I was born in 1909, graduated from Swarthmore College in 1930, from
Rutgers University (M.A. economics) in 1931, and from Columbia Law
School in 1934.
On Columbia’s recommendation I served as law clerk to Justice Harlan
F. Stone 9f the Supreme Court during its 1934-1935 Term. There followed six
years iri ·the Office of Solicitor General, where I served under Solicitors
General Reed, Jackson and Biddle. From 1938 to 1941 I was First Assistant to
to the Solicitor General.
I became Solicitor of Labor in October 1941 but after ten months moved
five blocks west to become Solicitor of Interior. A year later I joined the
Special Branch of the Anny Military Intelligence. I was shortly assigned to the
British “code-breaking” unit at Bletchley, England, which after a half-year
reassigned me to handle their “Ultra” intelligence at the 6th U.S. Anny Group,
forming the southern flank of the Allied movement across Europe. I returned
to the Pentagon on the German surrender and to the Interior Department on
the Japanese surrender.
Secretary Ickes resigned in February 1946 after a quarrel with President
Truman. As the offices of Under Secretary and one of the two Assistant
Secretaries happened to be vacant at the time, I was thrust into administrative
and policy work, becoming Assistant Secretary in the spring of 1946. I
resigned a year latter in order to resume the practice of my profession.
I had expected to join the Columbia faculty but was persuaded by Frank
Shea to join him in forming a new law firm. We had an unusually interesting
calendar of litigation for a two-man firm, but for the first four or five years,
having no significant clients of my own, I was perforce an assistant to Shea.
By one accident or another that situation changed and there followed a half
century of interesting but hardly momentous work at Shea & Gardner.
My last Supreme Court argument was in 1982, my last Court of Appeals
argument was in 1988 and my last proceeding before an administrative agency
was in 1989.The subsequent decade has been pleasant enough but lacks the
promise of spring necessary to call it a time of hibernation.
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