Joseph V. Quarles

Joseph Very Quarles Jr. (December 16, 1843 – October 7, 1911) was a United States Senator from Wisconsin and a United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Wisconsin. Earlier, he was the 20th Mayor of Kenosha, Wisconsin.

The Honorable

Joseph V. Quarles
Judge Joseph V. Quarles.png
Judge of the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
In office
March 6, 1905 – October 7, 1911
Appointed byTheodore Roosevelt
Preceded byWilliam Henry Seaman
Succeeded byFerdinand August Geiger
United States Senator
from Wisconsin
In office
March 4, 1899 – March 3, 1905
Preceded byJohn L. Mitchell
Succeeded byRobert M. La Follette
20th Mayor of Kenosha, Wisconsin
In office
April 1876 – April 1877
Preceded byOtis G. King
Succeeded byAsahel Farr
Personal details
Joseph Very Quarles, Jr.

(1843-12-16)December 16, 1843
Southport, Wisconsin Territory
DiedOctober 7, 1911(1911-10-07) (aged 67)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Resting placeCity Cemetery
Kenosha, Wisconsin
Political partyRepublican
  • Caroline Adelaide Saunders
  • (died 1918)
  • William Charles Quarles
  • (b. 1870; died 1939)
  • Joseph Very Quarles
  • (b. 1874; died 1946)
  • Edward Louis Quarles
  • (b. 1876; died 1941)
MotherCaroline (Bullen) Quarles
FatherJoseph V. Quarles
EducationUniversity of Michigan (A.B.)
University of Michigan Law School (LL.B.)
Professionlawyer, judge
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Army
Union Army
Years of service1864–1865
RankUnion army 1st lt rank insignia.jpg 1st Lieutenant
Unit39th Reg. Wis. Vol. Infantry
Battles/warsAmerican Civil War

Education and careerEdit

Born on December 16, 1843, in Kenosha (then Southport), Wisconsin Territory (State of Wisconsin from May 29, 1848),[1] Quarles attended the common schools, then received an Artium Baccalaureus degree in 1866 from the University of Michigan and a Bachelor of Laws in 1867 from the University of Michigan Law School.[1] During the American Civil War, Quarles served in the Union Army in the Thirty-ninth Regiment, Wisconsin Volunteers, and was mustered out as first lieutenant.[2] He was admitted to the bar and entered private practice in Kenosha from 1868 to 1882.[1] He was the district attorney for Kenosha County, Wisconsin from 1870 to 1876.[1] He was the Mayor of Kenosha in 1876.[1] He was a member of the Wisconsin State Assembly in 1879.[1] He was a member of the Wisconsin State Senate from 1880 to 1882.[1] He resumed private practice in Racine, Wisconsin from 1882 to 1888, and in Milwaukee, Wisconsin from 1888 to 1899.[1]

Congressional serviceEdit

Quarles was elected as a Republican to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1899, to March 3, 1905.[2] He was not a candidate for reelection in 1905.[2] He was Chairman of the Committee on Transportation Routes to the Seaboard for the 56th United States Congress and Chairman of the Committee on the Census for the 57th and 58th United States Congresses.[2]

Federal judicial serviceEdit

Quarles was nominated by President Theodore Roosevelt on March 6, 1905, to a seat on the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin vacated by Judge William Henry Seaman.[1] He was confirmed by the United States Senate on March 6, 1905, and received his commission the same day.[1] His service terminated on October 7, 1911,[1] due to his death in Milwaukee.[2] He was interred in the City Cemetery in Kenosha.[2]


Quarles had one brother, Charles, who would become his law partner.[3]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k Joseph Very Quarles at the Biographical Directory of Federal Judges, a public domain publication of the Federal Judicial Center.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Joseph Very Quarles". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.
  3. ^ Bruce, William George; Currey, J. Seymour (Josiah Seymour) (April 3, 2019). "History of Milwaukee, city and county". Chicago : S. J. Clarke Publishing Co. – via Internet Archive.


External linksEdit

U.S. Senate
Preceded by
John L. Mitchell
U.S. senator (Class 1) from Wisconsin
1899 – 1905
Served alongside: John Coit Spooner
Succeeded by
Robert M. La Follette
Political offices
Preceded by
Otis G. King
Mayor of Kenosha, Wisconsin
1876 – 1877
Succeeded by
Asahel Farr
Legal offices
Preceded by
William Henry Seaman
United States District Judge for the Eastern District of Wisconsin
1905 – 1911
Succeeded by
Ferdinand August Geiger