Wells, Ebenezer T.

Ebenezer T. Wells
Richland, Oswego county, N.Y.
Henry county, Ills.
Rock Island, Ills.
Gilpin County, CO

Page 682

Ebenezer T. Wells, former Judge of the Supreme Court of the Territory of Colorado and of the State of Colorado, was born in the town of Richland, Oswego county, N.Y., May 15, 1835.  His father was a merchant and the son of Rev. William Wells of Brattleboro, Vt., who was an eminent clergyman of the Unitarian faith and who settled at Brattleboro soon after the close of the war of the Revolution.

Judge Wells’ father removed with his family to Henry county, Ills., in 1838, where the subject of this sketch spent his boyhood.  Entering Knox College, young Wells was graduated there in 1854, and then began the study of law.  Admitted to the bar in March, 1856, he located at Rock Island, Ills., and was there engaged in the practice of his profession until the outbreak of the Civil War.

Judge Wells saw much hard service throughout that war.  Commissioned a Lieutenant in the Eighty-Ninth Regiment Illinois Volunteer Infantry, he was soon promoted Captain in the same organization.  Later, he was appointed by the President an Assistant Adjutant General, and his last year of service was as Assistant Adjutant General to the Third Division of the Fourteenth army Corps and the Sixth Division of the Cavalry Corps, in the Army of the Cumberland.

Judge Wells came to Colorado in the autumn of 1865, and located in Gilpin county where he followed his profession until March 1, 1871, when he was appointed Judge of the Supreme Court of the Territory; a position in which he ably served four years.  Upon Colorado’s admission to the Union in 1876, he was elected to the Supreme Bench of the State, but resigned before the expiration of the first year of his term.  Additional particulars of his service on the Supreme bench appear elsewhere in this volume.

Judge wells was a member of the Territorial Legislative Assembly in the winter of 1866-67, and framed the revision of the territorial statutes known as the "Revised Statutes of 1868."  Elected a member of the State Constitutional Convention of 1876, he bore a prominent part in framing the fundamental law of our State.  He has also been twice chosen as one of Colorado’s Presidential Electors.

Upon his retirement from the Supreme Bench, Judge Wells became a citizen of Denver and has since been, as he now is, actively engaged in the practice of his profession.  In politics he was long a Republican, but in recent years his convictions have led him to affiliation with the Democratic party.