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Entered according to Act of Congress, in the year 1867,
BY ROBERT CLARKE & CO., In the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States for the
Southern District of Ohio.
This volume contains a selection of cases adjudicated by the Superior Court of Cincinnati, from its organization, in May, 1854, to January, 1858, excluding, with a single exception, all cases, prior to April, 1856, that have been heretofore reported in Handy's volume of Reports.
The preparation of this publication was originally undertaken by Hon. Stanley Matthews, prior to the resignation of his seat on the bench of the Superior Court, in 1865; who, after devoting much labor and research, in the selection and preparation of cases for report, both while on the bench and at the bar, was compelled to surrender the task, by reason of its too great interference with his professional practice. The further preparation and labor of this work has since devolved upon another, who has realized the confusion that would necessarily meet a reporter, when called upon, after so long an interval, to examine the accumulated manuscript of years, furnished by the several members of a court whose diligence in reducing their decisions to writing was equalled only by the judicial ability and strength therein displayed.
I shall be content to know that my services have been of aid to the bar.
SUPERIOR COURT OF CINCINNATI..
HON. WM. Y. GHOLSON,
By the provisions of the act passed April 7, 1854, entitled. “An Act to establish the Superior Court of Cincinnati,” the first election of judges was held on the first Monday of May of that year; and in pursuance of the classification by lot, as provided in said law, the Hon. W. Y. Gholson was commissioned for a term of five years, the Hon. O. M. Spencer for a term of four years, and the Hon. Bellamy Storer for a term of three years.
At the expiration of the term of the Hon. Bellamy Storer, in 1857, he was re-elected for a further term of five years. The Hon. O. M. Spencer was also re-elected, in 1858, for a further term of five years, but a vacancy occurred by the calamity of his death in April, 1861.
This volume contains selections from the opinions of the three judges, in special and general term, who composed the Bench of the Superior Court during the first five years of its organization. Since then, Judge Gholson has served a term on the Supreme Bench; Judge Spencer has deceased, and Judge Storer is still a member of the Court.
Judge Spencer died in 1861, before he had served out his second term, having endured for more than a year a distressing malady, which ended in paralysis. It would not be just to his memory, that this volume should appear without a fitting tribute to his eminent ability and great legal acquirements. He loved the law as a science, and profoundly felt its responsibilities. His mind clearly perceived his duty, and his heart tempered justice with the purest equity. Never impulsive or demonstrative, he yet possessed large sympathies which ever controlled his opinions, and gave the assurance to his brethren, that he felt, as well as thought. His perceptions of right were intuitive; and in all the deliberations with his colleagues, he sought to reach a result his conscience could approve. Mere expediency, nor the power of precedent, ever controlled his decisions, nor yet the approbation nor censure of the profession, when stern duty claimed his bold utterance for the truth. The loss of such a man can not be properly estimated, yet the example of judicial integrity, impartiality, and gentle courtesy he so beautifully exhibited in his life, is still fresh in the remembrance of his legal friends. One of his colleagues who is still permitted to hold a seat on the Bench, who knew him in his youth, in his manhood and more mature years, who knew him but to love him, who was with him in the hour of his departure, and felt the last earthly pressure of his hand, indulges the abiding hope that he is now in the presence of that just Judge whose will, in the administration of human law, our departed friend strove so conscientiously to obey.