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    Judge Isaac Parker: A Scarce Signed Document in the Hand of the "Hanging Judge." Parker passed the bar in 1859 at the age of 21, and by the late 1860s he had achieved prominence in Missouri as a lawyer and politician. He won a 6 year term as judge of the Twelfth Missouri Circuit in 1868, and as a Reconstructionist Republican won two terms in Congress in 1870-74. But the political winds changed in favor of the Democrats in Missouri, and Parker found himself out of a job. However, the Republicans still controlled the national government and in 1875 President Grant appointed Parker to the first of his Federal judgeships. By the time his career as a jurist was ended by illness in 1896, Parker had tried 13,490 cases, 344 of which were capital offenses, and he sentenced 160 people to hang, but only 79 executions were actually carried out.

    Starting in the 1950s he was portrayed in a series of novels, films and television productions including "True Grit" and "Hang 'em High," in which Pat Hingle gave a noteworthy portrayal of Parker as anti-hero. In "Belle Star" he sentences multiple criminals to death by hanging. It was largely due to these fictionalized accounts of his life that he acquired notoriety as the "Hanging Judge."

    The 1868 document offered here is a True Bill for "assault with intent to kill." The lengthy document is almost entirely in Parker's hand and is signed by him as District Attorney. 7.75" x 12.25", and in excellent condition but for a couple of minor ink smudges and stress to the folds in the paper.


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    Auction Dates
    October, 2015
    25th Sunday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 3
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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