Us Supreme Court Report Revolutionary War Americana Constitution War Of 1812 For Sale
Mikebooks122 proudly presents a copy of a
RARE, IMPORTANT ORIGINAL, 1806 SECOND EDITION OF VOLUME ONE: “Reports of Cases Ruled and Adjudged in the Courts of Pennsylvania Before and Since the Revolution.”
It was authored by the First Reporter of Decisions for the Supreme Court in the United States, Alexander James Dallas. This early American imprint was completed by P. Byrne, No. 182 Market Street in Philadelphia.
This substantial volume of Reports compiled by antifederalist lawyer Alexander J. Dallasis the first to record cases heard before the U.S. Supreme Court. “This very valuable work” (Sabin) provides “a record which otherwise would not have been available. Dallas thereby began a reporting tradition for the Supreme Court which was to help shape American legal history (Cohen & O’Conner, 22). “We owe much to Dallas for recognizing the need for Supreme Court reports, thereby in theory making the decisions of the new nation’s highest court available to judges, lawyers and citizens. Apart from his Reports, the Court’s rulings could be known only through correspondence, word of mouth and occasional newspaper accounts… because the Court had no requirement [then] of written decisions” (Hall, 215).
Especially key is documentation of Chisholm v. Georgia (II:419-80). “The first great case decided by the Court… [and] the first instance in which a Supreme Court decision has been superseded by constitutional amendment” (Hall, 144), it is generally “recognized as the most important decision made by the Supreme Court before John Marshall became Chief Justice in 1801” (American Journal of Legal History). It was almost immediately superseded by the Eleventh Amendment.
The Eleventh Amendment, which was the first Constitutional amendment after the adoption of the Bill of Rights, was adopted following the Supreme Court's ruling in Chisholm v. Georgia, 2 U.S. 419 (1793). In Chisholm, the Court ruled that federal courts had the authority to hear cases in law and equity brought by private citizens against states and that states did not enjoy sovereign immunity from suits made by citizens of other states in federal court. Thus, the amendment clarified Article III, Section 2 of the Constitution, which gave diversity jurisdiction to the judiciary to hear cases "between a state and citizens of another state."
In addition, this major volume covers influential cases on high treason, piracy, murder, slavery, free speech and rules of evidence, as well as that of Glass v. Sloop Betsy (III:6-16), “one of supreme importance in the early history of the country, for it called for a judicial decision vital to [Washington’s] policy of neutrality” asserted during the Genet controversy (Warren I:105). Central also is that of Hylton v. U.S. (III:199-285), the first to raise “the issue of the Supreme Court’s power of judicial review… [in which] the justices appeared to assume that they had the power to nullify unconstitutional acts of Congress… Not until Chief Justice John Marshall’s celebrated opinion in Marbury v. Madison (1803), did the Supreme Court finally explain its power of judicial review under the Constitution” (Hall, 419).
Still cited today, the Reports chronicle “the Court’s first decisions, from August term 1791 through its final activities in Philadelphia in August term 1800” (ANB). Having published his first volume in June 1790, Dallas issued three additional volumes (1798, 1799, 1807).
In 1801, Dallas was named United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania and served until 1814. When his friend Albert Gallatin was treasury secretary when the War of 1812 began, he helped Gallatin obtain funds to fight Britain. The war nearly bankrupted the Federal Government by the time Dallas replaced Gallatin as treasury secretary. Dallas reorganized the Treasury Department, brought the government budget back into surplus, championed the creation of the Second Bank of the United States, and put the nation back on the specie system.
Condition: Rare book remains in good condition [see images]. Volume is bound in original publisher’s scarce contemporary sheep. Faded gilt spine compartments with red morocco spine label. Dartmouth College Library bookplate on front cover. Stamps of Horace Greeley Eastburn on half and full title pages. Boards and endpapers present but detached. Some very minor toning and occasional foxing. Pages still supple. It measures approx. 9" tall x 6" wide x 1.5" thick. Volume contains 499 pages of text and 26 pages of advertisements. This is quite a find and a very worthy acquisition indeed.
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