United States v. Miller
307 U.S. 174 (1939)

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U.S. Supreme Court

United States v. Miller, 307 U.S. 174 (1939)

United States v. Miller

No. 696

Argued March 30, 1939

Decided May 15, 1939

307 U.S. 174

Syllabus

The National Firearms Act, as applied to one indicted for transporting in interstate commerce a 12-gauge shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches long without having registered it and without having in his possession a stamp-affixed written order for it, as required by the Act, held:

1. Not unconstitutional as an invasion of the reserved powers of the States. Citing Sonzinsky v. United States,300 U. S. 506, and Narcotic Act cases. P. 307 U. S. 177.

2. Not violative of the Second Amendment of the Federal Constitution. P. 307 U. S. 178.

The Court cannot take judicial notice that a shotgun having a barrel less than 18 inches long has today any reasonable relation to the preservation or efficiency of a well regulated militia, and therefore cannot say that the Second Amendment guarantees to the citizen the right to keep and bear such a weapon.

26 F.Supp. 1002, reversed.

APPEAL under the Criminal Appeals Act from a judgment sustaining a demurrer to an indictment for violation of the National Firearms Act.

Page 307 U. S. 175

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Primary Holding

Only weapons that have a reasonable relationship to the effectiveness of a well-regulated militia under the Second Amendment are free from government regulation.