As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 215, page iii
Appointed to the Appellate Court May 8, 1990, to take effect May 10, 1990.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 259, page iii
Senior Judge effective January 2, 2002.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 15, appendix pages 35 - 36
Was born at Norwich, on the 14th of June, 1769; was educated at Yale-College, where he graduated in 1788; studied law with Roger Griswold, Esq. (then practicing lawyer at Norwich, afterwards so distinguished as a jurist and a statesman,) and admitted to the bar, in 1791; settled in practice in his native place; was attorney for the state for New-London county, from 1814 to 1819; represented the town of Norwich in the General Assembly, in 1817, and in 1832; was a member of the Senate of this state, in 1819; represented this state in the Senate of the United States, from 1819 to 1825; was a judge of the superior court and of the supreme court of errors from May 1826 to 1829; was mayor of the city of Norwich from 1831 to 1834. He was also a member of the convention, which formed the constitution of this state, in 1818. He died at Norwich, on the 7th of August, 1841.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 6, page iii
Appointed [Judge of the Supreme Court of Errors] May, 1826.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 7, page iii
Resigned [as Judge of the Supreme Court of Errors], May 1829.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 212, page iii
Appointed to the Appellate Court September 29, 1989, to take effect October 4, 1989.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 253, page iii
Chief Judge [of the Appellate Court] effective March 12, 2000.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 154, pages 753 - 754
Benjamin M. Leipner, senior resident judge of the Superior Court in Fairfield County, died in the Bridgeport Hospital on March 20, 1967, at age sixty-three. Judge Leipner, born in New York City in June 22, 1903, the son of Samuel and Annie Leipner, came to Bridgeport with his family when he was five years old. He attended the old Shelton Grammar School in the north end of the city. He was graduated from Bridgeport High School in 1921, and he received his law degree in 1925 from New York University School of Law.
On January 19, 1926, Judge Leipner was admitted to the bar in Connecticut, and he became associated with Paul Gordon in the practice of law in the Newfield Building, in Bridgeport. He practiced law for some twenty-nine years before accepting a nomination from Governor Abraham A. Ribicoff to the Court of Common Pleas on March 1, 1955. On April 24, 1961, Governor John H. Dempsey nominated Judge Leipner for a term in the Superior Court to succeed Judge J. Howard Roberts, who was to retire on November 23, 1961.
On December 25, 1927, Judge Leipner married Jennie Grann, who passed away on November 15, 1960. They had two daughters, Mrs. Harriet L. Sherman, of Bridgeport, and Mrs. Marilyn L. Breslow, of Storrs. On July 29, 1962, Judge Leipner married Edith Nussenbaum, who survives him. He also is survived by a brother, Joseph Leipner, of New Haven, two sisters, Mrs. Augusta Mendelson, of Bridgeport, and Mrs. Helen Rothblat, of Willimantic, and six grandchildren.
Ben, as his host of intimates in every station of life knew him, was a happy, kindly man with many, many friends. He served as clerk of the City Court of Bridgeport from 1933 to 1935 and from 1937 to 1941. In 1936, he was elected as a representative from Bridgeport to the 1937 session of the General Assembly. Thereafter, in 1944, 1946, 1948 and 1950, he was elected to the Senate, and in the 1951 session, he served as majority leader. Meanwhile, he was a member of the board of education of the city of Bridgeport from 1943 to 1948. In 1949, he was nominated by Governor Chester Bowles as a judge of the city court of Bridgeport for the term ending in 1951.
Locally, Judge Leipner was very active in fraternal and civic affairs. He participated in Red Cross and Community Chest fund drives, and in 1955 he was chairman of the March of Dimes. Deeply religious, Judge Leipner was a former president of the Park Avenue Temple, in Bridgeport, and at the time of his death he was on its board of trustees. He was also a member of Temple Lodge 127, A.F. & A.M., and the Algonquin Club.
How ineffectual are words to describe our late counselor, confidant, and dear friend. As a lawyer and political associate, he was conscientious in his work and considerate of others. As a judge of the Superior Court, he was diligent, courteous, markedly competent, and esteemed by the bar and the litigant. As a husband and a father, he was loving and intimately close to his family always.
All of us, all of his friends and acquaintances, remember Benjamin M. Leipner with deep affection, and we share his family's sorrow.
*Prepared by Hon. Albert L. Coles, of Bridgeport.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 228, page 937
1909 - 1994
The Honorable Irving Levine, state trial referee, died on February 15, 1994, at the age of eighty-four.
Judge Levine was born in New Haven on February 22, 1909. He graduated from Hillhouse High School and Yale University, where he received his Ph.B. degree in 1930. He enrolled in the Boston University Law School, graduating in 1934 with an LL.B. degree. He was admitted to the Connecticut bar that same year. He served in the Army Air Force in England in World War II.
Judge Levine began his practice with the law firm of Abram W. Spiro in 1934. He served as tax attorney in Danbury in 1948, a member of the Danbury town council from 1948 to 1949, and as a judge of the Danbury City Court from 1949 to 1951 and 1955 to 1959.
