I love this! Josh Blackman and Yaakov Roth are putting together a book of photographs of places where great constitutional law cases arose. They write:
In keeping with the mission of the Harlan Institute, which seeks to utilize the power of Web 2.0 to make the Constitution more accessible, we are asking (blegging in the cyber lingo) bloggers across the Nation to help us out, and submit photographs. You will be credited in the ultimate production. If you live in any of these areas, we will find the exact location, and help you track it down.
They've got some great cases picked out that are in need of photographs. Of course they're looking for a Ten Commandments monument (Van Orden v. Perry, 545 U.S. 677 (2005)). Other cases to think about adding ... Fletcher v. Peck, Johnson v. McIntosh, and Worcester v. Georgia -- and The Antelope. There's a monument to the latter on Amelia Island, Florida, as I recall. How about Euclid v. Ambler Realty, too? And a school in Charlotte -- for Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenberg?
Over at Volokh, Ilya Somin's talking about this project.
Not to sound too "popular constitutional" about things -- but maybe they'd want to include photographs of places important in constitutional thought even though they're not immediately connected to a case -- like Charleston, SC, ground zero for the nullification controversy, or Fort Sumter for that matter. Or the Virginia state capitol, sight of debates over slavery in the 1830s and later the seat of the Confederate Congress. Or Gettysburg. Or maybe a bus in Montgomery, Alabama.
Now, this also makes me think .... what about great cases from the North Carolina Supreme Court? Like, hmm, University of North Carolina v. Foy. Sally Greene's already got State v. Mann fully covered.
Along the lines of "popular constitutionalism," the illustration is of a tree at the Brandywine Battlefield Park, which I took over winter break. The tree was there at the time of the battle and so was the house in the background, which is where LaFayette had his headquarters. I'll be talking soon some more about those heroes who barely staved off defeat of the revolutionary cause at Brandywine. On that day (September 11, 1777), to invoke a nineteenth-centuryism, "escape itself was almost victory" for us. John Marshall was there, as a young officer, and so were a bunch of other people who were almost captured.
Before we could proudly say of Franklin that he wrested lightning from the heavens and scepters from tyrannts, our cause had to actually wrest a scepter from a tyrannt. Brandywine was part of putting those revolutionary ideas into practice, though as things worked out, there wasn't a whole lot of wresting scepters on that day, or in the dark freezing and starving times that followed at Valley Forge.