Does Menino Rank as One of Boston’s Greatest Mayors?

Mayor Thomas Menino.

Mayor Thomas Menino will not seek a sixth term, according to at-large Boston politics journalist David Bernstein. Menino reportedly told Fox 25 this morning that it was a tough decision to make.

So ends the longest mayorship in Boston history, and one of the longest in American history (To give you some perspective, long-time Chicago Mayor and political boss Richard J. Daley served 21 years and his son Richard M. Daley has currently served 24 years).

But does a long career guarantee a spot in the Boston mayoral Hall of Fame, like Carlton Fisk’s long career landed him in Cooperstown? Or has Mayor Menino’s accomplishments guaranteed him a slot on the short list of Boston’s greatest mayors?

There are 53 elected mayors in the city’s history, but the conversation of “best mayor” usually starts with James Michael Curley, known as “The Rascal King” and who famously served part of his term while in jail. Other contenders include John “Honey Fitz” Fitzgerald (that’s where the F in JFK comes from. Fitzgerald was John, Robert and Edward’s grandfather) and Kevin White.

What do you think? Was Menino the best mayor in the city’s history? Or was his 20 years a dark period for the city? And legacies aside, does “Hizzonna” rank as one of the all-time great nicknames next to “Rascal King” and “Honey Fitz?” Tell us your thoughts in the comments below.

South End Patch