Skip to content
Cart

Your Cart

×

You have 0 items in your cart.

Register Sign in Wishlist
Murder in the Shenandoah

Murder in the Shenandoah
Making Law Sovereign in Revolutionary Virginia

£39.99

Part of Studies in Legal History

  • Publication planned for: February 2019
  • availability: Not yet published - available from February 2019
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9781108421782

£ 39.99
Hardback

Pre-order Add to wishlist

Looking for an inspection copy?

This title is not currently available on inspection

Description
Product filter button
Description
Contents
Resources
Courses
About the Authors
  • On July 4, 1791, the fifteenth anniversary of American Independence, John Crane, a descendant of prominent Virginian families, killed his neighbor's harvest worker. Murder in the Shenandoah traces the story of this early murder case as it entangled powerful Virginians and addressed the question that everyone in the state was heatedly debating: what would it mean to have equality before the law - and a world where 'law is king'? By retelling the story of the case, called Commonwealth v. Crane, through the eyes of its witnesses, families, fighters, victims, judges, and juries, Jessica K. Lowe reveals how revolutionary debates about justice gripped the new nation, transforming ideas about law, punishment, and popular government.

    • Argues for the importance of the lived experience of the law
    • Demonstrates quickly changing ideas at the time of the American founding about what it meant to establish law in a republic
    • Shifts the emphasis of Virginian history to the upper Shenandoah Valley, in what is now West Virginia
    Read more

    Reviews & endorsements

    Advance praise: 'In Murder in the Shenandoah, Jessica K. Lowe deftly investigates a deadly brawl to illuminate the legal culture of the new nation's most influential state, shortly after the American Revolution. Filled with plot twists, surprising revelations, colorful characters, and rich insights, this book will reward anyone interested in the roots of American criminal law.' Alan Taylor, author of American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750–1804

    Advance praise: 'Elegantly written and copiously sourced, Jessica K. Lowe's book is a must-read for specialists and students alike. Lowe upends the accepted notion that southerners went outside the law to resolve conflicts because of the culture of honor that was inextricably embedded in slavery. She uses criminal law to open a window into social change in postrevolutionary Virginia and to set the stage for antebellum-era conflicts in imaginative and unexpected ways.' Victoria Saker Woeste, American Bar Foundation

    Advance praise: 'Jessica K. Lowe's beautifully crafted account of murder and justice powerfully illuminates the reconstruction of criminal law in the early American republic. Lowe skillfully turns the story of a single Virginia killing into a compelling meditation on how people, high and low, struggled over the meaning of equality and the rule of law in the aftermath of revolution. A formidable piece of scholarship, Murder in the Shenandoah is also a gem of historical narration and analysis, at once tough-minded and humane.' Sean Wilentz, author of The Rise of American Democracy: Jefferson to Lincoln

    Advance praise: 'Professor Lowe has produced a volume that is both a murder mystery and a mini-treatise on the history of criminal law in colonial Virginia. Hard-nosed legal history has seldom been presented in such fascinating, readable form. Behind the legal story is an equally important story of social change in early Virginia. Lowe knows her Virginia law, and applies to it the questions of a modern historical sensibility. Readers will be surprised and intrigued by this admirable volume.' Stanley Katz, Princeton University Center for Arts and Cultural Policy Studies

    Advance praise: 'In Jessica K. Lowe's poetic telling of a murder trial in the Shenandoah Valley on Independence Day in 1791, we see how issues of class, violence, and the rule of law came together to lead to the execution of a Virginia patrician. Lowe's beautifully written book shows the law in motion. Wage workers, slaves, jurors, and the legal and planter elite all cross her stage as the values of democracy made a new American law.' Alfred L. Brophy, author of University, Court, and Slave: Proslavery Thought in Colleges and Courts and the Coming of Civil War

    See more reviews

    Customer reviews

    Not yet reviewed

    Be the first to review

    Review was not posted due to profanity

    ×

    , create a review

    (If you're not , sign out)

    Please enter the right captcha value
    Please enter a star rating.
    Your review must be a minimum of 12 words.

    How do you rate this item?

    ×

    Product details

    • Publication planned for: February 2019
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9781108421782
    • dimensions: 228 x 152 mm
    • contains: 10 b/w illus. 1 table
    • availability: Not yet published - available from February 2019
  • Table of Contents

    Introduction
    1. The facts of the fight
    2. The making of a republican judge
    3. Examination: class, procedure, and local courts in Crane's Virginia
    4. The Bloody Code and the logic of legal reform
    5. Indictment: power shifts and power continuities in Virginia's courts
    6. Crane's trial and its 'imperfect' verdict
    7. 'That stigma on my character': judges, judicial review, and 'republican' interpretation of the laws
    8. Murder or manslaughter? Crane's special verdict at the general court
    9. Pardon request: mercy and Crane's 'lunatic fits'
    Conclusion.

  • Author

    Jessica K. Lowe, University of Virginia
    Jessica K. Lowe teaches at the University of Virginia, School of Law.

Sign In

Please sign in to access your account

Cancel

Not already registered? Create an account now. ×

Sorry, this resource is locked

Please register or sign in to request access. If you are having problems accessing these resources please email lecturers@cambridge.org

Register Sign in
Please note that this file is password protected. You will be asked to input your password on the next screen.

» Proceed

You are now leaving the Cambridge University Press website. Your eBook purchase and download will be completed by our partner www.ebooks.com. Please see the permission section of the www.ebooks.com catalogue page for details of the print & copy limits on our eBooks.

Continue ×

Continue ×

Continue ×

Find content that relates to you

This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Read more Close

Are you sure you want to delete your account?

This cannot be undone.

Cancel

Thank you for your feedback which will help us improve our service.

If you requested a response, we will make sure to get back to you shortly.

×
Please fill in the required fields in your feedback submission.
×