Category

Mayor Theodore Lyman 
Served 1834-1835

"Born in Boston, February 19, 1792; died July 17, 1849; served as Mayor during 1834-1835.

He has been described as a man 'of good understanding, enlarged by a liberal education and extensive foreign travel.' At all events, he was a farsighted and able man. One of his early acts was to draw attention to the need of a better water supply. Hitherto water had been obtained from Jamaica Pond for certain parts of the city, through crude pipe lines which proved quite insufficient. Efforts had been made to study the whole subject, but without tangible results until Mayor Lyman sent a message to the City Council about the water supply, the Council, in turn, referring it to a committee of which the Mayor was chairman. But in spite of the urgency of the situation, a number of years elapsed until final action was taken on the basis of recommendations furnished by Colonel Loammi Baldwin, an engineer, who had been selected to make a special investigation of the most available water supply.

Mayor Lyman achieved, among other things, the erection of a well-founded house of reformation, a larger development of the primary school system, and was much occupied with street extension and improvement. He did not confine his attention solely to the needs of Boston in penal reform. It is due to him that the State Reform school at Westboro for juvenile offenders, the first institution of its kind, was established (now known as the Lyman School for Boys). To him we also owe a school of similar character for girls at Lancaster. He interested himself in and was for many years the manager of the Farm School for Boys at Thompson's Island.

Several stirring events took place under Lyman's administration. One was the destruction of the Ursuline Convent in Charlestown by a mob; others were the demonstrations against the abolition movement, particularly the one of October 21, 1835 at which William Lloyd Garrison was seized by the mob, and Mayor Lyman offered his own body as a shield to Garrison against the rioters."

 

Theodore Lyman, Boston Mayor 1834-1835
Theodore Lyman

 

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