John W. Wofford, Judge of the Criminal Court of
Jackson County, was born August 14, 1837, in the State of
Georgia. He served in the House and Senate of Georgia, and was
presidential elector in 1876. He fought in the Confederate army
from the beginning to the end of the war. He was appointed Judge
of the Jackson County Criminal Court in July, 1892, by Governor
Francis, and was elected to that position in November, 1892, and
re-elected in 1898.
Judge Wofford is one of the unique figures in
Kansas City. He is like no one else. A just and inflexible
judge, strict in his construction and enforcement of the law, feared
and respected by attorneys, he is yet as tender-hearted as a child in
his treatment of criminals. He has inaugurated a system of
paroling convicted criminals, which puts them on their honor,
releasing them during good behavior, which has done more to reform
them than all the prisons in Christendom could do.
Some of the most celebrated murder cases in
the history of Missouri have been tried by Judge Wofford.
So just and careful are his rulings that it
is seldom, indeed, the Supreme Court has found occasion to reverse