Archive | August, 2008

Two Tusculum College faculty members win grant approvals

Posted on 27 August 2008 by

The summer brought news of two recent grant approvals for initiatives at Tusculum College proposed by faculty members.

One grant relates to classroom and departmental assessment, the other to “quantitative literacy.”

Associate Professor and Chair of Biology Dr. Ian VanLare was notified that a proposal for a grant to support “Integration and Coordination of Classroom and Departmental Assessment Efforts” was approved by the Appalachian College Association (ACA) in the amount of $2,950.

The funding for the assessment-related grant comes from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation through the ACA, of which Tusculum College is a member institution.

“The purpose of this proposal is to allow us (departmental chairs of math, chemistry, and biology at Tusculum College) to bring in a consultant to work with the departments on integration of assessment at both the classroom level and the departmental level,” the grant proposal stated.

“Each year, we do much student testing and collect lots of data, and then wonder what to do with it,” the proposal went on. “We (the applicants) feel that if classroom assessment mechanisms were used to drive the construction of the departmental assessment documents, these documents could become a real aid when deciding curricular changes.”

The plan is for the chairs of the three departments to work under guidance from the consultant to “come up with and implement an assessment program for the three departments that will start with classroom assessment and extend up to departmental Intended Student Outcome (ISO) assessment (and possibly through institutional level assessment) to make informed and meaningful curricular modifications to aid our students in learning.”

Joining VanLare in making the application were Assistant Professor and Chair of Chemistry and Environmental Science Robin Tipton, and Professor and Chair of Mathematics and Physics Dr. John Paulling.

A quantitative literacy project at Tusculum College was chosen for $3,750 in funding, Tusculum College Assistant Professor of Mathematics, Physics and Geology Dr. Katherine Stone was informed late in July.

Announcement of the grant came on July 29 from Christopher Qualls, Dean of Faculty at Emory and Henry College, a college that has chosen Quantitative Literacy as its Quality Enhancement Plan focus area. Quality Enhancement Plans are required by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) of the colleges and universities they accredit. In the July 29 announcement, Qualls wrote to Stone: ”This email is to inform you that your team’s proposed quantitative literacy project has been chosen for funding in the amount of $3,750. I know that Dr. (Paul B.) Chewning, President of ACA, joins me in congratulating each member of your team. In the coming weeks, you will receive official notification of this award from the ACA and additional information about how to receive these funds.”

According to a press release on its collegiate web site, Emory & Henry itself was the recipient last fall of “a large grant” that supports that college’s efforts to incorporate quantitative literacy across its curriculum. Emory & Henry collaborated with other colleges and with the ACA in the writing of the funding proposal. Quantitative literacy has been defined as the ability to formulate, evaluate, and communicate conclusions and inferences from quantitative information and to use these skills in academic, professional, and personal contexts.

Details of exactly how the grant funds will be applied will be announced later.

Dr. Stone, who attended a conference Qualls also took part in, said the project at Tusculum College will coordinate well with Tusculum’s continuing interest in enhancing its math programs.

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Long-time Tusculum College librarian visits Garland Library, children’s book collection named in her honor

Posted on 19 August 2008 by


Cleo Treadway, Johnson City, center, visited the Thomas J. Garland Library at Tusculum College on Aug. 15. Treadway, who remains very active in community volunteer work, spent two decades as head of the library program at Tusculum, retiring in 1990. She is shown here with two of the library staff members she worked with during her time at Tusculum College: Coordinator of Library Technical Services Carolyn Parker, left, and Reference/Intructional Services Librarian Charles Tunstall.

Partially visible behind them, though obscured by the light of the camera flash, is a plaque that marks the Garland Library’s children’s book collection as the Cleo Treadway Children’s Book Collection, honoring Treadway for her many years of service to the library program. After being greeted by Interim President Russell Nichols and Library Director Myron “Jack” Smith, Mrs. Treadway was taken out to lunch by the library staff.

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Symposium at Tusculum College to explore Andrew Johnson’s impact on his era, the presidency and the Constitution

Posted on 19 August 2008 by

Leading national authorities on Andrew Johnson, the Reconstruction period and the Constitution are among those who will take part in a symposium in September at Tusculum College exploring the 17th president’s impact on his era, the presidency and the Constitution.

The Museums of Tusculum College are hosting the “Andrew Johnson: Heritage, Legacy, and Our Constitution” symposium on Thursday, Sept. 18, as part of the local celebration of the bicentennial of Johnson’s birth. The event will begin at 9 a.m. in the Chalmers Conference Center, include individual sessions by each of the experts, and conclude with a panel discussion with all of the presenters. The program is being underwritten by the Tennessee Civil War Heritage Area, the Patterson-Bartlett Corporation, and the Andrew Johnson Bicentennial Committee.

The individual sessions will help increase the understanding of Johnson, a complex man who rose from his humble beginnings as a tailor’s apprentice to serve in the highest political office in the country.

Johnson and the Reconstruction will be the topic of a session by Dr. Eric Foner, DeWitt Clinton professor of history at Columbia University. Dr. Foner is one of this country’s most prominent historians and is considered the leading contemporary historian of the post-Civil War Reconstruction period. He has written extensively on political history, the history of freedom, early history of the Republican Party, African American biography, Reconstruction, and historiography.

Among the books Dr. Foner has authored are Forever Free: The Story of Emancipation and Reconstruction and the award-winning Reconstruction: America’s Unfinished Revolution, 1863-1877. He was also co-curator of the award-winning exhibit, “America’s Reconstruction: People and Politics After the Civil War,” which opened at the Virginia Historical Society in 1995 and traveled to several other locations.

The Civil War period of Johnson’s life will be examined in a session by Dr. Paul Bergeron, professor of history emeritus at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville and was recently named a Brown Foundation Fellow and a visiting professor of history at the University of the South. Dr. Bergeron was the editor of the Papers of Andrew Johnson, a comprehensive collection of 16 volumes of material that includes correspondence, congressional records, bills, diaries, journal articles, and newspapers covering the period of 1858 through 1875. Major publications include Paths of the Past: Anti-bellum Politics in Tennessee, Presidency of James K. Polk, and Tennesseans and Their History.

Johnson’s early years will be the focus of a session by Dr. Robert Orr, a faculty member of Walters State Community College and Washington College Academy. Dr. Orr is a local authority on Johnson and has authored a book about the 17th president. The local historian was featured in a discussion of Johnson as part of the “American Presidents” series broadcast by the C-SPAN cable network.

The Constitution will be the focus of the session by Dr. Michael Kent Curtis, professor of law at Wake Forest University – School of Law. Dr. Curtis will examine the effect of Constitutional amendments in the past and today’s world.

Dr. Curtis is one of the foremost constitutional historians in the nation. He is the author of the award-winning Free Speech: The People’s Darling Privilege: Struggles for Freedom of Expression in American History, and the acclaimed No State Shall Abridge: The Fourteenth Amendment and the Bill of Rights. Dr. Curtis has also received the Frank Porter Graham Award from the North Carolina Civil Liberties Union for achievement in defending and advancing civil liberties in that state.

The symposium will conclude with a panel discussion involving all four of the noted authorities, which will be moderated by Oliver “Buzz” Thomas, executive director of the Niswonger Foundation.

Registration is required for attendance to the symposium, and there is a $10 registration fee. Deadline for registration is Sept. 5. Registration forms are included in the brochure for the symposium, which is posted on the Web site of the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library at For additional information, contact the Museums of Tusculum at (423) 636-7348 or e-mail
The Doak House Museum and the President Andrew Johnson Museum and Library are administered by the Tusculum College Department of Museum Program and Studies under the direction of George Collins, director of Museum Program and Studies, and Cindy Lucas, associate director of the department and director of the Doak House Museum. The department also offers one of the few undergraduate degree programs in museum studies in the country.

The Doak House Museum, which was the home of the Rev. Samuel Witherspoon Doak, co-founder of the college, hosted over 10,000 school children from East Tennessee last year for a variety of educational programs related to the 19th century and CHARACTER COUNTS! The Andrew Johnson Museum, located in the oldest academic building on campus, houses a collection of books, papers, and memorabilia of the 17th president of the United States. The museum also houses the Charles Coffin Collection from the original college library and the College archives containing documents related to the history of Tusculum. The museums are also two of the 10 structures on the Tusculum campus on the National Register of Historic Places.

