|Henry J. Abraham with William H. Rehnquist|
Henry J. Abraham (left) with Chief Justice William Rehnquist. Chief Justice Rehnquist was the guest lecturer at the annual Abraham Lectureship April 2003. (Courtesy Robert F. Turner)
|Occupation||Professor, Author, Lecturer|
|Spouse(s)||Mildred K. Abraham (married 1954)|
|Children||Philip F. Abraham and Peter D. Abraham|
Henry J. Abraham, Ph.D., James Hart Professor of Government Emeritus at the University of Virginia, is one of the foremost scholars on the judiciary and constitutional law in the United States. He is the author of 13 books, most in multiple editions, and more than 100 articles on the U.S. Supreme Court, judicial appointments, judicial process, and civil rights and liberties.
Immigration to U.S.; War Service 
In 1937, Abraham immigrated alone from Germany to the United States during the rise of the Nazi regime. His parents, Liesel Dreyfuss Abraham and Fred Abraham, and brother Otto followed in 1939. The family settled in Pittsburgh, PA. He served in World War II as an enlisted man and officer in U.S. Army Intelligence on duty in Western and Central Europe. He received two Battle Stars and the Commendation Medal. When the war ended in the European Theater, Abraham, who is fluent in German, French, and English, and adequate in Danish, served in a military unit that gathered evidence for use in the Nuremberg War Crimes Trials.
In 1948 Abraham graduated from Kenyon College in Ohio with a bachelor’s degree with highest honors in political science, first in his class, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. He earned his M.A. in public law and government from Columbia University in 1949, and he received his Ph.D. in political science from the University of Pennsylvania in 1952, where he began his teaching career. Abraham served as a Kenyon College Trustee for six years (1987-1993.)
After serving in the University of Pennsylvania's Department of Political Science for 23 years (1943–1972), Abraham became a chaired professor in the Department of Government and Foreign Affairs at the University of Virginia in 1972. A pioneer in comparative judicial studies, he served as a Fulbright Scholar in Denmark at the Universities of Copenhagen and Aarhus, where he was instrumental in establishing the country's first Department of Political Science. He lectured throughout the world under U.S.I.A. auspices. He retired from full-time teaching in 1997 after nearly a half-century in the classroom, but he continues to teach in lifelong learning programs in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Notable Students 
During the span of his career, Abraham has taught many notable students, including U.S. Senator Arlen Specter (D.-Penn.); Judge Edward Roy Becker, U.S. Third Circuit Court of Appeals; Judge Susan J. Dlott, Chief Judge, U.S. District Court in Ohio; Judge John Roll, U.S. District Court in Arizona; Judge Charles R. Weiner, U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania; Judge Mark S. Davis, U.S. District Court in Virginia; Judge Stefan R. Underhill, U.S. District Court in Connecticut; Chief Justice Leroy Rountree Hassell, Sr., Virginia Supreme Court; Justice Elizabeth B. Lacy, Virginia Supreme Court; Chief Justice Ruth McGregor, Arizona Supreme Court; Author and Professor Larry J. Sabato; Author and Professor Barbara A. Perry; Author and Professor David A. Yalof; Author and Professor John Dinan; Author and Professor Walter Markham; Attorney and PA State Rep. Mark B. Cohen; David Brown, Mayor of Charlottesville, VA; Attorney Robert Gelfman; Attorney J. Reuben Clark; Attorney Peter Dodson; Attorney David Gogal; Attorney and Media Executive Steven Fadem; Author and Law Professor Vincent M. Bonventre; Author and Professor Stanley C. Brubaker; Author and Professor Gary L. McDowell; Author and Professor William F. Connelly; Author and Professor James Staab; Author and Professor Mary Kweit; Author and Professor Robert Kweit; Author and Professor David Cingranelli; Author and Professor F. Graham Lee; Author and Professor James J. Magee; Author and Professor Bruce Allen Murphy; Author and Professor Robert Sitkoff; Businessman Victor Barnett; Clerk Jan Horbaly, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit; Author John Aloysius Farrell, the biographer of Clarence Darrow; and many other distinguished judges, professors, authors, business leaders, and attorneys. Senator Specter and Judge Becker were members of the University of Pennsylvania debate team that Abraham coached.
Abraham's 13 books include The Judicial Process: An Introductory Analysis of the Courts of the United States, England, and France, 7th ed.; Freedom and the Court: Civil Rights and Liberties in the United States, 8th ed., with Barbara A. Perry; Justices, Presidents, Senators: A History of U.S. Supreme Court Appointments from Washington to Bush II, 5th ed., and The Judiciary: The Supreme Court in the Governmental Process, 10th ed.
Awards and honors 
In 1983 Abraham was awarded the University of Virginia’s most prestigious recognition, the Thomas Jefferson Award, and in 1993 he received the First Lifetime Achievement Award of the Organized Section on Law and Courts of the American Political Science Association. The Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) awarded him their 2007 Annual Award for Americanism at their national headquarters, Constitution Hall, in Washington, D.C. Other awards include the recipient of the first $1,000 award for "Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching," University of Pennsylvania, 1959; Phi Beta Kappa National Vistiting Scholar, 1970–1971; "IMP" Society, Outstanding Contribution to the University Community Award for 1978, University of Virginia; "Z" Society, Distinguished Faculty Award for 1978, the University of Virginia; the 1983 Distinguished Service Award, Virginia Social Science Association; and the 1986 University of Virginia Alumni Association Distinguished Professor Award. Two scholarships were given in Abraham's name at the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School and its Department of Political Science. He is listed in Who's Who in the World, and Who's Who in America, and others.
In his honor, Professor Abraham’s former students and colleagues established the Abraham Distinguished Lecture Series at the University of Virginia School of Law in 1997 under the auspices of the Thomas Jefferson Center for the Protection of Free Expression.
Abraham Lecturers have included Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist of the U.S. Supreme Court; Judge J. Harvie Wilkinson III, 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals; Chief Justice Leroy Rountree Hassell, Sr., Virginia Supreme Court; General William K. Suter Clerk, U.S. Supreme Court; Dean and Professor John Jeffries, University of Virginia School of Law; Dean Kenneth Starr, Pepperdine University School of Law; Theodore Olson, attorney with Gibson, Dunn, and Crutcher; Professor Linda Greenhouse, Yale Law School; Joan Biskupic, USA Today; Jan Crawford Greenburg, ABC News; and Professor Tinsley Yarbrough, East Carolina University. Associate Justice Antonin Scalia of the U.S. Supreme Court was the 2010 Abraham Lecturer. Professor Nadine Strossen, American Civil Liberties Union President (1991–2008), delivered the Abraham Lecture on April 1, 2011.
Most recently, in 2013 the Virginia Social Science Association has named their "Best Graduate Student Paper Award", a distinction awarded at their annual conference, after Abraham.
Personal Interests 
Abraham is an avid fan of his adopted city’s teams—the Pittsburgh Pirates and the Pittsburgh Steelers. He is also an opera aficionado, a philatelist, an inveterate traveler, a connoisseur of single malt scotch and fine chocolate, and he loves spending time with his four grandchildren.
 C-SPAN page providing links to Henry Abraham's nine appearances on the network.
 Freedom and the Court Page with Bio
 The Judicial Process Page
 NYU Press Award Mention
 Book Review
 Backstory with the American History Boys, transcript of "Scales of Justice"
 Backstory with the American History Boys, podcast of "Scales of Justice"