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Cornelius Edward Gallagher

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Cornelius Edward Gallagher
Cornelius Edward Gallagher.jpg
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 13th district
In office
January 3, 1959 – January 3, 1973
Preceded by Alfred D. Sieminski
Succeeded by Joseph J. Maraziti
Personal details
Born (1921-03-02)March 2, 1921
Bayonne, New Jersey
Died October 17, 2018(2018-10-17) (aged 97)
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Claire[1]
Children Diane, Christine, Patricia, Bridgette[1]
Residence Columbia, New Jersey
Alma mater John Marshall College
John Marshall Law School

Cornelius Edward "Neil" Gallagher (March 2, 1921 – October 17, 2018)[2] was an American Democratic Party politician who represented New Jersey's 13th congressional district in the United States House of Representatives from 1959 until 1973.

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Gallagher was born in Bayonne, New Jersey, his father, a police officer, died when he was eight. He began working at a young age as a newsboy, and later a soda jerk.[1] He attended St. Mary's School and Bayonne High School and graduated from John Marshall College in 1946; in 1945 and 1946 he was a member of the faculty of Rutgers University. He also graduated from John Marshall Law School with an LL.B. in 1948, and engaged in additional studies at New York University in 1948 and 1949. Gallagher was admitted to the bar in 1949.

During World War II, Gallagher commanded an infantry rifle company in General George S. Patton's Third Army in Europe and served from September 1941 until discharged as a captain in November 1946. During the Korean War, he served one year.

Gallagher was appointed a director of the Broadway National Bank, and was elected to the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders in 1953, a post he held until resigning in 1956, when he was appointed commissioner of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. Gallagher was also a delegate to the Democratic National Conventions of 1952, 1956 and 1960.

He was elected as a Democrat to the Eighty-sixth through Ninety-second Congresses (January 3, 1959 – January 3, 1973). In Congress, he served on the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the Committee on Government Operations.[1]

Conflict with J. Edgar Hoover

As a congressman, Gallagher became an activist against government surveillance of citizens, and chaired the Invasion of Privacy Subcommittee.[3] Gallagher was a critic of the tactics of Federal Bureau of Investigation Director J. Edgar Hoover (whom he compared to Soviet secret police administrator Lavrentiy Beria) and Attorney General Robert F. Kennedy. Gallagher was approached by attorney Roy Cohn, who asked him on behalf of Hoover to hold hearings which would shift the blame for government surveillance from Hoover to Kennedy. Gallagher refused.[4] When media accounts surfaced, including in Life magazine,[3] which contained alleged leaked material from FBI wiretaps suggesting that Gallagher was connected to the mafia, Gallagher accused Hoover of fabricating the stories to hound him from public life.[5][6] Cohn met with Gallagher again, demanding on Hoover's behalf that he resign or face further allegations.[4] Gallagher pleaded guilty in 1972 to tax evasion and perjury.[3]

A book detailing Gallagher's side of the story was published in 2003.[7]

Gallagher subsequently became vice president of Baron/Canning International in New York City, and was a resident of the Columbia section of Knowlton Township, New Jersey.


Gallagher died on October 17, 2018 at the age of 97.[8]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d "Man in the News". New York Times. April 20, 1972. Retrieved 2016-10-02.
  2. ^ Cornelius Gallagher, former New Jersey congressman, dies at 97
  3. ^ a b c Biographical sketch, congressional archives, University of Oklahoma Archived 2013-10-03 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ a b Summers, Anthony, Official and Confidential: the Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover, Open Road Media, Jan 17, 2012
  5. ^ presents La Cosa Nostra, State of New Jersey Commission of Investigation 1989 Report, GET NJ, Jersey City N.J. p. 38.
  6. ^ Gentry, Curt, J. Edgar Hoover, the Man and his Secrets, W. W. Norton & Company, Feb 17, 2001
  7. ^ Felber, Ron (2003). The Privacy War: One Congressman, J. Edgar Hoover and the Fight for the Fourth Amendment. Montvale, NJ: Croce Publishing Group, LLC. ISBN 0-9719538-9-9.
  8. ^

External links

U.S. House of Representatives
Preceded by
Alfred D. Sieminski
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from New Jersey's 13th congressional district

January 3, 1959-January 3, 1973
Succeeded by
Joseph J. Maraziti
This page was last edited on 17 October 2018, at 16:55
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