[p. 58] Bigelow
He soon acquired an accurate knowledge of law and sound professional ethics, was admitted to the Middlesex Bar
in 1817, and practiced in both Medford
His intellectual endowments were well suited to the study of the law as a science.
His mind was acute, discriminating and logical, and his memory was retentive and ready.
He read much, and his legal learning was accurate and extensive.
He had a large practice, and argued cases before the Supreme Court with great ability and success; but, being a scholar, fond of books, study and retirement, and having no fondness for the turmoil and strife, the ‘pert dispute and babbling hall’ of professional practice, he never took the high rank as a lawyer which his attainments in other respects seemed to warrant.
In his professional and private life he was just and upright, his principles and practice were pure, elevated and honorable.
In 1822 he delivered the Phi Beta Kappa
oration at Cambridge
About this time his health began to fail, and the oration was delivered under much bodily weakness and suffering.
In 1830 the infirmity which had overtaken him became alarming.
He passed the summer in Europe
, but his disease—a spinal affection—never improved, and finally reduced him to the condition of a helpless invalid.
He made an unsuccessful attempt, on his return from Europe
, to resume the practice of law, but was compelled to settle down in the conviction that there was no prospect of his restoration to health.
He therefore resigned himself to the care of his family, and his patience and resignation were the triumphs of an abiding Christian.
He was particularly fond of Greek
literature and history, he reverenced Christianity, and had a firm belief in the Christian
scriptures as a divine revelation.
His manners were simple, unassuming and courteous, and his feelings were liberal, social and obliging.
He occupied various official positions in the town previous to his infirmity.
He married, July 22, 1823, Catherine, daughter of Samuel and Anna
On June 11, 1859,