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1903 S.C. Acts 127

§ 1. [I]t shall be unlawful for any one to carry about the person, whether concealed or not, any pistol less than twenty inches long and three pounds in weight; and it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to manufacture, sell or offer for sale, lease, rent, barter, exchange, or transport for sale or into this state, any pistols of less length and weight.

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Act of Feb. 20, 1901, ch. 435, §1, 1901 S.C. Acts 748

Sec. 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina: That from and after the first day of July 1902 it shall be unlawful for any one to carry about the person whether concealed or not any pistol less than 20 inches long and 3 pounds in weight. And it shall be unlawful for any person, firm or corporation to manufacture, sell or offer for sale, or transport for sale or use into this State, any pistol of less length and weight. Any violation of this Section shall be punished by a fine of not more than one hundred dollars, or imprisonment for not more than thirty days and in case of a violation by a firm or corporation it shall forfeit the sum of one hundred dollars to and for the use of the school fund of the County wherein the violation takes place to be recovered as other fines and forfeitures: Provided, this Act shall not apply to peace officers in the actual discharge of their duties, or to persons while on their own premises.

. . .

Sec. 3. In case it shall appear to the satisfaction of the presiding Judge or Magistrate before whom such offender is tried that the defendant had good reason to fear injury to the person or property and carried said weapon to protect himself or property he may in his discretion suspend sentence.

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1934 S.C. Acts 1288, An Act regulating the use and possession of Machine Guns: §§ 1 to 6.

§ 1. “Machine gun” defined. – Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina: For the purposes of this Act the word “machine gun” applies to and includes all firearms commonly known as machine rifles, machine guns and sub-machine guns of any caliber whatsoever, capable of automatically discharging more than eight cartridges successively without reloading, in which the ammunition is fed to such gun from or by means of clips, disks, belts or other separable mechanical device. § 2. Transportation of Machine Gun. – It shall be unlawful for any person or persons in any manner to transport from one place to another in this State, or from any railroad company, or express company, or other common carrier, or any officer, agent or employee of any of them, or any other person acting in their behalf knowingly to ship or to transport form one place to another in this State in any manner or by any means whatsoever, except as hereinafter provided, any firearm as described hereinabove or commonly known as a machine gun. § 3. Storing, Keeping, and/or Possessing Machine Gun. – It shall be unlawful for any person to store, keep, possess, or have in possession, or permit another to store, keep, possess, or have in possession, except as hereinafter provided, any firearem of the type defined above or commonly known as a machine gun. § 4. Selling, Renting or Giving away Machine Gun. – It shall be unlawful for any person to sell, rent, or give away, or be interested directly or indirectly, in the sale, renting or giving away, or otherwise disposing of any firearm of the type above described or commonly known as a machine gun. § 5. Exceptions – Register Machine Guns. – The provisions of this Act shall not apply to the army, navy or marine corps of the United States, the National Guard, and organizations authorized by law to purchase or received machine guns from the United States, or from this State, and the members of such corps. National Guard and organizations while on duty or at drill, may possess, carry and transport machine guns, and, Provided, further, That any peace officer of the State, counties or political sub-division thereof. State Constable, member of the Highway patrol, railway policemen, warden, superintendents, headkeeper or deputy of any State prison, penitentiary, workhouse, county jail, city jail, or other institution for detention of persons convicted or accused of crime, or held as witnesses in criminal cases, or persons on duty in the postal service of the United States, or common carrier while transporting direct to any police department, military or naval organization, or persons authorized by law to possess or use a machine gun, may possess machine guns when required in the performance of their duties, nor shall the provisions of this Act be construed to apply to machine guns kept for display as relics and which are rendered harmless and not useable. Within thirty days after the passage of this Act every person permiteed by this Act to possess a machine gun or immediately after any person is elected to or appointed to any office or position which entitles such person to possess a machine gun, shall file on the office of the Secretary of State on a blank to be supplied by the Secretary of State on application therefor, an application to be properly sworn to, which shall be approved by the Sheriff of the county in which the applicant resides or has its principal place of business, which shall include the applicants name, residence and business address, description including sex, race, age weight, height, color of eyes, color of hair, whether or not ever charged or convicted of any crime, municipal, State or otherwise, and where, if so charged, and when same was disposed of. The applicant shall also give the description including the serial number and make the machine gun which he possesses or desires to possess. Thereupon the Secretary of State shall file such application in his office, registering such applicant togther with the information required in the application in a book or index to be kept for that purpose, and assign to him a number, an dissue to him a card which shall bear the signature of the applicant, and which he shall keep with him while he has such machine gun in his possession. Such registeration shall be made on the date application is received and filed iwth the Secretary of State, and shall expire on December 31, of the year in which said license is issued. § 6. Penalty – Any person violating any of the provisions of this Act shall be guilty of a felony, and, on conviction thereof shall be sentenced to pay a fine not exceeding One Thousand Dollars, and undergo imprisonment by separate or solitary confinement at labor not exceeding twenty (20) years.