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Tusculum welcomes new and returning students during Move-In Days

Tusculum welcomes new and returning students during Move-In Days

Posted on 08 August 2008 by

Celebrating Move-In Day

Tusculum College is celebrating the return of students to campus!

About 175 students, including members of the Pioneers football team, returned to campus on Tuesday, August 5th to move into their dorm rooms. Students taking part in the Bridge Program also moved into their rooms on August 5th. The College welcomed nearly 125 students to campus on Friday, August 8.

Move-In at Tusculum is a campus-wide event which includes staff members from nearly every department. To simplify the Move-In process, Tusculum students and their parents check in at the Pioneer Arena where representatives from each department greet them. During the Summer, the College put effort into streamlining the Move-In process so that students may receive their room keys as quickly as possible and begin moving into their dorm rooms.

View more pictures from the first two Move-In days.

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Tusculum College campus benefits from on-going beautification project

Posted on 08 August 2008 by


New flowers and plants are brightening the landscape surrounding the buildings on the Tusculum College campus. The flowers are part of an on-going beautification project for the historic campus.

Flowers have already been planted around McCormick Hall (seen in the picture above), the Thomas J. Garland Library, Virginia Hall and the Scott M. Niswonger Commons. The grounds around Katherine Hall, the Annie Hogan Byrd Fine Arts Building,the COGs and other buildings on campus will soon receive flowers, according to Mark Stokes, Director of Facilities.

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Alumnus, former trustee, and College friend Judge Thomas G. Hull ’50 passes away

Posted on 05 August 2008 by

hull.jpg(Note: The story below is based heavily on coverage published in The Greeneville Sun regarding the July 29 death of alumnus, former Tusculum College trustee, and generous College friend Thomas Gray Hull ’50. The College thanks the Sun for use of the material.)

Hundreds of family members, friends, colleagues, former employees, and fellow church members came together Friday afternoon, Aug. 1, to celebrate the life of the late Thomas Gray Hull, and reflect on his impact on their own lives.

Hull, a retired U.S. district judge who served on the federal bench at Greeneville from 1983-2006, died Tuesday morning, July 29, at 82 after several months of sharply declining health. His life was celebrated Friday, Aug. 1, at Asbury United Methodist Church, of which he was an active lifelong member. Among those present at the service was U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., a longtime friend.

Before being named to the federal bench, Hull had served as legal counsel to then-Gov. Alexander from 1979-81.
Hull’s son, Tusculum College Trustee Brandon Hull, his daughter, Leslie Hull, and retired U.S. Rep. Bill Jenkins of Rogersville, a close friend for many years, spoke at what was termed in the bulletin “A Service of Thanksgiving and Celebration.”

Also offering remarks were the Rev. Jeannie Higgins, minister of discipleship of Asbury UM Church and a cousin of Judge Hull, and the Rev. David Woody, Asbury UM senior pastor.

The late federal judge was remembered warmly and repeatedly as a Christian of strong, persevering faith in God, a man with a deep and loving commitment to his family, and a person who loved and enjoyed music and poetry and managed to include both in a busy life.There was also praise for his professional accomplishments, especially his persistent, ultimately successful efforts over a period of years to see the new James H. Quillen United States Courthouse built, in the face of major obstacles.

The new courthouse was dedicated in December 2001 at a ceremony here attended by then-U.S. Ambassador to Japan Howard H. Baker Jr., then-U.S. Senators Fred Thompson and Bill Frist, then-U.S. Rep. Jenkins, and retired U.S. Rep. Quillen, who is now deceased.

Brandon Hull recalled that, since childhood, he had always thought of his father as “larger than life.”

Though he did not speak at the memorial service, Dr. Russell Nichols, interim president of Tusculum College, issued a statement expressing sadness at Judge Hull’s death and appreciation for his contributions to the College over the years.

“Our entire Tusculum College community is deeply saddened by the loss of Judge Hull, a distinguished alumnus, emeritus trustee, community ambassador, and true friend,” Dr. Nichols wrote.

