Theophilus W. Smith (9/28/1784 - 5/6/1846)

Also Known As: Theophilus Washington Smith
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Borrowing activity from 4/18/1804 to 1/16/1806.

Theophilus Washington Smith (September 28, 1784 – May 6, 1846) was an Illinois Supreme Court Justice from 1825 until his resignation on December 26, 1842. He holds the distinction of being the subject of Illinois's first impeachment trial, held in 1833.

Smith was born in New York City and joined the navy before becoming a law student in the offices of Aaron Burr. He was admitted to the New York bar in 1805.

In 1816, Smith migrated to Illinois, settling in Edwardsville. He ran for state Attorney General in 1820, but was unsuccessful. In 1822, Smith was elected to the state Senate, where he served for four years. During this time, he was also the editor of a pro-slavery newspaper and attempted to adopt a new Illinois State Constitution in 1823 that would have legalized slavery in the state.

One of Smith's political rivals was Governor Ninian Edwards, upon whom Smith once drew a pistol. Edwards grabbed the gun away from Smith and broke Smith's jaw, leaving a scar.

Smith was elected as an Associate justice to the Illinois Supreme Court in 1825. In late 1832, he was impeached by the General Assembly on charges of oppressive conduct, corruption, and high misdemeanors. He went on trial in the State Senate in 1833, the only time an impeachment trial has been held in Illinois until the impeachment of Governor Rod Blagojevich in 2009. Smith was acquitted by a vote of 12 for conviction to 10 for acquittal with 4 Senators "excused from voting." A two-thirds conviction vote was required.

When Jean Baptiste Beaubien sued for the property on which Fort Dearborn stood, Smith wrote the Supreme Court's decision in favor of Beaubien's claim, although it was later overturned by the United States Supreme Court.

During the Black Hawk War, Smith served as Quartermaster-General on Governor John Reynolds's staff. and he also served on the first board of commissioners of the Illinois and Michigan Canal.

One of Smith's daughters married Judge Jesse B. Thomas. Another daughter was courted by General James Semple, although Smith's rejection of Semple as a suitable suitor turned Semple, who would later serve on the Supreme Court with Smith, into a lifelong enemy.

Theophilus W. Smith Library Average
Circulation records from 1793-1799 are lost.
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As classified in the 1813 Library Catalog.

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Full Title Author Volume Date Out Date In Rep. Fine Ledger
Transcribed: G TheatreFriedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 54/18/18046/2/1804
Transcribed: "Friedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 16/2/18046/4/1804
Transcribed: "Friedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 26/5/18046/9/1804
Transcribed: "Friedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 36/9/18046/20/1804
Transcribed: Eccentric Biog.6/20/18046/22/1804
Transcribed: " German TheatreFriedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 46/22/18046/30/1804
Transcribed: "Friedrich Ludwig Schröder6/30/18046/30/1804
Transcribed: Life CeliniBenvenuto Cellini; Thomas Nugent7/7/18047/13/1804
Transcribed: German TheatreFriedrich Ludwig SchröderVolume 67/13/18048/9/18042/
Transcribed: Pygges Travels7/17/18047/17/1804
Transcribed: Congreves PlaysWilliam CongreveVolume 28/9/18048/14/1804
Transcribed: Arabian TalesVolume 28/14/18048/20/1804
Transcribed: Arabian TalesVolume 48/14/18048/20/1804
Transcribed: Congreves PlaysWilliam CongreveVolume 18/20/18048/25/1804
Transcribed: Castle RockA. KendallVolume 28/25/18048/28/1804
Transcribed: Castle RockA. KendallVolume 18/25/18048/28/1804
Transcribed: Natural DaughterMary RobinsonVolume 28/28/18049/18/18041/2
Transcribed: Natural DaughterMary RobinsonVolume 18/28/18049/18/18041/2
Transcribed: Amadis di GaulWilliam Stewart Rose; Nicolas de Herberay des Essarts9/18/18049/18/1804
Transcribed: Natural DaughterMary RobinsonVolume 29/18/18049/25/1804
Transcribed: Natural DaughterMary RobinsonVolume 19/18/18049/25/1804
Transcribed: Margaret StaffordMadame de StäelVolume 29/25/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Margaret StaffordMadame de StäelVolume 39/25/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Margaret StaffordMadame de StäelVolume 49/25/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Margaret StaffordMadame de StäelVolume 59/25/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Margaret StaffordMadame de StäelVolume 19/25/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Aurora9/29/180410/6/1804
Transcribed: Odd enough to be sureA. H. J. La FontaineVolume 29/29/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Odd enough to be sureA. H. J. La FontaineVolume 19/29/18049/29/1804
Transcribed: Dryden's PlaysJohn DrydenVolume 310/6/180410/20/1804
Transcribed: PercivalAnne PlumptreVolume 210/6/180410/6/1804
Transcribed: PercivalAnne PlumptreVolume 310/6/180410/6/1804
Transcribed: PercivalAnne PlumptreVolume 410/6/180410/6/1804
Transcribed: PercivalAnne PlumptreVolume 110/6/180410/6/1804
Transcribed: Cecily RabyAgnes MusgraveVolume 210/20/180410/20/1804
Transcribed: Cecily RabyAgnes MusgraveVolume 310/20/180410/20/1804
Transcribed: Cecily RabyAgnes MusgraveVolume 410/20/180410/20/1804
Transcribed: Cecily RabyAgnes MusgraveVolume 110/20/180410/20/1804
Transcribed: Coglan's MemoirsMrs. (Margaret Moncrieffe) Coghlan10/30/180411/14/1804
Transcribed: Little's Poems11/14/180412/28/18042/6
Transcribed: Irvings S. PoetsDavid IrvingVolume 11/19/18052/26/18055/8
Transcribed: Irvings S. PoetsDavid IrvingVolume 21/19/18052/26/18055/8
Transcribed: Life DarwineAnna Seward2/26/18053/13/1805
Transcribed: Hookes R Hist.Nathaniel HookeVolume 15/18/18056/3/1805
Transcribed: Hookes R Hist.Nathaniel HookeVolume 25/18/18056/3/1805
Transcribed: "Nathaniel HookeVolume 16/3/18057/17/18053/10
Transcribed: "Nathaniel HookeVolume 26/3/18057/17/18053/10
Transcribed: "Samuel JohnsonVolume 357/17/18057/23/1805
Transcribed: Johnsons PoetsSamuel JohnsonVolume 557/17/18057/17/1805
Transcribed: Lelands IrelandThomas LelandVolume 17/23/18057/23/1805
Transcribed: Annales de MuseuCharles-Paul Landon12/19/18051/16/1806
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