1931 S.C. Acts 78, An Act Declaring it unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to place a loaded trap gun, spring gun, or any like devise in any building, or in any place, and providing punishment for the violation thereof: § 1.

§ 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina: That it shall be unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to construct, set, or place a loaded trap gun, spring gun, or any like device in any manner in any building, or in any place within this State, and any violation to the provisions of this Act shall be deemed a misdemeanor and punished by fine of not less than One Hundred ($100.00) Dollars and not more than Five Hundred ($500.00) Dollars, or by imprisonment of not less than thirty (30) days nor more than one (1) year, or by both fine and imprisonment, in the discretion of the Court.




1923 S.C. Acts 19-20, License Tax on Ammunition — Candy — Admissions — Regulations to have force of law.

That every person, firm or corporation doing business within the State of South Carolina and engaging in the business of selling at retail or in any individual instance selling to the final consumer, such articles as are named in this section, for the privilege of carrying on such business, shall be subject to the payment of a license tax which shall be measured by and graduated in accordance with the volume of sales of such person, firm or corporation as follows: (a) There shall be levied, assessed, collected and paid upon all ammunition, including shells for shotguns and cartridges for rifles, pistols, revolvers, automatic pistols, rifles and machine guns, and upon such shells and cartridges partially prepared for use but lacking powder or shot or other necessary constituent, and upon blank shells and cartridges (but not upon powder or shot or caps not prepared and not in form to use in modern firearms), when sold at retail or to the ultimate consumer, the following: Upon all shotgun or other shells, two ($2.00) dollars per thousand rounds; Upon all cartridges, twenty-five (25) caliber or greater, two ($2.00) dollars per thousand rounds. (b) The license taxes imposed upon ammunition shall be paid by stamps to be affixed and cancelled by the retailer or other final seller, and said stamps shall be affixed to the smallest container in which or from which articles are sold, as soon as the original packages are opened or broken, or if received in no other form than that in which sold, as soon as the containers are placed in the place of business of the retailer; in the case of articles inteneded for sale in the packages in which received from outside the State of South Carolina without opening or alteration of any sort, each package must be immediately marked with the date of receipt and the place from which received and no stamps need be affixed so long as such package remains unopened and unaltered.




1923 S.C. Acts 221

If any person shall knowingly sell, offer for sale, give, or in any way dispose of to a minor any pistol or pistol cartridge, brass knucks, bowie knife, dirk, loaded cane or sling shot, he shall be guilty of a misdemeanor. Any person being the parent or guardian, of or attending in loco parentis to any child under the age of twelve years who shall knowingly permit such child to have the possession or custody of, or use in any manner whatever any gun, pistol, or other dangerous firearm, whether such firearm be loaded or unloaded, or any person who shall knowingly furnish such child any firearm, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction, shall be fined not exceeding Fifty Dollars or imprisoned not exceeding thirty days.




1918 S.C. Acts 723, An Act to amend an act entitled An Act . . . Relating to the Open season for game birds and animals. . .

§716. . . Provided further, that it shall be unlawful to at any time use any automatic or pump gun while hunting birds in said county. Any person violating any of the provisions hereof shall upon conviction in any Court of competent jurisdiction, be fined not less than ten dollars nor more than twenty dollars, or be imprisoned at hard labor not less than ten days nor more than twenty days for each and every offense.




1910 S.C. Acts 694, An Act to make it a misdemeanor to point a pistol or gun at any other person: § 1.

§ 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, That from and after the approval of this Act it shall be unlawful for any person to present or point at any other person any loaded or unloaded firearm, and any one, on conviction therefor, shall be punished by fine or imprisonment, in the discretion of the court; provided that nothing contained herein shall be construed to abridge the right of self-defense or to apply to theatricals or like performances.




