Born in Philadelphia to Dr. Barnabas Binney and his wife Mary Woodrow Binney, Horace was educated at Harvard, graduating in 1797. He studied law in the office of Jared Ingersoll and was admitted to the Pennsylvania bar in 1800, embarking upon a career in which he ultimately became the ackowledged leader of the Pennsylvania bar. In 1809 Binney began what became a six volume Report of Cases Adjudged in the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania, which covered cases up through 1814. Binney spent one term in the US Congress, beginning in 1833, but refused a second attempt and returned to law. Athough he semi-retired from practice in 1837, he emerged in 1844 to argue his most famous case before the US Supreme Court, Vidal et. al VS. Philadelphia, which he won against Daniel Webster. Binney was married to the former Elizabeth Cox of Trenton. He died in Philadelphia on 12 August 1875.
Binney, Charles Chauncey. The Life of Horace Binney, With Selections from his Letters. Philadelphia and London, 1905
Jackson, Joseph. Encyclopedia of Philadelphia. Harrisburg, PA, 1931, I: 292
DAB, 1943, II: 280-282
Miles, Ellen G. American Paintings of the Eighteenth Century. The Collections of the National Gallery of Art Systematic Catalogue. Washington, D.C., 1995: 219-221