Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1948-49

These tables are derived from information contained in 221 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Nexis Uni search for decisions filed between September 1, 1948, and August 31, 1949.  The total of 221 decisions does not include various orders pertaining to petitions, motions, applications, and disciplinary matters involving lawyers and judges. 

Also excluded are Carley v. Jewett and Halvorson v. Connors because the justices split 3-3 in these two cases. 

In Ainsworth v. Berg the court found its original mandate (November 16, 1948) to be erroneous and issued a new full-length decision (February 15, 1949).  Both decisions are counted here.

After deciding In re Szperka’s Will, the justices granted a motion for rehearing and revoked their previous mandate, replacing it with a one-sentence ruling.  I have counted this case only once, though one could argue that it should be counted twice.

Kaestner v. Milwaukee Auto. Ins. Co. (254 Wis. 12); Robson v. Milwaukee Auto. Ins. Co. (254 Wis. 18); and Kaestner v. Milwaukee Auto. Ins. Co. (254 Wis. 17) were, in effect, consolidated—the latter two said to be ruled by the decision in the first.  Thus, I have counted the trio as a single case.

Justice Grover Broadfoot began serving in mid-November 1948.  His predecessor, Justice Elmer Barlow, died in June 1948.  This left the court with only six justices for cases decided from September until after Justice Broadfoot’s arrival.  He is listed as a participant in decisions beginning with those filed on December 15, 1948.

The tables are available as a complete set and by individual topic in the subsets listed below.

Four-to-Three Decisions
Decisions Arranged by Vote Split
Frequency of Justices in the Majority
Distribution of Opinion Authorship
Frequency of Agreement Between Pairs of Justices

About Alan Ball

Alan Ball is a Professor of History at Marquette University in Milwaukee, WI.


SCOWstats offers numerical analysis of the voting by Wisconsin Supreme Court justices on diverse issues over the past 91 years.

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