slature with such modifications as had been thought advisable.
But I was determined to master every branch of my profession, for I loved civil law, and wished to have a profound knowledge of it from the twelve tables of Rome and the institutions of Justinian, to the Napoleon code.
Passing a satisfactory examination before a committee appointed by the Supreme Court, I was admitted to practice, and in 1853, I formed a partnership with Matthew Edwards, who had been my classmate at Harvard.
In 1855, when the excitement of the Know-nothing party ran high, the partnership was severed.
I was invited to deliver an address in defense of the Catholics at Armory Hall, and openly attacked the principles of the Know-nothing party.
Mr. Semmes did not tell, however, how his vigorous utterances on that occasion brought him prominently into notice in political life, and he was at once elected a member of the Democratic State Central Committee, and afterwards to the House of Representatives of th