Adolphus A. Ellis

+Page 250 - Adolphus A. Ellis. Among those who have lent dignity and distinction to the Michigan system of jurisprudence and who have had much of leadership in civic affairs and the directing of popular sentiment and action, was the late Adolphus A. Ellis, who served with marked ability as attorney-general of Michigan, who gained rank among the leading members of the Michigan bar, and who was engaged in the practice of his profession in the city of Grand Rapids at the time of his death, April 25, 1921. Mr. Ellis passed his entire life in Michigan. He was born at Vermontville, this state, and was a son of Elmer E. and Jane (Halstead) Ellis, who came from the old Empire state to Michigan in the year 1846, and who became pioneer settlers at Vermontville, Eaton county, the remainder of their lives having been passed in this state. Adolphus A. Ellis supplemented the discipline of the common schools by a course in Olivet College, at Olivet, Michigan, he having been one of the early students in that institution. After leaving college Mr. Ellis gave four years to teaching in the public schools at Muir and Grand Ledge, and in the meanwhile he gave close attention to the study of law, mainly under private preceptorship, as was then the custom. After his admission to the bar he engaged in the practice of his profession at Ionia, judicial center of the county of that name, and there he served as prosecuting attorney of the county in the period of 1885-89. He was a stalwart and prominent advocate and supporter of the principles of the Democratic party, and on the ticket of that party was elected attorney-general of Michigan in 1892. During his administration in this important office he effectively directed the disposition of many legal matters of complicated order and or maximum importance to the state, and after his retirement from office he resumed his private law practice at Ionia, of which city he served four terms as mayor. In 1906 Mr. Ellis removed with his family to Grand Rapids, and thereafter he continued as one of the honored and influential members of the Kent County bar until the time of his death, in the spring of 1921. His widow, whose maiden name was Mattie Nichols, still resides in Grand Rapids, as a gracious and revered member of the family home circle of her son, Howard A., of whom individual mention is made on another page of this volume.

Transcriber: Nancy Myer
Created: 21 April  2003