WITHOUT FEAR OR FAVOR by Walker Lewis. 556 pages. Houghton Mifflin. $7.50.
When the old man finally died at the age of 87, President Lincoln dutifully came calling at his modest home on Indiana Avenue for a final look at his gaunt face before the coffin was closed. But for all the solemn condolences, there was no real sorrow in official Washington when Chief Justice Roger
Brooke Taney died on Oct. 12, 1864. At best, there was a widespread sense of relief; at worst, an unconcealed jubilation.
For the old Chief Justice was an uncompromising constitutionalist, a stout defender of the citizen's civil rights...