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matter of right, any authority to collect assets debt duo from the government to his intestate;
executor or administrator. Its obvious design But it has been suggested that the present was, therefore, to enable foreign executors and
is distinguishable, because the assets administrators to maintain suits, and to sought to be distributed were not collected in prosecute and recover claims in the district, Kentucky, but were received as a debt due not against the government alone, but against from the Government at the Treasury De- any persons whatever, resident within the dispartment at Washington, and so constituted trict, who were indebted to the deceased, and local assets within this district. We cannot to discharge the debtor therefrom, without the yield our assent to the correctness of this grant of any local letters of administration. argument. The debts due from the govern. In effect, it made all debts due from persons ment of the United States have no locality at within the district, not local assets, for the seat of government. The United States, which a personal representative would be in their sovereign capacity, have no particular liable to account in the courts of the district; place of domicile, but possess, in contempla- but general assets, which he had full authority tion of law, an ubiquity throughout the Union; to receive, and for which he was bound to acand the debts du by them are not to be count in the courts of the State from (*8 treated like the debts of a private debtor, which he derived his original letters of adwhich constitute local assets in his own domi- ministration. Indeed, the very silence of the cile. On the contrary, the administrator of a act as to any liability of the personal reprecreditor of the government, duly appointed in sentative to be sued in the courts of the disthe State where he was domiciled at his trict for such assets, 80 received, would seem death, has full authority to receive payment, equivalent to a declaration that he was not to and give a full discharge of the debt due to be subjected to any such liability. It fortifies, bis intestate, in any place where the govern therefore, rather than weakens the conclusion ment may choose to pay it; whether it be at which is derivable from the general principles the seat of government, or at any other place of law upon this subject. The same view of where the public funds are deposited. If any the purport and objects of the act was taken other doctrine were to be recognized, the by this court, at the last term, in the case of consequence would be that before the personal Kane v. Paul, 14 Peters, 33. representative of any, deceased creditor, be Upon the whole, we are of opinion that the longing to any State in the Union, would be Circuit Court was right in dismissing the bill entitled to receive payment of any debt due for the want of jurisdiction, and therefore the by the government, he would be compellable decree is affirmed with costs. to take any letters of administration in this 7") district "for the due administration of This case came on to be heard on the tran. such assets. Such a doctrine has never yet script of the record from the Circuit Court of been sanctioned by any practice of the govern the United States for the District of Columbia, ment; and would be full of public as well as holden in and for the County of Washington, private inconvenience. It has not, in our and was argued by counsel; on consideration judgment, any just foundation in the princi- whereof, it is ordered and decreed by this ples of law. We think that Northup, under court that the decree of the said Circuit Court the letters of administration taken out in in this cause be, and the same is hereby af. Kentucky, was fully authorized to receive the firmed with coste.
D'] 'EDMUND P. GAINES, and Mira Clarke, portons of the estate, through the executors or late Whitney, Complainants,
The bill contains an inventory of the estate RICHARD RELF, Beverly Chew et al., De- of Daniel Clarke, as far as can be made out. fendants.
For these frauds and breaches of trust the bill
claims restitution, etc. Equity powers of Circuit Court in Louisiana
On the 20th February, 1837, about two procedure-jurisdiction of, only appellate as months after subpænas were returned, served, to Circuit Court proceedings.
the two executors, with twenty-five of their
co-defendants, appeared by their respective In the case of Livingston v. Story, which came before this court in 1835, 9 Peters, 655, the court solicitors, and filed a petition; wherein, styling took occasion to examine the various laws of the themselves respondents, eleven of them say, United States establishing and organizing the Dis- French is their “mother tongue," not that they that court bad equity powers : and it so, what do not understand English as well, and pray, should be the mode of proceeding in the exercise of as a precedent condition to their being held to such powers. The various cases which had been plead, answer, or demur to the bill, that a before the court, involving, substantially, the same question in relation to the 'states where there were copy, in their “maternal language," be served no equity State courts, or laws regulating the on each and every one of them, severally, over practice in equity causes, were referred to ; and and above the English copies already served. the uniform decisions of the court have been that Then, "all the aforesaid respondents including, there being no equity State courts, did not prevent the exercise of equity jurisdiction in the courts of of course, the two executors, here appearing the United States; and it was accordingly decided separately by their respective solicitors, crave that the District Court of Louisiana was bound to oyer” of all the instruments and papers of proceed in equity causes according to the princi. ples, rules, and usages which belong to the courts every sort mentioned in the bill; but, “if it be of equity, as contradistinguished from courts of not possible for said complainants to afford common law.