In 1961, he became a judge of the Circuit Court and sat as a member of the Appellate Division of that court. He was elevated to the Court of Common Pleas in 1967 and the Superior Court in 1968, on which he served until he became a state referee in 1979. During his career on the bench, he developed a reputation for being very helpful to young lawyers.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 220, page 935
1917 - 1991
The Honorable Norton M. Levine, state trial referee, whose judicial career spanned more than twenty-four years, passed away on November 9, 1991.
Judge Levine was born in New Haven on August 10, 1917. He graduated from Hillhouse High School in 1933 and Yale College, where he earned his B.A. degree in 1937. While at Yale, he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa.
Judge Levine earned his law degree from the Yale Law School in 1940 and was admitted to the Connecticut Bar that same year. He served as a lieutenant in the United States Coast Guard during World War II.
Prior to his appointment to the bench, Judge Levine served two terms as the Democratic majority leader of the board of aldermen in New Haven and was a special assistant to the city's corporation counsel from 1953 to 1957. He served as Assistant Democratic Counsel to the state Constitutional Convention of 1965.
Judge Levine was appointed a judge of the Circuit Court in 1967. He was elevated to the Court of Common Pleas in 1969 and to the Superior Court in 1978. He elected to become a senior judge in 1982 and became a state trial referee on August 10, 1987. He served as a state trial referee until his death.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 223, pages 931 - 932
1918 - 1992
The Honorable Robert L. Levister, of Stamford, the first black member of the Connecticut Superior Court, died on October 17, 1992. He was seventy-four years old.
Judge Levister was born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, on October 25, 1918, the son of Robert L. and Emma Levister. He graduated from Johnson C. Smith University in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1939. He served in the United States Army during World War II. Following his military service, he enrolled in the Boston University Law School, where he earned his law degree in 1949. He was admitted to the Massachusetts Bar that same year.
Judge Levister practiced law in Boston from 1949 to 1955, at which time he moved to Stamford. He was admitted to the Connecticut Bar in 1956 and became Stamford's first black lawyer. He entered city politics and became an outspoken leader on civil rights issues, practicing law there until his appointment to the bench.
Judge Levister was appointed by Governor John N. Dempsey to be a judge of the Circuit Court in 1965. He became a judge of the Court of Common Pleas in 1974 and was elevated to the Superior Court by Governor Ella Grasso in 1976. During his tenure on the Superior Court, he served as administrative judge of the Stamford-Norwalk judicial district from 1978 to 1984. Judge Levister elected senior status in 1984 and reached the mandatory retirement age in 1988, after which he continued to serve the Judicial Branch as a state trial referee.
Judge Levister served on numerous boards in Stamford and at the state level. He was president of the Connecticut Council on Human Rights, a member of the state Board of Mental Health, the state study Commission on the Status of Women and the planning council for the Governor's Council on Human Rights and Opportunities.
Judge Levister was predeceased by his first wife, Lerlaine, who died in 1986. He is survived by his second wife, Clarice A. Levister, three sisters and two brothers.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 205, page 815
1913 - 1987
The Hon. Roman J. Lexton, who served in the judiciary for twenty-four years, died August 15, 1987, at the age of 74.
Born in Philadelphia on June 26, 1913, Judge Lexton moved with his family as a child to New Britain. He received his B.A. degree from Wesleyan University in 1936 and his LL.B. degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1939. He was admitted to the Connecticut bar and entered the private practice of law that same year.
Judge Lexton served in the Pacific with the United States Navy during World War II, returning to his law practice after his discharge from the service in 1945. He also served as Corporation Counsel for the city of New Britain from 1954 to 1956.
Judge Lexton became a judge of the New Britain City and Police Courts in 1959 and served in that capacity until January 1, 1961. He became a judge of the Circuit Court in 1967 and a judge of the Court of Common Pleas in 1974. He also served as chief administrator of that court from 1974 to 1978. He became a judge of the Superior Court in 1978 and served in that capacity until 1983, when he retired and became a state trial referee.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 54, pages 595 - 596
Andrew Clark Lippitt, son of Christopher and Marcia Gooding (Wilber) Lippitt, was born in Warwick, Rhode Island, May 21st, 1812, and died in New London, Connecticut, August 8th, 1884. He was married May 3d, 1842, to Lois Emeline, daughter of Amos Cobb, of Norwich, Connecticut, who, with two of three children born of the marriage, survives him. Having completed a preparatory course at the Plainfield Academy, an institution of some note in the early part of the present century, he entered Amherst College in 1833, and graduated in the class of 1837. He studied law in the office of Lafayette S. Foster, of Norwich, was admitted to the bar in June, 1839, and at once began practice at New London, where he continued to reside in the time of his death.
The habits of thrift and industry to which he was bred, the indefatigable energy that he brought to bear on every undertaking in which he engaged, his fine personal presence and attractive manners, and his thorough preliminary training, assured his professional success from the start. He at once took front rank among the younger members of the bar of his county, and within a few years was one of its acknowledged leaders. His active practice continued without interruption until a few months prior to his death.
Among the chief secrets of his success at the bar were his wonderful industry and persistency. He never failed to thoroughly identify himself with the interests of his clients, and every cause committed to his charge received conscientious and faithful attention. He was of a most sanguine temperament, and rarely entered upon the trial of a case, no matter how desperate the chances might be, without an abiding confidence that all obstacles could be surmounted. He never contemplated defeat until it overtook him. An abundant fund of common sense and ability of a practical every-day order brought him a measure of success that lawyers more subtle and profound often fail to achieve. His cases were always thoroughly prepared, and always tried for their full value at every stage from beginning to end. As an advocate he was remarkably effective. He never attempted flights of eloquence, but he had a rare faculty of putting the salient points of a case in plain and forcible Anglo-Saxon, refreshing to court and jury alike.
The younger members of the bar, who practiced with him when he had become a leader, will not forget the kind and considerate treatment, professional and personal, that they received at his hands. He was always ready with a word of encouragement or praise, and never failed to extend substantial aid whenever opportunity offered.
Mr. Lippitt in the years prior to the war of the rebellion took a somewhat active part in public affairs. He was a democrat in politics. In 1844 he represented the town of New London in the General Assembly, and his last public service was in the same capacity at the session of 1878. He proved himself on both occasions, a capable and faithful legislator. From 1850 to 1853 he was mayor of the city of New London, and in that position displayed executive ability of a high order. In 1860 he was a delegate to the national democratic convention which nominated Stephen A. Douglas for the presidency, and in the canvass that ensued he took an active part. When the rebellion broke out he joined the ranks of the war democracy, and during the four years following was an unwavering and enthusiastic supporter of the Union cause.
In his home life, after the professional duties of the day were done, Mr. Lippitt found his chief pleasure and almost his only recreation. He was a great reader of books and papers, always kept himself informed as to current events in the world's history, and had a passion for scientific and mechanical literature which he gratified to the fullest extent. During the rebellion he was a close and eager student of all military movements, keeping track of the armies of both sides evening after evening in his library, and many a time before the end of the great struggle came, he had, with that sanguine temperament to which allusion has already been made, fought the battle of the Union to a successful issue on the maps.
For a number of years prior to his death Mr. Lippitt had been a communicant of St. James's Protestant Episcopal church in New London. His life was that of a good citizen, a wise and honorable counsellor, a painstaking and competent public servant, a faithful friend and a loving husband and father.
*Prepared at the request of the Reporter by John A. Tibbitts, Esq., of the New London County Bar.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 152, pages 752 - 753
William S. Locke died on March 7, 1965, at the age of sixty. He was the ninth Reporter of Judicial Decisions of the Supreme Court of Errors since the first Kirby report, published in 1785. The terms of service in this position, one of the most important and exacting in the judicial department and in the state, thus averaged twenty years, and had he lived Mr. Locke would probably have exceeded the average. Three of the most distinguished of the reporters, in spite of opportunities to go on the Superior Court bench, held office for a remarkable amount of time: Thomas Day for fifty-one years, John Hooker for thirty-six years, and James P. Andrews for thirty years. Of all the reporters Mr. Locke was not exceeded by any in his grasp of the law and his ability to preserve it for bench and bar in the headnotes and index-digests of Supreme Court opinions appearing in twelve volumes of the Connecticut Reports.
I find the tribute of Chief Justice John H. King to Mr. Locke, at the time of his death, both appropriate and expressive, and with his permission I reproduce it here: "The death of William S. Locke marked the passing of one of the most brilliant legal scholars I have ever known. . . . To his work as Reporter of Judicial Decisions he gave unstintingly of his time, energy, and profound knowledge of the law. The quality of his work during the period of nearly twelve years in which he held that position is manifest in the Connecticut Reports from Volume 140 to date, and in cumulative digests covering those reports. Even though he had a mind which was clear, disciplined and analytical far beyond the ordinary, he also had a warm, loyal, conscientious character which won for him the affection of all those privileged to know him."
With such a tribute from one of Connecticut's most distinguished jurists, little more need be said about the good fortune of Connecticut to have had Mr. Locke's services as reporter for even a comparatively short span of time.
Born in Denver, Colorado, on September 20, 1904, Mr. Locke was graduated from high school there in 1922, and from Princeton University in 1926. He received his LL.B. from Harvard Law School in 1929, was admitted to the Connecticut bar that year, and joined the firm of Perkins, Wells, Davis and Schaefer, which subsequently because Wells, Davis, Schaefer and Locke.
In 1939 he was appointed clerk of the Hartford Probate Court, a position which he held for thirteen years. He was appointed Reporter of Judicial Decisions in 1953 and served in that capacity until his death. An authority on probate law, he taught at the Hartford College of Law and its successor, the University of Connecticut School of Law. He wrote a three-volume treatise on Connecticut probate practice with P. Corbin Kohn which is the standard work on this subject in this state.
A member and former director of the University Club of Hartford, he was a familiar and welcome figure there and could frequently be seen walking through Bushnell Park, summer and winter, from the Supreme Court Building to the Club for lunch. He was a former president of the Hartford Bar Library Association, treasurer and a former secretary of Swift's Inn, a legal association, and a former secretary of the Hartford Get-Together Club. He wrote many articles for the Connecticut Bar Journal.
Bill Locke had a delightful domestic life in an attractive home on a hillside in Bloomfield. He was blessed with a charming and gracious wife, Mrs. Alice Bailey Locke, and a son, Arthur B. Locke, a young lawyer who has recently started to practice law with the firm of Shepherd, Murtha and Merritt. Other survivors are two brothers, Raymond W. Locke, of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Edgar R. Locke, of Brisbane, Australia, and two sisters, Miss Mabel Locke, of Moscow, Idaho, and Miss Martha Locke, of Pullman, Washington.
