Who Was the First Chief Justice of the Supreme Court?


Quick Answer

John Jay was the first Chief Justice of the United States. He was appointed to the position in 1789 after turning down an offer to become George Washington's Secretary of State.

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Full Answer

Jay was born in 1745 into an affluent New York family. In addition to being one of the nation's Founding Fathers, he also held the position of Second Governor of New York and was one of the signers of the Treaty of Paris.

The most famous case over which Jay presided was 1793's Chisholm vs. Georgia, a case that paved the way for judicial review. The ratification of the 11th Amendment to the Constitution overturned that decision.

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