Howard L. Bickley

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

Howard Lee Bickley (May 3, 1871 – March 4, 1947) was an American lawyer and judge. Originally from Missouri, he relocated to New Mexico and became Chief Justice of the New Mexico Supreme Court.

Bickley was born in Mexico, Missouri.[1] He graduated from the University of Missouri School of Law in 1895, and then returned to Mexico to practice law.[1][2] He was elected prosecuting attorney for Audrain County on the Democratic ticket.[1] He moved to Raton, New Mexico in 1904, and practiced law there until he became a judge.[2] He was the city attorney for Raton for many years.

He was elected to the New Mexico Supreme Court as a Democrat, and began his service January 1, 1925.[3] He was re-elected in 1932 and 1940.[1] He served as Chief Justice three times during his tenure, the last time from January 1, 1947 until his death.[4] He administered the oath of office to four governors.[5]

Bickley died of a sudden heart attack in his home in Santa Fe the night of March 4, 1947.[2] A freemason, his funeral services were conducted on March 6 at the Scottish Rite Cathedral in Santa Fe.[6] State offices were closed the same day for an hour and a half in his memory.[6] He was buried in Fairmont Cemetery in Raton, next to his wife.[2][6]

He married Ruth K. Phillips in 1897 in Mexico, Missouri; Ruth died in 1910 and he did not remarry.[1] They had one daughter, Frances.


  1. ^ a b c d e Report of Proceedings of the Annual Meeting of the State Bar of New Mexico, State Bar of New Mexico, 1947, pp. 18–21 .
  2. ^ a b c d "Chief Justice H. L. Bickley Dies", Albuquerque Journal: 3, March 6, 1947 .
  3. ^ Supreme Court Justices of the State of New Mexico Since Statehood (PDF), New Mexico Supreme Court, April 7, 2010, p. 2, retrieved October 2, 1010  Check date values in: |access-date= (help).
  4. ^ "Chief Justice Robe Goes to Judge Bickley", Albuquerque Journal: 3, January 1, 1947 .
  5. ^ "Judge Succumbs", Reno Evening Gazette: 1, March 5, 1947 .
  6. ^ a b c "Masonic Rites Held for Bickley", Albuquerque Journal: 1, March 7, 1947 .