Independent Militia Companies

“[T]he States reserve to themselves the power to form Independent Companies, no matter what Congress may want. Congress can observe Independent Companies’ right to exist, but not obstruct its exercise. For, being constitutional in nature, that right neither derives from, nor needs, any “allow[ance]” from Congress. And the power to form Independent Companies being reserved to the States, Congress has no discretion to make an “allow[ance]” for it.”

The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 1257-58.

Also see Militia: Not Part of the Regular Armed Forces of the Union or of the States Militiamen Firearms Kept in the HomeRegular Armed Forces and Militia Firearms •  Militia: Reliance on the Free Market for Arms •  Militia: Immune From Contemporary “Gun Control” • Militia: Largely Outside the Jurisdiction of Congress


Independent Militia Companies

Contrary to popular belief circulating among many patriots today, constitutional Militia are not formed by a well-intentioned group of people in possession guns calling themselves “militia”. As a matter of historical fact and law, “well regulated Militia” were governmental institutions organized pursuant to statute, not private associations. The Independent Militia Company was established by relatively small groups (approximately 20-100) of people through the legislature, which gave them legal authority—something a private group calling themselves “militia” has never, can never, and will never accomplish.

Independent Companies were not merely ceremonial or honorary outfits. They were usually formed by those who desired more specialized training and discipline not acquired in standard Militia service.  And to a great degree organized, armed, disciplined, and trained themselves separate from the Militia’s regular establishment. (footnote 1)

Rhode Island for example, permitted, encouraged, and provided a procedure for her residents to organize “Independent Companies” as separate components of her Militia. As with the Trained Bands, Independent Companies could consist of infantry, (footnote 2) cavalry, (footnote 3) and even artillery. (footnote 4) (footnote p. 103) While Militia service was compulsory for every able-bodied adult, members of Independent Companies would receive exemptions from their standard Militia service since they voluntarily chose to form a more specialized Independent Militia Company upon the approval of the legislature.

  • Independent Companies were the products of governmental, not merely private action. Three statutes from Rhode Island—from 1774 to 1776.

    Although the statutes creating them were variously titled—such as “An ACT for erecting…”, “AN ACT establishing…”, or “An ACT to incorporate…”—all of Rhode Island’s Independent Companies were the products of governmental, not merely private, action: invariably, a petition by certain individuals to the General Assembly for permission to form such a Company, followed by a specific statutory grant of authority for that purpose alone. Thus, the enabling legislation might declare that:

    • • [1755] “they are hereby made, constituted, and declared a special Company, to be called and known by the Name of, THE ARTILLERY COMPANY, and by that Name shall have and take perpetual Succession”(footnote 1) or

    • • [1774, 1775, and 1776] “this Assembly * * * have Ordained, Constituted, and Granted, That they * * * be, and they are hereby, declared to be an Independent Company, by the Name of The Light-Infantry, for the County of Providence: And by that Name they shall have perpetual Succession”; (footnote 2) or

    • • [1774] “[i]t is hereby Enacted, Granted, Ordered, and Ordained, That the said Company now inlisted, and which shall hereafter inlist * * * be * * * incorporated into a distinct and separate Military Company, to be called * * * The Providence Grenadier Company”. (footnote 3)

    Footnotes:

    1.) EN-456 — An ACT for erecting an ARTILLERY COMPANY in the Towns of Westerly and Charlestown, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the Governor and Company of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence-Plantations, in New-England, in AMERICA; begun and held (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honour the Governor) and held at Providence, on Wednesday the first of January, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Fifty-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 2, at {63}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    2.) EN-457 — AN ACT establishing an Independent Company, by the Name of The Light-Infantry for the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, by Adjournment, at Newport, within and for the said Colony, on the Second Monday in June, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-Four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {36-37}. Accord, An ACT establishing an Independent Company, in the County of Newport, by the Name of the Newport LIGHT-INFANTRY, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {94}; An ACT establishing an Independent Company, by the Name of the Pawtuxet Rangers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {105}; An ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Scituate Hunters, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode- Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {128}; An ACT for establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Train of Artillery, in the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {134}; AN ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Providence Fusiliers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New- England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {138}; An ACT establishing an Independent Company in the County of King’s County, by the Name of the Kingston Reds, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Deputy-Governor) at Providence, within and for the Colony aforesaid, on Tuesday, the Thirty-first Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7 [8], at {141}; An ACT establishing an Independent Troop of Horse in the County of Providence, by the Name of the Captain-General’s Cavaliers for the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Deputy-Governor) at Providence, within and for the Colony aforesaid, on Tuesday, the Thirty-first Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7 [8], at {144}; AN ACT establishing an Independent Company by the Name of the Smithfield and Cumberland RANGERS, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden at Newport, within and for the said Colony, on the First Wednesday in May, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-six, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 8 [9], at {16-17}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    3.) EN-458 — An ACT establishing a Company, in the Town of Providence, to be called, and known by, the Name of the Providence Grenadier Company, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {97-98}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

