Law for the Elephant: Property & Social Behavior on the Overland Trail

By: John Phillip Reid

Price: $15.00

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For most of their journey, travelers on the overland trail to California in the 1840s and 1850s were beyond the reach of the law and its enforcers, the police and the courts. Yet, not only did the law play a large role in life on the trail, it was a law hardly distinguishable from the one the emigrants had left behind. John Phillip Reid demonstrates how seriously overlanders regarded the rights of property and personal ownership when they went west as he explores their diaries, letters, and memoirs, giving an unusually rich and vivid picture of life on the overland trail.

Title: Law for the Elephant: Property & Social Behavior on the Overland Trail

Author: John Phillip Reid

Illustrator: Reg. Price: $15.00

Categories: Law & Legal History, Travel & Transportation,

Publisher: Huntington Library: 1996

ISBN Number: 0873281640

ISBN Number 13: 9780873281645

Binding: Paperback

Book Details: 448 pages, 6 x 9, 1 map, 7 line illustrations, Huntington Library

Seller ID: 281640

Description: For most of their journey, travelers on the overland trail to California in the 1840s and 1850s were beyond the reach of the law and its enforcers, the police and the courts. Yet, not only did the law play a large role in life on the trail, it was a law hardly distinguishable from the one the emigrants had left behind. John Phillip Reid demonstrates how seriously overlanders regarded the rights of property and personal ownership when they went west as he explores their diaries, letters, and memoirs, giving an unusually rich and vivid picture of life on the overland trail.

About Author
John Phillip Reid, Russell D. Niles Professor of Law at New York University School of Law, is the author of Policing the Elephant, Chief Justice: The Judicial World of Charles Doe and A Law of Blood: The Primitive Law of the Cherokee Nation, among many other works.

Reviews
"Reid's research makes it clear from a cultural, political, and legal standpoint that respect for property and law was deep-seated in Americans. . . . A masterful example of the application of behavioral perspectives and legal analysis to a historical problem."--Reviews in American History
"Law for the Elephantis a significant and timely contribution to the maturing scholarship of American legal history. Fortunately, for the legal historians and scholars of the American frontier, John Reid, who must have 'seen the Elephant' more than once in blazing his own overland trail in quest of the sources for this book, proved as disciplined and imaginative as the emigrants he studies."--Kermit L. Hall, Detroit College of Law Review

"One need not be a lawyer, a student of the law, or a legal historian to enjoy this book, for its style and appeal are broad. . . . highly recommended and belongs on the 'must read' list for anyone interested in the westward movement."--Utah Historical Quarterly

"Reid has been incredibly imaginative in discovering the sources for law on the overland trail, and his pioneering work is likely to open up an entirely new field in the study of the American legal experience. This is a splendid and marvelously readable book."--Stanley N. Katz, Princeton University