Viewing Humor Category (8) found:
After Judge Sherman Page's impeachment trial concluded with his acquittal in June, 1878, DeWitt Clinton Cooley, a prominent St. Paul lawyer, published a three-act play about the proceedings. It was a wicked farce. Cooley lampooned the state senate, which had styled itself "The High Court of Impeachment," Page's accusers and the St. Paul Pioneer Press, among others.
"Justice Court"--that is, the court of a justice of the peace--was a source of entertainment for early settlers. County histories often refer to amusing incidents in justice court. The following story appears in a collection of reminiscences of Frank G. O'Brien, a Minneapolis journalist, published in 1904.
This is a collection of humorous anecdotes and stories told by and about Minnesota lawyers and judges posted on the MLHP in 2008-2010.
More humorous stories and anecdotes about Minnesota lawyers and judges are posted in this article.
Trials before justices of the peace resolved many minor disputes. However, because the justices usually lacked legal training, justice court was sometimes a place of entertainment for members of the community. These courts were also a rich source of anecdotes told and retold by members of the bar. The following story appeared in the September, 1893, issue of "The Minnesota Law Journal."
In the nineteenth century, most lawyers were admitted to the bar in Minnesota either by reciprocity or by passing an oral examination administered by a district court judge or by a committee of lawyers. In 1859 or 1860, an earnest young man, Stewart Harvey, was examined before a "crowded audience, including Judge Hamlin" in the parlor of the Nicollet House. It was an elaborate hoax, vividly retold decades later by Judge William Lochren in an article on "early practice and practitioners" that appeared in Isaac Atwater's history of Minneapolis, published in 1893.
For the nineteenth century bar, justice court was a source of innumerable humorous anecdotes. This parody appeared in the January, 1895, issue of "The Minnesota Law Journal." The name of the author--identified by his initials, "H. W. W."--is not known.
In 1998 Gregory Wilmas published this humorous article on the history of the law of gardening in a local journal, "Law & Politics." It may also be viewed as a spoof on the turgid writing that appears in most contemporary law reviews.