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5 1875 "Idiots, Lunatics, Paupers, and Felons'' Article VI of the 1875 Constitution defined voting eligibility. Women were excluded and by implication, they felt, classed with "idiots, lunatics, paupers , and felons." DOCUMENT* ARTICLE VI. SUFFRAGE. SECTION 1. The following classes of persons shall not be allowed to vote in this State, to-wit: First—Persons under twenty-one years of age. Second—Idiots and lunatics. Third—All paupers supported by any county. Fourth—All persons convicted of any felony, subject to such exceptions as the Legislature may make. Fifth—All soldiers, marines and seamen, employed in the service of the army or navy of the United States. SEC. 2. Every male person subject to none of the foregoing disqualifications , who shall have attained the age of twenty-one years, and who shall be a citizen of the United States, and who shall have resided in this State one year next preceding an election, and the last six months within the district or county in which he offers to vote, shall be deemed a qualified elector; and every male person of foreign birth, subject to none of the foregoing disqualifications, who, at any time before an election, shall have declared his intention to become a citizen of the United States, in accordance with the federal naturalization laws, and shall have resided in this State one year next preceding such election, and the last six months in the county in which he offers to vote, shall also be deemed a qualified elector; and all electors shall vote in the election precinct of their residence; provided, that electors living in any unorganized county, may vote at any election precinct in the county, to which such county is attached, for judicial purposes. *From: "Constitution of the State of Texas adopted by the Constitutional Convention Begun and Held at the City of Austin on the Sixth Day of September, 1875" (Galveston), 13-14. (Courtesy of Archives Division, Texas State Library.) 70 DOCUMENTS 71 SEC. 3. All qualified electors of the State, as herein described, who shall have resided for six months immediately preceding an election within the limits of any city or corporate town, shall have the right to vote for mayor and all other elective officers; but in all elections to determine expenditure of money or assumption of debt, only those shall be qualified to vote who pay taxes on property in said city or incorporated town; provided, that no poll tax for the payment of debts thus incurred, shall be levied upon the persons debarred from voting in relation thereto. SEC. 4. In all elections by the people the vote shall be by ballot, and the Legislature shall provide for the numbering of tickets and make such other regulations as may be necessary to detect and punish fraud and preserve the purity of the ballot box; but no law shall ever be enacted requiring a registration of the voters of this State. SEC. 5. Voters shall, in all cases, except treason, felony or breach of the peace, be privileged from arrest during their attendance at elections , and in going to and returning therefrom. ...


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