Friday, March 17, 2006

Edwin Joseph O'Malley (1881-1955) biography

Edwin Joseph O'Malley (August 23, 1881 - April 10, 1955) was the Commissioner of Public Markets for New York City.

Edwin was the son of Thomas Francis O'Malley (1854-1918) and Georgiana Reynolds (1855-1941) and he was born in the Bronx, New York in 1881. His father's family was from County Mayo, Ireland. He married Alma Feltner (1883-1940) around 1902 and had a single child: Walter Francis O'Malley (1903-1979), who became the owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers from 1950 to 1979. Alma's family was from southern Germany. In 1910 Edwin was living in the Bronx, New York and working as a cotton goods salesman. Around 1911 he moved the family from the Bronx to Hollis, Queens. He registered for the draft on September 12, 1918, but did not serve in World War I. He became a Democratic party "ward heeler" for Tammany Hall, and was appointed as the Commissioner of Public Markets for New York City by mayor John F. Hylan. He survived a graft scandal in 1921-1922. The Commissioner's office set the price for commodities in the city of New York before the market was allowed to regulate itself. He testified on August 18, 1922 before the Kings County, New York Grand Jury, which was investigating the mishandling of the fees paid by vendors to the Public Markets office. He died in Amityville, New York in 1955.

Selected coverage in the New York Times:
* New York Times, September 01, 1921, page 01, "O'Malley in rage quits as witness"
* New York Times, September 02, 1921, page 01, "Names Republican to put O'Malley's case before jury"
* New York Times, September 10, 1921, page 07, "O'Malley drops aid named in inquiry"
* New York Times, January 25, 1922, page 15, "Injunction violation charged to O'Malley"
* New York Times, August 17, 1922, page 27, "O'Malley halts market inquiry"
* New York Times, August 18, 1922; page 26, "O'Malley testifies in market inquiry"
* New York Times, August 19, 1922, page 20, "O'Malley will not talk"
* New York Times, August 25, 1922, page 06, "Hylan to seize O'Malley's records"
* New York Times, July 02, 1923, page 20, "O'Malley opposes port market plan"
* New York Times, October 19, 1923, page 21, "O'Malley wants larger coal quota"
* New York Times, August 25, 1924, page 30, "Buy your coal now O'Malley advises"