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About James Harry Covington
James Harry Covington, II (May 3, 1870 – February 4, 1942) was an American jurist and politician. He represented the Maryland's 1st congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1909 to 1914, and served as chief justice of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia from 1914 to 1918.
Covington was born in Easton, Maryland, and attended the Maryland Military Academy at Oxford. He entered the law department of the University of Pennsylvania at Philadelphia in 1891, attending at the same time special lectures in history, literature, and economics, and graduated in 1894.
Soon thereafter, Covington began to practice of law in Easton. He was an unsuccessful Democratic nominee for the Maryland State Senate in 1901, and served as State’s attorney for Talbot County, Maryland, from 1903 to 1908. He was elected as a Democrat to Congress in 1908 and served the 1st Congressional district of Maryland from March 4, 1909 until his resignation on September 30, 1914, to accept the position of chief justice of the Supreme Court of the District of Columbia.
Covington served as chief justice of that court from October 1, 1914, to June 1, 1918, when he resigned to practice law in Washington, D.C.. He was a professor of law at Georgetown University from 1914 to 1919, and was appointed by President Woodrow Wilson as a member of the United States Railroad Commission in January 1918. He and Edward B. Burling established the law firm of Covington & Burling on January 1, 1919. Covington died in Washington, D.C., and is interred in Spring Hill Cemetery of Easton.
Covington served as Worthy Grand Master on the Supreme Executive Committee of the Kappa Sigma Fraternity from 1892–1894.