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Marvin Lewis Kline (August 9, 1903 – April 9, 1974) was an architectural engineer and Republican politician who served as the 34th mayor of Minneapolis.

Marvin L. Kline
BornAugust 9, 1903
DiedApril 9, 1974
OccupationArchitectural engineer, Republican politician


Early life and careerEdit

Kline was born in Brunswick, Nebraska in 1903. His family moved to Redwood Falls, Minnesota in 1915 and he went on to attend the University of Minnesota, graduating in 1929 with a degree in architectural engineering. He worked with the Minnesota Department of Transportation and later formed his own company. In 1935, he was elected to the Minneapolis City Council. He was re-elected to a second term in 1939 and became the council's president.[1]


In 1941, Kline was elected mayor. During his time in office he worked with the city of St. Paul, Minnesota and the state government to form the jointly run Metropolitan Airports Commission. Kline was criticized by some (including journalist Arthur Kasherman) of corruption and collusion with the city's criminal underworld. According to a contemporaneous FBI document, the SAC Rhodes of the FBI field office in St. Paul[note 1] was also reported to believe that "Kline is controlled by the racketeers".[3] He was defeated in 1945 by Hubert Humphrey who ran on a platform of law and order and cleaning up the city's government.[1][4][5]

Later life and deathEdit

After leaving office, Kline worked with the Sister Kenny Rehabilitation Institute as their executive director. In 1964, Kline was convicted of grand larceny for illegally boosting his salary as director and for diverting fundraising proceeds from the institute's foundation. He was sentenced to Stillwater Prison for 10 years but released after serving 3 years.[1]

After being released, Kline briefly worked as an engineer at the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant before suffering from a stroke and retiring. Kline died of a heart attack in Ventura, California in 1974. He is buried in Blair, Nebraska.[1][6]


  1. ^ From 1941–1949, what is now the FBI Field Office in Minneapolis was located in St. Paul.[2]


  1. ^ a b c d "M. L. Kline, Ex-Sister Kenny head, dies at 70". Minneapolis Tribune. 14 April 1974.
  2. ^ "FBI Minneapolis History" (HTML). Federal Bureau of Investigation (published May 26, 2016). August 13, 2016. Retrieved 2018-09-24.
  3. ^ Nichols, L. B. (January 19, 1945). Hubert H. Humphrey Part 01 of 32 (PDF) (Government memorandum). The Vault (FBI FOIA Library).  This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the United States Department of Justice.
  4. ^ Solberg, Carl (2003). Hubert Humphrey: A Biography. Minnesota Historical Society Press. ISBN 9780873514736.
  5. ^ "Career of Marvin Lewis Kline". Minnesota Election Trends Project.
  6. ^ "Marvin L. Kline (1903–1974)". Find A Grave.
Political offices
Preceded by
George E. Leach
Mayor of Minneapolis
1941 – 1945
Succeeded by
Hubert Humphrey