Tribute written in a newspaper upon the death in 1883 of Jeremiah Sullivan Black of Pennsylvania, lawyer, judge, Attorney General and Secretary of State under President James Buchanan and almost a member of the US Supreme Court, missing by just one vote.
Born in January 1810, he was the son of US Representative Henry Black and his wife Mary (Sullivan) Black. He married Mary Forward in 1836. Their son Chauncey Forward Black, born in 1839, had a distinguished career himself, as a writer and as Lieutenant Governor of Pennsylvania.
An Estimate of Judge Black.
The Philadelphia Times, edited by Alexander McClure, gives this estimate of the intellectual powers of Judge Black in a gracefully written tribute to his memory:
The death of Jeremiah S. Black will be more widely and profoundly lamented in Pennsylvania than would that of any of her many other noted citizens. Of all our distinguished men, whether Pennsylvanians by birth or adoption, Judge Black was the greatest in intellectual power of either the present or any past generation. Of his contemporaries, only two approached him in the grandeur of either legal or political disputation, and they will be readily recalled while the names of Thaddeus Stevens and William M. Meredith are green in the memory and pride of Pennsylvania. As a jurist he was the superior of both Stevens and Meredith; as a disputant he was unrivaled by either; as a statesman he lacked the skill and attributes of leadership possessed by Stevens and the profound discretion of Meredith; but, taken all in all, he was the greatest, grandest and noblest of Pennsylvania's sons. Others have achieved more of which the world takes note, but none have been greater in all the great attributes of public and private character.
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