[In framing the
Constitution of the Confederate States, the authors adopted, with numerous
elisions and additions, the language of the Constitution of the United
States, and followed the same order of arrangement of articles and
We, the People of the
Confederate States, each State acting in its sovereign and independent
character, in order to form a permanent Federal Government, establish
Justice, insure domestic Tranquillity and secure the Blessings of Liberty
to ourselves and our Posterity—invoking the favor and guidance of Almighty
God—do ordain and establish this Constitution for the Confederate States
All legislative powers
herein delegated, shall be vested in a Congress of the Confederate States,
which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.
The House of
Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by
the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall be
citizens of the Confederate States, and have the Qualifications requisite
for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature; but no
person of foreign birth, not a citizen of the Confederate States, shall be
allowed to vote for any officer, civil or political, State or federal.
No Person shall be a
Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty-five
Years, and be a citizen of the Confederate States, and who shall not, when
elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen.
Representatives and direct
Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included
within this Confederacy, according to their respective Numbers, which
shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons,
including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding
Indians not taxed, three-fifths of all slaves. The actual enumeration
shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress
of the Confederate States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years,
in such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The Number of Representatives
shall not exceed one for every fifty Thousand, but each State shall have
at Least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the
State of South Carolina shall be entitled to choose six, the State of
Georgia ten, the State of Alabama nine, the State of Florida two, the
State of Mississippi seven, the State of Louisiana six, and the State of
When vacancies happen in
the Representation from any State, the Executive Authority thereof shall
issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies.
The House of
Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall
have the sole Power of Impeachment; except that any judicial or other
federal officer resident and acting solely within the limits of any State,
may be impeached by a vote of two-thirds of both branches of the
The Senate of the
Confederate States shall be composed of two Senators from each State,
chosen for six years by the Legislature thereof, at the regular session
next immediately preceding the commencement of the term of service; and
each Senator shall have one Vote.
Immediately after they
shall be assembled in Consequence of the first Election, they shall be
divided as equally as may be into three Classes. The Seats of the Senators
of the first Class shall be vacated at the Expiration of the second Year,
of the second Class at the Expiration of the Fourth year, and of the third
Class at the Expiration of the sixth Year, so that one-third may be chosen
every second Year; and if Vacancies happen by Resignation, or otherwise,
during the Recess of the Legislature of any State, the Executive thereof
may make temporary Appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature,
which shall then fill such Vacancies.
No person shall be a
Senator who shall not have attained the Age of thirty Years, and be a
citizen of the Confederate States, and who shall not, when elected be an
inhabitant of the State for which he shall be chosen.
The Vice President of the
Confederate States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no
vote, unless they be equally divided.
The Senate shall chuse
their other officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the absence of
the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the Office of President of
the Confederate States.
The Senate shall have the
sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they
shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the Confederate
States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be
convicted without the Concurrence of two-thirds of the Members present.
Judgment in Cases of
Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from office, and
Disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honour, Trust or Profit
under the Confederate States: but the Party convicted shall nevertheless
be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment,
according to Law.
The Times, Places and
Manner of holding Elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be
prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof, subject to the
provisions of this Constitution; but the Congress may at any time by law
make or alter such Regulations, except as to the times and places of
The Congress shall assemble
at least once in every Year, and such Meeting shall be on the first Monday
in December, unless they shall by Law appoint a different Day.
Each House shall be the
Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and
a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller
Number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the
Attendance of Absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as
each House may Provide.
Each House shall determine
the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour,
and, with the Concurrence of two-thirds of the whole number, expel a
Each House shall keep a
Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same,
excepting such Parts as may in their judgment require Secrecy; and the
Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House on any question shall, at the
Desire of one-fifth of those Present, be entered on the Journal.
Neither House, during the
Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for
more than three days, nor to any other Place than that in which the two
Houses shall be sitting.
The Senators and
Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be
ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the Confederate
States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of
Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of
their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and
for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in
any other Place.
