Court History and Purpose

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Court History and Purpose

CJA/224
June 3rd, 2012

Court History and Purpose

The court system in America is nothing short of new. In fact, the court system dates back to the early 1600’s with the first colonies in Jamestown. The early settlers may have not known it then but the start of the court system in Jamestown was very important in determining our courts today. In our current dual court system model, this was decided long ago by the settlers, and this model has survived centuries. All though we are seeing a trend in most recent years where the states may have less rights then federals, the fact of the matter remains the same in that they are still considered two separate entities. Even today, state courts do not hear cases involving alleged violations of federal law, nor do federal courts get involved in deciding issues of state law unless there is a conflict between local or state statutes (Schmalleger, p. 311, 2009). We see the first court system in Jamestown around the early 1600’s. What the colonies establish at that time was a general court system; it was made up of 118 officials who must be elected and 18 assistants. This early system served as a model for county courts which were created about 10 years after the general court system was made. When the county courts were then establish, the general court was moved up into a higher authority and that was how the dual court systems were created. As years passed, the courts became more structured and modernized. Between the years of the first inception of the court system to 1776 all of the American colonies had established fully functional court systems (Schmalleger, p. 313, 2009). It was in 1789 that there was a gathering with congress to decide on how the United States would rule as a whole. On March 4th of 1789, it was established that the Supreme Court would now be the high court for the nation. In wasn’t until 1789 when congress gathered to discuss a judicial...
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