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William Atwell Cheney

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William Atwell Cheney

Birth
Boston, Suffolk County, Massachusetts, USA
Death
10 Aug 1925 (aged 77)
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA
Burial
Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA Add to Map
Memorial ID
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CHENEY, WILLIAM ATWELL, Counselor-at-Law (ex-Judge Superior Court), Los Angeles, California, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, February 18, 1848, the son of Benjamin Franklin Cheney and Martha (Whitney) Cheney.
In 1871, at New Haven, Connecticut, he married Anna E. Skinner, of that city, and to them there was born a son, Harvey D. Cheney, now a practicing attorney in Los Angeles.
Judge Cheney is descended of notable New England stock, the members of his family on both sides having been distinguished in the history of Massachusetts.
Judge Cheney was educated in public schools and private academies of Boston and was trained for the ministry. He preached for a while after graduating, but soon discovered that was not his vocation and gave it up to study law. Judge Cheney's education was interrupted when he was eighteen years of age by failing health. He left school for a year and spent the time on a trading vessel.
He made his first trip to California in the latter part of 1867, but after remaining about three years, returned to Boston. In 1875 he again went to California and has made his home there since.
He first located in San Francisco, then settled in Plumas County and prosecuted his law studies. He was admitted to the bar shortly after his arrival and in 1877 was elected Judge of Plumas County. He remained on the bench until the old Constitution was changed and the new district created, in 1880, and was then elected to the State Senate from the district Plumas, Butte and Lassen counties. He served in the Senate for three sessions and during that time was a member of the Judiciary Committee, having in charge the revision of the legal codes. He was at this time also in partnership with Creed Hammond of Sacramento.
In 1882, before the expiration of his term as State Senator, Judge Cheney moved to Los Angeles and there took up the practice of his profession. He also took an active part in politics and stumped the southern part of the State in behalf of the national Republican party. Shortly after his arrival in Los Angeles he was elected a member of the Board of Education and served for a year. He was at this time in partnership with Lieutenant Governor John Mansfield of California.
In 1884 Judge Cheney was elected to the Superior Bench of Los Angeles County. He and Judge Anson Brunson were the only judges at that time and, incidentally, the only Republicans who had been elected to the Los Angeles Count Bench up to that period. Judge Cheney had charge of the criminal department of the court and for six years administered justice in such manner that his name stands among the most honored in the history of California jurisprudence.
In 1891 Judge Cheney retired from the bench to re-enter private practice and became associated with Cornelius Cronin. Shortly afterward he was chosen Chief Counsel for the Los Angeles Gas and Electric Corporation and subsidiary companies and has served down to date.
Judge Cheney has been one of the staunchest supporters of the Republican party in the West for more than a quarter of a century, and, as one of the powerful orators in its ranks, has spoken in dozens of campaigns. He was a prominent figure in State, county and district conventions from his entry into politics until press of private business prevented longer an active political life.
He has a philosophy which he has put into practice. It is that a man, to be a successful counselor to others, should "know everything about some things and something about every thing." He believes that whatever intellectual power any man may have, whether small or great, it may double itself by rest acquired through a process of alternation. Judge Cheney has exemplified this philosophy by turning his energies to other directions than those in which he temporarily wearied. He is, therefore, no stranger in the field of painting, sculpture and science. It is for this professional and philosophic reason and because he believes in getting as much out of life as life has for a man's mind, that his life, despite his public and semi-public activities, has been that of a student. He has devoted much time to the study and discussion of scientific subjects, including biology, philosophy and sociology. He has been a prolific writer on these and legal matters, one of his principal works being a brief in book form, entitled "Can We Be Sure of Mortality."
Judge Cheney stands at the top of his profession, is a member of the Los Angeles Bar Association and a Fellow of the Academy of Sciences. He also is lecturer on Constitutional Law at the University of Southern California Law School.
Courtesy of Marilyn R. Pankey.
Source: Press Reference Library, Western Edition Notables of the West, Vol. I, Page 75, International News Service, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta. 1913.

