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Meet Amazing Americans Leaders & Statesmen Thurgood Marshall
Thurgood Marshall in his Supreme Court robe
Thurgood Marshall in his Supreme Court robe

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A Career in Law

In 1965, Marshall got a request from another president. President Lyndon Johnson wanted him to become the solicitor general. The solicitor general is the lawyer who represents the United States government in all Supreme Court cases -- a very important job.

Marshall hoped the job might lead to an appointment to the Supreme Court. He was right. President Johnson appointed Marshall to the United States Supreme Court in 1967. He was the first African-American Supreme Court justice. President Johnson said it was "the right thing to do, the right time to do it, the right man and the right place." Although there was some dissent, the country had changed and Marshall was approved by the Senate. He served for 24 years.

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