Justices of the Florida Supreme Court

Supreme Court of Florida
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Justice Milton Harvey Mabry

Served 1891 – 1894, 1897 - 1903 as Justice and 1895 – 1897 as Chief Justice
b. Pickens County, Alabama – June 17, 1851 d. March 3, 1919 – Tampa, Florida

The son of an itinerant merchant, Milton Mabry attended a number of schools, finally arriving at the University of Mississippi at Oxford.  After two years there, he transferred to Cumberland University in Tennessee, where he entered the law department, graduating in 1872.  He settled in Tupelo, Mississippi, where he began a law practice and participated in Democratic Party politics.  His friend and fellow attorney William Hocker (later a Florida Supreme Court justice) moved to Florida in 1874 and persuaded Mabry to do the same in 1879.  Mabry was elected state representative in 1882, and lieutenant governor of Florida in 1885. The 1885 constitution eliminated the post at the end of his term, and, in 1890, Mabry was elected to the Florida Supreme Court.  Colleagues remembered the justice as being particularly concerned with preserving the writ of habeus corpus “free from cost, from formalities in obtaining it, and from technicalities in the procedure.”  By 1903, he decided that he needed to return to private practice to earn enough money for a comfortable retirement.  Mabry moved to Tampa, briefly, until his former colleagues on the court persuaded him, in 1905, to return to Tallahassee as Supreme Court clerk.  He remained in this position until he retired in 1915 and again moved to Tampa, where he died four years later. 

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