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Harry Blackmun was the 98th U.S. Supreme Court justice, known for his landmark ruling in Roe v. Wade.
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Over the years, Blackmun became an increasingly liberal force on the court, advocating for affirmative action, the poor, and immigrants' rights. A few months before his retirement, he opposed the use of the death penalty. Blackmun was noted to be a highly intelligent, modest judge who was fit, had a knack for humor, and sometimes displayed emotion and cultural interests in his writings.
Blackmun retired at the age of 85 in 1994. He died on March 4, 1999, at 90 years old,
after complications from hip surgery. He had donated his papers to the Library of Congress in 1997, and they were made available to the public in 2004.
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The Supreme Court has presided over landmark cases that have changed the history of the United States. At times, the judges themselves have been the history makers, as in the case of Thurgood Marshall, the first African-American Justice; Sandra Day O’Connor, the first woman to serve on the Supreme Court; and Sonia Sotomayor, the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice. Here’s a look at the famous judges who have served on the United States' highest court.
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