*Prepared by Hon. Richard H. Phillips, of Farmington.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 68, pages 594 - 596
DAVID BENJAMIN LOCKWOOD, who died at Bridgeport on the 19th day of January, 1897, was born in Weston, Conn., January 7th, 1827, and prepared for college at the Staples Academy in Easton. From there he went to Middletown, and entered Wesleyan University, from which he graduated in 1849, with the degree of B.A., to which the university in later years added the degree of M.A. After his graduation he studied law for a short time with the Hon. Thomas B. Osborne of Fairfield, and subsequently removed to Bridgeport. Here he entered the office of Judge Sidney B. Beardsley, where he completed his course of study and was admitted to the bar in 1851. He commenced practice in Bridgeport, but after a few years removed to New York City and engaged in his profession there until 1861, when he again took up his residence in Bridgeport, which continued to be his home until his decease. In 1862 he enlisted as a private in the 2d Connecticut Light Battery and served until the close of the war, participating in many engagements, among them Gettysburg, Blakeley and the sieges of Forts Morgan and Gaines, returning with the rank of first sergeant. He resumed the practice of law in Bridgeport in 1867, and from 1869 to 1871 served as the first judge of the City Court, and during the remainder of his life was generally called "Judge" Lockwood by virtue of the title thus obtained. In 1875 and 1883 he was chosen representative to the General Assembly, and held the office of city attorney in the years 1880 and 1885.
My first acquaintance with Mr. Lockwood began in 1867, when I was looking for a lawyer who would allow me to register my name with him and pursue the study of law under his instructions. He met my advances with that kind cordiality of manner which ever characterized his conduct toward those younger than himself, and especially those who desired his aid, and I was at once enrolled as a student in his office, becoming his partner upon my admission to the bar in January, 1871. The partnership thus formed was only terminated by his lamented death.
Judge Lockwood was a gentleman of rare legal attainments. He not only knew, almost instinctively, what the law should be in any given case, but he had the rare faculty of knowing where to find the authorities to sustain his position. No one knows this fact better than members of this bar who have so often called upon him to furnish them the information that would give them a starting point from which they could find authorities, or unravel the apparently tangled threads of legal decisions. His time in this direction was always at the command of members of the profession, and he would lay aside the most pressing work in his hands to help his brother attorney find the sought-for-authority, or to give him information upon points of practice not to be found in the books, but which, from his long experience, were as familiar to Mr. Lockwood as the tools of his trade to the most skilled mechanic. He was especially kind and considerate to the younger members of the bar, being always willing to counsel and advise them without charge, and to take them into cases with him, where they could gain experience and attract attention that would be of value to them in their profession. In all my years of association with him he never so much as intimated that he was entitled to any special consideration from those whom he had assisted and counseled. His help to his fellowmen was not confined to his profession alone; and many in the humble walks of life mourn his loss as sincerely as he will be mourned by any of his associates.
For years he was one of the foremost figures at the bar of this county, and his services were eagerly sought for by clients. While he was strong and learned in the civil branch of the profession, yet he had a liking and a talent for the criminal side of the law, which, with his ingenuity in the management of cases, his powers of oratory and cross-examination, and knowledge of the law relating to criminal causes, made him much sought after to take up the defense; and he appeared as a prominent figure in almost every criminal cause of consequence tried in Fairfield county from 1868 to within a short time before his decease. In the trial of causes, while zealous in the interests of his client, and quick, and sometimes sharp, in his repartee, his words never left a sting, and he never harbored a resentment against those who opposed him, no matter how severe or cutting the retort might be. His utter inability to entertain or cherish a spirit of resentment over matters arising in his practice, was one of the charming features of his personality, and might well be emulated by those of his associates who survive him. So marked were his personal, friendly and genial characteristics, that in the latter years of his life he came to be called by the younger members of the profession, though with respect and veneration, "Uncle Ben."
His knowledge of books was not confined alone to the law. He was a student in other paths of literature and in the arts and sciences, and to him a new book was an inviting, unexplored pathway, which he loved to pursue to the end; and his sole personal extravagance, if extravagance it can be termed, was the accumulation of books, of which he had a large and valuable collection. He was the originator of the Act establishing the Fairfield County Law Library Association, under which the law library has grown to such proportions, and was the first to move in the matter of obtaining an appropriation from the county commissioners towards its support. He was equally active in the establishment of the Bridgeport Public Library, and served as a member of its board of directors from its organization to his decease.
As a soldier in the late war. his comrades vouch for his courageous and manly bearing and patriotic and unselfish service. As a citizen he filled every position to which he was called, with unswerving fidelity, courtesy, and ability. As a husband and father he was kind, affectionate and loyal, and as a friend he was staunch, true and kind hearted.
*Prepared at the request of the Reporter by Alfred B. Beers, Esq., of the Fairfield County bar.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 276, pages 937 - 938
The Honorable Alva P. Loiselle died on December 22, 2005, at the age of ninety-five. Justice Loiselle was a longtime Willimantic resident who served more than twenty-eight years in the Connecticut judiciary. Justice Loiselle was born in Willimantic on July 4, 1910, and attended Windham High School. He graduated from the University of Connecticut in 1934, and received his law degree from the University of Connecticut School of Law in 1943. Upon graduation, he was admitted to the Connecticut bar that same year.
