ABA Journal

Legal History

1199 ABA Journal Legal History articles.

John Lennon’s lawyer turns paperback writer to recount little-known case

Jay Bergen’s representation of Lennon always made for a good story, last month he shared the case on a grander scale. He published Lennon, the Mobster & the Lawyer—The Untold Story, which recounts his representation of Lennon.

Could SCOTUS leaker be charged with crime? Espionage Act wouldn’t apply, but other laws might

Could the person who leaked U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s draft abortion opinion be charged with a crime? It’s possible, even though the Espionage Act wouldn’t apply, according to experts.

Wiretapping’s origins might surprise you

On the cover of author Brian Hochman’s book is a martini cocktail complete with a skewered olive. Hochman shares the real story that inspired the cover in this new podcast episode.

Rare but not unprecedented Supreme Court leak considered ‘staggering’

The leak of a draft majority opinion in a pending case is “staggering,” says law professor Jonathan Peters. “It’s the most significant leak in the Supreme Court’s history, not only because of the draft’s release but also because of the current political moment (charged as it is) and the personal and social consequences of the decision itself.”

Is Alito right about the ‘unbroken tradition of prohibiting abortion’? Scholars disagree on the history

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito’s draft abortion opinion that would overturn Roe v. Wade says the 1973 decision “either ignored or misstated” the history of abortion laws.

Legal experts fear loss of abortion right could usher in end of same-sex marriage, other rights

In the two days since Politico published a draft U.S. Supreme Court opinion that seems to strike down Roe v. Wade, several legal experts have expressed concerns that the same reasoning that eliminates the right to abortion could also put other constitutional rights at risk.

What does the original Roe v. Wade really say?

The U.S. Supreme Court appears poised to strike down Roe v. Wade, a landmark decision from 1973 that established a woman’s constitutional right to abortion. Norma McCorvey, a single, pregnant woman in Texas, brought a federal lawsuit in 1970 against district attorney Henry Wade, alleging that Texas criminal abortion statutes that originated in 1854 were unconstitutional.

How is ‘amicus’ pronounced? Justice Breyer and Judge Jackson disagree with each other and the majority view

Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson was once a law clerk for the justice she will replace, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer, but she didn’t adopt his pronunciation of “amicus.”

How and why Kazakhstan gave up its Soviet-era nuclear weapons

When the Soviet Union dissolved and Kazakhstan became a sovereign state, it now had a conundrum: Should the country retain the nuclear weapons and become the world’s fourth largest nuclear power or relinquish them in return for international commitments?

GOP opposition blocks bill to name federal courthouse after Black judge, a ‘legal legend’

A measure to name a federal courthouse after the first Black judge on the Florida Supreme Court was recently blocked in the U.S. House of Representatives after one lawmaker found a news clip on a prayer ruling.

‘I am the dream and the hope of the slave’: Ketanji Brown Jackson sees promise in historic confirmation

Speaking with emotion during a White House event, Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson credited pathbreaking leaders and generations of persevering Americans for her historic confirmation to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Law that keeps racist covenants in separate public record helps preserve history, top state court says

The Washington Supreme Court has said a new state law strikes a balance between removing racial covenants from a home’s title while keeping them part of the public record.

Join ABA Day 2022: Celebrating 25 years of advocacy on the Hill

This year, we will celebrate the 25th anniversary of this event during the week of April 4. The ongoing pandemic has restricted our ability to meet face-to-face in Washington, but we have adjusted our advocacy strategy and techniques. As in 2020 and 2021, ABA Day 2022 will be held virtually.

April 17, 1905: New York’s bakeshop labor law overturned

In October 1901, Joseph Lochner, who owned a bakery on South Street in Utica, New York, was indicted and subsequently convicted on two criminal counts of working his employees beyond the hourly limits of the Bakeshop Act, a relatively new state law that limited the working hours of bakery employees to 10 hours per day and 60 hours per week.

Lawyers react to federal anti-lynching law named after Emmett Till

President Joe Biden signed a bill into law Tuesday making lynching a federal hate crime—a move that drew praise from legal groups and lawyers.

Read more ...