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On Mr. Orendorff's motion the report was adopted, and the persons named therein were declared members of the Association.
The President, Oliver A. Harker, delivered the President's Annual Address.
[The address will be found in Part II.]
Mr. Matheny presented his report as Secretary-Treasurer to January 21, 1896, as follows:
8409 42 From W. L. Gross, late Treasurer
Annual dues and admission fees collected by him during annual meeting of 1895
72 00 From admission fee From annual dues..... From voluntary contributions in acknowledgment of extra copies of Annual Report of 1895, vizGeorge W. Smith....
50 00 Edgar A. Bancroft.
5 00 595 00
To Frank Simmons, account books.........
To Illinois State Journal, second notices of dues...
On 500 in vitations to banquet, other than members..
Salary of Secretary and Treasurer..
1 00 16 75 1 99 2 60 1 00
Annual Meeting and Banquet of 1895
Watch Factory Band...
SUMMARY Total receipts....
$1,181 42 Total expenditures... Balance on deposit in the First National Bank of Springfield...
284 10 Respectfully submitted,
J. H. MATHENY.
Secretary and Treasurer. MR. MATHENY: Aside from the financial statement as exhibited in the Treasurer's report, I have but little to add as Secretary. There have been no occurrences of moment in the history of the Association during the past year. The membership at present is somewhat larger than it was a year ago. There have been some deaths and some withdrawals, but they have been more than offset by the acquisition of new members. I wish to state in this connection that I think I have perfected arrangements for printing the report of this meeting with absolute promptness, and unless something unforseen occurs it will be on the desks of the members within thirty days of the adjournment of the meeting.
MR. HAMILTON: I move you, sir, that the report be received and adopted.
Mr. MATHENY: It has been usual to refer the report of the Treasurer to a committee, and I ask that that be done in accordance with the usual custom. I will move that the report of the Treasurer, with the accompanying vouchers, be referred to a committee to audit the same.
The motion prevailed, and the President appointed as such committee E. B. Hamilton, S. P. Wheeler and E. B. Sherman.
PRESIDENT HARKER: The next number on the program is the report of the Committee on Law Reform. Judge Callahan is chairman of that committee.
MR. WILLIAMS: As Judge Callahan is not here, I move that the report be passed for the present.
PRESIDENT HARKER: It will be so ordered, if there are no objections.
JUDGE JAMES H. CARTWRIGHT, of the Supreme Court of Illinois, delivered an address on “ The Briefs and Argument that Help the Court."
[The address will be found in Part II.]
PRESIDENT HARKER: It was the recommendation of the Executive Committee that the papers be discussed generally by members of the Association. Whether it is the desire of the Association to discuss the papers immediately after they are read, or at some future time, is something which must be left entirely with the Association, and the chair would like to hear either from members of the committee or others on that matter.
MR. BRADWELL: Mr. President, would it not be desirable to complete the programme as far as possible, and then have the discussion?
MR. PAYNE: With reference to the paper last read, I feel much like the man who, not being very good on praying, had the Lord's Prayer printed and hung over his bed, and every night pointed up to the printed prayer and said: "Lord, those are my sentiments.” (Laughter.]
Laughter.] The paper so admirably expresses the sentiments of common sense that I think it is unnecessary to add anything to it.
MR. SHERMAN: While we all agree with the sentiments expressed in the paper, it is not every lawyer who is capable of putting the suggestions into practice. On one occasion, after an oral argument of three days on a case, I requested an attorney who had been forty years at the bar to formulate into a series of legal propositions the argument he had been making, and to my utter astonishment I found him unable to do so. He was a lawyer of good ability, who had practiced nearly forty years before the Supreme Court, and had argued and carried to successful conclusions many cases involving large amounts. He could make a good oral argument, but he was utterly unable to formulate a series of logical
propositions that covered his case. I believe that the suggestions of Judge Cartwright are correct, and that the brief which he recommends is the best brief. It has occurred to me sometimes that at the conclusion of the brief it would be well to summarize the reasoning of counsel. Of course if the authorities are at first fully stated, it is not so necessary; but even then I think it advisable, perhaps, to again state the conclusions which have been reached in a series of propositions.
MR. BRADWELL: Mr. President, I must certainly protest. I was so delighted with the paper that I could hardly express myself, and I felt sure that when my friend, Brother Sherman, got up he would do something to spoil it if it was possible. He wants to add on some kind of an appendix, which is not needed at all. I am for the paper as it stands--every word of it-and I tell you if it was followed out a good many more lawyers would win their cases.
MR. GROSS: I listened to Judge Cartwright's paper with more than pleasure. He has sketched out, in my judgment, the typical brief-(Mr. Payne, "The ideal brief”) —yes, the ideal brief, and if all attorneys were capable, if they were so constituted mentally, that they could present their cases in the form indicated by Judge Cartwright in his paper, all would be well. But I am inclined to think, notwithstanding what my brother, Judge Bradwell, has said, that there is something in what Mr. Sherman has said. In my experience at the bar, I have observed on more than one occasion-I might say on many occasions—that most excellent lawyers (by that I mean men well read and ripe in experience) were lacking in that character of mind which enables them to analyze their cases logically and proceed from proposition to proposition, followed by conclusion in a logical sequence. All men's minds are not endowed with this quality. It is to be regretted, perhaps, that this is so, but it is. In so far as this paper shall, by way of suggestion, induce lawyers to drop into a settled form in the preparation of their briefs and arguments, it will answer a wholesome purpose.
But, Mr. President, if I understood correctly what Judge Cartwright said about oral argument, I must say that I do not entirely agree with him. I believe that the bar will support me when I say that the general impression of the bar is
that our courts of last resort for many years have discouraged oral argument, and I believe I can illustrate that by the rules of the Supreme Court themselves. They set down twenty cases a day, and under the rules each party to a litigation is entitled to a certain specified time for argument. But under the rules of the Supreme Court, it is a literal impossibility that counsel can have the opportunity of arguing orally in very many cases. We had an illustration of it here during the last term of the Supreme Court, where a record was filed, and under the rules the abstracts and briefs of the appellant were required to be filed therewith. Now, under the rules, the appellee has a given time in which to file his brief. But under the rules, the hearing of that cause came on the same day that the record was filed! And, mark you, under those same rules, no oral argument in the Supreme Court will be heard unless the printed briefs of the appellee are on file, and it is absolutely impossible, under the rules as they now stand, for the appellee to file his brief and argument, if you please, unless he anticipates the argument of the appellant. He must know, he must have prescience sufficient to anticipate the argument of his adversary, else his mouth is closed. Without extending illustrations, I want to say that my experience at the bar, and for what little time I may have served on the bench, has made me a firm believer in oral argument; and, I think, instead of being discouraged, the rules of the court ought to be so modified and changed that eithe: party, by his counsel, may be heard orally, as is the case in the Supreme Court of the United States. Now, in respect to oral arguments, if I caught the spirit of Judge Cartwright's paper, it was rather by way of discouragement, intimating that if a printed brief was filed, that was all that ought to be required. He states truly when he says that in many cases the oral argument is but a re-statement of the printed argument. That I understand to be so. I have observed it repeatedly in my own experience. But I want to say that I am firmly impressed with the belief that the intelligent lawyer at the bar, talking to the court and looking them in the eye, will, if he knows his case and knows what he is talking about, impress the court by his oral argument as it is simply impossible to do by any written or printed argument. Let man state his case orally. I would rather undertake to impress a court of last resort with the facts of the case orally than in writing. There is something about the person of the man who speaks, and when the case is