Historical Justices


Town Justice of the Peace Project                              

The Canandaigua Town Board has given me both permission and encouragement to devote a wall in our Courtroom for the display of the Town justices who have served over the last 200 years. This wall of photos and names would not only honor our judges but also speak to our pride in our historical past.

If you know of any of our past judges, we would appreciate a photo of them. The Town will process the photo, frame it, and place a bronze plate with name and years of service. If you know of any additional information or anecdotes on any of the judges, please advise so we can include it in our historical records.

I am also posting a copy of the terms of those who served. If you can add or make corrections to our information, please inform us.

As we move forward as the Town of Canandaigua in the 21st Century, we wish to honor those who brought us to this moment of greatness. Thank you, in advance, for your help and prompt response.              

Ray Henry, Town Historian
April 9, 2014
(585) 944-1506


Unless otherwise noted, dates are inclusive.

Name Start End Notes
Jabez H. Metcalf Pre 1846 1847 Village President – 1844
Lyman Cooley Pre 1846 1847  
Solomon C. White  Pre 1846 1848  
Orson Benjamin 1847  1854  
Zebina Lucas Pre 1846 1853 Town Supervisor – 1853-1854
Ralph L. Huntley 1854 1856  
Hiram Metcalf 1848 1858 Village Clerk – 1847-1852, 1854
Cornelius Younglove 1855 1859 Village Clerk – 1855-1857, 1860-1864
Seymour V. R. Johnson 1849 1857  
Asahel H. Brown 1857 1863  
Philander E. Hall 1862 1866  
Alexander H. Howell 1859 1867 Village President – 1852, 1855
J. Hinman Smith 1865 1871  
Lester P. Thompson 1870 1874  
James S. Hickox 1864 1872  
  1874 1874 Town Supervisor     1875
J. Milton Munson 1860 1863  
  1872 1876  
Avery Hemenway 1865 1879  
Horatio B. Brace 1870 1879  
C. E. Crandall 1879 1881  
Isaac R. Parcell 1854 1855  
  1857 1871  
  1878 1883  
Julian A. Van Wie 1881 1884  
Hiram Metcalf 1873 1885  
Delos Doolittle 1876 1887  
John B. Hall 1885 1888  
Samuel H. Torry 1888 1888  
Royal  R. Scott 1886 1889  
John B. Hall 1890 1893  
J. Milton Munson 1889 1896  
Frank  A. Christian 1894 1897  
John H. Hicks 1898 1903  
John S. Coe 1882 1905  
Clair L. Morey 1906 1909  
George A. Nicholson 1904 1909  
Henry W. Hamlin 1910 1912  
T. C. Parkhurst 1910 1913  
Leon W. Van Dusen 1912 1913  
Sybley E. Nott 1897 1915  
Edward H. Frary 1888 1915  
James P McJannett 1914 1915  
Albertus L. Padelford 1916 1917 Death of James P. McJannett
Peter Haak 1918 1920 Became  Highway Supt.
George B. Hickox 1921    
Austin C. Huntley 1913 1923  
Wilfred C. Riker 1917 1929 Death of Albertus L. Padelford
Walter Haskell 1923 1937  
Lorenzo H. Purdy 1922 1949  
P.W. Case 1924 1949  
L. D. McPherson 1930 1951  
Morton R. Jones 1938 1955 1955 elected councilman
Claire B. Dryer 1950 1969  
Warren E. Hook 1950 1978  
James E. Repard 1952 1955 1955 elected councilman
Irwin M. Hicks 1970 1975 Resigned
Oren H. Sangster 1975 1982 Resigned
Richard O’Brien 1982 1998  
Joseph Pesce 1975 1984 Resigned
David Prull 1985    
Walter Jones 1999   Death of Richard O’Brien


Note: The minutes of the Town Board were the source for these records of years of service where available in the Town Hall starting in 1846.  From said minutes it is apparent that from 1846 until 1862, only an annual meeting was held that had minutes recorded, and also reported election results. That meeting was on the first Tuesday of April. The agenda included normal buisiness items, and then at some time  (not recorded) the meeting was adjourned and polls for elected officials opened. At the end of the afternoon, gennerally at dark, the polls were closed and the meeting was resumed with a report of the canvassing of polls according to George S. Conover’s “Hsitory of Ontario County”, 1893, p204:

“The first town meeeting (of which there is any record) was held on the first Tuesday of Apri, 1791, and was “opened and superintended” by Israel Chapin. Esquire.  At the first town meeting just referred to, the following town officers were elected: Supervisor, Israel Chapin; Town Clerk, James D. Fish; assessors, John Call, Enos Boughton, Seth Reed, Nathan Comstock, James Austin, Arnold Potter, and Nathanial Norton; collectors, Phineas Bates and John Codding; overseers of the poor, Israel Cahpin and Nathanial Gorham; commissioners of highways . . . . . .”  No Justices were mentioned.

Up until 1956 the Town Justices served on the Town Board, so the Town Board consisted of the Town Supervisor, anywhere from 2 to 6 Town Justices, and the Town Clerk. In November 1955, Town Justices Dryer and Repard ran for and were elected Councilmen. Thence until ca. 1977/1978, Board consisted of Town Supervisor, 2 Town Justices, 2 Councilmen, and the Town Clerk. In 1977/1978, it was deemed that Justices could not hold Deputy Supervisor/or Councilman position? This is to be verified.


We would like to receive pictures of any of these Justices - Ray Henry 585-944-1506

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