Sherman Minton: Wikis


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Sherman Minton
The face of a middle-aged man with dark hair and a prominent nose looking directly forward with a slight smile
Minton's official Supreme Court photo

In office
January 3, 1935 – January 3, 1941
Preceded by Arthur R. Robinson
Succeeded by Raymond E. Willis

In office
May 12, 1941 – October 12, 1949
Nominated by Franklin D. Roosevelt
Preceded by Walter E. Treanor

In office
October 12, 1949 – October 15, 1956
Nominated by Harry S. Truman
Preceded by Wiley Blount Rutledge
Succeeded by William J. Brennan

Born October 20, 1890(1890-10-20)
Georgetown, Indiana
Died April 9, 1965 (aged 74)
New Albany, Indiana
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Gertrude Gurtz Minton
Alma mater Indiana University School of Law – Bloomington
Yale University
Military service
Service/branch United States Army
Rank Captain
Battles/wars World War I

Sherman "Shay" Minton (October 20, 1890 – April 9, 1965) was a Democratic United States Senator from Indiana and an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Born in rural southern Indiana, he was impoverished during his youth after his father was disabled and his mother died of breast cancer. He worked to pay his way through high school and went on to attend Indiana University, Yale and the Sorbonne, served as a Captain in World War I, and then launched his legal and political career.

After two failed attempts to be elected to the United States House of Representatives, Minton became involved in the administration of Governor of Indiana Paul V. McNutt where he earned a reputation for saving the government and the public money through his oversight of utility regulations. With the support of McNutt, he won election to the United States Senate in 1934 and during the campaign made his infamous "You Cannot Eat the Constitution" speech in defense of New Deal legislation. As part of the New Deal Coalition, he was fiercely partisan and championed President Franklin D. Roosevelt's unsuccessful court packing plans in the Senate and became one of his top allies in the Senate through his partisan investigations of Republican-controlled media conglomerates. Minton also became a close friend of fellow senator Harry Truman, and was speculated to be on the short-list for several of Roosevelt's choices for Supreme Court Justices.

After failing to be reelected to the Senate in 1940 and briefly serving as an administrative aid at the White House, he was appointed by Roosevelt to a federal judgeship on the United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, where he served for eight years and authored over 250 opinions. After Roosevelt's death and Vice President Truman's ascendancy to the Presidency, Minton was nominated and confirmed to replace a deceased Justice, becoming the last member of Congress to be appointed to the Supreme Court. He served on the Supreme Court for seven years where he advocated judicial restraint and opposed judicial activism. Initially a regular supporter of the majority opinions, he became a regular dissenter after the makeup of the court was altered due to the deaths and replacements of three of his fellow jurists. He retired from the court in 1956 due his worsening anemia. During his retirement, he spent considerable time traveling and lecturing until his death in 1965. Minton was memorialized in southern Indiana when the Sherman Minton Bridge was named in his honor in 1962.


Early life


Family and background

Sherman Minton was born on October 20, 1890 to John Evan and Emma Livers Minton in a four room home on Indiana State Road 64 in Georgetown, Floyd County, Indiana.[1] He was the third of the family's five children and was nicknamed Shay because of his younger brother's inability to properly pronounce his name. His father was a day laborer for the New Albany and St. Louis Air Line Railway, and his mother was a homemaker.[2] His ancestors were early American immigrants to Indiana, settling in the Georgetown area in 1814.[3] Minton's paternal grandfather, Jonathan Minton, was killed during the American Civil War and his father grew up on his own. Minton's parents married in 1883.[4][5]

As a young boy, Minton frequently got into trouble with his neighbors for breaking windows, throwing rocks at passers-by and playing practical jokes.[6] He received his basic education at a two-room schoolhouse in Georgetown, which he attended through eighth grade.[7][8] He was exposed to politics from an early age and his father took him to several political rallies, including an 1895 speech by Democratic Party leader William Jennings Bryan.[9] In 1898, Minton's father became disabled after suffering heat stroke while working. His condition led to the impoverishment of the family, who had to rely on the limited produce of their small farm for income.[10] Their financial situation worsened after his mother developed breast cancer in 1899. A traveling doctor attempted to remove her tumors during an operation on the family's dinner table in April 1900, but she died during the procedure. The death was an emotional blow to Minton, who thereafter refused to attend church and was known to speak against God, whom he blamed for his mother's death.[6] After advertising for a new wife in the newspaper, Minton's father remarried to Sarah Montague on December 3, 1901.[11]

Minton's father gradually regained some of his strength and was able to better manage his small farm. The family worked together collecting apples to sell to a local distillery and chickens and livestock to sell at a meat market, eventually saving enough money to open a butcher shop. Minton and his older brother traveled to the countryside to purchase cattle and drove them back to town to be butchered and sold.[12] As Minton grew older, he continued getting into trouble with the neighborhood. In 1904, he was arrested for disregarding a town ordinance forbidding bicyclists to ride on the sidewalk. He was taken before a justice of the peace and fined three dollars, an incident he later credited with changing his outlook on life and sparking his desire to become a lawyer.[13] To accomplish that goal and continue supporting his family, he traveled with his older brother Herbert to Fort Worth, Texas to take a job at Swift and Company, a meat packing plant. His father and younger siblings soon joined him after the two brothers' income was able to cover their expenses. After saving enough money to help the family, he returned to Indiana to attend high school, leaving his family in Texas.[12]


Minton first attended the Edwardsville High School in 1905, but the following year it was consolidated with nearby New Albany High School. There he played on the football, baseball and track teams. He founded the school's first debate club, the Wranglers, which won several awards. He worked in a local arcade to earn an income and during the summers he returned to Fort Worth to work at the Swift plant.[14] He was briefly expelled from school after committing a prank in February 1908.[n 1] The school was under the guidance of the innovative Superintendent Charles Allen Prosser at that time, and Prosser only let Minton return to school after he issued a formal apology before the entire school a week later.[15] Minton began dating Gertrude Gurtz in his senior year, and the two remained in regular correspondence after he left for college.[16] He graduated high school at the top of his class in 1910.[17][18]

Minton was intent on attending college and, during the summer of 1910, he took a job as a Swift Company salesman in the Fort Worth area to continue saving money. He returned to Indiana and enrolled at Indiana University in September 1911.[19] He took a heavy class load to complete his first three years of courses in only two years. Despite the workload, he joined the school's baseball team and debate team, and participated in the Jackson Club and Phi Delta Theta. He became friends with Paul V. McNutt, future Governor of Indiana, and several other men who would later become influential in the state.[20][n 2] During his second year he ran out of money and could not return to Texas to earn more because of his class schedule. He lodged in the fraternity house and was forced to live on berries he picked in the forest, leftover bread from the cafeteria and free milk. He completed graduate school at the top of his class in 1913 and moved on to Benjamin Harrison School of Law, which is now Indiana University School of Law.[21][22]

