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Judgments and Decrees of District Courts in Cases transferred

from Territorial Courts.

Sec. 704. The judgments or decrees of any District Court, in cases transferred to it from the Superior Court of any territory, upon the admission of such territory as a state, under sections five hundred and sixty-seven and five hundred and sixty-eight, may be reviewed and reversed or affirmed, upon writs of error sued out of or appeals taken to the Supreme Court, in the same manner as if such judgments or decrees had been rendered in said Superior Court of such territory. And the mandates and all writs necessary to the exercise of the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court in such cases shall be directed to such District Court, which shall cause the same to be duly executed and obeyed. (See ss. 567, 568.]

22 Feb., 1847, c. 17, s. 1, v. 9, p. 128. 22 Feb., 1848, c. 12, s. 2, v. 9, p.




1. (Dec., 1869.) The act of Feb. 22, 1818, which enacts that the provisions of the act of Feb. 22, 1817, transferring to the District Courts of the United States cases of federal character and jurisdiction begun in the territorial courts of certain territories of the United States, and then admitted to the Union (none of which, on their admission as states, however, as it happened, were attached to any judicial circuits of the United States), shall apply to all cases which may be pending in the Supreme or other Superior Courts of any territory of the United States which may be admitted as a state, at the time of its admission, is to be construed so as to transfer the cases into District Courts of the United States, if, on admission, the state did not form a part of a judicial circuit; but, if attached to such a circuit, then into the Circuit Court. Express Co. v. Kountze Bros., 8 Wall. 342.

Judgments and Decrees of Supreme Court of District of


Sec. 705. The final judgment or decree of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia, in any case where the matter in dispute, exclusive of costs, exceeds the value of one thousand dollars,' may be re-examined and reversed or atlirmed in the Supreme Court of the United States, upon writ of error or appeal, in the same manner and under the same regulations as are provided in cases of writs of error on judgments, or appeals from decrees rendered in a Circuit Court.

27 Feb., 1801, c. 15, s. 8, v. 2, p. 106.
2 April, 1816, c. 39, s. 1, v. 3, p. 261.
3 March, 1863, c. 91, s. 11, v. 12, p. 764.



1. (Feb., 1805.) No appeal or writ of error lies in a criminal case from the judgment of the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia. United States v. Nlore, 3 Cranch, 159.

2. (Feb., 1808.) An appeal or writ of error lies from the judgments of the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia to this court, in cases where the Bank of Alexandria is plaintiff, and the judgments below are in its favor, notwithstanding the clause in its charter to the contrary. Young v. Bank of Alexandria, 4 Cranch, 383.

3. (Feb., 1810.) An appeal lies to the Supreme Court from an order of the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia, quashing an inquisition in the nature of a writ ad quod damnum. Custiss v. Turnpike Co., 6 Cranch, 233.

. 4. (Feb., 1812.) Upon a writ of error to the Circuit Court for the District of Columbia this court has no jurisdiction, if the sum awarded be less than $100, although a greater sum may have been originally claimed. Wise v. Col. Turnpike Co., 7 Cranch, 276.

Now $2,500. 20 Stat. at Large, 321. (Act of Feb. 25, 1879.)

5. (Feb., 1814.) An appeal lies to this court from the sentence of the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia, afiirming the sentence of the Orphans'.Court of Alexandria County, which dismissed a petition to revoke the probate of a will.

Carter v. Cutting, 8 Cranch, 251. 6. (Feb., 1824.) In replevin, if it be of goods distrained for rent, the amount for which avowry is made is the value of the matter in controversy; and if the writ be issued to try the title to property, it is in the nature of detinue, and the value of the article replevied is the value of the matter in controversy, so as to give jurisdiction to this court upon a writ of error. Peyton v. Robertson, 9 Wheat. 527.

7. (Jan., 1828.) The Supreme Court of the United States has jurisdiction of appeals from the Orphans' Court through the Circuit Court for the county of Washington, by virtue of the act of Congress of Feb. 13, 1801; and by the act of Congress subsequently passed, the matter in dispute, exclusive of costs, must exceed the value of $1,000 in order to entitle the party to an appeal. Nicholls v. Hodges, 1 Pet. 562.

