Lessons from the Law Practice of Abraham Lincoln

2.5 General AV CLE Credits | WSBA AV CLE Activity ID #411317

What can we learn from Abraham Lincoln's 24 years of trying cases? How did he balance professionalism with zealous advocacy, even when his client's case was weak? How did he examine witnesses and present closing arguments? Is it realistic for us to aspire to Lincoln's immortal prose? In these and other areas, our inquiry will be leavened with healthy doses of Lincoln's irrepressible humor.

Overview

Recorded:  10/02/2015
Credits:  2.5 General AV CLE | WSBA AV CLE Activity ID #411317
Length: 2 hours, 42 minutes

Featured Speakers:
Patrick S. Brady

What can we learn from Abraham Lincoln's 24 years of trying cases in the courthouses of central Illinois? Lawyers claim Lincoln as one of their own, and praise him as a paragon of professionalism. How did he balance professionalism with zealous advocacy, even when his client's case was weak? How did he examine witnesses and present closing arguments? Would one of his most creative closings, in a contract case, be allowed under current Washington law? Was his witness preparation ethical in his most famous case, the moonlight-almanac murder trial? How did he use his experience with riverboats and machines in his greatest case, representing new transportation (railroad, bridge, and Chicago) against old (steamboat and St. Louis)? Did Lincoln fight with special fervor when his clients were women? Why did the future Great Emancipator represent an owner opposing a slave's claim to freedom, while never advocating a slave's claim? Is it realistic for us to aspire to Lincoln's immortal prose? In these and other areas, our inquiry will be leavened with healthy doses of Lincoln's irrepressible humor.

Agenda

9:30 a.m.-10:45 a.m.
  • Lincoln Learns Law

  • Lincoln Rides the Circuit

  • Trial Techniques, Witness Preparation, Cross-Examination, Closing Argument

  • Quotations for Briefs, Lincoln's Prose

10:45-11 a.m. - BREAK

11 a.m.-12:15 p.m.
  • Ethics, Conflicts, Clients, Balancing Professionalism with Zealous Advocacy when the Client's Case Was Weak

  • The Matson Slave Case, His Most Inexplicable, with Lincoln Opposing a Slave's Claim to Freedom

  • The Effie Afton Case, His Most Important, with Lincoln Representing New Transportation (Bridge, RR, Chicago) against Old (Steamboat, St. Louis)

  • The Armstrong-Moonlight-Almanac-Murder Case, Lincoln's Most Famous (1939 Henry Fonda Movie)

  • Law and Politics

Presenters

PATRICK S. BRADY taught U.S. History at the University of California, Riverside, and his articles and reviews have appeared in The Journal of Southern History, Civil War History, The V V A Veteran, The Broker, Western Forester, Indiana Law Journal, North Carolina Central Law Journal, and other publications. His trial and appellate practice has ranged from timber, nuclear fuel and Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act cases to broker and insurance coverage and bad faith issues, which are his current emphasis at Forsberg & Umlauf, Seattle, and have been the subject of prior CLEs he has presented.

Pricing

General Registration - $75.00

SU School of Law Alumni Registration - $60.00


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For further information, please contact the WSBA Service Center at 206-443-WSBA (9722), 800-945-WSBA (9722), or questions@wsba.org.