Collection Summary

Creator: Sutton, David Nelson
Title: The Papers of David Nelson Sutton
Accession: MSS 04-3
Description: 2 boxes; .5 linear feet
Location: Special Collections
Photograph Collection: View 0 digitized photographs
Digitized Content: 0 objects
Use Restrictions: There are no restrictions.

Collection Description & Arrangement

The David Nelson Sutton Papers are comprised of 2 grey boxes (.5 linear feet).  They consist of handwritten notes taken while attending the University of Virginia Department of Law and some printed materials that relate to his classes.  There are two folders that document his nomination to the presidency of the Virginia State Bar Association in 1948 and his nomination as a member of the House of Delegates at the 75th meeting of the American Bar Association in 1953.


Biographical & Historical Information

David Nelson Sutton was born on July 14, 1895 in Stevensville, King and Queen County, Virginia.  He received his A B. degree from Richmond College (now University of Richmond).  He was a student at the Department of Law between 1919-1920. [Alumni records state that he graduated in 1920 an others 1921.  Spec. Coll. thinks that the 1920 date is more accurate.]

He participated in WWI, first enlisted as a private and later commissioned in the regular army.  He resigned his commission as 1st. Lt. Cavalry, Regular Army to enter the University of Virginia in 1919.  He was admitted to the Virginia Bar in 1920. 

Mr. Sutton practiced law in West Point, Va. He was director and general counsel of the Citizens & Farmers Bank, attorney for the Commonwealth for King William County, Virginia (1928-1946.  

He was “governor” of the Kiwanis International (1940); president of the Virginia State Convention of the Disciples of Christ (1942); vice-president of the International Convention of the Disciples of Christ.  He was on the Board of Trustees of Lynchburg College, University of Richmond and Lexington Theological Seminary.  Member of the Institute of Judicial Administration; member of the American Bar Association.

In 1936, 1940 and 1944, he participate as delegate to the Democratic Conventions.  From 1946-1948 he was associate counsel for the International Military Tribunal for the Far East, Tokio, Japan in the trial of General Tojo and other important  Japanese political leaders.

Mr. Sutton was president of the Virginia State Bar Association from 1948-1949.  He was member of the Virginia State Bar, 1945 -1954 where he was chairman of the commission on continuing legal education (1949-1952). Also he was  fellow of the American Bar Foundation, member of the American College of Trial Lawyers,  the Society of International Law, the Academy of Political Science?, American Judicatore Society, Raven Society of the University of Virginia. 

He was president of the Alumni Association of the University of Richmond, and of Phi Beta Kappa, Delta Sigma Rho, Sigma Upsilon.

Mr. Sutton died at his home in West Point, Va. on November 21, 1974.

Acquisition Information

Date Received 2004
Donor Information This collection was donated to the Law School by Frances Sutton Oliver, the daughter of David Nelson Sutton, in September of 2004.

Content List

Box 1:

  • 1919, March - May; Bailments and Carriers Notes.
  • 1909-1916; Common Law Pleading.   Examinations
  • 1919; Common Law Pleading.  Tuesday Answers. Handwritten notes.
  • 1905-1916; Constitutional Law.  Examinations.  Signed: Clarence B. Pearce [Class of 1920]
  • 1919, Jan. - Mar.; Contracts Notes.  First term
  • 1919-1920; Corporations Notebook.
  • 1919; Criminal Law Notes.
  • 1919; Equity Notebook.
  • 1911-1919; Equity Jurisprudence.   Examinations.
  • 1919-1920; Examinations: Real Property I, Criminal Law, Legal Bibliography and Briefmaking, Domestic Relations, Agency, Bailments and Carriers, Constitutional Law, Virginia Pleading.
  • 1919, Apr. 12; Founder’s day Exercises Program
  • 1919; Government Ownership of R. R. [Railroads].  Notes Annotated Printed Materials, Newspapers Clippings. (4 folders)
  • 1919; Government Ownership of R. R.  University of Virginia Record Extension Series.  The Virginia High School Literary and Athletic League.  (See pages 40-43)

Box 2:

  • 1909-1919; Legal Bibliography and Briefmaking.  Examinations
  • [ca. 1919]; Minor Chapter of the Phi Delta Phi Fraternity of the University of Virginia School of Law.  Annual Appeal in One Writ of Error .  Program.
  • 1919, 1920, 1925; Miscellaneous University of Virginia Printed Materials: Mischa Elman Tickets, The Gavel, College Topics “The Continental Congress. A Practice Pageant”, Brochure.
  • 1919; Sales.  Notebook
  • 1919; Summer School Pageant Drama: “Shores of Happiness.  A Pageant Whereof Odysseus is Hero”.  Script of the play and flier.
  • 1919; Torts.  Chase’s Cases on Torts.
  • n.d.; Virginia Inheritance Tax Bill and Notes on Comparative Inheritance Tax Laws.
  • 1920; Virginia Pleading.  Tuesday Answers.
  • 1917; Y.M.C.A. Directory of Students and Professors at the University of Virginia.
  • 1953-1955; ABA [American Bar Association].  Sutton as Virginia Member of the House of Delegates of the ABA.  Correspondence and newspaper clippings.
  • 1948, 1953; ABA and Virginia State Bar Nomination - Newspaper Clippings 
  • 1919; Drake vs. Bell. Brief of Daniel N. Sutton, for the Defendant.
  • 1948; Virginia State Bar Association Nomination fo David Nelson Sutton as President.  Letters of Congratulations.  Newspaper Clippings.

Associated People

Use Policy

Access There are no restrictions.
Use Restrictions There are no restrictions.
Preferred Citation

Papers of David Nelson Sutton, MSS 04-3, Box Number, Special Collections, University of Virginia Law School Library

Unless otherwise stated, digital materials in our collections are available for use under a Creative Commons BY 4.0 License (CC-BY-4.0). For Use and Citation guidelines, see Special Collections Use Policy.