Because Minton was at the top of his class, he was entitled to serve as librarian at the legal college. The position paid a fair salary and allowed him to live more comfortably for his last two years in school. He graduated from law school, again at the top of his class, in 1915 and won a one year scholarship to take post-graduate courses at Yale. There he attended the regular lectures of former President of the United States and future Chief Justice of the United States William Howard Taft and focused on studying constitutional law. Taft remarked that Minton's post-graduate thesis was among the best he had ever read.[23] He continued debating at Yale and won the Wayland Club prize for extemporaneous public speaking. He earned a masters degree from Yale in 1916.[24] While at Yale Law School he helped to organize the university’s legal aid society.[25]

Legal career and WWI

In May 1916, Minton returned to New Albany, where he opened a law practice and renewed his relationship with Gurtz.[26] He took several cases and earned experience working pro bono to assist the local county prosecutor. He joined the Chautauqua Lecture Circuit, and traveled to several cities to give speeches. During one lecture circuit, he met William Jennings Bryan. The three-time Presidential candidate advised the young Hoosier about politics, inspiring him to consider a career in public life.[26]

In 1917, just after United States declared war on Germany and entered World War I, Minton enlisted in the United States Army. He took an officers training at Fort Benjamin Harrison in hope of earning a commission, but was not among those awarded. In August he received a brief leave and returned to New Albany to marry Gurtz on August 11.[n 3] He returned to camp in the autumn and requested to repeat his training course, still hoping to receive a commission; after finishing the training he was commissioned as a captain.[27] He was dispatched to France in July 1918 as a member of the Eighty-fourth Division, and served on the front at Verdun, Soissons, and in Belgium. Minton's unit was responsible for scouting roads to ensure safe transport of men and supplies to the front.[28]

When President Woodrow Wilson came to Paris near the end of the war, Minton was in charge of a security detail guarding the negotiation hall and was able to meet Wilson. When the war ended, Minton remained briefly with the Army of Occupation in Germany before he was discharged in August 1919.[29] He remained in Paris several months and studied Roman law, international law, civil law and jurisprudence in the Faculte de Droit at the Sorbonne. He returned home in March 1920. The first of Minton's three children, Sherman Jr., was born while he was away.[30]

Political career

Electoral failures

A portrait of a young man in a military uniform. Above his head is written "STAND BY THE SOLDIERS / They Stood By You". Below the portrait is "Sherman Minton for CONGRESS. Subject to Democratic Primary Tuesday, May 4, 1920"
1920 primary campaign poster for Minton

When Minton returned home he reopened his law practice and decided to enter politics. His first attempt met with failure when he lost the Democratic primary to run for office in Indiana's 3rd congressional district, despite significant campaigning and his war record.[31] He lost to John Ewing 6,502 votes to 3,170, second place in a field of five candidates.[32][33] After the loss, he briefly joined the law firm of Stonsenburg and Weathers, two politically active lawyers, before moving to Miami where he joined another firm. In January 1928, he left the Miami practice and returned to Indiana and the Stonsenburg and Weathers firm. He ran again for the Democratic nomination to run for Congress in 1930 but was again defeated, this time by the former state party chairman Eugene B. Crowe.[34][35]

The following year, Minton became a local commander of the American Legion. The group had a powerful political influence in the state at the time, and he used his position for the benefit of his party. Paul McNutt was the national commander, and the two men became political allies.[36][37] When McNutt became governor in 1930, he offered Minton a position at the head of a new utility regulating commission. As commissioner, Minton successfully imposed regulations that cut the total of all state telephone bills by $525,000. The cuts received widespread media coverage, and Minton was credited with the success.[38][39]

Senate campaign

After serving two years as a commissioner, Minton ran for the United States Senate after he was encouraged to do so by party leaders. At the state Democratic Party Convention he was opposed by Earl Peters, a former chairman of the state party. With the support of McNutt, Minton won the nomination on the third ballot with 827 votes to Peters' 586.[40][41]

Minton launched a statewide campaign in August 1934 and began delivering speeches in defense of the New Deal. He attacked Republicans and blamed them for the conditions of the Great Depression. His opponent, incumbent Republican Senator Arthur R. Robinson, accused Minton of playing Santa Claus by trying to give everyone presents. He also attacked Minton for his support of the New Deal, which Robinson and Republicans called unconstitutional. Minton's initial campaign slogan was "You can't offer a hungry man the Constitution," a slogan he unveiled in a debate with Robinson in Corydon on August 11.[42] He continued using the slogan, and on September 11, Minton delivered his infamous "You Cannot Eat the Constitution" speech.[43][n 4] He replied to Republican attacks in the speech and claimed while the constitution should be upheld, it could not be eaten by the starving masses, therefore the needs of the masses were more important than the need to uphold the constitution. The speech backfired wildly and papers and opponents across the state began referring to Minton as traitorous.[44] Minton soon backtracked and explained his position again. The Republicans were also focusing their attack on the popular governor McNutt and his reorganization of the government, leading him to become more personally involved in the election. With the state party becoming more directly involved, Minton was able to win the election with fifty-two percent of the vote.[45]

Lobby Investigation Committee

A half-length portrait of a man wearing a suit with a smirk on his face and a slight purple hue about him
Senator Sherman Minton

Minton took his Senate seat in January 1935 and, as a freshman, sat in the back row of the chamber. His seat was next to Harry Truman's, also a freshman Democrat senator, and the two men quickly developed a friendship.[46] Minton was made a member of a special Lobby Investigation Committee that was chaired by Senator Hugo Black to look into questionable lobbyist groups. According to one of Minton's biographers, professor of political science Linda Gugin, in practice the committee's investigations were politically motivated and directed against groups who were challenging New Deal legislation.[47] The investigations made national news headlines several times beginning in the summer of 1935 as the committee launched a major probe into utility companies. These corporations were funding opposition to the Wheeler-Rayburn Act, a utility regulation bill pending before Congress. The committee alleged that the nation's major utility companies were fostering a conspiracy to defeat the bill and ordered Western Union to turn over all telegrams sent on behalf of the company for the committee to investigate.[48] After weeks of wrangling, which included the issuance of subpoenas and court injunctions, the committee obtained the telegrams and discovered that the utilities had spent over one million dollars in efforts to lobby for defeat of the bill. They also found money had been spent to send over five million fake letters and telegrams to senators, supposedly from concerned citizens, opposing the bill.[49] The Wheeler-Rayburn bill passed shortly after the debacle, which quickly led to the collapse and breakup of the nation's three largest utility companies.[50]

