United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama (in case citations, S.D. Ala.) is a federal court in the Eleventh Circuit (except for patent claims and claims against the U.S. government under the Tucker Act, which are appealed to the Federal Circuit).
The District was established on March 10, 1824, with the division of the state into a
Northern and Southern district. 
The United States Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Alabama represents the United States in civil and criminal litigation in the court. The current Acting United States Attorney is Steven E. Butler, since March 11, 2017.
Organization of the court [ edit ]
The United States District Court for the Southern District of Alabama is one of three federal judicial districts in Alabama.
Court for the District is held at  Mobile and Selma.
Division comprises the following counties: Mobile Baldwin, Choctaw, Clarke, Conecuh, Escambia, Mobile, Monroe, and Washington.
Division comprises the following counties: Selma Dallas, Hale, Marengo, Perry, and Wilcox.
Current judges [ edit ]
Vacancies and pending nominations [ edit ]
Former judges [ edit ]
Senior status Appointed by
Tait, Charles Charles Tait
–1826  —
Monroe, Monroe resignation
Crawford, William William Crawford
Adams, J.Q. J.Q. Adams death
Gayle, John John Gayle
Taylor, Taylor death
Jones, William Giles William Giles Jones
–1861  —
Buchanan, Buchanan resignation
Lane, George Washington George Washington Lane
Lincoln, Lincoln death
Busteed, Richard Richard Busteed
–1874  —
Lincoln, Lincoln resignation
Bruce, John John Bruce
Grant, Grant seat abolished
Toulmin, Harry Theophilus Harry Theophilus Toulmin
Cleveland, Cleveland death
Ervin, Robert Tait Robert Tait Ervin
Wilson, Wilson death
McDuffie, John John McDuffie
Roosevelt, F. F. Roosevelt death
Thomas, Daniel Holcombe Daniel Holcombe Thomas
Truman, Truman death
Pittman, Thomas Virgil Thomas Virgil Pittman
L. Johnson, L. Johnson death
Hand, William Brevard William Brevard Hand
Nixon, Nixon death
Cox, Emmett Ripley Emmett Ripley Cox
Reagan, Reagan appointment to 11th Cir.
Howard, Jr., Alex T. Alex T. Howard, Jr.
Reagan, Reagan death
Vollmer, Jr., Richard W. Richard W. Vollmer, Jr.
G.H.W.Bush, G.H.W.Bush death
Court Decisions [ edit ]
(1983) – Court affirmed that silent prayer was permissible in Wallace v. Jaffree Mobile County public schools. Decision was reversed by Eleventh Circuit and U.S. Supreme Court, both ruling that it violated the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment.
(1987) – Court rules that textbooks promoting Smith v. Board of School Commissioners of Mobile County secular humanism were unconstitutional, running contrary to the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment. Decision was reversed by Eleventh Circuit, which held that secular humanism was not a violation of the Establishment Clause.
(2015) – District Judge Callie V. S. "Ginny" Granade ruled that Alabama's ban on same-sex marriage is unconstitutional, violating the 14th Amendment's equal protection clause, on January 23. Days later, she issued an order clarifying her ruling, saying that all Alabama probate judges, who issue marriage licenses, must comply with the order. She stayed her order for two weeks to allow state defendants time to seek a stay from a higher court. On February 3, the Eleventh Circuit denied the stay, after denying a stay in a similar case out of Florida months before. On February 9, as the order was set to take effect, the U.S. Supreme Court also denied the stay. Searcy v. Strange
Succession of seats [ edit ]
Seat reassigned from the District of Alabama on March 10, 1824, by 4 Stat. 9 (concurrent with Northern District)
Seat made concurrent with Middle District on February 6, 1839, by 5 Stat. 315
Seat reassigned solely to Northern and Middle Districts on August 2, 1886, by 24 Stat. 213
Seat established on March 18, 1966, by 80 Stat. 75 (concurrent with Middle District)
Seat reassigned solely to the Southern District on June 2, 1970, by 84 Stat. 294
Butler, Jr. 1988–2005
Seat established on July 10, 1984, by 98 Stat. 333
Howard, Jr. 1986–1996
See also [ edit ]
^ http://www.fjc.gov/history/home.nsf/page/courts_district_al.html U.S. District Courts of Alabama, Legislative history, Federal Judicial Center
^ 28 U.S.C. § 81
^ Initially appointed to the District of Alabama in 1820 by James Monroe; reassigned to both the Northern District of Alabama and the Southern District of Alabama in 1824.
^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 23, 1860, confirmed by the United States Senate on January 30, 1860, and received commission on January 30, 1860.
^ Recess appointment; formally nominated on January 5, 1864, confirmed by the United States Senate on January 20, 1864, and received commission on January 20, 1864.
External links [ edit ]