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People Vs. Croswell
Transcript of People Vs. Croswell
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Who was Harry Croswell...
And why should we care?
Croswell moved to Hudson, New York at age 22 in 1801.
He takes a job with the B.A.C.R (Balance and Colombian Repository)
Meanwhile, Charles Holt comes to Hudson and joins a newspaper called "The Bee"
"The B.A.C.R" was a Federalist newspaper and it supported John Adams. "The Bee" was a Democratic newspaper and it supported Thomas Jefferson
Croswell asks to start a new newspaper called "The Wasp" for the purpose of attacking Holt, Jefferson and others
When he writes for "The Wasp" he uses a fake name Robert Rusticoat
Ambrose Spencer, a New York attorney general, and a former Federalist, goes to the grand jury about Croswell's writing
Grand jury indicts
1803 Croswell arrested
Trial begins. He is represented free of charge by some prominent lawyers Croswell pleads not guilty, but is convicted anyway
1805 Hamilton posted a new law which states that you can't be convicted of libel against somebody if what you said about them was true
Appeal begins on February 13th
Croswell appeals, he is represented by Alexander Hamilton (He was one of the founding fathers)
Croswell never sentenced
Holt writes negatively about John Adams and other politicians of the same party
The Bee and the Wasp battle it out for several months
"Amendment I (Speech and Press): People v. Croswell." Amendment I (Speech and Press): People v. Croswell. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
"A Biography of Alexander Hamilton (1755-1804)." The Quasi War with Adams (1789-1800). N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
"Freedom of the Press." Bill of Rights Institute Freedom of the Press Comments. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
"The People of New York vs. Croswell (1804) - Freedom of the Press." Freedom of the Press. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
"The Posterity Project: The Sedition Act: Harry Croswell." The Posterity Project: The Sedition Act: Harry Croswell. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.
"Trial of Harry Croswell." Trial of Harry Croswell. N.p., n.d. Web. 12 Nov. 2013.