In 1936, the committee went a step further to attempt to prove that the same companies had improperly influenced Republican's in Congress. The committee began to subpoena telegrams sent by political opponents and their operatives, including the major Chicago law firm Winston, Straw, & Shaw. The firm launched legal action against the committee claiming their Fourth Amendment Rights had been violated. They won their case in court and ended the committee's ability to issue mass subpoenas.[51] William Randolph Hearst, a prominent and wealthy media magnate, began attacking the committee though his newspapers because of what he called their "reckless attacks on freedom".[52] Minton led the effort to silence Hearst and delivered a speech attacking him for his support of the Republican Party. In 1937, Senator Black was appointed to the Supreme Court and left the Senate, and Minton secured his post as chair of the committee. He immediately began a full scale investigation of the media conglomerate controlled by Frank E. Gannett.[52] Minton accused Gannett of publishing Republican Party propaganda. For several weeks, Minton delivered speeches attacking Gannett in the Senate, and Gannett would respond in his newspapers. When Gannett accused Minton of creating a dictatorship and attempting to control the press, Minton responded by introducing legislation that would make it "illegal to publish information known to be false."[53] Gannett, and a large number of allies, began to immediately attack Minton and the Democratic Party in the newspapers and on radio, claiming he was attacking the freedom of the press. Minton's allies in Congress asked him to withdraw the bill because of its political implications, leading him to drop the matter.[54]

With no chance that his bill would pass, Minton returned to his goal of exposing what he believed to be Republican control of the media. He led the committee to target a newspaper with national circulation entitled Rural Progress. The paper published anti-New Deal articles and had been operating at a financial loss for several years. Minton accused the publishers of improperly accepting large sums of money from corporations to influence its editors. The owner of the paper was summoned before the committee for a hearing, where Minton demanded to know why he was accepting money from corporations. The owner, Maurive V. Renolds, had little day-to-day interaction with the paper and was unable to answer the committee's questions.[55] When he asked his manager Dr. Glen Frank, who was also president of the University of Wisconsin, to assist him in answering the questions, Minton and his fellow Democrat Senators began to shout him down. As Frank began to explain that the money from the corporations was for advertising in the magazine, Minton began beating the gavel and yelling, "This committee doesn't intend to permit you to use this as a forum to air your Republican views."[56]

Minton did not realize that Frank was president of the University of Wisconsin, and soon Minton suffered as a result of his mistreatment of Frank. Frank went on NBC radio stations around the nation and granted interviews to papers, in which he lambasted Minton for his rudeness. He made lengthy arguments accusing Minton of attempting to violate the Bill of Rights. Minton was outraged by the attacks, which were beginning to have an effect among voters in Indiana. In 1938, he sought funding to launch a massive nationwide investigation of media conglomerates for proof of Republican interference in the press. Democratic Senator Edward R. Burke led an effort to defeat the measure and privately attacked Minton, accusing him of damaging the Democrat's cause, which led Minton to leave the Lobby Investigation Committee.[57]

Liberal partisan

Minton was a fierce partisan during his time in the Senate, and regularly attacked his opponents verbally. Democrat Senator Huey Long became one of Minton's favorite targets because of Long's often-threatened filibusters. During one of Long's filibusters, Long threatened to join the Republican Party. After most senators had left the chamber, Minton remained for several hours to periodically taunt Long. After tiring of the taunts, Long launched a rebuttal against Minton from the podium, calling him a vicious politician and claiming his positions would cost Minton reelection.[58] The exchange was unusual for its tone and later made national news.[59]

Minton was involved in many such exchanges, including a particularly fierce one with Republican Senator Lester J. Dickinson in March 1936. Dickinson delivered a speech in the Senate castigating President Franklin D. Roosevelt for carrying out what he termed illegal and unconstitutional acts. Minton responded with a range of attacks, some personal, against Dickinson and his positions and what Minton called his political naivety.[60]

Court packing

In 1936, the United States Supreme Court ruled the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933 unconstitutional. The decision was the first in which Minton gave speeches attacking the court for overriding the will of Congress. He accused the court of allowing itself to be influenced by political motives rather than the law.[61][62] In response to the court ruling, Minton began drafting a bill which would allow the Supreme Court to declare a law unconstitutional only if seven out the nine justices supported it. Before he introduced his bill, President Roosevelt introduced a plan of his own to deal with the Supreme Court in February 1937. Roosevelt proposed adding more justices to the court and creating a mandatory retirement age which would allow him to appoint an overwhelming majority to the court who be more sympathetic to his agenda, ensuring the safety of legislation passed by his party.[63][64]

Minton was pleased with Roosevelt's bill and quickly became its leading supporter in the Senate.[65] The measure was placed in an Omnibus bill that was designed to reform the judicial salaries and districting, along with many other measures. Republicans quickly discovered the court packing provision and began to attack the bill. Democrats had overwhelming super-majorities in Congress, and passage of the bill at first seemed assured.[66] Minton's support of the bill helped him earn the position of Senate majority whip, allowing him to more effectively push for its passage.[67] Minton delivered a six radio addresses on behalf of his party in support of the bill, but public opinion could not be swayed in the Democrats' favor.[68]

Minton received a death threat in the form on an envelope containing a shotgun shell and a message advising him to not vote for the court packing plan.[69] Many Democrats, fearing their reelection prospects, joined with Republicans and defeated the bill. Minton was unhappy with the loss and it cost him considerable support amongst his voters, but as a result of his close connection with the bill and the leaders of his party, he gained a higher level of influence among the Democrats.[70]

Although Minton supported the Roosevelt administration and became a regular guest at the White House, Minton did oppose the president on some measures. He voted to override a presidential veto of a grant of $2.5 billion USD ($39 billion in 2010 dollars) in bonus pay for World War I soldiers.[71] He supported the Dyer Anti-Lynching Bill which Roosevelt feared would cost the party support in the southern states.[72] He also supported an extension of the Hatch Act of 1939, a law that prevented federal employees from being forced to take part in state election campaigns lessening the influence of federal patronage.[73]

