Sunday, May 18, 2014

The Genesee Chief v. Fitzhugh case brief summary

The Genesee Chief v. Fitzhugh (1851) opens the lakes and the waters connecting them to the general jurisdiction of the district courts in admiralty
                      Collision on LakeOntario
                      Schooner Cuba claims that the Genesse ran foul of her and damaged her so seriously that as a result she sank with her cargo on board
                      Proceeding was in rem and in admiralty under Great Lakes Act of 1845 which extending the jurisdiction to the district courts to certain cases upon the lakes and navigable waters connecting the same
                      Question of jurisdiction and constitutionality of the Great Lakes Act because it was narrower than the Constitution contemplated
                      Law contains no regulation of commerce and it is evident from the title that Congress did not intend to exercise their power to regulate commerce
                      Goes against Thomas Jefferson with ebb and flow of tide
                      Court rejected tidal limit
                      There is clearly nothing in the ebb and flow of the tide that makes the waters peculiarly suitable for admiralty jurisdiction, nor anything in the absence of a tide that renders it unfit
                      There is commerce on the water and there need not be tide in the lake
NOTES:  the constitutional grant of admiralty jurisdiction was not limited by tidelands rule
Admiralty jurisdiction is now extended to the lakes and navigable rivers of the US

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