  • ‘The Bristol Grenadiers’ : A prime example of an Independent Militia Company—a component part of ‘a well regulated Militia’ to which the 2nd Amendment refers.

    The charter of “The Bristol Grenadiers”, granted in 1799, provided in pertinent part as follows:

    WHEREAS the preservation of this State and the maintenance of its liberties, at all times depend, under God, in a great measure, upon an acquaintance with military discipline; and at this critical and alarming period, when our country is threatened with foreign invasions, it becomes the indispensable duty of every American citizen, to place himself in a situation where he can be useful in repelling the attacks of its enemies. For that purpose, * * * [some thirty-seven named individuals], inhabitants of the town of Bristol, in the county of Bristol, have formed themselves into a military body, and prayed this Assembly to grant them a charter of incorporation, that they, and such others as may hereafter be joined to them, not exceeding sixty-four men rank and file, may be constituted an independent company, by the name of the Bristol Grenadiers.

    Wherefore this Assembly, to encourage their laudable design, promote military skill and discipline, have Ordained, Constituted and Granted, * * * That the said Petitioners, and such others as may be added to them, not exceeding sixty-four men rank and file, be * * * declared to be, an independent company, by the name of The Bristol Grenadiers, by that name to have perpetual succession, and to have and enjoy the privileges and immunities hereafter granted.

    Imprimis. The said company shall and may, * * * in every year, meet and assemble together and choose their officers, to wit: One Captain, one Lieutenant, and one Ensign, and such noncommissioned officers as are or may be necessary for training, disciplining and well ordering said company; at which election no officer shall be chosen but by the greater number of votes then present. The Captain, Lieutenant and Ensign, to be approved of by the Governor * * * , and to be commissioned * * * in the same manner as other military officers are in this State.

    Secondly. That the said company shall have liberty to meet and exercise themselves upon such days as they shall think proper, and shall not be subject to the orders and directions of the Colonel, or other field- officer of the [Militia] regiment in whose district they live, at any other time than when called into actual service, or upon regimental trainings, or general muster days; and that they be obliged to meet, at least four times a year, upon the penalty of paying, to and for the use of said company, the following fines, to wit: The Captain, for every day’s absence six dollars, the Lieutenant and Ensign four dollars each, * * * noncommissioned officers three dollars each, and each private soldier two dollars; to be collected by warrant of distress * * * .

    Thirdly. That the said company * * * make such laws, rules and orders among themselves, as they shall deem expedient for the well ordering and disciplining of the said company: Provided that no fine exceed the sum of one dollar for any one offence * * * .

    Fourthly. That if any officer * * * shall be disapproved of by the Governor, or shall remove out of said town to any other place, or shall be removed by death, then and in such case the Captain of the said company, or other superior officer for the time being shall call a meeting for the election of another * * * in manner as aforesaid.

    Fifthly. That the persons aforesaid, and all those who shall be duly enlisted into said company, so long as they shall continue therein, shall be exempted from bearing arms, or doing other military duty, watching and warding excepted, in the several companies or training bands in whose district they live.

    Sixthly. that the commissioned officers of the said company * * * shall be of the Court-Martial in the district in which they live * * * .

    Seventhly. That the said company be accoutred, uniformed and equipped, in such manner as by a majority of them in a public meeting shall be agreed upon, at their own expense. (footnote 1)

    Footnotes:

    EN-2037 — An Act to incorporate the Bristol Grenadiers, At the General Assembly of the State of Rhode- Island and Providence Plantations, begun and holden at South-Kingstown, within and for the State aforesaid, on the last Monday in October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Ninety-nine, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 18 [20], at {23-25}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 1253 -1254.

  • Independent Companies were not the sole final judges of their readiness, but were subject to inspections on that score.

    Howsoever they may have been equipped, Independent Companies were not the sole and final judges of their own readiness, but (as with other components of Rhode Island’s Militia) were subject to inspections on that score. For example, in 1776 the General Assembly ordered that

    * * * [E]ach captain * * * of the several independent companies, and companies of militia in this state, [shall] notify his company to appear at some proper place * * * under arms, with all accoutrements, agreeably to law.

    That such captain * * * make out a list of the deficiency of each person in each article.

    That he send a proper officer to the dwelling-house of each person not attending, to examine how far such person be deficient.

    That each captain * * * of the companies of militia, make a proper return thereof, to the colonel of the regiment * * * .

    That each captain * * * of the independent companies, make a like return to th[e General] Assembly[.]” (footnote 1)

     

    And in 1779, an inspector was “directed to cause strict examination to be made of the state of the arms * * * of the militia, alarm and independent companies, within this state * * * as by law is required”, and to “cause returns to be made to him of the particular deficiencies in each Company within five days next after such examination”. (footnote 2)

    Footnotes:

    1.) EN-495 — Proceedings of the General Assembly, held for the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, at East Greenwich, on Thursday, the 21st day of November, 1776, in Rhode Island Records, Volume 8, at 44-45. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 230.

    2.) EN-496 — Proceedings of the General Assembly, held for the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, at East Greenwich, on the second Monday in September, 1779, in Rhode Island Records, Volume 8, at 595. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 231.

  • To encourage and reward the formation of Independent Companies, Rhode Island’s General Assembly often granted them special prerogatives and privileges.

    To encourage and reward the formation of Independent Companies, Rhode Island’s General Assembly often granted them special prerogatives and privileges. For example:

    • • [1775] “[U]pon all general Reviews, and general Musters, the * * * Company shall rank the first Independent Company for the County of King’s County[.]” (footnote 1)

    • • [1774] “[The] Company, on all Field-Days, [shall] take the Right Wing of the Third Battalion in the County of Providence[.]” (footnote 2)

    • • [1774] “[U]pon all Field-Days, and public Trainings, the * * * Company of Light-Infantry shall hold their Rank and Station in the Front of the left Wing of the Regiment in whose District they are included[.]” (footnote 3)

    • • [1774] “[O]n all general Field-Days, when the whole Providence Regiment shall be embodied, the Officers and Soldiers of the [Independent] Grenadier Company may * * * appear with their proper Arms, and in their Uniform, and on their proper Ground, * * * holding, and enjoying, at all Times, and upon all Occasions, such Rank, and Precedence, as is proper to them as a Grenadier Company[.]” (footnote 4)

    • • [1774] “Commissioned Officers of the * * * Company * * * shall take Rank before the Commissioned Officers of Militia, in the Colony[.]” (footnote 5)

    • • [1774] “[T]he * * * Company shall be under the particular Command of the present Major of the First Battalion in the County of Providence. And in Case of his being hereafter advanced in Command, * * * the * * * Company shall still continue to belong to, and be under his Command, and be advanced with him to that Place and Station in the Regiment, which Companies, commanded by Officers of that Rank to which he may be advanced * * * are entitled to take[.]” (footnote 6)

    • • [1775] “[F]or the further Encouragement of the * * * Troop, it is further granted to them, who are (as this Assembly is informed by their humble Petition) designed to be composed of such as have sustained Offices in the civil and military Departments, and others of Worth, that [their officers be commissioned in various high ranks.]” (footnote 7)

    Footnotes:

    1.) EN-511 — An ACT establishing an Independent Company in the County of King’s County, by the Name of the Kingston Reds, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode- Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Deputy-Governor) at Providence, within and for the Colony aforesaid, on Tuesday, the Thirty-first Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7 [8], at {143}. To the same effect, An ACT establishing an Independent Company, by the Name of the Pawtuxet Rangers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {107} (“Second Independent Company”). Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232.