“Judge Hull’s service to his alma mater was exemplary, including about a decade on the Board of Trustees beginning in 1979.

“Included among his many honors were the Distinguished Service Award, presented on the eve of his 80th birthday, and the designation of ‘The Honorable Thomas G. Hull ’50 classroom” in the new Thomas J. Garland Library.

“We are proud that his son, Brandon, currently serves on the board to perpetuate the good work of Judge Hull for Tusculum College.”

In Jenkins’ remarks, he also emphasized Judge Hull’s accomplishments, and stressed that the former judge was definitely “the driving force behind this great courthouse.”

Jenkins added that, in his view, Judge Hull’s greatest quality was “human resilience,” a reference to the fact that, as Jenkins noted, he had persevered in his life and spirit despite the tragic losses of a son and namesake at age 12, of a daughter and her unborn child at age 32, and of his wife of 40 years, Joan Brandon Hull, in 1995.

“Tom Hull endured, and Tom Hull Kept the faith,” Jenkins said.

Remembering her father, Leslie Hull cited in her comments what she said were Judge Hull’s strong faith, his love for his family, and his love for music and poetry.
Rudyard Kipling’s famous poem, “If,” a favorite of the late federal judge, was reproduced in full on the service program.

Brandon and Leslie Hull also stressed their love and appreciation for Judge Hull’s second wife, Helge Woerz Hull, whom he married in 1999.

In Rev. Higgins’ comments, she drew on years of family association with the late judge as well as many years of association with him at Asbury Church, and Rev. Woody praised him as a person who “gave us a life that followed the law of God and the law of the land.”

Scripture passages were read by two of Judge Hull’s granddaughters, Leslie Claire Welsch and Meredith Hull.

The service Friday strongly emphasized music, including congregational singing of two familiar hymns, “Oh God, Our Help In Ages Past” and “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God”; a harp presentation by Eliizabeth Farr; and solos by Cindy Sams and Robert Bradley, including “The Old Rugged Cross” and “Peace Like A River.”

A formal military burial at GreeneLawn Memory Gardens followed the service at the church.


Numerous friends and former colleagues of the late U.S. District Judge Thomas G. Hull recalled with warmth and respect their memories of Hull, who died Tuesday morning.

Greeneville Sun Publisher John M. Jones, a longtime friend of Judge Hull and his frequent ally in civic and economic development-related projects over the years, emphasized Hull’s strong civic spirit and called his death “a loss to the community.”

“Tom Hull was a good man in every sense of the word,” Jones said. “He was an outstanding citizen of this community.

“You could always count on him to stand for what was in the best interest of Greeneville and Greene County.”

Referring to Hull’s support for local economic development prior to assuming the federal judgeship in 1983, Jones noted that “He could always be counted on to help when we had an industrial prospect or any other problem.”

Former U.S. Rep. Bill Jenkins, reached Tuesday afternoon by telephone at his farm near Rogersville, said he was saddened to hear of Judge Hull’s passing.

Jenkins, who was a state circuit judge before serving 10 years as the First District’s congressman, said he visited Hull last week in Greeneville.

“I’m certainly sorry to hear about Tom Hull’s death. He was a great friend of mine, and some of the best memories I have are of time spent with Tom Hull.”

Jenkins said Hull “was a person who made a real contribution to this state and to this country.

“He served us well as a World War II veteran, as a legislator, and a federal judge. He was an astute businessman, but I think, beyond all those things, he was a great human being.”

Jenkins went on to say, “Tom had endured a lot of sad times, in the deaths of his son, Tommy, his daughter, Amy, and his wife, Jo Ann. Through it all he demonstrated a resiliency and a faith in the Almighty that was unsurpassed.

“I certainly extend to his wife and his family my deepest sympathy.”

Howard H. Baker Jr., who served as U.S. ambassador to Japan after service as President Ronald Reagan’s chief of staff and long service as U.S. Senator from Tennessee, commented from his Huntsville, Tenn., home, where he was celebrating his wife’s birthday.

Then-U.S. Sen. Baker had nominated Hull for the federal judgeship to which he was named in 1983 by then-President Reagan.

