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Rankin Family History Project

New Haven Colony Laws


It is Ordered, That no mans person shall be imprisoned either for Fine, or Debt, to the Jurisdiction or Plantation, or particular person if any competent means of satisfaction from his estate, doe otherwise appear;

But if no such estate be known, nor can presently be found, or if contempt or other proud and offensive behaviour against the Court, or any Authority here setled, be mingled with his cause, he may be imprisoned, and kept in prison at his own charge, if he be able, till satisfaction be made, or till the Court which committed him or some superiour Court, see cause to release him.

Provided neverthelesse, That no mans person shall be kept in prison for debt, at the will of the Creditor, but when there appears some estate which he will not produce, in which case, any Court, or Commissioners Authorized by the Generall Court, may administer an Oath to the party, or any others, suspected to be employed, or privy to the conveying away, or concealing of such estate, or some of it;

But if any such person or persons, in such case, being so required, shall refuse to discover the truth by Oath, he shall be liable to such fine, as the Court duly weighing the case shall judge meet;

But if no estate can be found to pay or satisfie such just debt, or debts, every such debtor shall satisfie by service, if the Creditor, or Creditors require it, for such time, as the Court considering the debt, shall with due moderation judge meet;

But shall not be sold to any out of he United English Colonyes, if the debt grow by any ordinary way of borrowing, contract, or other engagement, and not by sinfull and heynous miscarriages, which disturb the publick peace, which the Court to whose cognizance each cases are proper, will duly weigh and consider.

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The Rankin Family History Project began in 1997 with a simple 3 generation family chart.  When our grandmother found out we were researching our family tree, she loaned us her copy of Maryland Catholics on the Frontier by Timothy J. O'Rourke which helped us discover our St. Louis & Perry County roots.  We are also doing research in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

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Rankin Family History Project     Sonoma County, California

Updated February 2000
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