1903 S.C. Acts 124, An Act to Protect Fish by the Regulation of the Sale of Dynamite and Other Similar Explosives: § 1.

§ 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, That no person shall sell, deliver or dispose of dynamite or similar powerful explosives, except ordinary gunpowder, unless such person knows the purchaser or the party to receive the same and is satisfied that the explosive is not to be used for killing fish, and then only upon a written application from party desiring to purchase, stating the purpose for which he desires to use the said explosives; and a person selling, delivering or disposing of such explosives, shall keep a book in which shall be recorded the name of the purchaser or party to whom the explosive is delivered, the quantity so sold or delivered, and the date of such sale or delivery.




1900 S.C. Acts 449, An Act to amend an act entitled “An Act to Prevent Drunkenness and Shooting upon the Highway”: § 1.

§ 1. . . That any person who shall, without just cause or excuse, or while under the influence, or feigning to be under the influence of intoxicating liquors, engage in any boisterous conduct, or who shall, without just cause or excuse, discharge any gun, pistol or other firearm while upon or within fifty yards of any public road or highway, except upon his own premises, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and, upon conviction thereof, shall pay a fine of not more than one hundred dollars, or beimprisoned for not more than thirty days.




1899 S.C. Acts 97, An Act To Prevent Drunkeness And Shooting Upon The Highway, No. 67, § 1

§ 1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina, That any person who shall engage in any boisterous conduct, under the influence of intoxicating liquors, or while feigning to be under the influence of such liquors, or without just cause or excuse, shall discharge any gun, pistol or other firearms while upon or within fifty yards of any public road, except upon his own premises, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof shall pay a fine of not more than one hundred dollars or be imprisoned for not more than thirty days.




1893 S.C. Acts 426, An Act To Amend An Act Entitled “An Act To Provide For A License For The Sale Of Pistols Or Pistol Cartridges Within The Limits Of This State”, § 2

. . . That the County Commissioners of the Several Counties of the State be, and they are herby, authorized to issue licenses in their respective Counties for the sale of pistols and pistol cartridges upon the payment to County Treasurer by the person or corporation so applying for said licenses of the sum of twenty-five dollars annually.




John E. Breazeale, The Revised Statutes of South Carolina, Containing the Code of Civil Procedure, and the Criminal Statutes. Also The Constitutions of the United States and of the State, and the Rules of the Supreme and of the Circuit Courts of the State Page 431, Image 529 (Vol. 2, 1894) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

Chapter XXVIII Violations of the License Laws by Insurance and Other Companies, Emigrant Agents, owners or shows, etc., Persons Selling Pistols, etc. §490. No person or corporation within the limits of this State shall sell or offer for sale any pistol, rifle, cartridge or pistol cartridge less than .45 caliber, or metal knuckles, without first obtaining a license from the county in which such person or corporation is doing business so to do. The County Board of Commissioners of the several Counties of this State are authorized to issue licenses in their respective Counties for the sale of pistols and pistol and rifle cartridges of less than .45 caliber, and metal knuckles, upon the payment to the County Treasurer by the person or corporation so applying for said license of the sum of twenty-five dollars annually; and any person who shall sell or offer for sale any pistol, or pistol or rifle cartridge of less than .45 caliber, or metal knuckles, without having obtained the license provided in this Section shall be deemed guilty of a misdemeanor, and on conviction shall be punished by a fine not exceeding five hundred dollars, or by imprisonment not exceeding one year, or both, at the discretion of the court.




1880 S.C. Acts 448, An Act To Provide A Punishment For Carrying Any Deadly Weapon Concealed About The Person, §5

That if any person be convicted of assault, assault and battery, or assault and battery with intent to kill, or of manslaughter, and it shall appear upon the trial that the assault, assault and battery, assault, assault and battery with intent to kill, or manslaughter, shall have been committed with a deadly weapons of the character specified in Section one (1) of this Act, carried concealed upon the person of the defendant so convicted, the presiding Judge shall, in addition to the punishment provided by law for such assault, assault and battery, assault, or assault and battery with intent to kill, or manslaughter, inflict further punishment upon the person so convicted of confinement in the penitentiary for not less than three months nor more than twelve months, with or without hard labor, or fined in a sum not less than two hundred dollars, or both fined and imprisoned, at the discretion of the said Judge.




