|Senior Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit|
April 15, 1974 – March 11, 1986
|Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit|
July 20, 1971 – July 3, 1973
|Preceded by||J. Edward Lumbard|
|Succeeded by||Irving Kaufman|
|Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit|
September 10, 1959 – April 15, 1974
|Appointed by||Dwight D. Eisenhower|
|Preceded by||Harold Medina|
|Succeeded by||Ellsworth Van Graafeiland|
Henry Jacob Friendly
July 3, 1903
Elmira, New York
|Died||March 11, 1986 (aged 82)|
New York City, New York
|Education||Harvard University (AB)|
Harvard Law School (LLB)
Henry Jacob Friendly (July 3, 1903 – March 11, 1986) was an American lawyer and jurist best known for his tenure as a circuit judge on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
Education and career
Born in Elmira, New York, Friendly received an Artium Baccalaureus degree from Harvard College in 1923. He received a Bachelor of Laws from Harvard Law School in 1927. On June 23, 1927, the Harvard Crimson reported that Friendly was the first Harvard Law graduate to receive a degree summa cum laude. Felix Frankfurter, as a professor at Harvard Law School, sent his student Friendly to work as a clerk for Justice Louis Brandeis of the United States Supreme Court, where he served from 1927 to 1928. He was in private practice of law in New York City, New York from 1928 to 1959. He was a founding partner of Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP, where his law partners included George W. Ball and Melvin Steen. He was vice president and general counsel of Pan American World Airways in New York City from 1946 to 1959.
Federal judicial service
Friendly was nominated by President Dwight D. Eisenhower on March 10, 1959, to a seat on the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit vacated by Judge Harold Medina. He was confirmed by the United States Senate on September 9, 1959, and received his commission on September 10, 1959. He served as Chief Judge and as a member of the Judicial Conference of the United States from 1971 to 1973. He assumed senior status on April 15, 1974. He was a Judge of the Special Railroad Court from 1974 to 1986, serving as Presiding Judge from 1974 to 1986. His service was terminated on March 11, 1986, due to his death.
Friendly took his own life at age 82 on March 11, 1986, in his Park Avenue apartment in New York City. Police said they found three notes in the apartment, one addressed to his resident maid and two unaddressed notes. In all three notes, the judge talked about his distress at his wife's death, his declining health and his failing eyesight, according to a police spokesman. His wife, the former Sophie M. Stern, had died a year earlier. They had been married for 55 years. He was survived by a son and two daughters.
In a ceremony following Friendly's death, then-Chief Justice of the United States Warren E. Burger said, "In my 30 years on the bench, I have never known a judge more qualified to sit on the Supreme Court." At the same ceremony, Associate Justice Thurgood Marshall called Friendly "a man of the law." In a letter to the editor of The New York Times following Friendly's obituary, 2nd Circuit Judge Jon O. Newman called Friendly "quite simply the pre-eminent appellate judge of his era" who "authored the definitive opinions for the nation in each area of the law that he had occasion to consider." In a statement after Friendly's death, Judge Wilfred Feinberg, the 2nd Circuit's chief judge at the time, called Friendly "one of the greatest Federal judges in the history of the Federal bench." United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit Judge Richard A. Posner described Friendly as "the most distinguished judge in this country during his years on the bench."
Harvard Law School has a professorship named after Friendly. Paul C. Weiler, a Canadian constitutional law scholar, held it from 1993 to 2006; William J. Stuntz, a scholar of criminal law and procedure, held it from 2006 until his death in March 2011. The professorship is currently held by Carol S. Steiker, a specialist in criminal justice policy and capital punishment. The Federal Bar Council awarded Friendly a Certificate of Distinguished Judicial Service posthumously in 1986. The American Law Institute has an award named in memory of Friendly and endowed by his former law clerks.
