Magazine article Information Management

New Database Reveals Details of State's Earliest Court Cases

Magazine article Information Management

New Database Reveals Details of State's Earliest Court Cases

Article excerpt

Famed explorer Meriwether Lewis died with outstanding debts. Missouri's first senator and famed painter Thomas Hart Benton was sued for libel. And scores of other lesser-known Missourians were embroil in land disputes divorces, and other court cases. Legal details about the sordid lives of famous "and not-so-famous Missourians are now available online.

About 7,000 legal cases heard by Missouri's highest court from 1783 to 1871 are available on the Missouri secretory of state's Web site, www.sos.mo.gov/archives/judiciary/supremecourt. The site allows academics, family historians, and the curious to trace court cases by searching for a person's name, the year a case occurred, and the general subject. The search provides a brief summary and directs searchers to the exact location where the actual court papers, containing the rest of the details, are kept at the Missouri State Archives in Jefferson City.

Some cases are in French or Spanish because the database indudes court cases from the days before Missouri became a state in 1821. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.