1880 S.C. Acts 448, § 1, as codified in S.C. Rev. Stat. (1894). § 129 (2472.)

§ 1. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of South Carolina, not met and sitting in General Assembly, and by the authority of the same, That any person carrying a pistol , dirk, dagger, slung shot, metal knuckles, razor, or other deadly weapon usually used for the infliction of personal injury, concealed about his person shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and upon conviction thereof, before a Court of competent jurisdiction shall forfeit to the County the weapon so carried concealed and be fined in a sum not more than two hundred dollars, or imprisoned for not more than twelve months, or both, in the discretion of the Court. § 2. It shall be the duty of every Trial Justice, Sheriff, Constable, or other peace officer, to cause all persons violating this Act to be prosecuted therefor whenever they shall discover a violation hereof.




1878 S.C. Acts 724, An Act to Amend An Act To Prevent Fishing With Nets In The Fresh Water Streams Of This State At Certain Seasons Of The Year

It shall not be lawful for any person on the Counties of Horry, Marion, Darlington, Clarendon, Chesterfield, Georgetown, Marlboro, and Williamsburg to fish with nets or gigs, or set traps, or shoot fish with any kind of gun, in any of the fresh water rivers, creeks, lakes or other streams in said Counties, between the first day of May and the first day of September in any year hereafter.




Edmund William McGregor Mackey, The Revised Statutes of the State of South Carolina, Prepared by Commissioners under an Act of the General Assembly, Approved March 9, 1869, to Which is Prefixed the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of South Carolina Page 710, Image 788 (1873) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

Of Offenses Against the Person, § 7. Whoever shall challenge another to fight at sword, pistol, rapier, or any other dangerous weapon, or who shall accept any such challenge, shall, for every offense, on conviction thereof, be deprived of the right of suffrage, and be disabled forever from holding any office of profit or honor under this State, and shall be imprisoned in the penitentiary for a term not exceeding two years, at the discretion of the Court.




1870 S.C. Laws 403, no. 288, § 4.

They may cause to be arrested all affrayers, rioters, disturbers and breakers of the peace, and all who go armed offensively, to the the terror of the people, and such as utter menaces or threatening speeches, or otherwise dangerous and disorderly persons.




Edmund William McGregor Mackey, The Revised Statutes of the State of South Carolina, Prepared by Commissioners under an Act of the General Assembly, Approved March 9, 1869, to Which is Prefixed the Constitution of the United States and the Constitution of South Carolina Page 404, Image 482 (1873) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

Hunting, General Provisions, § 21. That it shall not be lawful for any non-resident of this State to use a gun, set a trap or decoy, or to employ any other device for killing or taking deer, turkeys, ducks or other game, not to set a trap, seine, or net, or draw or use the same, or any other contrivance for taking or killing fish, within the territorial limits of this State.




Ordinances, of the Town of Columbia, (S. C.) Passed Since the Incorporation of Said Town: To Which are Prefixed, the Acts of the General Assembly, for Incorporating the Said Town, and Others in Relation Thereto Page 75-76, Image 75-76 (1823) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

Ordinances of the Town of Columbia, An Ordinance to Prohibit the Keeping of more gun powder in the town of Columbia than a certain quantity, and for other purposes therein mentioned (1820). Be it ordained by the Intendant and Wardens of the town of Columbia, and it is hereby ordained by the authority of the same, That from and after the first day of July next, no merchant, retailer, dealer in powder, or any person or persons whatever, within the said town, shall retain, keep or have in his, her or their possession, at any time, a greater quantity of gunpowder than fifty pounds weight. And be it further ordained by the authority aforesaid, That it shall be the duty , and lawful for the fire-masters, or any two of them, as also for the town marshal, on information given to them, or the same coming to their knowledge, by any means whatever, of a greater quantity of gunpowder than fifty pounds weight, being in the possession of, or within the enclosure of any person or persons whatsoever, to enter into the enclosures of any person or persons whatsoever, to enter into the enclosures house or houses, out-houses, stables, and yards f every owner or tenant of the same within the town of Columbia, and enquire, search and examine if any greater quantity than fifty pounds weight are lodged or contained in any such place within the said town; and, if upon such information, examination or search, the said fire-masters or town marshal shall have just grounds to suspect, or be satisfied that a greater quantity of gunpowder than is allowed by this ordinance, is lodged or contained in any such place or places aforesaid, they are hereby required, immediately thereupon, to give information thereof to the intendant and wardens of the said town. And be it further ordained by the authority aforesaid, That all and every owner or tenant of such house or houses, places or enclosures, after being duly summoned to appear before the intendant and wardens, and upon a conviction of each and every such offence, as is prohibited by this ordinance, shall be subject to a fine not exceeding twenty dollars. Provided nevertheless, That if any person or persons shall erect or build such a building or buildings within the limits of the said town, in which gunpowder may be lodged or deposited, without endangering the said town, or the property of any of the citizens thereof, and to be approved by the said fire-masters and the intendant and wardens, that then such building or buildings shall exempt the proprietors or owners who have gun-powder deposited therein, form the fines by this ordinance imposed, except as before excepted.




