JACK BAKER and MICHAEL MCCONNELL went to the Hennepin County Courthouse in Minneapolis, Minnesota to apply for a marriage license on this date. County Clerk Gerald Nelson refused to issue the license because Jack and Michael were a same-sex couple, and marriage equality was unheard of.
Jack and Michael filed a lawsuit to force Nelson to issue the license, because Minnesota’s marriage laws had no explicit gender requirements that the applicant’s must be opposite-sex couples.
The District Court dismissed Baker v Nelson, and the case was appealed to the Minnesota Supreme Court.
In October 1971 the state Supreme Court dismissed the appeal, and said that restricting marriage to opposite-sex couples did not violate the Due Process Clause, because procreation created a compelling state interest that marriage preserved.