John Marshall (1755-1835) became the fourth chief justice of the U.S. Supreme Court despite having had almost no formal schooling and after having studied law for a mere six weeks. Nevertheless, Marshall remains the only judge in American history whose distinction derives almost entirely from his judicial career.
During Marshall's nearly 35-year tenure as chief justice, he wielded the Constitution's awe-inspiring power aggressively and wisely, setting the Supreme Court on a course for the ages by ensuring its equal position in the triumvirate of the federal government of the United States and securing its role as interpreter and enforcer of the Constitution. Marshall's judicial energies were as unflagging as his vision was expansive.
This four-volume life of Marshall received wide acclaim upon its initial publication in 1920, winning the Pulitzer Prize that year, and makes fascinating reading for the lawyer, historian, and legal scholar.