Ordinances, of the Town of Columbia, (S. C.) Passed Since the Incorporation of Said Town: To Which are Prefixed, the Acts of the General Assembly, for Incorporating the Said Town, and Others in Relation Thereto Page 61-61, Image 61-62 (1823) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

[Ordinances of the Town of Columbia, An Ordinance for Prohibiting the Firing of Guns in the Town of Columbia (1817). Whereas the practice of firing small arms within the town of Columbia is extremely dangerous to the lives; as well as the property of the inhabitants thereof, and ought to be strictly prohibited: Be it ordained by the Intendent and Municipal Wardens of the towns aforesaid, in council assembled, and it is hereby ordained by the authority of the same, That hereafter it shall not be lawful for any person to fire or discharge any gun, pistol or other small arms within the limits bounded by Henderson, Blossom, Lincoln and Upper streets; and if any person shall wantonly, knowingly, and willfully fire or discharge any gun, pistol, or other small arms within the said limits, such person shall forfeit and pay to the use of the town aforesaid, a sum not exceeding five dollars, for each and every such offence, to be sued for and recovered according to law. And whereas, offences of this kind may be committed by minors or other disorderly persons, who have no ostensible property whereof the said penalty can be levied. Be it therefore ordained by the authority aforesaid, That any gun, pistol or other small arms, fired or discharged by any such person in breach of this ordinance, shall be liable for the payment of the penalty or penalties aforesaid; and it shall be lawful for the intendant, either of the Wardens or constables, who shall see such person offending against this ordinance, to seize and take into possession the gun or pistol, or other small arms so fired or discharged, and despite the same with the Intendant or either of the Wardens; and if the person charged with the said offense, and convicted thereof, shall not within ten days after conviction pay the penalty incurred and the costs of prosecution, the same shall be sold to discharge the said penalty and costs: Provided nevertheless, That nothing in this ordinance contained shall extend to prohibit or restrain the usual exercises or duties of the military on muster or parade days, or in performance of patrol or other duties enjoined by law, or to prohibit or restrain any of the inhabitants of said town from shooting any mad dog, or any other dangerous animal found within the same, or from firing guns on the fourth of July, Christmas and New-Years days, or on any other day of general rejoicing of said town.]




Alexander Edwards, Ordinances of the City Council of Charleston, in the State of South-Carolina, Passed since the Incorporation of the City, Collected and Revised Pursuant to a Resolution of the Council Page 289, Image 299 (1802) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

[Ordinances of the City of Charleston, An Ordinance for Appointing Commissioners of the Streets, Defining their Powers, and for other Purposes therein Mentioned, § 8. And be it further ordained by the authority aforesaid, That no person or persons, shall fire any squibs, crackers, or other fireworks, except at times of public rejoicing, and at such places as the intendant for the time being may permit, by license under his hand; nor burn any chips, shavings, or other combustible matters, in any of the streets, lanes, wharves, alleys, or open or enclosed lots of the city, nor fire any gun, pistol, or fire arms, within the limits of the city, except on occasion of some military parade, and then by the order of some officer having the command, under the penalty of ten dollars, for every such offense; nor shall any person or persons, raise or fly any paper or other kite, within the said city, under the said penalty of ten dollars.]




Alexander Edwards, Ordinances of the City Council of Charleston, in the State of South-Carolina, Passed since the Incorporation of the City, Collected and Revised Pursuant to a Resolution of the Council Page 153, Image 156 (1802) available at The Making of Modern Law: Primary Sources.

