Attleboro Mayor Philip Brady

FOR ATTLEBORO CENTENNIAL PUBLICATION Attleboro Mayor Philip E. Brady. 2nd mayor. 1919-22.

Judge Philip E. Brady was the top vote-getter for an at-large seat in the first municipal council election in 1914.

He repeated the feat in two subsequent at-large races, which put him in good position to seek the mayor's job in 1918. And, that's just what he did.

Brady resigned from the presidency of the council to run for the corner office, and was opposed by George M. Gustin, who had lost a bid in 1917 for an at-large city council seat, and Samuel M. Holman.

Like the first mayoral election, things got a little testy as the campaign went on, with someone circulating a charge that Brady had promised to make James H. Leedham Jr. the city solicitor if Leedham signed his nomination papers.

Brady branded the accusation a "downright falsehood" at a rally just days before the election.

Meanwhile, Brady fought back, dubbing Gustin a "stalking horse," and criticizing Holman for voting against the "eight-hour bill."

Brady's bid for the city's top job won a big boost when the popular first mayor, Harold E. Sweet, endorsed him and he was elected the second mayor of Attleboro.

Two years later, in 1920, he sought re-election and faced four opponents, including Eliza G. Daggett the city's first woman candidate for mayor.

Daggett garnered just 84 votes, but it was a historic event, nonetheless, in the first year that women were allowed to vote and run for office.

Brady won the election with 1,662 votes.

Ignoring Sweet's suggestion that two terms were enough for any mayor, he sought a third term in 1922, but finished third, behind George A. Sweeney and Harlan A. Allen, in part at least, because of a tax rate that more than doubled during his tenure.

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