Justices Kent, Yates and Thompson Uphold Fulton's Steamboat Monopoly [Trials]. Livingston, Robert [1746-1813], Defendant. Fulton, Robert [1765-1815], Defendant. The Opinions of the Judges of the Supreme Court, Delivered in the Court of Errors, In the Cause of Robert E. Livingston and Robert Fulton, vs. James Van Ingen, And Twenty Others. Albany: Printed by S. Southwick, 1812. Three parts. 12; 12; 23,  pp. Octavo (9" x 6"). Stab-stitched pamphlet with untrimmed edges, most signatures unopened. Light browning, faint dampspotting in places, a bit of rodent damage (?) to foot of text block near lower inside corner with no loss to text, early manuscript annotations to margins of p. 10 in the first part and p. 7 in the second, fold lines to final leaf. $750. * Only edition. This unanimous decision the Supreme Court of New York upheld the thirty-year monopoly on steamboat navigation on the Hudson River granted by the state legislature to Fulton and Livingston. This pamphlet contains the opinions of the court's three judges: Joseph C. Yates [1768-1837], Smith Thompson [1768-1843] and James Kent [1763-1847]. The longest of these is by Kent, the chief justice. A few years later another steamboat entrepreneur, Thomas Gibbons, defied the law and established a ferry line between New York and New Jersey. This led to the 1824 U.S. Supreme Court ruling Gibbons v. Ogden. Declaring that states cannot regulate interstate commerce, the court struck down Fulton's monopoly. The annotations are side-notes. We have seen identical notes in other copies in the same hand, which suggests they were last-minute additions by the printer or one of his assistants. Some copies we have seen do not have these notes. Sabin, A Dictionary of Books Relating to America 41637. Cohen, Bibliography of Early American Law 11509.
Book number 73244