Justice Bloodgood*, we understand, further illustrated his notions of justice and the proper dignity of the bench, by interlarding his official charges and maledictions with the most profane and vulgar oaths. While thus fulminating the anathemas of justice from the bench, he had on the table before him a pair of enormous pistols, which he frequently flourished in illustration of his discourse. Justice of old carried a sword; but modern Justice arms himself with pistols, which Mr. Recorder Riker thinks a very proper sort of weapon for private citizens to carry, and of course much more so for a justice on the bench. Mr. Justice Bloodgood, among many other similar ferocities of speech, frequently expressed his regret that he had neglected to take his percussion caps with him into the Park, as he should have liked no better sport than to shoot a half dozen of the damned niggers. “Damn their souls!–” mildly and modestly exclaimed the white-robed Justice, the heroick Justice!–”damn their souls! I should have liked to send a few of the damned niggers to hell!” This account we have from a source that may be relied upon.
Oh justice! thou hast fled to brutish beasts.
[The Plaindealer, No. 1. SATURDAY, DECEMBER 3, 1836. Vol. I. Pg. 314]
* – Justice John M. Bloodgood was a magistrate of the New York City Police Court at 602 Broadway. His racism perhaps had stemmed from having been previously attacked by a black man and woman. And this while he was attempting to assist a sheriff. (Although this by no means offers any excuse or justification for such rabid racism).