In force, Feb. [February] 26, 1841.
An ACT to authorize the relocation of the county seat of Clay county.1
Commiss’rs[Commissioners] to relocate county seat
Sec.[Section] 1. Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois, represented in the General Assembly, That Ferris Foreman, of Fayette county, John Trapp, of Effingham county, and James Bowman of Jefferson county, be, and they are hereby appointed commissioners to relocate the county seat of Clay county.
Time and place of meeting
Location of county seat
Certificate of relocation
Sec. 2. Said commissioners, or a majority of them, shall meet in the town of Louisville, on the first Monday in May next, or within thirty days thereafter, and after being duly sworn to the faithful discharge of their duties, shall proceed
<Page 2>to examine such parts of said county as they may think proper to enable them to locate said county seat for the public good, the commissioners shall make said location as near the centre of said county, as an eligible site can be procured, taking into consideration the public interest; the commissioners shall make out and return to the clerk of the county commissioners’ court a certificate of the re-location of said county seat, which shall be recorded by the clerk.
Lots to be donated
Sec. 3. If the location of the county seat shall be made on private property, the owner shall be required to lay off a town containing at least twenty acres of ground, laying off a proper public square, which square shall be deeded to the county for public purposes; the owner of said land shall give to the county one third of the lots in said town, when so laid off, divided as follows, the owner of the land to take two lots together, and the county the next, and so on through the town; the third part of the town thus falling to the county shall be conveyed by a good deed to the county of Clay.
Lots shall be sold
Sec. 4. The county commissioners of Clay county as soon as the county seat is located under the provisions of this act, and the town laid off and conveyed to the county as provided for in the foregoing section, shall proceed to advertise and sell all or such parts of said lots as the county commissioners may think best for the interest of said county, the proceeds of the sale to be applied under the directions of the county commissioners to the erection of public buildings for saidcounty.
Officers to move to county seat
Sec. 5. After the county seat shall have been located, as provided for in this act, the county officers of Clay county, who are required by law to keep their offices at the county seat, as soon as they can procure suitable places for keeping their offices, shall move the same to the county seat so located.
Property in Maysville shall be sold, except jail
Sec. 6. On the removal of said county seat, the county commissioners of Clay county shall give public notice and proceed to sell to the best bidder, all the public property owned by the county in the town of Maysville, except the jail, which shall be reserved from sale, and used by the county as a jail until the county commissioners shall think it necessary to build a jail at the county seat when located, the proceeds of all such sales shall he applied to the erection of public buildings at the county seat, when located under the provisions of this act.
Buildings to be erected
Sec. 7. The county commissioners shall immediately on the location of the county seat, proceed to cause to be erected at the county seat, a suitable court house and other necessary buildings for public uses, which shall be prosecuted with all reasonable diligence.
County commiss’rs may borrow money
Sec. 8. The county commissioners of Clay county are hereby authorized to make a loan of money on behalf of the county, of any bank or person, not to exceed five thousand
<Page 3>dollars, and not for a longer term than ten years; which money, when so borrowed, shall be applied to the erection of public buildings, and for no other purposes whatever.
Courts where held.
Sec. 9. The spring terms of the county and circuit courts shall be held at the town of Maysville, and the fall terms at the county seat to be located under the provisions of this act.
Compensation of com’rs[commissioners]
Sec. 10. The commissioners appointed by this act to relocate the county seat of Clay county, shall be allowed a reasonable compensation for their services, to be paid out of the county treasury of Clay county.
If county seat is located on public lands,county com’rs to purchase
Sec. 11. If the county seat shall be located on public land, the commissioners shall inform the county commissioners thereof, who shall immediately procure the purchase of said land for the coun y, upon which they shall cause a town to be laid off and the lots sold, the proceeds of which shall be applied to public buildings.
Approved, February 26, 1841.2
1On January 14, 1841, Peter Green in the House of Representatives presented the petition of citizens of Clay County, which the House referred to a select committee. Green, as a member of the select committee, introduced HB 166 in the House on February 3. The House passed the bill on February 10. On February 19, the Senate referred the bill to the Committee on Counties. The Committee on Counties reported back the bill on February 20, recommending its passage. The Senate passed the bill without amendment. On February 26, the Council of Revision approved the bill, and the act became law.
Illinois House Journal. 1840. 12th G. A., 222, 317, 346, 358, 463, 517, 524, 531; Illinois Senate Journal. 1840. 12th G. A., 291, 357, 361.
2On May 5, 1841, Foreman, Trapp, and Bowman certified that they had fixed the location for the new county seat on forty acres in Louisville. In August 1841, the county commissioners’ court held its first session in Louisville.
History of Wayne and Clay Counties, Illinois (Chicago: Globe, 1884), 327.
Printed Document, 3 page(s), Laws of the State of Illinois, Passed by the Twelfth General Assembly (Springfield, IL: William Walters, 1841), 96-98, GA Session 12-2,