Mary Walsh Kobus was one of the first female politicians to rise to prominence in Camden NJ. Born Mary Walsh in New Jersey around 1876, she married well known Camden businessman Joseph Kobus around 1910, and was the daughter-in-law of Anthony Kobus, who founded the Kobus shoe business and also served as president of the the Broadway Trust Bank at Broadway and Walnut Streets. After women won the right to vote, Mary Kobus involved herself in politics. She also studied law, and was the only female graduate in 1930 from the South Jersey Law School, now a part of Rutgers University, in Camden NJ.
Mary Kobus was elected to the City Commission on May 1, 1935. She was a Democrat and a political ally of George M. Brunner, who served as Mayor of Camden from 1935 through 1959. When a recount added Frank Hartmann Jr. to the Commission, the balance of power shifted, and Mary Kobus was named director of public safety, and George Brunner replaced Frederick Von Nieda as mayor. Von Nieda sued to keep his position, but his suit was rejected in the New Jersey State Supreme Court.
Mary Kobus and her husband, Joseph Kobus, lived at 429 Haddon Avenue in Camden. Joseph Kobus passed away in June of 1939. Mary Kobus continued to serve in Camden city government after his passing.
Politically active, Arthur Colsey served on City Council from the Second Ward from 1907 to 1911, as well as serving in the Camden Police Dept, eventually serving as Chief.
Andrew Scarduzio was a political player in Camden who was killed at a bar in Bellmawr NJ.
Frank M. Lario, Sr.
Frank M. Lario was a 1930 graduate of the South Jersey Law School in Camden. A gifted artist, he drew several sketches for the school yearbook.
Mary W. Kobus
Mary Walsh Kobus was one of the first female politicians to rise to prominence in Camden NJ.
6th Ward Group Backs Leadership of Kobus
Support of City Commissioner Mary W. Kobus as “leader of the Republican Party in Camden County” is pledged in a resolution adopted by the Sixth Ward Republican Association, meeting in headquarters of the Camden County Republican Association, 506 Broadway.
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