Former Supreme Court Judge Newburger Dies at 78
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Former Supreme Court Judge Newburger Dies at 78

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Former Supreme Court Justice Joseph E. Newburger died here yesterday in his seventieth-eighth year. His death was due to heart disease, for which he had been undergoing treatment in a local hospital during the past month.

Justice Newburger was born on the East Side of New York, the son of Emanuel and Lottta Newburger. He was graduated from the Columbia Law School in 1874, was admitted to the bar the same year and practiced in New York until 1890. After joining Tammany Hall and running unsuccessfully for the assembly, he was elected to the city court in 1890. From then on he served on the bench without interruption until 1924, when he retired on reaching the 70-year old age limit.

In 1895 Judge Newburger was elected for a ten-year term as Judge of the court of general sessions, being subsequently nominated by three parties and elected Supreme Court Justice. His first term as Supreme Court justice ran until 1919.

At the conclusion of that term, Justice Newburger found himself at odds with Charles F. Murphy, then leader of Tammany Hall, which refused to give him a renomination, nominating Irwin Untermyer instead. This aroused protests from Justice Newburger’s friends, from the Bar Association and from the newspapers. He was then nominated by an independent group and by the Republicans and was re-elected Supreme Court Justice, getting 80,000 more votes than his Democratic rival.

Justice Newburger was active in Jewish philanthropic work, having served for many years as a director and later as president of the Hebrew Orphan Asylum. During his presidency the Hebrew Orphan Asylum purchased a 193-acre site at 233rd Street and Baychester Road, the Bronx, to replace the home at Amsterdam Avenue and 137th Street, which then cared for more than 1,000 children. He was also active in Masonic and Odd Fellow circles.

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