James Alfred Bardin, for nearly ten years judge of the superior court of Monterey county and for twenty years a member of the bar, practicing at Salinas and one of the best known lawyers in this section of California, is a native son of Monterey county and has been a resident of this county all his life with the exception of the period spent in finishing his college work in the east and a year thereafter spent in newspaper work there. Judge Bardin was born on a farm in the immediate vicinity of Salinas, December 27, 1873, and is a son of Jesse and Jeannette (Cockrill) Bardin, both members of pioneer families of California. His paternal grandfather had come here from Mississippi in 1856. Jesse Bardin became a substantial farmer and landowner in the Salinas neighborhood and was actively engaged in farming until his retirement and removal to Salinas, where he and his wife are now living.
Reared on the home farm in the vicinity of Salinas, James A. Bardin completed his early education in the Salinas high school and early decided to enter the legal profession. After a course of two years of preparatory study at the University of California he entered the law school of the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor and in 1899 was graduated from that institution with the degree LL. B. He was admitted to practice in Michigan and for a year after leaving college was engaged in newspaper work in that state, gaining thus a variety of experience that in many ways proved of value in his later professional career. In 1901 Judge Bardin returned to his home at Salinas and there became engaged in the practice of law. In 1906 he was elected to the office of district attorney and in that capacity rendered four years of public service. He declined to stand for reelection to this office, preferring private practice, and was thus engaged in practice at Salinas until in 1914, when he was elected to the bench of the superior court of Monterey county. By reelection Judge Bardin continued on the bench for nearly ten years and upon his retirement resumed his private practice and is thus now engaged at Salinas, one of the best known lawyers in this section of California.
In 1904, at Salinas, Judge Bardin was united in marriage to Miss Mila J. Hills, who also was born in California, at San Jose, a daughter of Edwin M. Hills, one of the pioneers of that place, and they have three children, two sons, Daniel G. and Roy E. Bardin, and a daughter, Miss Mila Jane Bardin.
Judge and Mrs. Bardin are democrats and have ever given their earnest attention to the general civic affairs of the community. They have a pleasant home and have for years been interested and helpful factors in the development of the general social and cultural activities of the city in which they live. The Judge is a Mason and is also affiliated with the Benevolent Protective Order of Elks.
Source: History of Monterey and Santa Cruz Counties, California : cradle of California’s history and romance : dating from the planting of the cross of Christendom upon the shores of Monterey Bay by Fr. Junipero Serra, and those intrepid adventurers who accompanied him, down to the present day. Chicago: S.J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1925.