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were in attendance. At ten o'clock the justices of the Supreme Judicial Court came in, led by his Honor, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Chief Justice, and accompanied by his Excellency W. Murray Crane, Governor of the Commonwealth, who occupied a place upon the bench at the right of the Chief Justice. All remained standing while proclamation was made by the crier, according to the ancient formula used in opening the courts of Massachusetts. The address to the court by Attorney-General Knowlton, representing the members of the bar, and the response by Chief Justice Holmes followed, after which the court adjourned.

The address of Professor Thayer was delivered in Sanders Theatre, Harvard University, Cambridge, at four o'clock P. M. The severest snow storm of the season bad set in before midday, but this did not prevent the attendance of a very large audience, comprising the Faculty and students of the Harvard Law School, heads of other departments in the University, julges and members of the bar from different sections of the Commonwealth. As President Eliot was absent from the country, the speaker was introduced by Dr. Henry Pickering Walcott, Acting President of the University.

Two hundred and twenty-five persons sat down at the dinner given in the evening under the auspices of the Bar Association of the City of Boston, in the banquet hall of the New Algonquin Club. The size of the room so closely limited the number who could be accommodated that a large number of the members of the Bar were necessarily excluded from attendance upon the din

Professor John Chipman Gray, of the Harvard Law School, President of the Bar Association of the City of Boston, presided, and introduced the speakers of the evening, who were Professor Tucker of Virginia and Richard Olney of Massachusetts. Their addresses closed the exercises of the day.

ner.

PROCEEDINGS IN THE SUPREME JUDICIAL COURT

OF MASSACHUSETTS.

Address of Attorney-General Knowlton.

Upon this morning, a century ago, the Supreme Court of the United States assembled for the first time in the city of Washington. The term city was one of courtesy rather than of description; for it was a place of swamps and wools, a city without inhalitants, a town without houses. Even Pennsylvania Avenue, to-day the most distinctly national, if not the most historic, street in America, was a morass covered with underbrush, impassable to horse or foot, without visible demarkation, a tangled wilderness. There was only the dream of a capital. But in that city and upon the very eminence where it met this day one hundred years ago, the court has sinco always been held, though more than once within sound, even within the very sight, of the guns of the enemies of the Republic.

It happened, moreover, that on this same day, and in this same place, the commission of a new Chief Justice was read; and the term was presided over for the first time by one who was destined, for more than a third of the century that has since intervened, to direct and control the policy of the court, and to establish the place which it has since maintained, not only as one of the three great and co-ordinate departments of the Government of the Republic, but also as the most august anil powerful tribunal in the civilized world. This new Chief Justice was John Marsball of Virginia.

The bar of the United States has deemed these two auspicious events of sufficient moment to deserve the attention of the courts upon the occasion of this anniversary. Occurring, by one of those signal coincidences with which history is replete, upon the first judicial day of the nineteenth century, they also marked the birth and beginning, if not the creation and the cause, of the national grandeur which has characterized that century. Indeed, so closely have we come to trace cause and effect between the judgments of that court and the growth of the nation, that to-day, even upon this threshold of another century, when, as then, men are at issue upon a momentous question relating to the future policy of the United States, the voice of clamor is hushed, and Congress waits until this same august tribunal pronounces the decree which shall bind or expand, as the case may be, the wings of National ambition.

Up to that time the importance of the Supreme Court in the scheme of the Federal Government had scarcely been appreciated. In the original proposals for the erection of a capitol, prepared, I believe, under the direction of George Washington himself, no provision was made for the accommodation of the court. The founders of the nation had inherited the traditions of the mother country, where, owing to the absolute power of Parliament, the function of the judiciary was limited to the settlement of private disputes, its only relation to the Government being on the criminal side. The idea of enforcement of constitutional limitations by the judiciary upon the other departments of the Government and upon the States, axiomatic as such doctrines appear to us, was at that time by no means understood, much less conceded.

Even the justices themselves failed to realize their importance. Appointments to the bench were often declined, and resignations were frequent. Some judges retired to go upon the bench of a State court. Both of the Chief Justices who preceded Marshall (not counting Rutledge, whose appointment was not confirmed, and who presided only one term) resigned their offices to become ministers to foreign courts; and Jay, the first Chief Justice, when asked after an interval of retirement to resume his position, declined, saying, “I left the bench perfectly convinced that, under a system so defective, it could not attain the energy, weight, and dignity which were essential to its affording due support to the National Government."

The whole business of the court during the first eleven years of its existence is recorded in less than a single volume of the size of current reports. Most of the questions before it concerned procedure and practice in the Federal courts. The meagre decisions touching the scope of its own powers and duties were for the most part confined to denial rather than assertion, like its refusal to advise the President, and its deciding, or rather its hesitation in deciding, in Ilayburn's case, that Congress could not im pose upon it the duty of acting as auditor to hear pension claims. It did assert the right to hear the case of a citizen against a State, and to enter judgment against the State; but this right was promptly taken away by an amendment to the Constitution. Even Marshall continued to be a member of the President's Cabinet after his appointment to the bench, until the close of the Presidential term. So little was the true function of the court

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understood, that one of the earliest cases reported seems to have consisted of the trial of issues of fact by a jury, the charge being given by one of the justices. It had been a court of weak beginnings and of insignificant achievements. It had not found its place in the scheme of government. When the nineteenth century came in its great work was yet before it.

The Federal Constitution was no spontaneous utterance of a united people. It was the result of a long, a bitter, and an unending contest. The conflict between the sovereignty of the State and the sovereignty of the Nation did not then begin, nor is it yet ended. Although, when the only alternative in sight was anarchy, a sullen assent was vouchsafed to the terms of the Constitution, both sides reserved the right to continue the contest. Both claimed that it could be interpreted to meet their views. Moreover, upon its adoption other contentions arose upon the question how far it acted as a restraint upon the executive and the legislative departments. The beginning of this century saw these contentions, and especially that relating to the sovereignty of the States, existing in all their fierceness, threatening the destruction of the Republic. The Nation was at the parting of the ways.

The only power adequate to the settlement of these questions under the Constitution (and even this was not then conceded) was the Supreme Court. But a chief was needed to direct the work of that court, who should have the courage to assert its dignity and power. He must be one who had participated in the discussions leading to the adoption of the Constitution, familiar with its origin and its history. He must be not only a great and sound lawyer, but one whose public career, no less than the spotlessness of his personal reputation, had earned for

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