Minutes of the Executive Council, February 28, 1862

Series: (Series 82, 1862)

Page 1 of 2

Civil War

Minutes of the Executive Council, February 28, 1862



Executive Department
Tallahassee February 298th 1862

This day 12 o clock pm. Messers Papy, Wiggins and Smith Simpkins, Esquires, presented themselves to His Excellency the Governor as the Executive Council appointed by the late Convention.

Governor Milton, in reply said to the gentlemen, that in his opinion the late “Convention” had no right as a political body claiming to represent the people to have assembled, and no right after the Constitution had been adopted and promulgated and the Officers of the State Civil and Military had been sworn to support it, to amend it.

The Constitution could only be amended in the manner therein provided, and the power to legislate belonged exclusively to the General Assembly of the State agreeably to their Constitution. The Convention had no right to legislate, that there was (no) intelligent member of the Convention who was not previously informed (previously) to their assembling of his opinions upon the subject as made known to the Genl Assembly, that he had frankly avowed these opinions to the first Committee which had visited the Executive Department, in presence of Col. A. A. Fisher and Dr. E. Barnard who were then present, and are now present, that he as Governor, however did not arrogate to himself to decide upon the powers of the Constitution.

The question of its powers was one for the Judicial Department of the Government, that the exigencies of the times demanded harmony, and that he would cheerfully cooperate with them so far as he could do so consistently with the Constitution and Laws of the State, which as Governor he had sworn to preserve, protect, and defend, and that he entertained the hope that they would


council together and act harmoniously and accomplish some benefit for the States without infringing the obligations imposed by the Constitution, while at the same time he did not admit any power claimed by them derived from the Convention, therefore having made known frankly the opinions which he entertained, and agreeably to which he should act, if agreeable to them, he would endeavor to act in harmony with them, and was ready to afford them every facility to render their efforts useful to the State.

To avoid the Expences, Gentlemen of your continuous attention to the duties with which you conceive yourselves to be invested, I will add, that whenever as Governor of the State, I consider your attendance necessary at the Capitol, I will (advise) you of the time and occasion.
The Council was then called to Order and adjourned to meet at “7 o clock” tonight.

Attest E. Barnard
Private Secretary to His Excellency

Friday 28th. Febry. Messers. Papy, Wiggins and Simpkins met His Excellency at the hour appointed, and after discussing the state of affairs adjourned at “half past 9 o clock” to meet to meet in the morning at 9 o clock.

Attest E. Barnard
Private Secretary to His Excellency