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justice of such laws and did not enforce them. For instance, in one case a man was accused of stealing a sheep. The judge threw the case out of court because it was a ewe that he had stolen, so that he might not have to pronounce a death sentence. Have any of these technicalities of the law come down to us to-day when we do not need them? Why do we not need them to-day?

3. Are crimes prevented more by the severity of punishment or by the certainty of punishment? Would you consider it extravagant for the government to spend $100,000 in order to detect and bring a murderer to justice?

4. In Porto Rico an accused person may choose whether he will be tried by a jury or by a judge. It is said that if he is innocent he always chooses the judge. Explain why.

5. You cannot compel a person accused of a crime to testify against himself according to law. You cannot so much as ask him where he was when the crime was committed. What do you think of this old legal rule? Would you favor compelling the accused to make a statement as to his whereabouts to the justice of the peace before whom he is brought - else assume that he is guilty?

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CHAPTER XXIII

COUNTY AND TOWNSHIP GOVERNMENT

I. COUNTY SYSTEM 185. Origin of County Government. — The Southern colonists were agriculturalists living far apart on plantations. A small class of aristocrats owned most of the property and were well educated, but illiterate slaves formed the masses. Under these conditions the people did not develop local self-government as they did in New England, where there was a substantial middle class of towns-people.

Therefore it was necessary to divide the colonies into counties so that the laws might be properly enforced. Thus the county became the most important governmental division of the colony. After the colonies became States the importance of county government continued, and the new States in the Southwest and extreme West copied the Southern county system 2

186. Functions of Counties. — A county is a governmental division of a State which administers State laws and such county laws as the State permits the county to enact. These county functions are determined by the State legislature except in regard to those matters for which provision is made by the State constitution. The county is always subject to the will of the State.

In most States it is the duty of the county to preserve

1 The divisions were called counties because the divisions of England were so called. 2 In Louisiana the divisions corresponding to counties are named parishes.

peace; administer justice; distribute the property of a deceased person; register titles to land; maintain schools; build and repair roads and bridges; care for the poor; protect the health of the community; collect local, county, and State taxes, and expend the county portion of these taxes in the performance of the county functions just enumerated.

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ROAD BUILDING MACHINE ON THE PACIFIC HIGHWAY, OREGON.

187. How County Functions are Performed.

Most county officers are chosen by an election conducted at various voting places throughout the county for short terms — commonly two or four years but in some States a few officers are chosen by the county board, the State legislature, the governor, the judge, or otherwise appointed. The officers are not exactly the same in all States, but every county except those in Rhode Island and Georgia has a board which in most States is called the board of commissioners."

1 In addition to the usual functions that county governments administer for State governments there are a number of local option State laws which may be accepted for a county by its board of commissioners or board of supervisors.

188. The County Board. — In England the counties were administered by the Quarter Sessions Court of the justices of

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the peace of the county. Naturally this system was copied in America. In Kentucky, Tennessee, and Arkansas the justices of the peace continue to administer the counties, but since they are elected for definite terms the system is not materially unlike the more recent systems to be described in the next paragraph.

Board of Supervisors. — New York early departed from the system described in the last paragraph by establishing a county

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Maine.
Commissioners
Elected at large

6
New Hampshire

3 Commissioners Elected at large

2 Vermont. 2 Assistant Judges

Elected at large

2
Massachusetts
Commissioners
Elected at large

4
Rhode Island
Connecticut.
3 Commissioners

By State Legislature

4
New York

T'ship
Supervisors
Elected by townships

2
New Jersey T'ship; 3 to 9 Chosen Freeholders

Elected by townships; elected at large 1, 2, 3 Pennsylvania 3 Commissioners

Elected at large

4 Delaware

3, 7, 10 Commissioners Elected by districts

4 Ohio 3 Commissioners

Elected at large

4 Indiana 3 and 7 Commissioners and Co. Council Elected by districts

3 and 4 Michigan T'ship Supervisors

Elected by townships

1
Illinois

T'ship ; 3 Sup. (in 85 Cos.); Com. (in 17 Cos.) Elected by townships; elected at large
Wisconsin

T’ship
Supervisors
Elected by townships

1 and 4
Minnesota
5 to 7 Commissioners

Elected by districts

4
Iowa
3 to 7 Supervisors

Elected by districts or at large

3
North Dakota 3 or 5 Commissioners

Elected by districts

4 South Dakota 3 to 5 Commissioners

Elected by districts

4 Nebraska N. U. Sup. (in some) ; Com. (in some) Elected by districts or at large

4 Kansas 3 Commissioners

Elected by districts

4
Maryland
N. U. Commissioners

Elected at large

N.U. Virginia

Dist. Supervisors

Elected by “Magisterial Districts" 4 West Virginia 3 * County Court”

Elected at large in most counties

6

2, 3

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