporation.
Election of directors, when and where to be held.
Sec. 12. The election of directors under this act, shall be held at such time and place in the town of Springfield, as shall be directed by the said commissioners, who, or a majority of whom, are hereby appointed inspectors of the first election; and the persons then elected as directors, shall hold their offices until the second Tuesday of June, 1836, and until others are elected.
Shall be elected annually thereafter.
Sec. 13. The directors for every subsequent year, shall be elected on the second Tuesday of June in every year, at such time of the day, and at such place within the town of Springfield, and under the direction of such persons as a majority of the directors, for the time being, shall, by a resolution to be entered on their minutes, appoint, and shall hold their offices for one year, or until others are elected in their stead.
Number of votes that each stockholder shall be entitled to.
Sec. 14. After the first election, no stockholder who shall not have held his stock for which he votes, for three calendar months previous to the day of election, shall be entitled to vote, and the number of votes to which such stockholders shall be entitled in voting for directors, shall be in the proportion following—that is to say, for each and every share, not exceeding four shares, one vote; for every two shares above four and not exceeding thirty, one vote; for every four shares above thirty and not exceeding ninety, one vote; for every six shares above ninety and not exceeding one hundred and fifty, one vote; and for every ten shares above one hundred and fifty, one vote. But no person, co-partnership, or corporation, shall be entitled to a greater number than one hundred votes. In all elections for directors, votes may be given either in person or by proxy; but no person shall vote by proxy more than one hundred votes, and no individual stockholder who shall be a resident of the county where the election is to be held at the time of such election, shall vote by proxy unless in case of unavoidable absence, except females or minors: Provided, no President, Cashier, or other officer of said Bank or Branches thereof, shall be permitted to vote at any election for directors as the attorney, agent or proxy of any stockholder: Provided, also, that no President, Cashier or Director of the Bank shall, during the term of his office, be eligible to a seat in either branch of the General Assembly of this State.7
Election to be by ballot.
In case two or more have an equal number of votes.
Sec. 15. All elections shall be by ballot, and the nine persons who shall have greatest number of votes, shall be the Directors; and if at any election two or more persons have an equal number of votes for directors, then the directors who shall have been duly elected, shall proceed by ballot, and by plurality of votes determine which of the said persons so having an equal number of votes, shall be director or directors, so as to complete the whole number; and if any director shall cease to be a stockholder to the amount of ten shares, his office shall be vacant; and whenever any vacancy shall happen among the directors, from such or any other cause, such vacancy shall be filled for the remainder of the year in which it shall happen, by the directors, for the time being, or a majority of them.
Election of president.
Sec. 16. The directors elected, as soon as may be after their election, shall proceed to choose by ballot, one of their number to be their President, who shall preside in the board until the next annual election; and in case of his death or resignation, they may proceed to fill the vacancy created thereby for the residue of his term. They shall have power to appoint a Cashier and all subordinate officers of the said corporation, fix their compensation, define their powers, and prescribe their duties; who shall give such bonds and in such penal sums, with such conditions, and with such securities as the directors shall prescribe, and hold their several offices during the pleasure of a majority of said directors.
General meetings of stockholders, when held.
Sec. 17. That a general meeting of the stockholders shall be held on the second Monday of June, 1836, and on the second Monday of June annually, thereafter, at the time and place of holding the election for directors; and the directors for the year immediately preceding, shall present an exact and particular statement of the state, condition, and affairs of said Bank; and the stockholders present, shall have power to examine into all matters connected with said Bank, its pecuniary concerns and general welfare, and to adopt such measures as shall appear to them needful and proper, touching the management of said corporation and its effects, as shall not be inconsistent with the provisions of this charter.
Authorized to borrow money.
May loan the same.
Sec. 18. The said corporation shall have power to receive on deposite, or borrow at such rate of interest as may be agreed upon, any sum of money not exceeding one million of dollars, and the same to loan on bond and mortgage of unincumbered real estate within the State; but no loan on such real estate shall be made in any case for more than one half of the appraised value thereof, for a term of time not exceeding five years, and at no higher rate of interest than ten per centum per annum.
When to commence business.
Sec. 19. The said corporation shall not commence business until two hundred and fifty thousand dollars of the capital stock shall have been paid to said corporation in specie; and as soon as such payment shall have been made, the said directors shall notify the Governor of this State that they are ready to commence business; and thereupon, the said Governor shall appoint some suitable person or persons, to examine and count the money paid in on account of said capital stock, and then being actually in the vaults or possession of said corporation, whose duty it shall be, at the expense of said corporation, to make such examination, and ascertain by the oath of the President and Cashier of the said corporation, that the said capital has been, bona fide, paid in by the stockholders of the said
<Page 6>corporation, in payment of instalments under the regulations of this charter, and for no other purpose whatever, and that it has actually been received as part of said capital stock; and thereupon, such person or persons so appointed by the Governor, shall forthwith make due return of such examination, and the facts connected therewith, to the Governor; and when the return shall be made to him, as aforesaid, that the said sum of two hundred and fifty thousand dollars of the capital stock of the said corporation has been paid in and actually exists in the vaults in possession of said corporation, he shall cause proclamation to be made of the same, which shall be published, at the expense of the said corporation, in at least four of the newspapers printed in this State; and on the first publication of such proclamation, it shall be lawful for the said corporation to commence business, and not before.
