The Margaret Sanger Papers


Roe, Gilbert Ernstein (1865-1929)

Lawyer and author. Married Gwyneth King (1899), three children. Associate of Robert LaFollette's Wisconsin law firm, from 1890-99, quickly became legal and political advisor for Senator La Follette, argued particularly for Progressive reforms such as direct primaries and regulations on railroad and insurance industries. Moved to New York in 1899, started law firm with William McCoombs, worked to extend Progressive reforms to New York State. Legal work specialized in defense of opponents of World War I, and for those prosecuted as spies. Successfully defended Robert La Follette in the 1918 attempt to expel him from the Senate for seditious activities, influential in repeal of the Lusk Laws and defended five Socialist New York Assemblymen who were expelled from the Assembly for views on war. Roe also defended William Sanger at his trial for distributing Family Limitation in 1915. Wrote two books critical of the judiciary, Select Opinions of Luther Dixon and Edmund Ryan (1907) and Our Judicial Oligarchy (1912)
References: Dictionary of American Biography.