mock court

Court of Historical Review

The Court of Historical Review (sometimes called the Court of Historical Review and Appeal) is a mock court in San Francisco, California. It has been convened on irregular intervals over several decades in order to decide questions of historical curiosity. The court's judgment is purely symbolic and has no legal or academic authority. The court has been presided over by a number of actual or retired judges, including U.S. District Court Judge Daniel Hanlon and San Francisco Municipal Court Judge George T. Choppelas.

Though it is a mock court, a number of notable attorneys and civic figures have argued cases and appeared as "witnesses", sometimes in character as historical figures. The court's proceedings are described as colorful and are reported widely.


The most widely noted case before the Court of Historical Review was in 1983, when it determined that the fortune cookie was invented in San Francisco, not Los Angeles. Participants in the case "wore yellow makeup and Celestial costumes and spoke in pidgin English as they presented the oral history underlying each side’s case" .

Other verdicts of the court include:


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