As World War II neared, Minton took a cautious position on United States involvement. When Finland was invaded by the Soviet Union he voted against granting a loan to Finland to help finance its defense efforts.[74] He also opposed selling munitions and weapons to either the Allies or the Axis powers.[75] He advocated and supported growing the American military and believed that American entry into the war was inevitable, but should be delayed as long as possible. He voted in favor of the Smith Act, which made it a crime to advocate for the overthrow of the government, a law specifically targeted at communists and fascists in the United States.[76] In his final year in office, there was considerable speculation that Minton would be named to higher office, including cabinet positions and the Supreme Court, but the speculations never proved true.[77]

Reelection campaign

Minton was a candidate for reelection to his Senate seat in 1940. At the same time, Paul McNutt was vying for the Democratic Presidential nomination. Roosevelt, however, announced his intention run for an unprecedented third term, forcing Minton to choose a side between the administration and his Indiana party. Minton sided with Roosevelt, which cost him McNutt's and the Indiana Democratic Party machine's support in his reelection.[78]

The Republican presidential candidate Wendell Wilkie was also a native of Indiana, and Minton faced a difficult challenge to win reelection. He attacked Wilkie and referred to him as a "sycophant for the rich and famous."[79] Wilkie never responded to Minton's attacks, leaving Minton's opponent, Raymond E. Willis, to respond to Minton's charges. Willis had run for the Senate two years earlier but was defeated by Democrat Frederick Van Nuys. Willis attacked Minton on a range of topics but focused on the legislation Minton supported while in the Senate. Willis claimed much of the legislation was unconstitutional and Minton's positions were detrimental to the nation. Minton responded by pointing out Willis's connections with wealthy corporations and accused him of not caring for the people.[80] Minton's campaign focused on highlighting the achievements of the New Deal programs. He claimed farm income in Indiana had doubled since 1932, and highlighted the passage of the Old Age Pension laws. His support of the draft and military preparedness for the coming war proved unpopular with voters and cost him considerable support, but the favorite son status of Wilkie proved to be the deciding factor in the election according to William Radcliff.[81][82] Despite his heavy campaigning, he lost the close election to Willis by 5,179 votes out of over 1.5 million cast.[83][81]

After leaving office in March 1941, Minton was given a position in the Roosevelt administration as a reward for his loyalty during the court packing failure.[84] He served as one of the president's advisers, a liaison between the White House and Congress. The extent of his duties is not fully known; Linda Gugin speculated that he was likely managing Roosevelt's patronage system.[85] Minton was responsible for getting several officials appointed to high offices in the federal bureaucracy and numerous others appointed to lower ranking positions.[85][86] Among the most significant things he did while adviser was to convince Roosevelt to support the creation of a Senate Defense committee chaired by Truman. The position brought Truman into the national spotlight and helped him to later secure the Vice Presidential post.[87]

Judicial career

Seventh Circuit

Nomination and confirmation

On May 7, 1941, Roosevelt announced Minton's nomination to the Chicago-based Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals.[88] The nomination made little news, and Minton was confirmed unanimously by the Senate on May 12. Minton resigned from his post in the administration, but remained active in Democratic circles making patronage recommendations. Even after he began working on the court, Minton remained active in Democratic politics behind the scenes and was in regular correspondence with Roosevelt on patronage issues.[89]

Minton was sworn in on May 29, but the court was in recess at the time.[89] Minton took his seat on the court when it returned to session on October 7.[90] The court had the highest court load of all the appellate courts in the nation at that time, averaging 40 cases per judge annually.[91] The men on the court were close friends, and Minton developed a particularly close friendship with Judge J. Earl Major, who offered Minton financial assistance during his later illnesses. Major had been on the court for several years and held a judicial philosophy much like Minton's. The two men regularly attended baseball games and were frequently guests in each other's homes.[92]

World War II broke out just months after Minton joined the court, creating a flood of cases in which precedent was little guide, including challenges to wartime measures, selective service laws, price controls, rationing and civil liberties. In the majority of these cases, the court affirmed the decisions of the district courts, but in several the court was required to establish a precedent.[93] Minton personally stated on several times his preference to affirm to the lower courts. He believed that the court which heard the case and pronounced judgment was generally able to provide a superior decision than the appellate courts. He believed the appellate process should be reserved for the more serious cases and cases where the lower court had clearly made a mistake.[94]


Minton was described as a "faithful disciple of judicial restraint," an unexpected development when compared to his overtly partisan political career.[95] Historian William Radcliff attributed Minton's conservative position to the distaste he developed for the courts when they overturned legislation passed while he was in the Senate, leading him to strongly believed in limited exercise of judicial power when evaluating the constitutionality of governmental action.[96] Much of the recently passed New Deal legislation was being tried in the courts for constitutionality and enforcement, putting Minton in an uncommon position of adjudicating cases depending on legislation he himself had helped write.[97]

The editors of Tax Magazine commented favorably on Minton's opinions on tax la, calling them "direct Hoosier logic".[98] Other court reporting papers of the time made similar comments on his opinions, applauding the manner in which he turned complex issues to simple questions that could easily be understood.[99]

During his time on the Seventh Circuit, Minton authored 253 of the court's opinions, including twelve dissenting opinions.[93][99] The court's most notable decisions with the longest impact were in the cases of Sunkist v. Sunkist and Kellogg’s v. General Mills, making it possible for different companies to use the same brand and product name as long as they produced dissimilar products.[100] In another case, the court set a precedent allowing companies to artificially raise prices in local markets if the purpose was to artificially lower prices in another market to remain competitive.[101] After Minton joined the U.S. Supreme Court, the decision was appealed to that body; Minton recused himself from the case which the court decided to overturn.[102][103][104] In another decision, Minton was in the majority that ruled the New York Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company was a monopoly under the Sherman Antitrust Act and ordered the company to break up its grocery business.[105][106] Minton was also in the majority in several cases to enforce decisions made by the National Labor Relations Board, usually to end worker strikes.[107] In the case of United States v. Knauer, the government was denying the wife of a United States Citizen entry into the country because of her possible ties to Nazism. In the opinion which Minton co-authored with Judge Major in the case, he stated that the "alien did not have any legal right—his status was a political decision to be made by officials in government."[108][109]

One of Minton's favorite cases was that of Modernistic Candies, Inc. v. Federal Trade Commission.[110][111] The candy company produced a one cent gumball dispenser in which almost all the gumballs were the same color. A few different colored gumballs were included which, when dispensed, entitled the purchaser to a prize from the merchant who owned the machine. The FTC had an injunction put in place barring the company from producing the machines because they claimed it violated anti-gambling. Minton wrote the majority opinion and sided with the majority to keep the injunction in place, but dryly mocked the counsel for the defense and the gambling law stating:

