Preserving the Past, Informing the Future
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Albert Carroll Bill was born in Hartford, September 29, 1863, and died at his, home in Wethersfield on. December 14, 1944. While he was very young his parents removed to Enfield, Connecticut, where his father conducted an extensive farm for many years. It was the desire of his parents that he should devote himself to farming, but at the age of seventeen he determined that he should enter the legal profession and therefore charted his course accordingly.
He received his education at the schools in Enfield and also the Hartford Public High School. His attendance at the latter institution made necessary a daily trip by train between Enfield and Hartford and the completion of his chores on the farm before leaving home and after his return.
On January 3, 1883, he commenced the study of law in the office of the Honorable Charles H, Briscoe, the first judge of the Court of Common Pleas for Hartford County. At this time the Superior Court held its sessions in the old state house on Main Street. After an oral examination before a committee composed of Messrs. Robert Wells, Charles E. Gross, Edward S. White and Samuel O. Prentice, he was admitted to the bar on May 21, 1885.
After his admission to the bar he was associated with the firm of Briscoe and Andrews. In 1893 he formed a partnership with the late Joseph P. Tuttle which continued until Mr. Tuttle became a judge of the Superior Court in 1913. Judge Bill later formed a partnership with his son Albert S. Bill and engaged actively in the practice of the law until a very short time before his death.
In 1887, he was appointed clerk of the Probate Court for the district of Hartford. Subsequently, he was appointed clerk, associate judge and finally judge of the Police Court for the city of Hartford. He served in the last capacity for a period of eight years.
From 1890 to 1892, he served as councilman from the old fourth ward in Hartford. In 1903, he was appointed to the board of police commissioners for a term of three years, and was elected president of that board in 1906. He served in the Connecticut National Guard for many years, and as quartermaster of the Old First Regiment on the staff of Colonel Edward Shulse with rank of captain. He was a member of the Governor's Foot Guard for eleven years. At the outbreak of World War I he was appointed chairman of the draft and exemption board of the third district of Hartford with jurisdiction of some 15,000 registrants and held this office until the end of the war. He devoted many months of work, day and night, to this important task. In 1918, he was appointed a commissioner on the water board and served during the construction of the compensating reservoir at New Hartford.
On October 24, 1889, he married Bessie M. Collins of Hartford, who survived him. They had four children, Charles C. Bill, Gladys Bill Horton, Albert S. Bill, and Julie Bill Sunderland.
Judge Bill was truly a member of the old school of Connecticut lawyers. His pleadings were drafted after a thorough study of the law and with meticulous care. His cases were carefully and fully prepared before trial. In the courtroom he was an antagonist entitled to the deepest respect by opposing counsel. He always enjoyed the respect of the bench. Whether engaged in trial work or office practice he was worthy advocate of his clients' causes and served their interests with unwavering fidelity. In a very full and busy professional career he gave liberally of his talents to public service.
To those of us who were favored in knowing him well, there came a deep appreciation of a very rare companionship. He was devoted to his friends and basked in their companionship. To the very end he maintained active, intimate associations with a very wide circle of friends. His fine old home on the bank of the Connecticut River in Wethersfield was a frequent meeting place for his friends and invitations to dinner when shad from the river and asparagus and strawberries from his carefully tended garden could grace his table. He was gifted with qualities that drew people to him. In his broad circle he left a vacant chair that time has not filled.[footer.htm]