Constitution of 1865

In October 1865, delegates convened to reestablish Florida as part of the United States by revoking the state’s Ordinance of Secession and passing a new state constitution. The state remained under martial law, however, and Congress refused to seat legislators from the former Confederate states until more stringent requirements were met. Florida ultimately scrapped the Constitution of 1865 in favor of a new version created in 1868.

Constitution of 1865


a Speaker and its other officers, and the Senate, its other officers, and in the absence of the Lieutenant Governor, a President pro tempore, and each House shall be judge of the qualifications, elections, and returns of its members; but a contested election shall be determined in such manner as shall be directed by law.

Section 7. A majority of each House shall constitute a quorum to do business, but a smaller number may adjourn from day to day, and may compel the attendance of absent members, in such manner and under such penalties as each House may prescribe.

Section 8. Each House may determine the rules of its own proceedings, punish its members for disorderly behavior, and with the consent of two-thirds, expel a member, but not a second time for the same cause.

Section 9. Each House, during the session, may punish, by imprisonment, any person not a member, for disrespectful or disorderly behavior in its presence, or for obstructing any of its proceedings, provided, such imprisonment shall not extend beyond the end of the session.

Section 10. Each House shall keep a Journal of its proceedings, and cause the same to be published immediately after its adjournment; and the yeas and nays of the members of each House shall be taken and entered upon the Journals upon the final passage of every bill, and may, by any two members, be required upon any other question; and any member of either House shall have liberty to dissent from, or protest against, any act or resolution which he may think injurious to the public, or an individual, and have the reasons of