Swann was elected as a Democrat to the 57th United States Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Amos J. Cummings and served from December 1, 1902, to March 3, 1903. Afterwards he resumed the practice of law in New York City. In November 1904, Swann ran again for Congress, this time in the 13th District, but was defeated by Republican Herbert Parsons.
In November 1907, Swann was elected a judge of the Court of General Sessions, and took office on January 1, 1908. He was New York County District Attorney from 1916 to 1921, elected in a special election in November 1915 defeating the incumbent Charles A. Perkins, and re-elected in November 1917 to a full term. Swann was accused several times by reform organizations of misconduct and malfeasance in office, urging his removal. Since the precedent of 1900, when Asa Bird Gardiner was removed by Gov. Theodore Roosevelt, this had become a constant move in New York City politics, but neither Republican Charles S. Whitman nor Democrat Al Smith saw reason enough to act.
In November 1920, Swann ran for the New York Supreme Court (1st D.), nominated by the Tammany bosses to get rid of him in the D.A.'s office. After his defeat, Tammany insisted in trying to get him appointed to a vacancy in General Sessions, but Gov. Al Smith did not yield. However, for most of the year 1921, Swann remained out-of-state, partly in Florida, partly in Missouri, and left the office in the hands of his Chief Assistant D.A. Joab H. Banton.
- Edward Swann at the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress
- OLD 10th CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT CONVENTIONS in NYT on October 4, 1902
- FOUR NEW NAMES ON THE CONGRESS TICKET in NYT on October 4, 1904
- TAMMANY WINS in NYT on November 6, 1907
- JUDGE DELEHANTY ACCUSES SWANN OF FRAUD ON COURT in NYT on December 31, 1916
- CITY CLUB RENEWS ATTACKS ON SWANN in NYT on April 5, 1917
- TAMMANY FINISHES SLATE FOR THIS FALL in NYT on August 17, 1917
- TAMMANY PICKS SWANN FOR BENCH in NYT on August 10, 1920
- TAMMANY WANTS SWANN ON BENCH in NYT on December 24, 1920
- EDWARD SWANN WEDS IN MISSOURI in NYT on May 22, 1921
- EDWARD SWANN, 83, EX-JUDGE, IS DEAD in NYT on September 21, 1945 (subscription required)
|United States House of Representatives|
Amos J. Cummings
|Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New York's 10th congressional district
1902 - 1903
Charles A. Perkins
|New York County District Attorney
1916 - 1921
Joab H. Banton