ILLINOIS
LEGIS.
} H. R. { 12th ASSEM.
2d SESSION.
FEBRUARY 4th, 1841.
Read, laid on the table, and 150 copies ordered to be printed.
A BILL
For “An act in relation to the recording of deeds, and for other purposes.”
1
SEC.[Section] 1. Be it enacted by the People of the State of Illinois, represented in General Assembly,
2 That hereafter it shall be the duty of the Recorder of every county, to demand and receive, in
3 addition to the fees already allowed by law, before he shall file or record, any act, deed, or instru-
4 ment, the sum of fifty cents for each and every tract, parcel, or lot of land intended to be con-
5 veyed, mortgaged, or in any way affected, in or by any such act, deed or instrument; which said
6 sum of fifty cents shall be reserved by the Recorder for the use of the State, and shall be by him
7 paid over monthly, or oftener, if demanded, to the county collector, whose receipt for any sum
8 received shall be a sufficient discharge to such Recorder.
SEC 2. That it shall be the duty of every Recorder to make a report quarterly to the State
2 Treasurer, of the number of the tracts, parcels, or lots of land set forth as conveyed or mortgaged,
3 or to be affected in anywise, in or by the several acts, deeds, or instruments by him filed or
4 recorded; and if any Recorder shall fail to make the quarterly reports herein required, or shall
5 fail or refuse to pay over to the county collector any sum of money received under the provis-
6 ions of this act, he shall on conviction thereof be liable to be fined in the sum of five hundred
7 dollars; he shall be forthwith removed from office, and an election shall be ordered within
8 thirty days thereafter to fill the vacancy occasioned by such removal.
Sec. 3. That the following officers shall pay to the Secretary of State, for their respective
2 commissions, upon the receiving of the same, the sum of twenty dollars, viz: the Secretary of
3 State, the Auditor of Public Accounts, State Treasurer, Public Printer, Fund Commissioner,
4 Commissioner of the Illinois and Michigan Canal, Commissioners of Public Works, and all other
5 officers of this State now created or hereafter to be created, (except the Judges of the Supreme
6 and Circuit Courts,) whose salaries or aggregate of per diem allowance, shall amount to one thou-
7 sand dollars annually.
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Sec. 4. That every Attorney General, State’s Attorney, Judge of Probate, Sheriff and
2 Recorder, shall pay ten dollars each for their respective commissions, upon the receiving of the
3 same; that all other civil officers not named in this act, who shall be commissioned by the Gov-
4 ernor, shall each pay on the receiving of the commission, one dollar therefor.
Sec. 5. That from and after the passage of this act, it shall not be lawful for the Secretary
2 of State, or for the Clerk of the county commissioners’ court of any county, to deliver to any
3 person any commission, without first having received therefor the compensation fixed by this act.
Sec. 6. That it shall be the duty of the Secretary of State to furnish the State Treasurer
2 with a list of all commissions delivered to any officer of State, or officer of any county, and
3 also a list of all the commissions sent to the Clerk of any county commissioners court. It shall
4 moreover be the duty of the Secretary of State, to pay over to the State Treasurer monthly, and
5 oftener, if required, all monies which he may have received under the provisions of this act; and
6 upon failure thereof, it shall be the duty of the State Treasurer to give notice thereof to the
7 Governor, who shall thereupon dismiss the Secretary of State from office, and appoint another
8 in his stead.
Sec. 7. That all clerks of the County commissioners court, County surveyors, and Constables
2 shall upon the receiving of any certificate of election, pay into the county treasury, for the use
3 of the county, the sum of two dollars for every such certificate.
Sec. 8. That no person ^lawyer^ shall hereafter be permitted in any court of justice, or before any judge
2 of probate, or justice of the peace, to prosecute or defend any suit or matter in litigation, unless
3 he shall be a party to the suit, unless such person ^lawyer^ shall have paid into the county treasury of
4 the county in which he resides the sum of five dollars, for a license to practice as a lawyer or
5 attorney in said county: Provided, however, that no lawyer or attorney shall be required to pay
6 for more than one license in any one year, which license shall enable him to practice in any
7 county in the State. ^Provided &c^
Sec. 9. That no person who shall practice as a physician or surgeon, shall be entitled to demand
2 or receive, any compensation for any medical advice or assistance or for any medicine or drug
3 furnished, unless such person shall have first paid into the county treasury of the county in which
4 such person shall reside, the sum of five dollars for a license, which license shall continue and be
5 in force for one year and no longer. ^Proviso.^
Sec. 10. That a license or receipt from the County Treasurer of any county, shall be sufficient
2 evidence, on the part of any person presenting the same, that such person has complied with
3 the eighth and ninth sections of this act. The said sum of five dollars required to be paid by the
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4 eighth and ninth sections of this act, for a license as aforesaid, shall be paid to the county treas-
5 urer, on or before the first day of October in each year.
Sec. 11. That every County Commissioners’s Clerk shall pay over to the county collector,
2 when thereunto required, all monies which such clerk may have received under the provisions
3 of this act, for any commissions forwarded to him by the Secretary of State; and the county
4 collector shall pay over and account for the monies received by him to the State Treasurer, in
5 the same manner that such collector is required to pay over and account for any monies receiv-
6 ed by him under the revenue laws of this State.2
^Sec 12^

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[docketing]
A Bill for an act in relation to the recording of deeds and for other purposes
[docketing]
[02]/[19]/[1841]
refused Eng.[Engrossed]
[docketing]
[02]/[19]/[1841]
ord[ordered] 2
1On January 9, 1841, the House of Representatives adopted a resolution authorizing the Committee of Finance, of which Abraham Lincoln was a member, to investigate the constitutionality of increasing revenue through a tax on legal documents. In response to this resolution, Ebenezer Peck from the Committee on Finance introduced HB 192 in the House on February 4. The House tabled the bill and ordered 150 copies printed. On February 11, the House took up the bill, referring it to the Committee of the Whole and making it the special order of the day for February 15. On February 19, the House refused to table an amendment to the first and ninth sections by a vote of 37 yeas to 41 nays, with Lincoln voting yea, but then rejected the amendment. The House rejected an amendment to strike out the first and second sections by a vote of 32 yeas to 43 nays, with Lincoln voting nay. The House rejected an amendment to add an additional section by a vote of 33 yeas to 45 nays, with Lincoln voting nay. Representatives offered additional amendments, which the House refused to table by a vote of 23 yeas to 56 nays, with Lincoln not voting. The House then resolved itself into the Committee of the Whole to consider the bill. The Committee of the Whole reported back the bill with amendments. The House refused a division of the question on the committee’s report by a vote of 28 yeas to 41 nays, with Lincoln voting nay. The House adopted amendments to the committee report amending the eighth and ninth sections, but rejected the committee’s amendments to an unrecorded section by a vote of 40 yeas to 34 nays, with Lincoln voting nay. The House refused to engross the bill as amended by a vote of 30 yeas to 45 nays, with Lincoln voting yea.
Illinois House Journal. 1840. 12th G. A., 323, 373, 446-50.
2John F. Charles and other members of the House of Representatives viewed a tax on deeds as reminiscent of the stamp duties the British Parliament enacted in the years before the American Revolution. David M. Woodson countered that a tax on deeds was preferable to other taxes because it would not fall disproportionately on the poor, nor would it be as oppressive or burdensome as a more direct tax. Woodson cited Kentucky as a place where such taxes proved successful.
Illinois State Register (Springfield, IL), 5 March 1841, 1:6.

Printed Document, 4 page(s), Folder 135, HB 192, GA Session 12-2, Illinois State Archives (Springfield, IL),