Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Obituary: Albert R. Denu - Class of 1895

Albert R. Denu, circuit judge of the seventh judicial circuit, Rapid City, S. D., died Sept. 26. He had served on the circuit bench for 10 years. During his college days he taught at a Madison high school and later was instructor in oratory at the university.

Originally published in The Wisconsin alumnus, Volume 45, Number 2 (Nov. 15, 1943)

Notes: Base on the publication date of the alumni magazine, I assume Judge Denu died in 1943. His graduation date from Madison High School is based on information in the records of the Madison Board of Education. Below is some additional information about Albert R. Denu, from a biographic sketch published in 1906. The biographic sketch was posted on the Internet by the Greater Mazomanie Virtual Historical Society.

Albert R. Denu

Albert R. Denu, a young attorney of Dane county, and a member of the firm of Messerschmidt & Denu of Madison, was born in Dane county, April 9, 1877. He is a son of Philip and Albertine C. (Steffen) Denu, natives of Germany, who came to the United States in 1871, settling in Mazomanie, the same year. In 1891 the father removed to Madison and became an oil merchant, in which business he has been interested ever since. There were five children in the family, the subject of this sketch being the eldest. Emil H. is advertising manager of the State Journal, a daily paper, published in Madison. Willard R. is a druggist in Beloit. Autie L. is a member of the University of Wisconsin class of 1908. The other child died in infancy. Albert R. Denu is a graduate of the Madison high school in the class of 1895 and of the University of Wisconsin in the class of 1899, with the degree of B. L. During the scholastic year of 1899-1900 he taught in the Madison high school and then went to Washington, where he entered the law department of the Georgetown University. In 1903 he was graduated with the degree of LL. B. and the following scholastic year was an instructor in the department of oratory in the University of Wisconsin. Since that time he has been engaged in the practice of law, and has been eminently successful. The firm as it is now formed was established in January, 1906. Mr. Denu practices in all the state courts and the federal courts within the state. While a student in the high school he was a member of the debating team which defeated a similar team from the east division high school of Milwaukee. Again while a university student he was on the two winning debating teams which defeated the Universities of Iowa and Illinois. During his course at Georgetown he represented his school on the debating team which won from Columbia law school. In his senior year at the University of Wisconsin he was the winner of the final oratorical contest and represented his school in the incollegiate contest at Oberlin, Ohio. Politically he is a Republican. During the campaign of 1904 he took an active part, speaking in practically all the towns and villages of the county. He filled some of the engagements in Dane county, which Gov. R. M. La Follette was unable to meet. On numerous occasions he has delivered Fourth of July and Decoration day addresses. At the present time Mr. Denu is a candidate for the Republican nomination for district attorney of Dane county. On November 22, 1905, he was united in marriage to Miss Adeline Belsham, a native of England who came to the United States with her parents when a small child. Her parents, Christopher and Hannah M. (Grounsell) Belsham, are now residents of Madison, the father being employed as a mechanic. Mrs. Denu is a member of the Baptist church. Her husband is considered one of the rising young lawyers of the community.

--From History of Dane County, ed. Elisha W. Keyes, (Western Historical Association: Madison, 1906), pp. 229-230.

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