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The Stamp Act of 1765

XXV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That every officer of each court, and every justice of the peace or other person within the said colonies and plantations, who shall issue any writ or process upon which a duty is by this act payable, shall, at the issuing thereof, set down upon such writ or process the day and year of his issuing the same, which shall be entered upon a remembrance, or in a book to be kept for that purpose, setting forth the abstract of such writ or process; upon pain to forfeit the sum of ten pounds for every such offence.

XXVI. And, for the better collecting and securing the duties hereby charged on pamphlets containing more than one sheet of paper as aforesaid, be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That from and after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, one printed copy of every pamphlet which shall be printed or published within any of the said colonies or plantations, shall within the space of fourteen days after the printing thereof, be brought to the chief distributor in the colony or plantation where such pamphlet shall be printed, and the title thereof, with the number of the sheets contained therein, and the duty hereby charged thereon, shall be registered or entered in a book to be there kept for that purpose; which duty shall be thereupon paid to the proper officer or officers appointed to receive the same, or his or their deputy or clerk, who shall thereupon forthwith give a receipt for the same on such printed copy, to denote the payment of the duty hereby charged on such pamphlet; and if any such pamphlet shall be printed copy, to denote the payment of the duty thereon shall not be duly paid, and the title and number of sheets shall not be registered, and a receipt for such duty given on one copy, where required so to be, within the time herein before for that purpose limited; that then the author, printer, and publisher, and all other persons concerned in or about the printing or publishing of such pamphlet, shall, for every such offence, forfeit the sum of ten pounds, and shall lose all property therein, and in every other copy thereof, so as any person may freely print and publish the same, paying the duty payable in respect thereof by virtue of this act, without being liable to any action, prosecution, or penalty for so doing.

XXVII. And it is hereby further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That no person whatsoever shall sell or expose to sale any such pamphlet, or any new paper, without the true respective name or names, and place or places of abode, of some known person or persons by or for whom the same was really and truly printed or published, shall be written or printed thereon; upon pain that every person offending therein shall, for every such offence, forfeit the sum of twenty pounds.

XXVIII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That no officer appointed for distributing stamped vellum, parchment, or paper, in the said colonies or plantations, shall sell or deliver any stamped paper for printing any pamphlet, or any public news, intelligence, or occurrences, to be contained in one sheet, or any lesser piece of paper, unless such person shall give security to the said officer, for the payment of the duties for the advertisements which shall be printed therein or thereupon.

XXIX. And whereas it may be uncertain how many printed copies of the said printed news papers or pamphlets, to be contained in one sheet or in a lesser piece of paper, may be sold; and to the intent the duties hereby granted thereupon any not be lessened by printing a less number than may be sold, out of a fear of a loss thereby in printing more such copies than will be sold; it is hereby provided, and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That the proper officer or officers appointed for managing the said stamp duties, shall and may cancel, or cause to be cancelled, all the stamps upon the copies of any impression of any new paper or pamphlet contained in one sheet, or any lesser piece of paper, which shall really and truly remain unfold, and of which no profit or advantage has been made; and upon oath, or if by a quaker, upon solemn affirmation, made before a justice of the peace, or other proper magistrate, that all such copies, containing the stamps so tendered to cancelled, are really and truly remaining unfold, and that none of the said copies have been fraudulently returned or rebought, or any profit or advantage made thereof; which oath or affirmation such magistrate is hereby authorized or administer, and to examine upon oath or affirmation into all circumstances relating to the selling or disposing of such printed copies, shall and map deliver, or cause to be delivered, the like number of other sheets, half sheets, or less pieces of paper, properly stamped with the same respective stamps, upon payment made for such paper, but no duty shall be taken for the stamps thereon; any thing herein contained to the contrary notwithstanding; and the said commissioners for managing the stamp duties for the time being are hereby empowered, from time to time, to make such rules and orders for regulating the methods, and limiting the times, for such cancelling and allowance as aforesaid, with respect to such news papers and pamphlets, as they shall, upon experience and consideration of the several circumstances, find necessary or convenient, for the effectual securing the duties thereon, and doing justice to the persons concerned in the printing and publishing thereof.

XXX. Provided always, and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any officer or officers employed by the said commissioners for managing the stamp duties, shall and may deliver to any person, by or for whom any almanac or almanacs shall have been printed, paper marked or stamped according to the true intent and meaning hereof, for the printing such almanac or almanacs, upon his or her giving sufficient security to pay the amount of the duty hereby charged thereon, within the space of three months after such delivery; and that the said officer or officers, upon bringing to him or them any number of the copies of such almanacs, within the space of three months from the said delivery and request to him or them in that behalf made, shall cancel all the stamps upon such copies, and abate to every such person so much of the money due upon such security as such cancelled stamps shall amount to.

