land, Oregon, to which city he had gone some months before.
He had graduated in law at the Columbian University and had
been admitted to the bar. He had also held a position in the
Riggs National Bank of Washington for some time to give him
A BUSY LIFE 119
a thorough knowledge of the banking business and had a posi-
tion in a trust company in Portland at the time of his mar-
riage, lie resigned that place and opened an office for real estate
business and the practice of law and has been very successful.
They lost their first child, a girl, who died when three days
old, but have one son, Earle Leonard, whom they think is the
smartest and best looking boy that ever was born, but it will
not do for me to give any opinion on that question as I have
several other grandsons whose parents have the same opinion
about them. They also have a young daughter, Helen Virginia,
born November 5th, 191 1.
I had intended that my youngest son should follow in the
footsteps of his brothers and go through college and therefore
sent him to Mt. Hermon (Moody's school for boys) to prepare
him for it, but his inclinations turned him in another direction.
He chose the business of an optician, and in preparation for his
work went through every branch from the bottom to the top.
^Vhen thoroughly prepared to set up in business for himself, I
started him at St. Joseph, Missouri, where he has been making
a great success and with good management there is no reason
why he may not in time become well to do. St. Joseph is the
home of my only brother, Israel E. Kimball.
It may be thought strange, with all my ancestors and my
children musical, that for more than forty years I have scarcely
ever been known to sing either in church or elsewhere. The ex-
planation is this. In my younger days I was very fond of sing-
ing and always went to Uncle Samuel's singing schools when
possible. The first case I ever tried as a lawyer was in the
fall of the year at a time when an overcoat was not needed in
the middle of the day but was very necessary after sundown.
I had no idea it would take so long to try it and left my over-
coat at my office. The case was against a life insurance com-
pany and hotly contested and was not finished until nine at night.
The room was close and hot and I went out into the frosty night
air much heated up and with my throat all relaxed. The next
morning I had a very bad sore throat. It entirely filled up so
that I was not able to swallow, not even water, for four days.
This throat trouble affected my vocal chords so that as soon as
I try to sing I become hoarse and have to stop, so I have ceased
tj try. It is a fortunate thing for me that it did not affect my
speech in the least and I have been able to speak in Court for a
whole day at a time without any trouble.
120 RECOLLECTIONS FROM
Judge of the Police Court.
On March 3, 1891, Congress provided for the appointment
of a second Judge for the Police Court of the District. This
provision was made to relieve the Judge of that Court, the work
having so greatly increased that one judge could not do it all.
I was then in the civil practice never having tried a criminal case
in my life. Either Judge Shellabarger or Judge Wilson of the
legal firm of Shellabarger & Wilson, asked me how I would like
to be a Judge of the Police Court. I told him I did not want
it. He then said that President Harrison had authorized him to
offer me the position. I then told him that I had not had
any practice in criminal cases and did not desire the position.
He talked with me some time about it and then left. A day or
so after that he came to me and again urged me to accept it.
He said he had reported my refusal to the President and the
President asked him to see me again and urge me to accept it.
