Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Jamiacan Reporter - legal cases 1774-1787

The Harvard Law School Library has recently digitized its copy of Notes of cases adjudged in Jamaica, May 1774 to Dec. 1787 (Edinburgh : Printed by Adam Neill and company, 1794). The Harvard Law School Library purchased this folio volume of 18th century law reports in 1903; it is one of only a few known copies.

These reports of high court cases are based on “the very full notes of every case that came before” John Grant, a native of Inverness-shire (Scotland), and chief justice of Jamaica’s Supreme Court from 1783-1790. Colleagues had encouraged Grant to publish his notes for their use at court, and after retiring to Edinburgh, Grant began to revise his notebook with that goal in mind. Grant died on March 29, 1793, leaving three quarters of his notes unprinted. The task was picked up and continued by friends and colleagues who saw the work through the press; the volume was published in 1794. It is rich in bibliographical references and footnotes and in this copy, an early (and unknown) reader has made occasional marginal annotations.

Among cases included are a number concerned with inheritance and wills, and the volume is a useful source of both legal and social history.

More details are available at:

And the digital copy is at:

No comments: