The Twentieth Century Biographical Dictionary of Notable Americans: Volume I
BEARDSLEY, Samuel, jurist, was born in Hoosic, N.Y., Feb. 9, 1790; brother of Levi Beardsley, jurist. After acquiring an academic education he studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1815, and practised for a time at Rome, Oneida county, of which he was appointed district-attorney. In 1822 he was elected to the state senate, resigning his seat in that body to accept the office of first judge of Oneida county. From 1828 to 1830 he was U. S, attorney for northern New York, receiving his appointment from President Jackson. In 1830 he was elected as a Democratic representative to the 22d Congress, and re-elected to the 23d and 24th congresses, serving from December, 1831, to July, 1836, when he was appointed attorney-general to the state of New York. He was elected a representative to the 28th Congress in 1842, but served less than a year, resigning his seat February, 1844, to become associate justice of the supreme court of the state of New York. From this position he rose to that of chief justice in 1847, succeeding Judge Bronson. He was an able jurist and statesman and while in Congress made several strong and eloquent speeches. He received the degree of LL.D, from Hamilton college in 1849. The remainder of his life was passed in Utica, where, though declining public offices, he made himself conspicuous in all public movements, social or political. He was a delegate to the national Democratic convention which met in Cincinnati in 1856, and was the controlling factor in the nomination of James Buchanan. He died in Utica. N.Y., May 6, 1860.