    2.) EN-512 — An ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Scituate Hunters, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {130}. The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232.

    3.) EN-513 — AN ACT establishing an Independent Company, by the Name of The Light-Infantry for the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, by Adjournment, at Newport, within and for the said Colony, on the Second Monday in June, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-Four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {39}. Also seeThe Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232.

    4.) EN-514 — An ACT establishing a Company, in the Town of Providence, to be called, and known by, the Name of the Providence Grenadier Company, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {99-100}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232.

    5.) EN-515 — AN ACT establishing an Independent Company, by the Name of the Company of Light-Infantry, of the Town of Gloucester, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {122}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232.

    6.) EN-516 — AN ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Providence Fusiliers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {140}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 232-233.

    7.) EN-517 — An ACT establishing an Independent Troop of Horse in the County of Providence, by the Name of the Captain-General’s Cavaliers for the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Deputy-Governor) at Providence, within and for the Colony aforesaid, on Tuesday, the Thirty-first Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7 [8], at {146}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 233.

  • Rhode Island considered her Independent Companies to be special establishments, with their own peculiar status, which the general Militia laws recognized.

    Doubtlessly because of their origins in private petitions, Rhode Island considered her Independent Companies to be special establishments, with their own peculiar status. So the general Militia laws recognized:

    • • [1766] “[N]othing in this Act * * * shall * * * take away or diminish any of the Liberties, Privileges,or Immunities of any independent * * * Companies established by Law in this Colony; but that the same, according to their Establishment, be preserved to them entire, any Thing herein before contained to the contrary notwithstanding[.]” (footnote 1)

    • • [1779] “[T]his Act shall not * * * have Influence upon or prejudice any Charters already granted to Independent Companies[.] (footnote 2)

    Footnotes:

    1.) EN-460 — An ACT, regulating the Militia in this Colony, in Public Laws of Rhode Island, 1767, at 189-190. This Act was part of An ACT, establishing the Revisement of the Laws of this Colony, and for the putting the same in Force, in A LAW, Made and passed at the General Assembly of the Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, held at Providence on the First Monday in December, 1766, in Public Laws of Rhode Island, 1767, at 3-5. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    2.) EN-461 —An ACT for the better forming, regulating and conducting the military Force of this State, AT the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the Governor and Company of the State of Rhode-Island, and Providence-Plantations, begun and holden at South-Kingstown, within and for the State aforesaid, on the last Monday in October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-nine, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 10 [12], at {38}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

  • The Independent Company special status, however, was conditioned upon faithful compliance with the statutory grants, as enactments from 1774 made clear.

    The special status granted to Independent Militia Companies was conditioned upon faithful compliance with the statutory grants, as enactments from 1774 made clear:

    • “[A]s soon as said Company shall cease to do their Duty * * * this Grant shall be void, and all Persons * * * shall do Duty in the Company in whose District they live, in the same Manner as if they had belonged to said Trained Bands.(footnotes 1)

    • “[I]n Case the Rules and Regulations, in this Charter contained, be not performed and complied with, then this Charter shall cease, determine, and be null and void.” (footnote 2)

    • “[T]he * * * Grant is on this Condition, that if the * * * Company shall, for the Space of One Year, neglect to Train, and exercise themselves, that then the * * * Charter shall be void and forfeit.” (footnote 3)

    Footnotes:

    1.) EN-462 — An ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Scituate Hunters, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {130}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 226.

    2.) EN-463 — An ACT for establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Train of Artillery, in the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode- Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {136}. Accord, AN ACT incorporating a Military Company, by the Name of the North-Providence Rangers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {147}. The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 226.

    3.) EN-464 — AN ACT establishing a Military Company, by the Name of the Providence Fusiliers, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England in America, begun and holden, in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the First Monday in December, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {141}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 226.

  • Revitalize ‘the Militia of the several States’ as the centerpiece of the ‘Homeland Security’ structure as the Constitution requires.

