Thursday, December 17, 2015

Library Hours During the Holidays

We are nearing the end of Fall Quarter and will be on our interim schedule. In addition, we're going to be closed for a few days. 

Sunday, December 20: closed

Monday and Tuesday, December 21st-22nd: closed

Wednesday, December 23: The library is open 8 am to 5 pm. The Reference Office is open 9 am to noon; 1 pm to 5 pm

Thursday, December 24: The library is open 8 am to 12 pm. The Reference Office is open 9 am to noon.

Friday, December 25: closed for Christmas holiday

Sunday, December 27: closed for interim

Monday, December 28 to Wednesday, December 30: The library is open 8 am to 5 pm. The Reference Office is open 9 am to noon; 1 pm to 5 pm. 

Thursday, December 31: The library is open 8 am to noon. The Reference Office is open 9 am to noon. 

Friday, January 1: closed for New Year's Day

Sunday, January 3: closed for interim
Please see our hours page for additional hours information.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Human Rights Day 2015

December 10 is Human Rights Day! It commemorates the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights on December 10, 1948.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly to serve as a comprehensive list of basic individual rights and freedoms that all nations should strive to protect. It is part of the International Bill of Human Rights, along with the more detailed and legally-binding International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (1966) and International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (1966).

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Updated Guide on Court Briefs & Oral Arguments

The Gallagher Law Library's guide to finding Court Briefs & Oral Arguments has been updated.

This extensive guide identifies free websites, commercial services, and print and microfiche collections available in the Law Library. It provides comprehensive lists for the following courts:

  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
  • Washington Supreme Court
  • Washington Court of Appeals
Links are also available for many other federal and state courts. 

If you are aware of other online collections of briefs and oral arguments, please contact Cheryl Nyberg with the information. 

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

60th Anniversary of Rosa Park's Arrest

The U.S. Courts website features a short video of Rosa Park's arrest and how it led to several important civil rights decisions.

The video, drawing on interviews with U.S. District Judge Myron H. Thompson and lawyer Fred Gray, notes that Parks was not the first woman arrested in Montgomery, Alabama, for refusing to give up her bus seat to a white patron. But when Parks’ arrest—on Dec. 1, 1955—sparked a citywide bus boycott, Gray enlisted four previously arrested women to file a class-action lawsuit in U.S. District Court. 
A yearlong boycott ended after the Supreme Court affirmed in Browder v. Gayle that segregated buses are unconstitutional. 

The Law Library website has a guide on Brown v. Board of Education, with links to websites and books available in the Library.

The Place Where the Boy Got His Fingers Pinched

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its first decision of the October 2015 term, OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs. The case involved an attempt to sue the Austrian national railroad. However, I am not interested in discussing the nuances of sovereign immunity. I want to highlight one of the letters/books cited in Chief Justice Robert's unanimous opinion of the court: Holmes and Frankfurter: their correspondence, 1912-1934. Here's how it was used:
A century ago, in a letter to then-Professor Frankfurter, Justice Holmes wrote that the “essentials” of a personal injury narrative will be found at the “point of contact”— “the place where the boy got his fingers pinched.” Letter (Dec. 19, 1915), in Holmes and Frankfurter: Their Correspondence, 1912–1934, p. 40 (R. Mennel & C. Compston eds. 1996). At least in this case, that insight holds true. Regardless of whether Sachs seeks relief under claims for negligence, strict liability for failure to warn, or breach of implied warranty, the “essentials” of her suit for purposes of §1605(a)(2) are found in Austria.
OBB Personenverkehr AG v. Sachs, No. 13–1067, slip op. at 9 (U.S. Dec. 1, 2015).
If you're interested in reading more of this letter or other letters between Justice Holmes and then-Professor Frankfurter, we have this book at the Gallagher Law Library. It's available in the Classified Stacks at KF8745.H6 A433 1996. Here's the publisher's description of the book:
Nearly four hundred previously unpublished letters capture the essence of an extraordinary and in some ways unlikely friendship between one of America's preeminent jurists and a younger, reform-minded colleague who would himself one day ascend to the Supreme Court. Oliver Wendell Holmes was seventy-one when he was introduced to fiery, effervescent Felix Frankfurter, who had come to Washington at age thirty to serve President Taft. The two couldn't have had more different backgrounds: Holmes was a Civil War hero of Boston Brahmin stock, while Frankfurter was a Jewish immigrant whose reformist views would lead him to help found the American Civil Liberties Union and act as key advisor to Franklin Roosevelt and his New Deal.  
With an introduction that provides historical background and annotations that supply context for cases mentioned, this unique collection illuminates a strong and mutually satisfying personal and professional relationship between two men whose exchanges on the meaning of law in general and American law in particular, the editors write, "found expression in their work and influenced legal and political change in their own lifetimes and in ours as well."
I'm not sure when Chief Justice Roberts, his clerks, or another member of the Court read the letter. It wasn't referenced in any of the briefs of this case. Maybe one read the book over the summer; the possibilities are endless. I could only find a couple references to the letter in law review articles, one from a book review of a Holmes biography (33 Wm. & Mary L. Rev. 1219) and the other from an article by Robert C. Post, Dean of Yale Law School. Here is the reference made in the latter: