Louis Wescott Myers

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Louis Wescott Myers
20th Chief Justice of California
In office
April 9, 1924 – January 1, 1926
Appointed byGovernor Friend Richardson
Preceded byCurtis D. Wilbur
Succeeded byWilliam H. Waste
Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court
In office
January 15, 1923 – April 8, 1924
Appointed byGovernor William Stephens
Preceded byCurtis D. Wilbur
Succeeded byJohn W. Shenk
Personal details
Born(1872-09-06)September 6, 1872
Lake Mills, Wisconsin, U.S.
DiedFebruary 15, 1960(1960-02-15) (aged 87)
Beverly Hills, California, U.S.
Blanche Brown
(m. 1901; death 1943)
ChildrenElizabeth Myers
John Wescott Myers
Alma materUniversity of Wisconsin-Madison (B.L.)
University of Wisconsin Law School (LL.B.)

Louis Wescott Myers (September 6, 1872 – February 15, 1960) was the 20th Chief Justice of California.

Education and judicial career[edit]

Myers was born in Lake Mills, Wisconsin, to Jesse Hall Myers and Elizabeth Louise Wescott. Myers was educated in the public schools, and earned a bachelor's and a law degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he was Phi Beta Kappa.[1] He practiced law first in Madison, Wisconsin, with the firm of Spooner, Sanborn & Kerr, and afterwards for several years in Chicago, Illinois with Jesse A. and Henry R. Baldwin. In 1898, he moved to Los Angeles, California and maintained a law firm. In 1913, he was appointed to a vacancy on the Los Angeles County Superior Court. He was elected in 1914 and re-elected in 1920.[2][3]

On January 15, 1923, Governor William Stephens appointed Myers as Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of California to fill a vacancy when Curtis D. Wilbur was named Chief Justice.[4][5] In April 1924, Governor Friend Richardson named Myers as Chief Justice to again replace Wilbur, who became the Secretary of the Navy.[6] In October 1924, Myers ran unopposed and was elected for the remainder of Curtis' term, until January 1927.[7] Myers served in that post until resigning as of January 1, 1926.[2][8][9]

O'Melveny & Myers[edit]

Following his tenure as Chief Justice, Myers joined a Los Angeles law firm run by Henry W. O'Melveny. Myers' name was added to the firm, which by 1939 became known as O'Melveny & Myers.[10] He specialized in appellate practice. In 1938, Myers argued before the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of Mackay Radio the case of NLRB v. Mackay Radio & Telegraph Co., 304 U.S. 333 (1938).

Honors and awards[edit]

In 1925, Myers received an honorary degree of LL.D. from the University of Southern California.[11][12] In 1926, he was awarded another honorary degree by the University of California.[13]

Personal life[edit]

On November 27, 1901, he married Blanche Brown (July 26, 1874 – May 1, 1943) of Michigan; they had at least two children: Elizabeth Myers, and test pilot John Wescott Myers.[14][15][12] Louis was an avid fisherman, and in 1951 published a short book, An Incompleat Angler.[11][16]


  1. ^ University of Wisconsin Catalogue. Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin. 1893. p. 213.
  2. ^ a b "Supreme Court Bench is Full". Madera Tribune (30). California Digital Newspaper Collection. United Press Dispatch. 8 December 1925. p. 1. Retrieved July 12, 2017. Jesse W. Curtis takes the post vacated by Judge Waste, who becomes chief justice, with the resignation of Louis W. Myers.
  3. ^ "Judge Myers Has Support of Mayor". Los Angeles Herald (312). California Digital Newspaper Collection. 30 October 1920. p. B-15. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  4. ^ "Judge Lewis W. Myers to Succeed Judge Wilbur". Madera Tribune (59). California Digital Newspaper Collection. United Press Dispatch. 13 January 1923. p. 1. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  5. ^ Johnson, J. Edward (1966). History of Supreme Court, Vol 2, Justices, 1900-1950 (PDF). San Francisco, CA: Bancroft-Whitney Co. pp. 87–91. Archived from the original (PDF) on January 25, 2017. Retrieved September 14, 2017.
  6. ^ "Myers is Named New Chief Justice". Madera Mercury (17). California Digital Newspaper Collection. Associated Press. 9 April 1924. p. 1. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  7. ^ "Eight Judges Win Places". San Bernardino Sun (54 (180)). California Digital Newspaper Collection. 27 August 1924. p. 1. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  8. ^ "Curtis Takes New Office in the North Friday". San Bernardino Sun (57 (121)). California Digital Newspaper Collection. 30 December 1925. p. 9. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  9. ^ Transcription of bio Archived 2011-08-16 at the Wayback Machine from "Men of California" (1925).
  10. ^ "Firm History". O'Melveny & Myers. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  11. ^ a b O'Melveny, John. "In Memoriam: Louis W. Myers" (PDF). California Supreme Court, 55 Cal. Rpts. 2d 909. p. 912. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  12. ^ a b Transcription of bio from "American Blue Book California Lawyers."
  13. ^ Register - University of California, Volume 2. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. 1925. p. 81.
  14. ^ "Of Social Interest". Los Angeles Herald (58). California Digital Newspaper Collection. 28 November 1901. p. 6. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  15. ^ "Louis W. Myers II; Prominent Local Attorney". Los Angeles Times. April 24, 1993. Retrieved July 12, 2017.
  16. ^ "The Incompleat Angler". Abebooks.com. Retrieved July 12, 2017.

External links[edit]

See also[edit]

Legal offices
Preceded by
Curtis D. Wilbur
Chief Justice of California
Succeeded by
William H. Waste
Preceded by
Curtis D. Wilbur
Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court
Succeeded by
John W. Shenk