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Virginia State Bar Association

Acts of Assembly 1889-'90, p. 634, c. 376.
Acts of Assembly 1897-98, p. 327, c. 296.

An Act to Incorporate the Virginia State Bar Association.

(Approved February 28, 1890. Amended February 10, 1898.)

1. Be it enacted by the General Assembly of Virginia, That William J. Robertson, R. G. H. Kean, Thomas Tabb, John W. Riely, James A. Walker, Holmes Conrad, Frank V. Winston, S. Ferguson Beach, John H. Fulton, Charles A. Graves, William R. McKenney, Richard B. Tunstall, James C. Lamb, Charles M. Blackford, William J. Leake, Thomas S. Martin, Alexander Hamilton, James E. Heath, Micajah Woods, George M. Harrison, F. H. McGuire, and such other persons as are now associated with them in the unincorporated society known as the Virginia State Bar Association, or as may be hereafter associated with them under this charter, be and they are hereby incorporated under the corporate name of "The Virginia State Bar Association,” for the purpose of cultivating and advancing the science of jurisprudence, promoting reform in the law and in judicial procedure, facilitating the administration of justice in this state, and upholding and elevating the standard of honor, integrity, and courtesy in the legal profession.

2. *The said corporation shall have power to adopt a seal and to change or break the same, to sue and be sued, and in its corporate name to take, institute, and prosecute any action, suit or other proceeding in the courts of the land, or elsewhere, for the purpose of punishing or disbarring unworthy members of the profession, or persons assuming its functions which may now be taken and prosecuted by any natural person; to acquire by lease or purchase a suitable building or rooms, library, and furniture for the use of the corporation; to borrow money for such purpose and issue bonds therefor, and to secure the same by mortgage or deed of trust, and generally to acquire by purchase, gift, devise, bequest or otherwise, and to hold, transfer, and convey any and all such real or personal property as it may have and as may be necessary to carry out the purposes of this corporation : provided it shall not hold real estate exceeding in value the sum of one hundred thousand dollars.

*Amended Acts 1897–8, p. 327, c. 296.

3. The said corporation shall have power to make and adopt a constitution and by-laws not inconsistent with the laws of this Commonwealth, rules and regulations for the admission, government, suspension, and expulsion of its members, for the collection of fees and dues, the number and election of its officers, and to define their duties, and for the safe-keeping of its property and the management of its affairs, and to alter, modify and change such constitution, by-laws, rules and regulations from time to time.

4. All interest of any member of said corporation in its property shall determine and vest in the corporation upon his ceasing to be a member thereof by death, resignation, expulsion, or otherwise.

5. The several officers of the said Association at the time of the passage of this act shall continue to hold their respective offices, with powers, duties, and emoluments provided by the Constitution and By-Laws of said Association, until their successors shall be elected and installed, and in case of any vacancy in any of said offices such vacancies shall be filled in the manner prescribed by the Constitution and By-Laws already adopted by said Association, or as the same may, in conformity therewith, be altered and amended by this corporation, and the present Constitution and By-Laws of said Association shall be the Constitution and By-Laws of said corporation until the same shall be altered or amended by said corporation. All property, rights, and interests of said Association now held by any or either of the officers thereof or any person or persons for its use and benefit, shall, by virtue of this act, vest in and become the property of the corporation hereby created, subject to the payment of the debts of the said Association.

6. This act shall be in force from its


Constitution and By-Laws


Ninth Annual Meeting of the Association

August 3rd-5th, 1897



Whereas, the following Constitution and By-Laws were adopted by the unincorporated Association known as The Virginia State Bar Association, at Virginia Beach, on the 6th day of July, 1888; and whereas, thereafter, in pursuance of the provisions of the same, a charter of incorporation for the said Association was obtained from the Legislature of Virginia—to-wit, on the 28th of February, 1890, which incorporated into such Association all the members of the unincorporated Association which had met at Virginia Beach on July 6, 1888; and whereas, the said charter conferred upon the corporation the power to make and adopt a Constitution and By-Laws, but such right has not been heretofore formally exercised:

Therefore, Resolved:

1. That we, the Virginia State Bar Association, in convention assembled at the Hot Springs of Virginia, on this, the 3d day of August, 1897, being the same persons or their associates and successors who assembled at Virginia Beach on July 6, 1888, and declared and called themselves the Virginia State Bar Association, do hereby formally adopt and accept a charter granted to William J. Robertson, R. G. H. Kean, and others,


in the name of the Virginia State Bar Association, by the Legislature of the State of Virginia, on the 28th day of February, 1890.

2. That we, as the Virginia State Bar Association, incorporated as aforesaid, do hereby ratify and approve and adopt all the transactions of the Virginia State Bar Association heretofore done and performed, as shown in the minutes and published proceedings of the same heretofore issued.

3. That we, in the exercise of our corporate powers as aforesaid, do hereby adopt the following Constitution and By-Laws for the government of the said Association:




This Association shall be called "THE VIRGINIA STATE BAR ASSOCIATION.”



This Association is formed to cultivate and advance the science of jurisprudence; to promote reform in the law and in judicial procedure; to facilitate the administration of justice in this State; and to uphold and elevate the standard of honor, integrity and courtesy in the legal profession.



1. Active Members. Those members of the Bar who attend the Convention at which this Association was formed, and who

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