Neves v. Scott,
54 U.S. 268 (1851)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Neves v. Scott, 54 U.S. 13 How. 268 268 (1851)

Neves v. Scott

54 U.S. (13 How.) 268


The courts of the United States, under the Constitution and laws, have equity jurisdiction. Unless the general principles of equity have been modified by the laws or usages of a particular state, those general principles will be carried out everywhere in the same manner, and equity jurisprudence be the same when administered by the courts of the United States in all the states.

Hence the decision of a state court in a case which involved only the general principles of equity and was not controlled by local law or usage is not binding as authority upon this Court.

In the case of Neves v. Scott, 9 How. 196, this Court decided two points -- one, that volunteers could, in that case, claim the interference of chancery to enforce the marriage articles in question, and the other that the articles constituted an executed trust.

The supreme court of Georgia does not agree with this Court upon the first point. Nevertheless this Court does not change its decision.

Moreover the second point upon which this Court rested the case does not appear to have been brought before the Supreme Court of Georgia, and of course it expressed no opinion upon the point.

This case was argued at December term, 1849, and is reported in 50 U. S. 9 How. 196. It being suggested afterwards that, at the time when the case was argued and decided, Richard Rowell, the principal defendant, was dead, the judgment was stricken out and the cause argued again.

Page 54 U. S. 270

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