In an e-mailed statement, Baker said, “Judge Tom Hull was not only a distinguished federal jurist, but in many ways he was the very essence of the East Tennessee pioneer spirit.
“He was straightforward, dependable, and my good friend. I shall miss him.”

U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., reached at his Washington, D.C., office, said he, too, was “sorry to hear about Judge Hull. He brings back a lot of good memories with me.”
Sen. Alexander added, “He was a great friend.”

Alexander explained that, when he was elected governor in 1978, the state had experienced a pardon and parole scandal under the previous administration that had eroded confidence in state government.

“It was an extraordinary time, and I needed to ask some men and women to make some extraordinary steps,” the former governor recalled.

Alexander actually took office early, in part because of concerns that his predecessor, then-Gov. Ray Blanton, would issue large numbers of pardons on the eve of the inauguration.
“I was looking for a way to restore confidence,” Alexander told the Sun, “so I asked Judge Hull to resign his position as circuit judge and come to work with me in the governor’s office,” as legal counsel.

At that time, Hull had served as circuit judge for the 3rd Judicial District since 1972. He resigned “at my request” in 1979, Alexander said. “He helped us get started on a straight course.” The senator said Hull had the maturity and judgment needed to help guide a very young staff, and “a lot of experience in state government.”

But most important, Alexander said, was Hull’s “reputation for integrity,” and that integrity itself, which made Hull “very popular with the legislators, and with our young staff.”

Alexander said Judge Hull “not only knew the law, he knew the legislature. He was an enormous help, not only in restoring confidence in the governor’s office, but in helping me create a successful term of office as governor.”

Alexander also recalled traveling to Washington in the early 1980s to join with then-Sen. Baker as they together “strongly made a case” for Judge Hull’s appointment as U.S. District Judge. That meeting with then-U.S. Attorney General William French Smith helped convince President Reagan to make the appointment that led to his subsequent confirmation by the U.S. Senate as a federal judge, Alexander said.

U.S. Rep. David Davis, R-1st, of Johnson City, reached by the Sun, said he mourned Hull’s passing, and provided a written comment.

“Judge Hull was a dedicated public servant known throughout East Tennessee,” Davis stated. “Judge Hull served his country during World War II, was a Tennessee State Representative, and a state and federal judge.” Davis said Hull was passionate about “everything he did, whether it was serving as Chief Clerk of the Tennessee General Assembly or as the campaign manager for James H. Quillen’s first campaign for the U. S. Congress.”

The congressman added, “A true family man and astute businessman, Judge Hull will be greatly missed in East Tennessee. My thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends.” Also among those who commented on the passing of Judge Hull was Circuit Judge Tom Wright, who worked as Hull’s law clerk in the 1980s.

“He was absolutely my mentor,” Judge Wright said of Judge Hull. “I’m deeply saddened by the loss because he meant so much to me and my family.”

Wright described Hull as “the most influential person professionally” in his life.

“He was probably the most influential person, after my mother and father, personally as well,” Judge Wright said. “I would not be where I am (today) without Judge Hull.”

Judge Wright recalled that, in 1985, Judge Hull had given him his first job in the legal profession, as his law clerk.

Wright noted that at one point, because of retirements and illnesses among the federal judges in the Eastern District of Tennessee, Judge Hull was practically the only judge working in the district.

After working for a year-and-a-half as Judge Hull’s law clerk, Wright said, he moved to Chattanooga and practiced law for six years.

“I already knew the (federal) judges there because of Judge Hull,” he recalled. “I can’t tell you how many doors Tom Hull opened for me.”

Judge Wright subsequently returned to Greeneville, where he worked for Federal Defender Services.

After being elected General Sessions and Juvenile Court Judge here, Wright said, he tried to use things he learned from Judge Hull about how to run court. “I certainly learned something about how to administer a docket and run court.”

He described Judge Hull as being “very efficient” in operating his court. “He was very insistent on professionalism,” Judge Wright said.

Reached Tuesday afternoon, Greeneville business leader Kent Bewley said of Judge Hull, “He was a good man.”

“He was good to his family, good to his church, and good to the community. He made a very strong contribution to this community. He will be missed.”

Bewley noted that his late father, Roswell Bewley, and Hull had been close friends and business partners for many years. In addition, he said, the Hull and Bewley families had attended Asbury United Methodist Church together for many years.

