Francis B. Fay

For the female singer, see Frances Faye.
For other people with the same name, see Frank Fay (disambiguation).
Francis Ball Fay
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 2nd district
In office
December 13, 1852 – March 3, 1853
Preceded by Robert Rantoul, Jr.
Succeeded by Samuel L. Crocker
1st Mayor
of Chelsea, Massachusetts
In office
Preceded by Board of Selectmen
Succeeded by Hosea Ilsley
Member of the Massachusetts Senate
In office
Personal details
Born June 12, 1793
Southboro, Massachusetts
Died October 6, 1876(1876-10-06) (aged 83)
South Lancaster, Massachusetts
Political party Whig
Spouse(s) Nancy Brigham[1]
Children Frank B. Fay

Francis Ball Fay (June 12, 1793 – October 6, 1876) was a United States merchant and politician. He served as U.S. Representative from Massachusetts.


He was born in Southboro, Massachusetts. His parents were poor, and he had little education. At the age of 18, he “bought his time” of his father for $80 a year. He attended the public scales in Dock Square, Boston, in 1811-12, then served as market man and butcher, and in 1817 became a merchant in Southborough.

He was postmaster of Southboro from September 15, 1817, to March 29, 1832. He was deputy sheriff of Worcester County 1824–1830. He served as member of the Massachusetts General Court in 1830 and 1831. He moved to Chelsea, which he represented in the Massachusetts General Court from 1834 to 1836 and in 1840. He served in the State Senate 1843–1845 and again in 1848.

Fay was elected as a Whig to the Thirty-second Congress to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Robert Rantoul, Jr., and served from December 13, 1852, to March 3, 1853. He was not a candidate for the Thirty-third Congress. Fay served as the first Mayor of Chelsea in 1857. He endowed the public library in Southboro, Massachusetts, in 1851. He settled in Lancaster in 1858 to be closer to the state industrial school for girls he had helped found, and with which he was connected as commissioner, trustee, and treasurer, 1854-64. He was again a member of the State Senate in 1868. He died in South Lancaster, Massachusetts, October 6, 1876. He was interred in Woodlawn Cemetery, Everett, Massachusetts.


  1. Rand, John Clark (1890), One of a Thousand: a Series of Biographical Sketches of One Thousand Representative Men, Boston, MA: First National Publishing Company, p. 209.


United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
Robert Rantoul, Jr.
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from Massachusetts's 2nd congressional district

December 13, 1852 – March 3, 1853
Succeeded by
Samuel L. Crocker
Political offices
Preceded by
Board of Selectmen
1st Mayor of Chelsea, Massachusetts
Succeeded by
Hosea Ilsley

 This article incorporates public domain material from the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress website

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