Ordinances of Charleston, An Ordinance to Revise and Amend an Ordinance Respecting Fires in the City of Charleston, and for other Purposes Therein Mentioned, § 5. And be it further Ordained by the Authority Aforesaid, That it shall and may be lawful for the fire-masters to enter into the houses, out-houses, stables and yards of every owner or tenant of the same in Charleston, wherever they shall see occasion and enquire, search, and examine if any quantities of gun-powder ,hay, straw, fodder, pitch, tar, rosin, turpentine, hemp, oil, tallow, or other combustible matter, are lodged in any such place within the said city, which may be in danger of taking fire; and if the said fire-masters shall find there is apparent danger that fire may be communicated by such combustibles, they shall admonish the owner or the tenant of such house or houses, to remove the same, and in case such person or persons shall refuse or neglect to remove the same, within twelve hours from such notice being given, the said fire masters are hereby empowered, and directed, to cause the same to be removed and lodged in some more secure place, at the charge of such owner or tenant, and shall issue a warrant, under the hands and seals of any three, or more of them, and levy the expenses of the same and fine of thirty dollars for every such offense.




1791 S.C. Acts 16, An Act To Amend And More Effectually Put In Force For The Time Therein Limited, The Act Entitled An Act For The Regulation Of The Militia Of This State . . .

. . . And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That every free man of this state, liable to bear arms in any of the regiments, battalions or companies of foot in this state and who shall appear at any such regiment or battalion muster or at any muster or review ordered by his Excellency the governor, or at any company muster ordered in pursuance of this act, or by virtue of the said act of the twenty-sixth day of March 1784, not provided with a good musket and bayonet, and cartouch box capable of containing at least twelve rounds of cartridges or other sufficient gun and a good and sufficient small sword, broad sword, cutlass or hatchet, and a powder horn or flask capable of holding at least 12 rounds of powder, and a good shot bag or pouch, capable of holding twelve balls of a proper size for his gun, and with three spare flints, shall forfeit and pay for each and every such default, the sum of two dollars, or the sum of half a dollar for each article of arms or accoutrements herein before directed, to be affected and levied on such defaulter, in the manner in and by the said act directed and appointed.




1731-43 S.C. Acts 168, § 23

It shall not be lawful for any slave, unless in the presence of some white person, to carry or make use of firearms or any offensive weapon whatsoever, unless such negro or slave shall have a ticket or license in writing from his master, mistress or overseer, to hunt and kill game, cattle, or mischievous birds or beasts of prey, and that such license be renewed once every month, or unless there be some white person of the age of 16 or upwards, in the company of such slave when he is hunting or shooting; or that such slave be actually carrying his masters arms to or from his masters plantation, by a special ticket, for that purpose, or unless such slave be found in the day time actually keeping off rice birds, or other birds within the plantation to which such slave belongs, lodging the same gun at night within the dwelling house of his master, mistress or white overseer. And provided also that no negro or other slave shall have liberty to carry any guns, cutlass, pistol or other weapon abroad form at any time between Saturday evening after sunset and Monday morning before sunrise notwithstanding a license or ticket for so doing. And in case any person shall find any slave using or carrying fire-arms, or other offensive weapons, contrary to the true intention of this act; every such person may lawfully seize and take away such fire-arms or offensive weapons; but before the property of such goods shall be vested in the person who shall seize the same, such person shall, within 48 hours next after such seizure, go before the next justice of the peace, and shall make oath of the manner of the taking; and if such justice of the peace after such oath shall be made, or upon any other examination, he shall be satisfied, that the said fire-arms or other offensive weapons, shall have been seized according to the directions and agreeable to the true intent and meaning of this act, the said justice shall, by certificate under his hand and seal, declare them forfeited, and that the property is lawfully vested in the person who seized the same. Provided that no such certificate shall be granted by any justice of the peace until the owner or owners of such fire-arms or other offenisve weapons so to be seized as aforesaid, or the overseer or overseers who shall or may have the charge of such slave or slaves from, whom such fire-arms or other offensive weapons shall be taken or seized shall be duly summoned, to show cause (if any such they have) why the same should not be condemned as forfeited; or until 48 hours after the service of such summons and oath made of the service thereof before the said justice.