Memory Hold The Door
J. Robert Martin Jr.
Born in Greenville, South Carolina, he was the son of J. Robert Martin and Lyda Rankin Martin. In December 1929, he married Lydia Prichard. He graduated from Washington and Lee University with an LL.B. degree in 1931. He was admitted to the South Carolina Bar and entered the practice of law with his father in 1931.
Judge Martin served in the House of Representatives from 1943-1944. In 1944, he was elected as a State trial judge of the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit of South Carolina and served in this capacity until 1961. He was appointed by President John F. Kennedy to the Federal Bench in 1961 and served as United States District Judge for the Eastern and Western Districts of South Carolina from 1961-1965; and as Chief District Judge of the consolidated U.S. District Court of South Carolina from 1965-1979, at which time he assumed Senior Judge status.
Judge Martin presided over the major desegregation cases in the State during the 1960's and over the reapportionment cases of the House and Senate in the early 1970's.
He was a member of the American, South Carolina and Greenville County Bar Associations.
Judge Martin was considered one of the most able judges ever to preside, serving the state for four decades; a pioneer of innovative judical administration; a loyal, distinguished and dedicated public servant; a model to be emulated by all trial judges.