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Practical Proceedings in the Supreme Court of the State of New York: Hamilton's Practice Manual
ALM Media, LLC, January 2004, Pages: 137
Alexander Hamilton's Practical Proceedings in the Supreme Court of the State of New York was written at a time when New York State's constitution was only five years old and British troops had not yet left New York City. This new edition, published by the New York Law Journal to commemorate the 200th Anniversary of Hamilton's death, offers a fascinating window into the past.
Studying for the bar shortly after his heroic service in the Revolutionary War, Hamilton found there was no manual of proper legal procedures for him to consult. So he wrote one, which was to serve as a valuable reference for New York lawyers for years to come.
Hamilton's Practice Manual provides a concise yet complete treatment of New York Supreme Court procedure at the turn of the 18th Century, along with some substantive New York State law. Scholarly and witty, it includes many candid observations about some of the peculiarities of New York procedure, many of which were based on English law, and the new rules that were gradually replacing them
In its day, Hamilton's Practice Manual was widely relied upon by law students and lawyers struggling with the transition from English to American law. Today, it remains a unique guide to these two linked legal traditions, of interest to judges, lawyers, history buffs, and anyone who wants to know more about early American law practice in all its complexity and glory.
Alexander Hamilton, a graduate of King's College (Columbia), was an officer in the Continental Army, a delegate to the Constitutional Convention of 1787, and the first Secretary of the Treasury of the United States (1789-95). He was the co-author, with James Madison and John Jay, of The Federalist Papers. Alexander Hamilton practiced law in New York.
Julius Goebel Jr. [was] George Welwood Murray Professor Emeritus of Legal History at the School of Law, Columbia University.
Willard Sterne Randall is the award-winning author of twelve books, including Benjamin Franklin and His Son; Benedict Arnold, Patriot and Traitor; Thomas Jefferson: A Life; George Washington, A Life; Alexander Hamilton, A Life; and others. With his wife, the poet Nancy Nahra, he has co-authored four books, including American Lives, a two volume collection of short biographies widely used in colleges and universities. He is a contributing author to MHQ: The Quarterly Journal of Military History and regularly reviews biographies for New York Newsday and the Journal of American History.