The Justices of the United States Supreme Court: Their Lives and Major Opinions - Vol. 2

By Leon Friedman; Fred L. Israel | Go to book overview

calendar, as well as a formula for discovering the mean time of the new moon for any month and year for thirty centuries. He took calendar reform seriously and proposed legislation for a natural solar year relating the calendar to the solstices and equinoxes.

A combination of mathematical and religious interests led him to work out a precise model for Noah's ark and to fix the exact date of the Crucifixion (April 7, A.D. 30). He also wrote a history of the English translation of the Bible.

A hard worker throughout his life, even in his seventy-eighth year, he rose at 5 :30 A.M. to work on opinions. Fairman quotes a diary entry of March 14, 1891:

5½ a.m. My birthday. 78 years completed. Unable to work at my table last evening from somnolence I rise early this morning to make up for lost time; as being conference time, I have many cases to master and decide. I have now been 21 years on the bench . . . and begin to be pretty tired with the awful hard work of the court.

He died in his home less than a year later, on January 22, 1892.

To Bradley hard work, religion, and democracy belonged together and could lead to an ideal and rational society. He had little of the skepticism and tolerance of a Holmes and came to a conclusion about a law or legal rule because it was the right law or rule under the circumstances, and not because imperfect men should be allowed to bungle their way freely within broad limits of government. Man could be perfect, Bradley felt, and his life in the law was his best attempt to attain that goal. Whether or not his sense of duty to his party and loyalty to his friends affected his decisions, they still remain models of reason, carefully balancing conflicting claims of the state and the nation or business and the government. Most, if not all, of the moral derelictions he was accused of fade into insignificance as each episode is examined in detail. With his powerful intellect and moral assertiveness, he surpassed all but a handful of judges who have sat upon the Court.


SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

Many of Bradley's papers are held at the New Jersey Historical Society. Bradley's Miscellaneous Papers ( Newark, N.J., 1901) were published by his son shortly after his death. Bradley also wrote a history of his family, Family Notes Respecting the Bradley Family of Fairfield ( Newark, N.J., 1894). Charles Fairman has written extensively on the justice, and all his articles are superb examples of legal and historical research. See, in addition to the article cited in the text: "What Makes a Great Justice?" 30 Boston University Law Review49 ( 1950); " The Education of a Justice," 1 Stanford Law Review217 ( 1949); " The So-Called Granger Cases, Lord Hale and Justice Bradley," 5 Stanford Law Review587 ( 1953). Fairman also wrote a valuable biographical essay about Bradley that appears in Allison Dunham and Philip B. Kurland, ed., Mr. Justice ( Chicago, 1964).

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The Justices of the United States Supreme Court: Their Lives and Major Opinions - Vol. 2
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • The Justices of the United States Supreme Court - Their Lives and Major Opinions *
  • Contents *
  • About the Editors and Contributors vi
  • Peter V. Daniel *
  • Selected Bibliography 406
  • Samuel Nelson *
  • Selected Bibliography 420
  • Levi Woodbury *
  • Selected Bibliography 433
  • Robert C. Grier *
  • Selected Bibliography 445
  • Benjamin R. Curtis *
  • Selected Bibliography 460
  • John A. Campbell *
  • Selected Bibliography 475
  • Nathan Clifford *
  • Selected Bibliography 490
  • Noah H. Swayne *
  • Selected Bibliography 502
  • Samuel Miller *
  • Selected Bibliography 518
  • David Davis *
  • Selected Bibliography 528
  • Stephen J. Field *
  • Selected Bibliography 550
  • Salmon P. Chase *
  • Selected Bibliography 567
  • William Strong *
  • Selected Bibliography 578
  • Joseph P. Bradley *
  • Selected Bibliography 599
  • Ward Hunt *
  • Selected Bibliography 609
  • Morrison R. Waite *
  • Selected Bibliography 625
  • John M. Harlan *
  • Selected Bibliography 642
  • William B. Woods *
  • Selected Bibliography 653
  • Stanley Matthews *
  • Selected Bibliography 665
  • Horace Gray *
  • Selected Bibliography 677
  • Samuel Blatchford *
  • Selected Bibliography 692
  • Lucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar *
  • Selected Bibliography 714
  • Melville W. Fuller *
  • Selected Bibliography 740
  • David J. Brewer *
  • Selected Bibliography 761
  • Henry Billings Brown *
  • Selected Bibliography 773
  • George Shiras, Jr. *
  • Selected Bibliography 790
  • Howell E. Jackson *
  • Selected Bibliography 804
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