Biography of James M. Fitzpatrick
Bronx County, NY Biographies





JAMES MARTIN FITZPATRICK - A native of Massachusetts, but for more than three decades a resident of New York City, Mr. Fitzpatrick has been for many years one of the most prominent and popular leaders of The Bronx, and since 1918 has represented most effectively the Twenty seventh (aldermanic) District, one of the eight alderman districts of The Bronx, in the New York City Board of Aldermen. Since January 1, 1926, he has also been engaged in the real estate business in the eastern section of The Bronx, as a member of the firm of Fitzpatrick & Domph, with offices at No. 1500 Williamsbridge Road, corner of Eastchester Road, and his firm, though comparatively a newcomer in its field, is rapidly becoming one of the most active and successful in its section. Its success, to a great extent, is based on Mr. Fitzpatrick's great personal popularity, his unusually wide acquaintance amongst all classes of people, his thorough knowledge of general conditions and of real estate values in The Bronx, and his undoubted natural abilities.

James Martin Fitzpatrick was born June 27, 1869, in West Stockbridge, Massachusetts, a son of Thomas and Mary (Burke) Fitzpatrick. Both his parents were natives of County Mayo, Ireland, but throughout the greater part of their lives, residents of the United States. His father, born in April, 1824, a son of John Fitzpatrick, died in 1915, in his ninety second year, while his mother, born in 1826, a daughter of Thomas C. and Mary (Costello) Burke, died in 1904.

James M. Fitzpatrick was educated in the public schools of his native town, which he left at the age of twelve years to go to work, continuing, however, as best he could, his education by attending night school for a number of years. His first employment was in a cotton mill, where he remained until he was fifteen years old, when he went to work in the iron mines at West Stockbridge. Eight years later, in 1892, he gave up this work and removed to New York City, where he became a conductor on the Second Avenue Street Railway. Before long he was made one of the adjusters in the claim department of this company, and there his industry, ability and personality quickly found recognition which resulted in his advancement to the important and responsible position of examiner and adjuster in the company's law department. In this capacity he was entrusted with the handling of all of the more important claims for his company, frequently involving large sums of money and affecting diverse and important interests. In 1907 he was transferred to the pay roll of the Interboro Rapid Transit Railway Company but still handled claims for the entire Metropolitan Railway System. He continued with the Interboro Rapid Transit Railway System until December 31, 1925, when he resigned after thirty three years of most faithful and effective service. His resignation was the result of his decision to enter the real estate business, and on January 1, 1926, he organized the firm of Fitzpatrick & Domph, of which he has since then been the senior member. The firm conducts a general real estate business and handles mortgage loans, being especially interested in that large section of The Bronx usually called East Bronx and reaching from City Island to Clasen Point. Mr. Fitzpatrick has devoted a great deal of attention to local politics for many years as one of the most active and useful supporters of the Democratic party and its principles. As early as 1896 he entered the political arena as a public speaker, and his ready wit and great fluency brought him success from the start. Since then he has taken an active part in every political campaign. Beginning with 1918 he has been regularly, and always with large majorities, elected a member of the New York City Board of Aldermen, his latest reelection having occurred in November, 1925, for a two year term, expiring December 31, 1927. He resigned from the Board February 28, 1927, having been elected to Congress from the Twenty fourth Congressional District and on March 4, 1927, he took his seat in the National House of Representatives. He was considered one of the most capable members of the Board, with an extraordinary broad grasp of the practical needs of his community and an unusually keen sense of responsibility towards those whose interests were placed in his keeping. He has sponsored many constructive and helpful ordinances, including one which brought about municipal operation of the Clasen Point ferry in spite of strong and influential opposition. Other legislation, either originated or supported by him, has resulted in many important and helpful local improvements and one of the outstanding characteristics of all his ordinances is that that they are invariably clear and free from all political pitfalls. On the 1926 Board he was a member of the apportionment committee, the finance and the rules committees and chairman of the committee on codification of ordinances. He also held the important position of member of the committee on reapportionment of the assembly districts. He was one of the advocates of refusing tax exemption on apartment houses and granting it to private homes with a view of stimulating thereby home building by individuals. He is a member of St. Raymond's Council, Knights of Columbus; The Bronx Real Estate Board; Chippewa Democratic Club; the F. & S. Club; United Taxpayers' Association; Throgg's Neck Taxpayers' Association; Morris Estate Taxpayers' Association; Lorillard Spencer Taxpayers' Association; and Van Nest Businessmen's Association. His religious affiliations are with the Roman Catholic church and more particularly with the Church of Our Lady of Solace, Van Nest Avenue and White Plains Road, in which he has been one of the ushers for ten years.

Mr. Fitzpatrick married (first), in Stockbridge, Massachusetts, November 28, 1895, Ellen E. Leahey, who died February 5, 1909. Mrs. Fitzpatrick was a daughter of Michael and Mary (Kiley) Leahey, both natives of Stockbridge, where the former died in 1924, in his eighty fourth year, and the latter in 1904, in her sixtieth year. Mr. Fitzpatrick married (second), September 14, 1922, Laura B. Stevenson, a daughter of John and Mary (Bale Stevenson, the former a native of Scotland, where he was born in 1861, the latter a native of Brooklyn, New York, where she was born also, in 1864. Mr. Fitzpatrick is the father of four children, three by his first marriage and one by his second: 1. Charles A., born August 27, 1896. 2. Elizabeth E., born November 28, 1900. 3. James Martin, Jr., born April 22, 1904. 4. John Malcolm, born January 12, 1924. The family home is located at No. 1721 Filmore Street, The Bronx.

From:
The Bronx and its people
A History 1609-1927
Board of Editors: James L. Wells,
Louis F. Haffen
Josiah A. Briggs.
Historian: Benedict Fitspatrick
Publisher: The Lewis Historical Publishing Co., Inc.
New York 1927


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