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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. What is this, the Ind Supreme Court thinking that there is a separation of powers and limited enumerated powers as delegated by a dusty old document? Such eighteen century thinking, so rare and unwanted by the elites in this modern age. Dictate to us, dictate over us, the massess are chanting! George Soros agrees. Time to change with times Ind Supreme Court, says all President Snows. Rule by executive decree is the new black.

  2. I made the same argument before a commission of the Indiana Supreme Court and then to the fedeal district and federal appellate courts. Fell flat. So very glad to read that some judges still beleive that evidentiary foundations matter.

  3. KUDOS to the Indiana Supreme Court for realizing that some bureacracies need to go to the stake. Recall what RWR said: "No government ever voluntarily reduces itself in size. Government programs, once launched, never disappear. Actually, a government bureau is the nearest thing to eternal life we'll ever see on this earth!" NOW ... what next to this rare and inspiring chopping block? Well, the Commission on Gender and Race (but not religion!?!) is way overdue. And some other Board's could be cut with a positive for State and the reputation of the Indiana judiciary.

  4. During a visit where an informant with police wears audio and video, does the video necessary have to show hand to hand transaction of money and narcotics?

  5. I will agree with that as soon as law schools stop lying to prospective students about salaries and employment opportunities in the legal profession. There is no defense to the fraudulent numbers first year salaries they post to mislead people into going to law school.

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