How to Get Law Practice

Lewis E. Stanton
1907 The Yale law journal  
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more » ... out Early Journal Content at http://about.jstor.org/participate--jstor/individuals/early-journal--content. JSTOR is a digital library of academic journals, books, and primary source objects. JSTOR helps people discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content through a powerful research and teaching platform, and preserves this content for future generations. JSTOR is part of ITHAKA, a not--for--profit organization that also includes Ithaka S+R and Portico. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org. HOW TO GET LAW PRACTICE HOW TO GET LAW PRACTICE. First, get the best education. To educate is not to cram memory with facts, but to draw out powers of mind. No amount of information picked up in an office, compares with systematic training in a modern law school. One great American lawyer fitted himself for legal study by reading Shakespeare, the Bible and Bunyan's "Pilgrim's Progress." Young men who were denied collegiate or even academic discipline have made their way into law by simple mastery of the English tongue. Again one ought to study law for love of it, or not at all. If he has no love for it he does well to leave it. A friend applied to me for advice as to how to enter the legal profession. I suggested to him not to go into it but to follow up electricity in which he was employed. To my surprise he answered: "I know there is more money for me in electrical science, but I do not like it and do like the law." The Connecticut rules require that an applicant for examination must satisfy the committee that "before beginning the study of the law, he graduated from a college, high school or preparatory school whose standing shall be approved by the committee, or was admitted to some college or law school, the requirements for the admission to which shall be approved by the committee, or passed an examination upon his literary qualifications before theip." If one would learn how to get law practice, let him conform fully to this wise rule. Many have asked me how to get into an office, and start in practice. Some years ago it was said that "the way to resume specie payments is to resume" and I add that the way to start in law practice is to start. Take an office, put out a shingle and go ahead. If clients do not come, study law'and watch practice in the courts. The late William Hungerford of Hartford, a wonderful example of success in legal work once gave hints to me. In his quaint way he said: "I do not quite see why anybody wishes to be a lawyer, but if you really do, I advise you to hire the best office in the city, to buy all the law books you can pay for, and then buy all law books you can get trusted for." The Yankee shrewdness in that advice needs no comment. Yet how many disregard it, and we see them in small and dingy offices with few authorities, not even the rules of court at hand, and with no opinions of their own in which they have confi-
doi:10.2307/785198 fatcat:vbovkt5acza2tneab4lj275num