Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
Grant Wilson, John Fiske and Stanley L. Klos. Six volumes, New York: D. Appleton
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BELLOWS, Henry Adams, jurist, born in Walpole, New Hampshire, in October 1803; died in Concord, New Hampshire, 11 March 1873. His father's death in 1819 left him to support his mother and a younger brother and sister. The family owned a house in Westminster, Vermont, a smal1 village on the western bank of Connecticut river, and, living there, young Bellows taught in one of the public schools of Walpole, crossing the River daily. An opportunity offered for him to study law in the office of William C. Bradley, a leading man of his day, and although the time that must necessarily be devoted to study seriously curtailed the family income, the struggle was bravely maintained, until, in 1826, he was admitted to the bar, and, in 1828, opened an office in Littleton, New Hampshire Throughout these years of hardship his mother nobly seconded his efforts. For many years the young lawyer's life was a continual struggle with poverty; but his unswerving rectitude and professional devotion to the interests of others at last won recognition. He removed to Concord in 1850, a favorable opportunity offering through the appointment of Ira Perley to the supreme bench, and there he soon acquired a large practice. He could never bring himself to the extortionate methods so common in the profession, and such was his generosity that his actual receipts were largely consumed for the benefit of others. He was especially liberal in sustaining the Unitarian Church society of Concord, and gave more than a tenth of his income to its support. He was appointed associate judge of the Supreme Court in 1859, and after ten years of service m that capacity, became chief justice on the death of Judge Perley. An unusual fairness of mind marked all his decisions. He never, either as a practicing lawyer or on the bench of the Supreme Court, would lend his influence to defend an unjust cause or shield a criminal. Without extraordinary mental brilliance, he had, by nature, a rare thoroughness of method and soundness of judgment.
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