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Bigelow v. Virginia

Significance, Impact


Jeffrey C. Bigelow


Commonwealth of Virginia

Appellant's Claim

That the Virginia statute banning abortion advertising under which he was convicted was an unconstitutional violation of his First Amendment rights.

Chief Lawyers for Appellant

Melvin L. Wulf and John C. Lowe

Chief Lawyer for Appellee

D. Patrick Lacy, Jr.

Justices for the Court

Harry A. Blackmun (writing for the Court), William J. Brennan, Jr., Warren E. Burger, William O. Douglas, Thurgood Marshall, Lewis F. Powell, Jr., Potter Stewart

Justices Dissenting

William H. Rehnquist, Byron R. White


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

16 June 1975


Reversed Virginia Supreme Court decision upholding Bigelow's conviction for running an abortion advertisement in the newspaper he managed.

Related Cases

  • Valentine v. Chrestensen, 316 U.S. 52 (1942).
  • Roe v. Wade, 413 U.S. 113 (1973).
  • Virginia State Board of Pharmacy v. Virginia Citizens Consumer Council, 425 U.S. 748 (1976).
  • Carey v. Population Services International, 431 U.S. 678 (1977).

Further Readings

  • Craig, Barbara H., and David M. O'Brien. Abortion and American Politics. New York: Chatham House, 1993.
  • Crawford, Alan Pell. "One Hand Clapping." ADWEEK Eastern Edition, July 12, 1993, p. 22.
  • Hall, Kermit L., ed., Oxford Companion to the Supreme Court of the United States. Oxford University Press, 1992.
  • New York Times. June 17, 1975.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1973 to 1980