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William A. Denning

Previous Illinois Supreme Court Justice


William A. Denning was born c. 1817 in Kentucky. He served in the Illinois militia in the 1830's and left service with the rank of Colonel. He practiced law in Frankfort, Franklin County, Illinois and moved to the town of Benton when the county seat relocated there. He represented Franklin, Pulaski, and Alexander counties in the Illinois General Assembly from 1844 - 1847. The state legislature appointed Denning to serve as state’s attorney in the 3rd Judicial Circuit in 1845. He resigned from the House of Representatives in 1847 to accept an appointment as associate justice of the Illinois Supreme Court. His appointment filled the vacancy on the court created by the resignation of Walter B. Scates. Denning sat on the state supreme court until December 1848. He was elected judge of the 3rd Judicial Circuit on December 1848 and served until January 1854. Judge Denning died on September 4, 1856, in Benton, Illinois.