Counsel for the petitioner discussed at great length from a sociological point of view, of the age-old problem of the gambling instinct in the human being. According to his analysis, gambling pervades our entire economic system; thus insurance contracts are a gamble, stock and grain exchange transactions are gambles, and the farmer's dependence on weather is a gamble. Counsel's attempt to apply this analysis to the present case left us cold and unimpressed. He even reminded us that our great idol, Mr. Chief Justice John Marshall, in his day attended the horse races and wagered with his clergyman. In fact, they ran a book. As indicating how times have changed and how even our coarse nature has yielded to the protecting care of governmental policy, we confess we do not even know a bookmaker, clerical or otherwise, and our passes to the beautiful race tracks around Chicago lie in our desk unused.[111]

Minton often lamented that he was required to "pronounce the law as it was written, but on no occasion [c]ould he make the law."[110]

Clemency board and failing health

After the death of Roosevelt and Truman's ascendance to the Presidency, Minton continued offering advice to the new administration on a range of topics, including patronage and political maneuvering. Truman appointed Minton head of the War Department Clemency Board, a panel of judges charged with overseeing reviews of decisions made by the courts-martial.[112] The panel met every two weeks which, along with his responsibilities on the circuit court, kept Minton very busy and afforded him little rest, leading to a deterioration in his health.[113] While yachting with President Truman on Memorial Day in 1945, Truman asked Minton to accept an appointment to the position of Solicitor General of the United States. Minton declined because of his health, but he told Truman he would be interested in a seat on the Supreme Court.[114]

In September 1945, he suffered a heart attack while in Washington and was hospitalized for three months at Walter Reed Hospital.[115] After returning to work, he was forced to rest regularly due to gradually worsening anemia, and he sought to lessen his workload. To further complicate his health, on August 5, 1949, Minton tripped over a stone in his yard and broke his leg. The injury forced him to walk with a cane for the remainder of his life.[116]

Supreme Court

Nomination and confirmation

At a September 15, 1949, news conference, Truman announced the nomination of Minton, to the Supreme Court to succeed the deceased Justice Wiley Rutledge.[117] Minton had already privately accepted the nomination several days earlier after a telephone conversation with Truman.[118] Truman touted Minton's extensive education in law and his years of experience on the circuit courts to explain his reason for nominating Minton.[119]

News of Minton's appointment received mixed reviews nationally.[120] The New York Times said of Minton's appointment that Truman had allowed personal and political friendship to influence his choice.[121][122] The New Republic said "the President is again reverting to his deplorable habit of choosing men for high post because they happen to be his friends...". The Washington Post raised questions about Minton's ability to be confirmed by the Senate due to the power many of his foes held in the body.[123] The Indianapolis Star offered a more sympathetic opinion, pointing out Minton's qualifications and the pride Indiana could take in having a native on the Supreme Court.[123]

Indiana Senator William E. Jenner led opponents of Minton's nomination, including some of Minton's old foes, in an attempt to bring him before the body for hearings.[124] Minton wrote a letter to the Senate Judicial Committee answering several of their questions, but refused to submit himself to a hearing.[125] He mentioned his broken leg and hinted in his letter that it could be detrimental to his health to travel in his condition.[119] He also stated that as a sitting judge and former member of the Senate, he thought it would be improper for him submit himself to a hearing.[87] Although hearings had occurred irregularly in the past, it was not customary at that time to have a hearing on a nominee. During an absence of Jenners, Minton's allies worked to have the hearing request dropped and the Judicial Committee sent the measure to the full Senate in a vote of 9 to 2.[126] Senator Homer Ferguson attempted to have the nomination returned to committee but the motion failed, 45–21. The long debate over his appointment focused on his partisanship and support of the court packing plan during his time in the Senate, and his poor health. His opponents launched numerous delaying tactics; the session of the Senate lasted until midnight before the vote to confirm Minton could be held. His confirmation was approved 48-16 on October 3.[127] As of 2010, Minton remains the last member of Congress, sitting or former, to be appointed to the United States Supreme Court.[128]

Judicial restraint

Minton's central judicial philosophy was to attempt to ascertain and uphold the original intent of legislation.[129] He also took a broad view of governmental powers, dissenting in Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer, which ruled unconstitutional President Truman's wartime seizure of the steel mills to avert a strike.[130] Of all the cases in which Minton was involved, he disagreed most with the Youngstown decision and "went into a tirade" during the conference where the decision was made.[131] He argued that there "could be no vacant spot in power when the security of the nation is at stake."[132] Despite his strong protest, he could not influence the Court to permit the president to seize the steel manufacturing plants during wartime without congressional approval.[132] Minton joined with Chief Justice Fred M. Vinson and Justice Stanley Forman Reed in the dissenting opinion that the President had the authority through the war powers clause of the constitution.[133] Minton disappointed liberals by voting to uphold anti-communist legislation during the period of the "red scare", siding with the majority in 1951's Dennis v. United States, to uphold the conviction of the leader of the U.S. Communist Party.[134][135]

Five men sitting in a row with four men standing behind them. All wear flowing back robes and a large black curtain is behind them
The Warren Court in 1953; Minton standing at back right

Minton abhorred racial segregation and provided a solid vote to strike down the school segregation practices at issue in 1954's Brown v. Board of Education was among the few decisions in which he sided against the government.[129][136][137] According to biographer William Radcliff, the majority opinion authored by Minton in the 1953 case Barrows v. Jackson, was his most skillfully wrote opinion.[138][139] He framed the complex question of the case as: "Can a racially restrictive covenant be enforced at law by a suit for damages against a co-covenantor who allegedly broke the covenant?" The Court decided the answer was no.[138]

The Court was split over the legality of governmental loyalty tests. Many agencies had programs in place to ensure members of the government were not communists. Minton proved to be the deciding vote in cases regarding loyalty tests as they came before the Court.[140] In the case of Bailey v. Richardson, Minton's vote upheld the legality of the loyalty tests,[n 5] while in the decision he authored in the case of Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee v. McGrath, he voted to uphold the plaintiff's position that he had been terminated illegally because of his support of fascist ideology.[141][142][143] Minton's position gradually shifted to allowing the loyalty tests to take place, and in Adler v. Board of Ed. of City of New York he wrote the majority opinion allowing the tests and upholding New York's Feinberg Law.[144][145][n 6] This proved to be the most important vote as it allowed the tests to be given with only minimal suspicion of a person's disloyalty to the government.[146]

