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. Chief Justice Stephen Sewall died on 10 Sept. 1760, and a bitter contention ensued
over the succession to his post. According to a retrospective account by Edmund Trowbridge,
the two candidates who made themselves most conspicuous by their own efforts were
William Brattle and the elder James Otis. When, on 13 Nov., Lt. Gov. Thomas Hutchinson
was named, the two disappointed candidates were so “very angry with him and every
one else they knew or suspected had not favoured their Respective Claims,” that much
of the subsequent political squabbling in Massachusetts was a result of their irritation
(Trowbridge to William Bollan, 15 July 1762, MHS, Colls.
, 74 :66). Neither Brattle nor Otis nor Hutchinson had had regular legal training,
and so it would appear that JA
is arguing against the appointment of any one of the three. If he had completed his
article, we would doubtless know whom he was for
Cite web page as: Founding Families: Digital Editions of the Papers of the Winthrops and the Adamses, ed.C. James Taylor. Boston: Massachusetts Historical Society, 2014.