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Edward J. Barrett (March 10, 1900 – April 4, 1977) was an American politician.

Born in Chicago, Illinois, Barrett served in the United States Army during World War I in Europe from 1917 to 1920. He then went to Spaulding Institute and then received his bachelor's degree from Mayo College of Commerce. He worked in advertising and sales and was involved in organized labor in Chicago.

In 1932, he was elected Illinois Treasurer as a Democrat. In 1934, Barrett was elected Illinois Auditor of Public Accounts and served until 1940.

In 1941, he joined the United States Marine Corps and served as Sergeant in the South Pacific during World War II.[1]

In 1942, he ran unsuccessfully for Illinois Treasurer. In 1944, Barrett was elected Illinois Secretary of State. Reelected in 1948, he served until after his defeat in in 1952.[1]

In 1955, Barrett was appointed Cook County Clerk to replace Richard J. Daley who was elected Mayor of Chicago. Barrett served until 1973, when was convicted of bribery, mail fraud, and income tax evasion. He was sentenced to three years in prison and fined $15,000 dollars, but was allowed house arrest because of ill health. Barrett died at Veterans Administration Hospital Lakeside, in Chicago, Illinois.[2][3][4]


  1. 1.0 1.1 "Illinois Voters Elect Sergeant Secy. Of State - Marine Corps Chevron, 18 November 1944, page 3". Marine Corps Chevron – Princeton University Library. 
  2. Illinois Blue Book 1951-1952, Biographical Sketch of Edward J. Barrett, pg. 125
  3. Edward Barrett, longtime Democratic power, dies", Chicago Tribune, April 5, 1977, pg. 1-2
  4. Court Lister: United States vs. Edward J. Barrett
Political offices
Preceded by
Omer N. Custer
Treasurer of Illinois
Succeeded by
John C. Martin
Preceded by
Oscar Nelson
Illinois Auditor of Public Accounts
Succeeded by
Arthur C. Lueder
Preceded by
Richard Yates Rowe
Secretary of State of Illinois
Succeeded by
Charles F. Carpentier

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