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THE OLD MEMBERS OF THE CALHOUN AND KALAMAZOO COUNTY BARS

BY A. D. P. VAN BUREN

The old veteran lawyer and politician, were he inclined to use the pen, could give many valuable and interesting reminiscences of his forensic and political contests during the forty five years of his professional career in Michigan. He is a fully equipped lawyer, strong both before court and jury.
JOHN VAN ARMAN
John Van Arman came when a youth from the Hudson river country, near Plattsburg, N. Y., to Marshall, Michigan. He had attended, for some time, an academy in his native town. He was of a mixed German and French descent, and inherited the logic of the one nationality with the versatility and enthusiasm of the other. His command of language was copious; his delivery fluent and impassioned and often both persuasive and eloquent. His skill in the use pf words was remarkable. He could "drive a substantive and six" in a style that turned rhetoric into trenchant logic. At the bar and on the rostrum he exhibited alike a wonderful power of irony and withering sarcasm. His bitterness of invective was often unsparingly used in those hand to hand fights with opposing counsel, or toward an obdurate witness at the bar, or a political opponent at the hustings. This severity of expression sometimes detracted from his public efforts. He was fully equipped for a legal or political contest. There was no weapon known in forensic strife, or in political battle, that was lacking in his "repertory of debate. " Adroit, tactful, cool and self poised, a keen and skillful debater, ready for the "occasion sudden, " he was sure to command the eager attention and admiration of his audience. He had almost absolute sway over a popular assembly.

Michigan


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