Charles E. Whittaker

Media Items
Personal Information
Born 
Friday, February 22, 1901
Died 
Monday, November 26, 1973
Childhood Location 
Kansas
Childhood Surroundings 
Kansas
Religion 
Methodist
Ethnicity 
English
Father 
Charles Whittaker
Father's Occupation 
Farm owner
Mother 
Ida Miller
Family Status 
Lower-middle
Position 
Associate Justice
Seat 
7
Nominated By 
Eisenhower
Commissioned on 
Friday, March 22, 1957
Sworn In 
Monday, March 25, 1957
Left Office 
Saturday, March 31, 1962
Reason For Leaving 
Disabled
Length of Service 
5 years, 0 months, 6 days
Home 
Missouri
Charles E. Whittaker
The Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States (Artist: C. J. Fox)
Biography 

Charles Whittaker rose from humble origins to serve on the nation's highest court. He was appointed a federal trial judge in 1954; in 1956, he was elevated to the Court of Appeals. Whittaker was well-regarded as a judge; and that persauded Eisenhower to move him to the major league. Whittaker experienced a nervous breakdown on the bench. He found decision-making excruciating and almost impossible. Following his doctor's orders, he retired. As one scholar summarized it, "his tenure was distinguished only by its brevity and by his own inability to develop a coherent judicial philosophy apart from the orthodox political conservatism of the Republican Middle West."

Clerkships 
Clerk Law School Terms Clerked
D. Lawrence Gunnels Wash U (1960) 1961
Jerome B. Libin Michigan (1959) 1959
Patrick F. McCartan Notre Dame (1959) 1959
William C. Canby, Jr. Minnesota (1956) 1958
Heywood H. Davis Kansas (1958) 1958
Kenneth W. Dam Chicago (1957) 1957
Alan C. Kohn Wash U (1955) 1957

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Cite this Page
Charles E. Whittaker. The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law. 04 April 2014. <http://www.oyez.org/justices/charles_e_whittaker>.
Charles E. Whittaker, The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, http://www.oyez.org/justices/charles_e_whittaker (last visited April 4, 2014).
"Charles E. Whittaker," The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, accessed April 4, 2014, http://www.oyez.org/justices/charles_e_whittaker.