RALPH WALDO EMERSON DONGES was born in Donaldson, Schuylkill County PA to Dr. John Washington Donges and his wife Rose Marguerite Renaud Donges on May 5, 1868. His father was a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania who practiced medicine in Pennsylvania before coming to Camden NJ. His mother was born in France. Ralph Donges was the second of five children, coming after Clarence and before Miriam, Raymond, and Evelyn Donges. Dr. John W. Donges moved his family to 1801 Broadway in Camden in 1875. The family remained there until the mid 1890s, when they lived at 525 Broadway. By 1920 Ralph W.E. Donges and his parents had moved to 805 Cooper Street.
After seeing John W. Wescott try a case at the Camden County Court House, Ralph Donges prevailed upon his father to allow him to study law. After studying under Wescott, who went on to a long and distinguished career as a judge in Camden, Ralph Donges went into the practice of law, and practiced alongside older brother Raymond R. Donges, who had passed the bar in 1895 after studying with Judge Howard Carrow.
Ralph W.E. Donges, like his father, also became involved in politics and community affairs. On September 23, 1904 hew was named secretary of the First Congressional District branch of the Democrats. He had served as a legal aide to Woodrow Wilson prior to his election as president. Ralph W.E. Donges was an active member of several fraternal and professional organizations, especially Camden Lodge 111, Loyal Order of Moose. He was already quite prominent in the Moose organization when he met the Vice-President Thomas Marshall on, Sunday, July 27, 1913. The purpose of the meeting was to arrange for Marshall to speak at the dedication of a home for fatherless children being started by the Loyal Order of Moose. Ralph Waldo Emerson Donges was presiding that year as Supreme Dictator. (The title of the fraternity's presiding officer was not changed to Supreme Governor until 1940.)
“I detest orphanages,” Marshall had irritably responded to Donges in initially trying to get out of the assignment. “When I was Governor of Indiana I was forced in the course of duty to visit a number of orphanages. I thought they were terrible places, and I won’t help you lay the cornerstone for another one.”
Donges, then 38 and a lawyer from Camden, NJ, reassured the Vice President. “It will never be that kind of orphanage,” he said, referring to the dreary urban warehouses of abandoned children then common in the U.S.; places that got their income via donations from couples who would come to view children before selecting one to adopt. That’s not at all what the Moose were planning, Donges insisted: “It will be a home and school for the children of our deceased members.”
The orphanage the Moose opened up in 1913 is the Mooseheart Child City and School, a residential childcare facility owned and operated by Moose International. Located on a 1,200-acre campus 38 miles west of Chicago, the Child City is a home for children and teens, from infancy through high school.
Ralph Donges was still practicing law in Camden when the United States entered World War I. Along with brother-in-law Dr. Grant Elmer Kirk, he served on the Camden City Draft Board. Ralph Donges also was a member of the Public Safety Committee before being called to service in May of 1918 in the United States Army during the war, rising to the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
After the war Ralph Donges served as a judge in the New Jersey legal system, first as a circuit judge from 1920 to 1930, then as an associate justice of New Jersey state supreme court for 18 years, from 1930 to 1948, and finally as a superior court judge from 1948 through 1951. He also was involved in banking, and was the first president of the South Camden Trust when it opened for business at Broadway & Ferry Avenue on April 2, 1921.
Ralph W.E. Donges was a member of the American Bar Association, the Freemasons, the Elks; and Moose. During the later years of his life he made his home in Oaklyn NJ. Ralph W.E. Donges passed away in September of 1974. He was entombed in the family mausoleum at Harleigh Cemetery, Camden, NJ.
After his death in September of 1974, the Honorable Ralph W.E. Donges Memorial Scholarship Award, an annual scholarship of $1,000 to be given an evening student at any of the following law schools: Rutgers-Camden, Rutgers-Newark, Seton Hall, Penn, Temple, Villanova, or Widener, was established. Applicants must demonstrate a bona fide intention to practice law in Camden County. Applicants also should demonstrate genuine financial need as well as scholastic achievement.