XXXI. Provided always, That where any almanac shall contain more than one sheet of paper, it shall be sufficient to stamp only one of the sheets or pieces of paper upon which such almanac shall be printed, and to pay the duty accordingly.

XXXII. And it is hereby further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That from and after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, in case any person or persons, within any of the said colonies or plantations, shall sell, hawk, carry about, utter, or expose to sale, any almanac, or calendar, or any news paper, or any book, pamphlet, or paper, deemed or construed to be, or serving the purpose of, an almanac or news paper, within the intention and meaning of this act, not being stamped or marked as by this act is directed; every such person, shall for every such offence, forfeit the sum of forty shillings.

XXXIII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That from and after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, the full sum or sums of money, or other valuable consideration received, or in any wise directly or indirectly given, paid, agreed, or contracted, for, with, or in relation to any clerk or apprentice, within any of the said colonies or plantations, shall be truly inserted, or written in words at length, in some indenture or other writing which shall contain the covenants, articles, contracts, or agreements, relating to the service of such clerk or apprentice; and shall bear date upon the day of the signing, sealing, or other execution of the same, upon pain that every master or mistress to or with whom, or to whose use, any sum of money, or other valuable consideration whatsoever, shall be given, paid, secured, or contracted, for or in respect of any such clerk or apprentice, which shall not be truly and fully so inserted and specified in some such indenture, or other writing, shall, for every such offence, forfeit double the sum, or double the amount of any other valuable consideration so given, paid, agreed, secured, or contracted for; to be sued for and recovered at any time, during the term specified in the indenture or writing for the service of such clerk or apprentice, or within one year after the determination thereof; and that all such indentures, or other writings, shall be brought, within the space of three months, to the proper officer or officers, appointed by the said commissioners for collecting the said duties within the respective colony or plantation; and the duty hereby charged for the sums, or other valuable consideration inserted therein, shall be paid by the master or mistress of such clerk or apprentice to the said officer or officers, who shall give receipts for such duty on the back of such indentures or other writings; and in case the duty shall not be paid within the time before limited, such master or mistress shall forfeit double the amount of such duty.

XXXIV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That all indentures or writings within the said colonies and plantations, relating to the service of clerks or apprentices, wherein shall not be truly inserted or written the full sum or sums of money, or other valuable consideration, received, or in any wise directly or indirectly given, paid, agreed, secured, or contracted for, with, or in relation to any such clerk or apprentice, and a receipt given for the same by the officer or officers aforesaid, or whereupon the duties payable by this act shall not be duly paid or lawfully tendered, according to the tenor and true meaning of this act, within the time herein for that purpose limited, shall be void and not available in any court or place. or to any purpose whatsoever.

XXXV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any master or mistress of any clerk or apprentice shall neglect to pay the said duty, within the time herein before limited, and any such clerk or apprentice shall in that case pay, or cause to be paid, to the amount of double the said duty, either during the term of such clerkship or apprenticeship, or within one year after the determination thereof, such master or mistress not having then paid the said double duty although required by such clerk or apprentice so to do; then, and in such case, it shall and may be lawful to and for any such clerk or apprentice, within three months after such payment of the said double duty, to demand of such master or mistress, or his or her executors or administrators, such sum or sums of money, or valuable consideration, as was or were paid to such master or mistress, for or in respect of such clerkship or apprenticeship; and in case such sum or sums of money, or valuable consideration, shall not be paid within three months after such demand thereof made, it paid within three months after such demand thereof made, it shall and may be lawful to and for any such clerk or apprentice, or any other person or persons on his or her behalf, to sue for and recover the same, in such manner as any penalty hereby inflicted may be sued for and recovered; and such clerks or apprentices shall, immediately after payment of such double duty, be and are hereby discharged from their clerkships or apprenticeships, and from all actions, penalties, forfeitures, and damages, for not serving the time for which they were respectively bound, contracted for, or agreed to serve, and shall have such and the same benefit and advantage of the time they shall respectively bound, contracted for, or agreed to serve, and shall have such and the same benefit and advantage of the time they shall respectively have continued with and served such master or mistress, as they would have been entitled to in case such duty has been paid by such master or mistress, within the time herein before limited for that purpose.

XXXVI. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That all printed indentures, or contacts for binding clerks or apprentices, after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, with the said colonies and plantations, shall have the following notice or memorandum printed under the same, or added thereto, videlicet,

The indenture must bear date the day it is executed and the money or other thing, given or contracted for with the clerk or apprentice, must be inserted in words at length, and the duty paid, and a receipt given on the back of the indenture, by the distributor of stamps, or his substitute, within three months after the execution of such indenture, under the penalties inflicted by law.

