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The following is a list of the most notable trials in the United States:

Anne Hutchinson; sedition and heresy (the Antinomian controversy); imprisoned and banished......1637

Trials of Quakers in Massachusetts......1656-61

Jacob Leisler, New York, convicted and executed for treason......May 16, 1691

Trials for witchcraft, Massachusetts......1692

Thomas Maule, for slanderous publications and blasphemy, Massachusetts......1696

Nicholas Bayard, treason......1702

John Peter Zenger, for printing and publishing libels on the colonial government, November, 1734, acquitted......1735

William Wemms, James Hartegan, William McCauley, and other British soldiers, in Boston, Mass., for the murder of Crispus Attucks, Samuel Gray, Samuel Maverick, James Caldwell, and Patrick Carr.......March 5, 1770

Maj.-Gen. Charles Lee, court-martial after the battle of Monmouth; found guilty of, first, disobedience of orders in not attacking the enemy; second, unnecessary and disorderly retreat; third, disrespect to the commander-in-chief; suspended from command for one year, tried......July 4, 1778

John Hett Smith, for assisting Benedict Arnold, New York, not guilty......1780

Maj. John Andre, adjutant-general, British army, seized as a spy at Tappan, N. Y., Sept. 23, 1780, tried by military court and hanged......Oct. 2, 1780

Stewart, Wright, Porter, Vigol, and Mitchell, Western insurgents, found guilty......1795

William Blount, United States Senate, impeached for misdemeanor......1797

William Cobbett, for libelling the King of Spain and his ambassador, writing as “Peter Porcupine” in Porcupine's gazette, July 17, before Supreme Court of Pennsylvania; acquitted......1797

Thomas Cooper, of Northumberland, Pa., convicted under the sedition act of libel on the administration of President Adams in Reading Advertiser of Oct. 26, 1799, imprisonment for six months and $400 fine......1799

Duane, Reynolds, Moore, and Cumming acquitted of seditious riot, Pennsylvania......1799

Matthew Lyon convicted in Vermont, October, 1798, of writing for publication a letter calculated “to stir up sedition and to bring the President and the government into contempt” ; confined four months in Vergennes jail; fine of $1,000 paid by friends, and Lyon released......Feb. 9, 1799

J. T. Callender, for libel of President Adams in a pamphlet, The Prospect before us; tried at Richmond, Va., fined $200 and sentenced to nine months imprisonment......June 6, 1800

Thomas Daniel, for opening letters of a foreign minister......1800

Judge John Pickering impeached before the United States Senate, March 3, 1803, for malfeasance in the New Hampshire district court in October and November, 1802, in restoring ship Eliza, seized for smuggling, to its owners; Judge Pickering, though doubtless insane, is convicted and removed from office......March 4, 1804

Judge Samuel Chase impeached before the United States Senate, acquitted......1805

Thomas O. Selfridge tried for murder of Charles Austin on the public exchange in Boston......Aug. 4, 1806

Aaron Burr, for treason, Virginia; acquitted......March 27–Sept. 7, 1807

Col. Thomas H. Cushing, by court-martial at Baton Rouge, on charges of Brig-Gen. Wade Hampton......1812

Patrick Byrne, for mutiny, by general court-martial at Fort Columbus; sentenced to death......May 22, 1813

Gen. W. Hull, commanding the northwestern army of the United States, for cowardice in surrender of Detroit, Aug. 16, etc.; by court-martial, held at Albany, sentenced to be shot; sentence approved by the President, but execution remitted......Jan. 3, 1814

Dartmouth College case, defining the power of States over corporations......1817-18

Arbuthnot and Ambrister, by court-martial, April 26, 1818, for inciting Creek Indians to war against the United States; executed by order of General Jackson......April 30, 1818

Stephen and Jesse Boorn, at Manchester, Vt., Nov. 1819, for the murder of Louis [119] Colvin, who disappeared in 1813; sentenced to be hanged......Jan. 28, 1820

[Six years after Colvin disappeared an uncle of the Boorns dreamed that Colvin came to his bedside, declared the Boorns his murderers, and told where his body was buried. This was April 27, 1819. The Boorns were arrested, confessed the crime circumstantially, were tried and convicted, but not executed, because Colvin was found alive in New Jersey. Wilkie Collins's novel, The dead alive, founded upon this case.]

