Your Ticket to Bar Admission

About the Author

Chief Judge James McSherry

Chief Judge James McSherry

Former Chief Judge, Court of Appeals of Maryland

IN RE MADDOX

Issue: Are females within the class of persons eligible for admission to the Bar of Maryland?

Holding: No.

Area of Concern: The Court believed that the Maryland General Assembly only authorized the admission of males to the practice of law at the time of its opinion.  Unwilling to take "no" for an answer, Etta H. Maddox took her case to the Maryland legislature, lobbying successfully for legislation that would permit women to become Maryland lawyers.  After passing the bar examination, this applicant was sworn in as Maryland's first female attorney on September 11, 1902.

Citation: 93 Md. 727, 50 A. 487 (1901)