The Burger Court (1969–86)


What was the prior legal experience for Warren Burger before ascending to the U.S. Supreme Court?

After graduating from night law school at St. Paul College of Law (now William Mitchell College of Law) in 1931, Burger entered private practice. He worked at a law firm in St. Paul for more than twenty years, from 1931 to 1953. In 1953, he entered public service as an assistant U.S. attorney general in charge of the Claims Division. In 1956, he was nominated to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, often considered the “second” highest court in America behind the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1969, he replaced the retiring Earl Warren and became the nation’s fifteenth chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court.


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