Book Cover

On Monday, a special event is being held at the Texas Supreme Court to mark the publication of “The Texas Supreme Court: A Narrative History, 1836-1986” by James Haley.

The book begins around the time of Texas became an independent Republic in 1836 and ends in 1986, which is both an even 150 years and a smooth place to divide history from the present day. (( The modern Republican Court began to form in 1988, with the elections of Justice Hecht and former Chief Justice Phillips. ))

The description on Amazon teases that the book “use[s] a lively narrative style rather than a legalistic approach.” I hope that won’t dissuade too many appellate readers from ordering.

It continues:

[Haley] focuses on the personalities and judicial philosophies of those who served on the Supreme Court, as well as on the interplay between the Court’s rulings and the state’s unique history in such areas as slavery, women’s rights, land and water rights, the rise of the railroad and oil and gas industries, Prohibition, civil rights, and consumer protection.

That’s quite a bit to pack into 344 pages.

The ceremony of the Court receiving a copy of the book will be held on Monday February 11, 2013 at 4:00 p.m. in the Texas Capitol Building’s historic courtroom (not the regular court chamber). Seating is limited, but the Court does plan to live-stream the ceremony, preserving the event for posterity — or at least for you to view it at your convenience later.

The author will also be speaking at the CLE program “The History of Texas Supreme Court Jurisprudence” (brochure) on April 11, 2013, jointly sponsored by the State Bar and the Texas Supreme Court Historical Society.