aforesaid, That from and after the first
day of May next, whoever shall either by
night or by day, secretly and dextrously
take and carry away any horse, mare or
gelding, to be in his, her or their
possession at least eight days, and shall
produce sufficient proof of the exploit,
shall besides keeping such horse, be
intitled to a plated bridle, a
cisingle and portmanteau, to be provided
by the town wherein such horse, mare
or gelding was taken.
And be it also enacted by the authority
aforesaid, That for the second
acquisition as aforesaid, and due
proof thereof made, the horse as
aforesaid, shall be the property of
the captor or captors; and the town
wherein such horse was taken, shall
reward him, her or them with a new
saddle with blue broad-cloth housings
trimmed with silver lace, and a pair
of spurs made of solid bullion, or at
least the value of two guineas.
And further be it enacted by the
authority aforesaid, That for the third,
and every successive horse, mare or
gelding taken and conveyed away as
aforesaid, a reward of half the value
of such horse (to be ascertained by
the appraisement of nine indifferent
men) shall be paid to the taker or
takers, and the horse, mare or
gelding so seized, to be and remain
his, her or there sole property.
And finally it is enacted by the
authority aforesaid, That no town,
precinct, manor or district, in the
distribution of the premiums and
rewards as above-mentioned, presume
to present to any thief or thieves,
or even dare to mention in his, her
or their presence, that terrifying
suffocating implement called a HALTER.
A true copy.
Though not himself a lawyer, Henry Livingston was a Justice of the Peace in a family rich with lawyers and judges.
Publications of the time were available to walk non-lawyer judges through the legal thickets.