Alfred Franklin

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Alfred Franklin
Alfred Morrison Franklin.jpg
Alfred Franklin, circa 1913
Chief Justice, Arizona Supreme Court
In office
February 14, 1912 – January 1, 1915
In office
January 05, 1917 – November 13, 1918
Preceded by Edward Kent, Jr. (Territorial Supreme Court)
Associate Justice, Arizona Supreme Court
In office
January 1, 1915 – January 05, 1917
Succeeded by John Wilson Ross
Personal details
Born (1871-09-30)September 30, 1871
Kansas City, Missouri
Died Date unknown
Place unknown
Spouse(s) Cora Brill
Profession Attorney; jurist; government official

Alfred Morrison Franklin (September 30, 1871 – after 1948) was an American jurist and politician. He was the first chief justice of the Arizona Supreme Court and served as a member of Arizona's 1910 constitutional convention.


Franklin was born in Kansas City, Missouri on September 30, 1871 to Anne (Johnston) and Benjamin Joseph Franklin.[1] His early education came in the Kansas City public schools.[2] In 1885, Franklin's father was appointed United States consul to Hankow and the younger Franklin was educated by private tutors while the family lived in China.[1][3]

After being admitted to the bar in 1893, Franklin began practicing law in Phoenix, Arizona Territory. He served as Assistant United States Attorney from 1895 to 1897 and during his father's term as Governor of Arizona Territory acted as the senior Franklin's personal secretary.[2] Franklin married Cora Brill in 1901.[4] The marriage produced two children: Kathleen and Josephine.[5]

For Arizona's 1910 constitutional convention, Franklin was elected to represent Maricopa County.[6] He was a member of the Committee on Style, Revision, and Compilation, which determined the final wording of the constitution.[7] His political positions were those of a moderate progressive.[2] During the convention he proposed including provisions supporting women's suffrage and prohibition in the document.[4] The prohibition proposition was voted down 33 to 15.[8] The women's suffrage proposal was likewise defeated.[4]

As statehood approached, Franklin was elected to the Arizona Supreme Court and became the first chief justice.[2] He served a total of three terms on the bench, the first and third as chief justice while Henry D. Ross was chief justice during Franklin's second term.[9] He was defeated in the 1918 primary by Albert C. Baker with a vote of 14,419 to 12,275.[10] The loss was attributed to voter discontent over the Arizona Supreme Court's ruling involving the disputed 1916 election results between Governor George W. P. Hunt and challenger Thomas E. Campbell.[11] Franklin was named Collector of Internal Revenue for the Arizona-New Mexico District on October 24, 1918, and resigned his position on the bench shortly thereafter.[12][13] He held the position until February 7, 1922.[14]

Franklin's wife died from the Spanish Flu on July 4, 1919.[2][5] Franklin had an introverted personality and began withdrawing from society after her death. He eventually left his home and went to live alone in the desert.[2] His last contact with his family occurred in 1938, but he is known to have lived for at least another decade.[2] The date and place of Franklin's death are unknown.[2]


  1. ^ a b Goff 1983, p. 34-5.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h Goff 1983, p. 34.
  3. ^ "Sounds Like Fairy Tale". Arizona Republican. Phoenix, Arizona. October 28, 1911. pp. 1, 7. 
  4. ^ a b c "Alfred Franklin". The Graham Guardian. Safford, Arizona. July 26, 1918. p. 1. 
  5. ^ a b "Mrs. Judge Franklin Dies at St. Joseph's". Tombstone Epitaph. July 6, 1919. 
  6. ^ Wagoner 1970, p. 462.
  7. ^ Wagoner 1970, p. 470.
  8. ^ Wagoner 1970, p. 472.
  9. ^ "Alfred Franklin Now Chief Justice". The Graham Guardian. Safford, Arizona. January 5, 1917. p. 1. 
  10. ^ Goff 1975, p. 140.
  11. ^ "Democrats in Turmoil Over Colter Case". Weekly Journal-Miner. Prescott, Arizona. September 25, 1918. 
  12. ^ "Alfred Franklin Named Collector of U.S. Revenue". El Paso Herald. October 24, 1918. p. 8. 
  13. ^ "Baker Gives Legal Business as His Reason". Bisbee Daily Review. November 2, 1918. p. 6. 
  14. ^ "F. R. Stewart Takes Over Office Today". Tombstone Epitaph. February 12, 1922. p. 7. 
  • Goff, John S. (1975). Arizona Territorial Officials Volume I: The Supreme Court Justices 1863-1912. Cave Creek, Arizona: Black Mountain Press. OCLC 1622668. 
  • —— (1983). "Franklin, Alfred Morrison". Arizona Biographical Dictionary. Cave Creek, AZ: Black Mountain Press. OCLC 10740532. 
  • Wagoner, Jay J. (1970). Arizona Territory 1863-1912: A Political history. Tucson: University of Arizona Press. ISBN 0-8165-0176-9.