The Common Law In Colonial America Volume I The Chesapeake And New England 1607 1660

Author: William E. Nelson
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 9780195327281
Size: 78.89 MB
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William E. Nelson here proposes a new beginning in the study of colonial legal history. Examining all archival legal material for the period 1607-1776 and synthesizing existing scholarship in a four-volume series, The Common Law in Colonial America shows how the legal systems of Britain's thirteen North American colonies--initially established in response to divergent political, economic, and religious initiatives--slowly converged into a common American legal order that differed substantially from English common law.Drawing on groundbreaking and overwhelmingly in-depth research into local court records and statutes, the first volume explores how the law of the Chesapeake colonies--Virginia and Maryland--diverged sharply from the New England colonies--Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, New Haven, Plymouth, and Rhode Island--and traces the roots of these dissimilarities from their initial settlement until approximately 1660. Nelson pointedly examines the disparate motives of the legal systems in the respective colonies as they dealt with religion, price and labor regulations, crimes, public morals, the status of women, and the enforcement of contractual obligations. He reveals how Virginians' zeal for profit led to a harsh legal framework that efficiently squeezed payment out of debtors and labor out of servants; whereas the laws of Massachusetts were primarily concerned with the preservation of local autonomy and the moral values of family-centered farming communities. The law in the other New England colonies, Nelson argues, gravitated towards the Massachusetts model, while Maryland's law, gravitated toward that of Virginia.Comprehensive, authoritative, and extensively researched, The Common Law in Colonial America, Volume 1: The Chesapeake and New England, 1607-1660 is the definitive resource on the beginnings of the common law and its evolution during this vibrant era in America's history. William E. Nelson here proposes a new beginning in the study of colonial legal history.

The Common Law In Colonial America

Author: William E. Nelson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190465050
Size: 19.17 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
View: 883
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William E. Nelson here proposes a new beginning in the study of colonial legal history. Examining all archival legal material for the period 1607-1776 and synthesizing existing scholarship in a four-volume series, The Common Law in Colonial America shows how the legal systems of Britain's thirteen North American colonies--initially established in response to divergent political, economic, and religious initiatives--slowly converged into a common American legal order that differed substantially from English common law. Drawing on groundbreaking and overwhelmingly in-depth research into local court records and statutes, the first volume explores how the law of the Chesapeake colonies--Virginia and Maryland--diverged sharply from the New England colonies--Massachusetts Bay, Connecticut, New Haven, Plymouth, and Rhode Island--and traces the roots of these dissimilarities from their initial settlement until approximately 1660. Nelson pointedly examines the disparate motives of the legal systems in the respective colonies as they dealt with religion, price and labor regulations, crimes, public morals, the status of women, and the enforcement of contractual obligations. He reveals how Virginians' zeal for profit led to a harsh legal framework that efficiently squeezed payment out of debtors and labor out of servants; whereas the laws of Massachusetts were primarily concerned with the preservation of local autonomy and the moral values of family-centered farming communities. The law in the other New England colonies, Nelson argues, gravitated towards the Massachusetts model, while Maryland's law, gravitated toward that of Virginia. Comprehensive, authoritative, and extensively researched, The Common Law in Colonial America, Volume 1: The Chesapeake and New England, 1607-1660 is the definitive resource on the beginnings of the common law and its evolution during this vibrant era in America's history.

The Common Law In Colonial America

Author: William E. Nelson
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190850493
Size: 19.85 MB
Format: PDF, Kindle
View: 4104
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The eminent legal historian William E. Nelson's magisterial four-volume The Common Law in Colonial America traces how the many legal orders of Britain's thirteen North American colonies gradually evolved into one American system. Initially established on divergent political, economic, and religious grounds, the various colonial systems slowly converged until it became possible by the 1770s to imagine that all thirteen participated in a common American legal order, which diverged in its details but differed far more substantially from English common law. This fourth and final volume begins where volume three ended. It focuses on the laws of the thirteen colonies in the mid-eighteenth century and on constitutional events leading up to the American Revolution. Nelson first examines procedural and substantive law and looks at important shifts in the law to show how the mid-eighteenth- century colonial legal system in large part functioned effectively in the interests both of Great Britain and of its thirteen colonies. Nelson then turns to constitutional events leading to the Revolution. Here he shows how lawyers deployed ideological arguments not for their own sake, but in order to protect colonial institutional structures and the socio-economic interests of their clients. As lawyers deployed the arguments, they developed them into a constitutional theory that gave primacy to common-law constitutional rights and local self-government. In the process, the lawyers became leaders of the revolutionary movement and a dominant political force in the new United States.

The Revolutionary Constitution

Author: David J. Bodenhamer
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019991303X
Size: 24.71 MB
Format: PDF, Docs
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The framers of the Constitution chose their words carefully when they wrote of a more perfect union--not absolutely perfect, but with room for improvement. Indeed, we no longer operate under the same Constitution as that ratified in 1788, or even the one completed by the Bill of Rights in 1791--because we are no longer the same nation. In The Revolutionary Constitution, David J. Bodenhamer provides a comprehensive new look at America's basic law, integrating the latest legal scholarship with historical context to highlight how it has evolved over time. The Constitution, he notes, was the product of the first modern revolution, and revolutions are, by definition, moments when the past shifts toward an unfamiliar future, one radically different from what was foreseen only a brief time earlier. In seeking to balance power and liberty, the framers established a structure that would allow future generations to continually readjust the scale. Bodenhamer explores this dynamic through seven major constitutional themes: federalism, balance of powers, property, representation, equality, rights, and security. With each, he takes a historical approach, following their changes over time. For example, the framers wrote multiple protections for property rights into the Constitution in response to actions by state governments after the Revolution. But twentieth-century courts--and Congress--redefined property rights through measures such as zoning and the designation of historical landmarks (diminishing their commercial value) in response to the needs of a modern economy. The framers anticipated just such a future reworking of their own compromises between liberty and power. With up-to-the-minute legal expertise and a broad grasp of the social and political context, this book is a tour de force of Constitutional history and analysis.

A Distinct Judicial Power

Author: Scott Douglas Gerber
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199765871
Size: 32.90 MB
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This title provides a comprehensive critical analysis of the origins of judicial independence in the United States. The book examines the political theory of an independent judiciary and chronicles how each of the original 13 states and their colonial antecedents treated their respective judiciaries.

Give Me Liberty An American History

Author: Eric Foner
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN: 039328316X
Size: 21.44 MB
Format: PDF, ePub
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Give Me Liberty! is the #1 book in the U.S. history survey course because it works in the classroom. A single-author text by a leader in the field, Give Me Liberty! delivers an authoritative, accessible, concise, and integrated American history. Updated with powerful new scholarship on borderlands and the West, the Fifth Edition brings new interactive History Skills Tutorials and Norton InQuizitive for History, the award-winning adaptive quizzing tool.

Americanization Of The Common Law

Author: William Edward Nelson
Publisher: University of Georgia Press
ISBN: 9780820315874
Size: 41.55 MB
Format: PDF
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Americanization of the Common Law remains one of the standard works on the transformation of law in America from the late colonial period to the end of the early republic. In a straightforward manner, William E. Nelson analyzes the profound ideological movement that grew out of the American Revolution and caused substantial structural change in the legal and social order of Massachusetts and, by extension, in the nation at large. The Revolution, Nelson argues, transformed a hierarchical and communitarian legal and social order into an egalitarian and individualistic one. For this edition, Nelson has written a new preface in which he discusses the book's initial reception and the relevant historiographical issues that have arisen since it was first published in 1975.