Albert G. Schmedeman : biography
Albert George Schmedeman (November 25, 1864 – November 26, 1946) was an American politician who served as the 28th Governor of Wisconsin. To date he is the only mayor of Madison to be elected Governor of Wisconsin.
Schmedeman was born in Madison, Wisconsin, the son of Heinrich Schmedeman, a "Forty-Eighter" from Germany. Albert Schmedeman was elected to the Madison City Council in 1904, serving for four years. He also served the community as fire and police commissioner, and as a member of the local board of education.
A Democrat, Schmedeman ran for a seat in the United States House of Representatives in 1910 but lost to John M. Nelson. In 1913 he was appointed the United States Minister to Norway and held this position until 1921. During that time, Schmedeman accepted the Nobel Peace Prize on behalf of President Woodrow Wilson in 1919.
After concluding his service as Minister to Norway, Schmedeman planned to retire from politics, but was, instead, elected mayor of Madison, serving from 1926 to 1932. In 1932 he was elected Governor of Wisconsin and served from 1933 to 1935. His term was both preceded and succeeded by Philip La Follette, son of former governor Robert M. La Follette, Sr.
In 1934, while attending the dedication for Rib Mountain State Park and campaigning for a second term, Schmedeman slipped on some loose rock and injured his foot. Gangrene developed, necessitating the amputation of his leg.
After his service as governor concluded, Schmedeman went on to be named Federal Housing Administrator for Wisconsin by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, a post that he held from 1935 until 1942.
Schmedeman was fluent in German and also proficient in the Norwegian language.
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