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The papers of local, state, and federal judges are among the many interesting law-related materials that the Manuscripts and Archives Department contains. These papers often offer interesting insights into jurists' judicial philosophy, the reasoning behind particular judicial decisions, and their personal lives.
As the sample collections below indicate, judges' papers typically include a variety of documents that are valuable for a variety of research purposes. In addition to docket information and other court documents that reveal the inner workings of judicial chambers, these papers also include professional correspondence and files that document certain judges' extrajudicial work (e.g. service on legal reform task forces and committees). Some collections include material that relate to judges' careers before and after their time on the bench.
If the judge that you are interested in does not appear on the list below, try:
These papers detail the personal lives and professional careers of several generations and family lines of the Baldwin family of Connecticut. They include papers, court dockets, and other legal material relating to Simeon Baldwin (Associate Judge of the Superior Court of Connecticut, 1806-1817), and Simeon Eben Baldwin (Associate Justice and Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of Connecticut, 1893-1910).
The papers are primarily printed and typescript documents relating to Hugh Bayne's service on international arbitration commissions. His decisions as arbiter include his interpretations of disarmament clauses of the Versailles Treaty (1923), his opinion on the claims of the Standard Oil Company (1926), and his opinion on the claim of Belgium to the treasure of the Order of the Golden Fleece.
Judge Edward R. Becker, a Yale Law School alumnus, served on the U.S. District Court of Eastern Pennsylvania and the Third Circuit Court of Appeals, and was known as an expert on antitrust law and use of expert evidence in trials. His papers include correspondence, memoranda, other court-related documents, speeches, subject files, and other materials dating from 1943 to 2006.
Correspondence, financial records, diaries, scrapbooks, account books and memorabilia of the Bristol family of New Haven and New London, Connecticut. These documents include the professional and personal correspondence of William Bristol, Judge of the Connecticut Superior Court and Supreme Court of Errors (1819-1826) and of the United States District Court of Connecticut (1826-1836).
Charles E. Clark was appointed to the Yale Law School faculty in 1919 and served as Dean between 1929 and 1939. He was appointed to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in 1939 and was a judge on that court until his death in 1963. The bulk of these papers cover the period 1935-1963 and reflect Clark's position as a judge and as the reporter on the United States Supreme Court's Advisory Committee on Rules for Civil Procedure (1935-1956).
Pierpoint Edwards was a prominent Connecticut attorney and federal judge. These papers contain legal and financial documents relating to Edwards's business activities and his legal career, most of which was carried on in New Haven. Also included are drafts of his political writings and speeches on the Federalist Party, Connecticut's charter government, and other topics.
These papers consist of Supreme Court materials, correspondence, writings, and photographs that document the various aspects of Abe Fortas’s career as a law school professor, government official, lawyer in private practice, presidential advisor, patron and practitioner of the arts, public figure, and Supreme Court Justice.
Jerome N. Frank was a distinguished judge, lawyer, author, and government official. From 1946 to 1956 he was visiting lecturer at the Yale Law School. This large collection of papers consists of correspondence, legal material (including opinions, decisions, calendars, memoranda, and other papers), writings, speeches, Yale course materials, and family and personal papers.
Tapping Reeve founded the Litchfield Law School, the earliest and, for many years, the most important in the country. In 1798 he was appointed a judge of the Superior Court of Connecticut and in 1814 he was made chief justice of the Supreme Court of Errors. This collection contains letters relating to both family and business affairs of Reeve and his wife, Sarah Burr Reeve.
George Bundy Smith was a judge, author, and civil rights activist who served on the New York State Supreme Court and Court of Appeals. The papers include writings and speeches by Smith as well as clippings, photographs, correspondence, and ephemera documenting Smith’s career as a judge and lawyer; his activism as a Freedom Rider in Alabama; his work as an author and professor; and his education and family life.
These papers consist of Potter Stewart's case files and supporting documentation during his tenure as a U.S. Supreme Court Justice and as a judge on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. There is a small amount of material concerning his service on committees and about family matters.
This collection consists of correspondence, memoranda, legal documents, reports, minutes of meetings, speeches, printed matter and memorabilia of Thomas Day Thacher, judge and political figure in New York City. The papers include significant material relating to his activities as Solicitor General of the United States (1930-1933), as a participant in the New York City Charter revision of 1936, and legal papers from his period on the New York Court of Appeals (1943-1948).