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Medad Curtiss

June 25, 1769
April 1, 1834
Home Town:
Norfolk, CT
Later Residences:
Onondaga, NY
Lucy Lawrence Curtis (October 12, 1789)
Biographical Notes:
Medad Curtiss was the grandson of Zeubelon Curtiss of Farmington, CT and the son of Thomas Curtiss and Martha Cowles of Farmington. His father died in the Revolutionary War and his mother remarried Richard Lewis. After attending the Litchfield Law School, Medad read the law with Augustus Pettibone of Norfolk, CT who had also attended the Litchfield Law School in 1788. He married Lucy Lawrence, the daughter of Ariel and Lucy (Wilcox) Lawrence of Norfolk. Lucy's sister, Susannah married Augustus Pettibone. Around 1795, Medad and his wife moved to Onondaga, NY where he practiced law and served as a Justice of the Peace and as the Indian Agent for the Onondaga Tribe. The tribe adopted Medad and gave him the name "Wa Wa Winsooki" meaning "one who helps." He was known as an honest lawyer and was ...

Years at LLS:

Profession / Service
Lawyer; Political Office
Admitted To Bar:
Litchfield County, CT in 1797
Training with Other Lawyers:
After his marriage he read the law in the office of Judge Pettibone.
Local Posts:
Justice of the Peace (Onondaga, NY)

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.
"Rules of the Debating Society of Law Students in Mr. Reeve's Office," LHS
Secondary Sources:
Cowles, Col. Calvin Duval, comp. Genealogy of the Cowles Families in America, vol. 1. New Haven, CT: Tuttle Morehouse & Taylor Co., 1929.

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