Capt. David Porter, by court-martial at Washington, for exceeding his powers in landing 200 men on Porto Rico and demanding an apology for arrest of the commanding officer of the Beadle, sent by him, October, 1824, to investigate alleged storage of goods on the island by pirates; suspended for six months......July 7, 1825

James H. Peck, judge of United States district court for the district of Missouri, impeached for alleged abuse of judicial authority; trial begins May 4, 1830; acquitted......Jan. 31, 1831

John A. Murrell, the great Western land pirate, chief of noted bandits in Tennessee and Arkansas, whose central committee, called “Grand council of the Mystic clan,” is broken up by arrest of its leader......1834

[Murrell lived near Denmark, Madison co., Tenn. He was a man without fear, physical or moral. His favorite operations were horse-stealing and “negrorunning.” He promised negroes their freedom if they allowed him to conduct them North, selling them on the way by day and stealing them back by night, always murdering them in the end. He was captured by Virgil A. Stewart in 1834, convicted, and sentenced to the penitentiary, where he died.]

Spanish pirates (twelve in number), for an act of piracy on board the brig Mexican; trial at Boston; seven found guilty, five acquitted......Nov. 11-25, 1834

Heresy trial; Rev. Lyman Beecher, Presbyterian, before the presbytery and synod of Cincinnati, on charges preferred by Dr. Wilson, of holding and teaching Pelagian and Arminian doctrines; acquitted......June 9 et seq., 1835

Rev. Albert Barnes, Presbyterian, for heresies in Notes on the epistles to the Romans; tried and acquitted by presbytery of Philadelphia, June 30–July 8, 1835; condemned by the synod and suspended for six months, but acquitted by the general assembly......1836

Case of slave schooner Amistad......1839-40

Alexander McLeod, a Canadian, charged as an accomplice in burning the steamer Caroline in the Niagara River, and in the murder of Amos Durfee, is taken from Lockport to New York on habeas corpus, May, 1841. Great Britain asks his release in extra session of Congress; Mr. Webster advocates his discharge. A special session of the circuit court, ordered by the legislature of New York at Utica, tries and acquits him......Oct. 4-12, 1841

A. W. Holmes, of the crew of the William Brown for murder on the high seas (forty-four of the passengers and crew escaping in the long-boat, the sailors threw some passengers overboard to lighten the boat, April 19, 1841), convicted, but recommended to mercy......May, 1842

Thomas W. Dorr, Rhode Island; treason......1842

Alexander S. Mackenzie (Somers's mutiny)......1842

Bishop Benjamin T. Onderdonk, of New York, for immoral conduct; by ecclesiastical court, suspended......Dec. 10, 1844–Jan. 3, 1845

Ex-Senator J. C. Davis, of Illinois; T. C. Sharp, editor of Warsaw signal; Mark Aldrich, William N. Grover, and Col. Levi Williams, for murder of Hiram and Joe Smith (Mormons) ; trial begins at Carthage, Ill.; acquitted......May 21, 1845

Albert J. Tirrell (the somnambulist murderer), for killing Maria A. Bickford......1846

[Acquitted on the plea that the murder was committed while he was sleep-walking.]

Dr. John W. Webster, for the murder of Dr. George W. Parkman in the Medical College, Boston, Nov. 23, 1849. Webster partly burns his victim. The remains identified by a set of false teeth. Webster convicted and hanged; trial......March 19-30, 1850

Catherine N. Forrest v. Edwin Forrest; divorce and alimony granted to Mrs. Forrest......Dec. 16, 1851–Jan. 26, 1852

Anthony Burns, fugitive-slave case, Boston......May 27-31, 1854 [120]

Dr. Stephen T. Beale, ether case......1855

United States v. Henry Hertz et al., for hiring and retaining persons to go out of the United States to enlist in the British foreign legion for the Crimea: tried in the district court of the United States for eastern district of Pennsylvania......1855

Slave case in Cincinnati, O. (see Harper's magazine, vol. XII., p. 691)......April, 1856

James P. Casey, for shooting James King, of William, editor of the San Francisco Bulletin, and Charles Cora, murderer of United States Marshal Richardson; tried and hanged by the vigilance committee in San Francisco......May 20, 1856

Dred Scott case (q. v.)......1856

R. J. M. Ward ( “the most extraordinary murderer named in the calendar of crime” ), Cleveland, O.......1857

Emma A. Cunningham, for the murder of Dr. Burdell, in New York City, Jan. 30, 1856; acquitted......May, 1857

