WHEREAS, under the Constitution of the State of South Carolina, Article VII, and an Act of the General Assembly carrying into effect the provisions of said Article of the Constitution, one-third of the qualified electors residing in a certain section of Barnwell County which it is proposed to cut off to form the new County of Bamberg did file their petition with the Governor, in compliance with the said Article of the Constitution and the Act of the General Assembly aforesaid; and whereas the Governor did order an election to be held in the said section of Barnwell County, which election was duly held on the 19th day of January, A. D. 1897, and more than two-thirds majority of the votes cast in said section having been in favor of cutting off the said section of Barnwell County to form the new County of Bamberg, and more than two-thirds majority of the votes cast at said election having been cast in favor of Bamberg as the name of the said new County, and more than two-thirds majority of the votes cast at said election having been in favor of locating the County Seat in the town of Bamberg; and whereas the said Article of the Constitution and the said Act of the General Assembly have been fully complied with in every respect. Now, therefore,
SECTION 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, That a new judicial and election district, to be known as Bamberg County, with the seat of justice located in the town of Bamberg, shall be, and the same is hereby, formed from a portion of the present County of Barnwell, with the metes and bounds hereinafter mentioned and described, that is to say: Beginning at a point in the middle of the stream of Salkehatchie River where George's Creek enters said river, and running due North up said stream by Rush's Mill to a gum tree one and one-fourth miles above Rush's Mill; thence due North to a point in the middle of the stream of South Edisto River; thence down the middle of the stream of said river to where it enters into the Edisto River; thence down the middle of this latter river to the point where the same is intersected by the line dividing the County of Barnwell from the County of Colleton; thence along said dividing line to where the same intersects with Salkehatchie River; thence up the middle of the stream of said Salkehatchie River to the point of be ginning, as shown by a map of said proposed County of Bamberg made by J. S. Mixson & Son, December 1st, 1896.
SECTION 2. That J. H. Brabham, Thomas Black, H. C. Folk, James B. Kearse and W. H. Carter be, and they are hereby, appointed Commissioners to provide suitable buildings for the several Courts and County offices, and to select and purchase and procure sites for the necessary public buildings, and to contract for and superintend the erection of the court house and jail thereon; and that said public buildings shall be built at the expense of the town of Bamberg at a cost for sites and buildings not to exceed the sum of 25,000 dollars, and to meet said demand a special tax on the assessed value of all real and personal property within the corporate limits of the said town of Bamberg is hereby authorized to be levied. At any time a majority of the free holders of the town of Bamberg, as shown by its tax books, petition for an election for that purpose, the Town Council of said town are hereby empowered and directed to order, after not less than ten days' notice, an election for the purpose of determining the question whether said town shall issue bonds for the purpose of erecting said public buildings. At such election all electors of said town who are duly qualified for voting under Sections 12 and 13, Article II, of the Constitution shall be allowed to vote, and the vote of a majority of those voting in said election shall be necessary to authorize the issue of said bonds. That said bonds shall run for forty years and shall bear interest at the rate of not exceeding seven per cent payable semi-annually. That for the purpose of meeting the said bonds as they respectively become due and payable, the Town Council of Bamberg be, and they are hereby, authorized and required to levy for each fiscal year preceding the maturity of any of said bonds, upon the taxable property of said town, a tax not to exceed in each year more than four mills, if so much be necessary, upon the value of said taxable property, the proceeds of which tax when collected by the Town Treasurer shall be kept apart by him and shall be applied by him exclusively for the payment of such of the said bonds and the interest thereon as shall fall due and become payable on the first day of March next after the levy of said tax. And in case of the neglect or failure of said Town Council or Treasurer to perform the said duties herein required to be performed by them, or either of them, the holder or holders of any of the said bonds may enforce the same by mandamus, either in the Circuit or Supreme Court of the State.
SECTION 3. That a majority of the Commissioners named in Section 2 of this Act shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business, and the exercise of any and all the powers and duties vested in the said Commissioners by this Act shall be valid to all intents and purposes if such exercise of power and duties be by a majority of said Commissioners present at a meeting, provided a quorum be present.
SECTION 4. That the Commissioners named in Section 2 are hereby authorized to secure any building or buildings at any convenient place in the town of Bamberg they may select for the meetings and for the other needs and uses for the County herein established until the permanent buildings are erected as herein provided.
SECTION 5. That until the next apportionment the County of Bamberg shall be entitled to two Representatives and the County of Barnwell three Representatives.
