THE significance of a biography, like the life of the person described, is affected by time and circumstance. Some biographies are too long delayed, some are premature. This life of Judge Seabury comes just in time. Just in time because the written record can still be tested and tempered by the evidence of living witnesses, witnesses whose recollections and judgments have been refined by long reflection. And it is in time for another, perhaps more important, reason: It is a reminder that the life of a lawyer can be a great life--a life shaped by challenge and charged with excitement, a life of purpose and influence in the mainstream of social and political movements. It is a reminder, a necessary one, that a great career in the law need not be founded on convention and conformity, that even on the peaks there is room for a crusading reformer. The life of Samuel Seabury is a ringing response to the remark that the lawyer lives well, dies poor, and is little remembered; today, every day, in every community, the law is an open profession, open to great minds and great aspirations, to great experience and great rewards.
So it was decided by the trustees of The William Nelson Cromwell Foundation--all lawyers--that the life of Judge Seabury should be written. Here again, time and circumstance joined to affect the