The constitutionality of this section of the Judiciary Act was affirmed by the Supreme Court in 1816 in Martin v. Hunter's Lessee.1 This was a writ of error to the Court of Appeals of the State of Virginia, founded upon a refusal of that court to obey a mandate of the federal Supreme Court, the state court, in its judgment, saying: "The court is unanimously of opinion that the appellate power of the Supreme Court of the United States does not extend to this court under a sound construction of the Constitution of the United States; that so much of the twenty-fifth section of the Act of Congress, to establish the judicial courts of the United States, as extends the appellate jurisdiction of the Supreme Court to this court, is not in performance of the Constitution of the United States. That the writ of error in this case was improvidently allowed under the authority of that act; that the proceedings thereon in the Supreme Court were coram non judice in relation to this court, and that obedience to its mandate be declined by the court."

This position of the state court, the federal court, in one of the weightiest of its decisions, declared to be erroneous, the argument being that, though not granted in express terms, the very nature of the federal authority provided for by the Constitution makes this appellate power a necessary part of the general judicial power granted to the National Government.