Archives of Maryland
(Biographical Series)

John B. Gontrum (1890-1963)
MSA SC 3520-13443


Born April 1, 1890 in Baltimore.  Son of John F. and Mary Helen (Biddison) Gontrum.  Attended The Johns Hopkins University 1908-09; University of Maryland School of Law, LL.B., 1912.  Admitted to the Maryland bar, 1911.  Married Mary Antoinette von Wyszecki, June 16, 1915; one son:  John Holt Gontrum.  Methodist.  Died May  26, 1963 in Maryland.

Practiced law in Baltimore, 1911-43.  Chief judge, Appeal Tax Court, Baltimore, 1923-26.  Part owner and publisher of the weekly newspaper, the Union News of Towson, 1928-45.  Maryland secretary of state, 1939.  State insurance commissioner, 1939-43.  Owner and manager of a dairy farm, 1939-63.  Associate judge, Third Judiciary Circuit Court, 1943-55; chief judge, 1955-60.  Helped plan and create Gunpowder State Park, 1954.  Helped found the Child Study Center of Maryland; member of the board until 1963.  Member, Maryland State and Baltimore County Bar Associations.  Member, Barristers' Club; Wednesday Law Club (Baltimore); Bar-Lodge of Masons.  Member, Andrews Methodist Chapel.  Interests included foreign travel, English literature and poetry.

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