In the area of civil liberties, Minton adhered to the doctrine of "fundamental fairness", a test established by the Supreme Court in 1937. In one decision, Minton stated that the right of free speech was not an absolute right, and could be regulated so as not to violate the rights of others.[96]In United States v. Rabinowitz, Minton wrote the Court's opinion upholding a lower court ruling which allowed police to search automobiles without a warrant, provided there was probable cause to justify the search.[147] While on the Seventh Circuit he upheld the right of the government to deny the right to trial to non-citizens of the United States, including resident aliens.[109] The case ruling was subsequently upheld by the Supreme Court in a 1946 appeal.[109] A lawyer writing for the New Jersey Law Journal labeled Minton a "spokesman against freedom," calling him "a man of conspicuous judicial shortcomings, whose votes against civil liberties exceeded those of any other man on the Court, and who wrote comparatively few opinions of other kinds."[148] Linda Gugin pointed out that Minton was a disappointment to liberals, as he consistently chose order over freedom. Gugin also concludes that Minton had the strongest commitment to judicial restraint and ideological neutrality of any justice, past or present.[149]


Although Minton was on the Supreme Court, he remained casually involved in Democratic internal politics. He wrote Truman several letters criticizing Justices Robert H. Jackson and Hugo Black, referring to Black as a demagogue. He also offered advice on dealing with Republican opposition in the Senate. In a 1954 letter, after Truman left office, he urged Truman to help focus public attention on the economy and away from communism, a threat he claimed the Republicans were exaggerating to avoid confronting their own problems.[150]

After Truman's withdrawal from 1952 presidential campaign, Minton made remarks indicating he had advised Truman to stay out of the contested New Hampshire primary to begin with.[151] In August 1956, a reporter asked Minton about his preferred candidate in the upcoming presidential election. Minton answered, "I have great confidence in Adlai Stephenson."[152] He also remarked that Dwight D. Eisenhower was politically handicapped. He was lambasted in the media for his endorsement, which he attempted to retract a few days later after being advised to do so by other members of the court.[152]

Regular dissenter

Truman's other appointees to the court provided consistent conservative votes, and during Minton's first years on the court it was returned to the conservatism of the William Howard Taft era.[153] While on the court, Minton transformed from a New Deal senator into an almost reactionary judge as an ally of Justice Felix Frankfurter. Empirical coding of votes shows that Minton was the most conservative justice on the Court during his first year there, and remained in the conservative half of the court for the duration of his career.[154]

Minton did not particularly enjoy his judicial role on the Supreme Court in the later years as he found himself more frequently in the minority following the deaths of Justices Frank Murphy and Wiley B. Rutledge and their replacement by Eisenhower appointees.[154][155] After the death of Chief Justice Fred M. Vinson, Minton found himself with little support in many of his opinions.[156] The gregarious, backslapping Minton was popular among his colleagues on the Court, as he proved a soothing presence during a period on the Court marked by bitter personal feuds between strong personalities such as William O. Douglas and Felix Frankfurter.[157] Minton informed President Eisenhower of his intention to retire in a letter on September 7, 1956, in which he dryly stated his retirement was authorized by law. Eisenhower responded with a brief note wishing him a happy retirement.[158] Although he did not state so to the President, he informed the members of the court that his duties were too taxing on his worsening health. His anemia had steadily worsened, slowing him down both physically and mentally.[159] Minton served as a Justice until October 15, 1956. He was succeeded by William J. Brennan, Jr.[160]

Later life


Upon announcing his departure, he had remarked: "There will be more interest in who will succeed me than in my passing. I'm an echo."ref name="oyez">"Official Supreme Court media, Sherman Minton". Retrieved 2010-02-19. </ref> Despite the difficulties with his health that had caused him to retire from the high court, he regretted his retirement almost immediately after going through with it.[154]

Minton returned to his New Albany home, where he took a much lighter workload. Minton began lecturing occasionally at Indiana University and continued to give public speeches from time to time. For several years after retiring from the Supreme Court, Minton occasionally accepted assignments to serve temporarily on one of the lower federal courts.[154] He received an honorary doctorate degree from the University of Louisville.[161] He took many trips around the United States, and two trips to Europe.[162] In England, he received an honorary doctorate from Oxford University in 1956.[163]

Despite his failing health, Minton remained active in the Democratic Party. He was most concerned with President Eisenhower, who he believed was incompetent. He remained in regular correspondence with Truman, and the two met on several occasions at Democratic Party functions.[164]

Death and legacy

In late March 1965, Minton was admitted to a hospital in New Albany, where it was found he was suffering internal bleeding. He died in his sleep early in the morning of April 9. Minton's wife was Catholic, and his funeral was held at Holy Trinity Catholic Church and was attended by many dignitaries including several sitting members of the Supreme Court, the governors of Indiana and Kentucky, and several members of Congress. He was buried in the cemetery adjacent to the church. Minton himself was nominally Catholic and had shunned Christianity for most of his life; he only began to occasionally attend mass following his retirement.[165][166] He left most of his personal papers and judicial records to the Truman Presidential Library.[167] Four linear feet of Sherman Minton's papers are on deposit there.[168]

A shining bronze bust of an expressionless man sitting on a pedestal.
Bust of Minton by Merrill Gages on display at the rotunda of the Indiana Statehouse

Minton is the eponym of the Sherman Minton Bridge which carries Interstate 64 across the Ohio River, connecting western Louisville, Kentucky, with New Albany, Indiana. He attended the dedication of the bridge at a 1962 ceremony. Minton is also the namesake of the annual Sherman Minton Moot Court Competition, held at his alma mater, the Indiana University Maurer School of Law.[169] He is also honored (along with Indiana Senator Homer E. Capehart) in the Minton-Capehart federal building—on Indiana World War Memorial Plaza—in Indianapolis. A bronze bust of Minton was created and put on display in the Indiana Statehouse.[170]

Historians have noted the unique contrast between Minton's highly partisan political career in which he pushed for the agenda of the liberal New Deal, and his conservative positions while on the courts.[171][172] While some writers like Linda Gugin and legal historian William Radcliff have given high praise to Minton's logic in his written opinions, they point out that his positions had little long term impact.[173] Other legal historians, like Bernard Schwartz, have more negative opinion of Minton's judicial career. Schwartz wrote that Minton “was below mediocrity as a Justice. His opinions, relatively few for his tenure, are less than thirdrate, characterized by their cavalier approach to complicated issues.”[174] Schwartz went on to say that "he ranks near the bottom of any list of Justices."[174] Most of the precedents Minton helped establish were overturned by the Warren Court in the years immediately following his retirement. In total he wrote sixty-seven majority opinions along with several of the dissenting opinions.[175] Gugin authored a work in rebuttal to Schwartz's harsh critique saying that Minton's rulings were "predictable based on the principles of deference, precedent, and strict interpretation" and attributed his poor ranking to the bias of reviewers in favor of judicial activism.[176]

