Alabama State Bar
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Charles Morgan, Jr. (1930 - 2009)
Charles Morgan, Jr. was born on March 11, 1930 in Cincinnati, Ohio, but he grew up in Birmingham and loved Alabama. He received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Alabama.

Chuck was the principal attorney in numerous civil rights and civil liberties cases. Among these cases is Reynolds v. Sims (1964), the reapportionment case which established the requirement of one man, one vote representation in both houses of a state legislature; White v. Crook (1966), which resulted in the racial integration of juries in Alabama and which declared that the exclusion of women from juries in Alabama was unconstitutional thus becoming the first application of the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment to women’s rights; and Whitus v. Georgia (1967), where racially discriminatory juries selected from racially segregated tax digests were declared unconstitutional and which resulted in the setting aside of 5 Georgia death penalty convictions.

But his singular moment of courage took place on the Monday following the Sunday bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church in 1963 in Birmingham. On that day at Birmingham’s Young Men’s Business Club, Morgan asked the central question of who was responsible for the bombing. His answer was we all are due to the racism of the city. Because of his outspokenness, Chuck could not sustain his law practice and he and his family left Birmingham in 1964. He opened the ACLU’s Southern Regional Office in Atlanta and later became Director of its Washington, D.C. office.

Chuck Morgan remained a member of the Alabama State Bar throughout his professional life. He wrote two books about his life: A Time to Speak about his pre-1963 experiences, and One Man, One Voice, a memoir concerning the 1960’s and 1970’s. As one of the nomination letters stated: “He believed strongly that the practice of law was a profession and not a business, and he embodied its highest ideals”. Morgan died in Destin, Florida on January 8, 2009. Throughout his career he continued to fight for equal rights and justice for all.

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