Speaking to graduates at the St. Francis Xavier’s College 1901 commencement, Carr said: “There can be no true success at the expense of character. No wealth or power can compensate for lost ideals” (St. Francis).
Justice William J. Carr was born on October 10, 1862 in Brooklyn. He was educated at the Assumption Church parochial school and went on to earn an A.B. degree at St. Francis Xavier’s College in 1882. He studied law at Villanova College and was admitted to the Bar in 1884.
In 1891, Carr was appointed a clerk of the Supreme Court. Beginning in 1894 he served as United States Commissioner in Brooklyn. He was later named Corporation Counsel for Brooklyn and Assistant Corporation Counsel of New York. In 1907, he was elected as a Justice of the Supreme Court for Kings County. Carr was appointed temporarily to the Appellate Division, Second Department by Gov. Charles E. Hughes in 1910. On January 7, 1911, Carr was officially designated as an Associate Justice by Gov. John Dix.
His memberships in civic and fraternal organizations included the Brooklyn Club, the Riding and Driving Club, the Montauk Club, and the Democratic Association for the Twenty-third Ward.
Carr was married to Julia M. Fryer in 1884 and had three sons and three daughters. He died on August 5, 1917, just six months after the death of his wife.
“Obituary 1 — no Title.” New York Times (1857-1922): 9. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2007). Aug 06 1917. Web. 30 Sep. 2011 http://search.proquest.com/docview/99897788?accountid=8012.
“St. Francis Xavier’s Graduating Exercises.” New York Times (1857-1922): 7. ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times (1851-2007). Jun 25 1901. Web. 30 Sep. 2011 http://search.proquest.com/docview/96108521?accountid=8012.
“William J. Carr.” Biographical information sheets. Appellate Division, Second Department Library, Brooklyn.