James Booth, Jr. was born in 1789 in New Castle, De. A graduate of Princeton, he was admitted to the Delaware Bar in 1812. He had a long and successful law practice and in 1841 was appointed Chief Justice of Delaware. During his tenure as Chief Justice, the case of the Hawkins family was brought before him at the New Castle Court House.
Justice Booth acted within the law but showed sympathy to the abolition cause as was evident in his decision in the matter of the Hawkins family and the petition to the Governor of Delaware regarding Samuel Burris. Justice Booth died in 1855 and is buried in Immanuel Cemetery in New Castle, DE.