James Madison Papers

New Hampshire Memorial, [27 February] 1795

New Hampshire Memorial

[27 February 1795]

On 25 February the House received “A memorial and remonstrance of the Legislature of the State of New Hampshire … praying the interference and support of Congress, in favor of the judicial power of the State Court, against an encroachment of the Judiciary of the United States, in reversing a decree of the Supreme Judicial Court of the State of New Hampshire, which was rendered in a case decided before the adoption of the present Constitution.” The House appointed JM chairman of a select committee to consider the memorial (Annals of Congress description begins Debates and Proceedings in the Congress of the United States … (42 vols.; Washington, 1834–56). description ends , 3d Cong., 2d sess., 1252). The case in question was Penhallow v. Doane’s Administrators (3 Dallas description begins A. J. Dallas, Reports of Cases Ruled and Adjudged in the Several Courts of the United States, and of Pennsylvania … (4 vols.; Philadelphia, 1790–1807). description ends 54); the New Hampshire memorial is printed in ASP description begins American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive, of the Congress of the United States … (38 vols.; Washington, 1832–61). description ends , Miscellaneous, 1:124. On 27 February JM submitted the following written report.

That, the subject of the said memorial being of a nature wholly judicial, and having undergone a course of judicial investigation, and of final decision by the Supreme-Court of the United States, the Committee have conceived themselves precluded from all enquiry into the particular merits of the case: nor can perceive any ground, on which legislative interference could be proper.

Ms (DNA: RG 233). In a clerk’s hand. Headed: “Made on the 27th. February, 1795. and ordered to lie on the table / Report, on the memorial of the Legislature of New Hampshire referred on the 26th. instant.”

Index Entries