I learned that the President was seeking for some one to fill
the position under the new law and had asked Judge Wilson if
there was any one whom he could recommend for appointment
and he recommended me strongly. On his second visit he urged
me so strongly that I finally said if the President desires it I will
accept and was given a recess appointment, expiring at the end
of the next session of the Senate. When Congress assembled
in December I was nominated and confirmed for a full term of six
years, expiring January, 1898. At the end of that term I was re-
appointed by President McKinley for a second term of six years
after being again confirmed by the Senate as I have heretofore
stated. My second term in office expired during the term of
President Roosevelt. He sent my name to the Senate for my
third full term of six years to expire January 10th, 1910, some
considerable time before my term expired, to avoid the rush and
push of those who wanted to succeed me. Neither of these ap-
pointments were without opposition, for no offices of that magni-
tude are without candidates who desired to fill them. The law
A BUSY LIFE 121
at the time of the expiration of the first term of my colleague,
Judge Miller, made no provision for holding over, or for the
appointment of a judge to act when a term expired, and this
gave me much trouble. I secured the passage of an Act making
the judge's term six years, or until his successor was confirmed
and qualified, so that a judge would hold over after his term
had expired. In securing this legislation I little thought I would
be the first one to be benefited by it. At the time my third full
term expired President Roosevelt had become an Ex-President,
and President Taft was the occupant of the White House. I did
not think I would have any trouble in securing my fourth term,
because I had been brought into very close contact with President
Taft when he was Secretary of War, and had visited him fre-
quently in connection with the erection of a Memorial Amphi-
theatre at Arlington, Virginia, and both he and I were mem-
bers of the commission to provide plans and make a report to
Congress. He, however, had made the Attorney General respon-
sible for all appointments in connection with the Department of
Justice under which my appointment came. Nearly forty Sena-
tors and Representatives in Congress wrote strong personal
letters to the President urging my re-appointment, and in addi-
tion, hundreds of the best citizens of the District wrote to him
urging the same thing. These letters were all referred to the At-
torney General, and whether they were ever read by him I have
no means of knowing, but he gave no weight to them or to the
personal appeals made directly to him by many prominent citi-
zens. I wrote to him asking him if there were any charges made
against me or any question about my re-appointment. If there
were I wanted to know what they were and to have a chance
to defend myself. That letter was never answered or even its
receipt acknowledged by him and no word whatever came to me
of any charges or objections made to him about me, and I have
no knowledge of any reason existing for his ignoring all my
In spite of the fact that I had been a soldier in the War of
the Rebellion, was an officer of high rank in the Grand Army
of the Republic, had been Department Commander and worked
for years for the old soldier, was endorsed in the highest terms
by the leading men of Congress of both parties and by hundreds
of business and professional men in the District of Columbia ; in
spite of my record of more than nineteen years of service ; in
122 RECOLLECTIONS FROM
spite of the fact that I was a Republican and that this was a
Republican administration : in spite of my personal acquaintance
with President Taft, I was not re-appointed, but the appointment
was given to another.
I held court for the last time on April 2d, 1910, nineteen years
and almost one month after my first appointment and nearly three
months after my last term of six years expired.
It is a great satisfaction to me in looking back over all these
years on the bench to know that I have had and still have the
good-will and commendation of the good citizens of the Dis-
trict, that my name is untarnished by any hint of wrong doing
and to have the satisfaction of knowing that in all the cases I
tried, which amounted to at least 150,000, I tried to do exact
justice, having first the interests of the District of Columbia at
heart and then the interests of the poor unfortunates who were
being tried. I have lived in the District of Columbia in the lime-
light of the public view for forty-eight years, and I believe that
no man living in Washington has more warm friends, more men
ready to speak words of commendation than I have. Not only
is this true of citizens of Washington, but it is extremely gratify-
ing to me that I have strong friends all over the United States
who became acquainted with me while representing their Dis-
tricts and States in the United States Congress.
In the Police Court, tragedy and comedy meet. I have had
many persons brought before me who were known all over
the land. Perhaps the best known was Carrie Nation, the cele-
brated wielder of the hatchet in her fight against the liquor traffic,
who has been tried in the Police Courts of many States. Her
first appearance before me was for attempting to make a speech
to the Senate from the galleries while the Senate was in session.
She made a big sensation. The second time was for creating
a disturbance in the street in front of a saloon. Judge Mullowney
has also tried her.
Robert N. Harper was a manufacturing druggist and was the
owner and manufacturer of a headache remedy. He was charged
on the complaint of the Agricultural Department with misbrand-
ing the remedy. It was the first case tried under the pure food
law and was watched by chemists and manufacturing druggists all
over the country. The jury found him guilty and while a mo-
tion for a new trial was pending, the President sent for the
United States District Attorney and urged him in the strongest
A BUSY LIFE 123
terms to insist on a jail sentence and this interview and demand
was immediately given ont at the White House. This created con-
siderable discussion in the newspapers and was taken up in
Congress as an attempt by the Executive to overrule the Judiciary.