Justice Loiselle was a member of the Windham County Bar Association, the Connecticut Bar Association and the American Bar Association. He served as corporation counsel for the city of Willimantic and town counsel for the towns of Windham, Mansfield and Canterbury. Additionally, he served as an instructor at the University of Connecticut from 1946 to 1952.
During his twenty-eight years on the bench, Justice Loiselle served on several of the Connecticut courts. He served as a judge on the Court of Common Pleas from 1952 to 1957. In 1957, he was appointed a judge of the Superior Court where he served for fourteen years. Additionally, he served as the chief judge of that court from 1970 to 1971. He was appointed an associate justice of the Connecticut Supreme Court in 1971. During his tenure as a justice on the Supreme Court, Justice Loiselle sat on a total of 1551 cases, of which he authored 224 majority opinions, six concurring opinions and fifteen dissenting opinions. He also served as chair of the Superior Court rules committee.
Justice Loiselle retired from the Supreme Court in 1980 upon reaching the mandatory retirement age of seventy. Following his retirement from the Supreme Court, Justice Loiselle continued as a member of the Connecticut judiciary, working as a judge trial referee, in which capacity he heard numerous Superior Court cases. Until 1998, he also worked on the appellate preargument conference settlement program.
Justice Loiselle was honored in 1966 by the University of Connecticut when he was presented with the Distinguished Alumni Award. The honor was in recognition of his outstanding professional, personal and civic achievements as a former student of the University of Connecticut who brought pride and distinction to the University. Additionally, one of the moot court competitions at the University of Connecticut School of Law is named in honor of Justice Loiselle.
Justice Loiselle was predeceased by his first wife, Genevieve Bernard Loiselle, and by his second wife, Laura Rowan Loiselle, and was survived by four nieces and nephews.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 161, page iii
Appointed to the Supreme Court April 21, 1971, to take effect May 14, 1971.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 181, page iii
Retired July 4, 1980, under constitutional limitation as to age.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 135, pages 727 - 729
Augustine Lonergan died at his home in Washington D. C., on October 18, 1947, ending a distinguished career as a lawyer and statesman.
He was born in Mechanicsville, in the town of Thompson, Connecticut, on May 20, 1874, and received his early education in the public schools of Rockville. He soon formed an ambition for a legal career, studied nights and became a law clerk in the office of Perkins and Perkins in Hartford. In 1902 he was graduated from the Yale School of Law. He was, however, admitted to practice in 1901.
He opened an office for the general practice of law at 26 State Street, Hartford, and in a short time developed an extensive practice which carried him into all counties of the state. He had a sound and analytical mind and rugged constitution which enabled him to labor industriously. He was active before the courts and was particularly adept in the trial of jury cases. A noted judge before whom such a case was successfully pleaded declared: "He carries to the jury the conviction of honesty." The bar was to him always a profession and never a business. No worthy client was ever turned away because of lack of funds. He felt that the practice of law imposed a duty to assist the public in time of adversity and exemplified this idea when he represented, entirely without compensation, all of the depositors of the Windsor Locks Bank and Trust Company in the receivership proceedings involving that institution.
He became active in public affairs as a liberal Jeffersonian Democrat and remained such throughout his lifetime. In 1910 he was appointed assistant corporation counsel of Hartford. He was a director of the Hartford Chamber of Commerce and the St. Francis Hospital and president of the Diocesan Bureau. He was a member of the American, State and Hartford County Bar Associations, the District of Columbia Bar Association, and the Bar of the Supreme Court of the United States.
In 1912 he entered public life as the nominee of his party for Congress from the first district and was the first Democrat elected to represent this district in twenty years. He was again elected in 1916 and 1918. He was a warm admirer of President Woodrow Wilson and his policies and was a staunch advocate of the League of Nations. He worked closely with Carter Glass for the establishment of the present federal reserve system.
In 1922 he resumed the practice of law in Hartford with an office at 49 Pearl Street. His interest in government was so keen and so well known that he was sought after as a public speaker in this and other states. At one time or another he spoke in every town in Connecticut. He had the ability to express his views on any subject in simple, direct and understandable language which carried conviction to his audience.
In 1930, at the earnest solicitation of national party leaders, he again accepted the nomination for Congress and was elected for the fourth time. In 1932 his party made him its nominee for the United States Senate and he became the first Democrat to be elected to that high office since 1874 and the first one ever elected by popular vote. He became a recognized authority in the Senate on matters of banking, taxation and public finance. His study on taxation was so extensive and so complete that the treasury department requested the use of his data, which is still the basis for some of our tax laws.
At this point in his career he presented a striking appearance with a heavy set body, handsome face with regular features, brown eyes, ruddy complexion, a determined chin and a pleasant countenance, all topped by a shock of iron gray hair. He was easy to meet and kind and considerate to all. His support for public office came from adherents of both parties.
He advocated all progressive social legislation throughout his terms of office. He was among the first to press for enactment of the Social Security Act, unemployment compensation and public health insurance. He sponsored the act establishing the present federal probation system. He generally supported the program of the Roosevelt administration but broke with it on measures which he believed to be basically unsound.