Notable former law clerks
- David P. Currie (1960–1961), Edward H. Levi Distinguished Service Professor, University of Chicago Law School
- Peter B. Edelman (1961–1962), professor of law and co-director, joint degree in law and public policy, Georgetown Law Center
- Stephen R. Barnett (1962–1963), Elizabeth Josselyn Boalt Professor of Law, emeritus, Boalt Hall, University of California, Berkeley
- Pierre N. Leval (1963–1964), judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- Michael Boudin (1964–1965), chief judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit
- Robert M. Berger (1966-1967)
- Bruce A. Ackerman (1967–1968), Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science, Yale Law School
- Arthur Raymond Randolph (1969–1970), judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
- Walter Hellerstein (1970–1971), Francis Shackleford Distinguished Professor of Taxation Law, University of Georgia School of Law
- Martin Glenn (1971–1972), Judge, U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York
- Lawrence B. Pedowitz (1972–1973), partner, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
- Frederick T. Davis (1972–1973), partner, litigation department, Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, Paris
- William Curtis Bryson (1973–1974), judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit
- James R. Smoot (1974–1975), dean and professor of law, Cecil C. Humphreys School of Law, The University of Memphis
- Philip Bobbitt (1975–1976), Thomas M. Macioce Professor of Law, Columbia Law School
- Ruth Wedgwood (1976–1977), Edward B. Burling Professor of International Law and Diplomacy
- Theodore N. Mirvis (1976–1977), partner, litigation department, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz
- Merrick B. Garland (1977–1978), chief judge, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
- Mary I. Coombs (1978–1979), professor of law, University of Miami School of Law
- John Roberts (1979–1980), Chief Justice of the United States
- Marc Wolinsky (1980–1981), partner, litigation department, Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz 
- Gary Born (1981–1982), partner, Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr
- Jonathan R. Macey (1982–1983), Sam Harris Professor of Corporate Law, Corporate Finance and Securities Law, Yale Law School
- David J. Seipp (1982–1983), professor of law, Boston University School of Law
- Larry D. Kramer (1984–1985), president of The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation; on leave as Richard E. Lang professor of law and formerly the dean, Stanford Law School
- Louis Kaplow, professor of law Harvard Law School
- Thomas G. Dagger (1986)
- No Writer Attributed (June 23, 1927). "Over 200 Undergraduates Gain Honors in Graduation Awards". The Harvard Crimson. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- Newman, Jon O. (March 24, 1986). "From Learned Hand To Henry Friendly". The New York Times.
- "George Cleary, 90, Law Firm Founder". The New York Times. March 27, 1981.
- Friendly, Henry Jacob at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
- Norman, Michael (March 12, 1986). "Henry J. Friendly, Federal Judge In Court Of Appeals, Is Dead At 82". The New York Times.
- Johnson, Kirk (June 10, 1986). "A Solemn Tribute To Henry Friendly, A Quiet Giant Of The Appeals Bench". The New York Times.
- "Paul C. Weiler, Henry J. Friendly Professor of Law, Emeritus". Harvard Law School. Retrieved March 8, 2010.
- "William J. Stuntz". Harvard Law School. Archived from the original on September 13, 2008. Retrieved March 8, 2010.
- School, Harvard Law. "Carol S. Steiker - Harvard Law School". Harvard Law School.
- Metro Datelines (November 27, 1986). "Honors for 4 Judges And Ex-Prosecutor". The New York Times. Retrieved March 8, 2010.
- "Henry J. Friendly Medal". The American Law Institute. Archived from the original on April 20, 2015. Retrieved July 24, 2014.
- "Curriculum Vitae, David P. Currie". University of Chicago Law School. Archived from the original on December 27, 2005.
- "Peter B. Edelman". Georgetown Law. Archived from the original on June 12, 2008. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Stephen R. Barnett". Berkeley Law - Faculty Profiles. Archived from the original on June 11, 2007. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Pierre N. Leval". U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit.
- "The Honorable Michael Boudin". Boston University - School of Law. Archived from the original on April 21, 2006.
- "Judicial Clerkships". The Law School Record. The University of Chicago. 14 (2): 2. 1966.
- "Yale Law School | Bruce Ackerman". Yale Law School. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "A. Raymond Randolph". U.S. Court of Appeals - D.C. Circuit. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Walter Hellerstein, Francis Shackelford Distinguished Professor of Taxation Law". Georgia Law Faculty Profiles. Archived from the original on September 2, 2007.
- "Judge Martin Glenn, Profile". US Bankruptcy Court - Southern District of New York. June 9, 2005. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Lawrence B. Pedowitz". Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Archived from the original on February 9, 2013.
- "Private Practice Lawyer Profile for Frederick T. Davis". Martindale. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007.
- "Bryson, William Curtis". Judges of the United States Courts. Archived from the original on May 13, 2009. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Cecil C Humphreys School of Law :: Faculty :: University of Memphis". Law.memphis.edu. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "Philip Bobbitt". The Strauss Center.
- "Ruth Wedgwood". Johns Hopkins University, School Of Advanced International Studies.
- "Theodore N. Mirvis". Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Archived from the original on February 9, 2013.
- "Merrick B. Garland". U.S. Court of Appeals - D.C. Circuit.
- "Professor Mary Coombs". University of Miami School of Law. Retrieved May 16, 2010.
- "John G. Roberts, Jr" (PDF). United States Supreme Court. Archived from the original (PDF) on July 23, 2011.
- "Marc Wolinsky - Attorneys - Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz". Wlrk.com. Archived from the original on February 7, 2012. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- "Gary Born". WilmerHale. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- "Jonathan Macey assumes Sam Harris Professorship". Yale Bulletin and Calendar. February 4, 2005. Archived from the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- "David J. Seipp, Law Alumni Scholar, Professor of Law". Boston University School of Law. Retrieved December 15, 2012.
- "Larry Kramer" (PDF). Stanford Law School. Archived from the original (PDF) on February 13, 2006.
- "Louis Kaplow" (PDF). Harvard Law School.
- Henry Jacob Friendly at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
| Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
Ellsworth Van Graafeiland
J. Edward Lumbard
| Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit