WASHINGTON -- The bier first used for the state funeral of the president who freed the slaves, Abraham Lincoln, will be put back into ceremonial use today for the great-grandson of a slave, Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.
The black-draped "Lincoln Catafalque," rebuilt yesterday by the court's carpentry shop, will hold the Marshall casket in the court's Great Hall as the public pays tribute, from 10:30 this morning until 9 tonight.
The casket will arrive at the court's front steps at 9:25 a.m., as an expected crowd of spectators lines up along the edge of the court's plaza. A little over an hour later, the public will be permitted to enter the Great Hall and file by the casket.
Mr. Marshall's funeral at 11 a.m. tomorrow at the Washington Cathedral on Wisconsin Avenue also will be open to the public.
Two Washington lawyers who worked, as Mr. Marshall did, in the civil rights movement, William T. Coleman and Vernon Jordan, will speak at tomorrow's services, as will Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist; U.S. Circuit Judge Ralph Winter, who was the first law clerk to Mr. Marshall when he became a federal judge, and Washington attorney Karen Hastie Williams, a former law clerk to Mr. Marshall at the Supreme Court, who also is his goddaughter.