Uc cases were prosecuted in the federal district courts with federal court judges. So where are the records of the court back in the 1800s? This may take a while to find out. I found a webpage outlining the history of the courts in Utah from the Utah State Division of Records and Archive Service. I suggest starting with the courts themselves for newer cases, say the last 30 or 40 years, and with the various state archives before that time. Guess what? This isn't as easy at all. In fact, it turns out to be highly complicated and very difficult. There is a detailed chart showing the counties and the court jurisdiction during different time periods, which is very long. Older states, such as those in the eastern U.S. will likely be just as complicated or more so. Ultimately, I determined that the records were likely in the Southern Division of the Federal District Court and that the records were likely in the National Archives.
A visit to the National Archives site was even more complicated. It turns out that National Archives and Record Administration is moving ponderously into the digital age. They do have hundreds of thousands of digitized documents, but that is the subject of a whole book. I can just say, if there is a more complicated website search than trying to use the NARA website, I haven't seen it yet. Have faith, the records are there, they are just buried in layer upon layer of indexes and sub-indexes and searched by vague search terms. Fortunately, some of the records have been digitized by other entities. By chance, I found the record for my ancestor in Footnote.com now Fold3.com. They had a digitized record of the entire court file. You might also try FamilySearch.org, Ancestry.com and Archive.org before spending your life learning how to do research in the National Archives. Here is where you start according to the NARA:
ARC contains some descriptions of archival materials that are genealogical sources. Please see ARC Guide for Genealogists and Family Historians for more specific information.I need to make a distinction between case files and court records. Usually the term "cases," refers to reported appeals cases rather than all of the records in the case, which is of course very confusing. Reported cases are collected in huge series of books, now totally online. That is the good news, the bad news is that the most complete collections are in two huge (I mean really huge) databases called WestLaw.com and LexisNexis.com. Why is this bad news? A subscription to these databases costs thousands of dollars. Some libraries have access and you might try talking to an attorney or two or three and see if you could do a search. Believe me, it can cost into the hundreds of dollars to do one search.
For more information about genealogical research at NARA, please see NARA's gateway for genealogists/family historians.