|Former Associate Justice of the U.S. Supreme Court|
From: August 18, 1937 – September 17, 1971
|Nominator||Franklin D. Roosevelt|
|Predecessor||Willis Van Devanter|
|U.S. Senator from Alabama|
From: March 4, 1927 – August 19, 1937
|Predecessor||Oscar W. Underwood|
|Successor||Dixie B. Graves|
|Spouse(s)||Josephine Foster (1921-1951)|
Elizabeth Seay DeMeritte (1957-death)
Hugo LaFayette Black (February 27, 1886 – September 25, 1971) was an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. Appointed by Franklin D. Roosevelt, he served from August 19, 1937 – September 17, 1971.
He had previously served as a Democrat in the U.S. Senate from 1926-1937, representing the State of Alabama. Black built his winning Senate campaign around multiple appearances at KKK meetings. Before his political career he was a member of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1920s. In 1921 Black successfully defended E. R. Stephenson in his trial for the murder of a Catholic priest, Fr. James E. Coyle.
As a Supreme Court Justice, Black was completely opposed to:
- school prayer
- religion in public life
- patent rights
- any limitations on pornography
Black was well known for his anti-Catholic viewpoints, and was profoundly influenced by the writings of Paul Blanshard. In Korematsu v. the United States, Black voted to uphold President Roosevelt's mass arrests and incarceration of Japanese men, women, and children based on race.