HON. HENRY C. DIBBLE


Hon. Henry C. Dibble of San Francisco has been for many years conspicuous, not only at the bar and in politics and public affairs, but also in the realm of journalism and literature and commands the high regard and esteem of men in all the activities of a very busy and useful life. He has been a resident of San Francisco since February, 1883. In 1885-7 he was assistant United States attorney. He has served several terms in the assembly of the state legislature and has always been recognized as the leader on the Republican side. As a parlimentarian, he is, perhaps, without a peer in the state. He has also been an editorial writer--trenchant, forceful and broad-minded. He has brilliant talents in legal fields and there is hardly a phase of public life and professional activity with which his versatile mind has not at sometime been concerned and in which his ability has not made him an influential factor.

He was born in the state of Indiana, November 8, 1844. He is a lineal descendant in the ninth generation of Daniel Goodkin, who founded Newport News in Virginia in 1621 and whose son, Major General Daniel Gookin, being a non-comformist, removed to Massachusetts in 1644, and who was a friend and confidential correspondent of Oliver Cromwell, whom he visited during the protectorate. On his mother's side he is of French Huguenot extraction. Three of his ancestors fought on the patriot side in the Revolutionary war.

At the age of eighteen he enlisted in the Union army and served until he lost a leg at the siege of Port Hudson, after which he settled in Louisiana, with which state his life and work were identified in various important ways for eighteen years. He prepared himself for legal practice and was admitted to the bar by the supreme court of Louisiana in 1865, several months before he became of age; two years later he graduated from the law department of the University of Louisiana with the degree of LL. B. He began both his active practice and connection with politics at an early age. He was at the head of the local Republican organization in New Orleans when he was twenty-three years old. He maintained this prominence in Louisiana for ten years and during that period he was judge of the eighth district court and assistant and acting attorney general of the state. He was also president of the school board in New Orleans for six years. He was prominently identified with many of the most stirring and dangerous episodes in Louisiana from 1866 to 1877. He was twice a candidate for Congress but was defeated.

Before locating in California he spent two years in Arizona, practicing law at Tombstone and toward the end of his residence there he had charge of the mines of Haggin and Hearst. He formed a law partnership in Arizona with Hon. James F. Lewis, ex-chief justice of the supreme court of Nevada, and they came to San Francisco in 1883. He was later a partner with Louis T. Haggin, a son of James B. Haggin.

Judge Dibble has a wife and several children, one of his sons, a graduate of the University of California, being his law-partner.

He is the author, among other productions, of a strong romantic novel dealing with western life entitled "The Sequel to a Tragedy," published by Lippincott in 1900. He has also gained a reputation as a public speaker, versatile, witty and prompt on all occasions, and is in the first rank of orators in the state.

Source: History of the New California Its Resources and People, Volume II

The Lewis Publishing Company - 1905
Edited by Leigh H. Irvine


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