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, CA.), P. 3, Col. 2
Sun., Dec. 21, 1890
A NICE TESTIMONIAL
JUDGE CHENEY PRESENTED WITH A FINE DESK
By the Term Trial Jurors of His Court - Highly Complimentary Resolutions - The Judge’s Response.
The term trial jurors in Department One yesterday presented Superior Judge Cheney with a handsome desk as a mark of their esteem.

Los Angeles Times, (Los Angeles, CA.), Aug. 12, 1925
Judge William A. Cheney
WAS PIONEER HERE ON SUPERIOR BENCH
FUNERAL OF AGED JUDGE HERE TODAY
William A. Cheney, Author, Who Died Monday, Will be Buried at Rosedale
Funeral services for former Judge William A. Cheney, 77 years of age, who died Monday morning at his home, 1913 Ocean View Avenue, will be held at 10 o'clock this morning at the Peck & Chase chapel. Burial will be at Rosedale Cemetery.
Mr. Cheney was a retired attorney and presided over the Superior Court here from 1884 until 1890. For many years before his retirement from practice, he had been chief counsel for the Los Angeles Gas and Electric Company.
He was an author, musician, painter and lawyer. His book, "Can We Be Sure of Mortality?" of a scientific and philosophical nature, was published several years ago. In his home, he had installed a huge pipe organ and in his declining years, spent much time with friends and music lovers. He was a great lover of art and did several oil paintings himself.
In the early days of California, Cheney was widely known as a brilliant orator, and his political campaign speeches are remembered by his associates. He was a member of the California State Senate in 1879.
He was born in Boston, Mass, and came to California in 1875, settling at first in the northern part of the State. He came to Los Angeles in 1881. He attended Wilbraham Academy in Massachusetts, but most of his education, it is said, was self-acquired.
Mr. Cheney was a member of the University Club and the Los Angeles Bar Association. He leaves a son, Harvey D. Cheney.
CHENEY, WILLIAM ATWELL, Counselor-at-Law (ex-Judge Superior Court), Los Angeles, California, was born in Boston, Massachusetts, February 18, 1848, the son of Benjamin Franklin Cheney and Martha (Whitney) Cheney.
In 1871, at New Haven, Connecticut, he married Anna E. Skinner, of that city, and to them there was born a son, Harvey D. Cheney, now a practicing attorney in Los Angeles.
Judge Cheney is descended of notable New England stock, the members of his family on both sides having been distinguished in the history of Massachusetts.
Judge Cheney was educated in public schools and private academies of Boston and was trained for the ministry. He preached for a while after graduating, but soon discovered that was not his vocation and gave it up to study law. Judge Cheney's education was interrupted when he was eighteen years of age by failing health. He left school for a year and spent the time on a trading vessel.
He made his first trip to California in the latter part of 1867, but after remaining about three years, returned to Boston. In 1875 he again went to California and has made his home there since.
He first located in San Francisco, then settled in Plumas County and prosecuted his law studies. He was admitted to the bar shortly after his arrival and in 1877 was elected Judge of Plumas County. He remained on the bench until the old Constitution was changed and the new district created, in 1880, and was then elected to the State Senate from the district Plumas, Butte and Lassen counties. He served in the Senate for three sessions and during that time was a member of the Judiciary Committee, having in charge the revision of the legal codes. He was at this time also in partnership with Creed Hammond of Sacramento.
In 1882, before the expiration of his term as State Senator, Judge Cheney moved to Los Angeles and there took up the practice of his profession. He also took an active part in politics and stumped the southern part of the State in behalf of the national Republican party. Shortly after his arrival in Los Angeles he was elected a member of the Board of Education and served for a year. He was at this time in partnership with Lieutenant Governor John Mansfield of California.
In 1884 Judge Cheney was elected to the Superior Bench of Los Angeles County. He and Judge Anson Brunson were the only judges at that time and, incidentally, the only Republicans who had been elected to the Los Angeles Count Bench up to that period. Judge Cheney had charge of the criminal department of the court and for six years administered justice in such manner that his name stands among the most honored in the history of California jurisprudence.
In 1891 Judge Cheney retired from the bench to re-enter private practice and became associated with Cornelius Cronin. Shortly afterward he was chosen Chief Counsel for the Los Angeles Gas and Electric Corporation and subsidiary companies and has served down to date.
Judge Cheney has been one of the staunchest supporters of the Republican party in the West for more than a quarter of a century, and, as one of the powerful orators in its ranks, has spoken in dozens of campaigns. He was a prominent figure in State, county and district conventions from his entry into politics until press of private business prevented longer an active political life.
He has a philosophy which he has put into practice. It is that a man, to be a successful counselor to others, should "know everything about some things and something about every thing." He believes that whatever intellectual power any man may have, whether small or great, it may double itself by rest acquired through a process of alternation. Judge Cheney has exemplified this philosophy by turning his energies to other directions than those in which he temporarily wearied. He is, therefore, no stranger in the field of painting, sculpture and science. It is for this professional and philosophic reason and because he believes in getting as much out of life as life has for a man's mind, that his life, despite his public and semi-public activities, has been that of a student. He has devoted much time to the study and discussion of scientific subjects, including biology, philosophy and sociology. He has been a prolific writer on these and legal matters, one of his principal works being a brief in book form, entitled "Can We Be Sure of Mortality."
Judge Cheney stands at the top of his profession, is a member of the Los Angeles Bar Association and a Fellow of the Academy of Sciences. He also is lecturer on Constitutional Law at the University of Southern California Law School.
Courtesy of Marilyn R. Pankey.
Source: Press Reference Library, Western Edition Notables of the West, Vol. I, Page 75, International News Service, New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta. 1913.

