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Today in Legal History: US v. E.C. Knight Decided

January 21, 1895. The Sherman Anti-Trust Act was passed by Congress in 1890 to stop large monopolies from controlling commerce.  The justification for the Sherman Act was the Commerce Clause.  In US v. E.C. Knight, 156 U.S. 1 (1895) the ability of the Sherman Act was heavily curtailed.  The Supreme Court made a distinction between commerce and manufacturing.  If the manufacturing was done within a single state, the Commerce Clause did not apply.  Until the Clayton Act in 1916, sugar and other processing monopolies like the one in US v. E.C. Knight could not be controlled by federal powers.


 

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ProQuest Congressional provides indexing (1789 to current) and selected full-text access (late 1980’s to current) to various publications of the United States Congress including bills, laws, hearings, testimony, reports, biographies, committee assignments, and voting records. It is a key online resource for compiling legislative histories. Contact the library reference desk for search assistance. A link to this resource can be found on the library database page.