1807.020: A Short Review of the Late Proceedings at New-Orleans.

Published: 1807

Full Title: A short review of the late proceedings at New-Orleans; and some remarks upon the bill, for suspending the privilege of the writ of habeas corpus, which passed the Senate of the United States, during the last session of Congress; in two letters, to the printer. By Agrestis.

Author: Alston, Joseph (1778-1816), as Agretis.

Place Issued: Richmond

Issuing Press: Samuel Brooks

Description: 36 pgs.


Commentary supporting John Marshall's decision in cases of Ex Parte Bollman and Ex Parte Swartwout (8 U.S. 75; February Term 1807). These were the initial legal actions antedating the treason trial of Aaron Burr; Bollman and Swartwout had carried coded letters between Burr and Gen. James Wilkinson, the U.S. military commander in New Orleans soliciting his participation in Burr's conspiracy; when Wilkinson turned on Burr, he arrested the two, without warrant, and sent them to Washington under military guard; the men's lawyers filed for writs of habeas corpus with the Supreme Court; the court issued the writs, freeing the men, out of of a lack of probable cause for their arrest, as they were not privy to the code. In response to the filing, the U.S. Senate, then controlled by the Jeffersonians, passed a bill suspending the habeas corpus provisions of the Constitution; that bill failed in the House. Imprint reports: "South-Carolina, printed--Richmond, reprinted, corrected and revised at the Office of the Impartial Observer. June 1807." For the duration of its publication (May 1806 to July 1807), Samuel Brooks was proprietor of the Impartial Observer, though the silversmith-editor employed a series of Richmond job-printers to do so, hence the attribution here.

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