Mayor William B. Ogden Biography

Mayor of Chicago, 1837–1838

“I was born close to a saw mill, was early left an orphan, christened in a millpond, graduated at a log school house, and at 14 fancied I could do any thing I turned my hand to, and that nothing was impossible…”—William B. Ogden

  • Democratic Party
  • Elected first mayor of Chicago May 2, 1837; defeated John H. Kinzie (Whig)


  • Born June 15, 1805 in Walton, N.Y.
  • Elected to the Legislature of New York in 1834
  • Elected to the Illinois Senate in 1860
  • Married Miss Mariana Arnot in 1875
  • Died August 3, 1877 in Fordham Heights, N.Y.
  • Buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx, N.Y.


  • Andreas, A.T. History of Chicago: From the Earliest Period to the Present Time. A.T. Andreas, 1884–86.
  • Grossman, James R., Ann Durkin Keating and Janice L. Reiff, editors. Encyclopedia of Chicago. University of Chicago Press, 2004.
Print this page