There was no question that Harper had a perfect right to use the
ingredients he did use, and has continued to use in the prepara-
tion, but the point was made that when he put on the label the
statement, "This preparation contains no harmful or injurious in-
gredients," it was a misbranding, for the government claimed
that it did contain not only harmful and injurious but very
dangerous ingredients and that the statement would lead a
non-professional user to think that any quantity would be harm-
less, whereas it was claimed that over a certain amount was harm-
ful to any one.
It was shown, however, that Harper, before the trial, had
changed the statements on his labels and that no legal objec-
tion could then be made to them. Therefore, believing that
the remedy of the wrong had been secured and notice given to
the world of what the law meant, and especially as this was in
a sense a test case, I refused to impose a jail sentence, although
the District Attorney strongly urged it, but imposed the highest
fine provided by law. My refusal received universal commenda-
tion and I was highly praised because I did what I thought was
right even when the President urged a different action.
I remember one very laughable incident which I have told at
banquets as a good joke on me. I was trying a colored woman
charged by another colored woman with profanity and disorderly
conduct. The complaining witness was trying to impress me
with the outrageous language used by the defendant and as a
climax to her testimony and to press it home on my mind,
wound up with, "Why, your honor, the words she used were
awful, you yourself would not use such bad language as she
used." The courtroom was crowded with listeners to the testi-
mony and when the climax came, there was a roar of laughter
from everyone which could not be checked for some moments.
Could I remember all the amusing things that happened in
court, it would make one of the most laughable books ever
written, but while there w r as much of fun, most of the cases were
tragic. How often have I had broken-hearted mothers and fathers
come to me telling their tales about their sons and daughters.
How many wives have come to me in the same way telling me
124 RECOLLECTIONS FROM
about their husbands. I have known of children deserted in the
middle of the cold winter by their mothers and fathers for the
sake of the intoxicating cup. I have seen men and women start on
this downward road and year after year get lower and lower until
the inevitable end came. I would frequently go from court with
an aching heart and say, "Cannot something be done to stop the
sale of the accursed cup and save these weak ones?" But the
business of wrecking lives and homes still goes briskly on, homes
are still being broken up, parents are still being separated from
their children and children are being separated from the love of
parents and the comforts and cherishings of loving fathers and
mothers. Men, women and children are still going to eternal
death through the use of the intoxicating cup, and the govern-
ment does nothing but receive the license money, punish those
who commit wrong when drunk and provide work-houses, jails,
asylums and poorhouses for the victims.
Where I write this is in the near vicinity of several saloons
patronized mostly by young men of good families, earning good
incomes, who are following in the footsteps of those indicated
above. When I see them crowding into these saloons, my heart
aches for them and I remember the many such cases which I have
seen in my long life, coming to the end I have referred to, who
started the downward path with as good hopes and as brilliant
prospects as they have.
I have tried by word, deed and example to fight against this
evil. During my long years on the bench, many such tempted
men have come to me for my help and sympathy. They were
as anxious to break from their habits and live sober lives as I was
to have them, but were bound by chains of iron. How many such
cases come to my memory as I write.
A BUSY LIFE 125
My First Trip Abroad.
During my first five years of practice, I took no vacation, my
work was so pressing that I could not leave, and after that
although I took regular vacations, I supposed my vigorous health
and sound body and mind could stand any amount of work, and
it was not unusual for me to continue at my desk until a late
hour at night without taking time for my meals. The inevitable
happened, much to my astonishment, for in the fall of 1881 I
broke down. My symptoms were loss of memory, constant pain
at the base of the brain, thickening of the tongue so that I could
not articulate, and staggering like a drunken man. In the middle
of a sentence I would forget what I was talking about. My
doctor told me I would be a dead man in two weeks if I did not
instantly stop all work, that I must go to sea and do no work for
a year and I would be well again.
In three weeks I was at sea on the City of Rome, of the
Inman line, on my way to Liverpool. This was her first trip.
