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should be deemed common or public, as the river itself, under the conservation of the community ; and should be reserved for future improvements, as for the accommodation, not only of fishermen, but also of manufacturers, traders, and of all industrious strangers; and docks or navigable cuts, whenever the level of the country will permit, should be made from the river, as far back, at least, as the centre between every two townships.
The spaces between the squares are left for roads and common communications between the several lots; and the roads which divide two distinct townships should be still more spacious for the common use of all the inhabitants, the cartage of their produce and other traffic, the driving of cattle, &c.; and a spacious road, to be formed lengthways throughout the whole settlement, ought, in forming the lots, to be reserved through the centre of each township; the central lots, which will thereby be diminished in size, will find ample compensation in value by their situation on the great central road.
I would likewise deviate from the original plan of the author, with respect to the situation of the 5760 acres of woodland for each township, which, I conceive, had better be reserved in one of the most distant squares, at an angular situation from each town, instead of being in the
opposite square, according to his proposal ; for the towns will not only be more healthy, by having the uncleared lands more distant from them, but also the inhabitants, when on watch and ward duty, will be better enabled to discover the approach of any lurking savages or other enemies in time of war.
Old Jewry, Aug. 1, 1783.
The third wheel of their government, which, as we mentioned before, turned within the other two, was the constitution and magistracy of every city within itself. As the weight of superintending the affairs of every tribe was much lightened to the prince thereof, by the subordinate jurisdiction of the heads of families, the political burden of these latter was, in like manner, considerably alleviated by the share of authority which appertained to the rulers of cities; every tribe having several cities belonging to it, and every city being inhabited by a great number of families.
The chief magistrate in these corporations was called the ruler of the city.
Some have questioned whether there were not more than one of these chief magistrates in every city : that there were many subordinate ones, having gradual authority under one another, is very plain ; and that these were the same whom Moses constituted to be judges of the people in
the wilderness, by the advice of Jethro his fatherin-law. Exod. xviii. 25. “ He chose able men out of all Israel,” (but I have already proved that the able men were really elected by the people,) “and made them heads over the people ; rulers of thousands, rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens. And they judged the people at all seasons : the hard causes they brought unto Moses, but every small matter they judged themselves.”
When, therefore, the tribes came to have cities belonging to them, there these magistrates presided and exercised their jurisdiction; which consisted principally of these three parts :~First, to convene and hold senates and councils, in order to enact such by-laws as were expedient for that body corporate, of which they were members. Secondly, to commission and authorize the judges to enter upon and to determine, in the judiciary way, such small matters as lay properly within their cognizance. And, thirdly, to make a part of the great council of the nation, as often as it was summoned to assemble by that person who held the helm of government.
These are they who are intended in that precept, where it is said, (Deat. xvi. 18,)“Judges and officers shalt thou make thee in all thy gates, which the Lord thy God giveth thee throughout thy tribes." Which officers we find mentioned
upon other occasions. (Deut. xxix. 10.) “ Ye stand this day all of you before the Lord your God; your captains of your tribes, your elders, and your officers.” Again, Moses says, (Deut. xxxi. 28,) “ Gather unto me all the elders of your tribes, and your officers.” And we find Joshua, when he was old and stricken in age, (Joshua, xxiii. 2,) "called for all Israel, and for their elders, and for their heads, and for their judges, and for their officers.”
So, when David calls together the great congregation to declare his purpose about the building of the temple, (1 Chron. xxviii. 1,). we read of the captains over the thousands, and the captains over the hundreds, with the officers, being summoned upon that occasion. And, afterwards, we are told that Solomon made a speech unto all Israel, (2 Chron. i. 2,)“ to the captains of thousands, and of hundreds, and to the judges, and to every governor in all Israel, the chief of the fathers.” And thus, when that pious prince, Hezekiah, was resolved upon a reformation both of religion and manners, throughout his kingdom, it is said, (2 Chron. xxix. 20,) “ Then Hezekiah the king rose early, and gathered the rulers of the city, and went up to the house of the Lord.”
As to their judiciary capacity, they were not, strictly speaking, judges themselves, but had the