Dr. John W. Donges
Click on Images to Enlarge
|Philadelphia Inquirer - January 19, 1916|
M.K. Lee Post 5, G.A.R. - Ralph
John W. Bodine - George Barrett
August 2, 2003
Click on image to Enlarge
Designed by architect Joseph Hettel.
|Camden Courier-Post - January 25, 1928|
CAMDEN FAMILY WINS $2500 FROM TAXI FIRM
suit instituted by a Camden family against the Yellow Cab Company for
$65,000 growing out of a collision between an automobile in which they
were riding and one of the concern’s cabs was settled out of court
today for $2,500.
The suit, brought by Thomas W. Jackson, 50 years old; his wife, Sarah E., and daughter, Hannah J., 14 years old, of 1018 Cooper street, was begun yesterday in Circuit Court before Judge Ralph W. E. Donges and a jury.
was announced by Albert S.
Woodruff, attorney for the family, and T. Harry Rowland, counsel for
the cab company.
Jacksons testified they were passengers in a machine that collided with
a taxicab at Sixth and Clinton
Streets November 15, 1926. They
charged that the cab was speeding.
|Camden Courier-Post - January 31, 1931|
VICTIM SEEKS $135,000 DAMAGES
Damages aggregating $135,000 are asked of a prominent Philadelphia sportsman in suits being heard by Judge Donges and a jury in Camden Circuit Court today.
plaintiffs, who are represented by attorney Albert S.
Charles Klopp, 1152 Sycamore
Street, brother of Henry Klopp, who died as a
result of an accident last spring; Miss Helen Groczyk, 1079 Van Hook
Street, who was injured in the same crash, and her father Josef Groczyk.
Klopp asks $50,000 for compensation for his brother’s death; Miss
Groczyk seeks $75,000 for her injuries and her father wants $10,000 for
medical expenses incurred by his daughter’s hurt.
suits were brought against William Poultney Smith, of Cynwyd PA, and are a
result of an accident early on the morning of May 11, 1927 on Black Horse
Pike at Bellmawr.
to Miss Groczyk, who went on the witness stand yesterday afternoon, she
went for an automobile ride with Henry Klopp, Joseph
Klosterman, and Mrs.
Esther Rieder. They had been to Chews Landing and were returning to
Camden, she said, when she became ill in the smoke-filled sedan. She left
the car, aided by Klopp, and was standing directly behind when another
machine, driven by Smith, crashed into them, crushing them against their
car. The plaintiffs contend that Smith had been playing golf at Pine
Valley, had afterwards been drinking, and was in a stupor while driving
his machine, thus causing the accident. Klopp was taken to the Went Jersey
Homeopathic Hospital, where a leg was amputated, and where he died seven
The girl, who is now 18 years old, had both legs broken and suffered other injuries. She appeared in court with a brace on her right leg and limped to the stand. She testified that their car was fully lighted when they stopped on the road.
defense will contend that the Klopp car had no lights, and will deny all
responsibility for the tragedy.
was a World War veteran, his brother testified and had been the only
support for his mother, Mrs. Julia Klopp, his brother and a sister, Ida..
|Camden Courier-Post - January 31, 1928|
BEGINS IN ALIENATION SUIT
Hearing in the suit of a city fireman demanding from a Camden manufacturer $200,000, alleging alienation or his wife’s affections and defamation of his character was scheduled to start before Judge Ralph W. Donges and a jury in Camden Circuit Court late this afternoon.
Samuel Oshushek, 30 years old,
1639 Pulaski Street, asks $150,000 for the loss of his wife’s love,
which he says was stolen by Peter Malinowski, 47 years old, of Drexel Hill
PA, proprietor of a concrete block factory at Mt. Ephraim Avenue and
Decatur Street, Camden. The fireman also seeks $50,000 for reflections
alleged to have been made against his name and character by Malinowski.
to Oshushek’s affidavit, his wife, Clara, 27 years old, also is living
in Drexel Hill. He contends that Malinowski and Mrs. Oshushek became
intimate in June 1926, and that the manufacturer finally induced Mrs.
Oshushek to leave her husband,
further alleges that before his wife’s purported elopement, she received
letters from the manufacturer in which the latter attacked the character
of the fireman.
Police court records show that the wives of the two
men engaged in a quarrel on March 30, 1927 and came to blows. When a date
for hearing was set, Mrs. Malinowski did not appear in court. She
afterward the told police that her husband had beat her so severely that
she could not appear.
