Graham & James

Graham & James LLP is a now-defunct law firm. It was founded as Graham & Morse by Chalmers Graham and Clarence Morse in San Francisco in 1934, and was renamed after Morse left the firm to become chair of the Federal Maritime Commission.[1] The firm was originally a small firm focused on the maritime industry.[2]

The firm was active in Asia as early as the 1950s, when it sent one of its lawyers to Tokyo.[2] It formed a strategic alliance with the Deacons law firm in Hong Kong and the Price Sanond law firm in Bangkok, operating in Asia under the collective name "Deacons Graham & James."[3]

With the bulk of its practice focused on the Pacific Rim, Graham & James was severely affected by the Asian economic crisis of the 1990s. By then, it was primarily an intellectual property and technology firm, with California and Asian offices.[4] Graham & James attempted to merge with the New York firm of Reid & Priest in 1991,[5] and also had a partnership with the Seattle law firm of Riddell Williams from 1995 to 1999.[6] As of June 1999 it had around 340 attorneys.[1] The alliance with Deacons dissolved in June 2000, with Deacons backing out due to G&J's failure to commit resources to Asia and dwindling position in US law firm rankings.[7]

In June 2000, it effected two transactions. Reflecting internal divisions among its partners and affiliates, most partners in the California, Tokyo and Beijing offices of the firm merged with Squire, Sanders & Dempsey,[8] while the New York office, largely devoted to pharmaceutical patent prosecution, merged with Greenberg Traurig.[4]


  1. 1 2 "About Graham & James". Graham & James LLP (archived at Archived from the original on September 10, 1999. Retrieved 1999-09-10. Check date values in: |access-date= (help)
  2. 1 2 "Alexander Calhoun" (PDF). The Asian Art Museum Oral History Project, UC-Berkeley. Retrieved 28 January 2015.
  4. 1 2 Cosmides, John (30 May 2001). "Law Firm Mergers: Managing & Dealing With Organizational Change". The Barustors Report. San Francisco, CA: The Cosmides Group. Retrieved 5 March 2013.
  8. Williams, Rochelle (30 June 2000). "Squire Sanders Announces Plans To Purchase Graham & James". Bond Buyer. Business Source Complete: EBSCOhost. 332 (30924): 3. ISSN 0732-0469. 3308660. Retrieved 5 March 2013.; see also
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