List of United States Supreme Court Justices by time in office

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A total of 113 Justices have served on the Supreme Court of the United States, the highest judicial body in the United States. Justices have life tenure, and so they serve until they die in office, resign or retire, or are impeached and removed from office (which has never happened; the one impeached Justice was acquitted). Among the current members of the Court, Associate Justice Anthony Kennedy is the longest-serving justice, with a tenure of 11,021 days (30 years, 63 days) as of April 22, 2018. For the 104 non-incumbent justices, the mean length of service was 6,112 days (16.7 years) with a standard deviation of 3,620 days (9.9 years). The median length of service was 5,740 days (15.7 years). Their period of service ranges from William O. Douglas's 13,358 days (36 years, 209 days) on the Court to the 163-day tenure of Thomas Johnson.

The table below ranks all United States Supreme Court Justices by time in office. The basis of the ranking is the difference between dates; if counted by number of calendar days all the figures would be one greater, with the exception of Charles Evans Hughes and John Rutledge, who would receive two days each.

The length of incumbency for the five individuals confirmed for associate justice, and later confirmed for chief justice separately—Charles Evans Hughes, William Rehnquist, John Rutledge, Harlan F. Stone, and Edward Douglass White—measures their cumulative length of service on the Court. A nominee who was confirmed by the United States Senate but declined to serve, such as Robert H. Harrison, or who died before taking his seat, such as Edwin M. Stanton, is not considered to have served as a Justice.[1][2] Such individuals are not included. The start date given for each justice is the day he or she took the oath of office,[1] with the end date being the date of the justice's death, resignation, or retirement.[1] A highlighted row indicates justice currently serving on the Court.[3]

