Search Results

The Dakotas Joint Committee for the Division of Property 1889

Constitution Writing in the American West (NEH)

Cite as: The Dakotas Joint Committee for the Division of Property 1889, Quill Project at Pembroke College (Oxford, 2023).

Jump To
People Icon16 People
Procedures Icon176 Procedures
Documents Icon55 Documents
Decisions Icon215 Decisions

Explore This Model

Full Record View

This page shows the complete source-material for this negotiation

Guided Research Tools

This page gives access to the main visualizations used to explore the work of committees or individuals

Voting Statistics

This view offers a set of tools to examine shifting alliances

Topic Overview

This view shows a summary of the topic keywords associated with events during this negotiation, and allows users to find events associated with each keyword

Activity Summary

This page offers a series of views for exploring the work of those involved in this process of negotiation, focusing on the hierarchical relationship of proposals rather than on the sequence of events

Document Library

This page shows the documents currently agreed to or under consideration by various committees. A good tool for those using Quill in meeting presentations.


The Dakotas Joint Committee for the Division of Property 1889 The Dakotas Joint Committee for the Division of Property 1889

The so-called ‘Omnibus’ Enabling Act of 1889, which permitted the splitting up of the Territory of Dakota into two states, provided for the appointment of a joint commission, composed of delegates from both North and South Dakota, to negotiate an agreement upon the division of all property belonging to the Territory of Dakota, the disposition of public records, and the assumption of territorial debts and liabilities.

Following the passage of the Enabling Act, six delegates from each state, appointed by their respective conventions, met on July 16 1889, in Bismarck. The Commission was presided over by two alternating chairmen: Edgar Whittlesey Camp, from North Dakota, and A. G. Kellam, from South Dakota. Six standing committees were appointed: on records, the public library, miscellaneous property, militia, federal appropriations, and claims and accounts due the territory. Members submitted resolutions to the Commission, which were then referred to the standing committees. Unlike the South Dakota convention, the commission did not begin the process of negotiation with a pre-formed, coherent constitutional text. Nor did it follow the open proposition approach taken by North Dakota, in which standing committees drafted reports recommending the adoption, rejection, amendment or substitution of files submitted by delegates to the Convention. Instead, the approach of the Joint Commission depended heavily on the work of its standing committees. The concurred-in articles, though informed by resolutions submitted to the Convention by individual delegates, originated in the standing committees themselves.

After meeting for 15 days, the delegates submitted three documents to their respective conventions for approval: the articles of agreement, intended to cover those matters referred to the Commission by the Enabling Act, and two separate articles submitted for inclusion in both state constitutions: one regarding territorial debts, and one concerning the division of records, books and archives belonging to the Territory of Dakota.


Documentary Editor

Quill Project

Pembroke College, Oxford.

July 2023.

Sessions Chart

To see the full record of a committee, click on the corresponding committee on the map below

Preparing Visualisation - please wait


3 historical records used for this dataset.


12 committees met in 56 sessions.

Average 18.67 sessions each.


Dates from Tuesday, 16 July 1889 to Wednesday, 31 July 1889.


16 people in 2 voting delegations.

Top 5 most active people are:

Summary of person events:

  • Person join icon 47 join a committee.
  • Person leave icon leave a committee.
  • Person elect icon 39 elections to a position.


176 procedural motions considered.

Summary of procedural events:

  • Procedural motion icon 176 procedural motion proposed.
  • Debate motion icon 61 motions debated.


55 documents considered with 46 amendments presented.

Summary of document events:

  • Create a new document proposal 55 new documents created.
  • Document copied 42 documents passed from another committee.
  • Document amended 46 amendments to a document proposed.
  • Debate a document proposal 83 debates on a proposal.


215 number of decisions made.

Summary of decision made:

  • Vote adopt icon 140 proposals adopted.
  • Vote reject icon 7 proposals rejected.
  • Vote refer icon 37 proposals referred to another committee.
  • Postpone debate icon debate of a proposal postponed.
  • Vote drop icon 10 proposal dropped from discussion without a formal vote.
  • Vote drop icon some other decision on a proposal.

List of proposals by delegation

List of proposals by person

There are no resources for this negotiation yet!

There are no commentaries for this negotiation yet!