Photo of Elizabeth Dale

Elizabeth Dale

University of Florida Research Foundation Professor 2013 - 2015
Professor of Law and Professor of History (Joint Appointment with Department of History)



Mailing Address:
Box #117320 Gainesville, FL 32611


(352) 392-0271 ext 2265


Ph.D., University of Chicago J.D., Chicago-Kent College of Law (with honors) B.A., DePauw University

Teaching and Scholarship

Constitutional history, history of labor law and criminal law and practice, comparative constitutional history, public sector labor and employment law.

Professional Activities

  • University of Florida: Department of History Assistant Professor (2000), Associate Professor (2002). Joined College of Law as Adjunct Professor (2001), Affiliate Professor (2002). Center for Gender and Women’s Studies Affiliated Faculty (2001). Humanities Research Grant (2001). Member Faculty Senate (2002-05). Advisory Board, Journal of Law and Public Policy (2002); Editorial Board, Law and History Review (2001-05).
  • Clemson University: Assistant Professor Department of History (1995-2000)
  • Prior Legal Positions: Civil rights and employment discrimination attorney, Law Office of Kenneth N. Flaxman, Chicago, Ill. (1985-91); Member, Federal Trial Bar, Northern District of Illinois.

American Legal History (2 Credits) - LAW 6226

  • Historical introduction to the origins and development of American law, constitutional principles and legal institutions and their influence upon the distribution of social, economic and political power.

Current Books

  • "History of Criminal Justice in America, 1789-1939" (Cambridge, 2011)
  • “The Chicago Trunk Murder: Law and Justice at the Turn of the Century" (NIU Press, 2011)
  • "The Rule of Justice: The People of Chicago Versus Zephyr Davis", History of Criminal Law and Criminal Justice Series (Ohio State University Press, 2001)
  • "Debating and Creating Authority: The Failure of a Constitutional Ideal, Massachussetts Bay, 1629-1649", Justice and Power Series (Ashgate Publishing, Ltd (England), 2001)

Representative Law Reviews/Articles

  • "Popular Sovereignty: An Antebellum Case Study," in Constitutional Mythologies (A. Marciano, ed., Springer 2011).
  • Death or Transformation? Educational Autonomy in the Roberts Court in the 2006-2007 Supreme Court Review, guest editor Erwin Chermerinsky, 43 TULSA LAW REVIEW (Fall 2008)
  • People v. Coughlin and the Criminal Jury in Late Nineteenth-Century Chicago, 28 NORTHERN ILLINOIS UNIVERSITY LAW REVIEW (forthcoming, Summer 2008)
  • Employee Speech & Management Rights: A Counterintuitive Reading of Garcetti v. Ceballos, 29 BERKELEY JOURNAL OF EMPLOYMENT & LABOR LAW (forthcoming, June 2008)
  • It Makes Nothing Happen: Reasons for Studying the History of Law, 3 JOURNAL OF LAW, CULTURE, AND HUMANITIES (forthcoming, 2008)
  • Criminal Justice in the United States, 1780-1920: A Government of Laws or Men? CAMBRIDGE HISTORY OF LAW IN AMERICA, volume 2: 133 (Christopher Tomlins and Michael Grossberg, eds.) (2008)
  • Getting Away with Murder, 111 AMERICAN HISTORICAL REVIEW 95 (2006)
  • A Government of Men, Not Laws: Criminal Law in America, 1790-1920. Forthcoming, Cambridge History of American Law, Christopher Tomlins and Michael Grossman, editors.
  • A Different Sort of Justice: The Informal Courts of Public Opinion in Antebellum South Carolina. 54 South Carolina Law Review 627 (2003).
  • Not Simply Black and White: Jury Power and Law in Late Nineteenth-Century Chicago. 25 Social Science History 7 (Spring 2001)
  • The People versus Zephyr Davis: Law and Popular Justice in late Nineteenth-Century Chicago. 17 Law and History Review 27 (January 1999)