N.J. Constitutional Convention: Vol. 4, Page 107
proved to be enormous, you can see how important it is after all to have a simple organization whereby you can take the original papers from one court and deposit them in the other, and have things run along smoothly - not under a separate system of courts with separate branches, but in a single court.
The thing that I suppose will give you most trouble in New Jersey, the thing that is perhaps most necessary to speak about, is this matter of a separate Court of Chancery. I taught equity for a great many years, and the New Jersey Equity Reports were a joy forever to a teacher of equity. Johnson's Chancery, of New York, and the New Jersey Equity Reports were the reports to which a teacher of equity has always turned. I should feel very badly if I thought that any judicial organization which you might work out here would result in any diminution of that splendid development of equity that is going on here, because after all, equity is the most important part of the Anglo-American system of administering justice. It is increasingly important today; but after all, I don't believe it is necessary to have a separate, independent court of equity to achieve that. It is not only possible, but I think it is necessary in any unified judicial organization, to permit of divisions in the courts.
In England, of course, they have in the high courts of justice the King's Bench Division, the Chancery Division and the Probate and Divorce Divisions; but those are not so hard and fast that a case has got inevitably to stick in one of those divisions and be judged from the standpoint of that one division only. Not only is it perfectly possible to just simply take a case over by taking the papers from one division to another, but it is perfectly possible, if in one division the court feels that they need the help of some judge who has especially developed his power and talent more than another, to have him sit with them. It is a simple matter. The Lord Chancellor will designate Mr. Justice so and so to sit, not in his division but in the other court for the purpose of some particular situation where that is required.
I noticed the other day, in looking for something in your New Jersey Equity Reports, that in a case where a declaratory judgment was required, the Court of Chancery did not feel authorized to do what really was required there - to make a pronouncement so that the people would know what their rights were - because the questions were questions of law and not pertinent to the jurisdiction of the court of equity. Well, it is unfortunate that that kind of thing has to happen. The thing to do was to send over for the justice from the division of the courts that has to do with questions of law, whose next duty would be to come and sit with the justice or justices who have this matter before them. In that way, without having to pass
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