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Citations to Old Mass Cases

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:48 am
by CS1775
From 1822-1867, the Mass SJC citations follow the old SCOTUS example and cite to the actual publisher's name, rather than the court. For example, 61 Mass. 166 is supposed to be cited to as 7 Cush. 166. See page 10 of the SJC Style Guide:

https://www.mass.gov/doc/sjc-style-manual/download

My question is, what should I do if I'm citing an old case like this (7 Cush. 166) to a reader who isn't in Massachusetts? Obviously Massachusetts courts want to see the official cite to the reporter, but I think for a reader unfamiliar with the Style Guide, the official cite might be unnecessarily confusing. There's no court name in the official cite, just the name of the reporter. There's no "Mass." in the citation.

Re: Citations to Old Mass Cases

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:55 am
by pancakes3
who are you writing for?

Re: Citations to Old Mass Cases

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:56 am
by CS1775
pancakes3 wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:55 am
who are you writing for?
A RI Federal judge. He's the "audience."

Re: Citations to Old Mass Cases

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:57 am
by Nony
Why not follow the Bluebook citation, since you’re not filing something in a Mass court? I think the SJC style guide would really govern docs filed in their jurisdiction.

Re: Citations to Old Mass Cases

Posted: Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:01 am
by CS1775
Nony wrote:
Tue Dec 03, 2019 10:57 am
Why not follow the Bluebook citation, since you’re not filing something in a Mass court? I think the SJC style guide would really govern docs filed in their jurisdiction.
Ok, so BB (20th ed.) at 270 lists it as "55 Mass. (1 Cush.)", sort of like a string cite to both. I think this would probably be best.