Stewart, Potter


Justice Stewart regrets he cannot attend the 1973 White House Correspondents Association Annual Dinner


Autograph ID: 7075
Condition: Very good
Description: “(1915-1985) Supreme Court Associate Justice 1958-81. During his tenure, he made major contributions to criminal justice reform, civil rights, access to the courts, and 4th Amendment jurisprudence. President Eisenhower appointed Stewart to the 6th US Circuit Court of Appeals in 1954, and in 1958, Eisenhower nominated him to the Supreme Court, confirmed the next year. Frequently in the minority on the Warren Court, he emerged as a centrist swing vote on the Burger Court. His opinion in Katz v. US established that the 4th Amendment “protects people, not places and the government’s installation of a recording device in a public phone booth violated the reasonable expectation of privacy and made government wiretapping by both state and federal authorities subject to the 4th Amendment’s warrant requirements. In Chimel v. California, he stated that arresting a suspect in his house does not give police the right to perform a warrantless search of the entire house, only the area surrounding the arrestee. Justice Stewart was a leader in trying to maintain access to federal courts in civil rights cases. His 1972 Sierra Club v. Morton opinion broadly laid out the requirements of standing in federal actions. His concurring opinion in the Jacobellis v. Ohio pornography case popularized the phrase “I know it when I see it. He voted with the majority in Roe v. Wade. In Jones v. Alfred H. Mayer Co., Stewart extended the 1866 Civil rights Act to outlaw private refusals to buy, sell, or lease real or personal property for racially discriminatory reasons. In 1965’s Shuttlesworth v. City of Birmingham, Stewart held that police could not use an anti-loitering law to keep civil rights workers from standing or demonstrating on a sidewalk. In 1989, journalist Bob Woodward disclosed that Stewart had been the primary source for his book, The Brethren.

TLS on 9 x 6 engraved Supreme Court Chambers letterhead, Washington, March 23 1973, to journalist Edgar A. Poe. Justice Stewart regrets that a previous commitment makes it impossible for him to accept his invitation to attend the Annual Dinner of the White House Correspondents Association, and sends his best wishes for a successful evening.

EDGAR ALLEN POE (1906-1998) Longtime Washington correspondent of the New Orleans Times-Picayune, past president of the White House Correspondents Association and the Gridiron Club. He joined the staff of the Times-Picayune in 1930, became its Washington correspondent in 1948, and also wrote a column, “Washington Panorama,” for the paper until he retired in 1994. He attended every national political convention from 1940-88, missing the 1944 conventions as he was a WW II war correspondent in the Pacific covering Louisiana and Mississippi units. He ended the war aboard the battleship Missouri in Tokyo Bay, witnessing the Japanese surrender and was one of the 1st reporters to tour Hiroshima. Poe began his 7-decade newspaper career in Alabama before joining the Times-Picayune. After working for its southern Mississippi bureau, he began covering Louisiana politics, and was said to have been one of the few reporters whom Huey Long had any use for. ”
Type: Letter

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