Albert S. Woodruff

Albert S. Woodruff, 1924

Albert Smith Woodruff Jr., born in 1886 in Hopewell Township, Cumberland County, New Jersey, was a notable figure in Camden’s legal and political circles. As a prominent lawyer, he established his practice in the Woodruff Building at 328 Market Street in Camden. He resided in Merchantville with his wife Isabel at 101 Browning Road.

In 1918, Woodruff, along with Alfred L. Sayres, William C. Davis, Mark Bulifant, Dr. Orris W. Saunders, Dr. William E. Miller, and O.O. Phillips, founded the Parkside Trust Company. This bank, located at the corner of Haddon Avenue and Kaighn Avenue in Camden, later merged with the West Jersey Trust Company, illustrating Woodruff’s influence in the local financial sector.

Woodruff’s political career was predominantly within the Republican Party. He was a delegate to the Republican National Convention from New Jersey in 1924, reflecting his standing within the party. Additionally, he served as a Republican state senator for Camden County from 1924 to 1926 and again from 1933 to 1935. His role extended to serving as vice-chancellor for Camden County, showcasing his versatility in both legislative and judicial capacities.

In the mid-1930s, Woodruff was embroiled in a significant political feud with David Baird Jr., a major figure in local politics. This dispute, involving his ally Elizabeth Verga, pitted them against the faction led by Baird Jr. and Florence Baker. The 1934 political battle, despite Woodruff’s successful personal campaign, led to the defeat of his slate. This feud had lasting consequences, as it greatly weakened the Republican Party in Camden. The division enabled George Brunner‘s Democrat organization to gain control of Camden’s city government. This shift marked a significant change in Camden’s political landscape, with the Republican Party’s influence waning considerably in the following decades.

Albert S. Woodruff continued to be a presence in local politics but did not seek elected office again. He passed away in 1949, leaving behind a legacy marked by his legal acumen, political involvement, and role in shaping Camden’s financial and political spheres.


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