Nebraska Case Converted to Mock Trial - Reenacted in Aurora

Nebraska Case Converted to Mock Trial - Reenacted in Aurora

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Ninth grade students at Aurora High School were studying “To Kill a Mockingbird” when their English teacher, Natalie Staroska, contacted the Hamilton County District Court for a potential mock trial demonstration. District Court Judge Rachel Daugherty received the inquiry and knew that the Aurora court had the Bill of Exceptions and the original court documents from a relevant case heard in the courthouse in 1920: State v. Robert Meyer.

The morning of February 23, 2018, Aurora ninth-graders re-enacted the original 1920 jury trial of State v. Robert Meyer using a modified mock trial script. 

For those who are unfamiliar, Mr. Meyer's conviction for teaching a foreign language (German) to young children in school was appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court.  The U.S. Supreme Court overturned the conviction in 1923 finding that the Nebraska statute that was used to guide the Meyer conviction was arbitrary and infringed on the liberty guaranteed under the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. 

More about Meyer v. Nebraska can be found in the Encyclopedia of the Great Plains:


Photo: Aurora Ninth-Graders Reenact Meyer v. Nebraska in the courtroom of Judge Rachel Daugherty.