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Samuel Austin Kingman

Samuel Kingman

Politician. Born: June 26, 1818. Married: Matilda Willetts Hartman, October 29, 1844. Died: September 9, 1904, Topeka, Kansas.

Born in Worthington, Massachusetts, on June 26, 1818, S. A. Kingman was educated in the local public schools and then moved to Kentucky, where he taught school and studied and practiced law for some 18 years. He also held local office (county clerk and county attorney) and served two terms in the Kentucky legislature, 1849-1851. Kingman married on October 29, 1844, to Matilda Willetts Hartman, who had been born in Pennsylvania in May 1822. After a short stay in Iowa, the family moved to Kansas in 1857, settling first on a farm and then in Hiawatha, Brown County. Kingman represented that county at the Wyandotte Convention and was elected, under the constitution he helped draft, to the state supreme court in December 1859; subsequently, he served as associate justice (1861-1865) and chief justice (January 1867-December 30, 1876) of the Kansas Supreme Court and was the first president of the Kansas Historical Society. Judge Kingman died on September 9, 1904, at home (corner of Seventh and Monroe Streets) in Topeka, where he had resided since 1872.

Kingman was a relatively active member of the convention, chairing the judicial department and serving on the ordinance and public debt and phraseology and arrangement committees. In addition to matters pertaining to the judiciary, Kingman spoke rather extensively on the homestead exemption, the "skullduggery," and the legislative branch.

Entry: Kingman, Samuel Austin

Author: Kansas Historical Society

Author information: The Kansas Historical Society is a state agency charged with actively safeguarding and sharing the state's history.

Date Created: June 2011

Date Modified: June 2016

The author of this article is solely responsible for its content.