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Three years before becoming President George Washington's first Attorney General, Edmund Randolph advises a lawyer on handling a case - most possibly written to his junior partner, future Chief Justice John Marshall
Richmond, Virginia, January 2, 1786. 6.5" x 8.75". "Autograph Letter Signed ""Edm: Randolph,"" 1 page, 6.5"" x 8.75"". Trimmed at all edges, removing letters on each line. Unnamed recipient. Stained, soiled, affixed to a heavier sheet of the same size. Good condition.In full, ""I have given a memorandum for the pro … subpoenas, with the necessary indorsements. It is true, [tha]t an attachment will not be in the ordinary form: … an attachment in chancery is the legal step. But [the] latter is far more ineffectual; since it can not jus:[tify] a detention of the effect in the hands of the pla … only security, which it presents, is, that if the other [de]fendants convey away the effects, they will be liable … their proper fortunes. I do not know the gentlemen, [b]ut if they should remove themselves out of the state, … chance will be a poor one. I use these observations by way of [a]dmonition to you to push the attachment which you have already levied. If you obtain judgment, you may settle, but cannot insure your cause; nor can you be hurt by failing in it. If any of the defendants in Virginia are about to leave it, send me affidavits of the [f]act - of their having Noah's effects in their hands and of Noah being indebted to you and the Messrs [S]miths and to what amount. I will then obtain a ne exeat. [P.]S. The attachment in chancery gives no preference, to the first who brings suit. I am Sir yr mo. Ob. Serv. Edm: Randolph""This letter may have been written to future Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Marshall who had been admitted to the Virginia bar in 1780. R. Kent Newmyer writes in John Marshall and the Heroic Age of the Supreme Court (Baton Rouge, Louisiana: LSU Press 2001) that Edmund Randolph ""took the newly minted lawyer in as a junior partner. Only two years older than Marshall, Randolph was an ideal conduit into the elite ranks of Virginia lawyers … Working alongside Randolph, Marshall learned on the job. And because the courts were closed to regular business from 1781-1784, there was ample time to do so … Marshall's mastery of the process is clear from the fact that Randolph transferred his extensive practice to him when Randolph became Governor in 1786."" Virginia law forbade executive officers from private practice in its courts. On December 1, 1786, Edmund Randolph was sworn in as the second Governor of Virginia, succeeding Patrick Henry."
      [Bookseller: University Archives]
Last Found On: 2016-06-20           Check availability:      Biblio    


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