Baltimore: Printed for Samuel Butler and George Keatinge, 1805. ,12, -234, -244, -268, 6, 68 pp. 8vo. Three quarter morocco over marbled boards. First edition. A very good copy, moderate wear along joints and extremities, scattered foxing. Sabin 12204. Amer. Imprints 8173. Cohen 14471. Item #34988
"... In the name of themselves, and of all the People of the United States, for High Crimes & Misdemeanors, supposed to have been by Him Committed, with the Necessary Documents and Official Papers, From his Impeachment to final Acquittal. Taken in Short Hand by Charles Evans, and the Arguments of Counsel revised by them from his manuscript." Complete but quite oddly numbered as issued: numbers 50-51 are omitted, numbers 205-212 repeated; extra numbers are p. 101*-112*, 212* (i.e. 213*)-234*, 237*-244*. Chase (1741-1811) was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. His impeachment and trial, the only one ever of a U.S. Supreme Court justice, was politically motivated due to his strong stance against the Republicans and Jeffersonianism. Had the Republicans been successful, the conviction would have greatly undermined the independence of the judiciary. "Chase's acquittal meant that John Marshall and his court were safe from future attacks of this kind. It also demonstrated to Jefferson and future presidents that impeachment was a clumsy and inefficient way to handle politically hostile judges. On the other hand, members of the judiciary learned that it was dangerous for judges to use the bench to express political opinions that were contrary to prevailing democratic beliefs. After this confrontation, John Marshall attempted to establish the Supreme Court as an institution that was considered "above politics" and concerned only with legal-juridical questions," (ANB).