Louisiana Division
New Orleans Public Library
Administrations of the Mayors of New Orleans
Joseph Valsin Guillotte (1850-1917)
Joseph Valsin Guillotte was the thirty-eighth Mayor of New Orleans. Born in Jeffersosn Parish, Louisiana, June 29, 1850, the son of William Guillotte and Pauline Schexnaidre Guillotte, he moved with his family to New Orleans where they settled in the Ninth Ward and he was identified with that section of the city thereafter.

He began his career as a clerk and his remarkable skill as a penman is always spoken of by those who remember him. He first sprang into prominence as a leader of the White League and Commander of one of the companies that took part in the battle of September 14, 1874 which overthrew the Metropolitan Police and ended the carpetbag rule in Louisiana. His services on that occasion have never been forgotten.

He was City Comptroller during the Behan Administration and succeeded Behan in office, serving as mayor of the city from 1884 to 1888. After completing his term as mayor, he was admitted to the bar, passing the examination before the State Supreme Court. He practiced law for several years as a member of the firm of Kerr, Duvigneaud and Guillotte. He also was a member of the State Senate during the Foster and Sanders Administrations and was serving as Assistant Secretary of the Police Department at the time of his death.

During his administration the Cotton Centennial Exposition was held here. This exposition which was a success in every respect, except financially, was the direct cause of drawing the people’s attention to the upper portion of the city, known as Carrollton, as a desirable residential section and immediately after the exposition a movement was started to build up that vast area, with the result that New Orleans gained very greatly in population and attractiveness. He also headed the delegation which brought the Liberty Bell to New Orleans for the exposition. The only landmark remaining today of Carrollton as an incorporated town in Jefferson Parish, is the Courthouse erected in 1855. This building was converted into a public school and is known today as McDonogh School No. 23.

In 1884, the old records particularly stressed the poor illumination of the streets and the limited Board of Health facilities; also the fact that the city was policed in a manner which made discipline impossible. The sensational Murphy murder, will not soon be forgotten. At that time Murphy was employed by the Department of Public Works. Through the ability of District Attorney Lionel Adams, the guilty men were hanged, but as they had been given poison while in jail they were practically dead on the day of their execution.

Mr. Guillotte married Ezilba Bernard, daughter of John B. Bernard and Camille Robert Bernard. The death of his wife on January 14, 1917 caused him to grieve so greatly that it impaired his health and he died June 24, 1917 at the age of 67, survived by four sons and three daughters. The funeral was conducted from his residence, 3155 Burgundy Street, and he lies buried in the St. Vincent de Paul Cemetery.

Members of the Guillotte Administration
April 29, 1884-April 23, 1888

Name Office District Notes
Holt, Joseph, Dr. Board of Health

Bower, E. L. Chief Clerk

Rogers, Walter S. City Attorney

Forstall, E., Mrs. City Hall Archives
Culbertson, Mary C., Mrs. City Library
Taylor, J. D. City Notary

Brosman, D. M. City Surveyor

McNamara, M. Clerk of Commission Council

Mealey, P. Commissioner of Police and Public Buildings

Fitzpatrick, John Commissioner of Public Works

Hardy, J. N. Comptroller

Finney, James S., Dr. Coronor's Office

Maunsel, E. D. Councilman 7 Representative District
Burke, Ed. Councilman 2 Representative District
Lehman, Hy. Councilman 2 Representative District
Huhner, Geo., M. D. Councilman 2 Representative District
Moon, W. H. Councilman 3 Representative District
Lord, Geo. H. Councilman 3 Representative District
McManus, H. Councilman 3 Representative District
Mauberret, V. Councilman 4 Representative District
Albert, Hy. Councilman 5 Representative District
Patorno, A. Councilman 5 Representative District
Mullen, P. Councilman 1 Representative District
Saucier, A. D. Councilman 7 Representative District
Prague, Jos. B. Councilman 7 Municipal District
Carroll, Michael Councilman 8 Representative District
Miller, Hy. C. Councilman 9 Representative District
Devron, G. Councilman 9 Representative District
Sliger, Jno. E. Councilman 10 Representative District
Farrell, Peter Councilman 10 Representative District
McCarthy, Christy Councilman 11 Representative District
Garidel, Joe Councilman 6 Representative District
Israel, E. L. Councilman 1 Municipal District
Zeller, Louis Councilman 14 Representative District
Walshe, B. T. Councilman 13 Representative District
Stoulig, J. P. Councilman 13 Representative District
Winn, A. C. Councilman 12 Representative District
Brennan, James A. Councilman 11 Representative District
Carey, Thos. Councilman 6 Municipal District
Amann, N. Councilman 5 Municipal District
Kilpatrick, D. M. Councilman 4 Municipal District
Ryan, T. H. Councilman 3 Municipal District
Prados, A., Jr. Councilman 2 Municipal District
Bauman, Emile Councilman 15 Representative District
O'Connor, Thomas Fire Department
Chief Engineer
Davey, R. C. Recorder
First Court
Ford, Thos. J. Recorder
Second Court
Mooney, T. J. Recorder
Fourth Court
Keller, A. P. Recorder
Third Court
Buisson, T. Secretary

Bachemin, Zacharie Superintendent of Police

Patton, I. W. Treasurer

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