Objective. We seek to explore the opinion assignments of Chief Justices fro
m 1888 to 1940 using three models: the organizational, institutional, and a
ttitudinal models. Methods. We empirically examine opinion assignments from
1888 to 1940 through a data set that the authors have collected. Results.
We find that earlier Chief Justices made assignments based on institutional
and organizational criteria rather than for ideological reasons. Conclusio
ns. We believe this difference is most likely related to contextual factors
that have changed for the modern Court.