Whose Birthday Is It? June 1, 2016

John Marshall Harlan (1833)

After commanding a Union regiment in the American Civil War, Harlan served as a state attorney general before being appointed to the Supreme Court by President Rutherford B. Hayes in 1877. During his tenure, which lasted until his death in 1911, he became the court’s outstanding liberal justice and one of the most forceful dissenters in its history. His best-known dissenting opinion came in Plessy v. Ferguson, in which the Supreme Court established what infamous doctrine? More…


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