Justice William F. Hagarty was born in 1877 in Dayton, Ohio and moved to Brooklyn at the age of 11. He earned his law degree from New York Law School and began working as an attorney in Brooklyn.
Hagarty was elected to the Supreme Court in 1922 and re-elected at the end of his term in 1936. In 1927, he was designated to the Appellate Division, Second Department by Gov. Alfred E. Smith. In 1938, Justice Hagarty spoke out against a proposal to remove personal automobile injury cases from the jurisdiction of the courts and instead handle them like workmen’s compensation cases. He retired in 1947.
Justice Hagarty was chairman of the Japanese American Resettlement Committee of the Brooklyn Council of Social Planning, and served on the Holy Family Hospital board of managers and as president of the Crescent Athletic Club.
He married Mary E. McGrath in 1942. He died in Long Island on January 30, 1950 at the age of 72.
“Defends Court Trial of Auto Injury Suits.” New York Times (1923-Current file): 4. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2007). Apr 24 1938. Web. 6 Jan. 2012.
“Judge William F. Hagarty.” Calisphere. University of California. Web. 06 Jan. 2012. http://www.oac.cdlib.org/ark:/13030/ft509nb2jz/.
“Smith Designates Justice Hagarty.” New York Times (1923-Current file): 10. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2007). Feb 08 1927. Web. 29 Dec. 2011.
“William F. Hagarty, Retired Justice, 72.” New York Times (1923-Current file): 20. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2007). Jan 31 1950. Web. 29 Dec. 2011.