Prince, Frederick O. (Frederick Octavius), 1818-1899
The twenty-fourth mayor of Boston, Frederick Octavius Prince, was noted primarily for his eloquent speeches. He had a long line of ancestors who were more or less prominent in Boston. He could trace his line back to 1581, when John Prince, rector of East Sheffield, Berkshire, England, owned the estate called Abbey Foregate. Elder John Prince, of Hull, came to this country in 1633, and his grandson, Thomas Prince, who graduated from Harvard in 1707, was pastor of the Old South Church. Mayor Prince was born January 18, 1818. He was fitted for college at the Boston Latin School, and was Class Poet at Harvard. He studied law, and became a member of the legislature for Winchester, serving in 1851, 1852, and 1853, attaining great popularity by his speeches on reform. In 1854 he was a member of the Constitutional Convention, and also of the State Senate. He attended many Democratic national conventions. He was elected mayor by the Democrats, and was economical during the first half of his administration, but later spent more money improving the East Boston ferries. He adopted the Public Park scheme, improved the sewerage system, and was instrumental in building the English and Latin High School buildings.
He had tact, sagacity, and energy, but was often unable to make party and civic interests meet. He died June 6, 1899.
Taken from "Boston's 45 Mayors from John Phillips to Kevin H. White," City Record, Boston, 1979.
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Photographs and other images collected by the Boston Landmarks Commission for reference use and for publications as well as photographs taken by the Landmarks Commission documenting their work and city neighborhoods.