Merrick Garland

Birth Name: Merrick Brian Garland

Place of Birth: Chicago, Illinois, U.S.

Date of Birth: November 13, 1952

Ethnicity: Ashkenazi Jewish

Merrick Garland is an American federal judge. He has served as Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, since February 12, 2013, and as a Judge on that Court, since March 20, 1997.

On March 16, 2016, he was nominated to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States by President Obama. The Senate did not consider the nomination, which expired on January 3, 2017.

Merrick is the son of Shirley (Horwitz) and Cyril Garland.

His parents were both Jewish (of Lithuanian Jewish, Polish Jewish, Belarusian Jewish, and Russian Jewish descent). Media statements that Merrick was “born to a Jewish mother and a Protestant father” are not correct.

Merrick is a second cousin of politician Terry Branstad, the Governor of Iowa. Merrick’s paternal grandfather, Max Hyman/Harry Garland, and Terry’s maternal grandfather, Louis Edward Garland, were siblings. They had both moved from Lithuania to Iowa.

Merrick’s paternal grandfather was Max Hyman/Harry Garland (the son of Nachman Garland and Rose Friedman). Max was born in Vaiguva, Lithuania.

Merrick’s paternal grandmother was named Rose B. Kaplan. Rose was born in Drohiczyn, Poland.

Merrick’s maternal grandfather was Abraham Meyer Horwitz (the son of Binyamin Horwitz and Rivkah Esther Sverdlov). Abraham was born in Vitebsk Oblast, Belarus. Binyamin was the son of Moishe Horwitz and Sterne Chaya. Rivkah was the daughter of Yehude Sverdlov.

Merrick’s maternal grandmother was Bessie Loretta Fish (the daughter of Berke Fish and Hodl). Bessie was born in Illinois, to parents from Russia. Berke was the son of Yeshiya Fish and Sarah. Hodl had roots in Riga, Latvia.

Sources: Genealogy of Merrick Garland –

Merrick’s father on the 1930 U.S. Census –

Obituary of Merrick’s father –

Death record of Merrick’s paternal grandfather, Max Harry Garland –

Merrick’s mother on the 1930 U.S. Census –

1 Response

  1. follers says:

    A deep shame on The New York Times, and all the other news sources that bizarrely stated that Garland’s father was Protestant.

    “An earlier version of this article misstated the religion of the father of Merrick B. Garland, President Obama’s Supreme Court nominee. He was Jewish, not Protestant.”

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