Minton's time on the court marked the end of a transitory period in the judiciary. Since Minton, justices have tended to serve increasingly longer terms on the court, which has had strong political science implications on the Supreme Court.[177] The growing concept of judicial non-partisanship became the norm in American politics after Minton—he was the last member of Congress of be appointed to the court.[178] Linda Gugin and Professor James St. Clair have noted that the federal courts have lost a valuable point of view by not having experienced legislators among their ranks.[179]

Minton played an important role behind the scenes of the court as a peacemaker between the two opposing factions on the court.[160] During his time as an associate justice, there was considerable personal animosity between the two wings of the court that at times escalated to where members refused to speak to each other for periods of time. Minton often helped to revise opinions so that they could be acceptable to a majority of the justices.[160] To encourage his fellow jurists to resolve their personal differences, he regularly held open house in his office in the afternoons and served beverages and desserts to the other justices. These attempts to keep peace led Justice Frankfurter to remark that while Minton would never be remembered as a great justice, he would be remembered as a great colleague by his fellow justices.[180]

Electoral history

Democratic Primary for Indiana's 3rd congressional district, 1920[29]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic John Ewing 6,502 39.4
Democratic Sherman Minton 3,170 19.2
United States Senate election 1934[181]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Sherman Minton 758,801 51.5
Republican Arthur R. Robinson 700,103 47.5
United States Senate election 1940[181]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Republican Raymond E. Willis 888,070 50.5
Democratic Sherman Minton 864,803 49.1

See also


  1. ^ Minton was dating a girl who was participating in singing competition at the school. While her other competitors were singing Minton shouted "Hurrah for our side" from his seat. After doing so repeatedly a teacher discovered from whom the exclamation was coming and suspended him from the school. (see: Radcliff, p. 16)
  2. ^ Wendell Wilkie was also in the debating club, and Minton and Wilkie debated each other on several occasions. (see: Radcliff, p. 20)
  3. ^ Gertrude Gurtz (February 2, 1893 – June 4, 1982) was a native of Harrison County. She graduated from St. Mary's of the Woods in 1911 and was working as a school teacher at the time of the marriage. (see: Radcliff, p. 25)
  4. ^ The speech was so named by newspapers who printed excerpts. In the speech Minton stated "You cannot walk up to a hungry man today and say, 'Here have a Constitution," and "you can't expect a farmer to dig himself out his debts with a Constitution." He finished his speech with "let us keep our priorities realistic; in times like these the needs of the people take precedence over all else." (see: Radcliff, p. 40)
  5. ^ In the case of Bailey v. Richardson the Court made a split decision resulting in the upholding of the lower Court's ruling by default. (see: Gugin (1997), p. 229)
  6. ^ In the decisions in Adler v. Board of Ed. of City of New York, Minton wrote, " From time immemorial, one's reputation has been determined in part by the company he keeps. In the employment of officials and teachers of the school system, the state may very properly inquire into the company they keep, and we know of no rule, constitutional or otherwise, that prevents the state, when determining the fitness and loyalty of such persons, from considering the organizations and persons with whom they associate." (See: 341 U.S. 123 (1951))