SECTION 6. That within thirty days after the approval of this Act the Governor shall appoint the County Auditor and three Supervisors of Registration, a County Treasurer, for Bamberg County, who shall enter upon the duties of their offices immediately; and he shall also appoint Commissioners of Election for said County for State and County officers; and the Supervisors of Registration of Barnwell County shall on demand deliver to the Supervisors of Registration of Bamberg County the registration books for the territory embraced in the County of Bamberg and for the use in the special election ordered in this Act. Said Supervisors shall also turn over to the Supervisors of Bamberg County the registration books for all places for which any voters are registered who reside in the bounds of Bamberg County. That the Clerk of the Court, Judge of Probate, Sheriff, County Supervisors, County Board of Commissioners, School Commissioners, the Court of Common Pleas, and the Court of General Sessions and all other County officers of the County of Barnwell, as they stood and were organized prior to the formation of the County of Bamberg, shall have full jurisdiction and power in and over the people and the territory embraced within the limits of Bamberg County until December 31st, 1897. That the Commissioners of Election to be appointed by the Governor as aforesaid shall issue notice by publication once a week for three weeks in some newspaper published at Bamberg, calling for a special election to be held in the County of Bamberg for all elective officers for said County to be held on the fourth day of May, 1897; that the County officers elected at said special election shall hold their terms of office for the unexpired period to which they would have been entitled under the Constitution and laws of this State had they been elected at the last general election; that said officers so elected shall qualify on or before 31st December, 1897, and enter upon the duties of their office; and said County of Bamberg shall be fully created and established on the 31st day of December, 1897.
SECTION 7. That John F. Folk, Jacob Fogle and Holland Kennedy be, and are hereby, appointed Commissioners and authorized and required to mark off, survey and set up corners on the boundary line of the said County of Bamberg, and the Commissioners in this Section appointed shall receive as compensation for their services each the sum of two dollars per day for not exceeding ten days: Provided, That the portion cut from Blackville township shall be attached to and form part of Bamberg Township; and that portion cut from George's Creek Township shall attach to and be a part of Buford's Bridge Township.
SECTION 8. That the bonds of the County officers of the County of Bamberg shall be in the penal sums following, that is to say: The Sheriff in the sum of $10,000; Judge of Probate, $5,000; Clerk of the Court of Common Pleas, $10,000; Treasurer, $15,000; Supervisor, $5,000; Auditor, $2,000; and the County Superintendent of Education, $1,000.
SECTION 9. That the Auditor of the County of Bamberg shall
receive from the Treasurer of the state an annual salary of six
hundred dollars, and from the funds of said County of Bamberg
he shall receive an annual salary of one hundred dollars. The
Treasurer of the County of Bamberg shall receive from the State
Treasurer the same commissions allowed to other County Treasurers,
and from the treasury of the County of Bamberg the same commissions
as are now provided by law for the County of Barnwell. Said Treasurer
shall deposit all funds belonging to the County in the Bank of
Bamberg to the account of the special fund to which the various
sums are appropriated, and shall draw his checks upon the specific
fund from which payment is to be made: Provided, That neither
the County Auditor or Treasurer shall receive or be entitled
to any compensation from the County of Bamberg until after the
year 1898. The Clerk of the Court shall receive in lieu of all
costs and fees in criminal cases the sum of one hundred and fifty
dollars and such costs as are now provided by law for all civil
business. The Sheriff of Bamberg County shall receive in lieu
of all costs and fees in criminal cases and for all work within
the County the sum of five hundred dollars. The office of County
Superintendent of Education is hereby abolished in the County
of Bamberg, and the duties of his office shall be devolved upon
the County Anditor without extra compensation therefor. The Coroner
shall annually receive the sum of one hundred dollars in lieu
of all costs, fines, fees, &c. The Supervisor of the County
of Bamberg shall receive an annual salary of six hundred dollars.
(a.) Said Supervisor hereby is required to provide all food and
other articles necessary for the dieting, clothing and maintenance
of all inmates of the County Poor House, and for the dieting
and maintenance of prisoners confined
SECTION 10. That the territory embraced in Bamberg County shall belong to the Second Congressional District and to the Second Judicial Circuit, and the regular terms of the Court of General Sessions shall be held in the town of Bamberg for the County of Bamberg on the second Monday of April and the fourth Monday of July and the first Monday of December in each year; and the Court of Common Pleas at the same place on Wednesdays following the Mondays on which the Court of General Sessions opens for the said County of Bamberg, the first term of the said Court of General Sessions to be held on the second Monday of April, 1898. That the Magistrates now in office shall bind over to the Court of General Sessions of Bamberg County such parties as are required by law to be bound over when the offense is committed in Bamberg County as formed by this Act. Said Magistrates whose offices are in Bamberg County shall in like manner be restricted in their official functions, powers and duties to the said County of Bamberg, and until otherwise provided by law they shall each receive the same compensation as now is provided by law for each, respectively, and they shall have such powers, duties and jurisdiction in Bamberg County as is now provided for Magistrates.
