cratic managers as they discussed with Bryan his candidacy for Congress. This conversation took place months prior to the Nebraska State Democratic Convention, which was held on August 14, 1890. The opinion reached in the Foxworthy case was issued in April 1890, four months prior to the state convention. Though one cannot conclude that Bryan spoke to Sawyer through Snell, it does suggest that because of his involvement in the Easterday cases, Bryan himself bridged a political chasm.
From this description of the cases that had the names Talbot and Bryan or Bryan on the Nebraska Supreme Court docket, only eight cases can be described as having Bryan act as a direct participant. Of the six cases that Talbot and Bryan argued together, the firm won four and lost two. Of the cases that Bryan argued before the court, either with the firm or alone, Bryan won four and lost two. Though Bryan lost both cases involving the recovery of debts owed, his cases cover a wide array of legal problems. The more successful of Bryan's cases were those that challenged the meaning of state statutes.
Bryan was a knowledgeable lawyer who could successfully argue cases in front of the state supreme court, but he did not operate in a vacuum. Talbot undoubtedly contributed in all the cases handled under their firm's name, and the extent to which one was more knowledgeable than the other is not possible to determine. One can conclude, however, that Bryan and Talbot were able to build a successful practice. This was a considerable accomplishment given that Bryan's practice in Nebraska lasted less than four years and that Talbot, prior to Bryan's move to Nebraska, worked almost exclusively for the Missouri Pacific Railroad. Though Bryan left the legal profession for politics, he did so after having achieved a certain position of significance with Nebraska's highest court and within Nebraska's legal community.