Justices by time in office

Longest Supreme Court tenure
Williamodouglas.jpg
13,358 days
(1939–1975)
Stephen Johnson Field, photo half length seated, 1875.jpg
12,614 days
(1863–1897)
Shortest Supreme Court tenure[a]
JamesFByrnesSoS.jpg
452 days
(1941–1942)
Thomas Johnson (governor).jpeg
163 days
(1792–1793)
Rank Justice Length
in days
Start date[1] End date[1]
1 Douglas, William O.William O. Douglas 13,358 April 17, 1939 November 12, 1975
2 Field, Stephen JohnsonStephen Johnson Field 12,614 May 20, 1863 December 1, 1897
3 Stevens, John PaulJohn Paul Stevens 12,611 December 19, 1975 June 29, 2010
4 Marshall, JohnJohn Marshall[b] 12,570 February 4, 1801 July 6, 1835
5 Black, HugoHugo Black 12,447 August 19, 1937 September 17, 1971
6 Harlan, John MarshallJohn Marshall Harlan 12,360 December 10, 1877 October 14, 1911
7 Brennan Jr., William J.William J. Brennan Jr. 12,330 October 16, 1956 July 20, 1990
8 Rehnquist, WilliamWilliam Rehnquist[b] 12,293[c] January 7, 1972
September 26, 1986
September 26, 1986
September 3, 2005
9 Story, JosephJoseph Story 12,273 February 3, 1812 September 10, 1845
10 Wayne, James MooreJames Moore Wayne 11,860 January 14, 1835 July 5, 1867
11 McLean, JohnJohn McLean 11,406 January 11, 1830 April 4, 1861
12 White, ByronByron White 11,396 April 16, 1962 June 28, 1993
13 Washington, BushrodBushrod Washington 11,252 February 4, 1799 November 26, 1829
14 Johnson, WilliamWilliam Johnson 11,046 May 7, 1804 August 4, 1834
15 Kennedy, AnthonyAnthony Kennedy 11,021[d] February 18, 1988 Incumbent
16 Scalia, AntoninAntonin Scalia 10,732 September 26, 1986 February 13, 2016
17 Holmes, Oliver WendellOliver Wendell Holmes 10,627 December 8, 1902 January 12, 1932
18 Taney, Roger B.Roger B. Taney[b] 10,425 March 28, 1836 October 12, 1864
19 Miller, Samuel FreemanSamuel Freeman Miller 10,311 July 21, 1862 October 13, 1890
20 Catron, JohnJohn Catron 10,256 May 1, 1837 May 30, 1865
21 Nelson, SamuelSamuel Nelson 10,136 February 27, 1845 November 28, 1872
22 White, Edward DouglassEdward Douglass White[b] 9,929[c] March 12, 1894
December 19, 1910
December 19, 1910
May 19, 1921
23 McKenna, JosephJoseph McKenna 9,840 January 26, 1898 January 5, 1925
24 Thomas, ClarenceClarence Thomas 9,678[d] October 23, 1991 Incumbent
25 Van Devanter, WillisWillis Van Devanter 9,647 January 3, 1911 June 2, 1937
26 McReynolds, James ClarkJames Clark McReynolds 9,608 October 12, 1914 January 31, 1941
27 Ginsburg, Ruth BaderRuth Bader Ginsburg 9,021[d] August 10, 1993 Incumbent
28 O'Connor, Sandra DaySandra Day O'Connor 8,894 September 25, 1981 January 31, 2006
29 Blackmun, HarryHarry Blackmun 8,821 June 9, 1970 August 3, 1994
30 Marshall, ThurgoodThurgood Marshall 8,765 October 2, 1967 October 1, 1991
31 Breyer, StephenStephen Breyer 8,663[d] August 3, 1994 Incumbent
32 Frankfurter, FelixFelix Frankfurter 8,611 January 30, 1939 August 28, 1962
33 Clifford, NathanNathan Clifford 8,586 January 21, 1858 July 25, 1881
34 Grier, Robert CooperRobert Cooper Grier 8,575 August 10, 1846 January 31, 1870
35 Duvall, GabrielGabriel Duvall 8,453 November 23, 1811 January 14, 1835
36 Stewart, PotterPotter Stewart 8,298 October 14, 1958 July 3, 1981
37 Brandeis, LouisLouis Brandeis 8,288 June 5, 1916 February 13, 1939
38 Bradley, Joseph P.Joseph P. Bradley 7,975 March 23, 1870 January 22, 1892
39 Fuller, MelvilleMelville Fuller[b] 7,938 October 8, 1888 July 4, 1910
40 Stone, Harlan F.Harlan F. Stone[b] 7,721[c] March 2, 1925
July 3, 1941
July 2, 1941
April 22, 1946
41 Gray, HoraceHorace Gray 7,553 January 9, 1882 September 15, 1902
42 Cushing, WilliamWilliam Cushing 7,527 February 2, 1790 September 13, 1810
43 Thompson, SmithSmith Thompson 7,413 September 1, 1823 December 18, 1843
44 Brewer, David JosiahDavid Josiah Brewer 7,385 January 6, 1890 March 28, 1910
45 Day, William R.William R. Day 7,196 March 2, 1903 November 13, 1922
46 Reed, Stanley FormanStanley Forman Reed 6,965 January 31, 1938 February 25, 1957
47 Swayne, Noah HaynesNoah Haynes Swayne 6,937 January 27, 1862 January 24, 1881
48 Todd, ThomasThomas Todd 6,854 May 4, 1807 February 7, 1826
49 Souter, DavidDavid Souter 6,838 October 9, 1990 June 29, 2009
50 Daniel, Peter VivianPeter Vivian Daniel 6,716 January 10, 1842 May 31, 1860
51 Clark, Tom C.Tom C. Clark 6,501 August 24, 1949 June 12, 1967
52 Burger, Warren E.Warren E. Burger[b] 6,304 June 23, 1969 September 26, 1986
53 Hughes, Charles EvansCharles Evans Hughes[b] 6,214[c] October 10, 1910
February 24, 1930
June 10, 1916
June 30, 1941
54 Butler, PiercePierce Butler 6,162 January 2, 1923 November 16, 1939
55 Harlan II, John MarshallJohn Marshall Harlan II 6,023 March 28, 1955 September 23, 1971
56 Livingston, Henry BrockholstHenry Brockholst Livingston 5,901 January 20, 1807 March 18, 1823
57 Warren, EarlEarl Warren[b] 5,740 October 5, 1953 June 23, 1969
58 Powell, Lewis FranklinLewis Franklin Powell 5,649 January 7, 1972 June 26, 1987
59 Brown, Henry BillingsHenry Billings Brown 5,621 January 5, 1891 May 28, 1906
