The History of Equity Jurisdiction In Pennsylvania

In Armstrong School District v. Armstrong Education Association, 5 Pa. Commw. 387, 291 A.2d 125, 127 (Pa. Cmwlth. 1972), the court stated: The history of equity jurisdiction in Pennsylvania is different from that in other states. Courts of Chancery existed here in colonial times, but public prejudice was so strong against them that they were abolished after the Revolution. Courts of Common Pleas thereafter exercised only common law powers, and possessed none of the powers of a Court of Chancery. In 1836, some power to grant relief in equity was again given to the courts of Philadelphia County, and, through subsequent legislation and Constitutional provisions, these powers were later expanded and granted to all common pleas courts in the Commonwealth. These powers are still limited, however, and the extent to which they may be exercised lies within the control of the Legislature. A Pennsylvania court's equity jurisdiction, therefore, is limited and well defined.... "The courts of equity of Pennsylvania do not possess the general powers of a court of equity, but only such as have been conferred upon them by statute...."