February 4, 1928
February 21, 1928
Ralph W.E. Donges
W.E. Donges' memorial to Judge John W. Wescott
My admiration for Judge Wescott developed early. I admired my own father greatly, and he, I discovered, regarded the militant young Judge not only as a friend, but as a heroic character.
I went into the old Camden County Court House one day- I heard my future preceptor try a case. The picture is with me now, of the skilled, aggressive advocate, and the brilliant, splendidly poised trial judge, the late Charles Grant Garrison, who sat in the trial of cases, where I have the privilege of sitting now. From then on my ambition remained fixed. What earnest boy has not dreamed a future? I wanted to become a lawyer, a trial lawyer, a great trial lawyer if possible- and I wanted to learn the law under Judge Wescott. I think my father hoped that I would follow him in the practice of medicine- in which he was rendering a great service to the community- but when he realized the earnestness of my wish to study law, he did not try to dissuade me, but took me to the Judge’s office, and shortly thereafter my legal training began. Not, however, at the first interview. It was not enough that his good friend had a son who wanted to become a lawyer. I had to convince one, then the other, that it was no passing whim on my part. These were my first two important arguments. To me they were vital, and, having won the first, I struggled the harder to win the next. When Judge Wescott saw I that was in earnest and not to be discouraged by his warnings of the difficulties and dangers of a lawyer’s life, he, with evident reluctance, consented to try me out for a time. He told me he hesitated to take students because he had neither time nor inclination for their instruction. Nevertheless, that was a happy day for me, not only because it meant the beginning of my legal training, but because I knew that it meant an exceptionally good training. By this I do not mean that my preceptor was, in the usual sense, an exceptionally good teacher. Indeed, he had but little knack in giving personal instruction. He had neither the interest in legal technicalities nor the requisite patience for teaching by rote. But he was an inspiring example. To be with him in the office and the courtroom was a constant stimulus to exertion and the acquirement of skill in every branch of the law. The young men he took as students, developed in nearly every instance into capable lawyers. The late Judge Vroom, Francis D. Weaver, who later became his partner, Howard L. Miller, and the Judge’s own three sons, are some of these students, who either preceded or followed my apprenticeship.
Judge Wescott was interested primarily in the character of his students. He looked first, I think, for honesty, next for courage, lastly for skill and learning. All are prime essentials, but I place them in the order in which he held them, and in which he exemplified them. Great as were his skill and learning, they rested on the greater foundation of courage; and that, in turn, rested on his essential honesty of character, which sprang from the love in his heart.
He was a lover of all mankind and his fighting spirit was aroused whenever he believed human right was invaded. To him the financial benefit of winning a case, either to the client or to himself was not to be considered, in comparison with the vindication of a right. If he sometimes appeared adamantine or intolerant, it was only because he believed an injustice or an untruth was being perpetrated. He had no disposition to compromise or temporize with either.
By nature, then, a kindly, lovable soul, as I have good reason to know, he would become hard and merciless in his condemnation of sham, hypocrisy, deceit and attempted injustice. In the event of what he conceived to be an oppression, by whomsoever attempted, he flung into the conflict with all of his tremendous powers. I wish space permitted a narration of some instances of the exhibition of his courage, skill, and resourcefulness. None, who has heard him, can forget his matchless elegance, his compelling reasoning, his quiet commanding presence, as he sought to vindicate what he believed in the moment to be right.
Judge Wescott was essentially an advocate, but such was his belief in the majesty of the law for the honest settlement of differences between suitors, that I believe he never took pleasure in the winning of any case, unless he believed that substantial justice had been done between the parties.
His life is an inspiration to those following him, an exemplification, as above stated, of honesty, courage, learning, and skill. Fidelity to duty, as he saw that duty, was the cardinal principle that controlled his activities as an advocate- “With firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right.”
Judge Wescott was a great lawyer, a brilliant and courageous advocate, a warm hearted, sympathetic friend, a thorough-going American, to whom Shakespeare’s words, as quoted by Dean Minturm at the end of his foregoing appreciation of our mutual friend and mentor, most aptly apply.
‘Take him for all in all, We shall not look upon his like again”
|Camden Courier-Post - June 1, 1933|
JURY DUTY IMPORTANCE STRESSED BY DONGES
"The greatest civic duty an upright, patriotic citizen can render his community is to serve on a jury when called and to be impartial in reaching a verdict in whatever case is brought before him."
