Texas Tech University

William R. Casto

Paul Whitfield Horn Distinguished Professor, 1983

Email: william.casto@ttu.edu

Phone: (806) 834-8072

Admitted to practice in Tennessee.

Professor Casto received his law degree from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville and a Doctor of the Science of Law degree from Columbia University. He joined the Texas Tech faculty in 1983 after practicing law for a number of years. He has written a number of well received books and articles on international tort law and on the federal courts. The United States Supreme Court has frequently cited or relied upon his published scholarship. He is a member of the American Law Institute and holds a Paul Whitfield Horn Distinguished Professorship, which is the highest honor that Texas Tech may bestow on a faculty member. He is currently writing a book on the process of providing legal advice in government.

He has written three well-received books: The Supreme Court in the Early Republic, Oliver Ellsworth and the Creation of the Federal Republic, and Foreign Affairs and theConstitution in the Age of Fighting Sail. Professor Casto has written articles on judicial review, foreign policy, and the relationship between religion and public life in the Founding Era.

Photo Description


  • B.A., University of Tennessee at Knoxville, 1970
  • J.D., University of Tennessee at Knoxville, 1973
  • J.S.D., Columbia University, 1983


  • Federal Courts
  • Contracts
  • Business Entities

Selected Publications

Foreign Affairs and the Constitution in the Age of Fighting Sail. ( University of South Carolina Press, 2006).

Oliver Ellsworth and the Creation of the Federal Republic. (Second Circuit Committee on History and Commemorative Events, 1997).

The Supreme Court in the Early Republic: the Chief Justiceships of John Jay and Oliver Ellsworth. (University of South Carolina Press, 1995).

There Were Great Men Before Agamemnon. 62 Vanderbilt L. Rev. 371 (2009)

“Dear Sister Antillico… ”: The Story of Kirksey v. Kirksey, 94 Georgetown L. J. 321 (2006).

The New Federal Common Law of Tort Remedies for Violations of International Law, 37 Rutgers L. J. 635 (2006).

"We are armed for the defense of the rights of man:" The French Resolution Comes to America, 61 Am. Neptune 263 (2001).

Additional Light on the Origins of Federal Admiralty Jurisdiction, 31 J. Mar. L. & Com. 143 (2000).

Oliver Ellsworth's Calvinism: a Biographical Essay on Religion and Political Psychology in the Early Republic, 36 J. Church & St. 507 (1994).

The Origins of Federal Admiralty Jurisdiction in an Age of Privateers, Smugglers, and Pirates, 37 Am. J. Legal Hist. 117 (1993)

Full Bibliography