Interesting Orders

June 1, 1869


All Virginians should obey the military commissioners laws.


Interesting Orders-- The following additional duties and powers of military commissioners and superintendents of election have been made public : 1. The military commissioners are invested with all the powers of justices of the peace of counties and police magistrates of cities, and will be governed in the execution of their duties by the laws of Virginia except so far as those laws may not conflict with the laws of the United States or with the orders issued from these headquarters; and in addition to any troops that maybe placed at their disposal they are given the control of the police force of the cities and the power of counties ; and all police officers, sheriffs, constables, and other peace officers, are required to obey and execute the orders of the military commissioners in all cases. 2. The military commissioners will promptly report to these headquarters all cases in which they assume jurisdiction, and the disposition made of each case. When parties are held for trial, either in continement or under bail, the cases will be so fully reported as to enable the Commanding General to decide whether they shall be tried by a military commission or brought before a civil court. The powers herein conferred upon military commissioners will not be constructed as extending to the inhabitants in their ordinary personal relations; they are conferred upon them to the end that the laws of the United States may be duly executed, and that full protection shall be given to all persons in their rights of person and property, and will not he exercised except in cases where the civil authorities ret use or fail to act, or there be satisfactory evidence that exact and impartial administration of justice cannot be secured through the civil courts. All persons, whether in authority or not, are required to obey.and execute all lawful orders of the military commissioners to the same extent and in the same manner that they are required by law to obey and execute the writs of civil magistrates. | 4. This order will not he construed to relieve civil officers in any degree from the faithful discharge of their duties. It is intended to aid and not to supersede them, except m cases 01 necessity.
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Ali O'Hara




“Interesting Orders,” Reconstructing Virginia, accessed May 18, 2022,