Ralph W. E. Donges made that
statement yesterday in, instructing the 45 members of the second panel of
the petit jury in their duties. Justice Donges
substituted for Justice Frank
T. Lloyd, who regularly talks to each new jury panel, but who is in
Virginia recuperating from an illness.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 2, 1933|
TAKES OATH AS CIRCUIT JUDGE
Holly, June l.-V.
Palmer, law partner of State Senator Clifford R. Powell, today took the
oath as a judge of the New Jersey Circuit Court.
was sworn In by Supreme Court Justice Ralph W. E. Donges before some 200
persons assembled in the old Burlington county Court House. Among those
present, in addition to Powell, were Prosecutor Howard A. Eastwood; Judge
Charles A. Rigg, of Common Pleas and County Probation Officer Frank
Hendrickson, all of whom made brief speeches.
welcomed Palmer to the bench in behalf of the county bar association,
declaring that Burlington County has lost an attorney who "has been
our ideal for years."
know he has the ability and are proud that he has been elevated to this
honor," said the prosecutor.
Donges declared he has known Palmer for years as an able lawyer.
said he would exercise his best powers to carry out the high trust of his
|Camden Courier-Post - June 8, 1933|
NIGHT SET FOR FINE EXECUTION
Twice reprieved, Louis Fine, convicted trunk slayer, is to die next Monday night In the electric chair at State's Prison in Trenton.
Fine's execution was set by Governor Moore for the week of June 11 and yesterday Col. Edward B. Stone, principal keeper at State's Prison, selected Monday at 9 p.m,. as the time for the electrocution.
Convicted by a jury in an Atlantic County Criminal Court June 9, 1932, of the murder of Mrs. Mattie Schaaf, 60, Atlantic City housekeeper with whom he lived, Fine and his attorneys have exerted. every effort to keep him from the electric chair.
Both the Court of Errors' and Appeals and the Board of Pardons refused to commute the sentence to life imprisonment or grant the convicted man a new trial.
On application of John Rauffenbart and Edward B. Feinberg, Atlantic City attorneys. Governor Moore granted a reprieve from execution scheduled for April 28 last so that a final test of Fine's mentality could be made by alienists.
At a hearing before Supreme Court Justice Ralph W. E. Donges in Mays Landing, Fine was declared sane and a new execution date set.
The coming electrocution will set a precedent as far as Atlantic county is concerned for Fine will be the first convicted murderer from that county to expiate his crime in the chair.
The body of Mrs. Schaaf, which had been shipped from Atlantic City in a double trunk, was found in a Philadelphia rooming house March 7, 1932. Fine was later arrested in Atlantic City at the home of Mrs. Schaaf and he admitted having shipped the trunk for another man but did not know its contents.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 12, 1933|
Old Centreville Families
WHEN a larger community annexes an adjoining district the newer area is generally regarded, for a time at least, as a step-child. Older residents of East Camden will bear out that truism when they recall how difficult it was to obtain improvements. Years before, Newton Township which became part of Camden, had had the same experience. Under such circumstances, it requires tireless energy on the part of leading men to get what their district needs. Demands often go unheeded unless the community is fortunate in having those of spirit who insist on street improvements, water extension, lighting facilities and schools. That was more in evidence half a century ago than now, of course, for Camden itself was little more than a large village.
Down in Centreville there were men who looked after the interests of their constituents, who slowly but surely obtained, improvements and who insisted on being recognized by the powers that be. No one may think of old Centreville without thought of Dr. John W. Donges, whose value to not only that section but Camden at large, has been expatiated upon in these annals. He was not only a leading physician, with a practice extending into Camden, but a leader in many civic movements, and any article on that era would be incomplete without allusion again to the doctor whose services as a real family physician are part of the traditions of many old families.
Came Here In 1872
He came here in 1872 from Schuylkill County, Pennsylvania, when his health was affected by overwork through loyalty to his patients. He bought the drugstore at Ferry Avenue and Broadway, remaining there for many years. It was there Supreme Court Justice Ralph W. E. Donges spent his boyhood.
