John D. Caton

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John Dean Caton (March 19, 1812 – July 30, 1895) was an associate justice and chief justice of the Illinois Supreme Court. In his book, Early Bench and Bar of Illinois[1] inspired by an 1893 speech given to the Illinois Bar Association, Judge Caton claims to have tried the first jury case in a court of record in Cook County, Illinois. He recounts his experiences riding the circuit in the early days of Illinois statehood, and his later appointment to the Illinois Supreme Court, a period of some sixty years. He relates a number of humorous andecdotes about his days as a circuit rider.

Abraham Lincoln was an attorney in 214 cases in the Illinois Supreme Court, in which Caton was a justice.[2]


  1. ^ Caton, John Dean (1893). Early Bench and Bar of Illinois. Chicago: Chicago Legal News Company. p. 215. 
  2. ^ "Caton, John D". Retrieved 2012-09-07.