Directors to require payment of sums subscribed and unpaid.
Sec. 20. The directors shall have power to require the stockholders, respectively, to make payment of all sums of money by them subscribed and remaining unpaid, at such times and in such proportion as such directors shall see fit, under the pain of the forfeiture of the share upon which such payments are required, and all previous payments thereon, to the said corporation.
Shall give notice of such payments.
Sec. 21. The directors shall give notice of every such call by notice, to be published at least once a week, for eight weeks successively, in two or more newspapers in this State, one of which shall be at the seat of government of this State; which notice, so to be published, shall be a sufficient call on such stockholders to authorize, in case of default to comply therewith, the forfeiture above provided.
All evidences of debt obligatory on said corporation.
Sec. 22. The obligations, contracts, bills, notes and other evidences of debt, made or issued by the said corporation, and being assignable and negotiable in like manner as if made or issued by a private person; and those payable to bearer by delivery; and every evidence of debt assigned by the said corporation by endorsement thereon, shall enable the assignee thereof to maintain an action thereupon in his own name; but every note, bill or evidence of debt, purporting to be a bank note to be issued by the said corporation, shall be deemed and taken to be payable at the banking house of the said corporation, unless otherwise specified on its face.
Rates of interest allowed.
Sec. 23. It shall be lawful for the said corporation, and they are hereby authorized, to demand and receive, for all sums of money loaned by them, the following rates of interest, to wit: On loans for sixty days or under, at the rate of six per cent. per annum; on loans over six months and under twelve, eight per cent. per annum: Provided, That
<Page 7>the interest may be taken in advance and in accordance with the usual practice of banking institutions.8
Notes in circulation not to exceed twice and a half the capital stock.
Sec. 24. The said corporation shall not issue or have in circulation at any time an amount of notes or bills put in circulation as money, exceeding twice and a half of its capital stock paid in and possessed, exclusive of the sums due on deposites; nor shall its loans and discounts at any time exceed three times the amount of such stock, exclusive of the deposites as aforesaid; and in case of excess, the directors, under whose administration it shall have happened, shall be liable in their natural and private capacities. Any director or directors who may be absent when such excess is created or contracted, or who may have dissented from the act whereby the same was created or contracted, may respectively exonerate themselves from being so liable, by entering his protest to the same on the book of the minutes of the proceedings of the said corporation.
Refusal to redeem evidence of debt.
Sec. 25. If, at any time, the corporation hereby created, shall neglect or refuse, for ten days after demand, at the banking house, during the regular hours of business, to redeem, in specie, any evidence of debt issued by the said corporation, the said corporation shall discontinue and close all its operations of business, except the securing and collecting of debts due or to become due to the said corporation, and the charter hereby granted shall be forfeited.9
Payment demanded and refused.
Sec. 26. The said corporation shall be liable to pay to the holders of every evidence of debt made by it—the payment of which shall have been demanded and refused damages for the non-payment thereof in lieu of interest at and after the rate of ten per centum per annum, from the time of such refusal until the payment of such evidence of debt and the damages thereon.
Sec. 27. The stock of the said corporation shall be assignable and transferable according to such rules as shall be adopted, in that behalf, by the by-laws and ordinances thereof.
When the am’t[amount] of stock reserved to the State shall be subscribed.
Sec. 28. Whenever the one hundred thousand dollars reserved in this charter to be subscribed for by the State of Illinois, shall have been, by virtue of law, subscribed for, and the amount thereof paid in by the said State, the Governor shall nominate, and, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, appoint two directors on the part of the State, to represent her in the said corporation, whose rights, powers and duties, shall be, in all respects, the same as those of the directors chosen by the stockholders.
Directors shall make dividends of profits.
Sec. 29. It shall be the duty of the directors of the said corporation, to make dividends half-yearly, or otherwise,
<Page 8>of so much of the surplus profits arising from the business of the said corporation, as they, or a majority of them, shall deem advisable.
Expenses incurred by commissioners, how paid.
Sec. 30. The expenses incurred by Commissioners in executing any duties required by this act, shall be paid out of the moneys received by them, from the subscribers, out of the capital stock.