There, too, Dr. Clarence B. Donges and Attorney Raymond Donges were boys. Grant E. Kirk, clerk in his store, later becoming a physician and for several years a member of council and at one time being prominently boomed for mayor, married their sister. Dr. Donges was elected to council in 1878 on the Democratic ticket, itself an evidence of the high regard in which he was held, for the Eighth Ward generally was rockribbed Republican. Until the early part of this century he resided in his old place, but later went to Broadway and Clinton Streets. In later years, after he had retired, he was city assessor, "just to keep busy." He died a few years ago, well in his 80s, mourned by a great host of Camdenites.
There was another widely known Centreville family of the old days, that of Samuel Mills, who had his own abattoir at Broadway and Jackson Street, where city-dressed meats were provided before the days of car refrigeration brought supplies from the great packing places in Chicago. His son, Charlie, was long a member of the Board of Education, while another, William, was a city councilman. Edward Milis, another son, was excise commissioner 35 years ago in the days when there was plenty of trouble with Sunday sellers.
Cornelius Schepperkotter was a factor in politics down that way, too, having a grocery store on Ferry Avenue at Ninth, later moving to the southwest corner when the Charles Sumner School was built. That school was torn down two years ago for the recreation center. Schepperkotter was a member of the old Board of Public Instruction in the late 90's, named by Mayor Cooper B. Hatch. In later years and until his death, he was superintendent of Evergreen Cemetery. He was father of Mrs. Frank S. Albright, wife of City Clerk Albright.
Shortly after the New York shipyard was opened, there moved to the "Hill" Frank D. L. Covely, who became a joiner and for years was foreman of the joiner shop. He was widely known as a secret society man and also as an effective campaign speaker for the G. O. P. He was a member of the Board of Education.
He sought to go to council, but that was at the time Kirk was a power in the ward. Covely laughingly used to tell of a meeting all set for him from which all save the colored folk were drawn away through strategy of his party opponents. But for ten years he was a member of the Board of Recreation Commissioners.
That movement owed much to his work. Nor did he forget his colored friends, for he had a playground established for them at Ferry Avenue and Phillips Street and the large one [Staley Park- PMC] at Seventh and Jefferson streets. Long afterward that was named for another city official, but Covely's friends said it should have been for him, as a monument to his services for the boys and girls of Centreville. He died a few years ago at Bellmawr in his 70s, after a hectic experience as a chicken raiser at Port Norris.
There, too, was William Dorrell, superjntendent of the old "Narrow Guage" who was one of the leading spirits in the paving of Broadway, nearly 60 years ago the big issue of that section. He lived in a house along the railroad still standing, as the hospital and dispensary of the shipyard.
Mention has been made of the Ferrises, the Helmbolds, the Yeagers, of Squire James D. Chester and Squire F. Joseph Rouh. There was also William O. Thompson, the leading contractor down that way for many years and Theodore Tiedeken, who established the wagon works on Van Hook Street, Martin Ewe, who had the hotel at Broadway and Emerald, and down the street a bit James Croker, who operated Tammany Hall. Forty years ago there was one of the best young athletes of the city, Thomas Nicholas, now retired Camden fire chief. He was down in old No. 3 with Bill Rose, long a fire captain, Bill Miller, Al James, Sam Lodge, Gus Dold and Jim Ware.
Many of these old timers have passed on, but others are still in the flesh but scattered to all parts of the city but it may be said the survivors look back on the days that were down there in Centreville with an interest that does not dim with the passing years.
|Camden Courier-Post - June 12, 1933|
|FINE DIES TONIGHT IN ELECTRIC CHAIR FOR KILLING WOMAN
Real Estate Broker, 51, Has Aged 25 Years Since Arrest
REPRIEVE EFFORTS FAIL
Trenton, June 10 - Louis B. Fine, 51, but aged considerably beyond his years, is to forfeit his life tomorrow night. He is scheduled to die in the electric chair, as penalty for the murder of Mrs. Mattie Schaaf, his landlady, of Atlantic City, whose body was found in a trunk shipped to a Philadelphia rooming house in March, 1932.
Fine was scheduled for execution several months ago, but reprieved temporarily when an effort was made to declare him insane. The attempt failed and Supreme Court Justice Ralph W. E. Donges re-sentenced him to death. Court attaches who saw Fine during the sanity hearing at Mays Landing said they could hardly recognize him. The man, they declared, seemed 25 years older than when he was captured.
