Evarts Act Day: The Birth of the U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeals
Ross E. Davies, Evarts Act Day, Journal of Law: A Periodical Laboratory of Legal Scholarship, Vol. 6, No. 2, 2016, pp. 251-273
23 Pages Posted: 9 Jan 2017 Last revised: 10 Jan 2017
Date Written: January 5, 2017
The Evarts Act (26 Stat. 826) altered the federal courts more extensively than any statute since the Judiciary Act of 1789 (1 Stat. 73), which set up the Supreme Court and the subordinate federal courts. The new law created an intermediate federal appellate court system (the circuit courts of appeals profiled here) and rejiggered the relationships and jurisdictions of the various parts of the new system. This article lays out the details of the new courts' first day on the job, and flags a few intriguing aspects of their early work.
Keywords: Supreme Court, Horace Gray, Samuel Blatchford, Joseph Bradley, Melville Fuller, L.Q.C. Lamar, Henry Billings Brown, John Marshall Harlan, David Brewer, Stephen J. Field, Choate, Holy Trinity, Reporter
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