George W. English

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
George W. English
George W. English cph.3a03600.jpg
George W. English, during his impeachment hearings
Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Illinois
In office
May 3, 1918 – November 4, 1926
Appointed byWoodrow Wilson
Preceded byFrancis Marion Wright
Succeeded byFred Louis Wham
Member of the Illinois House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
George Washington English

(1866-05-09)May 9, 1866
Vienna, Illinois
DiedJuly 19, 1941(1941-07-19) (aged 75)
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Resting placeEvergreen Cemetery
Fort Lauderdale, Florida
EducationIllinois Wesleyan University (LL.B.)

George Washington English (May 9, 1866 – July 19, 1941) was a United States District Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Illinois.

Education and career[edit]

Born on May 9, 1866, near Vienna, Illinois,[1] English received a Bachelor of Laws in 1891 from the now defunct law school at Illinois Wesleyan University.[1] He was chief deputy sheriff of Johnson County, Illinois from 1891 to 1892.[1] He entered private practice in Vienna from 1893 to 1912.[1] He served as city attorney of Vienna.[1] He was a member of the Illinois House of Representatives from 1907 to 1912.[1] He continued private practice in Centralia, Illinois from 1912 to 1914.[1] He was a special income tax attorney for the United States Department of the Treasury from 1914 to 1918.[1]

Federal judicial service[edit]

English was nominated by President Woodrow Wilson on April 22, 1918, to a seat on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Illinois vacated by Judge Francis Marion Wright.[1] He was confirmed by the United States Senate on May 3, 1918, and received his commission the same day.[1] His service terminated on November 4, 1926, due to his resignation, after being impeached by the United States House of Representatives on April 1, 1926.[1] The five articles of English's impeachment were:

  • Tyranny and oppression, and abuse of the powers of his office.
  • Partiality and favoritism, particularly to Charles B. Thomas, his referee in bankruptcy, to whom he was “under great obligation financial and otherwise.”
  • Improper and unlawful conduct in connection with a “bankruptcy ring” operating in his district.
  • Manipulation of bankruptcy and other funds, in conjunction with his referee in bankruptcy, for the pecuniary benefit of the referee, himself and his son.
  • A general course of conduct constituting misbehavior and misdemeanor in office.[2]

The House voted to impeach by a vote of 306 to 60, but the charges were dismissed following English's resignation.[3] He had been accused of abusive treatment of attorneys and litigants appearing before him.[3][4][5]


John T. Rogers of St. Louis Post-Dispatch won the 1927 Pulitzer Prize for Reporting with his coverage of the inquiry leading to English's impeachment.[6]


English died on July 19, 1941 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.[1][7] He was interred in Evergreen Cemetery in Fort Lauderdale.[7]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l George Washington English at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
  2. ^ "Impeachment of Judge George W English Dismissed After Resignation". Constitutional Law Reporter. 17 May 2017. Retrieved 23 September 2019.
  3. ^ a b "Impeachment Proceedings Not Resulting In Trial" (PDF).
  4. ^ "JusticeLearning : Articles". 5 October 2006. Archived from the original on 2006-10-05.
  5. ^ "Wayback Machine" (PDF). 30 September 2007. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2007-09-30.
  6. ^ "Reporter Rogers". Time magazine. 1937-03-15. Retrieved 2008-08-10.
  7. ^ a b George W. English at Find a Grave


Legal offices
Preceded by
Francis Marion Wright
Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Illinois
Succeeded by
Fred Louis Wham