Douglas Blount Maggs

Professor of Law, 1930-1962

Douglas B. Maggs was one of the group of faculty that Dean Justin Miller brought with him from the University of Southern California in 1930.  The others included John S. Bradway, William R. Roalfe, and Gordon E. Dean.  Maggs primarily taught torts and constitutional law but was also involved in the current decisions class that Dean Miller started in 1931.  Maggs is remembered for his great attention to detail and intolerance for lazy students.  It was noted in the 1952 Prolocutor that “His classes [are] often exciting when a student comes unprepared.”

Maggs completed his A.B. and J.D. degrees at the University of California in 1922 and 1924.  After earning an S.J.D. from Harvard in 1926 he began teaching at the University of California.  Maggs was hired by the University of Southern California in 1927.  He served as a Special Assistant to the Attorney General of the U.S. from 1938-1939 and as the Chief of the Wage-Hour Unit in the Department of Justice in 1939.  During World War II he held positions with the Board of Economic Warfare, the Office for Emergency Management, and the Department of Labor.  He was a visiting professor at several universities over his career including Kyoto and Doshisha Universities in Japan during 1958 as well as Director of the Kyoto Center for American Studies the same year.  He died in 1962.  In 1997 he was honored with an endowed professorship named after him.  The chair was first conferred on Walter E. Dellinger III.


Duke University, School of Law, Bulletin of Duke University School of Law [serial]

Robert F. Durden, The Rebuilding of Duke University's School of Law, 1925-1947 (Part I)[], vol. LXVI, no. 3, July 1989 North Carolina History Review 321

Robert F. Durden, The Rebuilding of Duke University's School of Law, 1925-1947 (Part II)[], vol. LXVI, no. 4, October 1989 North Carolina History Review 443

Robert F. Durden, The Launching of Duke University, 1924-1949 (1993)

The Faculty, 1952 Prolocutor 5

Courses Taught


Constitutional Law


Current Decisions

Seminar in Public Law – Regulation of Business and Business Practices

Constitutional Law I

Constitutional Law II

Seminar in Trade Regulation

Administrative Law

Constitutional Law and Federal Courts Seminar

Civil Procedure II

Constitutional Law and Federal Courts

Torts and Introduction to Procedure

Civil Liberties and Civil Rights Seminar