A further step forward was taken in 1883 when Fremantle was raised to the dignity of a corporation presided over by a mayor, B.C. Wood being the first to occupy that position. The following list shows the mayors of the municipality.
1883-1885 - Barrington C. Wood
1886-1888 - Daniel K. Congdon
1889-1891- Elias Solomon
1892-1893 - William Frederick Samson
1894 - D.K. Congdon
1901 - E.W. Davies, removed from office as insane
1902 - Lawrence Alexander
1903 - Tom Smith
1904-1905 - Frank Cadd
1906-1907 - Michael Samson
1908-1909 - W.A. Murphy
1910 - Edward H. Fothergill
1911 - W.A. Murphy
1912 and 1914 - J.F. McLaren
1915-1918 - William Ernest Wray
1919 - W. Montgomery
1920-1923 - Frank Gibson
It will be noted that a number of those wore the mayoral robes for several terms. Much shorter than the list of mayors that of successive town clerks is as follows. (Hitchcock)
1871-1874 - George Thompson
1874-1904 - George Bland Humble
1904-1910 - S.J. McMillan
1910-1921 - H.T. Haynes
George Thompson was an ex-solicitor from England and afterwards founded the firm of Thompson, Sendy and Company. For the first 15 years of his term as town clerk G. B. Humble also held the position of headmaster of the Government Boys' School, and for 25 years of his term he was also secretary of the Fremantle Building Society. Hitchcock: 89, 91.
The Wikipedia entry incorrectly statse that the Chairman of the Town Council had the title of Mayor from 1871. Hitchcock indicates explicitly (above) that the title of Mayor was not conferred until the accession of B.C. Wood to the chair of the Municipal Council in 1883.
John K. Ewers, 1971, The Western Gateway: A History of Fremantle, Fremantle City Council, with UWAP, rev. ed. [1st ed. 1948] Appendix 7: 215-216.
In 1848 a Town Trust was formed comprising a chairman and a committee of five. For the next twenty-three years they set about constructing roads and many fine public buildings with the use of convict labour. By 1870 the population of Fremantle had reached 3,796 and was a moderately flourishing town. There was a move among the colonists to secure greater control of the management of their affairs and in 1871 the Fremantle Town Council was formed, with a chairman and nine councillors. Two of the major achievements of the Town Council were a reliable supply of pure water and a more efficient system of sanitation. By 1928 Fremantle had a population of 22,340 and an annual revenue of £73,354 - enough to warrant a claim for city status. City status was conferred upon Fremantle on the 3 June 1929 as a centenary honour in 1929.
North Fremantle, originally part of Fremantle, broke away in October 1895 to become an independent municipality. The first mayor of North Fremantle was Daniel Keen Congdon. The two municipalities were reunited by an order of the Governor in Executive Council as from 1 November 1961. Wikipedia page for City of Fremantle
Battye, JS 1924, Western Australia: A History from its Discovery to the Inauguration of the Commonwealth, Clarendon Press, Oxford.
Ewers, John K. 1971, The Western Gateway: A History of Fremantle, Fremantle City Council, with UWAP, rev. ed. [1st ed. 1948].
Hitchcock, JK 1929, The History of Fremantle, The Front Gate of Australia 1829-1929, Fremantle City Council.
Fremantle Stuff Chronology
Garry Gillard | New: 7 October, 2015 | Now: 10 August, 2017