Washington: Way, 1810. 15 [1 blank] pp. Disbound, lightly tanned. Very Good.
Jean Gravier, a major landowner in New Orleans, claimed title to a river bank, known as a Batture. The Mississippi River covered it for three months of the year; during the other nine months it was dry and, from time immemorial, used by the public for its alluvium deposits and other purposes. Gravier's claim triggered litigation with the City, which refused to acknowledge his title. In 1807 the Louisiana Superior Court awarded judgment to Gravier. The unpopularity of the decision resulted in years of acrimony and further litigation, which Edward Livingston, Gravier's successor in title, carried on against the City as well as the national government.
Poydras, the first delegate to Congress from the Territory of Orleans, as it was then known, argues "against any resolution, bill, or other measure, which can have the least tendency to violate the sacred right of the public" to the Batture. Calling New Orleans "the great mart" of the Ohio and Mississippi River areas, he explains graphically that acceptance of Gravier's claims would be disastrous.
FIRST EDITION. AI 21129 . Cohen 11698. Not in Thompson, Harv. Law Cat., Marvin, Marke, Eberstadt, Decker. Item #24240