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In force, Feb.[February] 28, 1839.
AN ACT to incorporate Agricultural Societies.
Powers of co. comm’rs.
Organization of societies.
Sec.[Section] 1. Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois, represented in the General Assembly, That the county commissioners’ court in each and every county in this State may, at their June term, (should they think the same advisable,) in the year eighteen hundred and thirty-nine, and at the March term of their court in each year thereafter, until an agricultural society shall be formed within their county, cause notice to be given, in such manner as may be best calculated to give publicity throughout the county, that there will be held, at the usual place of holding courts in said county, (on some day, to be named in said notice, which said court shall think most advisable,) a meeting of the citizens of said county for the purpose of organizing a county agricultural society; and when said meeting shall convene, it shall be the duty of some justice of the peace, or some other person appointed by the court for that purpose, to have a vote taken of said meeting, to determine whether they will form an agricultural society or not; and if twenty or more citizens so convened shall decide in favor of forming such a society, the meeting may immediately appoint a chairman and secretary, and proceed to the election of officers and the organization of a county agricultural society.
Sec. 2. The officers of such society shall be a president, secretary, treasurer, and seven directors; and such subordinate officers as the president and directors shall from time to time appoint for the purpose of determining between competitors for prizes, and awarding the same.

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Treasurer to give bond;
to be recorded.
Sec. 3. The treasurer shall give bond, in such sum and with such security as the president and directors shall approve, conditioned for the payment of all moneys entrusted to him to such person or persons as may be by law entitled to the same, and for the faithful discharge of his duties as treasurer; which bond shall be recorded in the recorder’s office of the county, and filed in the office of clerk of the county commissioners’ court.
Annual meetings.
Sec. 4. At the first meeting of the society, and at each annual meeting thereafter, the society shall determine, by vote, what shall be the amount to be paid by each member for the ensuing year.
Election of officers.
Name & style.
Sec. 5. So soon as a certificate, signed by the chairman and secretary, that a meeting and election of a president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, and seven directors, have been had in conformity with the provisions of this act, is recorded in the recorder’s office of the county, they and their successors shall be, in law and in fact, a body corporate and politic, by the name and style of “The Agricultural Society of county,” and by such corporate name and style to sue and be sued, implead and be impleaded, answer and be answered unto, in all manner of suits, actions, pleas, causes, matters, and demands of whatsoever kind and nature they may be, in as full and effectual a manner as any person or persons, bodies corporate or politic, may or can do.
Vacancies, how filled.
Notice of elections.
Sec. 6. Said president and directors shall have power to make and alter by-laws, a majority of whom shall form a quorum to do business; to determine on what articles, animals, mode of husbandry, or other improvements of any kind connected with agriculture, domestic manufactures, or mechanism, they will confer prizes, and the amount thereof; to fix the day and place of exhibition; to fill vacancies in their own body, or in any office pertaining to the society, which may happen between annual elections; to provide for the admission of members; to direct the mode of holding future elections, of the time and place of holding said elections, of which at least ten days’ notice shall be given by the secretary of said society, either by publication in some public newspaper printed in the county, or by putting up written notices in five of the most public places in said county: Provided, No by-law of said society shall be in violation of the constitution of the United States, nor of the constitution of this State.
Sec. 7. Said president and directors may have a common seal, with which all their official acts shall be sealed, and they may alter and revoke said seal at pleasure, and institute another instead thereof.
Sec. 8. Such corporation may receive donations, or make purchase of land or other property, for the use of said society: Provided, That no such corporation shall hold any
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greater quantity of real estate than one hundred and sixty acres of land at any one time.
President to have casting vote.
Sec. 9. The president, or, in his absence, the vice president, shall preside at the meetings of the directors, and have a casting vote on all questions; and, in case of the absence of both these officers, the directors may choose a president pro tem. from their own body.
Duty of officers.
Sec. 10. It shall be the duty of all the officers of any society organized under this act, before entering upon their duties, to take an oath, before some officer authorized by the laws of the State to administer the same, for the faithful discharge of the duties of their several stations.
Sec. 11. No money shall be appropriated by said corporation to any other purpose but for the promotion of agriculture, domestic manufactures, or mechanism, and the necessary contingent expenses of said society.
Sec. 12. Nothing in this act shall be so construed as to prevent any member of any agricultural society, to be formed in conformity to the provisions of this act, from withdrawing therefrom on his giving notice thereof to the treasurer, and paying up all dues. This act to take effect and be in force from and after its passage.
Approved, February 28, 1839.
1On February 1, 1839, Harvey T. Pace introduced HB 243 in the House of Representatives. On February 13, the House passed the bill. On February 26, the Senate passed the bill. On February 28, the Council of Revision approved the bill and the act became law.
Journal of the House of Representatives of the Eleventh General Assembly of the State of Illinois, at their First Session, Begun and Held in the Town of Vandalia, December 3, 1838 (Vandalia, IL: William Walters, 1838), 320, 325, 355, 374, 392, 529, 549, 566; Journal of the Senate of the Eleventh General Assembly of the State of Illinois, at their First Session, Begun and Held in the Town of Vandalia, December 3, 1838 (Vandalia, IL: William Walters, 1838), 331, 424, 425, 447-48.

Printed Document, 3 page(s), Incorporation Laws of the State of Illinois, Passed by the Eleventh General Assembly (Vandalia, IL: William Walters, 1839), 126-28, GA Session: 11-1,