Martin H. Glynn

40th Governor, October 17, 1913-1914
Martin H. Glynn

Martin H. Glynn (1871–1924) was a journalist at, and eventually owner and editor of, the Albany Times Union. He served in the United States House of Representatives and as the State Comptroller. Glynn became governor upon the conviction of William Sulzer, and while the outcome of the impeachment remained in dispute, both men claimed to be governor. During his term, the statewide direct primary law was enacted, a worker’s compensation bill was authorized, and taxes decreased. Glynn later served as the Chairman of the National Democratic Convention and member of the Federal Industrial Commission.

Martin H. Glynn
About the Artist

Edith Wright (1883–1975) studied with J. W. L. Forester, a British painter and went on to portray both European and American politicians. On October 22, 1931, this portrait was unveiled in the office of Governor Franklin D. Roosevelt in the State Capitol.


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From the Encyclopedia of New York State

Glynn, Martin H(enry) (b Kinderhook, Columbia Co, 27 Sept 1871; d Albany, 14 Dec 1924). Governor, newspaper editor, and publisher.

The son of Irish immigrants, Glynn attended public school in Kinderhook and graduated from Fordham University in 1894. Moving to Albany, he became a reporter for the Albany Times-Union in 1896, becoming an editor-publisher by 1902 and a prominent voice in the state Democratic Party.

While serving in the US Congress (1899–1901), he championed the rights of labor, political reform, and religious tolerance. Distinguishing himself as state comptroller from 1906 to 1908, Glynn was elected lieutenant governor in 1912.

He succeeded William Sulzer as governor in 1913 after Sulzer was impeached and removed from office. As governor, Glynn again promoted his reform program, including workers’ compensation and statewide primaries, but he lacked a commanding executive leadership and in 1914 lost a bid for another term. With his impressive oratorical skills, Glynn won the role of temporary chairman of the Democratic National Convention in 1916 and an appointment to the Federal Industrial Commission (1919–20).


While in Europe in 1921, Glynn helped facilitate negotiations between British and Irish leaders that would result in the Irish Free State.

Lizzi, Dominick C. Governor Martin H. Glynn: Forgotten Hero (Valatie,NY:Valatie Press, 1994)

Wesley G. Balla


Peter Eisenstadt, ed., The Encyclopedia of New York State
(Syracuse: Syracuse University Press, 2005), [p. 646].
© Syracuse University Press. Reproduced with permission from the publisher