We sailed from New York on October 29th, 1881, and I reached
London on November 8th, after an exceedingly stormy passage.
The next day after reaching London, I saw that queer spec-
tacle, Lord Mayor's Day. On our passage we had some funny
experiences during the storm, but these I will not attempt to
describe. After I had been at sea three days all my bad symp-
toms disappeared and, as I am never sea sick, I enjoyed every
moment of the trip. Among the passengers were Mrs. Willson,
a daughter of the Rev. Dr. Budington of Brooklyn and a grand-
daughter of Dr. Gunton of Washington, and her son, daughter
and brother. Of these I was destined to see much for we
were all at the same boarding house during my four weeks in
London and went to Paris together and stayed there three weeks
at the Hotel de Dijon, at No. 29 Rue Can Martin. This made it
extremely pleasant for me. On first reaching London I went to
the Inns of Court Hotel, but a short time there made me home-
sick, and I know of no worse lonesomeness than to be alone in
the midst of a crowd like that in London, where no one will
i 2 6 RECOLLECTIONS FROM
speak to you or notice you. It is so different being- at an English
hotel from being at an American one. It is easy to make acquaint-
ances at an American hotel, but impossible at an English one. By
appointment I met at luncheon a fellow-passenger who was a
native of London, and he introduced me to the boarding house of
Mrs. E. Phillips, near the British Museum, where I found a very
pleasant home and boarded with her whenever I have been in
London since. There I found the fellow-passengers named above.
To one accustomed to our American hotels and their appoint-
ments, an English hotel seems very bare and its appointments and
arrangements crude. The Inns of Court had no such office as we
are accustomed to, but a small room in which a woman was to be
found acting as a sort of clerk. I did not go to my room the first
night until time to retire. A boy was sent to show me the way.
He showed me the "lift" and ran it. for they have no elevator boy,
but anyone wanting to use the "lift" runs it. The advertisements
of the hotel stated that it was equipped with the most modern
"lift." It seemed a very crude affair to me. In place of cables
it had a log chain covered with grease, and its speed was that of
the proverbial snail. When we arrived at my floor, the boy went
to a windowsill on which were many tallow candles, lit one and
showed me to my room, setting the candle on the mantle.
I looked for the gas burner, but could find none and had only the
one candle for light. As I intended retiring immediately, I con-
cluded to let it pass for that night and the next day get a room
with gas. The bed was an enormous four-poster, which looked
as though it had come down from the time of Queen Elizabeth,
as did the rest of the furniture.
The next morning I went to the woman in the little office and
asked her to give me another room. "Why do you want another
room?" she asked. I replied: "There is no gas in the room and
I want one with gas in it." "Gas, gas in your room," she said
with intense surprise ; "why there is not a hotel in all 'Lunon'
with gas in the bedrooms." And from what I could learn, she
was correct, so while I stayed at the Inns of Court Hotel I had
to be content with a tallow candle in my room at night, and I
found the same condition prevailed on the Continent, with this
difference, that on the Continent the guests were charged a franc
or a lira for each night's candle, so I always carried my own
candles and did not use those furnished by the hotels. At the
Hotel de Dijon, in Paris, we all used the sitting room of Mrs.
A BUSY LIFE 127
W'illson evenings, and one of us would buy candles by the pound
at the corner grocery and light ten or a dozen and thus have the
room fairly well illuminated. As I went from city to city I
always carried my unused candles to be used at the next hotel.
This habit played a joke on me, for at Rome I took all the
unmounted photos I had bought and had not sent home, to the
clerk at the photographer's to have them wrapped for mailing.
He came back in a moment laughing heartily, with a part of a
candle which I had handed him with the photos, and asked,
"Shall I send this, too?"'
Another illustration of the different mode of conducting the
hotel business in Europe was shown in the dining room at the
Inns of Court Hotel. The bill of fare was fastened to a standard
and set up before the guests, and as there were only a very few
for all, was quickly taken away to another. The bill of fare
showed that one could get roast beef at a certain hour, roast mut-
ton at another hour and so on through the list. If one wanted
roast beef and happened to come at the roast pork hour he had
to take that or wait. This is only a sample of the queer way
business was done.
