|Name||George X. Schwartz|
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103, United States
|| 00, 1915
|| March 26, 2010
Mar 29, 2010 10:55am
|Info||He was born in New York but grew up in West Philadelphia, the son of a successful real estate dealer. He graduated from West Philadelphia High School in 1932, received an undergraduate degree from Temple University in 1936, and graduated from Temple University Law School in 1940. |
Mr. Schwartz began his law career at the same time he entered politics, serving first as a committeeman from the 34th Ward in Overbrook. By 1962, he had become ward leader for the "Fighting 34th," a staunchly Democratic organization noted for the fierce loyalty of its organizational members.
That loyalty was directed to Mr. Schwartz, who controlled the ward in much the same way he would later dominate City Council.
Mr. Schwartz was first elected to the State House in 1952 but lost the seat two years later.
With the help of then-U.S. Rep. William J. Green Jr., he won back the seat in 1956.
With Green's backing, Mr. Schwartz became a councilman in 1960 after the sudden death of then-Councilman Sammy Rose.
His tenure as Council president was marked by his ironfisted rule. He set the course of virtually every piece of legislation considered by Council, dominated the Democratic caucus, and controlled most of the political patronage.
Mr. Schwartz was convicted of conspiracy and extortion from the FBI Abscam sting. After a lengthy legal battle, Mr. Schwartz in 1985 began serving a one-year, one-day federal prison sentence.
Mr. Schwartz married his high school sweetheart, Jerre. They first dated when he was 14. She died in 1994.
In his later years up until his death, he lived in the William Penn House in Center City.
He is survived by a son, William G. Schwartz; daughters Marjorie Dilsheimer and Susan Goodrich; 10 grandchildren, and 11 great-grandchildren.