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Case involving President Harrison to be performed

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Benjamin Harrison Day will be celebrated as part of the Indiana Supreme Court's Courts in the Classroom program with two historical depictions of the Ex-Parte Milligan case on Tuesday at the Indiana Statehouse at 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

The event is targeted to students who participate by reading definitions of various legal terms and biographies of the key players, but some seating is available to the public. The event will also be webcast at 10 a.m. and again at 12:30 p.m.

Milligan involved a Fort Wayne attorney, Lambdin P. Milligan, who was convicted of treason and sentenced to death by a military tribunal in 1864 for his actions against the Civil War. The U.S. Supreme Court ultimately overturned the tribunal's decision in 1866 on the grounds that the defendant was a civilian and should not have been tried in a military tribunal.

In 1877, in a civil case in federal court in Indianapolis, Milligan sued Oliver P. Morton, governor of Indiana during the Civil War; Alvin P. Hovey, the military commander and head of the tribunal; and General Ben Spooner, another high-ranking Union officer. Milligan was seeking damages for time he served in prison and for the time it took him to clear his name following the tribunal.

Harrison, who was elected president in 1888, represented Morton at the suggestion of President Ulysses S. Grant.

The program includes explanations and re-enactments of parts of the military tribunal, the Supreme Court case, and the civil case. The President Benjamin Harrison Home is also involved with the event.

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  1. I just wanted to point out that Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner, Senator Feinstein, former Senate majority leader Bill Frist, and former attorney general John Ashcroft are responsible for this rubbish. We need to keep a eye on these corrupt, arrogant, and incompetent fools.

  2. Well I guess our politicians have decided to give these idiot federal prosecutors unlimited power. Now if I guy bounces a fifty-dollar check, the U.S. attorney can intentionally wait for twenty-five years or so and have the check swabbed for DNA and file charges. These power hungry federal prosecutors now have unlimited power to mess with people. we can thank Wisconsin's Jim Sensenbrenner and Diane Feinstein, John Achcroft and Bill Frist for this one. Way to go, idiots.

  3. I wonder if the USSR had electronic voting machines that changed the ballot after it was cast? Oh well, at least we have a free media serving as vicious watchdog and exposing all of the rot in the system! (Insert rimshot)

  4. Jose, you are assuming those in power do not wish to be totalitarian. My experience has convinced me otherwise. Constitutionalists are nearly as rare as hens teeth among the powerbrokers "managing" us for The Glorious State. Oh, and your point is dead on, el correcta mundo. Keep the Founders’ (1791 & 1851) vision alive, my friend, even if most all others, and especially the ruling junta, chase only power and money (i.e. mammon)

  5. Hypocrisy in high places, absolute immunity handed out like Halloween treats (it is the stuff of which tyranny is made) and the belief that government agents are above the constitutions and cannot be held responsible for mere citizen is killing, perhaps has killed, The Republic. And yet those same power drunk statists just reel on down the hallway toward bureaucratic fascism.

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