Samuel Blatchford holds the distinction of being the first jurist to serve at all three levels of the federal judiciary, i.e., as a district court judge, as a justice of the court of appeals, and as a Justice of the United States Supreme Court. Portrait by Adrian Lamb
(Collection of the United States Supreme Court)
A small city may be understandably proud of any connection to a Justice of the United States Supreme Court. And even an obscure Justice may suffice for this purpose. But can Blatchford be considered truly obscure if he is able -- over a century after his death -- to inspire April Fool's Day parodies by legal scholars? For fun, see Samuel Blatchford: Not an Ordinary Justice. For a more dignified summary of Justice Blatchford's life and career, peruse his obituary: "Justice Blatchford Dead," New York Times, 8 July 1893.