SECTION 11. That from and after the first day of January, A. D. 1898, all suits pending in the Courts of Barnwell County of which the defendants reside in that portion of the said County now established as the County of Bamberg, and all indictments then pending in the Courts of said County where the offense was committed in that part of said County now established as the County of Bamberg, shall be transferred to the dockets of the Courts of the said County of Bamberg, and all records, commissions and other papers belonging to any of the said suits or indictments, together with all the legal incidents thereunto appertaining, shall be transferred to the Clerk of the Court of said County of Bamberg, and all writs and other processes already issued and made returnable to the terms of the Courts of Barnwell County where the defendants in the said cases reside in the parts of the said County now established as the County of Bamberg shall be as valid and effectual as though they had been issued to the _____ term of the Court of the said County of Bamberg; and the service of such processes by the Sheriff of said County shall be as good and effectual as a service to the _____ term of the Court of the said County of Bamberg, and all such writs and processes shall be transferred by the Clerk of the Court of the said County to the Clerk of the Court of the County of Bamberg: Provided, All suits in equity in which issues shall be joined by the first day of January, 1898, and in which orders of reference have been granted shall remain within the jurisdiction of the Courts of Barnwell County until the final decree is made and suit terminated.
SECTION 12. That the Sheriff of Barnwell County upon application of the plaintiff or his attorney, in any judgment of record in the said County, shall deliver to the Sheriff of Bamberg County any and all executions in his office in which the said plaintiff is interested, for which the Sheriff of Bamberg County shall receipt to the Sheriff of the County of Barnwell, and said executions when entered upon the Sheriff's books in Bamberg County shall have thereafter the same force and effect as previously in the County from which they were transferred.
SECTION 13. That the County Supervisor of Bamberg County, in anticipation of the collection of the general County tax be, and is hereby, empowered to contract debts and incur liabilities to the extent of two thousand dollars for the purpose of supplying the furniture and books required by law for the several County offices and for defraying the Court expenses, which sum shall be repaid out of the general County tax.
SECTION 14. That the Board of Jury Commissioners of Barnwell County be, and they are hereby, required to prepare and furnish to the Board of Jury Commissioners of Bamberg County, within ten days after demand by the said Jury Commissioners of Bamberg County, separate lists of persons liable to serve as jurors and residing in the limits of the said County as altered by this Act. From the lists so furnished to the Board of Jury Commissioners of Bamberg County shall be drawn, in accordance with law, the petit and grand jurors and the talesmen of the Courts to be holden in Bamberg County, in conformity with the provisions of this Act, and the jurors so drawn are hereby declared lawful jurors to all intents and purposes.
SECTION 15. That the Governor is authorized and empowered to appoint a Commission of two persons, one of whom shall be a resident of Barnwell County and one a resident of the County of Bamberg, which said Commission shall select a third member, and the said Commission of three shall divide and apportion between the Counties of Barnwell and Bamberg the lawful and bona fide indebtedness of the old County of Barnwell, having due regard to the amount of unpaid taxes due in said County, and that said County of Bamberg shall receive credit for its proportionate share of any money on hand in said County not expended as provided by law prior to December 31st, 1897. All expenses incurred by the Commission provided for in this Section shall be paid by the County of Bamberg.
SECTION 16. That all salaries shall be paid to the various officials of the County of Bamberg in cash monthly.
SECTION 17. That any officer who shall make or contract any debt or debts in excess of the appropriation for that specific purpose, or when there is not funds in the County treasury specifically appropriated for that purpose sufficient to pay such contract, debt or debts, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and shall be subject to indictment, and upon conviction shall be removed from office and liable upon his official bond for double the sum or sums so contracted.
SECTION 18. That this Act shall be a public Act, and shall take effect on December 31st, 1897, and all Acts and parts of Acts inconsistent therewith be, and the same are hereby, repealed.
Approved the 25th day of February, A. D. 1897.