About Vincent Richard Impellitteri
Vincent R. Impellitteri was born in Isnello, Sicily, and moved with his family to the United States as an infant in 1901. They settled in Ansonia, Connecticut, where Impellitteri spent most of his youth.
After a stint the Navy, Impellitteri attended Fordham Law School, where he received his law degree in 1924. He served as a New York Assistant District Attorney from 1929 to 1938 before becoming a clerk to secretary to Tammany Supreme Court Justice Joseph A. Gavagan. He was a close associate of Tommy Lucchese who helped Impellitteri rise in power when he started his career in politics.
In 1945, Mayor William O'Dwyer picked Impellitteri to run for President of the City Council on the Tammany Hall slate. In 1945 he ran on the Democratic and American Labor Party lines, but when he was up for reelection in 1949 he ran on the Democratic Party line alone.
On August 31, 1950, O'Dwyer, pursued by both federal and state investigators, was suddenly appointed by President Harry S. Truman as ambassador to Mexico, where he would be beyond the reach of officials who wanted his public testimony in several matters on which he preferred not to speak. (He did not return to NYC for eleven years, long after his ambassadorship had ended, preferring to remain in Mexico).
Under the City Charter of the day, when O'Dwyer resigned, City Council President Impellitteri became acting mayor. The Tammany bosses didn't think he was Mayor material, and they refused to nominate him as the Democratic candidate for the special election in November 1950, which instead went to highly regarded New York State Supreme Court Judge Ferdinand Pecora, who was also given the Liberal line. "Impy" (as he was fondly known) was forced to run as an independent under the banner of the new “Experience Party”. He also popularized the phrase "unbought and unbossed" during his 1950 campaign.
Impellitteri was the first mayor since the consolidation of greater New York in 1898 who was elected without a major party’s ballot line, and his
Mr Impellitteri married the former Elizabeth Agnes McLaughlin in 1926. The couple had no children. Mrs. Impellitteri died in 1967. He is survived by a sister, Mrs. Rose Concowich of Derby, Conn. -------------------- Mayor NYC 1950-1953