8. (Jan., 1829.) The value of the interest a guardian has in the minor's estate is not the value of the estate, but that of the office of a guardian. This is of no value, except so far as it affords a compensation for labors and services; and in a controversy between persons claiming adversely as guardians, having no distinct interest of their own, it cannot be considered as amounting to a sufficient sum to authorize an appeal to this court from a Circuit Court of the District of Columbia. Ritchie v. Mauro, 2 Pet. 213.

9. (Jan., 1829.) The court refused to reverse the decree of the Circuit Court of the county of Washington, although an error had been committed in proceeding under the mandate from this court, as no benefit would result to the appel lant from a reversal. Campbell v. Pratt, 2 Pet. 354.

10. (Jan., 1832.) The plaintiff claimed in his declaration the sum of $1,241, and laid his damages at $1,000; a general

verdict having been given against him, the matter in dispute is the sum he claims ad quod damnum. The court cannot judicially take notice that by computation it may possibly be made out as matter of inference from the plaintiff's declaration, that the claim may be less than $1,000; much less can it take such notice in a case where the plaintiff might be allowed interest by a jury, so as to swell the claim beyond $1,000. (Error to Circuit Court, D. C.) Scott v. Lunt, 6 Pet. 319.

11. (Jan., 1833.) R., being indebted to the Farmers' Bank of Alexandria on certain promissory notes exceeding in amount $1,000, conveyed to H. a lot of ground in Alexandria, exceeding $1,000 in value, devised to her by her husband, to secure the payment of the said notes by sale of the lot. R. claimed an estate in fee in the property conveyed to the trustee. The sum due the bank was reduced by payments to less than $1,000, and R. being deceased, a bill was filed by the bank to compel the trustee to sell the property conveyed to him by R. for the payment of the balance of the debt. The Circuit Court decreed that R. held no other interest in the property than a life estate, and dismissed the bill. The complainants appealed.

On a motion to dismiss the appeal for want of jurisdiction, the debt remaining due to the bank being less than $1,000, the amount required to give jurisdiction in appeals and writs of error from the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia, it was held that the real matter in controversy was the debt claimed in the bill; and though the title of the lot might be inquired into incidentally, it does not constitute the object of the suit. The appeal was dismissed. Bank of Alexandria v. Hooff, 7 Pet. 168.

12. (Jan., 1833.) Motion to dismiss an appeal. A decree was pronounced by the District Court of the United States for the District of Alexandria, in December, 1829, from which the defendants appealed, but did not bring up the record. At January term, 1832, the appellees, in pursuance of the rule

of court, brought up the record and filed it; and on motion of their counsel the appeal was dismissed. On the 9th of March, 1832, a citation was signed by the Chief Justice of the court for the District of Columbia, citing the plaintiff in the original action to appear before the Supreme Court then in session, and show cause why the decree of the Circuit Court should not be corrected. A copy of the record was returned with the citation, "executed" and filed with the clerk. BY THE COURT: The record is brought up irregularly, and the cause must be dismissed. Yeaton v. Lenor, 7 Pet. 220.

13. The act of March, 1803, which gives the appeal from decrees in chancery, subjects it to the rules and regulations which govern writs of error. Under this act it has been always held that an appeal may be prayed in court when the decree is pronounced. But if the appeal be prayed after the court has risen, the party must proceed in the same manner as had been previously directed in writs of error. 1b.

14. (Jan., 1834.) The plaintiffs in error filed a petition for freedom in the Circuit Court of the United States for the county of Washington. . . . On the part of the defendant in error a preliminary objection was made to the jurisdiction of this court, growing out of the act of Congress of the 20 of April, 1816, which declares that no cause shall be removed from the Circuit Court for the District of Columbia to the Supreme Court, by appeal or writ of error, unless the matter in dispute shall be of the value of $1,000 or upwards.

BY THE COURT: The matter in dispute in this case is the freedom of the petitioners. The judgment of the court below is against their claims to freedom ; and the matter in dispute is, therefore, to the plaintiffs in error, the value of their freedom, and this is not susceptible of a pecuniary valuation. Had the judgment been in favor of the petitioners, and the writ of error brought by the party claiming to be the owner, the value of the slaves as property would have been the matter in dispute, and affidavits might be admitted to ascer

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