Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

Fall 2009


Published in Great Plains Research 19.2 (Fall 2009): 252-52.


Copyright 2009 Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Used by permission.


The United States Supreme Court accepts for review less than two percent of the cases presented to it on appeal. For the vast majority of litigants in the federal court system, therefore, the circuit courts of appeal are truly the “court of last resort,” and throughout American history those courts have had the final say on a wide range of critical issues. Yet despite these truths, books about the Supreme Court arrive on the shelves almost daily, while treatments of the lower courts remain rare. Thus, Jeffrey Brandon Morris’s goal in Establishing Justice in Middle America is both admirable and ambitious—to provide a comprehensive narrative history of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.