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Marsh v. Chambers - Significance, Is There An American Civil Religion?, A Nation In Change, Impact, Further Readings

nebraska petitioner lawyer decision


Frank Marsh, Nebraska State Treasurer, et al.


Ernest Chambers

Petitioner's Claim

That prayer led by a publicly paid chaplain to open Nebraska legislature sessions should not be found in violation of the First Amendment's Establishment Clause due to its historical and secular role.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Shanler D. Cronk

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

Herbert J. Friedman

Justices for the Court

Harry A. Blackmun, Warren E. Burger (writing for the Court), Sandra Day O'Connor, Lewis F. Powell, Jr., William H. Rehnquist, Byron R. White

Justices Dissenting

William J. Brennan, Jr., Thurgood Marshall, John Paul Stevens


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

5 July 1983


Upheld the state of Nebraska's claim and overturned two lower courts' decisions prohibiting legislative prayer and its public funded support.

Related Cases

  • Everson v. Board of Education of Ewing Township, 330 U.S. 1 (1947).
  • Lemon v. Kurtzman, 403 U.S. 602 (1971).
  • Lynch v. Donnelly, 465 U.S. 668 (1984).
  • County of Allegheny v. ACLU, 492 U.S. 573 (1989).
Martinez v. Bynum - Significance, An 8-1 Decision, Marshall Dissents, Impact, Related Cases [next] [back] Margaret Kelly Michaels Trial and Appeal: 1987 1993 - From Questions To Indictments, Michaels On Trial, A Legal Rescue, Suggestions For Further Reading

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