George Sedgwick was an early attorney in Ann Arbor. He was elected probate judge in 1840, and was the first mayor of Ann Arbor, elected in 1851 after securing the city charter. He was partners in a law firm with James Monroe Walker under the name of Sedgwick and Walker until the firm left to relocate to Chicago in 1853.

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A large, enthusiastic crowd and a brass band at the depot greeted attorney George Sedgwick's return from Lansing with the new city charter. It called for four wards, a mayor, an eight-member common council, greater taxing powers, and authority to establish a police force. Since he was primarily responsible for the passage of the charter, Sedgwick was promptly elected the first mayor, but it took another twenty years for the city to establish a paid police force.