People who were around New York from 1910 to 1913 may remember Gaynor as the Mayor who was shot in the neck by a would-be assassin, survived to continue his job as mayor, the bullet lodged in his throat, until his death during his term in 1913. Apart from this dramatic feature of his career, Gaynor was significant and unique at this time in his refusal to compromise or play along with party politics. An individualist and nonconformist, taciturn, irascible, scholarly, he had a deep sense of the law as a public servant but his intransigent individualism and utter refusal to compromise, coupled with an unusual ability to make and keep enemies, interfered with his political rise and reform program. This biography, ""a lean statement"" of the known facts, interprets him largely through the verifiable record of his later life which was to brush up against such figures as Hearst, Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt. A specialized book, of local, political interest.