Firm History

The firm now known as Satterlee Stephens LLP dates back to 1894, when Herbert L. Satterlee (1863-1947) founded the firm, which was originally called Ward, Hayden & Satterlee. Mr. Satterlee, whose clients included Mark Twain and many of the most prominent corporate leaders of the day, was responsible for incorporating General Motors, a name which Mr. Satterlee suggested. In November of 1900, the marriage of Louisa Pierpont Morgan, daughter of J.P. Morgan, to Mr. Herbert Satterlee, in New York City was the social event of the season.

During its first century, the firm was the home for many talented and colorful attorneys. Harlan Fiske Stone (1872-1946) was a partner at the firm when it was known as Satterlee Canfield & Stone, and went on to become Dean of Columbia Law School, Attorney General of the United States, and ultimately Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Another Satterlee alumnus, Hugo Wilkinson Jervey, also served as Dean of Columbia Law School.

Satterlite Morris “Moe” Berg (1902-1972) exhibited talent of a different sort. For half of the year he was a lawyer with the firm and for the other half he was a catcher with the Brooklyn Dodgers, the Chicago White Sox and a succession of other teams. Berg is remembered for being fluent in twelve languages, although “he couldn’t hit in any of them" (lifetime average .243), and for his work with the OSS during World War II.

In 1987, Satterlee joined with Burke & Burke, another New York firm with a long and distinguished heritage, and took on the name, Satterlee Stephens Burke & Burke LLP. Now into its second century, with the shortened moniker Satterlee Stephens LLP, the mid-sized firm lacks any Major League infielders, but is proud to have skilled attorneys covering a wide range of traditional practice areas, including lawyers selected for inclusion in The Best Lawyers in America, Super Lawyers, Chambers USA and Who's Who Legal.