The Treason Trial of Aaron Burr

The Treason Trial of Aaron Burr : Law, Politics, and the Character Wars of the New Nation

4.17 (17 ratings by Goodreads)
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Description

The Burr treason trial, one of the greatest criminal trials in American history, was significant for several reasons. The legal proceedings lasted seven months and featured some of the nation's best lawyers. It also pitted President Thomas Jefferson (who declared Burr guilty without the benefit of a trial and who masterminded the prosecution), Chief Justice John Marshall (who sat as a trial judge in the federal circuit court in Richmond) and former Vice President Aaron Burr (who was accused of planning to separate the western states from the Union) against each other. At issue, in addition to the life of Aaron Burr, were the rights of criminal defendants, the constitutional definition of treason and the meaning of separation of powers in the Constitution. Capturing the sheer drama of the long trial, Kent Newmyer's book sheds new light on the chaotic process by which lawyers, judges and politicians fashioned law for the new nation.show more

Product details

  • Electronic book text
  • CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Cambridge University Press (Virtual Publishing)
  • Cambridge, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 12 b/w illus. 1 map
  • 1139135481
  • 9781139135481

Review quote

'The noted constitutional scholar R. Kent Newmyer's latest book illumines the ways 'law and politics were inseparably connected' in the 1807 treason trial of former vice president Aaron Burr, who was accused of attempting to take portions of the United States for his own ... Throughout the book Newmyer writes with authority, both relying on the words of the participants and drawing on his obvious mastery of the secondary literature on these three larger than life personalities.' Ronald L. Hatzenbuehler, Journal of American History '... a fine addition to the Burr trial bookshelf.' Peter Charles Hoffer, The Journal of Southern History '... a skilled and detailed recounting of Burr's trial, [this book] reveals a host of legal and political implications bound up in the trial and its outcome, and it is an entertainingly good read as well.' Joanne B. Freeman, Law and History Reviewshow more

Table of contents

1. Jefferson and Burr on the road to Richmond; 2. Jefferson and Marshall square off; 3. Legal theater in Richmond: Aaron Burr front and center; 4. Treason law for America: the lawyers grapple; 5. Judging the judge.show more

Rating details

17 ratings
4.17 out of 5 stars
5 41% (7)
4 47% (8)
3 6% (1)
2 0% (0)
1 6% (1)
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