Bible Project

“American Judicial Alliance’s presentation should be required for all Supreme Court nominees and sitting Federal Judges.”
— Congressman Ted Poe

American Judicial Alliance Dedicates Unique Signatory Bibles to Courts Across the Nation

Judges Receiving Harlan Bibles in North Louisiana

In 1906, Justice John Marshall Harlan, I (1833-1911) gave his own Bible to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS).  It has become known as the “Harlan Bible” and is maintained by the Court’s Curator.  Since its presentation, the Harlan Bible’s flyleaf pages have been signed by every justice in succession shortly after taking the oath of office.

Justice David Souter said that signing the Harlan Bible “was the most humbling thing that I have ever done in my entire life.”  Justice Samuel Alito also wrote what a “thrilling and awe-inspiring moment” it was when he signed his name alongside “all the Justices for the past 100 years.”  Justice Sonia Sotomayor said “taking the oath with my hand on Justice Harlan’s bible” was among the “most symbolically meaningful” activities of her investiture.

American Judicial Alliance replicates this tradition. We plan to dedicate a Bible to every court in America.  You can help us. Donate now!

Why Does the Bible Dedication Bear the Date May 1st?

Since 1958, May 1st has been “Law Day” – a special day of celebration by Americans to appreciate our liberties and reaffirm our loyalty to the United States.  By statute (36 U.S.C. 113) it is set aside to cultivate respect for law.

Missouri Court of Appeals Judges with Retired Judge Darrell White (center)


Why This Particular Version of the Bible? The “Harlan Bible” is an Oxford Sunday School Teachers Edition King James Version Bible that is no longer published.  Believing there is merit in fidelity to Harlan’s example, Retired Judges of America has undertaken a review of Bibles published today.  The Bible chosen for use is the Thompson Chain Reference Study Bible.  This Bible, characterized as a “doctrinally objective” edition, has sold approximately four million copies since its introduction in 1908.  Moreover, the Thompson Bible contains far more blank flyleaf pages for judicial signing than any other edition reviewed.

Please contact us so that we can arrange for a Harlan Bible to reside in your court.