60 Chase, SamuelSamuel Chase 5,613 February 4, 1796 June 19, 1811
61 Sutherland, GeorgeGeorge Sutherland 5,586 October 2, 1922 January 17, 1938
62 Roberts, OwenOwen Roberts 5,538 June 2, 1930 July 31, 1945
63 McKinley, JohnJohn McKinley 5,305 January 9, 1838 July 19, 1852
64 Baldwin, HenryHenry Baldwin 5,207 January 18, 1830 April 21, 1844
65 Davis, DavidDavid Davis 5,198 December 10, 1862 March 4, 1877
66 Waite, MorrisonMorrison Waite[b] 5,133 March 4, 1874 March 23, 1888
67 Peckham, Rufus WheelerRufus Wheeler Peckham 5,039 January 6, 1896 October 24, 1909
68 Paterson, WilliamWilliam Paterson 4,929 March 11, 1793 September 9, 1806
69 Jackson, Robert H.Robert H. Jackson 4,838 July 11, 1941 October 9, 1954
70 Burton, Harold HitzHarold Hitz Burton 4,760 October 1, 1945 October 13, 1958
71 Roberts, JohnJohn Roberts[b] 4,588[d] September 29, 2005 Incumbent
72 Alito, SamuelSamuel Alito 4,464[d] January 31, 2006 Incumbent
73 Blatchford, SamuelSamuel Blatchford 4,113 April 3, 1882 July 7, 1893
74 Pitney, MahlonMahlon Pitney 3,940 March 18, 1912 December 31, 1922
75 Strong, WilliamWilliam Strong 3,928 March 14, 1870 December 14, 1880
76 Shiras Jr., GeorgeGeorge Shiras Jr. 3,787 October 10, 1892 February 23, 1903
77 Murphy, FrankFrank Murphy 3,452 February 5, 1940 July 19, 1949
78 Iredell, JamesJames Iredell 3,448 May 12, 1790 October 20, 1799
79 Hunt, WardWard Hunt 3,305 January 9, 1873 January 27, 1882
80 Wilson, JamesJames Wilson 3,242 October 5, 1789 August 21, 1798
81 Sotomayor, SoniaSonia Sotomayor 3,179[d] August 8, 2009 Incumbent
82 Taft, William HowardWilliam Howard Taft[b] 3,129 July 11, 1921 February 3, 1930
83 Chase, Salmon P.Salmon P. Chase[b] 3,065 December 15, 1864 May 7, 1873
84 Campbell, John ArchibaldJohn Archibald Campbell 2,941 April 11, 1853 April 30, 1861
85 Matthews, StanleyStanley Matthews 2,866 May 17, 1881 March 22, 1889
86 Kagan, ElenaElena Kagan 2,815[d] August 7, 2010 Incumbent
87 Vinson, Fred M.Fred M. Vinson[b] 2,633 June 24, 1946 September 8, 1953
88 Sanford, Edward TerryEdward Terry Sanford 2,574 February 19, 1923 March 8, 1930
89 Minton, ShermanSherman Minton 2,560 October 12, 1949 October 15, 1956
90 Rutledge, Wiley BlountWiley Blount Rutledge 2,399 February 15, 1943 September 10, 1949
91 Woods, William BurnhamWilliam Burnham Woods 2,320 January 5, 1881 May 14, 1887
92 Cardozo, Benjamin N.Benjamin N. Cardozo 2,308 March 14, 1932 July 9, 1938
93 Curtis, Benjamin RobbinsBenjamin Robbins Curtis 2,182 October 10, 1851 September 30, 1857
94 Woodbury, LeviLevi Woodbury 2,172 September 23, 1845 September 4, 1851
95 Clarke, John HessinJohn Hessin Clarke 2,170 October 9, 1916 September 18, 1922
96 Blair, JohnJohn Blair 2,091 February 2, 1790 October 25, 1795
97 Jay, JohnJohn Jay[b] 2,079 October 19, 1789 June 29, 1795
98 (tie) Lamar, Lucius Quintus CincinnatusLucius Quintus Cincinnatus Lamar 1,832 January 18, 1888 January 23, 1893
Whittaker, Charles EvansCharles Evans Whittaker 1,832 March 25, 1957 March 31, 1962
100 Lamar, Joseph RuckerJoseph Rucker Lamar 1,825 January 3, 1911 January 2, 1916
101 Barbour, Philip PendletonPhilip Pendleton Barbour 1,750 May 12, 1836 February 25, 1841
102 Ellsworth, OliverOliver Ellsworth[b] 1,742 March 8, 1796 December 15, 1800
103 Lurton, Horace HarmonHorace Harmon Lurton 1,651 January 3, 1910 July 12, 1914
104 Moody, William HenryWilliam Henry Moody 1,434 December 17, 1906 November 20, 1910
105 Moore, AlfredAlfred Moore 1,375 April 21, 1800 January 26, 1804
106 Fortas, AbeAbe Fortas 1,318 October 4, 1965 May 14, 1969
107 Goldberg, ArthurArthur Goldberg 1,028 October 1, 1962 July 25, 1965
108 Jackson, Howell EdmundsHowell Edmunds Jackson 887 March 4, 1893 August 8, 1895
109 Trimble, RobertRobert Trimble 801 June 16, 1826 August 25, 1828
110 Rutledge, JohnJohn Rutledge[b] 563[c] February 15, 1790
July 1, 1795
March 5, 1791
December 28, 1795
111 Byrnes, James F.James F. Byrnes 452 July 8, 1941 October 3, 1942
112 Gorsuch, NeilNeil Gorsuch 377[d] April 10, 2017 Incumbent
113 Johnson, ThomasThomas Johnson 163 August 6, 1792 January 16, 1793

Notes

  1. ^ Excluding Neil Gorsuch, the junior-most incumbent justice, who joined the Supreme Court in April 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Served as chief justice
  3. ^ a b c d e Tenure as associate justice and chief justice combined
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i As of April 22, 2018

See also

References

  1. ^ a b c d e "Members of the Supreme Court from the Supreme Court of the United States". Official website of the Supreme Court of the United States. Retrieved September 19, 2009. 
  2. ^ Stanton took the oath of office on his deathbed, but according to the Supreme Court Historical Society, he never took "the necessary steps toward becoming a Member of the Court."
  3. ^ "Judges of the United States Courts". Official website of the Federal Judicial Center. Archived from the original on September 29, 2007. Retrieved December 27, 2007. 
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