Lincoln and New York

May 31, 2011
May 31, 2011

Making Our Democracy Work: A Judge's View

Stephen Breyer
Tue, 05/31/2011 - 18:30
Tue, May 31st, 2011 | 7:30 pm

How does the Constitution, an 18th-century document, relate to and dictate the laws of a 21st-century society? Through the analysis of past cases, including those concerning slavery, the Cherokee Indians, and detainees at Guantánamo Bay, Justice Stephen Breyer examines the Court’s arduous—and often turbulent—journey to establish its legitimacy as guardian of the Constitution. Having earned the public’s confidence, he expounds how the Court can continue promoting a workable democracy going forward.

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Upcoming Seminars

Upcoming Events

New-York Historical Society
The Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History Seminar

Presented in person at the New-York Historical Society

The Bonnie and Richard Reiss Graduate Institute for Constitutional History is pleased to announce its fall 2021 seminar for advanced graduate students and junior faculty:

Constitutions in Conflict: Proslavery versus Antislavery


Emancipation Proclamation

October 07, 2005
October 16, 2005

Fascimile of the Emancipation Proclamation

October 20, 2005
March 26, 2006

Legacies: Contemporary Artists Reflect on Slavery

June 16, 2006
January 07, 2007

Examination Days: The New York African Free School Collection


In 1787 the New York Manumission Society created the African Free School with the primary goal of educating black children. It began as a single-room schoolhouse with about 40 students, the majority of whom were the children of slaves, and taught them a variety of practical subjects. By the time it was absorbed into the New York City public school system in 1835, it had educated thousands of children, including many who went on to become notable leaders.
With the support of the Russell Sage Foundation, the New-York Historical Society has launched a comprehensive website, showcasing actual examples of students’ work from 1816 through 1826, offering an unparalleled glimpse into the little-known history of African-American life in New York City in the late-18th and early-19th centuries as well as pedagogical techniques used at that time.
Click here to view the full collection.



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