And if any printer, stationer, or other person or persons, within any of the said colonies or plantations, or any other part of his Majesty’s dominions, shall fell, or cause to be sold, any such indenture or contract, without such notice or memorandum being printed under the same, or added thereto; then, and in every such case, such printer, stationer, or other person or persons, shall, for every such offence, forfeit the sum of ten pounds.

XXXVII. And, for the better securing the said duty on playing cards and dice; be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That from and after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, no playing cards or dice shall be sold, exposed to sale, or used in play, within the said colonies and plantations, unless the paper and thread inclosing, or which shall have inclosed, to same, shall be or shall have been respectively sealed and stamped, or marked, and unless one of the cards of each pack or parcel of cards, so sold, shall be also marked or stamped on the spotted or painted side thereof with such mark or marks as shall have been provided in pursuance of this act, upon pain that every person who shall sell, or expose to sale, any such cards or dice which shall not have been so respectively sealed, marked, or stamped, as hereby is respectively required, shall forfeit for every pack or parcel of cards, and every one of such dice so sold or exposed to sale, the sum of ten pounds.

XXXVIII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any person within the said colonies and plantations, or any other part of his Majesty’s dominions, shall sell or buy any cover or label which has before been made use of for denoting the said duty upon cards, in order to be made use of for the inclosing any pack or parcel of cards; every person so offending shall, for every such offence, forfeit twenty pounds.

XXXIX. Provided always, and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if either the buyer or seller of any such cover or label shall inform against the other party concerned in buying or selling such cover or label, the party so informing shall be admitted to give evidence against the party informed against, and shall be indemnified against the said penalties.

XL. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any person or persons shall fraudulently inclose any parcel or pack of playing cards in any outside paper so sealed and stamped as aforesaid, the same having been made use of for the purpose aforesaid; then, so often, and in every such case, every person so offending in any of the particulars before-mentioned shall, for every such offence, forfeit the sum of twenty pounds.

XLI. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That from and after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, every clerk, officer, and other person employed or concerned in granting, making out, or delivering licences for retailing spirituous liquors or wine within any of the said colonies or plantations, shall, and he is hereby required and directed, within two months after delivering any such licences, to transmit to the chief distributor of stamped vellum, parcmen, and paper, a true and exact list or account of the number of licences so delivered, in which shall be inserted. the names of the persons licensed, and the places where they respectively reside; and if any such clerk, officer, or other person shall refuse or neglect to transmit any such list or account to such distributor, or shall transmit a false or untrue one, then, and in every such case, such clerk, officer, or other person, shall, for every such offence, forfeit fifty pounds.

XLII. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That licences for selling or uttering by retail spirituous liquors or wine within the said colonies and plantations, shall be in force and serve for no longer than one year from the date of each licence respectively.

XLIII. Provided nevertheless, and be it enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any person licenced to sell spirituous liquors or wines, shall die or remove from the house or place wherein such spirituous liquors or wine shall, by virtue of such licence, be sold, it shall and may be lawful for the executors, administrators, of assigns of such person so dying or removing, who shall be possessed of such house or place, or for any occupier of such house or place, to sell spirituous liquors or wine therein during the residue of the term for which such licence shall have been granted, without any new licence to be had or obtained in that behalf; any thing to the contrary thereof in any wise notwithstanding.

XVIV. And it is hereby enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if any person or persons shall sell or utter by retail, that is to say, in any less quantity than one gallon at any one time, any kind of wine, or any liquor called or reputed wine, or any kind of spirituous liquors, in the said colonies or plantations, without taking out such licence yearly and every year, he, she, or they so offending shall, for every such offence, forfeit the sum of twenty pounds.

XLV. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That every person who shall retail spirituous liquors or wine in any prison or house of correction, or any workhouse appointed or to be appointed for the reception of poor persons within any of the said colonies or plantations, shall be deemed a retailer of spirituous liquors or wine within this act.

XLVI. Provided always, and be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That if at any time after the said first day of November, one thousand seven hundred and sixty five, there shall not be any provision made for licensing the retailers of wine or spirituous liquors, within any of the said colonies or plantations; then, and in every such case, and during such time as no provision shall be made, such licences shall and may be granted for the space of one year, and renewed from time to time by the governor or commander in chief of every such respective colony or plantation.

XLVII. And it is hereby further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That every person who shall at any one time buy of any chief distributor within any of the said colonies or plantations, who shall from time to time have in their custody any public books, or other matters or things hereby charged with a stamp duty, shall, at any seasonable time or times, permit any officer or officers thereunto authorized by the said commissioners for managing the stamp duties, to inspect and view all such public books, matters, and things, and to take thereout such notes and memorandums as shall be necessary for the purpose of ascertaining or securing the said duties, without fee or pose or reward; upon pain that every such clerk or other officer who shall refuse or neglect so to do, upon reasonable request in that behalf made, shall, for every such refusal or neglect, forfeit the sum of twenty pounds.