He opened an office in Washington D.C., for the general practice of law in 1939, retaining his residence, however, in Hartford, and his interest in Connecticut. Failing health forced his retirement early in 1947.
His interest in his profession and in public affairs was surpassed only by his loyalty and devotion to his family. In 1921 he was married to Lucy Waters, daughter of a prominent Washington physician. She survives, together with four daughters, a granddaughter and a brother.
Endowed with a remarkable memory, which he carefully trained, he never forgot a name or a face and was wont to astonish those whom he knew only casually and seldom saw by calling them by name and remarking on the incidents of their last meeting.
Although an appointment in the Superior Court was open to him and later one to the federal bench, he declined both.
His outlook on all subjects was broad and tolerant. It may truly be said of him: "He was charitable toward all, and bore malice toward none." His career vividly illustrates the opportunities open in this great country to one of humble origin, willing to devote himself assiduously to his goal, and having the ability and perseverance in work toward the achievement of his ambition.
*Prepared by Hon. Thomas J. Molloy, David A. Wilson and John C. Blackall, of the Hartford bar.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 228, pages 933 - 934
1914 - 1993
The Honorable Joseph S. Longo, state referee and former associate justice of the state Supreme Court, died November 29, 1993, at the age of seventy-nine.
Judge Longo was born in Norwich on September 22, 1914. He graduated from Norwich Free Academy and Yale University, where he received his B.A. degree in 1936. He enrolled at the Boston University School of Law, where he received his law degree in 1939. He was admitted to the Connecticut bar that same year.
Judge Longo entered the practice of law in Norwich in partnership with Attorney James J. Dutton, Jr., and later served in the United States Navy during World War II. His political career included terms in the state House of Representatives from 1949 to 1951 and in the state Senate from 1951 to 1955. He was majority leader and chair of the Judiciary Committee during the 1955 session.
Judge Longo became a judge of the Norwich City Court in 1949. In 1957, he was nominated and confirmed to be a judge of the Court of Common Pleas. He was elevated to the Superior Court in 1959 and served on that court until 1975. During his tenure on the Superior Court, he served as chief judge from 1973 to 1975. Judge Longo became an associate justice of the Supreme Court in 1975 and served in that capacity until becoming a senior associate justice in 1979. He became a state trial referee in 1984 and continued to hear cases until the early 1990s.
At the time of his death, Chief Justice Ellen A. Peters noted: "Justice Longo's appointment to the Supreme Court was the culmination of a long and distinguished judicial career. As a judge of the Norwich City Court, the Court of Common Pleas and the Superior Court, Justice Longo epitomized the fair and hardworking jurist. On the Supreme Court, he continued to demonstrate his love for the law and for the betterment of society through the rule of law. To his colleagues as well as to those who argued before him, he was a much admired member of this court."
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 167, page iii
Appointed to the Supreme Court effective February 7, 1975.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 179, page iii
Senior Judge effective September 24, 1979.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 76, pages 709 - 711
Dwight Loomis, born July 27th, 1821, in Columbia, Tolland county, was the son of Capt. Elam Loomis, a respected farmer. His mother, Mary Pinneo, was of French descent. His first ancestor in this country was Joseph Loomis, who came from England in 1638 and settled in Windsor. His general education was gained in the public schools of his native town, and in the academies at Munson and Amherst, Mass. After teaching for some years, he began the study of law in the spring of 1844 with Hon. John H. Brockway of Ellington, completed it in the Yale Law School, was admitted to the bar in Tolland county, in 1847, and, associated with Mr. Brockway, commenced practice in the then village of Rockville, the first of his profession to locate there. He soon gained public confidence and professional success. He represented Vernon in the General Assembly in 1851, the twenty-first senatorial district in 1857, was a delegate to the Republican National Convention at Philadelphia in 1856, and the representative of the first district in the thirty-sixth Congress, and again in the thirty-seventh after a unanimous renomination. The larger part of his service in Congress was during a time of national distraction and peril, and Mr. Loomis was found among the most steadfast and able members who loyally upheld the Union. He was elected a judge of the Superior Court in 1864, reelected in 1872, became a judge of the Supreme Court of Errors in 1875, and thus remained until disqualified by age. After leaving the bench he was chosen a State referee, and held the office the rest of his life. Yale University conferred on him the degree of LL. D. in 1896. In 1892 he removed from Rockville to Hartford.
Happily his life was active to the very last. Judicial service ended, his counsel and aid in legal matters were much sought, but he did not act as advocate. He arbitrated some important questions, was for a time a lecturer in Yale Law School, wrote the Judicial and Civil History of Connecticut in collaboration with J. Gilbert Calhoun, and discharged all his duties as a State referee. It was during his return from a hearing in that capacity at Torrington, that, by a sudden stroke, the end came September 17th, 1903.
Judge Loomis brought to the bench an uncommon union of fitting qualities. With a competent knowledge of law and a natural love of justice were joined an accurate legal perception, the habit of thorough investigation, and a rare judicial temperament. He was ready of comprehension, patient in hearing, deliberate of decision, dignified without assumption, considerate of every one, clear in rulings and charges to juries, administering justice with due respect of law but with all practicable kindness, and an impartiality never suspected, for it was beyond reach. He had that industry which answered every call of duty, and possessed no disturbing frailties of temper.
