Western Water Rights and the U.S. Supreme Court

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Exploring the little-known history behind the legal doctrine of prior appropriation--"first in time is first in right"--used to apportion water resources in the western United States, this book focuses on the important case of Wyoming v. Colorado(1922). U.S. Supreme Court Associate Justice Willis Van Devanter, a former Chief Justice of Wyoming, ruled in that state's favor, finding that prior appropriation applied across state lines--a controversial opinion influenced by cronyism. The dicta in the case, that the U.S. ...

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