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Buchanan v. Warley

Significance, Further Readings


William Warley


William H. Buchanan

Appellant's Claim

Defendant illegally refused to pay full contracted price for a home lot. He claimed a city ordinance prohibiting blacks from living in white neighborhoods deprived him of property's full value.

Chief Lawyers for Appellant

Moorfield Storey, Clayton B. Blakey

Chief Lawyers for Appellee

Pendleton Beckley, Stuart Chevalier

Justices for the Court

Louis D. Brandeis, John Hessin Clarke, William R. Day (writing for the Court), Oliver Wendell Holmes, Joseph McKenna, James Clark McReynolds, Mahlon Pitney, Willis Van Devanter, Edward Douglass White

Justices Dissenting



Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

5 November 1917


Outlawed local ordinances preventing blacks from moving into white neighborhoods as unconstitutional interference with private property sales between whites and blacks.

Related Cases

  • Plessy v. Ferguson, 163 U.S. 537 (1896).
  • Corrigan v. Buckley, 271 U.S. 323 (1926).
  • Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 347 U.S. 483 (1954).

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1883 to 1917