Gerhard Adolph Bading | Wisconsin Historical Society

Historical Essay

Bading, Gerhard Adolph (1870 - 1946)

Gerhard Adolph Bading

Gerhard Adolph Bading | Wisconsin Historical Society
Dictionary of Wisconsin History.

Gerhard Adolph Bading was a physician, politician, and diplomat born in Milwaukee. He was educated at Northwestern University, Watertown, and Rush Medical College, Chicago and received his MD in 1896.

He taught at Milwaukee Medical College from 1897 until 1901 and Wisconsin College of Physicians and Surgeons from 1901 until 1907. While Bading was Milwaukee health commissioner from 1906 until 1910, he proposed the licensing of stores where food was handled, commercially prepared, or offered for sale, and advocated for the establishment of tuberculosis hospitals and tuberculin tests for cows from which the city drew its milk supply.

During his incumbency, medical inspection of school children was initiated. In 1912 and 1914 Bading was elected mayor of Milwaukee on the Non-partisan ticket, a coalition of Republicans and Democrats formed to defeat the Socialist mayor Emil Seidel. In 1916 dissension within Nonpartisan ranks, Bading's veto of an 8-hour workday ordinance, delayed public projects, and alleged corrupt influence by corporate interests led to his defeat by Daniel Hoan. He was appointed minister to Ecuador by President Harding in 1922 and served in the State Department until 1930.

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[Source: Dictionary of Wisconsin biography]