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United States Statutes at Large/Volume 3/14th Congress/1st Session/Chapter 39

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April 2, 1816.
Chap. XXXIX.—An Act to limit the right of appeal from the Circuit Court of the United States for the District of Columbia.[1]

No appeal unless the matter in dispute is of the value of $1,000, &c.Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, That no cause shall hereafter be removed from the Circuit Court of the United States for the District of Columbia to the Supreme Court of the United States, by appeal or writ of error, unless the matter in dispute in such cause shall be of the value of one thousand dollars or upwards, exclusive of costs.

Appeals may be allowed in particular and important cases where the matter is in dispute is $100 in value on petition to a judge of the Supreme Court, &c.Sec. 2. And be it further enacted, That when any person or persons, body politic or corporate, shall think him, her, or themselves, aggrieved by any final judgment, order, or decree, of the said Circuit Court, where the matter in dispute, exclusive of costs, shall be of the value of one hundred dollars, and of less value than one thousand dollars, and shall have prayed an appeal, or shall desire to sue out a writ of error to the Supreme Court of the United States, such person or persons, body politic or corporate, may exhibit a petition, in writing, accompanied by a copy of the proceedings complained of, and an assignment of the errors relied on, to any judge of the said Supreme Court, who, if he should be of opinion that such errors, or any of them, involve questions of law of such extensive interest and operation as to render the final decision of them by the said Supreme Court desirable, may thereupon, at his discretion, and upon the terms and conditions prescribed by law, by his order, to be directed to the clerk of the county in which the proceedings shall have been had, direct such appeal to be allowed, or writ of error to be issued; which shall be done accordingly.

When appeals on petition, &c. have been directed, and the order of the judge has been filed, &c. the writ of error is to operate as a supersedeas.Sec. 3. And be it further enacted, That when any appeal or writ of error shall have been directed in the manner prescribed by the second section of this act, and the order of the judge of the Supreme Court aforesaid thereon shall have been filed in the office of the clerk of the proper county, within thirty days after the end of the term at which the judgment, order, or decree, to be affected by such writ of error or appeal, shall have been rendered or made, such writ of error or appeal shall operate as a supersedeas of all proceedings under such judgment, order, or decree.

Approved, April 2, 1816.


  1. No appeal or writ of error lies, in a criminal case, from the judgment of the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia to the Supreme court of the United States. The appellate jurisdiction given by the act of Congress, is confined to civil cases. United States v. Moore, 3 Cranch, 159; 1 Cond. Rep. 480.