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Hobbs, M. K. (ed.) / The Wisconsin alumni magazine
Volume 27, Number 10 (Aug. 1926)

Richards, H. S.
The Law School,   pp. 329-330


Page 329


August, 1926,                                                           
                  2
The Law School
          By H. S. RICHARDS
          Dean of the Law School
THE Law School of the University
   has just completed its fifty-seventh
year. During that period a large body of
graduates have gone out from its class
rooms, and have taken an active and
honorable part in the life of their com-
munities and in upholding the best tra--
ditions of their profession. A large num-
ber of its graduates have won distinction
and honor in the service of government,
asjudgs     triaLand-ape1late-courts,
both federal and state; as district at-
torneys and as legislators.
  The beginnings of the School were
humble. Organized when frontier con-
ditions still prevailed, its first teachers
were judges and members of the local
bar; its habitation, a committee room
in the State Capitol; its course of study,
one year, and its educational require-
ments both for admission and gradua-
tion were negligible. It was fortunate in
the personnel of its faculty; such men as
Vilas, Orton, Carpenter, Sloan, Spooner,
Bryant, Olin, Jones, and Bashford, who
gave character and distinction to the bar
in their generation, were its teachers.
  The School met the conditions of its
day,. and supplied the training requisite
for a professional career in new and
simply organized communities. It has
met and even anticipated the new de-
mands made on it by the growing com-
plexity of social and economic life. The
corner-stone of the present building was
laid in 1891. The location of the new
building was a matter of controversy.
By the narrow majority of one vote, the
building was located on the campus, in-
   H, S. RICHARDS
Dean of the Law School
Sstead 6f on the Capitol Square. The
decision was critical, and determined the
school's destiny in a way perhaps not
clearly foreseen at the time. It meant'
that the Schpol was to be a part of the
University, and not a mere appendage;
it meant that the law was to be studied
in a scientific manner; it meant the
recognition of the large and essential
  part which the other social sciences
  history, economics, political science, and
  philosophy, play in the understanding
  and development of our social and eco-
  nomic institutions of which the law is
  but the concrete expression. It meant
  also that 'if the law is to be studied
  scientifically, its students must bring to
  it a training and intellectual maturity
  not focind in high school graduates.
---These-changesý-did-not-come-at, once-
  with the location of the Law Building
  on the campus, but that location made
  their coming inevitable.
    It should be a matter of pride to its
  graduates that the Law School has not
  merely given a belated acceptance to
  standards essential to a scientific study
  of the law, but it has fought for them and
  led the van in putting them into prac-
  tice. Wisconsin was one of the earliest
  schools to extend its law course to three
  years. In 1907 it required all students
  entering as candidates for a degree to
  have had in addition to a high school
  education at least two years of college
  work in a recognized college or univer-
  sity. At the time of the adoption of this
  rule, only four law schools, Harvard,
  Columbia, Pennsylvania, and Chicago,
  required more than a high school edu-
  cation for admission.  Twenty years
  later the AmericanLaw School Associa-
  tion made this rule a prerequisite for
      . L. ^-^k~ ~.1.;" *k.. . ."-^--
  In 1921 the American Bar Association
declared that two years in college prior
to legal stud  ought to be the irreduc-
The Law Building
.329


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