Extra on discovering Supreme Court docket circumstances

Yesterday, The Authorized Genealogist tried to ease again into family tree running a blog after touring in Australia.

It was not the smoothest of transitions.

Beginning off with not initially giving the hyperlink to the gathering of U.S. Supreme Court docket circumstances put on-line by the Library of Congress — the gathering might be discovered right here, at https://www.loc.gov/collections/united-states-reports/ — and never mentioning why I like the gathering — whenever you discover the case you need, it’s introduced instantly as a downloadable PDF file — I most likely ought to have waited a day or two to attempt to recover from the worst of the jetlag.


At any price, now you may have the hyperlink — it truly is at https://www.loc.gov/collections/united-states-reports/ — and you already know why I significantly like the gathering.

However there’s nonetheless the minor little matter of considered one of its shortcomings: the gathering isn’t fully word-searchable. You want the title of the case or its quotation to discover a specific case and get it neatly introduced in that downloadable PDF format.

So how, reader Susen Lukesh requested, might she use it if she knew that her grandfather had argued a case earlier than the U.S. Supreme Court docket — however didn’t know the title or quotation of the case?

That’s the place different Supreme Court docket case choices come into play.

Supreme Court searches

First off, after all, you may merely enter what you do know into your favourite search engine and see what comes up. In Susan’s case, she knew her grandfather’s title — Arthur W. Blackman — and the truth that the case had concerned a railroad. She thought that the case was argued earlier than Justice Brandeis. That’s greater than sufficient to look with.

Utilizing, for instance, the search phrases “Arthur W. Blackman” and “Supreme Court docket,” nearly any search engine produces not less than two circumstances argued by Susan’s grandfather:

Davis v. L.L. Cohen & Co., 268 U.S. 638 (1925), opinion by Justice Sanford

Mellon v. Weiss, 270 U.S. 565 (1926), opinion by Justice Brandeis

And I additionally might have discovered both of these utilizing the major search engines at different key websites for Supreme Court docket circumstances:

• The FindLaw.com free textual content seek for Supreme Court docket circumstances right here, utilizing the search time period “Arthur W. Blackman”

• The Supreme Court docket search perform at Cornell Regulation College’s Authorized Data Institute right here, utilizing the search time period “Arthur W. Blackman”

Each of these websites will let me learn the circumstances in full, in HTML format, on-line.

Then if I needed a straightforward option to obtain the circumstances, as printed within the official U.S. Reviews, I’d use these case names — Davis v. L.L. Cohen & Co. and Mellon v. Weiss — or the citations — 268 U.S. 638 or 270 U.S. 565 — I can simply retrieve the downloadable PDF recordsdata of simply these circumstances within the Library of Congress U.S. Reviews assortment.

Oh… and yet one more choice usually missed: Google Scholar, and its case regulation search perform. By clicking on the radio button beneath the search field for Case regulation, after which utilizing the identical search time period “Arthur W. Blackman”, I not solely can discover the 2 Supreme Court docket circumstances, but in addition a complete bunch of decrease court docket circumstances the place Susan’s grandfather was one of many attorneys of document.

In different phrases, even in relation to court docket opinions, moderately exhaustive analysis normally requires taking a look at all of the choices…

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