The Alicia,
74 U.S. 571 (1868)

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U.S. Supreme Court

The Alicia, 74 U.S. 7 Wall. 571 571 (1868)

The Alicia

74 U.S. (7 Wall.) 571


1. This Court cannot acquire jurisdiction of a cause through an order of a circuit court directing its transfer to this Court, though such transfer be authorized by the express provision of an act of Congress. Such provision must be regarded as an attempt, inadvertently made, to give to this Court a jurisdiction withheld by the Constitution.

Page 74 U. S. 572

2. In such a case, a notice to docket and dismiss must be denied, and this Court will certify its opinion to the circuit court for information, in order that it may proceed with the trial of the cause.

This was a motion by Mr. Ashton, Assistant Attorney General, to docket and dismiss.

It appeared from the certificate of the clerk of the Circuit Court of the United States for the Southern District of Florida, that on the 9th of January, 1863, a decree of condemnation was entered in the district court for the condemnation of the Alicia and her cargo, for violation of the blockade. From this decree an appeal was allowed, and taken to the circuit court; and on the 18th of May, 1867, an order was made in that court, on the application of the parties in interest -- there being at this time, in the circuit court, no order, judgment, or decree in the case -- for the transfer of the cause to this Court.

The application and order for transfer were made under the thirteenth section of the Act of June 30, 1864, * which enacts that prize causes, depending in the circuit courts, may be transferred, upon the application of all parties in interest, to this Court.

The appellant had not docketed the cause and filed the record within the time allowed by the rules in cases of appeals, and Mr. Ashton's motion to dismiss was made for that reason.

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