It was governed under a constitution, drafted by Cabet, which vested the legislative authority in a general assembly composed of all the males twenty years of age or over and the administrative authority in a board of six directors, three of whom were elected every six months for a term of one year.
In December 1855 Cabet proposed a revision of the constitution to give him greater authority.
This resulted in rending the colony into two irreconcilable factions, and in October 1856 Cabet with the minority (172) withdrew to St Louis, Mo., where he died on the 8th of November.
Soon after the schism of 1856 those who had rebelled against Cabet began to prepare a permanent home in Adams county, Iowa.
See Albert Shaw, Icaria: A Chapter in the History of Communism (New York, 1884); Jules Prudhommeaux, Icaria et son fondateur Etienne Cabet (Paris, 1907); and H.
Lux, Etienne Cabet and der Ikarische Kommunismus (Stuttgart, 1894).