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Introduction to Rounds qui tam v. JS

Rounds qui tam v. JS
Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas, 10 February 1837
 
Rounds for the use of the State of Ohio as well as Himself v. JS
Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas, 31 October 1860
 
Historical Introduction
In February 1837, Samuel Rounds, a resident of , Ohio, initiated six separate legal actions against JS, , and four junior officers of the . In November 1836, JS and other church leaders approved a constitution to organize and govern the Kirtland Safety Society Bank, likely hoping to benefit the local economy and provide financial aid to the church. Unsure whether they would be able to receive a charter for a bank from the state legislature, they altered the original articles organizing the bank to establish instead a joint stock association called the Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company. In January 1837, this “anti-banking company” began issuing notes, signed by JS and Rigdon as officers of the society.
Rounds’s legal actions were based on an statute that granted private citizens the right to sue persons acting as officers of unauthorized banks. The penalty was $1,000, which would be divided equally between the party who brought the action and the state. The suits against the four junior officers were concluded in their favor that summer.
The lawsuits against JS and were brought to trial in October 1837, months after the closed its doors amid a nationwide financial panic. The jury decided in favor of the plaintiff in both cases, after which execution of the judgment for the Rigdon case was sought and partially satisfied. Rounds assigned his half of the judgments for both cases to , the other half of the judgments still belonging to the state of . Newell in turn assigned his portion of the judgments to and , agents of JS, for $1,600. The combination of the approximately $700 partial satisfaction of judgment and the $1,600 assignment effectively paid judgments for both cases in full.
When and paid for the judgment in 1838, they failed to make the payment part of the court record; therefore, court records indicated that only a portion of the judgment had been satisfied. The oversight allowed Newell to proceed against JS’s assets as though he had not received payment in full. He did so in 1859, petitioning the legislature to have the judgment , based on his claim that he expended personal funds to initially prosecute the cases against JS and . The legislature granted the request. In 1860, Newell sought satisfaction through the assets of JS’s estate. The legislature also authorized Newell “at his own charges and expense, in the name of the state of Ohio, to revive said judgments.”
On 29 October 1860, the probate court for , Ohio, appointed Henry Holcomb, the spouse of ’s granddaughter Emily E. Sawyer, as administrator of JS’s estate at Holcomb’s request. Two days later, the court of common pleas noted the action taken by the legislature in assigning the judgment to Newell and went on to grant Newell’s motion to revive the case against JS. On 24 September 1861, Holcomb petitioned the probate court for permission to sell real estate belonging to JS’s estate in . The court appointed three appraisers to provide the appraisal of the property, and on 18 April 1862, the and other property JS had owned were sold to . was to receive her dower interest from the sale, which amounted to $4.11, to be paid annually for the duration of her life.
 
Calendar of Documents
This calendar lists all known documents created by or for the court, whether extant or not. It does not include versions of documents created for other purposes, though those versions may be listed in footnotes. In certain cases, especially in cases concerning unpaid debts, the originating document (promissory note, invoice, etc.) is listed here. Note that documents in the calendar are grouped with their originating court. Where a version of a document was subsequently filed with another court, that version is listed under both courts.
Rounds qui tam v. JS
Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas, 10 February 1837
 
Rounds for the use of the State of Ohio as well as Himself v. JS
Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas, 31 October 1860
 
Historical Introduction
In February 1837, Samuel Rounds, a resident of , Ohio, initiated six separate legal actions against JS, , and four junior officers of the . In November 1836, JS and other church leaders approved a constitution to organize and govern the Kirtland Safety Society Bank, likely hoping to benefit the local economy and provide financial aid to the church. Unsure whether they would be able to receive a charter for a bank from the state legislature, they altered the original articles organizing the bank to establish instead a joint stock association called the Kirtland Safety Society Anti-Banking Company. In January 1837, this “anti-banking company” began issuing notes, signed by JS and Rigdon as officers of the society.
Rounds’s legal actions were based on an statute that granted private citizens the right to sue persons acting as officers of unauthorized banks. The penalty was $1,000, which would be divided equally between the party who brought the action and the state. The suits against the four junior officers were concluded in their favor that summer.
The lawsuits against JS and were brought to trial in October 1837, months after the closed its doors amid a nationwide financial panic. The jury decided in favor of the plaintiff in both cases, after which execution of the judgment for the Rigdon case was sought and partially satisfied. Rounds assigned his half of the judgments for both cases to , the other half of the judgments still belonging to the state of . Newell in turn assigned his portion of the judgments to and , agents of JS, for $1,600. The combination of the approximately $700 partial satisfaction of judgment and the $1,600 assignment effectively paid judgments for both cases in full.
When and paid for the judgment in 1838, they failed to make the payment part of the court record; therefore, court records indicated that only a portion of the judgment had been satisfied. The oversight allowed Newell to proceed against JS’s assets as though he had not received payment in full. He did so in 1859, petitioning the legislature to have the judgment , based on his claim that he expended personal funds to initially prosecute the cases against JS and . The legislature granted the request. In 1860, Newell sought satisfaction through the assets of JS’s estate. The legislature also authorized Newell “at his own charges and expense, in the name of the state of Ohio, to revive said judgments.”
On 29 October 1860, the probate court for , Ohio, appointed Henry Holcomb, the spouse of ’s granddaughter Emily E. Sawyer, as administrator of JS’s estate at Holcomb’s request. Two days later, the court of common pleas noted the action taken by the legislature in assigning the judgment to Newell and went on to grant Newell’s motion to revive the case against JS. On 24 September 1861, Holcomb petitioned the probate court for permission to sell real estate belonging to JS’s estate in . The court appointed three appraisers to provide the appraisal of the property, and on 18 April 1862, the and other property JS had owned were sold to . was to receive her dower interest from the sale, which amounted to $4.11, to be paid annually for the duration of her life.
 
Calendar of Documents
This calendar lists all known documents created by or for the court, whether extant or not. It does not include versions of documents created for other purposes, though those versions may be listed in footnotes. In certain cases, especially in cases concerning unpaid debts, the originating document (promissory note, invoice, etc.) is listed here. Note that documents in the calendar are grouped with their originating court. Where a version of a document was subsequently filed with another court, that version is listed under both courts.
 
Rounds qui tam v. JS, Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas
 
Rounds for the use of the State of Ohio as well as Himself v. JS, Geauga Co., Ohio, Court of Common Pleas