John Altman

From Bhamwiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search
John Altman in 1904

John Jasper Altman (born August 17, 1851 in Sumter County; died January 21, 1905 in Birmingham) was an attorney, chancellor, mayor of Livingston, and member of the Birmingham Board of Aldermen and Alabama House of Representatives.

Altman was the son of John Wilson Altman, who settled in Sumter County in 1836, and the former Sarah Hitt, whom he married there. John J. attended the county schools and proceeded directly to teaching in the same schools while he saved to further his studies. He entered Cooper's Institute near Daleville, Mississippi, then proceeded to study at Spring Hill College; Starkville, Mississippi and the University of Virginia, graduating in 1871 with a bachelor of law degree. Hewas admitted to the state bar in September of that year and began his legal practice in Butler, Choctaw County in the office of Thomas Cobbs.

In 1875 he relocated to Livingston and entered a partnership with Samuel H. Sprott which was dissolved in 1883 when Sprott was appointed a District Court judge. During that time he married Cora Lockard of Livingston, with whom he eventually had three children. Altman served as Mayor of Livingston from 1880 until 1886 and was a presidential elector in the 1884 election. He subsequently moved to Birmingham and partnered with J. R. McIntosh in the firm of McIntosh & Altman with offices in the Hewlett Block.

Altman left McIntosh in 1889 and partnered with former Jasper attorney John McQueen. The in 1893 he formed a partnership with W. D. Bulger which survived until Bulger's death. In 1896 Altman served in the Alabama Legislature through one session. That same year he was elected to the first of several terms on the Birmingham Board of Aldermen, representing the 6th Ward. He was appointed to sit on the Northwestern Chancery Division of Alabama in 1904 and held both public offices until his death in 1905.

He was survived by his wife and children. His son John W. was also his law partner after 1904.


  • Dubose, Joel Campbell (1904) Notable men of Alabama: Personal and Genealogical 2 Volumes. Atlanta, Georgia: Southern Historical Association
  • Owen, Thomas McAdory and Marie Bankhead Owen (1921) History of Alabama and Dictionary of Alabama Biography. 4 volumes. Chicago, Illinois: S. J. Clarke Publishing Co.