Letters from Sumner to Story, Washington D.C. (1834)

Source: Library of Congress, Joseph Story Papers

Letters from Sumner to Story, Washington D.C. (1834), Primary Sources on Copyright (1450-1900), eds L. Bently & M. Kretschmer, www.copyrighthistory.org

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            Chapter 1 Page 1 of 8 total

No Translation available.

                                                                                                                  March 19, 1834

                              Supreme Court Room

My Dear Judge Story,
                              The opinion of the Court has just been delivered in
the case of Wheaton V. Peters. The appearance of the parties &
of the different judges I have thought could be interesting to
you as an individual & as a judge - Judge
McLean, of course, read the opinion of the Court, which
appeared to me able & well considered, much
above my estimate of his powers. Mr. Wheaton
appeared strongly excited during its reading. Mr.
P[eters] was anxious but perfectly calm. Upon
its reading being finished, Judge Thompson said that he
differed from the Court - that in question was one of
the most important ever decided - that he
had not written out his opinion - but could
give [XXX] purport of it. He spoke with
much feeling - supporting a common law
property of an author - & adopting Webster's argument
on the requisites of a St[atute]. As to this last
point he said the court were equally divided,
so far as the operation of the St[atute] of 1802 went.
Judge Baldwin followed, expressing his hope,
that he should not have been obliged during
this term to have given an opinion, assenting


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