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Newbold Morris (February 2, 1902 - March 30, 1966) was an American politician, lawyer, president of the New York City Council, and two-time candidate for mayor of New York City.

Born Augustus Newbold Morris in New York City, Newbold Morris, who never used his first name, descended from the prominent Colonial-era Morris family of the Morrisania section of the Bronx. He was educated at Groton School and at Yale, where he was a member of the Scroll and Key Society.

On August 1, 1942, Morris married Constance Hand, youngest daughter of renowned American judge Learned Hand. The wedding ceremony was performed by Mayor La Guardia in Gracie Mansion. [1]

Morris was a member of the New York City Planning Commission and served as President of the New York City Council from 1938 to 1945 under Mayor Fiorello La Guardia. Morris ran for New York City Mayor in 1945 and in 1949. He was instrumental in founding City Center Theater in 1943 and the New York City Opera in 1944. Morris also served as chairman of the board of Lincoln Center.

On February 1, 1952, Morris was appointed Special Assistant Attorney General by Attorney General J. Howard McGrath to investigate possible corruption in the Department of Justice. After Morris distributed a questionnaire to senior justice officials and called for unlimited access to all of McGrath’s personal records, McGrath fired Morris on April 3, 1952. Morris had spent a mere 63 days in the job. A few days later Howard McGrath was forced to resign his position by President Harry Truman.

Morris was appointed Parks Commissioner of New York City by Mayor Robert F. Wagner on May 24, 1960, succeeding Robert Moses, who had served as Commissioner for an unprecedented 26 years. Morris served as Commissioner until January 15, 1966. He died in New York City two months later.

Morris, cousin of the author Edith Wharton, was also an champion amateur figure-skater.


  1. ^ "Son Born to Newbold Morrises" The New York Times, May 12, 1944
  • Almanac of Famous People, 8th ed. Gale Group, 2003.
  • Caro, Robert A., The Power Broker, 1974.
  • "Newbold Morris, 64, Is Dead of Cancer" The New York Times, April 1, 1966
Political offices
Preceded by
President of the New York City Council
1938 – 1945
Succeeded by
Vincent R. Impellitteri
Party political offices
Preceded by
Jonah Goldstein
Republican Nominee for Mayor of New York City
Succeeded by
Harold Riegelman


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