Description : Explore the controversial legal history of the formation of the United States Prestatehood Legal Materials is your one-stop guide to the history and development of law in the U.S. and the change from territory to statehood. Unprecedented in its coverage of territorial government, this book identifies a wide range of available resources from each state to reveal the underlying legal principles that helped form the United States. In this unique publication, a state expert compiles each chapter using his or her own style, culminating in a diverse sourcebook that is interesting as well as informative. In Prestatehood Legal Materials, you will find bibliographies, references, and discussion on a varied list of source materials, including: state codes drafted by Congress county, state, and national archives journals and digests state and federal reports, citations, surveys, and studies books, manuscripts, papers, speeches, and theses town and city records and documents Web sites to help your search for more information and more Prestatehood Legal Materials provides you with brief overviews of state histories from colonization to acceptance into the United States. In this book, you will see how foreign countries controlled the laws of these territories and how these states eventually broke away to govern themselves. The text also covers the legal issues with Native Americans, inter-state and the Mexico and Canadian borders, and the development of the executive, legislative, and judicial branches of state government. This guide focuses on materials that are readily available to historians, political scientists, legal scholars, and researchers. Resources that assist in locating not-so-easily accessible materials are also covered. Special sections focus on the legal resources of colonial New York City and Washington, DC—which is still technically in its prestatehood stage. Due to the enormity of this project, the editor of Prestatehood Legal Materials created a Web page where updates, corrections, additions and more will be posted.
Description : At the remarkable age of 65, Nimrod O'Kelly--Ioner, former blacksmith--made the arduous trek from Missouri along the Oregon Trail in 1845 and became one of the first to stake a claim in the lush Willamette valley. Although he made few improvements to the land, he professed that he had a wife and family back home and thus had a right to 640 acres--one full square mile--of fertile ground. Over the next seven years, settlers continued to arrive, and many of these new neighbors grew suspicious of his entitlement. Slowly they began to encroach on his property. Eventually the dispute boiled over, leaving young Jeremiah Mahoney dead, a gaping gunshot wound in his chest. Curiously, the killer--72 year-old Nimrod O'Kelly--chose not to run, but to turn himself in, claiming self-defense. The events that followed provide an intricate look at law on the frontier--a place without jails, courtrooms, coroners, and crimelabs, where many settlers were as wild as the land, where judges traveled on horseback to conduct legal proceedings, and where convicted murderers often met their end on the gallows. Ultimately, Benton County vs. Nimrod O'Kelly was heard by the fledgling territory's Supreme Court. With marvelous depth and a lawyer's insight, author Ronald B. Lansing probes and analyzes the evidence, the law, the proceedings, and the politics surrounding one of Oregon's first extensively reported murder cases, and presents this incredible story from its simple beginning to its astonishing conclusion.