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LAWS OF THE UNITED STATES
ADOPTION OF THE CONSTITUTION
TO THE END OF THE
FREDERICK C. BRIGHTLY, ESQ.,
OF THE PAILADELPHIA BAR; AUTHOR OF "THE LAW OF COSTS," "EQUITY JURISPRUDENCE," ETC.; EDITOR OF “ PURDON'S DIGEST OF TAR
LAWS OF PENNSYLVANIA,” ETC.
18 6 5.
Entered, according to act of Congress, in the year 1857, by
FREDERICK C. BRIGIITLY,
STEREOTYPED DE MEARSDUSENDEBY.
No apology is offered for presenting to the Profession another Digest of the Laws of the United States, simply because the Author feels that none is needed. That such a work was required is abundantly shown by the numerous flattering testimonials received from the great luminaries that adorn the Bench and Bar throughout the length and breadth of the Union. The Author can only express the hope that his work will not dishonor their commendations.
The plan adopted in this Digest, though now first applied to the Laws of the Federal Government, is not a novel one; it is that which has been in familiar use, in nearly every State of the Union, as applicable to their local laws; and the general approbation which it has received, is the best evidence of its superior advantages, for facility of reference, over the chronological system.
Mr. Ingersoll's Digest, it is true, was alphabetically arranged, but a glance at it will suffice to show the many points in which it differs from the present work. Gordon's Digest is also an analytical one, but not alphabetically arranged, nor does it give the Legislation of Congress in the words of the Statute Book; it is rather a compilation than a Digest. Besides these two works, we have Dunlop's Digest, arranged strictly on the chronological system, and with notes, which, however, are confined to the decisions of the Supreme Court of the United States. This, it is manifest, must leave the interpretation of the Acts of Congress very imperfect, inasmuch as questions arising on the construction of statutes seldom reach that high tribunal, but are constantly occurring in the Circuit and District Courts.
The Author has, in the present work, attempted to combine the excellences of all these writers, and, at the same time, to avoid their defects. The text is given in the words of the Statute Book. The matter is arranged alphabetically and analytically. And the Notes include the decisions of all the Courts, both State and Federal, in which the construction of the Statute Law of the United States has been the subject of adjudication, as well as those of the Heads of the Executive Departinents. He submits the result of his labors to his professional brethren throughout the Union, with the earnest hope that they may find it worthy of their approbation.
F. C. BRIGHTLY. PHILADELPHIA, 1 January 1858.
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