The cases of Livingston v. Story, 9 Peters, 655; these respondents oyer of the original of said 13 Peters, 368; Ex parte Poultney' v. The City of supposed instruments, they then pray that Whitney, 13 Peters, 404, cited; and the principles the laws of the State of Louisiana, may, by La Fayette, 12 Peters, 474; Ex parte Mira Clarke copies of the same, duly certified according to of these cases affirmed.
The Supreme Court has not the power to compel order of this honorable court to said comthe Circuit Court to proceed according to estab- plainants, be filed herein, and served on these lished rules in chancery cases. can do is to prevent proceedings otherwise, byo re respondents, that they may be enabled to versing them, when brought here on appeal.
take proper cognizance thereof." The respondIt is a matter of extreme regret that it appears to ents more especially crave oyer of twentybe the settled determination of the district judge three of these instruments, enumerated and of Louisiana pot to suffer chancery practice to prevall in the Circuit Court of Louisiana in equity specified in a list, referring to the several causes, in total disregard of the repeated decisions clauses of the bill where they are respectively of this court, and the rules of practice established mentioned. by the Supreme Court to be observed in chancery
No answer having been put in by the
twenty-five respondents, *a motion was [*11 a certificate of division from the Circuit made for an attachment, which was refused by
ern District of Louisiana.
a judge of the Circuit Court, to which the proA bill of complaint was originally filed in ceedings were transferred after the establishthe District Court of the United States for the ment of a circuit court in the Eastern District Eastern District of Louisiana, and was after- of Louisiana. wards transferred to the Circuit Court for the At the same time Judge Lawrence, sitting same district.
alone in the Circuit Court, prescribed rules of Subpænas were issued on the 1st of August, practice for that court; among which was a 1836, with a copy of the bill, to each and all general one, that “the mode of proceeding in all the defendants, about fifty in number. Service civil cases, those of admiralty alone excepted, of this process was made by the marshal, on shall be conformable to the Code of Practice twenty-seven of the defendants, and amongst of Louisiana, and to the acts of the Legislature them, on Richard Relf. W. W. Whitney, one of that State, heretofore passed, amendatory of the plaintiffs, having deceased, the proceed thereto." ing was continued in the name of Mira Clarke The complainant applied to the Supreme 10*) Whitney, "his widow. The bill claimed Court, at January Term, 1839, for a man. the estate left by Daniel Clarke, at the time damus to Judge Lawrence, in order to compel of his death; alleging that Mira Clarke Whit him to proceed in the case. 13 Peters, 408. ney was his only child and heir-at-law, and The mandamus so applied for was denied, his devisee.
for reasons appearing in the court's opinion; The bill charged Beverly Chew and Richard but the court, at the same time, expressly deRelf with having fraudulently concealed and clared, though the remedy by mandamus be in. suppressed Daniel Clarke's true and last will, admissible, that it is the duty of the Circuit in which the complainant, his daughter and Court to proceed in this suit according to the heir-at-law, was his only devisee, and was rules prescribed by the Supreme Court at the his general legatee; with having set up an- February Term, 1822, can admit of no doubt; other will, in which they were named exec- and that the proceedings of the district judge, utors, and with having taken and appropriated and the orders made by him in the cause, all the estate, real and personal, of Daniel which are complained of, are not in conform. Clarke. The other defendants are charged ity with those rules of chancery practice, can with confederating with the executors; and admit of as little doubt. 13 Peters, 408. with having obtained, and still holding, large Since then, the present complainants (hav.
ing intermarried) filed a petition for rehear. The courts of equity are of a peculiar form. ing the before stated order, by a bill filed in The Code of Louisiana gives a judge in certhe Circuit Court on the 1st of June, 1839. tain cases a right to proceed according to the
The petition stated that the complainants principles of natural justice; but this gives no were much aggrieved by the interlocutory de chancery powers. cree made in the case by the former district They contended that the case exhibited in judge for the Eastern District of Louisiana; the complainants' bill was one peculiarly of whereby it is ordered that the application of chancery jurisdiction. It is a beneficial biļi, the defendants for oyer of documents, and for and should have the protection of the court. copies of the bill of complaint be allowed; and Cited, Brown's Parliamentary Cases, 650; further, that all further proceedings in the Dickens' Reports, 26; 2 Vesey & Beames, 259. case shall be in conformity with the existing But the chancery jurisdiction of the Circuit practice of the court.
Court nas been fully recognized in the case of On June 1, 1839, in the Circuit Court, before Livingston v. Story, 9 Peters, 655; 12 Peters, the honorable Judges M'Kinley and Lawrence, 474; 13 Peters, 368, 404. The rules of court the counsel for the complainants moved the regulating the practice of the Circuit Court court,
show that the call for papers, as made by the Ist. To set aside and vacate said decretal defendant is not allowed. 10 Rule of Court; order.
