Guide to the Harry M. Johnston Law Journal Collection (1891 – 1892) – Contents

View the full guide to this collection


One (1) Journal

Series Scope and Content Summary:

This series consists of one (1) approx. 12×7” journal featuring a black, yellow, and red design of swirls that resembles marbled paper and the name “H.M. Johnston” in gold ink on the cover. The journal is in fair condition considering its age—the pages are mostly intact and suffering from little to no yellowing, though there is some cracking on the edges. The binding is in the worst condition, though the front and back covers are intact, the front cover is coming loose from the spine. Inside this journal are 192 pages containing notes on court cases in Santa Cruz during the years 1891-1892 made by attorney Harry M. Johnston. Notes include information such as plaintiff and defendant, name of the attorney for the defendant, notes on complaints filed, jury verdicts, and the nature of the case such as “nature of divorce habitual intemperance” (Stewart vs. Stewart pg. 143) and “petition to see children and modify order of the court” (Short v. Short pg. 151). Occasionally newspaper clippings about the court cases are included pasted with the notes. Clippings appear for about one half of the cases in the book which are alphabetized via convenient tabs in the journal for each letter in the alphabet. Some court cases of particular interest include Stewart vs. Stewart that concerned a suit for a divorce between Elizabeth Stewart and Dr. John Alex Stewart. The attorney for the defended was Joseph Skirm whose journals appear in the Joseph Skirm Journals Collection. This court case includes notes on the court proceeding as well as four pages of newspaper clippings that contain details of the very fascinating case and how Elizabeth Stewart became estranged from her husband and how she suspected her husband’s “sister” was actually a woman he had wished to marry. Some other court cases include: People vs. Villa who was convicted of assault with a deadly weapon but later discharged, and newspaper clippings and notes on an interesting case involving a parasitical specialist of tape worms regarding wages and seizure of his stock (Carl Pantzer vs. L.M. Slocum pg. 129), People vs.[ Francisco] Robles who claimed he was acquitted of perjury charges, than was convicted again—it was the first conviction for perjury that took place in the county according to newspaper clippings. There are many other interesting notes on court cases and newspaper clipping in this journal. Please handle the journal with care. Date range: 1890-1892

Box ID#: