Derby History Quiz
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Col. Wm. B. Wooster (L) with
three members of his Derby law firm who went on to become judges -
William H. Williams, Chief Justice David Torrance, and Edwin B.
Picture courtesy of the Derby Historical Society
Torrance was born in Scotland in 1840, but came to call
Derby his home. He served with distinction in the Civil War
as a captain in the 29th Regiment, C.V., Colored which was
commanded by Col. William Wooster of Derby. Under Wooster's
tutelage, he began the study of law. When the war ended, he
and his wife, Annie France, settled in Derby. He continued
to study under Colonel Wooster who was practicing in Derby.
He was admitted to the New Haven County Bar in 1868.
He represented Derby in the state
legislature in 1871 and 1872 and was elected Secretary
of State in 1879. He was appointed a judge in the
Court of Common Pleas in 1881 and continued his rise in the
judicial system until he was appointed Chief Justice
of the Supreme Court of Errors in 1901. Yale
University gave him an honorary degree in 1883 and he became
an instructor in the Yale Law School in 1893 and was
promoted to professor of the law in 1898. - not bad for
someone who had not graduated from college himself!
to Carolyn Ivanoff and Jamie Cohen for their assistance on this
answers were received from:
Dupke, Carmela M. D'Onofrio,
Rosalie Cota, Millie from Ansonia, Jack Vagnini, Marc J. Garofalo, Jim
Bartlett, Nick from Terryville,
Searles, Randy Ritter, Marilyn Mizii, John Whalen, John M. Rak, Eileen
Krugel, Mary Suess, James Allaire, Veronica McLeod, Bill Davidson, and
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