Marbury v. Madison
1803 First time the court declared something "unconstitutional," helped define checks and balances.
McCulloch v. Maryland
1819 Gave Congress implied powers for implementing the Constitution, in order to create a functional national government.
Plessy v Ferguson
1896 Said states can segregate based on race, under the doctrine of "separate but equal".
Korematsu v. United States
1944 Said the exclusion order leading to Japanese American Internment was constitutional.
Brown v. Board of Education
1954 Declared separate public schools for black and white students unconstitutional. Overturned the Plessy v. Ferguson decision of 1896 which allowed state-sponsored segregation.
Roe v. Wade
1973 Gave women the right to have an abortion.
Miranda v. Arizona
1966 Defendants must be read their rights before being questioned by police.
Gideon v. Wainwright
1963 Courts are required to provide counsel (a lawyer) to defendants who are unable to afford one.