    If you organize the Militia as the centerpiece of the “Homeland Security” structure, then you are prepared for essentially any kind of crisis you can imagine. Why? Because you’re bringing hundreds of thousands and millions of intelligent people together to discuss these different scenarios. And these people have all sorts of diverse skills. It would be extraordinarily difficult to imagine a situation for which there couldn’t be a response worked out ahead of time through this kind of structure. That response might not be relevant in every area of the country, but it would be relevant where it was needed. Obviously the people who would be thinking about levees in New Orleans would not be thinking about that problem in Virginia. But we certainly have sufficient specialists all over the country to handle any “Homeland Security” problem that we could possibly run into or imagine and to devise some kind of workable solution for it. A solution that would take maximum advantage of local people and it would leave the maximum amount of control in the hands of those people. Which is what you want if you’re a self-governing country. This is not to say that if there weren’t enough experts on levees in New Orleans that they couldn’t call upon people in Alabama or Mississippi, and share resources. Of course they could, nothing prevents that from happening. And that makes it more obvious that any problem could be solved. Because if you could draw upon the resources and skills of everyone in this country, for any local problem, is it possible to imagine that local problem couldn’t be solved? What’s the alternative? Letting a few bureaucrats in Washington, D.C. figure this out? We’ve seen how well they’ve done with the monetary system, we’ve seen how well they’ve done with the immigration system, should we go down this list of how well they’ve done? These people have failed in every major crisis situation that’s been presented to them in recent history— in every major one they have failed or at least made the situation worse. And in many instances it’s because they didn’t prepare for the future because they weren’t concerned with what would happen to We the People in the future. They were only concerned with maintaining their power in the present.

It is important to note—Militia service in the pre-constitutional period was required by law of every able-bodied adult free male between 16-65 years of age in the American Colonies. Independent Militia Companies, were a voluntary forms of Militia service, like the Minutemen. So while serving in a well regulated militia was compulsory, individuals forming an Independent Company was voluntary. To establish an Independent Militia Company required the approval of the legislature. All members of any Independent Company were required to conform to the standards of their own charter. Failure to do so would result in the revocation of the charter, returning those members back to standard Militia service.

In contradistinction to contemporary times, in pre-constitutional Rhode Island citizens who sought to form Independent Companies were considered praiseworthy, not suspicious, let alone possibly subject to prosecution for supposedly criminal acts. (footnote 5)

Organizing Militias as the centerpiece of the “Homeland Security” structure would take maximum advantage of local people and would leave the maximum amount of governmental control in the hands of those people. The Independent Militia Company, as a matter of fact and law, would be the most efficient and direct means for local people to revitalize the constitutional Militia. The initial step, to organize, educate, and empower citizens to properly make that transition is the CHSACitizen’s Homeland Security Association.

  • Footnotes

    1.) See The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 224-234.

    2.) EN-453 — E.g., An ACT establishing an Independent Company, in the County of Newport, by the Name of the Newport LIGHT-INFANTRY, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America; begun and holden, at Providence, within and for the said Colony, on the last Wednesday in October, One Thousand, Seven Hundred and Seventy-four, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7, at {93-97}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    3.) EN-454 — E.g., An ACT establishing an Independent Troop of Horse in the County of Providence, by the Name of the Captain-General’s Cavaliers for the County of Providence, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the GOVERNOR and COMPANY of the English Colony of Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations, in New-England, in America, begun and holden (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Deputy-Governor) at Providence, within and for the Colony aforesaid, on Tuesday the Thirty-first Day of October, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventy-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 7 [8], at {144-147}.  Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    4.) EN-455 — E.g., An ACT for erecting an ARTILLERY COMPANY in the Towns of Westerly and Charlestown, At the GENERAL ASSEMBLY of the Governor and Company of the English Colony of Rhode-Island, and Providence-Plantations, in New-England, in AMERICA; begun (in Consequence of Warrants issued by his Honor the Governor) and held at Providence, on Wednesday the first of January, One Thousand Seven Hundred and Fifty-five, in Rhode Island Acts and Resolves, Volume 2, at {63-65}. Also see The Sword and Sovereignty: The Constitutional Principles of “the Militia of the several States”, Front Royal, Virginia CD ROM Edition 2012, by Dr. Edwin Vieira, Jr., page 225.

    5.) See, e.g., New Hampshire Revised Statutes, Title VIII, Chapter 111, § 111:15.