Nature, learning and character combined to qualify him as a trial judge, and to win for him the highest esteem and confidence. His able and important service in the Supreme Court will now best appear from those reported opinions of the court written by him. They are vigorous, logical, confined to the decided points, and usually cite supporting authorities. They satisfy the student, for they leave no doubt of their meaning or scope, being free from cumbrous elaboration and confusing rhetoric, while they show the clear thinker and the broad and learned jurist. A good example is the opinion in Regan v. New York & New England Railroad Co., 60 Conn. 124.
The professional and public life of Judge Loomis illustrated his private life and character. He was modest, with the simple manners of earlier days, a regular and generous supporter of good objects, making moral and religious principles his law of life. Without conceit or self-assertion, he was independent in opinion, with abundant will and energy in action. Always found in the way of duty, with a sound and dispassionate judgment, he was a trusted example, and exerted a wide and worthy influence.
His social nature was domestic rather than general, and found its greatest enjoyment in his home. Yet he was genial, hospitable, a firm friend, and interesting in conversation, where good sense was enlivened by a quaint and copious humor. Diversions show a person's tastes better than vocation. Judge Loomis relished nothing coarse. He enjoyed nature, travel and music, loved flowers and their culture, and in their season they beautified his home. He was familiar with poetry, and was ready with an apt quotation from a favorite author. Under favorable circumstances he might have been "one of the rhyming race," for he had the gift of easy versification, mostly shown in letters to his daughter, which were always in rhyme.
It was consistent that a life so pure, useful and honorable, found age "as a lusty winter."
*Prepared by the Hon. David S. Calhoun of Hartford, at the request of the Reporter.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 42, page iv
Elected [to the Supreme Court of Errors] by the General Assembly, at its May Session in 1875, to fill the vacancy caused by the resignation of Judge Phelps.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 61, page iii
Retired at the expiration of his term, June 3d, 1891, near the close of his 70th year.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 79, pages 730 - 731
Solomon Lucas, an honored and prominent member of the bar, died suddenly in the Superior Court room at Norwich, on March 13th, 1906. He was born in that city on April 1st, 1835, the sixth son of Samuel and Elizabeth Miles Lucas.
Mr. Lucas was entirely a self-educated man. Left an orphan while but a child, with no provision made for his support, his life became one of toil upon the farm and in the factory until he reached the age of nineteen years. Nothing daunted by the fact that his education at this time consisted simply of what he had been able to learn in the country schools, he resolutely set about fitting himself for his chosen profession, that of the law. By studying evenings and teaching school, he was enabled to take a course in the Albany Law School, after which he read law for a time in the office of the Hon. John T. Wait in Norwich, and was admitted to the New London County bar in 1861, from which time to the very moment of his death he continued in active practice. He was married on June 22d, 1864, to Elizabeth A. Crosby, daughter of the late Hiram Crosby of Norwich. His wife died ten years later and he never remarried. Two daughters, Miss Nancy E. and Miss Mary C. Lucas, survive him.
Mr. Lucas' career at the bar was a successful and an honorable one. He was a thorough master of the deep-lying principles of law, and his untiring industry, his keen insight, and his faithfulness to the interests of his clients, won for him confidence and a place in the very front ranks of the profession. In the preparation of cases he was painstaking to the last degree; in their trial he was forceful and alert. In 1889 he was appointed State's Attorney for New London County, an office for which he was admirably fitted, and which he held with distinction until his death. His powers as a cross-examiner of witnesses made him a terror to evil-doers. He was fearless in the discharge of his duties, and although at heart kind and sympathetic, he never allowed his feelings to interfere with his strong sense of justice. He deeply recognized the truth that he stood as the protector of the law-abiding community against the criminal.
In 1863 Mr. Lucas represented the town of Preston in the legislature. Although one of the youngest members, he won the approval of his constituents and recognition throughout the State. After this brief term of service he persistently refused to accept any political office, preferring to give his whole time and energy to the growing demands of his profession.
As a citizen Mr. Lucas was enterprising and public-spirited. He gave his services and keen penetration freely to the town, and his private enterprises were of a character to add to the general welfare. The same loyalty and devotion was shown in relations with the Second Congregational Church of Norwich, of which he was a member for forty-two years.
He was a man of simple tastes, fond of outdoor life and nature, but found his chief pleasure in his home. Only those who knew him intimately understood his deep, affectionate nature. He was a man of superb physical and moral courage, and the world is better for his life.
*Prepared by Arthur M. Brown, Esq., of the New London County Bar, at the request of the Reporter.
As Printed in the Connecticut Reports, volume 152, pages 753 - 756
Harry H. Lugg loved the law, the Navy and Yale, and to each in turn he gave the fullest measure of his energies and devotion. He would understand the traditional anticlimactic position of his alma mater as stated but in no other way would he tolerate any downgrading of that institution.
Judge Lugg was appointed to the Court of Common Pleas in 1961. Not long thereafter came the onset of the progressive malady which on March 23, 1965, ended his career at the age of fifty-two. He was born in Derby, Connecticut, on February 22, 1913, where he attended grammar and high school. His parents, Harry G. and Viola Hager Lugg, to whom he was deeply devoted, were of modest circumstances, requiring his undergraduate and law school expenses at Yale to be supplemented by his own labors. Nevertheless, he was graduated from Yale College in 1934 cum laude, and he also found the time to participate in the Thomas Swan Barristers' Union in Yale Law School, from which he was graduated in 1937.