An organization of which Fine is a member is said to be seeking a reprieve and possible commutation of sentence. Little hope is held, however, and Col. Edward B. Stone, warden at the state prison here, has completed arrangements for the execution..
Camden Courier-Post - February 1, 1938
PICKS PORTER TO SUCCEED LLOYD
Trenton, January 31- Governor Moore today nominated Circuit Court Judge Newton H. Porter, now sitting in Essex: county, to the state Supreme Court seat left vacant by the retirement of Justice Frank T. Lloyd, of Merchantville. The nomination is now before the Senate for confirmation.
The naming of Porter, a Republican, was a distinct surprise. Circuit Judge V. Claude Palmer, of Burlington county and also a Republican, was believed to have had the inside track for the court vacancy.
J. Warren Leyden, of Hackensack, was nominated as circuit judge to succeed Judge Porter.
The nomination of Porter, marks the fourth time he has been, appointed to the bench by a Democratic Governor and the third, time by Moore.
He first was named to the Essex County Common Pleas Court in 1924 by Gov. George H. Silzer. Moore appointed him to the Circuit Court in 1926 and reappointed him during the second Moore administration.
Porter's appointment maintains the five to four Republican majority on the Supreme Court. When Moore first took office, it was reported that he would name a Democrat to reverse the balance, but later it was understood that the seat would go to a Republican.
The terms of Chief Justice Brogan and Chancellor Campbell, both Democrats, expire during Moore's present administration and it was understood that the Democrats felt that by appointing a G. O. P. man to the Lloyd vacancy they could forestall any criticism of continuing two of their own party in the highest judicial posts in the state.
Porter is a resident of Montclair.
He was born in Somerville, April 13, 1877, and moved with his parents to Newark in 1885. At the age of 12 he went to work in the Newark office of the Bureau of Internal Revenue, where he remained until January 1, 1910.
Meanwhile, he went to school at night and in 1902 was graduated from the New York University's evening law school. He was admitted to the New Jersey bar as an attorney in 1904 and as a counselor in 1907. From 1910 until his appointment to Common Pleas Court he practiced law in Newark.
Legislative correspondents here re called Porter as a capable attorney who took part in a number of public hearings on bills. He usually represented liquor interests in hearings on measures governing that industry.
The Supreme Court appointment is for seven years and pays $18,000 annually. Justice Lloyd ended his term last Saturday and chose to retire at $9000 a year, thus causing the vacancy.
Justice Donges, now sitting in the Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland and Salem counties district, is expected to take over Lloyd's old district of Camden and Gloucester counties, while Justice Perskie may move down from the Burlington, Monmouth and Ocean counties .district to the so-called "Shore Circuit" vacated by Donges.
Justices select their own districts according to seniority and usually chose one near their residence. Since Donges lives in Camden he is expected to choose Camden and Gloucester. Perskie's home is in Atlantic City, and it is believed he will take over the shore district.
This will leave the Burlington, Monmouth and Ocean circuit open for Porter, provided some other justice does not choose it.
Porter's appointment apparently dashed the hopes of South Jersey Democrats that they might get a judgeship out of the Supreme Court shift. They had anticipated that if Palmer, who had the backing of Senator Powell and other Hoffmanite Republicans, were named to the Supreme Court, some local Democrat would take Palmer's place on Circuit. With Porter being appointed, however, his successor on the Circuit bench probably will be Grossman or some other North Jersey man.
Reilly, for 27 years connected with the Federal Trust Company, Newark, and now treasurer of the institution, is best known politically since the inauguration of President Roosevelt for his work in connection with the Birthday Ball committee. He has been treasurer of the committee in Essex county each year, and served in a like capacity for the Jackson Day Dinner committees. He is a member of the American Institute of Banking.
In addition to his post with the Federal Trust, Reilly is president of the North Newark and secretary of the Newark 21 Building and Loan Associations. He never before has held public office.
In his youth Reilly was well known as a professional basketball player. Later, he enlisted in the Navy during the World War. He never married..
