Military Wiki
Frederick R. Sullivan
Sheriff of Suffolk County, Massachusetts

In office
November 15, 1939 – January 19, 1968
Preceded by John F. Dowd
Succeeded by John W. Sears
Personal details
Born 1905
Died January 19, 1968 (aged 62)
Nationality American
Political party Democratic
Alma mater Harvard College
Harvard Business School

Frederick Richard Sullivan (1905–1968) was American politician who served as sheriff of Suffolk County, Massachusetts from 1939 to 1968.

Early life

Sullivan was born in 1905 in Charlestown. He graduated from Boston Latin School and attended Harvard College, where he was a member of the school's crew and won three championships in boxing.[1] He graduated from Harvard in 1927 and worked for the Boston & Maine Railroad to pay for Harvard Business School. While attending business school, Sullivan coached the varsity crew.[2] After earning his graduate degree, Sullivan worked for the Atlantic Precision Instrument Co. before going into the insurance business.[1]

Political career

In 1933, Sullivan was elected to the Boston School Committee.[1] In 1936 and 1937 he served as committee chairman.[3] In 1939, Suffolk County Sheriff John F. Dowd resigned while under criminal corruption investigation. Governor Leverett Saltonstall appointed Sullivan to finish Dowd's term.[4] He won a full term in 1940 by defeating city councilor and state senator John E. Kerrigan, state senator Edward C. Carroll, and former Boston city assessor Timothy W. Murphy in the Democratic primary.[5] In 1943 he joined the United States Army, where he earned as Bronze Star for moving vital cargo while commanding a quartermaster group. He was reelected in 1944 while still serving oversees. His brother-in-law, Deputy Sheriff James J. Mellen served as acting sheriff until Sullivan's return in January 1946.[6] In 1955, Sullivan was charged with negligence following the escape of Elmer "Trigger" Burke. He was acquitted and remained sheriff until his death on January 19, 1968.[2]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Owens, C.R. (November 16, 1939). "Benign Irishman Who Can Fight: That's Sullivan". 
  2. 2.0 2.1 "Sheriff Sullivan Dies at 62". January 20, 1968. 
  3. "Sullivan Again Heads Board". January 5, 1937. 
  4. Amasa, Howe (November 16, 1939). "Foley Moves to Indict Today". 
  5. "Sullivan Named Sheriff, Dorgan Wins Clerkship". September 18, 1940. 
  6. "Sheriff Sullivan Home From Wars". December 15, 1940. 

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