Bradley B. Meeker

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Bradley B. Meeker
Bradley B. Meeker.png
Second Associate Justice of the
Minnesota Territorial Supreme Court
In office
March 19, 1849 – March 18, 1853
Nominated byZachary Taylor
Preceded byPosition created
Succeeded byMoses Sherburne
Personal details
Born(1813-03-13)March 13, 1813
Fairfield, Connecticut, USA
DiedFebruary 19, 1873(1873-02-19) (aged 59)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA
Cause of deathApoplexy
Resting placeGreens Farms Church Upper Cemetery
Westport, Connecticut, USA
41°08′10″N 73°19′44″W / 41.13625°N 73.32885°W / 41.13625; -73.32885Coordinates: 41°08′10″N 73°19′44″W / 41.13625°N 73.32885°W / 41.13625; -73.32885
Alma materYale University (1802)

Bradley B. Meeker (March 13, 1813 – February 19, 1873) was an American jurist, lawyer, and businessman.

Meeker was born March 13, 1813, in Fairfield, Connecticut to Joseph and Rhoda Meeker (née Nichols). His family was very poor, despite being descendants of one of their city's founder.[1] Meeker was related to Truman Smith, Senator who inspired him to pursue law and serve in the Minnesota Territorial Supreme Court.[2] With the help of Governor Gideon Tomlinson, Meeker went to Weston Academy and graduated from Yale University in 1802. Meeker practiced law in Richmond, Kentucky from 1838 to 1845 and in Flemingsburg, Kentucky.[1]

Meeker came to Minnesota Territory in 1848.[2] After making a name for himself in the world of law, Meeker was nominated to serve on the Minnesota Territorial Supreme Court by President Zachary Taylor on March 15, 1849, with the Senate confirming him March 19.[3] He took the oath of office on May 9, 1849. When his four-year term expired on March 18, 1853, Meeker was replaced by President Franklin Pierce when he picked his own justices.[1][3] Of the three justices on the court at the time (Chief Justice Goodrich, Justice Cooper, and himself), he was the least controversial.[1]

The Meeker Island Lock and Dam c. 1910

Once he left the Minnesota Territorial Supreme Court, Meeker was elected as a delegate of the Minnesota Constitutional Convention, served as one of the first regents of the University of Minnesota, and was a charter member of the Minnesota Historical Society.[3][1] Meeker was a charter member of the Minnesota Historical Society and also served on the University of Minnesota Board of Regents.[1] He owned land on the Mississippi River, including Meeker Island named after him. In 1856, he had a county named in his honour.[4]

Meeker died suddenly in Milwaukee, Wisconsin of Apoplexy while on a trip on February 19, 1873.[5] He was never married to anybody.[2] He currently rests at the Greens Farms Church Upper Cemetery located in Westport, Connecticut.[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Bradley B. Meeker". Minnesota State Law Library. Archived from the original on 2017-11-20. Retrieved 2019-06-30.
  2. ^ a b c "Death of Judge Meeker" (PDF). The Winona Herald. 1873-02-28. p. 2. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2019-07-01. Retrieved 2019-07-01.
  3. ^ a b c "Bradley B. Meeker (1813 - 1873)" (PDF). Minnesota Legal History Project. 2012-05-19. Archived (PDF) from the original on 2019-07-01. Retrieved 2019-07-01.
  4. ^ Gannett, Henry (1905). The Origin of Certain Place Names in the United States. U.S. Government Printing Office. p. 204. OCLC 1156805. OL 250514M.
  5. ^ a b Kiecker, Glenn (2013-09-02). "Judge Bradley B. Meeker". Find a Grave. Retrieved 2019-06-30.