Camden Courier-Post - February 5, 1938
|Camden Courier-Post - February 8, 1938|
CASE PLANNED ON POLICE PENSIONS
A test suit to clarify the law governing a two-percent assessment against the pension salary of James R. Clay, retired Camden police sergeant, will be brought by the City of Camden through Firmin Michel, city counsel.
This was learned yesterday when counsel for Clay confirmed the report. Michel, after first ruling the money was illegally deducted for a period of several years, decided to oppose the writ of mandamus sought by Alex Schueneman, Jr., attorney for Clay.
John J. Crean, assistant city solicitor, stated the legal department deemed it advisable to settle the matter in the Supreme Court in an effort to clarify the law. Crean spoke in the absence of Michel, who was not available for a statement.
Under the act concerning pensions, four percent of salary is deducted and contributed to the police and firemen's pension fund. The two percent is in addition to the regular pension assessment. This amount is set aside for the pensions of widows of deceased pensioners.
Schueneman contends that inasmuch as Clay has no immediate survivor to receive a pension he should receive his pension salary without the additional two percent assessment.
"The point in question is debatable and the law is not entirely clear," said Crean." The city does not want to deprive any pensioner of his rightful amount. The law should be clarified by the court. The city legal department will oppose the writ of mandamus in the form of a test case.
|Camden Courier-Post - February 10, 1938|
LODGE HOST TO NEW MEMBERS
One of the largest crowds ever is expected, with the local lodge playing host to the Hammonton lodge on the same night.
new membership campaign is sponsored by the Supreme Lodge, Loyal Order
of Moose, Membership committee, in honor of the twenty-
In June, 1913, Supreme Court Justice Ralph W. E. Donges, then Supreme Dictator of the Loyal Order of Moose, dedicated Mooseheart City, now celebrating its silver anniversary.
Moosehaven Governor Thomas A. Colsey and Al Rosenheck, past dictator, have been named by Dictator George J. Scherer to head the campaign for new members in Camden.
The degree staff and team will be attired in their new uniforms for the occasion and will be headed by Leon B. Heffelfinger, Joseph B. Jones and Charles Hughes.
Another feature of the night will be a birthday party for all members who joined the lodge during February of any year. Scherer will call the meeting to order at 8 p. m.
Camden Courier-Post * February 15, 1938
Bosco Faces Hearing Today on Murder Charge in Holdup Death COUNTY JAIL AIDES REFUSE TO ACCEPT PRISONER OF CITY
Sam Bosco, central city barber held since Friday on a murder indictment, finally will get a police court hearing today, it was decided yesterday.
Handcuffed but composed, Bosco appeared briefly before Police Judge Mariano yesterday, but there was no formal hearing then because defense counsel held that the city court no longer had jurisdiction since an indictment was found.
Judge Mariano agreed that the indictment removed the case from his jurisdiction and placed it in the hands of the county, but later when Bosco was taken to the county prison on transfer from the city jail, attaches there refused to admit him on the grounds there was no commitment from a judge.
Went Berserk in Jail
Then it was that his lawyer, John L. Morrissey, and Mariano agreed that a formal hearing should be conducted today and commitment papers for the county jail prepared. After that, Morrissey said, he probably will seek his client's release on a writ of habeas corpus before a higher court.
Meanwhile, Bosco will remain in the city jail, where, according to police, he went berserk Saturday and, after flinging a plate of food in the turnkey's face, threatened him with a jagged piece of the broken dish. For that reason, he was handcuffed when taken before Mariano.
Yesterday's arraignment was to have been a further hearing on material witness charges against Bosco in connection with the death of Angelo Magalas, fatally wounded during an alleged holdup of a card game in which Magalas and Bosco were playing in a Penn Street house last January 10.
Morrissey pointed out that since the previous hearing the case had been taken out of the hands of the city and was now a matter of the county prosecutor's office by reason of the murder indictment. Mariano said he was in accord with that reasoning.
Bosco, who showed no sign of having lost control of himself, then was led away. After the hearing, Morrissey said:
"I intend to go before Common Pleas Judge Baldwin or Justice Donges and seek a writ of habeas corpus. This will permit me to see what the indictment contains, and if the evidence does not support a murder charge— as we are certain it does not— the charge might be changed to manslaughter, which would be bailable."
The indictment against Bosco will not be formally handed up until
Friday, and it was not certain whether Morrissey would wait until then
or would act at once..
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