Supreme court building

Supreme Court Milestones

  • John Jay

    John Jay
    John Jay was a Founding Father and the first Chief Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court from 1789-1795.
  • John Marshall

    John Marshall
    John Marshall was an extremely influential Supreme Court Chief Justice who's rulings reshaped the government in important cases such as Marbury v. Madison, Dartmouth v. Woodward, and Worcester v. Georgia.
  • Marbury v. Madison

    Marbury v. Madison
    At the end of John Adams administration, he appointed William Marbury the justice of the peace in the District of Columbia. When the commision didn't go through, Marbury sued the Secretary of State, James Madison. Chief Justice John Marshall agreed with Marbury, but the case was considered unconstitutional, because of Article 3 in the Constitution.
  • Fletcher v. Peck

    Fletcher v. Peck
    The Georgia state legislature passed a land grant awarding territory to four companies. The next year, the legislature declared all the laws under it to be invalid. John Peck acquired some of the land and sold it to Robert Fletcher, but it was not legal. The court concluded that the Georgia legislature couldn't take away land or invalidate the contract.
  • McCollough v. Maryland

    McCollough v. Maryland
    Maryland tried to impede on the Second Bank of the United States by putting a tax on all the bank notes not chartered in Maryland. The Court determined that Congress had power to charter the bank.
  • Dartmouth v. Woodward

    Dartmouth v. Woodward
    New Hampshire wanted to change Dartmouth College, a privately funded institution, into a state university. Governent took control of the school, and the old trustees sued William Woodward, who sided with the new trustees. The court ruled it as a contract between private parties, so they couldn't interfere.
  • Gibbons v. Odgen

    Gibbons v. Odgen
    Aaron Odgen purchased an interest to navigate steamboats in New York and New Jersey that New York had granted to Robert Livingston and Robert Fulton. Thomas Gibbons was operating a rival steamboat between New York and New Jersey. Gibbons lost the case because Congress has the power to regulate commerce.