Springfield's First City Charter
From Directory of the City of Springfield
John W. Kees & Co., Springfield. 1852
Sec. 9. That the City Council shall appoint or provide for the election by the qualified voters of the said city, of all assessors and collectors of special taxes, city surveyors and engineers, street commissioners, supervisors of highways, health officers, weighers of hay, measurers of wood and coal, and such other officers as shall be necessary for the good government of said city, and the due exercise of its corporate powers; and all city officers whose term of office is not prescribed, and whose powers and duties are not defined in this act, shall perform such duties and exercise such powers, and shall hold their offices for such term of time not exceeding one year, as shall be prescribed by ordinance. And whenever the office of Mayor, Trustee, Recorder, or any other officers elected or appointed under the provisions and authority of this act, or appointed by the City Council, shall become vacant by death, resignation, disability, disqualification, removal from the city, or otherwise, it shall be the duty of the city council, as soon as may be, to appoint some suitable person having the requisite qualifications to fill such vacancy, and the person so appointed shall hold such office for the residue of the term for which his predecessor was elected or appointed; and in case of the sickness or temporary absence of the Mayor from the city, the Trustees shall chose one of their own number to preside over their deliberations, who shall ex-officio act as Mayor during such sickness or absence as aforesaid, and shall have the power and authority to which the Mayor shall be entitled. The City Council shall determine by ordinance the compensation and fees of all persons holding office under the authority of this act except so far as shall be herein provided, and shall in the same manner determine the fines, penalties and forfeitures to which such persons so holding office shall be subject for negligence, carelessness, or misconduct in office, or positive violation of official duty.
Sec. 10. That the said City Council shall have the custody, care, superintendence, management, and control of all the real and personal estate, and other corporate property belonging to said city, and all the real and personal estate, money, funds, stocks, revenues, and privileges which may belong to the common council of the town of Springfield, when this act shall take effect and be in force, and all the real estate, personal property, money, funds, stocks, and revenues, which from time to time may be owned by, or of right belong to said city, with full powers to purchase, hold, possess, use, occupy, sell, and convey, the same for the use and benefit of said city and the inhabitants thereof.
Sec. 11. That the said City Council shall have power, and it is hereby made their duty, to make and publish, from time to time, all such ordinances as shall be necessary to secure said city and the inhabitants thereof against injuries by fire, thieves, robbers, burglars, and all other persons violating the public peace, for the supression of riots, gaming, and indecent or disorderly conduct, for the punishment of all lewed and lascivious behavior, and for the apprehension of idle, dissolute and lawless persons. They shall have power from time to time to make and publish all such laws and ordinances as to them may seem necessary to provide for the safety, preserve the health, promote the prosperity, and improve the morals, order, comfort, and convenience of said city, and the inhabitants thereof, and to impose fines, forfeitures, and penalties on all persons offending against the laws and ordinances of said city, and to provide for the prosecution, recovery, and collection thereof.
Sec. 12. That the said City Council shall have power to establish whenever they may think necessary, a board of health, for said city, and to invest it with such powers and impose upon it such duties, as shall be necessary to secure the said city, and the inhabitants thereof, from the evils, distress, and calamaties of contagious, malignant, and infectious diseases, to provide for its proper organization, and the appointment of the proper officers thereof, and to make such by-laws, rules and regulations for its government and support as shall be required for enforcing the most prompt and efficient performance of its duties and the lawful exercise of its powers, and also if said Council shall deem it necessary, to purchase grounds and erect a city hospital, and provide laws for the government of the same.
Sec. 13. That the said City Council shall have power, whenever the peace and safety of the city may rquire it, to establish a city watch, and organize the same under the general superintendence of the City Marshal, or other proper officer of police, and prescribe its duties and define its powers, in such a manner as will most effectually preserve the peace of said city, and secure the inhabitants thereof from personal violence, and their property from fire and unlawful depredation.
Sec. 14. That the said City Council shall erect, establish, and regulate all the markets and market places in said city, for the sale of provisions, vegetables, and other articles necessary for the sustenance, comfort and convenience of said city, and the inhabitants thereof; provided, that nothing herein contained shall be so construed as to authorize the retailing of spirituous, vinous, or malt liquors, in said market.
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Springfield in 1852
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Then & Now