Maryland Court of Appeals’ Chief Judges

The Maryland Court of Appeals was formally established as Maryland’s highest court by the Maryland Constitution in 1776. Chief Judge Bell has served as Maryland’s 23rd chief judge. Here’s the full list:

1778-1806 Benjamin Rumsey
Harford County.  Born October 6, 1734, probably in Cecil County.  Son of William Rumsey and wife Sabina Blaidenburgh.  Married Mary Hall. Died in Joppa, Harford County, March 7, 1808.

1806-1824 Jeremiah Townley Chase
Anne Arundel County.  Born in Baltimore County, May 23, 1748.  Son of Richard Chase and wife Catherine.  Married Hester Baldwin.  Died in Annapolis, May 11, 1828. Buried in the St. Anne's Cemetery, Annapolis.

1824-1844 John Buchanan
Washington County.  Born in Prince George's County, 1772.  Son of Thomas Buchanan and wife Mary Cook. Married Sophia Williams.  Died November 6, 1844.

1844-1848 Stevenson Archer
Harford County. Born at "Medical Hall," near Churchville, Harford County, October 11, 1786.  Son of John Archer.  Married Pamelia Barney Hays. Died at "Medical Hall," June 26, 1848.  Buried in Presbyterian Cemetery, Churchville.

1848-1851 Thomas Beale Dorsey
Howard County.  Born in Anne Arundel County, October 17, 1780.  Son of John Worthington Dorsey and wife Comfort Worthington. Married Milcah Goodwin. Died December 26, 1855.  Buried in St. John's Churchyard, Ellicott City, Howard County.

1851-1861 John Carroll LeGrand
Baltimore City. Born in 1814.  Son of Samuel D. LeGrand.  Died  December 28, 1861.

1861-1867 Richard Johns Bowie
Montgomery County.  Born in Georgetown, Washington, D.C., June 23, 1807. Son of Col. Washington Bowie and wife Margaret Johns. Married Catherine L. Williams. Died at "Glenview," Montgomery County, March 12, 1881. Buried in Rockville Cemetery, Rockville, Montgomery County.

1867-1883 James Lawrence Bartol
Baltimore City.  Born in Havre de Grace, Harford County, June 4, 1813.  Son of George Bartol. Married Miss Charbounier. Died in Baltimore City, June 23, 1887.  Buried in Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City.

1883-1893 Richard Henry Alvey
Washington County.  Born in St. Mary's County, March 6, 1826.  Son of George Alvey and wife Harriet Wicklin. Married (1) Mary Wharton; (2) Julia Jones Hays. Died in Hagerstown, Washington County, September 14, 1906.

1893-1896 John Mitchell Robinson
Queen Anne's County. Born in Tuckahoe Neck, Caroline County, December 6, 1827.  Son of Peter Robinson and wife Sarah Mitchell. Married Marianna Stoughton Emory.  Died in Annapolis, January 14, 1896. Buried at "Waverly," Queen Anne's County.

1896-1907 James McSherry
Frederick County.  Born in Frederick, Frederick County, December 30, 1842.  Son of James McSherry and wife Eliza Spurrier. Married Clara Louise McAleer.  Died in Frederick, October 23, 1907.

1907-1924 Andrew Hunter Boyd
Allegany County.  Born in Winchester, Virginia, July 15, 1849.  Son of Rev. A. H. H. Boyd.  Married Berien M. Thurston. Died August 2, 1935.

1924-1943 Carroll T. Bond
Baltimore City.  Born in Baltimore City, June 13, 1873.  Son of James Bond and wife Elizabeth Lyon.  Died in Baltimore City, January 18, 1943. Buried in Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City.

1943-1944 D. Lindley Sloan
Allegany County.  Born in Pekin, Allegany County, April 3, 1874.  Son of James M. Sloan and wife Ella Frederick.  Married Marian DeWitt.  Died May 13, 1962.

1944-1952 Ogle Marbury
Prince George's County.  Born near Guilford, Howard County, August 23, 1882.  Son of Rev. Ogle Marbury and wife Eleanora Brevitt MacKenzie. Married Eliza Gardner Cronmiller.  Died October 3, 1973.

1952 Charles Markell
Baltimore City.  Born in Baltimore City, December 16, 1882.  Son of John Markell and wife Elizabeth Charlton Harris.  Married Jeanette Jones. Died February 24, 1955.

1952-1954 Simon E. Sobeloff
Baltimore City.  Born in Baltimore City, December 3, 1894.  Married Irene Ehrlich. Died July 11, 1973.  Buried in Friendship Cemetery, Baltimore City.

1954-1964 Frederick W. Brune
Baltimore City.  Born in Baltimore City, October 15, 1894.  Son of Frederick W. Brune III and wife Blanche Shoemaker. Married Mary Washington Keyser.  Died in Baltimore City, February 19, 1972.

1964 William L. Henderson
Baltimore City.  Born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, December 8, 1894. Died March 23, 1984.

1964-1966 Stedman Prescott
Montgomery County. Born in Norbeck, Montgomery County, August 30, 1896.  Son of Alexander F. Prescott and wife Edith Stanley Kellogg. Married Edith Calendar Minnick.  Died November 14, 1968.

1966-1972 Hall Hammond
Baltimore County.  Born in Baltimore City, May 18, 1902.  Son of William S. Hammond and wife Rosalie Hall. Married Elizabeth Ashton Luck.  Died November 27, 1991.

1972-1996 Robert C. Murphy
Baltimore County.  Born in Baltimore City, October 9, 1926.  Son of Leo Joseph Murphy and wife Eva LaFontaine.  Married Helen Klopatch.  Died October 31, 2000.

1996-2013 Robert M. Bell
Baltimore City.  Born in Rocky Mount, North Carolina, July 6, 1943.

Source: Edward C. Papenfuse, et al., Archives of Maryland, Historical List, new series, Vol. 1. Annapolis, MD: Maryland State Archives, 1990.
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