Philemon Dickerson

Philemon Dickerson

Title: District Court
Appointed by: Martin Van Buren
Judicial Tenure: 1841 - 1862
Born: January 11, 1788
Birth Place: Morris County, NJ
Died: December 10, 1862
Place of Death: Paterson, NJ

Philemon Dickerson was the brother of Mahlon Dickerson and the father of famous patent attorney Edward Nicholl Dickerson who had defended Samuel Colt and Charles Goodyear in their patent-infringement suits.

A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (1808), Dickerson practiced law in Paterson, New Jersey. He served in the New Jersey General Assembly. In 1832, Dickerson was elected to the House of Representatives on the Democratic-Republican Party ticket. He served in Congress until he resigned during his second term to accept an appointment from the legislature to be Governor of New Jersey.

Dickerson won an election to Congress again in 1838, this time as a Democrat. He lost his reelection bid in 1840 and went on to serve as judge in the District Court for the District of New Jersey, a post he held until his death in 1862. Dickerson is buried at Cedar Lawn Cemetery in Paterson, New Jersey.

Professional Career

  • Private practice, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, 1813-1816
  • Private practice, Paterson, New Jersey, 1816-1821, 1822-1833, 1837-1839
  • State assemblyman, New Jersey, 1821-1822
  • U.S. representative from New Jersey, 1833-1836, 1839-1841
  • Governor, New Jersey, 1836-1837


  • University of Pennsylvania, A.B., 1808
  • Read law, 1813

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