Hugh Joseph Addonizio

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Hugh Joseph Addonizio
Hugh Addonizio.jpg
35th Mayor of Newark
In office
July 1, 1962 – July 1, 1970
Preceded byLeo P. Carlin
Succeeded byKenneth A. Gibson
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 11th district
In office
January 3, 1949 – June 30, 1962
Preceded byFrank Sundstrom
Succeeded byJoseph Minish
Personal details
Born(1914-01-31)January 31, 1914
Newark, New Jersey, U.S.
DiedFebruary 2, 1981(1981-02-02) (aged 67)
Red Bank, New Jersey, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic Party
Alma materFordham University
Military service
Allegiance United States
Branch/service United States Army
RankUS-O3 insignia.svg Captain
Battles/warsWorld War II
AwardsSilver Star

Hugh Joseph Addonizio (January 31, 1914 – February 2, 1981) was an American Democratic Party politician who was sentenced to prison for corruption. He was the 33rd Mayor of Newark, New Jersey, from 1962 to 1970, and a U.S. Congressman from 1949 to 1962.

Early life and education[edit]

Born in Newark to an Italian family, Addonizio attended West Side High School and played quarterback at Saint Benedict's Preparatory School. Addonizio graduated from Fordham University in New York City in 1939, attending with an athletic scholarship, and went to work for A&C Clothing Company, working for his father, where he became vice president in 1946.[1]

World War II[edit]

During World War II he had served in the United States Army earning the Silver Star; he served in North Africa, Italy and France. Addonizio was among the first Americans drafted in 1940, a year before Pearl Harbor. He rose from the rank of private, was discharged with the rank of captain, and was named to the Officer Candidate School Hall of Fame at Fort Benning.

Political career[edit]

In 1948, he ran for and won a seat in the United States House of Representatives as a Democrat, representing New Jersey's 11th congressional district. He resigned his seat on June 30, 1962, to run for mayor of Newark. He ran on a reform platform, defeating what he characterized as the corrupt political machine of Leo P. Carlin, who had been mayor since 1953.[2]

Corruption investigation[edit]

Addonizio served as mayor from 1962 until 1970, when he lost his reelection bid. A state investigation into his administration, commenced following the 1967 Newark riots that occurred during his tenure, led to the discovery that he and other city officials were taking kickbacks from city contractors. In December 1969, he and nine current or former officials of the municipal administration in Newark were indicted by a federal grand jury; five other persons were also indicted.[3]

In July 1970, the former mayor and four other defendants were found guilty by a federal jury on 64 counts each, one of conspiracy and 63 of extortion.[4] In September 1970, Addonizio was sentenced to ten years in federal prison and fined $25,000 by U.S. District Court Judge George H. Barlow for his role in a plot that involved the extortion of $1.5 million in kickbacks, a crime that the judge said "tore at the very heart of our civilized society and our form of representative government".[5][6]

Addonizio served around half of his ten-year sentence before being released on parole.[7]


Addonizio died of cardiac arrest in 1981 and was interred in Gate of Heaven Cemetery in East Hanover.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Barbanel, Josh. "Hugh J. Addonizio 67, Convicted Of Extortion As Newark's Mayor", The New York Times, February 3, 1981. Accessed November 15, 2018. "The son of Italian immigrants, Mr. Addonizio was born in Newark on Jan. 31, 1914, and attended West Side High School and St. Benedict's Prep in Newark, where he was an outstanding athlete and was named all-state quarterback."
  2. ^ "Newark: A Brief History". P.O.V. PBS. July 5, 2005.
  3. ^ Grutzner, Charles. "U.S. INDICTS MAYOR OF NEWARK, 9 PRESENT OR FORMER OFFICIALS ON $253,000 EXTORTION CHARGES; ADDONIZIO ON BAIL Evasion of Tax Also Charged -- Boiardo Among Accused Mayor Addonizio Is Indicted on Extortion Charge", The New York Times, December 18, 1969. Accessed November 13, 2016. "Mayor Hugh J. Addonizio and nine present or former officials of the municipal administration in Newark were indicted yesterday by a Federal grand jury with five other persons, among whom was Anthony (Tony Boy) Boiardo, a reputed member of the Mafia."
  4. ^ Brady, Thomas F. "Addonizio and 4 Convicted Of Extortion by U.S. Jury", The New York Times, July 23, 1970. Accessed November 13, 2016. "Hugh J. Addonizio, former Mayor of Newark, and four other defendants were found guilty by federal jury tonight on 64 counts each, one of conspiracy and 63 of extortion."
  5. ^ Sullivan, Ronald. "Addonizio Given a 10-Year Term", The New York Times, September 23, 1970. Accessed November 13, 2016. "Former Mayor Hugh J. Addonizio of Newark was sentenced to 10 years in prison and fined $25,000 in Federal Court here today for conspiracy and extortion. Convicted of sharing in the proceeds of extorted kickbacks totaling $1.5 million from contractors on city water and sewer lines, Addonizio stood impassively with his head bowed as Judge George H. Barlow declared that his crimes were of 'monumental proportion' that 'tore at the very heart of our civilized society and our form of representative government.'"
  6. ^ Barbanel, Josh. "HUGH J. ADDONIZIO, 67, EX-MAYOR OF NEWARK JAILED 5 YEARS, DEAD", The New York Times, February 2, 1981. Accessed April 7, 2015. "Hugh J. Addonizio, a former Congressman and two-term Mayor of Newark who was sentenced to 10 years in Federal prison and fined $25,000 for conspiracy and extortion died early this morning at Riverview Hospital in Red Bank, N.J."
  7. ^ Barbanel, Josh (1981-02-03). "HUGH J. ADDONIZIO 67, CONVICTED OF EXTORSION AS NEWARK'S MAYOR (Published 1981)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2021-02-15.

External links[edit]

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 11th congressional district

Succeeded by
Political offices
Preceded by Mayor of Newark
Succeeded by