3 Dallas, 335, 339. The rules of practice in 2d. To remand the said cause to the rule the Civil Code of Louisiana do not sanction 12*] docket, and order *that the complain. such a call for papers. ants should be permitted to proceed therein Mr. Coxe argued that the case exhibited in according chancery practice. The de- the bill was not one of chancery jurisdiction; fendants appeared by their counsel, and re- nor is a proceeding to vacate a will, in the sisted said application and motion, upon the power of a chancery court. Cases cited, 13 ground that chancery practice should not be Peters, 369; 9 Peters, 657; 12 Wheaton, 169, had in this court, and they relied upon the 175; 1 Williams on Éxecutors, 157; Cowper's treaty of cession of Louisiana to the United Equity Pleading, 268; 2 Story's Equity, 670. States, from France, in 1803; the acts of Mr. Coxe referred to the Louisiana Code, to Congress of 29th September, 1789; 26th May, show that the Probate Court was the proper 1824; the 19th May, 1828; and 20th May, 1830; tribunal to set aside the will. So, too, the and the first rule adopted by this court, of code authorizes proceedings in the established 20th November, 1837.
courts of Louisiana to recover legacies. The judges of the Circuit Court having dif- It was not his intention to controvert the fered in opinion on the hearing of the motion, decisions of the court, but such a case as this it was ordered to be certified to the Supreme bad not yet been decided. Court for its decision upon the following questions:
Mr. Justice Thompson delivered the opinion 1st. Does chancery practice prevail, and of the court: should it be extended to litigants in this This case comes up from the Circuit Court court, and in this cause ?
of the United States for the Eastern District 2d. Should or not the said order of the date of Louisiana, upon a certificate of division of of 9th March, 1837, be annulled and vacated ? opinion upon the following points:
3d. Should or not the cause be placed upon 1. Does chancery practice prevail, and should a rule docket, and the complainants be per- it be extended to litigants in this court, and in mitted to proceed according to chancery prac- this cause ? tice, and the defendants be required to answer 2. Should or not the said order of the 9th of without oyer of the documents prayed for, or March, 1837, be annulled and vacated ? a service of the bill in French, as prayed for? 3. Should or not the cause be placed upon a
And the cause coming on to be heard, by rule docket, and the complainants be per. consent of parties, upon the demurrer, and upon mitted to proceed according to the chancery the adjudication thereof, the judges were op. i *practice; and the defendants be required (*14 posed in their opinions, and the foregoing to answer without oyer of the documents questions were ordered to be certified to the prayed for, or a service of the bill in French, Supreme Court of the United States for its as prayed for? decision and adjudication.
This was a bill filed in the District Court of The case was argued by Mr. Key and Mr. the United States for that district, on the 28th Jones for the plaintiffs, and by Mr. Coxe for of July, 1836, according to the course of practhe defendant.
tice in the courts of the United States, upon The counsel for the plaintiffs contended the equity side of the court; and in the that the single question in the case course of proceeding, the district judge, on whether the Circuit Court of Louisiana has the 9th of March, 1837, entered the following chancery jurisdiction. The argument that the order: "W. W. Whitney et ux. v. Richard case is not one for chancery jurisdiction, does Relf et al. In this case having maturely connot apply. The question whether the case of sidered the prayer for oyer, and for copies of the complainants is, or is not one of chancery bill in French, the court this day delivered its cognizance, is not before the court on the written opinion thereon, whereby it is ordered, certificate of division. No provision of the adjudged and decreed, that the application for Code of Louisiana gives chancery jurisdiction over of documents, and for copies of the bill to the courts of that State. Chancery law as of complaint, in the manner prayed for (in administered in the courts of the United French) be granted: and further, that all 13*] States, is a fixed code of laws; and de- future proceedings in this case shall be in conpends on established rules and decided cases. I formity with the existing practice of this court."