No Senator or
Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be
appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the Confederate
States, which have been created, or the Emoluments whereof shall have been
encreased during such time; and no Person holding any Office under the
Confederate States, shall be a Member of either House during his
Continuance in office. But Congress may, by law, grant to the principal
officer in each of the executive departments a seat upon the floor of
either House, with the privilege of discussing any measures appertaining
to his department.
All Bills for raising the
Revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives; but the Senate
may propose or concur with Amendments, as on other Bills.
Every Bill which shall have
passed both Houses, shall, before it becomes a Law, be presented to the
President of the Confederate States; If he approve he shall sign it, but
if not he shall return it, with his Objections, to that House in which it
shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their
Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration,
two-thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent,
together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall
likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two-thirds of that House, it
shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses shall
be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for
and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each House
respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within
ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the
Same shall be a law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the
Congress by their Adjournment prevent its return, in which Case it shall
not be a Law. The President may approve any appropriation and disapprove
any other appropriation in the same bill. In such case he shall, in
signing the bill, designate the appropriation disapproved, and shall
return a copy of such appropriations, with his objections, to the House in
which the bill shall have originated; and the same proceedings shall then
be had as in case of other bills disapproved by the President.
Every Order, Resolution or
Vote to which the Concurrence of both Houses may be necessary (except on a
question of Adjournment), shall be presented to the President of the
Confederate States; and before the Same shall take Effect, shall be
approved by him, or being disapproved, shall be repassed by two-thirds of
both Houses, according to the Rules and Limitations prescribed in the Case
of a Bill.
The Congress shall have
To lay and collect Taxes,
Duties, Imposts and Excises, for revenue necessary to pay the Debts,
provide for the common Defence, and carry on the government of the
Confederate States; but no bounties shall be granted from the treasury,
nor shall any duties or taxes on importations from foreign nations be laid
to promote or foster any branch of industry and all Duties, Imposts and
Excises shall be uniform throughout the Confederate States.
To borrow Money on the
credit of the Confederate States;
To regulate Commerce with
foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes;
but neither this, nor any other clause contained in this Constitution,
shall ever be construed to delegate the power to Congress to appropriate
money for any internal improvement intended to facilitate commerce; except
for the purpose of furnishing lights, beacons, and buoys, and other aids
to navigation upon the coasts, and the improvement of harbors and the
removing of obstruction in river navigation, in all which cases such
duties shall be laid on the navigation facilitated thereby, as may be
necessary to pay the costs and expenses thereof.
To establish uniform laws
of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies
throughout the Confederate States; but no law of Congress shall discharge
any debt contracted before the passage of the same;
To coin Money, regulate the
Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and
To provide for the
Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the
To establish Post Offices
and post routes; but the expenses of the Postoffice Department, after the
first day of March, in the year of our Lord eighteen hundred and
sixty-three, shall be paid out of its own revenue;
To promote the progress of
Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and
Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and
To constitute Tribunals
inferior to the supreme Court;
To define and punish
Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offences against the
Law of Nations;
To declare War, grant
Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land
To raise and support
Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer
Term than two Years;
To provide and maintain a
To make Rules for the
Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;
To provide for calling
forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Confederate States, suppress
Insurrections and repel Invasions;
To provide for organizing,
arming, and disciplining the Militia, and for governing such part of them
as may be employed in the Service of the Confederate States, reserving to
the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the
Authority of training the Militia according to the Discipline prescribed
To exercise exclusive
Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten
Miles square) as may, by Cession of one or more States, and the Acceptance
of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the Confederate States,
and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of
the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the Erection
of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, Dock-Yards, and other needful
To make all Laws which
shall be necessary and proper for carrying into Execution the foregoing
Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government
of the Confederate States, or in any Department or Officer thereof.
The importation of negroes
of the African race from any foreign country other than the slaveholding
States or territories of the United States of America, is hereby
forbidden; and Congress is required to pass such laws as shall effectually
prevent the same.
Congress shall also have
power to prohibit the introduction of slaves from any State not a member
of, or territory not belonging to, this Confederacy.
The Privilege of the Writ
of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion
or Invasion the public Safety may require it.
