The Roots of Justice: Crime and Punishment in Alameda County, California, 1870-1910

Lawrence M. Friedman, Robert V. Percival.

Published 1981. Order online through The University of North Carolina Press. ISBN: 978-0-8078-9748-5.

Focusing on a single county at a time when the population grew from 24,000 to 246,000, the authors combine statistical analysis of documentary sources, contemporary newspaper accounts, and exploration in criminal case files to give a detailed reconstruction of the operations of the county’s entire criminal justice system. By tracing the process from arrest to trial, sentencing, and punishment, this study will have a profound effect on our perception of American criminal justice.

1982 James Willard Hurst Prize in American Legal History, Law and Society Association, 1984 Robert G. Athearn Award, Western History Association

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