At the June Term of the Circuit Court, in the United States; that those rules are ne the year 1839, a motion was made to set aside obligatory upon the courts of the United and vacate that order, and that the complain. States in Louisiana, as upon all other United ant might be permitted to proceed in the cause, States courts; and that the only modifications according to the course of chancery practice. or additions that can be made in them, by the And upon this motion, the division of opinion circuit or district courts, are such as shall not upon the points above stated arose.
be inconsistent with the rules thus prescribed : These points present the same question that and that where such rules do not apply, the has been repeatedly before this court, and re- practice of the circuit and district courts must ceived its most deliberate consideration and be regulated by the practice of the Court of judgment, viz., whether the proceedings in Chancery in England. That parties to suits in suits in equity, in the courts of the United Louisiana have a right to the benefit of these States, in the District of Louisiana, are re: rules; nor can they be denied by any rule or quired to be according to the of order, without *causing delays, producing (*16 chancery practice, and in conformity to that unnecessary and oppressive expenses; and in which is adopted and established in the other the greater number of cases, an entire denial States. It is not intended to go into an exami- of equitable rights. That this court has said, nation of this question as one that is new and upon more than one occasion, after mature undecided, but barely to refer to the cases deliberation, that the Courts of the United which have been heretofore decided by this states in Louisiana possess equity powers court. In the case of Livingston v. Story, under the Constitution and laws of the United which came before this court in the year States. That if there are any laws in Louisi1835, 9 Peters, 655, the court took occasion to ana directing the mode of proceeding in equity examine the various laws of the United States causes, they are adopted by the Act of the establishing and organizing the District Court | 26th of May, 1824, and will govern the pracin Louisiana, and to decide whether that court tice of the courts of the United States. But, had equity powers, and if so, what should be as has been already said, there are no such the mode of proceeding in the exercise of such laws in Louisiana, and, of course, the act canpowers. The various cases which had been be- not apply. fore the court, involving substantially the And in the case Ex-parte Poultney v. The same question, in relation to the States where City of La Fayette, 12 Peters, 474, this court 15*] *there were no equity State courts, or said, the rules of chancery practice, in Louisilaws regulating the practice in equity causes, ana, mean the rules prescribed by this court for were referred to; and the uniform decisions of the government of the courts of the United this court have been that there being no equity States, under the authority given by the Act State courts did not prevent the exercise of of the 8th of May, 1792. equity jurisdiction in the courts of the United And again, in the year 1839, in the case ExStates. And it was accordingly decided that parte Mira Clarke Whitney, 13 Peters, 404, apthe District Court of Louisiana was bound to plication was made to this court for a manproceed in equity causes according to the damus to compel the district judge to proceed principles, rules, and usages, which belong to in this case according to the course of chancery courts of equity, as contradistinguished from practice, upon a petition to the court repre. courts of common law; that the acts of Con- senting that he had refused so to do, but had gress have distinguished between remedies at entered an order that all further proceedings common law and in equity; and that to effectu. should be conformable to the provisions of the ate the purposes of the Legislature, the remedies Code of Practice in Louisiana, and the acts of in the courts of the United States are to be at the Legislature of that State. Upon this apcommon law, or in equity, not according to the plication, this court again declared that it is practice of the State courts, but according to the duty of the court to proceed in the suit acthe principles of common law and equity as cording to the rules prescribed by the Supreme distinguished and defined in that country from Court for proceedings in equity causes at the which we derived our knowledge of those February Term, 1822. That the proceedings principles; subject, of course, to such alter- of the district judge, and the orders made by ations as Congress might think proper to make. him in this cause (the very order now in ques. But that no act af Congress had been passed tion), were not in conformity with those rules affecting this question. That the Act of Con- and with chancery practice; but that it was gress of 1824 could have no application to the not a case in which a mandamus ought to case, because there were no courts of equity or issue, because the district judge was proceed. State laws in Louisiana, regulating the prac-ing in the cause; and however irregular that tice in equity cases. And again, in the same proceeding might be, the appropriate redress, if case of Story v. Livingston, which came before any, is to be obtained by an appeal, after a the court in 1839, 13 Peters, 368, one of the final decree shall be made in the cause. That a exceptions taken to the master's report was, writ of mandamus was not the appropriate that by a rule of the District Court, chancery remedy for any orders which may be made practice had been abolished, and that such a in a cause by å judge, in the exercise of his proceeding was unknown to the practice of the authority, although they may seem to bear court. This court says no such rule appears on harshly or oppressively upon the party. the record. But we think the occasion a proper *Such are the views which have been [*17 one to remark that if any such rule has been heretofore taken by this court upon the ques. made by the District Court of Louisiana, it is tions raised by the points which have been in violation of those rules which the Suprenie certified in the record before us; and which Court of the United States has passed to leave no doubt that they must all be answered regulate the practice in the courts of equity of l in the aflirmative. These questions having
been no repeatedly decided by this court, and
RIT of error to the Supreme Court of the the grounds upon which they rest so fully State of Ohio, to reverse the judgment of stated and published in the reports, that it is that court. unnecessary, if not unfit, now to treat this as The original action of ejectment was brought an open question. It is matter of extreme re in the Court of Common Pleas of Clinton Coungret that it appears to be the settled de ty, and taken thence by appeal to the Supreme termination of the district judge not to suffer Court; where it was tried, and a verdict and chancery practice to prevail in the Circuit judgment given for the plaintiffs, at May Court in Louisiana, in equity causes; in total | Term, 1833. Afterwards & new trial was disregard of the repeated decisions of this court ordered; and on a case stated, a judgment was and the rules of practice established by the rendered by the court in favor of the defendSupreme Court to be observed in chancery ant. The plaintiff prosecuted this writ of
error. This court, as has been heretofore decided, The case was argued, on the merits, by Mr. has not the power to compel that court to pro: Leonard for the plaintiffs, and by Mr. Buck ceed according to those established rules; all for the defendant. that we can do is to prevent proceedings other The decision of the court having been given wise, by reversing them when brought here on on the question of jurisdiction, those arguappeal.
