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


Section 4. The General Assembly shall have power to authorize the several counties and incorporated towns in this state to impose taxes for county and corporation purposes, respectively, and all property shall be taxed upon the principles established in regard to State taxation.

Section 5. The General Assembly shall have power to authorize the levying of a capitation tax.


Census and Apportionment of Representation.

Section 1. The General Assembly shall, in the year one thousand eight hundred and sixty-seven, and in the year one thousand eight hundred and seventy-five, and every tenth year thereafter, cause an enumeration to be made of all the inhabitants of the State; and to the whole number of white inhabitants shall be added three-fifths of the number of colored people; and they shall then proceed to apportion the representation equally among the different counties, according to such enumeration, giving, however, one representative to every county, and increasing the number of representatives on a uniform ratio of population, according to the foregoing basis, and which ratio shall not be changed until a new census shall have been taken.

Section 2. The General Assembly shall also, after every such enumeration,