Daniel Hoan was known as the longest-serving Socialist in the United States government. He won the election for Milwaukee mayor seven consecutive times due to the trust the people gave him. His political career consisted of initiatives that catered to the improvement of the community.
Daniel Webster Hoan’s various achievements in his government career gained much recognition because of his genuine initiative to serve and listen to the people he governed. He even started the first public housing project in the county.
The Early Life of Daniel Webster Hoan
Daniel Webster Hoan was born on March 12, 1881, in Waukesha, Wisconsin. In his early academic years, he was a student in the public schools among Waukesha, but his education came to a temporary stop once his father died in 1894.
He continued his schooling in 1901, enrolling at the University of Wisconsin, where he attained his Bachelor of Arts in 1905. After his graduation, he moved to Chicago and introduced his restaurant to America, and despite his efforts, his restaurant soon failed.
He continued to pursue his education in Chicago by studying law. Three years have passed since his graduation, and he decides to move to Milwaukee to learn labor law. (Source: Encyclopedia of Milwaukee)
Hoan’s Political Career
Two years have gone by, and in 1910, people voted him to be the city attorney on the Socialist ticket. His active efforts to decrease fares and provide better services to the people from the Milwaukee Electric Railway and Light Company gained the recognition of the masses, acquiring encouragement and re-election in 1914.
Hoan was re-elected seven times in the span of his political career. In his first and second terms from 1916 to 1920, Hoan compromised the National Socialist Party’s war opposition and became the neutral ground between war supporters and the socialists. Serving as the co-chair for the Local Council of Defense, he executed the draft registration in Milwaukee.
In 1917, Hoan assured the masses’ access to food by buying truckloads worth of food to reduce its price at the local market. In 1920, city offices sold excess Army goods. The same year, Milwaukee’s mayoral terms extended from two years to four years. Hoan proceeded to succeed in the mayoral elections another five times.
Hoan was hands-on in his leadership, making thorough inspections and reforms in the name of his citizens’ wellbeing. Many developments occurred in the general safety and health of the public. Hoan reformed the police systems by increasing their salary and funding the officers’ training, but he also did routine health inspections and vaccination programs. (Source: Encyclopedia of Milwaukee)
The Highs and Lows of His Carer
With Daniel Hoan’s governance, Milwaukee became esteemed for its honesty, efficiency, and public safety. Milwaukee even received national recognition because of the implemented policies and the positive physical welfare of the citizens. The Time magazine made Hoan their cover page in 1936, noting the tremendous advancements Hoan has made in Milwaukee.
Finally being defeated by Carl Zeidler in the mayoral elections in 1940, Hoan left the Socialist Party to join the Democrats. He proceeded to lose many races for the position of Congress and Milwaukee Mayor before retirement.
He passed away in June 1961, with his legacy continuing to live through his achievements. (Source: Encyclopedia of Milwaukee)