Historical and Educational Information
United States District Court for the District of Rhode Island


Edward W. Day of Cranston became the 15th judge in the 165-year history of the U. S. District Court for Rhode Island Monday in a ceremony before 300 spectators who jammed their way into the Providence court room. Judge Day, 52 and for 25 years an active member of the R. I. bar, repeated the oath as administered by Judge John P. Hartigan of the Circuit Court of Appeals. His appointment by President Eisenhower puts the first Republican on the federal district court bench here since the late Judge Ira Lloyd Letts resigned in 1935. The appointment is an interim one, filling the vacancy caused by the death last July of Judge Edward L. Leahy. Judge Day's confirmation by the U. S. Senate for permanent appointment is expected soon after Congress convenes in January. Judge Day's commission was presented to Judge Hartigan by U. S. Atty. Jacob S. Temkin and was read by Court Clerk Neale D. Murphy. He was then sworn in and escorted to his seat on the bench by U. S. Marshal Howard S. Proctor. Tributes were paid him by Henry J. Blais, president of the R. I. Bar Association who said the appointment received the universal approval of the bar and the public and by Judge Hartigan who brought the greetings of the federal appeals court and the State Supreme Court which was in session and unable to send a representative. Seated in the courtroom were Presiding Judge G. Frederick Frost and Associate Judge Harold A. Andrews of the Superior Court; Chief Judge Robert E. Quinn of the U. S. Military Court of Appeals; Judge John M. Booth of the R. I. Juvenile Court; Governor Roberts, former Governor William S. Flynn; Charles H. Eden, Republican state chairman; Thomas J. Paolino, Republican national committeeman, both of whom were aspirants for the judgeship: Mrs. Marion F. Yatman, Republican committeewoman who have supported Judge Day for the appointment, and many other public officials and party leaders. Assisting Judge Day at a reception later in U.S. court library were his wife and three daughters, Martha Ann, Madeline and Mrs. Walter E. Schortmann. A son Edward W. Jr., is in the Navy and was unable to be present. Judge Day said afterwards he had made no decisions yet on or about the 13 appointments which he has the power to make, among them the clerk of the court, the probation officer, referee in bankruptcy and U. S. Commissioners. All incumbents are Democratic holdovers but they serve at the pleasure of the judge.