See the video sequel, "Jersey City's False Dawn" at: vimeo.com/208739212
This mini-documentary reviews the fall of the infamous political machine of Jersey City Mayor Frank Hague. For 35 years, Boss Hague ruled New Jersey. His influence reached the highest levels of the Democratic party up to and including the FDR White House. Also examined are Hague's most notable public works projects, his monuments to Bossism that changed the face of the city. In 1949, a team of opposition candidates known as the Freedom Ticket brought down the Hague machine by winning election to the City Commission. A former Hague lieutenant, John V. Kenny, became mayor. But unlike Mayor Hague, Kenny presided over a fractious City Hall. Challenges to his authority from fellow commissioner James F. Murray, Sr. led to divisions and conflicts within the new administration that would have been unimaginable during the Hague Era.
This program is a by-product of recent research on Jersey City’s 1929 election, building on previous research which led to the article“Bosses & Reformers: Jersey City Victory Movement of 1957” by Joseph M. Murray, published in New Jersey History, Volume 103, Numbers 3-4 (Fall/Winter 1985).. This video also incorporates rare Freedom Ticket photographs, together with film and audio clips from the Murray family archives. The film was premiered at the Hudson County Historical Fair in 2014.