Croker, Richard, 1841–1922, American politician, head of Tammany Hall from 1886 to 1902, b. Co. Cork, Ireland. He became prominent as Democratic leader of New York City's East Side and as an aide of John Kelly. He was elected (1868) alderman and held minor appointive offices, which increased in importance after Kelly succeeded (1871) William M. Tweed as boss. Croker became Kelly's chief lieutenant, and after Kelly's retirement (1884) Croker was the acknowledged Tammany boss. Croker was (1889–90) city chamberlain and brought about the elections of Hugh Grant (1888), Thomas F. Gilroy (1892), and Robert Van Wyck (1897) as mayors. The election (1901) of Seth Low as mayor of New York caused Croker's abdication as Tammany leader, and he was succeeded by Charles F. Murphy. Croker spent the remainder of his life in leisure in England and Ireland.
See T. L. Stoddard, Master of Manhattan (1931).
The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.
See more Encyclopedia articles on: U.S. History: Biographies