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Charles Bartlett Phelps

May 1788
December 21, 1858
Home Town:
Chatham, CT
Later Residences:
Woodbury, CT
Elsie Marshall Phelps (1809)
Amanda Parker Phelps (unknown)
Biographical Notes:
Charles Bartlett Phelps was born at Chatham, now Portland, Conn., on May 31st, 1788. He was the eldest son of Dr. Elisha Phelps, a physician. He entered the Litchfield Law School, when he was only eighteen years of age. So assiduously did he apply himself to his studies, in order to keep pace with his fellow-students, most of whom had the advantage of age and a superior education, that his health failed. At last, being threatened with pulmonary disease, he left Litchfield for Woodbury, where he entered his name as a student with Hon. Noah B. Benedict. Here he became an inmate of the house which he occupied until his death—since known as the " Judge Phelps Place," but more recently as the " Parker Academy."

In 1809 he married Elsie, youngest daughter of the Rev. John Hutgers Marshall, ...

Years at LLS:

Profession / Service
Lawyer; Political Office
Admitted To Bar:
1809 in Litchfield County Court
Training with Other Lawyers:
He studied with Noah B. Benedict after attending the Litchfield Law School.
State Posts:
State Representative (CT) 1831, 1837, 1852
State Senator (CT) 1843
State Committees:
Speaker of the State House of Representatives in 1852.
Local Posts:
Judge of Probate (Woodbury, CT) 1823-1844
Postmaster (Woodbury, CT) 1831-1841
Judge of the County Court (Litchfield County, CT) 1840

Related Objects and Documents
help The Citation of Attendance provides primary source documentation of the student’s attendance at the Litchfield Female Academy and/or the Litchfield Law School. If a citation is absent, the student is thought to have attended but currently lacks primary source confirmation.

Records for the schools were sporadic, especially in the formative years of both institutions. If instructors kept comprehensive records for the Litchfield Female Academy or the Litchfield Law School, they do not survive. Researchers and staff have identified students through letters, diaries, family histories and genealogies, and town histories as well as catalogues of students printed in various years. Art and needlework have provided further identification of Female Academy Students, and Litchfield County Bar records document a number of Law School students. The history of both schools and the identification of the students who attended them owe credit to the early 20th century research and documentation efforts of Emily Noyes Vanderpoel and Samuel Fisher, and the late 20th century research and documentation efforts of Lynne Templeton Brickley and the Litchfield Historical Society staff.
Litchfield County Bar Association Records, 1806 & 1809, Litchfield Historical Society, Helga J. Ingraham Memorial Library.

Catalogue of the Litchfield Law School (Hartford, CT: Press of Case, Tiffany, and Company, 1849), 6.
Secondary Sources:
Loomis, Dwight and J. Gilbert Calhoun. The Judicial and Civil History of Connecticut. Boston: The Boston History Company, 1895.

Kilbourne, Dwight C. The Bench and Bar of Litchfield County, Connecticut 1709-1909. Litchfield, CT: Published by the Author, 1909.

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