  1. ^ Radcliff, p. 7
  2. ^ Cushman, p. 431
  3. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 33
  4. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 34
  5. ^ Radcliff, p. 8
  6. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 40
  7. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 41
  8. ^ Radcliff, p. 11
  9. ^ Radcliff, p. 9
  10. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 39
  11. ^ Radcliff, p. 10
  12. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 43
  13. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 42
  14. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 44
  15. ^ Radcliff, p. 16
  16. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 47
  17. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 48
  18. ^ Radcliff, p. 12
  19. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 49
  20. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 50
  21. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 51
  22. ^ Radcliff, pp. 12–13
  23. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 52
  24. ^ Radcliff, p. 22
  25. ^ Kleber, John (2000). The encyclopedia of Louisville. Louisville: University Press of Kentucky. p. 624. ISBN 0813121000. 
  26. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 53
  27. ^ Radcliff, pp. 24–25
  28. ^ Radcliff, p. 27
  29. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 54
  30. ^ Gugin. p. 55
  31. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 57
  32. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 58
  33. ^ Radcliff, p. 29
  34. ^ Gugin, pp. 59–61
  35. ^ Radcliff, p. 31
  36. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 62
  37. ^ Radcliff, p. 33
  38. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 71
  39. ^ Radcliff, p. 35
  40. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 72
  41. ^ Radcliff, pp. 37–38
  42. ^ Radcliff, p. 40
  43. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 76
  44. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 77
  45. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 85
  46. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 87
  47. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 91
  48. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 92
  49. ^ Radcliff, p. 49
  50. ^ Gugin. p. 93
  51. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 94
  52. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 95
  53. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 96
  54. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 97
  55. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 100
  56. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 101
  57. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 102
  58. ^ Radcliff, p. 46
  59. ^ Radcliff, p. 47
  60. ^ Radcliff, p. 62
  61. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 103
  62. ^ Radcliff, p. 52
  63. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 105
  64. ^ Radcliff, pp. 53–55
  65. ^ Minton, Sherman (July 8 & 9, 1937). Reorganization of Federal Judiciary; speeches of Hon. Sherman Minton of Indiana in the Senate of the United States. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office. .
  66. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 106
  67. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 107
  68. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 109
  69. ^ Radcliff, p. 79
  70. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 113
  71. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 114
  72. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 115
  73. ^ Gugin, p 116
  74. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 119
  75. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 118
  76. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 121
  77. ^ Radcliff, p. 89
  78. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 123
  79. ^ Gugin, p, 143
  80. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 146.
  81. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 109
  82. ^ Cushman, p. 432
  83. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 147
  84. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 151
  85. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 155
  86. ^ Radcliff, p. 106
  87. ^ a b Cushman, p. 433
  88. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 156
  89. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 164
  90. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 157
  91. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 163
  92. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 161
  93. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 110
  94. ^ Radcliff, p. 113
  95. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 179
  96. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 114
  97. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 180
  98. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 181
  99. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 182
  100. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 190
  101. ^ Standard Oil Company v. Federal Trade Commission, 173 F.2d 210 (1949)
  102. ^ Radcliff, p. 118
  103. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 188
  104. ^ Standard Oil Company v. Federal Trade Commission, 340 U.S. 231 (1951)
  105. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 186
  106. ^ United States v. New York Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, 173 F.2d 79, (1949)
  107. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 183
  108. ^ United States v. Knauer, 149 F.2d 522 (1945)
  109. ^ a b c Radcliff, p. 115
  110. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 111
  111. ^ a b Modernistic Candies, Inc. v. Federal Trade Commission, 145 F.2d 454, 455 (1948)
  112. ^ "Courts of Appeal, Army Style". Milwaukee Journal. December 23, 1945.,4602232. Retrieved 2010-03-02.  Milwaukee Journal
  113. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 167
  114. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 8
  115. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 10
  116. ^ Radcliff, p. 129
  117. ^ Michael Ariens. "Sherman Minton biography". Michael Ariens. Retrieved 2010-02-19. 
  118. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 14
  119. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 15
  120. ^ Radcliff, p. 131
  121. ^ Eisler, p. 76
  122. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 18
  123. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 19
  124. ^ Radcliff, p. 132
  125. ^ "Senate History, October 1, 1949: Supreme Court Nominee Refuses to Testify". United States Senate. Retrieved 2010-02-19. 
  126. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 24
  127. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 27
  128. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 3
  129. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 261
  130. ^ Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer, 343 U.S. 579 (1952)
  131. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 210
  132. ^ a b Gugin (1997), p. 212
  133. ^ Radcliff, p. 151
  134. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 223
  135. ^ Dennis v. United States, 341 U.S. 494 (1951)
  136. ^ Brown v. Board of Education, 347 U.S. 483 (1954)
  137. ^ Radcliff, p. 159
  138. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 155
  139. ^ Barrows v. Jackson, 346 U.S. 249 (1953)
  140. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 230
  141. ^ Bailey v. Richardson 341 U.S. 918 (1951)
  142. ^ Joint Anti-Fascist Refugee Committee v. McGrath, 341 U.S. 123 (1951)
  143. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 229
  144. ^ Radcliff, p. 147
  145. ^ Adler v. Board of Ed. of City of New York, 342 U.S. 485 (1952)
  146. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 231
  147. ^ United States v. Rabinowitz, 339 U.S. 56 (1950)
  148. ^ Eisler, 96
  149. ^ Gugin (2009), p. 791
  150. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 257
  151. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 211
  152. ^ a b Radcliff, p. 137
  153. ^ Eisler, 76
  154. ^ a b c d Eisler, 88
  155. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 221
  156. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 279
  157. ^ Radcliff, p. 172
  158. ^ Radcliff, p. 173
  159. ^ Radcliff, p. 174
  160. ^ a b c Gugin (1997), p. 282
  161. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 288
  162. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 285
  163. ^ Radcliff, p. 183
  164. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 290
  165. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 304
  166. ^ Christensen, George A (1983). "Here Lies the Supreme Court: Gravesites of the Justices". Yearbook Supreme Court Historical Society at Internet Archive. Retrieved 2010-02-19. .
  167. ^ Radcliff, p. 140
  168. ^ "Sherman S. Minton papers". Harry S. Truman Library. Retrieved 2010-02-19. 
  169. ^ "Competition". Indiana University. Retrieved 2010-01-03. 
  170. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 287
  171. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 306
  172. ^ Racliff, p. 136
  173. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 307
  174. ^ a b Schwartz, p. 44
  175. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 280
  176. ^ Gugin (2009), p. 764
  177. ^ Crowe, Justin. Karpowitz Christopher (April 2006). "Where Have You Gone, Sherman Minton? The Decline of the Short-Term Supreme Court Justice". Princeton Law and Public Affairs Working Paper No. 06-014. Retrieved 2010-02-19. 
  178. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 308
  179. ^ Gugin (1997), p. 311
  180. ^ Radcliff, p. 139
  181. ^ a b Congressional Quarterly, p. 491


Further reading

  • Abraham, Henry J., Justices and Presidents: A Political History of Appointments to the Supreme Court. 3d. ed. (Oxford Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press, 1992). ISBN 0-19-506557-3.
  • Atkinson, David N. From New Deal Liberal to Supreme Court Conservative: The Metamorphosis of Justice Sherman Minton. Washington University Law Quarterly (1975): 361-94.
  • Barnes, Catherine A. (1978) Men of the Supreme Court: Profiles of the Justices, pp. 111–113.
  • Biographical Dictionary of the Federal Judiciary. Detroit: Gale Research, 1976.
  • Braden, George D. (Winter 1951) Mr. Justice Minton and the Truman Bloc. Indiana Law Journal 26: 153-68.
  • Corcoran, David Howard. (1977) “Sherman Minton: New Deal Senator.” Ph.D. dissertation, University of Kentucky.
  • Cushman, Clare, The Supreme Court Justices: Illustrated Biographies, 1789–1995 (2nd ed.) (Supreme Court Historical Society), (Congressional Quarterly Books, 2001) ISBN 1568021267; ISBN 9781568021263.
  • Dictionary of American Biography.
  • Frank, John P., The Justices of the United States Supreme Court: Their Lives and Major Opinions (Leon Friedman and Fred L. Israel, editors) (New York: Chelsea House Publishers: 1995) ISBN 0791013774, ISBN 978-0791013779.
  • Hall, Kermit L. (2005) "Minton, Sherman." The Oxford Companion to the Supreme Court of the United States. Oxford Oxfordshire: Oxford University Press 1150 pp. ISBN 9780641997792; ISBN 0641997795.
  • Martin, Fenton S. and Goehlert, Robert U., The U.S. Supreme Court: A Bibliography, (Congressional Quarterly Books, 1990). ISBN 0871875543.
  • Minton, Sherman. Reorganization of Federal Judiciary; speeches of Hon. Sherman Minton of Indiana in the Senate of the United States, July 8 & 9, 1937. Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office, 1937.
  • Urofsky, Melvin I., The Supreme Court Justices: A Biographical Dictionary (New York: Garland Publishing 1994). 590 pp. ISBN 0815311761; ISBN 978-0815311768.
  • Wallace, Harry L. Mr. Justice Minton—Hoosier Justice on the Supreme Court. Indiana Law Journal 34 (Winter 1959): 145-205; (Spring 1959): 377-424.

External links

Sherman Minton at Find a Grave

Michael Ariens. "Sherman Minton biography". Michael Ariens. Retrieved 2010-02-19.  "Official Supreme Court media, Sherman Minton". Retrieved 2010-02-19. 

United States Senate
Preceded by
Arthur R. Robinson
United States Senator (Class 1) from Indiana
Succeeded by
Raymond E. Willis
Legal offices
Preceded by
Walter Emanuel Treanor
Judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit
Succeeded by
Walter C. Lindley
Preceded by
Wiley Blount Rutledge
Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States
October 12, 1949 – October 15, 1956
Succeeded by
William J. Brennan


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