ginia, to which the following objections have been made:

1st. That there is a defect of parties. Although all the persons in interest are made defendants to the bill, yet none of them had appeared to it except the appellant, on whose answer, and the proofs in the cause, the decree was made.

2d. Another objection is, that there was competent relief at law against the usurious contract stated in the bill; but as no defence of this kind was there set up, a Court of Chancery ought not to have interfered, especially after judgment had been obtained on the bills, and even on the prison bounds bonds, which were taken on the execution which had issued on those judgments.

3d. It is also contended, that there was no usury in any of the contracts between the appellant and Carter Beverley, and that the sale of the negroes under the deed of trust was fair, and in strict pursuance of the authority vested in the trustee.

4th, and lastly: Admitting the usury, and a frand in the sale, it is insisted that the respondent, being an entire stranger to these transactions, had no right to call the appellant to account, or to any relief as against him.

The Court has had under its consideration all these objections ; but will now give its opinion only on the first of them. We are all satisfied, that when this decree was pronounced, the case was not prepared for a final hearing. The bills, which had been drawn by P. R. Beverley, having passed by Marshall into the hands of third persons, who had


obtained judgments on them, and it being a principal Marshall object of the suit to enjoin further proceedings on

then, the parties in whose favour they were renderBeverley.

ed, ought not only to have been made defendants, but a perpetual injunction ought not to have been decreed until their answers were filed. It was not enough in their absence that the complainant should state, and the defendant admit, that the latter had paid these judgments, and was now the only person interested in them. This might be done by collusion, and although that may not be the case here, it is not the course of a Court of Equity, to make a decree which is to operate directly upon the parties in interest, as the perpetual injunction does here, without affording them an opportunity of being heard. For this error, the decree must be reversed, and the cause remanded for further proceedings.

Decree reversed.

DECREE. This cause came on to be heard on the transcript of the record of the Circuit Court, for the district of Virginia, and was argued by counsel. On consideration whereof, it is the opinion of this Court, that the said Circuit Court erred in perpetually enjoining the proceedings on the judgments obtained against the respondent, Peter R. Beverley, and the appellant, Horace Marshall, because the bills of exchange, which had been drawn by the said Peter R. Beverley, had passed into the hands of third persons, by whom the said judgments had been obtained, and before the answers of such creditors, who had been made defendants to said bill of complaint, had come




in. It is therefore DECREED and ORDERED, that the decree of the said Circuit Court in this case be, and the same is hereby, reversed and annulled. And it is further ordered, that the said cause be remanded to the said Circuit Court for further proceedings to be had therein according to law.




Congress has authority to impose a direct tax on the district of Co

lumbia, in proportion to the census directed to be taken by the

eonstitution. The power of Congress to levy and collect laxes, duties, imposts and

excises, is co-extensive with the territory of the United States. The power of Congress to exercise exclusive jurisdiction in all cases

whatsoever within the district of Columbia, includes the power of taxing it.

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182 353

THIS case, which was an action of trespass March 7th. 182 23 brought in the Circuit Court for the district of Columbia, to try the right of Congress to impose a direct tax on that district, and in which the Court below gave judgment for the defendant, was argued by Mr. Jones for the plaintiff, and by the Attorney General for the defendant.

Mr. Chief Justice MARSHALL delivered the opi- March 10th. nion of the Court. This case presents to the consideration of the Court a single question. It is this:



Has Congress a right to impose a direct tax on the

District of Columbia ? Loughborough The counsel who maintains the negative has con

tended, that Congress must be considered in two distinct characters. In one character as legislating for the States; in the other, as a local legislature for the district. In the latter character, it is admitted, the power of levying direct taxes may be exercised ; but, it is contended, for district purposes only, in like manner as the legislature of a State may tax the

people of a State for State purposes.

Without inquiring at present into the soundness of this distinction, its possible influence on the application in this district of the first article of the constitution, and of several of the amendments, may not be altogether unworthy of consideration. It will readily suggest itself to the gentlemen who press this argument, that those articles which, in general terms, restrain the power of Congress, may be applied to the laws enacted by that body for the district, if it be considered as governing the district in its character as the national legislature, with less difficulty than if it be considered a mere local legislature.

But we deem it unnecessary to pursue this investigation, because we think the right of Congress to tax the district does not depend solely on the grant of

exclusive legislation. The power of The 8th section of the 1st article gives to Conlazerinde gress the “ power to lay and collect taxes, duties, e distends to imposts and excises,” for the purposes thereinafter Columbia, and mentioned. This grant is general, without limitarice of the W. tion as to place. It, consequently, extends to all

Congress to


V. Blake.

places over which the government extends. If this could be doubted, the doubt is removed by the sub

Loughbosequent words which modify the grant. These rough words are, “but all duties, imposts, and excises, shall be uniform throughout the United States.” It will not be contended, that the modification of the power extends to places to which the power itself does not extend. The power then to lay and collect duties, imposts, and excises, may be exercised, and must be exercised throughout the United States. Does this term designate the whole, or any particulas portion of the American empire ? Certainly this question can admit of but one answer. It is the name given to our great republic, which is composed of States and territories. The district of Columbia, or the territory west of the Missouri, is not less within the United States, than Maryland or Pennsylvania ; and it is not less necessary, on the principles of our constitution, that uniformity in the imposition of imposts, duties, and excises, should be observed in the one, than in the other. Since, then, the power to lay and collect taxes, which includes direct taxes, is obviously co-extensive with the power to lay and collect duties, imposts and excises, and since the latter extends throughout the United States, it follows, that the power to impose direct taxes also The provision extends throughout the United States.

The extent of the grant being ascertained, how States, accorilfar is it abridged by any part of the constitution ?

The 20th section of the first article declares, that certained by a

representatives and direct taxes shall be appor- not intended to tioned among the several States which may be in- power of time

es shall be apo portioned among the several

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ing to their res spective numbers, to be as.

taxes to States only.

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