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This biography is from Landmarks of Albany County, New York, edited by Amasa J. Parker of Albany, N. Y., Syracuse, N. Y.; D. Mason & Co. Publishers, 1897.

John A. Delahanty

John A. Delehanty was born in Albany, N. Y., May 18, 1857, and received his earlier education in the public schools and Free Academy of his native city. He was graduated with honor from Union College in 1877, read law in the office of Hon. Simon W. Rosendale, ex-attorney general, and was admitted to the bar in September, 1879, when he at once began the active practice of his profession. In 1881 he was appointed assistant district attorney of Albany county by District Attorney D. Cady Herrick, and held that position until Judge Herrick became corporation counsel of the city of Albany in May, 1886, when he resigned to accept the appointment of assistant corporation counsel under Mr. Herrick. Upon Judge Hernck's elevation to the Supreme Court bench on January 1, 1892, Mr. Delehanty succeeded him as corporation counsel, and continued in that capacity until May 1, 1894. He was appointed corporation counsel January 1, 1896, and is the present incumbent of the office.

The office of corporation counsel is perhaps the most important and responsible position connected with a municipal government, as the incumbent of the office is not only required to represent the corporation in all litigation in which it is interested, but the relations between the various departments are determined and regulated under his advice and direction. The subject of reform in the method of governing municipal corporations which is now attracting such widespread attention is a problem, to which Mr. Delehanty has devoted much time and study. His experience has made him a firm believer in and advocate of the theory that the most businesslike administration of city affairs depends upon the concentration of the exclusive power of appointment of all subordinate officers in the chief executive, thus imposing responsibihty where it rightfully belongs. With this idea in view during his connection with the city government he has been instrumental in effecting legislation which has entrusted such power in the mayor of Albany to a greater extent perhaps than in any other city in the State of New York; in fact it now applies to almost every department of the city government. He is also the author of a proposed charter for a city government which follows this doctrine to its fullest extent and provides for departments each under the management of a single individual instead of boards and commissions as now generally administered. Although the measure has not as yet become a law, the plan proposed has received favorable comment from students of municipal reform, who are of the opinion that it will in a great measure solve this much vexed question. The commissions appointed by Governor Morton to report uniform charters for cities of the second and third class have reported proposed charters, based upon the plan which Mr. Delehanty devised incorporating therein many sections of his proposed charter in their entirety without change of language.

During the administration of the office of corporation counsel by Mr. Delehanty the city has been unusually successful in its litigations. His great experience in corporation law has been valuable and useful in his private practice, and he has been successful in a large number of cases involving intricate points of municipal law.

Mr. Delehanty is a member of the Fort Orange and Albany Clubs, and takes an active interest in the welfare of his native city. He was married in 1884 to a daughter of the late Hon. Daniel Manning of Albany, and they have two children: Margaret Manning Delehanty and Raymond Manning Delehanty.

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