ments are omitted. All the questions presented by the record are accordingly answered in the affirmative.
Mr. Chief Justice Taney delivered the opin.
ion of the court: This cause came on to be heard on the tran This case arises upon an action of ejectment script of the record from the Circuit Court of which was decided in the Supreme Court of the the United States for the Eastern District of State of Ohio for the County of Clinton, and Louisiana, and on the points and questions on being brought here from a State court, we which the judges of the said Circuit Court were have no authority to revise the judgment, unopposed in opinion, and which were certified to less jurisdiction is given by the 25th section this court for its opinion, agreeably to the of the Act of 1789. act of Congress in such case made and pro The land is situated in what is usually called vided, and was argued by counsel; on con- the Virginia military district, and, at the sideration whereof, it is the opinion of this trial, both parties derived title under the Act court, 1st. That chancery practice does prevail, of Congress of March 2, 1807, which was passed and should be extended to litigants in the said for the purpose of extending the time for lo. Circuit Court, and in this cause. 2d. That the cating Virginia military land warrants, beorder of the said court of the date of 9th tween the Little Miami and Sciota rivers. March, 1837, should be annulled and vacated. The plaintiffs made title as heirs-at-law of And, lastly, that this cause should be placed Thomas J. M'Arthur, *who obtained a [*19 upon a rule docket, and the complainants be patent for the lands in question in 1823, upon permitted to proceed according to chancery an entry and survey made for him in that year, practice; and the defendants be required to as assignee of part of a military land warrant answer without oyer of the documents prayed granted to John Trezuant. for, or a service of the bill in French, as prayed The defendant, who was in possession of the for. Whereupon it is now here ordered and land, claiming it as his own, in order to show decreed by this court that it be so certified to title out of the plaintiffs, offered in evidence the said Circuit Court with directions to pro- an entry in the name of John Tench, assignee ceed accordingly.
of part of the aforesaid warrant to Trezuant, made on the 8th of August, 1787; and a survey pursuant to the said entry, on the 7th of March, 1794, which was recorded June 24, 1796.
The plaintiffs having produced a complete 18*1 'LESSEE OF EFFIE COONS et al., legal title, as above stated, the prior survey of Plaintiffs in Error,
Tench was no bar to their recovery, unless it
was made so by the Act of 1807, before reCHARLES P. GALLAHER, Defendant in Error. ferred to. The first section of that act con
tains the following proviso:
“That no loJurisdiction under 25th section Judiciary Act. cations as aforesaid within the above mentioned
tract, shall, after the passing of this act, be It is not suficient to give the Supreme Court ju- made on tracts of land for which patents had risdiction in the case of a writ of error to the su: been previously issued, or which had been preme Court of a State, that the question as to the previously surveyed; and any patent which construction of an Act of Congress, might have been raised and migbt have been decided, and was
may nevertheless be obtained for land located involved in the case. It must appear elther in dio contrary to the provisions of this section, shall rect terms, or by necessary intendment, that it was be considered as null and void.” in fact brought to the notice of the court, and de
It seems to have been admitted in the State cided by it.
The case of Crowell v. Randall, 10 Peters, 898, court that this act of Congress intended to procited.
tect those surveys only that were made by law.
ful authority, and that the survey of Tench NOTB.-As to Jurisdiction of U. 8. Supreme Court, where is drawn in question, statute, treaty,
was no defense, unless it appeared that he was, oe Constitution of United States, see notes to 2 in truth, the assignee of a portion of Trezuant's L. ed. U. 8. 654 ; 4 L. ed. U. S. 97; 6 L. ed. U. 8. warrant. No assignment was produced at the 671.
Nature of declslon as affecting right of review, trial, but evidence was offered by the defend. see note to 68 L.R.A. 68
ant, from which the court may have presumed