Detroit: Advertiser and Free Press, 1851. , 175, [1 errata], 283, [1 blank], 399, , 8 pp. Bound in legal buckram, gilt-stamped spine title and call number. Light scattered spotting, rubberstamp on title and half title. Half title inscription to Edward Everett from J. Eliot Thayer. Good+.
Fitch was allegedly the chief conspirator in a plot to sabotage the Michigan Central Railroad. William Seward participated prominently in the defense of his case.
"This tragicomedy resulted largely from the killing by the newly built and unfenced Michigan Central Railroad in the 1840s of cattle and other livestock straying onto its right of way, and refusal by the railroad to pay farmers the full value for this livestock. There developed a fierce feud between the operators of the railroad and the farmers and others living along its line, particularly in Jackson County, where there was much sabotage against the railroad. The railroad, instead of trying to mitigate the controversy, acted in a high-handed manner" [Greenly] and brought suit after the burning of its freight house in Detroit. Fitch and others, arrested for the crime, were denied bail; he died in jail during his trial, which is reported here in full, with long sections devoted to the defendants' testimony and the arguments of counsel.
Greenly 93. Marke 986. Cohen 12144. Item #22553