Daniel E. Sickles, for killing Philip Barton Key, Washington, D. C.; acquitted......April 4-26, 1859

John Brown, for insurrection in Virginia; tried Oct. 29, and executed at Charlestown, Va.......Dec. 2, 1859

Albert W. Hicks, pirate; tried at Bedloe's Island, May 18-23; convicted of triple murder on the oyster-sloop Edwin A. Johnson in New York Harbor; hanged......July 13, 1860

Officers and crew of the privateer Sa-vannah, on the charge of piracy; jury disagree......Oct. 23-31, 1861

Nathaniel Gordon, for engaging in the slave-trade, Nov. 6-8, 1861; hanged at New York......Feb. 21, 1862

Fitz-John Porter tried by military court......1863

C. L. Vallandigham, for treasonable utterances; by court-martial in Cincinnati; sentence of imprisonment during the war commuted to banishment to the South......May 5-16, 1863

Pauline Cushman, Union spy; sentenced to be hanged by a court-martial held at General Bragg's headquarters; is left behind at the evacuation of Shelbyville, Tenn., and rescued by Union troops......June, 1863

For conspiracy against the United States, in organizing the Order of American Knights or Sons of Liberty about May 16; tried by a military commission at Indianapolis, Ind., beginning Sept. 27; William A. Bowles, L. P. Milligan, and Stephen Horsey sentenced to be hanged......Oct. 17, 1864

J. Y. Beall, tried at Fort Lafayette by a military commission, for seizing the steamer Philo Parsons on Lake Erie, Sept. 19, and other acts of war, without visible badge of military service; sentenced to death and hanged; trial occurs......December, 1864

Capt. Henry Wirtz, commander of Andersonville prison during the war, for cruelty; trial begins Aug. 21; Wirtz hanged......Nov. 10, 1865

Conspirators for assassination of President Lincoln......1865

John H. Surratt......1867

In the case of William H. McCardle, of Mississippi, testing the constitutionality of the reconstruction act of 1867; Matthew H. Carpenter, of Wisconsin, Lyman Trumbull, of Illinois, and Henry Stanberry, Attorney-General, appear for the government, and Judge Sharkey, Robert J. Walker, of Mississippi, Charles O'Conor, of New York, Jeremiah S. Black, of Pennsylvania, and David Dudley Field for McCardle; reconstruction act repealed during the trial; habeas corpus issued......Nov. 12, 1867

Andrew Johnson impeachment......1868

Colonel Yerger, for murder of Colonel Crane, U. S. A., at Jackson, Miss.......June 8, 1869

William H. Holden, governor of North Carolina, impeached and removed......March 22, 1870

Daniel MacFarland, for the murder of Albert D. Richardson, Nov. 25, 1869, in New York City; acquitted......April 4–May 10, 1870

David P. Butler, governor of Nebraska, impeached for appropriating school funds, and suspended......June 2, 1870

“The Bible in the public schools,” case of; J. D. Miner et al. v. the board of education of Cincinnati et al.; tried in the Superior Court of Cincinnati; arguments for the use of the Bible in the public school by William M. Ramsey, George R. Sage, and Rufus King; against, J. B. Stallo, George Hoadly, and Stanley Matthews......1870

Mrs. Wharton, for murder of Gen. W. S. [121] Ketchum, U. S. A., at Washington, June 28, 1871; acquitted......Dec. 4, 1871–Jan. 24, 1872

George C. Barnard (judge of Supreme Court, New York) impeached, May 13, for corruption, and deposed......Aug. 18, 1872

Captain Jack and three other Modoc Indians tried, July 3, for the massacre of Gen. E. R. S. Canby, U. S. A., and Rev. Dr. Thomas (commissioner), April 11; convicted and hanged at Fort Klamath, Or.......Oct. 3, 1873

Edward S. Stokes, for the murder of James Fisk, Jr., in New York, Jan. 6. 1872; first jury disagree, June 19, 1872; second trial (guilty and sentenced to be hanged Feb. 28, 1873, Dec. 18, 1872–Jan. 6, 1873; third trial (guilty of manslaughter in third degree; sentence, four years in prison at Sing Sing)......Oct. 13-29, 1873

W. M. Tweed, for frauds upon the city and county of New York; sentenced to twelve years imprisonment......Nov. 19, 1873

A. Oakey Hall, ex-mayor of New York, for complicity with the Tweed “ring” frauds; jury disagree, March 1-21, 1872; second trial, jury disagree, Nov. 1; acquitted......Dec. 24, 1873

David Swing, for heresy before the Chicago Presbytery, April 15 et seq., in twenty-eight specifications by Prof. Francis L. Patton; acquitted after a long trial......1874

[Professor Swing withdrew from the Presbyterian Church and formed an independent congregation.]

