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Lot 323

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Signatures of 7 of 9 S.C. Justices of the Taney Court -- Uncommon!

An album page signed by 7 of 9 members of the U.S. Supreme Court, presided over by Chief Justice Roger B. Taney (1777-1864), ca. 1851-1853. Co-signed by Richard Wallach, the U.S. Marshal of the District of Columbia. Minor chipped edges, some lightly stained or with tape residue mostly found verso. A printed paper cut-out of one of the justices is adhered at lower left. Scattered reversible pencil notations at upper left. Blank verso except for "New Hampshire" written at top. Else near fine. 8.375" x 10.25." Provenance: From the famous Supreme Court collection of Scott Petersen.

This album page, entitled "Judges of the Supreme Court" at top, is signed by 7 of 9 members of the Taney Court, including Chief Justice Roger B. Taney. [The two missing signatures belong to Associate Justices James Moore Wayne (1790-1867) and John McKinley (1780-1852). By comparing the tenures of the respective Supreme Court judges to Wallach's brief term as U.S. Marshal of the District of Columbia (1849-1853), we were able to pinpoint when these signatures were most likely collected, that is, ca. 1851-1853.

Signed by, from top to bottom:

- 5th U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Roger B. Taney, signed as "R.B. Taney Chief Justice"

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice John McLean (1785-1861), signed as "John McLean Associate Justice"

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice John Catron (1786-1865), signed as "John Catron Asso. Justice"

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Peter Vivian Daniel (1784-1860), signed as "PV Daniel Asso. Justice S.C."

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Samuel Nelson (1792-1873), signed as "Samuel Nelson Ass: Justic Sup. Ct."

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Robert Cooper Grier (1794-1870), signed as "R.C. Grier Associate Just SCUS"

- U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Benjamin Robbins Curtis (1809-1874), signed as "B.R. Curtis Associate Just. S.C."

- U.S. Marshall of Washington, D.C. Richard Wallach (1816-1881), signed as "Richard Wallach / Marshal / D.C."

During the 28-year-long Taney Court, Chief Justice Taney and his fellow justices drafted 26 official decisions, including Dred Scott v. Sandford (1857). This ruling polarized the country and set the stage for the Civil War.

This item comes with a Certificate from John Reznikoff, a premier authenticator for both major 3rd party authentication services, PSA and JSA (James Spence Authentications), as well as numerous auction houses.


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