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Samuel Blatchford, 1882-1893

SAMUEL BLATCHFORD was born on March 9, 1820, in New York, New York. At the age of thirteen, he enrolled in Columbia College and was graduated four years later. While serving as private secretary to the Governor of New York from 1837 to 1841, Blatchford studied law. After being admitted to the bar in 1842, he practiced with his father’s New York law firm for three years, and then joined a law firm in Auburn, New York. Blatchford compiled a twenty-four volume set of previously uncollected decisions of the United States Court of Appeals for the second Circuit. Although he was offered a judgeship on New York’s highest court, he chose to continue his law practice. Blatchford accepted his first judicial appointment on May 3, 1867, to the Federal District Court for the Southern District of New York. Five years later he was elevated to the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. On March 22, 1882, President Chester A. Arthur nominated Blatchford to the Supreme Court of the United States. The Senate confirmed the appointment two weeks later. Blatchford served on the Supreme Court for eleven years. He died on July 7, 1893, at the age of seventy-three.

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