Bewley recalled that he had known Judge Hull for about five decades.

“Both our families also have been longtime supporters of Holston United Methodist Home for Children,” Bewley said.

“Judge Hull had a major impact on this community,” he added, “and he will be missed.”

Terry Leonard, president of Leonard Associates LLC and a longtime friend and fellow church member of Judge Hull, recalled on Tuesday afternoon that he and Hull had worked and worshiped together for many years.

“He was a great citizen of Greeneville,” Leonard said. “It’s a big loss for us.”

Leonard said Judge Hull had played a major role over the years, often behind the scenes, in leading economic development activities here. “We worked together quite a bit on economic development matters,” Leonard said.

He recalled that he and Judge Hull had “had lunch almost every Thursday” for many years. “He was always a lot of fun,” Leonard said.

Judge Hull, Leonard said, “almost never missed a Sunday” at Asbury United Methodist Church in Greeneville. “We worked on a lot of church projects together over the years.”

Former Greeneville Mayor G. Thomas Love said he and Judge Hull were close friends for many years.

Love said that, when he was mayor, he could always count on Hull for advice.

“He gave me a lot of good advice when he was in Gov. Alexander’s cabinet in Nashville, and I was the mayor,” Love said.

He added, “Judge Hull was a good Christian family man who served us well in this county and will certainly be missed.”

Love, a fellow member of Asbury United Methodist Church, also noted, “He always helped Holston United Methodist Home for Children and was a dedicated member of his church.”

Rick Tipton, division manager for the Northeastern Division of U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee,recalled on Tuesday that he had spent 14 years as Judge Hull’s courtroom deputy before assuming his current position.

“He was a great man,” Tipton said of Hull.

“He taught me a lot that has helped me in my new job as division manger. This is tough for me because I spent a lot of time with him.”

U.S. Magistrate Judge Dennis Inman, who served with Hull in U.S. District Court here from 1995 until Hull’s retirement in 2006, said the former judge had “a terrific influence” on his life. Inman recalled that, when he became a trial lawyer in 1971, he tried some of his first cases in front of Hull, who was then a state Circuit Judge in the Third Judicial District of Tennessee. “He had a definite effect on how I look at the law and how I tried lawsuits,” Inman recalled.

Inman said that, later, Hull was the one who recommended to U.S. Sen. Alexander that Inman be appointed as Chancellor of the Third Judicial District.

Moreover, Inman said, there is no doubt that Hull was responsible for his being named federal Magistrate.

“There’s a whole lot of people that owe him a great deal, not the least of which is me,” Inman said.

Inman also gave Hull the credit for the fact that the James H. Quillen United States Courthouse was built in Greeneville, calling the new courthouse “The House That Hull Built” through much persistence.

“He was a remarkable man,” Inman summed up.

U.S. District Judge Ronnie Greer, who succeeded Hull, recalled their 35-year friendship while serving in state government and practicing law together.

Greer said in an interview Tuesday that he had feelings of both sadness and pride.

“I’m very sad, as is, I think, the entire court community,” Greer said.

“While I’m very sad at his passing, I’m also very proud of the record Tom leaves behind.

“He devoted his entire life to serving this community, his state, and his country,” Greer said.

“He certainly made an impact on this court that really can’t be measured,” Greer said.

In addition to former Judge Hull’s efforts to have a new federal courthouse built in Greeneville, Hull also instituted a number of practices in U.S. District Court here that made the process of resolving cases more efficient and just, Greer said.

“I’ll always be grateful for Tom Hull, for his friendship and for the support and assistance he gave me down through the years.”

Senior U.S. District Judge R. Alan Edgar, of Chattanooga, said by telephone from Michigan on Tuesday afternoon that he was saddened to learn of Judge Hull’s death.

He noted that he had known Judge Hull as a jurist since 1984. Both Judge Edgar and Judge Hull served terms as chief judge of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee.

“I was proud to have served with him,” Judge Edgar said, describing Judge Hull as “a self-made man who loved the people of Upper East Tennessee.”

Judge Edgar said Judge Hull had been an effective jurist. “He had a sense of what justice is,” Judge Edgar said.

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