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The Records of Josaphat T. Benoit, 1947-1960


The Mayoral records of Josaphat T. Benoit, Manchester's longest serving mayor, are limited. Consisting of correspondence and reports, they comprise only four folders.

Biographical Note

Painting from the Collection of the Franco-American Centre
Painting from the Collection
of the Franco-American Centre

Josaphat T. Benoit was born on March 3, 1900 in St. Madeline, Quebec, Canada. He served nine consecutive terms as Mayor of Manchester from 1944 to 1961. This established an all-time record.

Benoit was a well-educated man. He earned an Ph.D in philosophy from Montreal University and another Ph.D from the Sorbonne University of Paris in political economy and sociology. He came to Manchester in 1937 as editor-in-chief of "L'Avenir National", a French daily newspaper and remained at this position until 1943 upon his successful election as mayor.

During Mayor Benoit's many years in office, several new schools were built. A full-time industrial agent and planning director were hired. In 1950 the Grenier Air Force Base was transferred to the City of Manchester to be used as a commercial airfield, and the Airport Authority was created.

After his tenure in office, Benoit accepted a position as director of the Small Business Administration. He held this position until his retirement in 1973. Mayor Benoit died in Manchester on May 14, 1976.

Scope and Content

The papers of Mayor Benoit span the dates 1947 to 1960. Only four subjects are covered: City Planning, the City Library, Building Dedications and the School Department. The location of the majority of his papers is not known.


The Benoit papers are arranged alphabetically by subject and chronologically within each folder.

Administrative Information

The collection was processed by archivist Sally Stephensen in 2000 with biographical information written by Kathy Gardner.


The records are open for research without restrictions under the conditions of the Archives' access policy. Records may be copied for use in administrative, scholarly or personal research. Researchers are responsible for obtaining copyright permission to use the material from the archivist.


The records of Josaphat T. Benoit, Office of the Mayor, City of Manchester, New Hampshire.
Accession 2001.2