No Bill of Attainder, ex
post facto Law, or law denying or impairing the right of property in negro
slaves, shall be passed.
No Capitation, or other
direct, Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census or
Enumeration hereinbefore directed to be taken.
No Tax or Duty shall be
laid on Articles exported from any State, except by a vote of two-thirds
of both Houses.
No Preference shall be
given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State
over those of another.
No Money shall be drawn
from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a
regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and Expenditures of all
public Money shall be published from time to time.
Congress shall appropriate
no money from the Treasury, except by a vote of two-thirds of both Houses,
taken by yeas and nays, unless it be asked and estimated for by some one
of the heads of departments and submitted to Congress by the President; or
for the purpose of paying its own expenses and contingencies; or for the
payment of claims against the Confederate States, the justice of which
shall have been officially declared by a tribunal for the investigation of
claims against the Government, which it is hereby made the duty of
Congress to establish.
All bills appropriating
money shall specify, in Federal currency, the exact amount of each
appropriation, and the purposes for which it is made; and Congress shall
grant no extra compensation to any public contractor, officer, agent or
servant, after such contract shall have been made or such service
No Title of Nobility shall
be granted by the Confederate States; and no Person holding any Office of
Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress,
accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever,
from any King, Prince, or foreign State.
Congress shall make no law
respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise
thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right
of the people peaceably to assemble, and petition the Government for a
redress of grievances. [This and the following seven paragraphs are
Amendments Nos. 1 to 8 inclusive, United States Constitution.]
A well regulated Militia,
being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people
to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.
No Soldier shall, in time
of peace, be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor
in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The right of the people to
be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against
unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants
shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation,
and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or
things to be seized.
No person shall be held to
answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment
or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or
naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or
public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be
twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any
Criminal Case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life,
liberty or property without due process of law; nor shall private property
be taken for public use, without just compensation.
In all criminal
prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public
trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime
shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously
ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the
accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have
Compulsory process for obtaining Witnesses in his favour, and to have the
Assistance of Counsel for his defence.
In Suits at common law,
where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of
trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury shall be
otherwise re-examined in any Court of the Confederacy, than according to
the rules of the common law.
Excessive bail shall not be
required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments
Every law, or resolution
having the force of law, shall relate to but one subject and that shall be
expressed in the title.
No State shall enter into
any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and
Reprisal; coin Money; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in
Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, or ex post facto Law, or Law
impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.
No State shall, without the
consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts or Duties on Imports or Exports,
except what may be absolutely necessary for executing its inspection Laws;
and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by any State on
Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use of the Treasury of the
Confederate States; and all such Laws shall be subject to the Revision and
Controul of the Congress.
No State shall, without the
Consent of Congress, lay any Duty on Tonnage, except on sea-going vessels,
for the improvement of its rivers and harbors navigated by the said
vessels; but such duties shall not conflict with any treaties of the
Confederate States with foreign nations; and any surplus of revenue thus
derived shall, after making such improvement, be paid into the common
treasury; nor shall any State keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of
Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a
foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such
imminent Danger as will not admit of Delay. But when any river divides or
flows through two or more States, they may enter into compacts with each
other to improve the navigation thereof.
The executive power shall
be vested in a President of the Confederate States of America. He and the
Vice-President shall hold their offices for the term of six years; but the
President shall not be re-eligible. The President and the Vice-President
shall be elected as follows:
Each State shall appoint,
in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of
Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to
which the State may be entitled in the Congress; but no Senator or
Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the
Confederate States, shall be appointed an Elector.
