2011 Annual Report

::  2011 Board of Directors Meeting  ::
Atlanta, Georgia
Loews Atlanta Hotel
Ravinia Room, 7:30-10:00 pm

2011 Agenda, 2010 Minutes, 2011 Committee Reports (pdf)

Supplementary Board Materials

Results of Elections

Bruce H. Mann was elected president; Michael Grossberg was elected president-elect; Constance Backhouse became immediate-past-president. Sally Hadden continues as secretary, and Craig Klafter continues as treasurer.

R. B. Bernstein of New York Law School, Christian G. Fritz of the University of New Mexico, Dan Hamilton of the University of Illinois, Linda K. Kerber of the University of Iowa, and Amalia Kessler of Stanford University were elected to three-year terms on the Board of Directors. They replace Martha S. Jones of the University of Michigan, Michael Lobban of Queen Mary College, University of London (UK), Matthew C. Mirow of Florida International University (Miami), Rebecca J. Scott of the University of Michigan, and ohn Wertheimer of Davidson College, whose terms have expired.

Nominating Committee
Lucy E. Salyer was elected to a three-year term on the Nominating Committee. She replaces Christina Duffy Burnett of Columbia University, whose term has expired.

Prizes and Awards

Cromwell Research Fellowships

William Nelson Cromwell Research Fellowships were awarded to: Cynthia Greenlee-Donnell, a Ph.D. candidate in History at Duke University for a work currently entitled: “Daughters of the Nadir: Black Girls and Childhood on Trial in South Carolina Courts, 1885-1905”; Melissa Hayes, who recently completed her Ph.D. in History at Northern Illinois University and is currently an instructor at Shawnee Community College, for a project currently entitled: “Sex in the Witness Stand: Legal Culture, Community, and Out-of- Wedlock Sexual Governance in the Nineteenth-Century Midwest”; Jeffrey Kahn, a Ph.D. candidate in Socio-Cultural Anthropology at the University of Chicago, for a work currently entitled: “Cracking Sovereignty: Haitian Migration and the Transformation of U.S. Immigration Law, 1974-1994”; and Kimberley Reilly, who recently completed her Ph.D. in History at the University of Chicago and is currently a postdoctoral fellow and lecturer in History at the University of Baltimore, for a work currently entitled: “Bonds of Affection: Marriage in Law and Culture, 1870-1920.”

Preyer Scholars

This year’s Preyer Memorial Committee chose two Preyer scholars:Kevin Arlyck (New York University) for his paper “Plaintiffs v. Privateers:  Litigation and Foreign Affairs in the Federal Courts, 1816-1825”;Anne Fleming (University of Pennsylvania) for her paper “The Borrower’s Tale: A History of Poor Debtors in Lochner Era New York City”; and Michael Schoeppner (University of Florida) for his paper “Atlantic Emancipations and Originalism: An Atlantic Genealogy of Dred Scott.”

Cromwell Article Prize

The first Cromwell Article prize was awarded to:
Krishanti Vignarajah for her article “The Political Roots of Judicial Legitimacy: Explaining the Enduring Validity of the Insular Cases,” Univerisity of Chicago Law Review, 77 (2010) 781–845.

Cromwell Dissertation Prize

The Cromwell Dissertation prize was awarded to:
Cynthia Nicoletti for “The Great Question of the War: The Legal Status of Secession in the Aftermath of the American Civil War, 1865-1869”—a dissertation submitted for the Ph.D. degree in history at the University of Virginia in 2010.

Cromwell Book Prize

The Cromwell Book Prize was awarded to:
Mark Brilliant (University of California, Berkeley) for The Color of America Has Changed: How Racial Diversity Shaped Civil rights Reform in California, 1941-1978, published by the Oxford University Press in 2010.

Surrency Prize

This year‘s Surrency Prize was awarded to:
to Michelle McKinley of the University of Oregon for “Fractional Freedoms: Slavery, Legal Activism, and Ecclesiastical Courts in Colonial Lima, 1593-1689,” which appeared in Law and History Review, 28 (2010) 749–790.

Sutherland Prize

This year’s Sutherland Prize was awarded to:
N. G. Jones of Cambridge University for: “Wills, Trusts and Trusting from the Statute of Uses to Lord Nottingham,”Journal of Legal History, 31 (2010) 273–98.

