FITZGERALD, WILLIAM SINTON (6 Oct. 1880-3 Oct. 1937), a member of city council for 4 years and appointed mayor by HARRY L. DAVIS in 1921, was born in Washington, D.C., to David and Esther Sinton FitzGerald. He was educated in Washington's public schools, and received a Master of Laws degree from Geo. Washington University in 1903. He came to Cleveland in 1904, was admitted to the Ohio bar that year, and practiced law. In 1911 he was elected to city council from the 11th ward as a Republican and served 2 terms.
FitzGerald was appointed law director by Mayor Harry L. Davis, and when Davis resigned in 1920 to campaign for governor, FitzGerald became mayor. In his brief tenure as mayor, FitzGerald successfully worked with city council, especially Councilman Jacob Stacel, in preventing the Ku Klux Klan from establishing a presence in Cleveland. Condemning the Klan as an “un-American society,” he warned that its hateful presence would foment civil disorder and destroy the city’s multicultural fabric and unity. “I represent no one creed, nationality or color,” FitzGerald said in a speech printed on the front page of THE PLAIN DEALER on August 30, 1921. “I represent the entire city. There is no place here for such an order. It is an outrage to our intelligence.”
He was defeated in his mayoral bid by FRED KOHLER in 1921 and afterward resumed his law practice. FitzGerald died in N. ROYALTON at age 56. He had married Margaret Chilton Tucker on 14 Jan. 1920, and they had a son, Wm. Sinton, Jr. They were divorced in 1922, and he married Carolina Granger on 23 Mar. 1933.