Chancellor of New York, 1826-1828
Samuel Jones, Jr. was born on May 26, 1769 in New York City. He studied at King’s College (now Columbia University) but was forced to withdraw due to ill health. In 1790, he graduated from Yale College and commenced his legal studies in his father’s law office, where De Witt Clinton was also a student.
Jones served in the New York State Assembly from 1812 to 1814, and was Recorder for the City of New York in 1823. Appointed Chancellor of New York in 1826, replacing Nathan Sanford, Jones held the office until 1828, when he became Chief Justice of the Superior Court of New York City. He remained Chief Justice of the Superior Court until the reorganization of the judicial system under the Constitution of 1846. Elected a justice of the New York State Supreme Court from the First Judicial District in 1847, he became an ex officio member of the first New York Court of Appeals bench and wrote opinions resolving issues before the Court, including the interesting case of Ruckman v. Pitcher in which a wager on the result of a horse race in Queens county was held unlawful, notwithstanding the statutes authorizing and regulating the racing of horses in that county.
Samuel Jones, Jr. died on August 9, 1853 in Cold Spring Harbor, New York.