Frederic T. Woodman

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Frederic Thomas Woodman
Frederic T. Woodman.jpg
31st Mayor of Los Angeles
In office
September 5, 1916 – July 1, 1919
Preceded byCharles E. Sebastian
Succeeded byMeredith P. Snyder
Member of the New Hampshire House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
BornJune 2, 1871
Plainfield, New Hampshire, U.S.
DiedMarch 25, 1949 (1949-03-26) (aged 77)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Political partyRepublican
Etta M. Sanborn
(m. 1908; died 1916)
Katherine Potter Winter
(m. 1901)

Frederic Thomas Woodman (June 2, 1871 – March 25, 1949) was an American politician who served as the 31st Mayor of Los Angeles from September 5, 1916 to July 1, 1919.[1] Previously serving in the New Hampshire House of Representatives, he moved to Los Angeles in 1908 and was appointed Mayor in September 5, 1916 after the resignation of incumbent Charles E. Sebastian.[2]

Personal life and early career[edit]

Woodman was Plainfield, New Hampshire on June 28, 1872 to Alfred Woodman and Maria Thomas Gallup Woodman.[1] His sister was Kathryn Woodman Leighton, who became an artist in Los Angeles. He attended public school in White River Junction, Vermont and went to study law in Lebanon, New Hampshire. He was later admitted to the bar in 1897 and started practice in Concord, New Hampshire. In 1901, he was elected to the New Hampshire House of Representatives where he served for two years. He youngest chair of a committee and was encouraged to run for the New Hampshire Senate, but declined to do so.

He married twice, first to Etta M. Sanborn in 1908 who died in 1916 and then to Katherine Potter Winter in 1921.[3] He died in Los Angeles on March 25, 1949.[4]

Mayor of Los Angeles[edit]

In 1907, he left New Hampshire to move to Los Angeles and made investments within the city, establishing himself in practice.[5] By 1902, he was appointed as a member of the Los Angeles Harbor Commission and was elected as its president at their first meeting. He was a member until 1916. As a member, he helped with harbor improvement and recovered all the tide lands at the harbor. In 1916, he was appointed as Mayor of Los Angeles after the resignation of Charles E. Sebastian. The next year, he was elected to a full term against former Mayor Meredith P. Snyder.[6]

In March 1919, Woodman was indicted on charges of asking and receiving a bribe, and during his campaign for the 1919 election, he was arrested and tried but was later acquitted of all charges.[7][8] Two months later, Woodman lost the election to Snyder.[9] After retiring, he returned to law and became the president of the Woodman-Gray Company and the Vista Irrigation District. He contemplated running in the 1921 Los Angeles mayoral election, but decided not to.[1]


  1. ^ a b c "Disconnected and Out of Service: A Press Photo of Los Angeles Mayor Frederic T. Woodman, ca. 1916". Homestead Museum. August 9, 2022.
  2. ^ "THE NEW MAYOR". Los Angeles Times.
  3. ^ "Council in Tribute to Mrs. Woodman". Los Angeles Herald.
  4. ^ "Former Mayor F. T. Woodman Taken by Death". Los Angeles Times. March 26, 1949.
  5. ^ "FREDERIC T. WOODMAN". The New York Times. March 26, 1949.
  6. ^ "WOODMAN NEW MAYOR; COUNCIL SPLIT OVER IT.: Citizens' Committee Criticises Manner of Naming Sebastian's Successor. Swearing In the New Mayor of Los Angeles. New Mayor". Los Angeles Times. September 6, 1916.
  7. ^ "WELCOMES CHANCE OF SHOWDOWN: "Unqualifiedly False," Answers City's Chief Executive of the Charge that He Sought and Got Money for Police Protection of Dens of Vice. GRAFT CHARGES DENIED; Mayor Woodman's Friends Welcome the Chance to "Produce the Facts."". Los Angeles Times. March 22, 1919.
  8. ^ "NO VERDICT ON BRIBERY". Los Angeles Times. October 12, 1919.
  9. ^ "WORKMAN LEADS COUNCIL RACE: Power Bond Fight is Very Close; Burnell Beats James for City Attorney by Big Majority; McCormick is High Man for the Board of Education". Los Angeles Times. June 4, 1919.

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