The Judiciary Act of 1789 was the first bill to be moved by the US senate. The bill divided the country into 13 judicial districts. The Supreme Court was to have a chief Justice and five associate judges. They were to meet in the capital. For the next 101 years, the justices held court twice yearly in all the 13 districts. The position of the Attorney general was created by the act and the president was assigned powers to nominate justices. This was at a time when the Anglo-Saxon laws were common in Europe.
The first court, the Supreme Court, assembled for the first time in 1st Feb, 1790 in New York. They made their own rules and heard the first case in 1792. It was the weakest arm of the three branches of government. The law was not well stipulated and as such it was never sure of its powers. In 1801, CJ John Marshall would drastically change the court systems. In his 34 year reign, he built the system in to what it is today.
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The modern court system has transformed as the constitution amendments stipulate. The Justices are nominated by the president. However, a new development is that the nominations must be accepted by a bigger percentage of the Senate. The constitution states that Justices serve for life. Thus, they serve until they choose to retire, are impeached or die. There are presently nine Justices.
There are two branches: State and Federal. The Federal System has 13 courts of appeal and 94 federal district courts. The state courts start fro the topmost; the highest state Court of appeal followed by State Appeals Court and then the Local Trial Courts. Apart from the two major ones are the Military courts that consist of the Court of Military Appeals, Court of claims and the court of International Trade.