Wagner, Robert F. (Robert Ferdinand), 1910-

Biography:

American Democratic Party politician and mayor of New York City (1954-65). After being elected mayor in 1954, Wagner, a soft-spoken man, fortified his popularity with the voters for such acts as granting collective-bargaining rights to municipal labour unions, demolishing slums, and commissioning public housing. He also promoted the arts, helping to establish the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, engaging in the fight to save Carnegie Hall from demolition, and introducing free Shakespearean productions in Central Park. His civil-rights record was uneven; he appointed members of minority groups to government posts, but his administration pursued a policy of suppressing homosexuals and their gathering places. -- Encyclopaedia Britannica.

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