Today’s American Minute

By Bill Federer

He had been chief justice of the Michigan Supreme Court, dean of the University of Michigan Law School and president of the American Bar Association. His name was Thomas Cooley, and he died this day, Sept. 12, 1898. His legal commentaries have had a major impact on law in America. In his “General Principles of Constitutional Law,” Thomas Cooley wrote: “It was never intended by the Constitution that the government should be prohibited from recognizing religion or that religious worship should never be provided for. … The Christian religion was always recognized in the administration of the common law of the land.”