Stanley Forman Reed

Associate Justice, Supreme Court of the United States, 1938-d. 1980

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Stanley Forman Reed served as an associate justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1938 to 1980. Reed was born on December 13, 1884 in Minerva, Kentucky and went on to receive undergraduate degrees from Wesleyan College in 1902 and Yale University in 1906. He then attended the University of Virginia Law School and was admitted to the Kentucky bar. Reed practiced law in Maysville until 1929. During that time, he was elected to the Kentucky House of Representatives in 1912 and also served in World War I from 1917 to 1918 as a U.S. Army first lieutenant in the Intelligence Division. Following his law career in Maysville, Reed moved to Washington, D.C. where he served as general counsel for the Federal Farm Board (1929-1932) and the Reconstruction Finance Corporation (1935-1935). In March 1935, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed Reed as the Solicitor General of the United States. Three years later, Roosevelt nominated Reed to fill a Supreme Court seat vacated by Justice George Sutherland. The Senate confirmed Reed ten days after the nomination announcement. Reed retired from the Supreme Court on February 25, 1957, but he remained active in the Federal Judiciary as a visiting judge for years afterward. He passed away on April 2, 1980.

For more information on Justice Reed, see the exhibit Before Brown v. Board of Education.

Archival Materials

Oral Histories

  • Stanley F. Reed Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
  • "The Reminiscences of Stanley F. Reed," 1959, Oral History Research Office, Butler Library, Columbia University, New York.