September 24, 2012 Articles

Book Review: Courtwatchers: Eyewitness Accounts in Supreme Court History

The stories are often delightful, illuminating the personality of a justice or exploring an aspect of court life.

By Dennis Owens

Clare Cushman
Courtwatchers: Eyewitness Accounts in Supreme Court History
Rowman and Littlefield (2011)

This book was published in association with the Supreme Court Historical Society. Ms. Cushman is editor of the society’s Journal of Supreme Court History. She dedicated the book to “my husband and children, without whom I would have finished this book much sooner.” Thus, we are put on notice that some playfulness will be served up with the history. The stories are often delightful, illuminating the personality of a justice or exploring an aspect of court life. Much good use is made of original sources. This brings us to a small style flaw of this volume. The quoted material is presented in blocked and indented paragraphs of smaller type font. These paragraphs are usually preceded by the author’s introduction, which often give the gist of the quoted material, making for needless repetition.

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