Image of Parks, Samuel C.

Parks, Samuel C.

b. 1820, in Middlebury, Vermont; d. 1917. Parks moved to Springfield, Illinois, in 1840 to practice law. He then moved to Mt. Pulaski, Illinois, and often came into association with Abraham Lincoln in the trial of cases in Logan County. In 1855, Parks was elected to serve in the state legislature. He attended both the 1856 and 1860 Republican National Conventions and worked to secure Lincoln’s nomination to the presidency by canvassing his native state of Vermont. As president, Lincoln appointed Parks as an associate justice of the Supreme Court of Idaho in 1862. Parks was a delegate to the 1870 Illinois constitutional convention. In 1878, President Hayes appointed Parks as a justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court, and he held that position until 1882, when President Arthur transferred him to the Wyoming Supreme Court.
David Herbert Donald, Lincoln (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995), 248; John J. Duff, A. Lincoln: Prairie Lawyer (New York: Bramhall House, 1960), 205-06; John Palmer, ed., The Bench and Bar of Illinois: Historical and Reminiscent (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Co., 1899), 2:1006; Samuel C. Parks, The Great Trial of the Nineteenth Century (Kansas City: Hudson-Kimberly Company, 1900), 5; Douglas L. Wilson and Rodney O. Davis, ed., Herndon’s Informants: Letters, Interviews, and Statements about Abraham Lincoln (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1998), 766; Albert A. Woldman, Lawyer Lincoln (Boston and New York: Houghton Mifflin Company, 1936), 101, 269. Illustration courtesy of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library, Springfield, IL.