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Ruffin, Thomas

Thomas Ruffin (1787-1870) graduated from the College of New Jersey (Princeton) in 1805, studied law under Archibald D. Murphey, and began a law practice in Hillsborough, NC, in 1808. He was elected a superior court judge in 1816 and became an associate justice of the NC supreme court in 1829. He served as chief justice from 1833 to 1852 and from 1858 to 1859. University presidents Joseph Caldwell and David Swain frequently sought Ruffin's advice, and Ruffin served on the board of trustees from 1813 to 1831 and 1842 to 1868.