Francis W. H. Adams

  (Redirected from Francis William Holbrooke Adams)

Francis William Holbrooke Adams (June 26, 1904 – April 20, 1990) was an American lawyer who served as the New York City Police Commissioner from 1954 to 1955.

Francis W. H. Adams
Police Commissioner of New York City
In office
January 1, 1954 – August 2, 1955
MayorRobert F. Wagner Jr.
Preceded byGeorge P. Monaghan
Succeeded byStephen P. Kennedy
United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York
In office
May 16, 1935 – November 20, 1935
PresidentFranklin D. Roosevelt
Preceded byMartin Conboy
Succeeded byLamar Hardy


Adams was born in Mount Vernon, New York on June 26, 1904. He grew up in Saddle River, New Jersey and rode to horseback to school in nearby Ho-Ho-Kus, New Jersey. He graduated from Williams College in 1925 and Fordham Law School in 1928. Upon graduation, he joined the firm O'Brien, Boardman, Memhard, Fox & Early, where he had worked as a clerk while in law school.[1]

In 1934, he became assistant United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.[1][2]

Adams also served as an assistant counsel to the 1963–64 Warren Commission (the "President's Commission on the Assassination of President Kennedy").[3]

He died on April 20, 1990 in Devon, Pennsylvania.[1][4]


  1. ^ a b c Narvaez, Alfonso A. (April 21, 1990). "Francis W.H. Adams, 85, Dies; Led New York City's Police Force". New York Times. p. 29. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  2. ^ Mitchel P. Roth; James Stuart Olson (2001). "Francis W. H. Adams". Historical Dictionary of Law Enforcement. Greenwood Publishing Group. pp. 3–4. ISBN 978-0-313-30560-3.
  3. ^ "Title Page and Letter". Report of the President's Commission on the Assassination of President John F. Kennedy. Washington, D.C.: United States Government Printing Office. 1964. p. v.
  4. ^ "Francis Adams, 85 Former NY Police Commissioner". Boston Globe. April 22, 1990. Archived from the original on November 5, 2012. Retrieved 2011-05-01. Francis W. H. Adams, a New York police commissioner in the 1950s and a leader of the Reform Democratic movement, died Friday of heart failure at a convalescent home in Devon, Pa. He was 85. As police commissioner from January 1954 to July 1955 under Mayor Robert F. Wagner, Mr. Adams abolished desk jobs at police headquarters and eliminated the police band and glee club in efforts to put ...

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Police appointments
Preceded by
George P. Monaghan
NYPD Commissioner
Succeeded by
Stephen P. Kennedy