David Hoffman and the Science of Jurisprudence

David HoffmanThe works of David Hoffman, founder of the Law Institute at the University of Maryland, have long played an influential role in the development of American legal education and thought. Several law review articles have looked at specific aspects of his career, but little effort has been made to develop a complete picture of David Hoffman's life. This may stem, in part, from the fact that Hoffman, unlike many of his contemporaries, kept no journal or letter books (or if he did, they are lost to us now). The goal of this resource is to use original documents, secondary resources and biographical material to provide a closer examination of David Hoffman's life and his science of jurisprudence.

Table of Contents


David Hoffman Time Line

Biographical Sketch from the Dictionary of American Biography

Cordell's Official History of the University Of Maryland

Publications by David Hoffman in the Thurgood Marshall Law Library


Memorial and Argument in the Case of the Ship Blaireau, 1828

Maryland Court of Appeals Case, 1830

James Sheppard vs. Lemuel Taylor, 1830

A Letter to Justice Joseph Story, 1832

A Course of Legal Study, 1836

Anthony Grumbler on Life in America, 1837

A Letter to the Trustees, 1839

Political Career, 1843

A Petition to Congress, 1845

Emigration to the United States, 1849

Chronicles of the Wandering Jew, 1853

Hoffman's Lasting Influence


Legislation Authorizing a Lottery for the Law Institute, 1813

A Course of Legal Study, 1817

United States v. Hare, 1818

The Lecture of 1823

An Address to Students of Law, 1824

Chace against Vasquez, 1826

This site was researched and developed in 2005 and 2006 by Bill Sleeman, Assistant Director for Technical Services.

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