Henry D. Lapaugh was born around 1826 and although little is known of his personal life, he was admitted to practice law in New York. Contemporary registers of attorneys indicate that he was in partnership with F. Gustav Fincke, with offices at 35 Wall Street, New York, between 1859 and 1866.
In 1854, Lapaugh represented Oliver Lee, who was accused of causing the death of William Henry Harrison during the Williamsburg Election Riot. From the law reports, it appears that Lapaugh had an extensive national and international practice. Lapaugh represented the Lemmons and the State of Virginia in the Lemmon Slave Case of the 1850s, and was counsel to the Prussian government and the King of Saxony in 1865, arguing that the United States did not have jurisdiction over a foreign counsel. He represented the Swiss Confederation in 1869 in an extradition case.
He appears to have been active in politics, and in December 1, 1865, was described as a “stirring” speaker at an outdoor rally held in support of Marshall O. Roberts and Murray Hoffman. He was president of the Fifteenth Assembly District Republican Association in 1870, 1871 and 1872, and was a delegate from New York to the Republican National Convention in 1872.
This information was drawn from law reports, registers of attorneys, etc.