EX PARTE ZELLNER, 76 U. S. 244 (1869)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Ex Parte Zellner, 76 U.S. 9 Wall. 244 244 (1869)

Ex Parte Zellner

76 U.S. (9 Wall.) 244


Where an act of Congress gives, as part of the general system of organization of a court, an appeal from any final judgment or decree which may hereafter be rendered by it, an appeal lies from a judgment rendered under an act which gives the court jurisdiction to pass in the usual way, and not by any special proceedings, upon a class of cases additional to those of which it already had jurisdiction, even though nothing be said in such act about an appeal.

Zellner filed his petition in this Court and moved for a mandamus to the Court of Claims to compel them to allow an appeal from a decree which that court had made against him. The case was this. The relator was the owner of a quantity of cotton stored at Macon, Georgia. In February, 1866, a special agent of the Treasury Department seized and carried away the same, and it was afterwards shipped by another agent of that department to the City of New York and there sold by an agent of the government for $3,076, after deducting all charges and expenses. On this state of facts, the relator applied to the Court of Claims for a judgment against the government, in his favor, to this amount.

The court, on full consideration, denied the claim and dismissed the petition, whereupon he prayed an appeal from the decree of dismissal, which was refused. The single question presented was whether or not the relator was entitled to an appeal. And this depended upon the construction to be given to certain statutes, as follows:

An act of 24 February, 1855, [Footnote 1] conferred jurisdiction upon the Court of Claims "to hear and determine all claims founded upon any regulation of an executive department, or upon any contract, express or implied, with the government," "and also all claims which may be referred to said court by either house of Congress." An act, of 3 March, 1863, [Footnote 2] amending the former act, conferred jurisdiction, in addition to the above cases,

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