The Electors shall meet in
their respective States, and vote by ballot for President and
Vice-President, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the
same State with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person
voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as
Vice-President, and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted
for as President, and of all persons voted for as Vice-President, and of
the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and
transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the Confederate States,
directed to the President of the Senate;—the President of the Senate
shall, in the presence of the Senate and House of Representatives, open
all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted;—The person
having the greatest number of votes for President shall be the President,
if such number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed;
and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the
highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as
President, the House of Representatives shall choose immediately, by
ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be
taken by States, the representation from each State having one vote; a
quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from
two-thirds of the States, and a majority of all the States shall be
necessary to a choice. And if the House of Representatives shall not
choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them,
before the fourth day of March next following then the Vice-President
shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other
constitutional disability of the President. The person having the greatest
number of votes as Vice-President shall be the Vice-President, if such
number be a majority of the whole number of Electors appointed, and if no
person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list the
Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall
consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of
the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person
constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible
to that of Vice-President of the Confederate States. [This paragraph is
identical with the Twelfth Amendment to the United States Constitution.]
The Congress may determine
the Time of chusing the Electors, and the Day on which they shall give
their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the Confederate
No Person except a natural
born Citizen of the Confederate States, or a citizen thereof at the time
of the Adoption of this Constitution, or a citizen thereof born in the
United States prior to the 20th of December, 1860, shall be eligible to
the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that
Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty-five Years, and
been fourteen years a Resident within the limits of the Confederate
States, as they may exist at the time of his election.
In Case of the Removal of
the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to
discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office, the same shall devolve
on the Vice-President, and the Congress may by Law provide for the Case of
Removal, Death, Resignation, or Inability, both of the President and
Vice-President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and
such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a
President shall be elected.
The President shall, at
stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall
neither be encreased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall
have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other
Emolument from the Confederate States, or any of them.
Before he enters on the
Execution of his Office, he shall take the following oath or affirmation:—
"I do solemnly swear (or
affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the
Confederate States of America, and will to the best of my Ability,
preserve, protect and defend the Constitution thereof."
The President shall be
Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the Confederate States, and of
the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of
the Confederate States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the
principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject
relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have
Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the Confederacy,
except in Cases of Impeachment.
He shall have Power, by and
with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided
two-thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by
and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors,
other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all
other Officers of the Confederate States, whose Appointments are not
herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law; but
the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as
they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the
Heads of Departments. The principal officer in each of the executive
departments, and all persons connected with the diplomatic service, maybe
removed from office at the pleasure of the President. All other civil
officers of the executive department may be removed at any time by the
President, or other appointing power, when their services are unnecessary,
or for dishonesty, incapacity, inefficiency, misconduct, or neglect of
duty; and when so removed, the removal shall be reported to the Senate,
together with the reasons therefor.
The President shall have
Power to fill up all vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the
Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the End of their
next Session. But no person rejected by the Senate shall be re-appointed
to the same office during their ensuing recess.
The President shall from
time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the
Confederacy, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he
shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary Occasions,
convene both Houses, or either of them, and in Case of Disagreement
between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them
to such Time as he shall think proper; he shall receive Ambassadors and
other public Ministers; he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully
executed, and shall Commission all the officers of the Confederate States.
The President, Vice
President and all civil Officers of the Confederate States, shall be
removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason,
Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors.
The judicial Power of the
Confederate States shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such
inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and
establish. The both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their
Offices during good Behavior, and shall, at stated Times, receive for
their Services a Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their
Continuance in Office.
The judicial Power shall
extend to all cases arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the
Confederate States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their
Authority;—to all cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers, and
Consuls-—to all cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction;—to
Controversies to which the Confederate States shall be a Party;—to
Controversies between two or more States; —between a State and Citizens of
another State where the State is Plaintiff;—between Citizens claiming
lands under grants of different States,—and between a State, or the
Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects; but no State
shall be sued by a citizen or subject of any foreign State.
In all Cases affecting
Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a
State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction.
In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have
appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such Exceptions, and
under such Regulations as the Congress shall make.
The trial of all Crimes,
except in Cases of Impeachment, shall be by Jury; and such Trial shall be
held in the State where the said Crimes shall have been committed; but
when not committed within any State, the Trial shall be at such Place or
Places as the Congress may by Law have directed.
Treason against the
Confederate States shall consist only in levying War against them, or in
adhering to their Enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be
convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same
overt Act, or on Confession in open Court.
The Congress shall have
Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason
shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of
the Person attainted.
Full Faith and Credit shall
be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial
Proceedings of every other State. And the Congress may by general Laws
prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be
proved, and the Effect thereof.
The Citizens of each State
shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the
several States, and shall have the right of transit and sojourn in any
State of this Confederacy, with their slaves and other property; and the
right of property in said slaves shall not be impaired.
A person charged in any
State with Treason, Felony, or other Crime against the laws of such State,
who shall flee from Justice, and be found in another State, shall on
Demand of the executive Authority of the State from which he fled, be
delivered up, to be removed to the State having Jurisdiction of the Crime.
No slave or other Person
held to Service or Labour in any State or Territory of the Confederate
States, under the laws thereof, escaping or unlawfully carried into
another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be
discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim
of the Party to whom such slave belongs, or to whom such Service or Labour
may be due.
Other States may be
admitted into this Confederacy by a vote or two-thirds of the whole House
of Representatives and two-thirds of the Senate, the Senate voting by
States; but no new State shall be formed or erected within the
Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction
of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the
Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress.
The Congress shall have
Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations concerning
the property of the Confederate States, including the lands thereof.
The Confederate States may
acquire new territory; and Congress shall have power to legislate and
provide governments for the inhabitants of all territory belonging to the
Confederate States, lying without the limits of the several States; and
may permit them, at such times and in such manner as it may by law
provide, to form States to be admitted into the Confederacy. In all such
territory the institution of negro slavery, as it now exists in the
Confederate States, shall be recognized and protected by Congress and by
the territorial government; and the inhabitants of the several Confederate
States and territories shall have the right to take to such territory any
slaves lawfully held by them in any of the States or Territories of the
The Confederate States
shall guarantee to every State that now is, or hereafter may become, a
member of this Confederacy, a Republican Form of Government, and shall
protect each of them against invasion; and on Application of the
Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature is not in session)
against domestic Violence.
Upon the demand of any
three States, legally assembled in their several Conventions, the Congress
shall summon a Convention of all the States, to take into consideration
such amendments to the Constitution as the said States shall concur in
suggesting at the time when the said demand is made; and should any of the
proposed amendments to the Constitution be agreed on by the said
Convention—voting by States— and the same be ratified by the Legislatures
of two-thirds of the several States, or by Conventions in two-thirds
thereof—as the one or the other mode of ratification may be proposed by
the general Convention—they shall henceforward form a part of this
Constitution. But no State shall, without its consent, be deprived of its
equal representation in the Senate.
The Government established
by this Constitution is the successor of the Provisional Government of the
Confederate States of America, and all laws passed by the latter shall
continue in force until the same shall be repealed or modified; and all
the officers appointed by the same shall remain in office until their
successors are appointed and qualified or the offices abolished.
All Debts contracted and
Engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall
be as valid against the Confederate States under this Constitution, as
under the Provisional Government.
This Constitution and the
Laws of the Confederate States made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties
made, or which shall be made, under the authority of the Confederate
States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the judges in every
State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any
State to the Contrary notwithstanding.
The Senators and
Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State
Legislatures, and all executive and judicial officers, both of the
Confederate States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or
Affirmation to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever
be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the
The enumeration in the
Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or
disparage others retained by the people of the several States. [This
paragraph and the next are identical with the Ninth and Tenth Amendments
to the United States Constitution.]
The powers not delegated to
the Confederate States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the
States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people thereof.
The Ratification of the
Conventions of five States, shall be sufficient for the Establishment of
this Constitution between the States so ratifying the same.
When five States shall have
ratified this Constitution, in the manner before specified, the Congress
under the Provisional Constitution shall prescribe the time for holding
the election of President and Vice President; and for the meeting of the
electoral college; and for counting the votes and inaugurating the
President. They shall also prescribe the time for holding the first
election of members of Congress under this Constitution, and the time for
assembling the same. Until the assembling of such Congress, the Congress
under the Provisional Constitution shall continue to exercise the
legislative powers granted them; not extending beyond the time limited by
the Constitution of the Provisional Government.
Adopted unanimously March