Sec. 31. The Legislature of this State shall never pass any law retarding, obstructing, staying, protracting, or in any wise suspending the collection of any debt or debts due the said Bank.
To be deemed a public act.
Sec. 32. This act shall be taken and received by all Courts, and by all Judges, Magistrates, and other public officers, as a public act, and shall be construed liberally for all beneficial purposes therein intended; and all printed copies of the same which shall be printed by or under the authority of the General Assembly, shall be admitted as good evidence thereof without any other proof whatever.
Conveyances to be signed by the president.
Sec. 33. All conveyances of real estate shall be made and signed by the President of this corporation, and shall have affixed to said conveyance the seal thereof.10
Shall not issue bills of less than five dollars.
Sec. 34. It shall not be lawful for this corporation, under penalty of the forfeiture of its charter, to issue any bank bills of a less denomination than five dollars; and the power is hereby reserved to the Legislature, fifteen years after the passage of this act should it be considered advisable, to further restrict the corporation from issuing any bank bills of a less denomination than ten dollars.11
Stock to be deemed personal property.
Sec. 35. The stock in said Bank shall be considered as personal property, and may be sold on execution, and transferred on the books of the Bank by the officer selling the same, but in all cases be subject to a lien in favor of the Bank, for all debts bona fide due, or then owing and to become due the same from the owner.12
Tax or bonus.
Sec. 36. The said Bank shall pay into the State Treasury annually, on the first day of January, one half per cent. on the amount of capital stock actually paid in by individuals, in lieu of all taxes and impositions whatsoever: Provided, That if said Bank shall abuse any of its corporate powers, by interfering in any of the elections of this State, other than that of its own officers, the said Bank and its Branches shall forfeit its charter, and cease to exist.13
Approved, Feb. 12, 1835.
1On December 6, 1834, the Senate appointed a select committee to inquire into the expediency of creating a state bank. The committee introduced two bills in response, with Conrad Will of the minority introducing SB 58 on January 15, 1835. On January 27, the Senate referred the bill to a select committee, which reported back the bill with an amendment on January 28. The Senate amended the select committee’s report by adding Sections 33 and 34, as well as a proviso to Section 23. The Senate then passed the bill as amended by a vote of 13 yeas to 11 nays. On February 9, the House of Representatives voted against a motion to table the bill by a vote of 21 yeas to 32 nays, with Abraham Lincoln voting nay. The House then amended Sections 1, 9, 10, and 14, and added Sections 35 and 36. The House voted against a motion to add a proviso to Section 8 by a vote of 23 yeas to 29 nays, with Lincoln voting nay. The House also voted against a motion to amend Section 8 by striking out Springfield by a vote of 16 yeas to 37 nays, with Lincoln again voting nay. The House amended the bill further by striking out language in Section 23, by a vote of 33 yeas to 19 nays, with Lincoln voting yea. The House then passed the bill as amended by a vote of 27 yeas to 26 nays, with Lincoln voting yea. On February 11, the Senate concurred in the House’s amendments. On February 12, the Council of Revision approved the bill and the act became law.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 421, 458, 499, 504-05, 508-12, 531, 538, 550, 560; Illinois Senate Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 64, 259, 335, 359-60, 473, 476, 486, 503, 509.
2On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by changing language in Section 1.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505, 508.
3This may refer to Edward M. Wilson of Vermilion County, Illinois.
4On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by adding the names Aquilla Wren, Ezra Baker, Jr., Edward M. Wilson, Edward L. Pierson, and Robert R. Green.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 509.
5On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by adding the following language to Section 9.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505, 508.
6On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by adding the proviso to Section 10.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505-06, 508.
7On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by striking out Section 14 and inserting new language.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505-06, 508.
8The Senate amended the bill by adding the proviso to Section 23 on January 28, 1835. On February 9, the House amended Section 23 by striking out language regarding loans of under four months’ duration.
Illinois Senate Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 359-60; Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 511.
9In 1836 the General Assembly extended to sixty days the time allowed for the Bank to redeem its notes in specie. However, the Panic of 1837 and Illinois’ failed system of internal improvements caused the Bank to suspend specie payments, which forfeited its charter. In 1840, the legislature reinstated the charter of the State Bank of Illinois.
10The Senate amended the bill by adding this section on January 28, 1835.
Illinois Senate Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 359.
11The Senate amended the bill by adding this section on January 28, 1835.
Illinois Senate Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 359.
12On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by adding Section 35.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505, 508.
13On February 9, 1835, the House amended the bill by adding Section 36 and then adding the proviso to it.
Illinois House Journal. 1835. 9th G. A., 1st sess., 505, 508, 510-11.
Printed Document, 8 page(s), Laws of the State of Illinois, Passed by the Ninth General Assembly, at their First Session (Vandalia, IL: J. Y. Sawyer, 1835), 7-14, GA Session: 9-1