The lure of New York practice was felt by him no less than by so many of his contemporaries. After being admitted to practice in Connecticut in 1937, he left the Connecticut scene and for the following two years labored in the field of New York corporate law but was not enamored of the experience.
He was admitted to the New York bar in 1939 only shortly before ho returned to Connecticut to join the late Donald C. Fisk in the latter's office in Rockville. It did not take Harry Lugg long to appreciate that he had found his niche. He liked being a "country lawyer", he liked Rockville, which was perhaps not too different from his native Derby, and the community liked him.
Three years later this phase of the young lawyer's career was ended abruptly by World War II. Commissioned as an ensign in the Navy in 1942, Harry Lugg saw active duty in the Pacific theater, serving in the New Guinea campaign, in the assaults on Lingayean and Okinawa and in the liberation of the Philippines.
At the war's end he returned to Rockville to a new partnership of Fisk and Lugg and plunged into community affairs. He was elected to the General Assembly from Vernon in 1946, and he took his seat in the House of Representatives in January, 1947, next to a vivacious and gracious freshman legislator from New Haven, Elizabeth B. Gillie, the daughter of an illustrious Navy family. They were married less than a year later on December 6, 1947, at New Haven.
Harry Lugg had a seemingly insatiable capacity for work. In addition to a thriving law practice, he was at the same time counsel for the town of Vernon, corporation counsel for the city of Rockville, prosecuting attorney of the Rockville City Court, and active in Republican party affairs, being a delegate to the national convention in 1948, as well as continuing his interest in the Navy as a member of the naval reserve, in which he later held the rank of lieutenant commander. He was a former president of the Tolland County Bar Association and also a member of the Connecticut and American Bar Associations. He was a member of the legislative committee of the Connecticut Bar Association and later its chairman, a member of its court reorganization committee and chairman of its committee on uniform laws. He was admitted to the United States District Court for Connecticut and for the Southern District of New York. He was also admitted to the Second Circuit of the United States Court of Appeals and to the United States Supreme Court. In 1951 he was appointed commissioner of the National Conference on Uniform State Laws and in 1952, a vice-chairman of its legislative committee.
The above recitation of bar and court affiliations as well as related activities is remarkable not only for its length but also because it was crowded into a period of approximately six years dating from his return to Rockville after the war.
He found time during the same period to serve as a member of the board of trustees of the Rockville Public Library, of which he was later president and on the Connecticut Veterans Advisory Commission, and he held memberships in the Yale Club of Hartford, the Hartford Club, the University Club of Hartford, the Officers' Club of Hartford, the American Legion, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, and the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks of Rockville. He was master of ceremonies at countless civic dinners and functions and was always ready to assist in community projects. When the town of Vernon needed a chairman for its 150th anniversary celebration, quite naturally it turned to Harry Lugg.
In 1953, he was appointed director of the Legislative Council of the state of Connecticut and proceeded at once with characteristic vigor to raise its standards as a research arm of the legislative branch of the state. One of his greatest sources of satisfaction in this position came from giving law students and young lawyers new at the bar an opportunity to work with the council, thereby affording them a first-hand knowledge of how legislative decisions are made. Harry Lugg succeeded Robert A. Wall, now a judge of the Superior Court, as Legislative Commissioner in 1958 and completed the monumental task of revising the General Statutes which resulted in the blue-bound set of eleven volumes. He continued his avid interest in uniform laws, serving as Connecticut chairman of the Commission on Uniform Laws in the United States and as a member of the executive committee of the National Conference on Uniform State Laws. This activity and interest were reflected in the adoption by Connecticut of the Uniform Commercial Code and a host of other uniform measures.
Harry Lugg continued to serve as Legislative Commissioner of the state until he was appointed to the Court of Common Pleas in 1961. Judge Lugg was a product of Connecticut, and he left his mark on the institutions of the state to which he gave his services. He understood the fundamentals which make a system of government work, and he understood the legislative and judicial processes. Had he lived, his future advancement in the court system could have been readily charted. Those who were privy to his expressed ambitions knew that he looked forward to a long judicial career, and there was none who doubted his attainment of that goal.
Harry Lugg had a magnificent way with people. Although his intellect towered above most, he had the facility of being able to meet everyone at his own level. When conversing with friends on an obscure legal theory or a nearly forgotten point of military strategy, he could surprise his listeners with a pun, and the laughter which followed filled the room with merriment.
During the last year or so of his life, after the fatal malady had left its crippling effects upon him, he continued to attend to his duties on the court. His wife, who survives him, shared the burdens of the final months and offered her quiet encouragement for him to do what he felt he must. Only about a month before his death did he seek the disability retirement which undoubtedly he could have had months before. Of such a caliber was his personal courage and devotion to duty.
Judge Lugg's professional career and service on the bench ended at an age when many another judicial career begins. Yet, in his relatively short life he achieved a full lifetime of service, almost as though he knew what fate held. Ability and service burned bright before the light went out. The afterglow remains.
*Prepared by Robert D. King, of the Rockville bar.
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