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Report of the Case of the Trustees of Dartmouth College Against
1819. First Report of the Landmark Dartmouth College Case [Trial]. [Dartmouth College Case]. Farrar, Timothy [1788-1874], Reporter. Report of the Case of the Trustees of Dartmouth College Against William H. Woodward. Argued and Determined in the Superior Court of Judicature of the State of New-Hampshire, November 1817. And on Error in the Supreme Court of the United States, February 1819. Portsmouth: Published by John W. Forster, And West, Richardson, And Lord, Boston, [1819]. [iv], 406 pp. Octavo (9" x 5"). Original publisher boards, rebacked with replica of spine with printed paper title label, front hinge mended, front free endpaper re-hinged, untrimmed edges, several signatures unopened. A few tiny stains to boards, light fading to edges, corners bumped and worn. Some toning to text, occasional light foxing, minor tears to margins of a few leaves. * First published report. This is probably the most important American case concerning the contract right of corporations. The New Hampshire legislature passed a bill in 1816 that revoked Dartmouth College's original charter and converted the college from a private to a state institution. The college challenged the constitutionality of this act in the state Supreme Court without success, but the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the state's decision in a landmark opinion based on the contract clause of the Constitution. This decision represented "an assurance for all investors in American corporate enterprises that the terms upon which they had committed their capital could not be unilaterally altered by a state. At a time when corporations were first being widely used, it thus encouraged the expansion of American business enterprise. The decision vested the Corporation with indestructible contract rights, even against its creator" (Schwartz, 86, 111). "By construing the contract clause as a means of protecting corporate charters from state interventions, Marshall derived a significant limitation on state authority. As a result, various forms of private economic and social activity would enjoy security from state regulatory policy. Marshall thus encouraged, through constitutional sanction, the emergence of the relatively unregulated private, autonomous economic actor as the major participant in a liberal political economy that served the commonwealth by promoting enlightened
      [Bookseller: The Lawbook Exchange, Ltd.]
Last Found On: 2016-05-16           Check availability:      Biblio    

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