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ABILA History

The International Code Committee of the United States, which existed from 1873-1882, complemented the work of the International Law Association during the ILA’s early years.

The American Branch of the International Law Association was formally established in January 1922, on the initiative of several distinguished U.S. lawyers who had attended the 30th ILA conference in The Hague in 1921. Hollis Bailey of Boston was the American Branch’s first President, Arthur Kuhn of New York the first Secretary, and U.S. Supreme Court Justice (and former U.S. President) William Howard Taft the first Honorary President.

In its early years, the American Branch emphasized codification, particularly of private international law subjects, and the critical importance of U.S. lawyers who worked on international law having contact and engaging in studies with international lawyers abroad. The American Branch still pursues these important goals. The work of the Branch has expanded to include its own major international law conferences (International Law Weekend and regional International Law Weekends) and a wide range of Branch committee projects and other programs concerning both private and public international law.

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