John M. Shirley papers, 1866 - 1881Manuscript MS-1312

Biography

John Major Shirley was born on November 16, 1831, in Sanbornton, NH. He began the study of law with Cate and Rogers at Sanbornton Bridge in 1850, and was admitted to the Belknap County Bar in 1854. In October of 1855, Shirley went into partnership with Samuel Butterfield. He continued and expanded his law practice after Butterfield's death in 1860. Shirley was postmaster from 1855-1859, representative from 1859-1860, superintendent of schools from 1862-1865 and delegate to the constitutional convention of 1876. He was also a reporter for the New Hampshire Supreme Court from 1871-1876. In 1865, Shirley received an honorary doctorate from Dartmouth College and in 1879, published his treatise "Dartmouth College Causes and the Supreme Court of the United States." Shirley died on May 21, 1887, in Andover, New Hampshire.

Finding Aids