List of mayors of Chelsea, Massachusetts

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The Mayor of Chelsea was the head of the municipal government in Chelsea, Massachusetts. Except for June 4, 1908 – 1912 when in the aftermath of the first Great Chelsea Fire it was administered by the Board of Control, Chelsea had a mayoral form of government from 1857 to 1991, a total period of 131 years.

There was no Mayor of Chelsea until 1857 because up to that point Chelsea was still incorporated as a town and it was run by a Town Meeting and Board of Selectmen form of government.

There has not been a Mayor of Chelsea since 1991. Due to a worsening fiscal crisis, the Massachusetts Legislature placed Chelsea in receivership in September 1991. James F. Carlin was appointed receiver from 1991–1996. In August 1995, a new City Charter was enacted. The new Charter placed policy and legislative authority in an eleven member City Council and vested strong executive and administrative powers in an appointed City Manager. The City Manager is the chief executive of the City and is responsible for the day-to-day administration of City affairs.


This is a list of the Mayors of Chelsea, Massachusetts.

# Mayor Picture Term Party Notes
1st Francis B. Fay Francis B. Fay.png 1857 – January 4, 1858 Whig
2nd Hosea Ilsley January 4, 1858 – 1860
3rd Frank B. Fay Frank B. Fay.png 1861 – January 4, 1864 Republican
4th Eustace C. Fitz Eustace C. Fitz.png January 4, 1864 – 1866 None
5th Rufus S. Frost Rufus S. Frost.png 1867 – 1868 Republican
6th James B. Forsyth 1869 – 1870
7th John W. Fletcher 1871 – 1872
8th Charles H. Ferson 1873 – 1875
9th Thomas Green Mayor Thomas Green of Chelsea Mass.png 1876 – 1877
10th Isaac Stebbins 1877 – 1879
11th Andrew J. Bacon 1879 – 1881
12th Samuel P. Tenney Samuel P. Tenney.png 1881 – 1883
13th Thomas Strahan Thomas Strahan.png 1883 – 1884 Republican
14th Eugene F. Endicott Eugene F. Endicott.png 1885 – 1886 Republican
15th George E. Mitchell George Edwin Mitchell.png 1887 – 1888 Republican
16th Arthur B. Champlin Arthur B. Champlin.png 1888 – 1889 Republican
17th Albert D. Bosson Albert D. Bosson.png 1891 Democratic
18th Alfred C. Converse Alfred C. Converse.png 1892 – 1893 Republican
19th George H. Carter George H. Carter.png 1894 – 1895 Republican Elected as a Republican in 1894, and in 1895 he was reelected having been nominated on the Republican and Citizens Party tickets.
20th John C. Loud 1896
21st Hermon W. Pratt Hermon W. Pratt.png 1897 Republican
22nd Seth J. Littlefield Seth J. Littlefield.png 1898 – 1899 Republican
23rd James Gould James Gould Chelsea Mass Mayor.png 1900 – 1901
24th Edward E. Willard Edward E. Wlliard.png 1902 – 1907 Republican
25th John E. Beck John Edward Beck (Massachusetts mayor).png 1908 – June 4, 1908 Republican
Board of Control William B. McClintock, Alton E. Briggs

George H. Dunham of Chelsea,
A. C. Ratshesky of Boston,
and Mark Wilmarth of Maiden.

June 4, 1908 – 1912 The Board of Control was appointed by the Governor to work to rebuild Chelsea after the Great Chelsea fire of 1908. The Board began its administration on June 4, 1908. With its coming into being the Mayor, Aldermen and School Committee went out of office.
26th James H. Malone 1912
27th Edward E. Willard Edward E. Wlliard.png 1913 – 1914 Republican
28th James H. Malone 1915 – 1916
29th Edward E. Willard Edward E. Wlliard.png 1917 – 1918 Republican
30th Melvin B. Breath Melvin Bernard Breath (March 28, 1881 – July 1, 1950).png 1919 – 1921 Democratic
31st Lawrence F. Quigley Lawrence F. Quigley.png 1922 – 1926 Democratic
32nd John J. Whalen 1927 Democratic This was the last of the one year mayoral terms.
33rd Lawrence F. Quigley Lawrence F. Quigley.png 1928 – 1929 Democratic This was the first of the two year mayoral terms.
34th John J. Whalen 1930 – 1931 Democratic
35th Lawrence F. Quigley Lawrence F. Quigley.png 1932 – 1935 Democratic
36th Edward J. Voke Judgevoke.jpg 1936 – 1941 Democratic
37th Bernard L. Sullivan 1942 – 1947
38th Tom Keating 1948 – 1949
39th Joseph A. Melley 1950 – 1951 Democratic
40th Andrew P. Quigley 1952 – 1955 Democratic
41st Hugh McLaughlin 1956 – 1959
42nd Alfred Voke 1960 – 1963
43rd John J. Slater 1964 – 1969
44th Joseph Margolis 1970 – 1971
Acting Charles W. DeIorio 1971 Became acting mayor when Mayor Joseph Margolis died in office
45th Philip J. Spellman 1972 – 1975
46th Joel Pressman 1976 – 1983
47th James D. Mitchell 1984 – 1985
48th Thomas Nolan 1986 – 1987
49th John J. Brennan, Jr. 1988 – September 1991

See also[edit]

Chelsea Historical Society, Mayors of Chelsea 1857 – 1991.