Open main menu

John L. Bacon (November 3, 1878 – April 25, 1961) was a civil engineer and Republican politician from California.

John L. Bacon
Mayor Bacon.jpg
18th Mayor of San Diego
In office
May 2, 1921 – May 2, 1927
Preceded byLouis J. Wilde
Succeeded byHarry C. Clark
Personal details
BornNovember 3, 1878
DiedApril 25, 1961 (aged 82)
San Diego
Political partyRepublican

Bacon was born in 1878 in Illinois. By 1914, he was in San Diego, when he was on a Panama-California Exposition committee. He was a structural engineer and helped lay out the aquatic features of the San Diego Zoo.

Bacon was elected mayor of San Diego, serving from 1921 to 1927. An important issue of the day was the construction of water projects to enable San Diego to grow and prosper. After problems with water development, and as property valuations (and therefore taxes) increased, confidence in Bacon declined enough that in 1928 Bacon declined to seek re-election.

During and after his term as mayor, Bacon was president of Boulder Dam Association, a group that promoted funding for the construction of Hoover Dam, and was seeking a share of Colorado River water for use by Southern California cities.

Bacon died in 1961 in the city of San Diego.


I would rather see 100 tourists come to San Diego, spend a month or a season, be busy every minute with healthful, outdoor entertainment, and go back home to tell their relatives and neighbors that San Diego is the greatest town in America than to have 10,000 tourists come, stay 24 hours, and go away "knocking" because they had a dull time.

— Speaking in favor of the proposed San Diego Zoo, 1922
Political offices
Preceded by
Louis J. Wilde
Mayor of San Diego, California
Succeeded by
Harry C. Clark