London is a wonderful city and I enjoyed every day of the
four weeks I spent there on my first visit and each clay of my
subsequent visits. Americans, as a rule, see very little of it, and
hurry on to Paris. While in London I made a trip to Edinburgh,
one of the most beautiful and interesting cities in Europe, but as
it was in November it was too cold for much sight-seeing in
Scotland â€” that I did on my second trip abroad. I visited, how-
ever, the Castle and Holyrood in Edinburgh and Melrose Abbey
and Abbottsford, the home of Sir Walter Scott.
We left London the morning of December 3d, 1881, for Paris,
reaching there about eight o'clock p. m. the same day. One of
the first things that struck me was the difference in the cooking
in the two countries. In England everything appears to be soggy
and heavy, and to my mind, uneatable. In Paris or France all
food tastes good and is well cooked and palatable. The French
bread is the finest in the world and the English bread the worst.
I adopted the French style of meals, rolls and coffee at eight
o'clock a. m., breakfast at one and table d'hote dinner at six
Our landlady had spent several years in America and knew the
American tastes. Her husband was a French cook who could
128 RECOLLECTIONS FROM
speak no English. She ran the house and he the kitchen, and
what good meals he gave us ! Most of the guests were Ameri-
cans and it was there that I first met Dr. Henry M. Hurd, then
in charge of the State Insane Asylum at Pontiac, Mich., and
since, in charge of Johns Hopkins Hospital at Baltimore ; also
Mr. Davis a member of the firm of Hallett, Davis & Co., piano
manufacturers ; Mr. Clapp, member of the firm of Billings, Clapp
& Co., manufacturing chemists of Boston, and Dr. Hartsuff, a
surgeon in the regular army. We five became traveling com-
panions, sometimes, as at Naples, we would all be together and
at other times only Dr. Hurd and I, the others going to different
places as the mood struck them. Dr. Hurd and I finally separated
at Milan, he going to Paris and then to America, and I back to
Venice and from there through Austria, Germany, Belgium and
across a corner of Holland on my way to England, thence to the
An amusing incident occurred at this hotel. The main table
was a long one and so broad that two persons sat at each end.
The landlady sat at one end next to me. Ice cream in different
colored papers in the dainty French style was being served. The
waiter started with me, but when the platter came to the guest
on the other side of the landlady there was none left, seeing
which she asked the waiter in French, "Who took two?" I no-
ticed that after that there never was an occasion for her to ask,
"Who took two?" for there was always enough. She had
learned the lesson not to count the number of her guests in pro-
viding ice cream. When there is any shortage at my table, some
one is sure to ask, "Who took two?"
It would make my story too long to give full details of my trip
through Europe, and I will only speak of incidents here and there.
Christmas occurred on Sunday and I visited several different
Catholic churches of Paris, among others, the Madelaine, to see
the very elaborate services. That night, notwithstanding it was
Sunday, they had a ball at the hotel.
During the three weeks spent in Paris I made the usual rounds
and visited the public buildings, art galleries, museums and
churches and saw the many wonderful things gathered in them.
On one of my visits to the Madelaine I saw a funeral taking
place in one side chapel and a wedding in another at the same
time. I saw Paris at all hours of the twenty-four, to get an ideu
of Parisian life. The French of the middle and the lower classes
A BUSY LIFE 129
are noted not only for their thrift, but for their industry. This
was shown by a little incident I saw early one morning when I
went to the celebrated Halles Markets to see early Paris. A
countryman and his wife were just starting for home, having
sold out the market stuff which they had brought to the city in
a large two-wheeled cart. The wife was in the cart knitting for
all she was worth and the husband was pushing the cart. He did
not 'do this to keep his wife from walking, but that she might earn
a few centimes and the time of both not be lost while on the road.
I did not like the life in Paris, while love for beauty and great
artistic taste was shown in everything, everyone appeared to be