The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, CA.), P. 3, Col. 2
Sun., Dec. 21, 1890
A NICE TESTIMONIAL
JUDGE CHENEY PRESENTED WITH A FINE DESK
By the Term Trial Jurors of His Court - Highly Complimentary Resolutions - The Judge’s Response.
The term trial jurors in Department One yesterday presented Superior Judge Cheney with a handsome desk as a mark of their esteem.

Los Angeles Times, (Los Angeles, CA.), Aug. 12, 1925
Judge William A. Cheney
WAS PIONEER HERE ON SUPERIOR BENCH
FUNERAL OF AGED JUDGE HERE TODAY
William A. Cheney, Author, Who Died Monday, Will be Buried at Rosedale
Funeral services for former Judge William A. Cheney, 77 years of age, who died Monday morning at his home, 1913 Ocean View Avenue, will be held at 10 o'clock this morning at the Peck & Chase chapel. Burial will be at Rosedale Cemetery.
Mr. Cheney was a retired attorney and presided over the Superior Court here from 1884 until 1890. For many years before his retirement from practice, he had been chief counsel for the Los Angeles Gas and Electric Company.
He was an author, musician, painter and lawyer. His book, "Can We Be Sure of Mortality?" of a scientific and philosophical nature, was published several years ago. In his home, he had installed a huge pipe organ and in his declining years, spent much time with friends and music lovers. He was a great lover of art and did several oil paintings himself.
In the early days of California, Cheney was widely known as a brilliant orator, and his political campaign speeches are remembered by his associates. He was a member of the California State Senate in 1879.
He was born in Boston, Mass, and came to California in 1875, settling at first in the northern part of the State. He came to Los Angeles in 1881. He attended Wilbraham Academy in Massachusetts, but most of his education, it is said, was self-acquired.
Mr. Cheney was a member of the University Club and the Los Angeles Bar Association. He leaves a son, Harvey D. Cheney.


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  • Created by: Chloé
  • Added: Apr 19, 2011
  • Find a Grave Memorial ID:
  • Find a Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/68608234/william_atwell-cheney: accessed ), memorial page for William Atwell Cheney (18 Feb 1848–10 Aug 1925), Find a Grave Memorial ID 68608234, citing Angelus Rosedale Cemetery, Los Angeles, Los Angeles County, California, USA; Maintained by Chloé (contributor 47159257).