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April 19, 2010

Judge William Wayne Justice’s papers donated to the Tarlton Law Library

The University of Texas School of Law is pleased to announce that the family of Judge William Wayne Justice has given his papers to the Law School’s Tarlton Law Library. The William Wayne Justice Papers will become a portion of the permanent archives housed by the library in late April 2010.

The Tarlton Law Library actively collects archival material relevant to the history of the Law School, including the papers of former deans, faculty, and distinguished alumni. The William Wayne Justice Papers will be available to researchers upon the material’s arrival. The collection includes material from Justice’s early years through his long judicial career. The over ninety linear feet of material documents a distinguished career of service and integrity. The gift also includes Justice’s writing desk, photographs, memorabilia, and awards, which will be displayed in the library after the completion of the current renovation.

“It is an honor, a privilege, and, above all, an inspiration for us to be the home of the papers of a genuine hero, a champion of justice,” said Law School Dean Larry Sager, who officially announced the gift April 16. Earlier that day at the Texas State Cemetery, a cenotaph was dedicated in honor of Justice’s significant contributions to Texas history.

“During forty-one years on the federal bench in Texas, William Wayne Justice led a courageous defense of civil rights and constitutional freedoms,” said Terry Martin, the library’s interim director of research. “His rulings transformed the legal landscape of Texas and gave its poor and less powerful citizens a greater measure of justice. He was aptly named. In the archives of the Tarlton Law Library his papers now join those of other significant figures in Texas legal history, including Justice Tom C. Clark, Dean W. Page Keeton, and Professor Charles Alan Wright. We expect this collection of drafts, correspondence, speeches, and other material will prove to be an invaluable resource for those studying the dramatic changes in law and society in the latter part of the twentieth century.”

The Tarlton Law Library, working with the William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law, has launched a website introducing the collection with selected digitized material. After the collection has been processed, the website will be further developed and will include additional digitized material. Please visit

Related Links:

Tarlton Law Library

William Wayne Justice Center for Public Interest Law

Contact: Elizabeth Haluska-Rausch, Head, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, Tarlton Law Library,, 512-232-3802