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Below is a family biography included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company; Elwood Roberts, Editor.  These biographies are valuable for genealogy research in discovering missing ancestors or filling in the details of a family tree. Family biographies often include far more information than can be found in a census record or obituary.  Details will vary with each biography but will often include the date and place of birth, parent names including mothers' maiden name, name of wife including maiden name, her parents' names, name of children (including spouses if married), former places of residence, occupation details, military service, church and social organization affiliations, and more.  There are often ancestry details included that cannot be found in any other type of genealogical record.

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HON. AARON S. SWARTZ, one of the best known judges in Pennsylvania, has presided over the courts of Montgomery county since 1887. He has made a reputation as a jurist, and has been frequently mentioned in connection with the supreme court bench of the state.

Judge Swartz is the son of Jacob Swartz, of an old Pennsylvania-German family. He was born in Towamencin township, Montgomery county, February 24, 1849. He was reared on a farm, and his early education was obtained in the public schools and in Freeland Seminary, the predecessor of Ursinus College, at Collegeville. After completing the course at Freeland Seminary he entered Lafayette College at Easton, and graduated from that institution in 1871 with high honors. He accepted a position as principal of the public schools at Phenixville, in Chester county, and taught there very successfully. Having decided to adopt the law as his profession, he entered the office of Gilbert Rodman Fox as a student, and was admitted to the bar of Montgomery county in 1875, passing the requisite examination in May of that year. At that time he was deputy clerk of the United States district court for the eastern district of Pennsylvania. Soon after his admission to the bar he resigned this position, and at once devoted his entire time and attention to the practice of law in Norristown. In 1877 he was given the nomination for district attorney by the Republican party, of which he has always been a member, and, although the county had been usually Democratic, he was defeated by less than two hundred votes. He rose rapidly in his profession and soon enjoyed a large and constantly increasing practice, being recognized as a leading member of the bar at an age when most young lawyers are still waiting for clients. He was the nominee of the Republican party for the judgeship in 1881. In 1882 he became solicitor for the board of county commissioners, performing the duties of that responsible position with ability, sound judgment and fidelity to the public interests. He continued in that position until his elevation to the bench in 1887. Among the more important of the earlier cases in his career as a lawyer was that of Moses Sutton, who was tried for the murder of Mrs. Roeder, at Blue Bell. The case was tried in 1878. He was associated with B. E. Chain, another prominent attorney, as counsel for the defense. The trial resulted in the acquittal of Sutton. In 1887 when the legislature created the office of additional law judge in Montgomery county, Mr. Swartz was by common consent recognized as the person who should be chosen to fill the position. He was appointed to the office by Governor James A. Beaver, and soon became president judge by the death of Judge Boyer, and was elected to the position in November of that year by a large majority. Ten years later he was re-elected without opposition, the Democrats of the county making no nomination. As a judge, Aaron S. Swartz has made a splendid record. He is a close and steady worker, his indefatigable industry and conscientious fidelity to right and justice being his strongest characteristics on the bench. His opinions are models of clear statement and logical reasoning, showing the results of careful research and earnest work. His decisions in a multitude of cases brought before him are the best evidence of his sound judgment and his care in reaching his conclusions.

Judge Swartz is prominent in the First Presbyterian church of Norristown, and has been for many years the earnest and esteemed superintendent of its Sunday school. Firm in his religious convictions, he is a model citizen, always manifesting an active interest in the welfare of the community in which he lives, and in the affairs of the county, the state and the nation. In manner he is dignified, but always affable and kind to all. His whole career as a judge proves him to be a man who is not only desirous of enforcing the laws and inflicting the proper punishment for crime, but also solicitous for the reformation of the transgressor. In politics Judge Swartz has always exerted his influence in behalf of good government. In the spring of 1904, when there was a vacancy on the supreme court bench of Pennsylvania, his friends urged his claims to consideration as a candidate. Although he was not named for the position by the Republican state convention, he had the satisfaction of receiving the hearty support of the entire bar of the county, of the newspaper press without regard to party affiliations, and of the people of the county.

Judge Swartz married Miss A. Louisa Keller, daughter of John Keller, a well known citizen of Towamencin township. Their children: Gertrude, wife of R. George Buchanan; Edna, who graduated from Wilson College at Chambersburg; Aaron S., Jr., a student at Princeton University; and Anna, a student of the Norristown High School.

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This family biography is one of more than 1,000 biographies included in the Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania published in 1904 by T. S. Benham & Company and The Lewis Publishing Company.  For the complete description, click here: Biographical Annals of Montgomery County, Pennsylvania

View additional Montgomery County, Pennsylvania family biographies here: Montgomery County, Pennsylvania Biographies

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