Reid Book Prize

The John Phillip Reid Prize for the best book in legal history published in English during the previous the calendar year was awarded to:
Christopher Tomlins for Freedom Bound: Law, Labor, and Civic Identity in Colonizing English America, 1580-1865, published by Cambridge University Press in 2010.


American Society for Legal History
Board of Directors
Minutes of the November 8, 2011 Meeting
Atlanta, Georgia

Officers and Board Members Present (in alphabetical order): Greg Ablavsky, Constance Backhouse (President), Mary Bilder, Holly Brewer, Tomiko Brown-Nagin, Lyndsay Campbell, Risa Goluboff, Sally Hadden (Secretary), Martha Jones, Craig Klafter (Treasurer), David Lieberman, Michael Lobban, Bruce Mann (President-elect), Maeva Marcus (Immediate Past President), Matthew Mirow, Rebecca Scott, Victoria Saker Woeste, John Wertheimer, and Charles Zelden.

Also Present (in alphabetical order): Michael Churgin, Daniel Ernst, Thomas Gallanis, John Gordan, Sarah Barringer Gordon, Thomas Green, Michael Grossberg, Craig Joyce, Patricia Minter, Rayman Solomon, David Tanenhaus, and Christopher Tomlins.

The meeting was called to order at 8:10pm.

1.  Approval of Minutes.  The minutes of the November 2010 meeting in Dallas, Texas, were approved.

2.  Secretary’s Report.  Sally Hadden presented, and the Board accepted, the Secretary’s report.

3.  Treasurer’s Report.  Craig Klafter presented, and the Board accepted, the Treasurer’s report. The board discussed the high (relative to the revenues anticipated) revenues from Cambridge University Press as a result of their publication of Law and History Review and what such funds might be used to address. CUP representative Laura Etheridge has indicated the LHR is one of the fastest growing journals (in terms of subscriptions) that they currently have, due to institutional bundling of journal subscriptions and international marketing. One possible use for the additional revenue might be to support more of the costs associated with receptions at the annual meeting, which are currently met by local law firms, local law schools, and the association.

4.  Report of the Committee on Conferences and the Annual Meeting.  Craig Joyce presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report.  Joyce stressed that volunteers to hold future meetings are always welcome. The board discussed arrangements for the 2013 South Florida annual meeting, including outreach to Latin American scholars, translations for non-English panels, and other efforts such as a subcommittee for Spanish-language panels as part of the program committee.

5.  Report of the Advisory Committee on the Cromwell Prizes.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.  John Gordan offered some background on trustees of the Cromwell Foundation and discussed the Foundation’s concern about the relatively low number of entries in the articles and dissertations prize categories. Marcus and Goluboff commented on the very high quality of the submissions; Saker Woeste noted that the Law & Society Association has similar issues with its prize committees (book prize easiest because publishers submit, fewer entries for dissertation and article prizes). Tomlins noted that assembling a list of university presses’ prize coordinators might make it easy to contact them from year to year with notices of the deadline. Gordon noted that we might wish to take out quarter-page ads in scholarly magazines and newsletters to highlight both the winners and the ASLH fellowships and prizes. Gordan asked whether essays in anthologies and festschrifts are eligible; their status appears to be unclear.

6.  Report of the Committee on Documentary Preservation.  Michael Churgin presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report.  The National Archives released the Nixon deposition today.

7.  Report of the Finance Committee.  Thomas Gallanis presented orally, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report. He indicated that at the meeting (held today) the Finance Committee reviewed and approved Klafter’s third quarter report for 2010; proposed a FY 2012 budget which includes funding for the Projects and Proposals committee; and reviewed the performance and asset allocation of the endowment, which remains unchanged.

8.  Report of the Committee on the Future of the Society.  Bruce Mann presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report. After extended board discussion regarding the possibility of recognizing donors to the endowment campaign, Saker Woeste moved, and Lyndsay Campbell seconded, a motion to 1) compile a list of donors from the extant endowment campaign data, and 2) take up the matter by email to consider what form recognition might take, pending a review of the completeness of the data. The motion passed.

9.  Report of H-Law.  Charles Zelden presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report. Zelden reported on the transfer of editorial and administrative duties to others on the H-Law board, following Chris Waldrep’s stroke two weeks ago.

