The Contracts Prof Blog offers a day in history report for December 7. Much more of importance to the law has happened on December 7 than the Japanese attack upon Pearl Harbor.
First entry: from 43 B.C., dateline Rome: Republican Rome’s greatest lawyer, Marcus Tullius Cicero is murdered. Agents of Cicero's political rival Marc Antony commit the murder. Cicero's hands and head are cut off. Then, they are nailed to the rostrum of the Forum. The actions of Antony's agents seem to be very harsh retribution for a political rival.
On December 7, 1787, Delaware ratifies the United States Constitution, the first state to do so. The process continued through 1788, and it was nip and tuck as to whether or nor the document upon which we rely for our national government would be adopted.
Heading to the part of the world where I grew up, north Missouri, on December 7, 1869, brothers Jesse and Frank James hold up the Daviess County Savings Bank in Gallatin, Mo. The cashier is killed. Jesse and Frank escape. Reportedly, they got very little cash. Several years later, Jesse was shot and killed at his home in St. Joseph by Robert Ford. Frank was eventually tried for the crime in Daviess County and was acquitted.
On December 7, 1985, former U.S. Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart died at Hanover, New Hampshire. Justice Stewart is, perhaps, best remembered for his observation about pornography: "I know it when I see it."