Boston’s political machine survival despite repeated defeat

In shaping the political urban environment, few political bosses have made as lasting of an impact as James Curley did in early twentieth century Boston. As the instigator and organizer of a political machine, Curley’s dominating career “included four terms as mayor, two terms in Congress, one term as governor, and two terms in prison” (Connolly 134). His tactics for mobilizing voter support ranged from patronage to bribery, but his power rested most heavily on his charismatic social influence over the people of Boston.

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