The entrance to Samford University's campus in Homewood, Ala.
The entrance to Samford University’s campus in Homewood, Ala.

Being appointed to a seat on the United States Supreme Court is the pinnacle of the legal profession. So naturally, it’s a big deal for a law school to have one of their students rise to that level. As a matter of fact, fewer than 25 schools count U.S. Supreme Court justices among their alumni, according to FindTheBest.com, a site that helps students choose the college that best suits them.

The schools at the top of the list are ones you would probably expect.

Harvard has produced 15 Supreme Court justices, far more than Yale (6) and Columbia (4), which come in second and third. But the fourth school might stick out to people expecting the Ivy League to totally dominate the list — Samford University’s Cumberland Law School.

The Birmingham, Alabama college is the 11th oldest law school in the United States, having been founded in 1847.

Cumberland graduate Howell Edmunds Jackson was nominated to the Supreme Court by President Benjamin Harrison and served from February 18, 1893 – August 8, 1895.

Horace Harmon Lurton was nominated to the Supreme Court by President William Howard Taft and served from December 20, 1909 – July 12, 1914.

2014 marks exactly 100 years since Cumberland had a graduate sitting on the U.S. Supreme Court, but it has produced over 11,000 graduates total, including 5 United States Senators, 7 governors and 53 members of the United States House of Representatives.

Other notable graduates include Cordell Hull, who was Secretary of State under President Franklin D. Roosevelt, a Nobel Peace Prize recipient, and is widely considered to be the “Father of the United Nations;” and Oscar Adams, the first African-American Alabama Supreme Court justice.

The University of Alabama School of Law also made the list. FDR Supreme Court nominee Hugo Black graduated from the Tuscaloosa campus.

The full list of law schools that have produced U.S. Supreme Court Justices can be found below.


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