10.  Report of the History of the Society Committee. Craig Joyce presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report. Joyce provided an overview of the committee’s activities (oral histories about the formation and early history of the society; document preservation and visits to our records on deposit at the University of Illinois archives).

11.  Report of the Committee on Honors.  Chris Tomlins presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report.

12.  Report of the Committee on the Hurst Memorial Fund.  The Board accepted the committee’s report. Ray Solomon indicated that the change in deans at University of Wisconsin has not diminished their enthusiasm for the summer Hurst Institutes.

13. Report of the Internationalization Subcommittee for Projects and Proposals was advanced on the agenda. Chris Tomlins presented, and the Board accepted, the subcommittee report. There was general discussion about the panel swap with the Australia-New Zealand legal history conference, and the relatively low response rate to the CFP distributed by Tomlins in many venues.

14.  Report of the Projects and Proposals Committee was advanced on the agenda. Rayman Solomon presented, and the Board accepted, the committee report. He provided an overview of the allocations made for the allocated funds (some of the $75,000 is not earmarked at present), in particular, funds allocated for the Hurst Institute convenor, the oral history project of the History of the Society committee, the European Society of Comparative Legal History for a panel swap, the Australia-New Zealand Legal History society for a panel swap, the Israel Legal History society for a panel swap, and for the travel of international & junior scholars to travel to this meeting (allocated by the program committee). He discussed several possible funding options, included possible conferences and small dissertation travel grants. Scott and Jones described the successful April conference at the University of Michigan partially funded by the P&P committee funds.

15.  Reports of Law and History Review.  The Board accepted the committee’s report. A motion authorizing the incoming President to send letters of appreciation to Dean John V. White and Dean Christopher Hudgins of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, passed. Bilder moved, and Saker Woeste seconded, a motion to send a letter of thanks on behalf of the Board, to David Tanenhaus, in recognition of his many years of service as editor in chief of the Law and History Review. The motion passed.

16. Report of the Local Arrangements Committee. The Board accepted the committee’s report.

17.  Report of the Membership Committee.  Patricia Minter presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report. Scott inquired about paper renewal notices and their connection to the online journal renewal system. Minter explained that the CUP system is not perfect, there continue to be issues with its accuracy, and that CUP considers the online renewal process fixed and immovable. Saker Woeste noted that casual users of the CUP website find it awkward, and that the membership committee might wish to do screen captures and post a “how to sign up for ASLH membership” for dummies to assist those who find the CUP website difficult.

18.  Report of the Nominating Committee.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.  The Secretary reported the results of the annual election:
a.  For seats on the Board of Directors, Richard Bernstein, Christian Fritz, Dan Hamilton, Linda Kerber, and Amalia Kessler stand elected.
b.  For seats on the Nominating Committee, Lucy Salyer stands elected.

19.  Report of the Studies in Legal History Series was advanced on the agenda. Michael Lobban presented, and the Board accepted, the editors’ report. Brewer offered a presentation of the Studies in Legal History website.

20. Report of the Publications Committee.  Bruce Mann presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report.

21. Report of the Preyer Memorial Committee.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.

22.  Report of the 2010 Program Committee.  The Board accepted the committee’s report. Backhouse noted that there were far too many worthy proposals to become part of the annual meeting program, and suggested that future program committees consider the possibility of poster sessions or pecha kucha sessions to include more scholars on the program.

23.  Report of the Committee on the Reid Book Award.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.

24.  Report on the Committee on Research Fellowships and Awards.  Michael Grossberg presented, and the Board accepted, the committee’s report.  Grossberg noted the low number of submissions for the Cromwell fellowships (14 submissions, 4 awarded). He also described the committee’s decision about the Paul Murphy memorial fund, which did not have enough money to become a full endowment but that needed to be spent in a timely fashion; the committee determined that two one-time book awards in American civil liberties would be awarded in Murphy’s honor.

25.  Report of the Surrency Prize Committee.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.

26.  Report of the Sutherland Prize Committee.  The Board accepted the committee’s report.

27.  New Business.  After excusing all non-Board members from the room, Backhouse described that the Society needed a service award, and that the idea had been approved by the executive committee of creating one, naming it in honor of Craig Joyce. If approved, there would be a new standing committee established to consider recipients every few years. Backhouse moved, and Zelden seconded, the creation of the award.

The meeting was adjourned at 10:25 pm.

Respectfully submitted,

Sally E. Hadden
ASLH Secretary