Theodore Tilton v. Henry Ward Beecher, for adultery, Brooklyn, N. Y.; jury disagree; case ended......July 2, 1875

Jesse Pomeroy, the Boston boy murderer, for killing of Horace W. Millen, April 22, 1874, supposed to be Pomeroy's fourth victim......1875

Gen. O. E. Babcock, private secretary of President Grant, tried at St. Louis for complicity in whiskey frauds; acquitted......Feb. 7, 1876

W. W. Belknap, United States Secretary of War, impeached; acquitted......Aug. 1, 1876

John D. Lee, for the Mountain Meadow massacre, Sept. 15, 1857; convicted and executed......March 23, 1877

Col. Thomas Buford, for killing Judge Elliott at Frankfort, Ky.; acquitted on ground of insanity; trial......July, 1879

Whittaker, colored cadet at West Point, by military court for injuring himself on pretence of being hurt by others, April 6; expelled......1880

Lieutenant Flipper, colored, by military court, for embezzlement and false statements, November, 1881; dismissed from the service......1882

Charles J. Guiteau, for the assassination of President Garfield; convicted, Feb. 26; hanged......June 30, 1882

Star Route trials......1882

John Cockrill, managing editor of the St. Louis Post-despatch, for fatally shooting Colonel Slayback; acquitted......Oct. 13, 1882

Debris suit (California), decided against hydraulic miners, Judge Sawyer, of the United States court, San Francisco, Cal., granting a perpetual injunction......Jan. 7, 1884

William Berner, convicted at Cincinnati of manslaughter in killing William H. Kirk......March 28, 1884

[Berner was a confessed murderer; the verdict of manslaughter, when twenty untried murderers were in the city jail, led to a six days riot, during which the courthouse and other buildings were set on fire, forty-five persons were killed, and 138 injured.]

Brig.-Gen. D. G. Swaim, judge-advocategeneral of the army, tried by court-martial for attempt to defraud a banking firm in Washington, and failing to report an army officer who had duplicated his pay account; sentenced to suspension from duty for twelve years on half-pay; trial opens......Nov. 15, 1884

James D. Fish, president of the Marine Bank, of New York, secretly connected with the firm of Grant & Ward, convicted of misappropriation of funds, April 11, and sentenced to ten years at hard labor in Sing Sing, N. Y.......June 27, 1885

Ferdinand Ward, of the suspended firm of Grant & Ward, New York City, indicted for financial frauds, June 4; convicted and sentenced to ten years at hard labor in Sing Sing......Oct. 31, 1885

[Released, April 30, 1892.]

Henry W. Jaehne, vice-president of the New York common council, for receiving [122] a bribe to support Jacob Sharp's Broadway surface road on Aug. 30, 1884; sentence, nine years and ten months in Sing Sing......May 20, 1886

Alfred Packer, one of six miners, who killed and ate his companions when starving in their camp on the site of Lake City, Col., in 1874; convicted at New York of manslaughter, and sentenced to forty years imprisonment......August, 1886

Trial of Jacob Sharp; found guilty of bribery and sentenced to four years imprisonment and a fine of $5,000.......July 14, 1887

[Sentence reversed by court of appeals.]

Anarchists at Chicago: Twenty-two indicted, May 27, 1886; seven convicted of murder, Aug. 20; four (Spies, Parsons, Fischer, and Engel) hanged; and one (Lingg) commits suicide......Nov. 11, 1887

[Governor Altgeld pardoned all the anarchists (Schwab, Neebe, and Fielden) in prison, June 26, 1893.]

City of New Orleans against administratrix of the estate of Myra Clark Gaines, deceased, Jan. 9, 1885, in Supreme Court of United States; judgment against the city for over $500,000......May 13, 1889

[About 1836 Myra Clark Gaines filed a bill in equity to recover real estate in the possession of the city of New Orleans. Her father, Daniel Clark, who died in New Orleans a reputed bachelor, Aug. 16, 1813, by will dated May 20, 1811, gave the property to his mother, and by memorandum for a will (which was never found) made in 1813, gave it to his daughter Myra. The latter will was received by the Supreme Court of Louisiana Feb. 18, 1856, and the legitimacy of Myra questioned. Judge Billings, of the United States circuit court at New Orleans, rendered a decision which recognized the probate of the will of 1813, in April, 1877; an appeal was taken, and in 1883 judgment was again given in favor of Mrs. Gaines for $1,925,667 and interest. The final appeal, June, 1883, resulted as above. In 1861 the value of the property was estimated at $35,000,000.]

Dr. Patrick Henry Cronin, Irish dynamite nationalist (expelled from the Clanna-Gael, and denounced as a spy by Alexander Sullivan and the leaders, termed the

“triangle,” and condemned to death by them for accusing them of embezzling funds allotted for dynamiting in England in February, May 4), found murdered at Lake View, Chicago......May 22, 1889

Coroner's jury declare the murder to be the result of a conspiracy, of which Alexander Sullivan, P. O'Sullivan, Daniel Coughlin, and Frank Woodruff (connected with the Clan-na-Gael) were the principals. Alexander Sullivan and others arrested, June 12; Sullivan released on high bail......June 15, 1889

Martin Burke arrested at Winnipeg, Canada, indicted about June 20. The grand jury at Chicago, after sixteen days investigation, indict Martin Burke, John F. Beggs, Daniel Coughlin, Patrick O'Sullivan, Frank Woodruff, Patrick Cooney, and John Kunz, with others unknown, of conspiracy and of the murder of Patrick Henry Cronin......June 29, 1889

Coughlin, Burke, O'Sullivan, Kunz, and Beggs, for murder of Cronin in Chicago, May 6: trial begins Aug. 30; the first three are sentenced to imprisonment for life, Kunz for three years, and Beggs discharged......Dec. 16, 1889

[Second trial of Daniel Coughlin began Nov. 3, 1893; acquitted by jury, March 8, 1894.]

Commander B. H. McCalla, of United States steamship Enterprise, by courtmartial for malfeasance and cruelty, April 22, on finding of a court of inquiry held in Brooklyn navy-yard, March 11, suspended from rank and duty for three years, sentence approved by Secretary Tracy......May 15, 1890

Dr. T. Thacher Graves, for murder of Mrs. Josephine Barnaby, of Providence, R. I., by poison, at Denver, Col.......1891

[While awaiting his second trial he committed suicide in the county jail at Denver, Sept. 3, 1893.]

Rev. Charles A. Briggs, charged by the presbytery of New York, Oct. 5, 1891, with teaching doctrines “which conflict irreconcilably with, and are contrary to, the cardinal doctrines taught in the Holy Scriptures,” in an address at the Union Theological Seminary in New York, Jan. 20, 1891: case dismissed, Nov. 4; prosecuting committee appeal to the general assembly. Nov. 13; judgment reversed and case remanded to the presbytery of New [123] York for new trial, May 30, 1892; Professor Briggs acquitted after a trial of nineteen days......Dec. 30, 1892

John Y. McKane, Gravesend, L. I., for election frauds; convicted and sentenced to Sing Sing for six years......Feb. 19, 1894

Miss Madeline V. Pollard, for breach of promise, against Representative W. C. P. Breckinridge, of Kentucky; damages, $50,000; trial begun March 8, 1894, at Washington, D. C.; verdict of $15,000 for Miss Pollard, Saturday......April 14, 1894

Patrick Eugene Prendergast, for the murder of Carter Harrison, mayor of Chicago, Oct. 28, 1893; plea of defence, insanity; jury find him sane and he is hanged......July 13, 1894

Eugene V. Debs, president American Railroad Union, charged with conspiracy in directing great strike on the Western railroads, and acquitted......1894

[He was sentenced to six months imprisonment for contempt of court in violating its injunction in 1895.]

William R. Laidlaw, Jr., v. Russell Sage, for personal injuries at time of bomb explosion in the latter's office, Dec. 4, 1891; suit brought soon afterwards; plaintiff awarded heavy damages by jury; defendant appealed; case still in the courts.

Leon Czolgosz indicted in Buffalo for murder of President McKinley, Sept. 16, 1901; tried Sept. 23-24; found guilty on second day; executed in Auburn (N. Y.) prison......Oct. 29, 1901

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