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


to judgment and execution in the name of the State.

Section 4. The Provisional Governor of this State is hereby requested to authorize the civil officers of this State who were discharging the duties of their offices prior to, or during the month of May, A. D. 1865, to resume the exercise of the functions of their respective offices, and to make such other appointments to office as may be necessary or proper to reorganize or re-establish the civil government of this State; and all actions at law, or suits in chancery, or any proceeding pending in any of the courts of this State, prior to, or during the said month of May, 1865, and either before or subsequent to the 10th day of January, A. D. 1861, shall continue in all respects valid, and may be prosecuted to judgment and decree: and all judgments and decrees rendered in civil causes in any of the courts in this State during the period of time last above specified, and not repugnant to the constitution of the United States, are hereby declared of full force, validity and effect.

Section 5. The Provisional Governor of the State is hereby requested and authorized, at as early a day as practicable, to issue writs of election to the proper officers in the different counties in this State, and make proclamation for an election for Governor, Lieutenant Governor, Secretary of State, Treasurer, Comptroller of Public Accounts, Attorney General, Circuit Judges, Judges of Probate, Sheriffs, Clerks of Circuit Courts, Solicitors, Representative in Congress, Senators and Representatives of the General Assembly, County Commissioners, Coroners, Justices of the Peace, County Surveyors, and all other officers provided for by this Constitution. The said election shall be held on the 29th day of November, A. D. 1865. The