List of governors of Oregon

This article lists the individuals who have served as Governor of Oregon from the establishment of the Provisional Government between 1841 and 1843 to the present day.

GovernorsEdit

Champoeg MeetingsEdit

The Champoeg Meetings, including a constitutional committee, held from February 1841 until May 1843, served as a de facto government before the government was officially established. While early attempts at establishing a government had been unsuccessful because of discontent between English American and French Canadian settlers over the question, whom they should choose as Governor, several other officers were elected at these meetings, including the position of Supreme Judge as the highest position at the second meeting. For lack of a government the Supreme Judge also received executive and legislative duties and was mostly chosen as the chairman of the following meetings.[1][2]

Executive Term start Term end
  Chairman Jason Lee[3] February 17, 1841
  Chairman David Leslie[4] February 18, 1841
1 Supreme Judge Ira Babcock February 18, 1841 May 2, 1843
Vacant[5] May 2, 1843 July 5, 1843

Provisional GovernmentEdit

The meetings at Champoeg led up to the first constitution of the Oregon Country and several petitions for U.S. territorial status. The resulting acts also created this body as a provisional government for the region. The first executives of this government were a three-person, elected committee known as the Executive Committee. In 1845, elections for a chief executive were held. The first person in Oregon to hold the title of governor was George Abernethy, a prominent businessman.

Executive Term start Term end
1   First Executive Committee
David HillAlanson BeersJoseph Gale
July 5, 1843 May 14, 1844
2   Second Executive Committee
Peter G. StewartOsborne RussellWilliam J. Bailey
May 14, 1844 June 3, 1845
3   George Abernethy June 3, 1845 March 3, 1849[6]

Governors of the Territory of OregonEdit

Oregon became a U.S. Territory in 1848. Like most other U.S. territorial governments, Oregon's territorial governor was appointed by the President of the United States. As transportation and communications were not as reliable or as fast as 21st-century methods, there were times when a departing governor left office and a new governor could not yet take over. This resulted in several local individuals acting as territorial governor until the new executive was appointed and arrived to take office.

President Polk initially appointed Brigadier General James Shields to be Oregon's first territorial governor and Shields was confirmed by the Senate, but he declined the position and Joseph Lane was appointed in his place.

  Democratic (3)       Whig (1)

Governor Took office Left office Appointed by Party
1     Joseph Lane
    December 14, 1801 – April 19, 1881   
(aged 79)
March 3, 1849 June 18, 1850 James K. Polk Democratic
    Kintzing Prichette
    June 24, 1800 – April 12, 1869   
(aged 68)
June 18, 1850 August 18, 1850 Acting Governor Democratic
2     John P. Gaines
    September 22, 1795 – December 9, 1857   
(aged 68)
August 18, 1850 May 16, 1853 Millard Fillmore Whig
    Joseph Lane
    December 14, 1801 – April 19, 1881   
(aged 79)
May 16, 1853 May 19, 1853 Acting Governor Democratic
    George Law Curry
    July 2, 1820 – July 28, 1878   
(aged 58)
May 19, 1853 December 2, 1853 Acting Governor Democratic
3     John W. Davis
    April 16, 1799 – August 22, 1859   
(aged 60)
December 2, 1853 August 1, 1854 Franklin Pierce Democratic
4     George Law Curry
    July 2, 1820 – July 28, 1878   
(aged 58)
August 1, 1854 March 3, 1859 Franklin Pierce Democratic

Governors of the State of OregonEdit

  Democratic (16)       Republican (19)       Independent (1)

Governor Took office Left office Party Terms
[note 1]
1     John Whiteaker
    May 4, 1820 – October 2, 1902   
(aged 82)
March 3, 1859 September 10, 1862 Democratic 1
2     A. C. Gibbs
    July 9, 1825 – December 29, 1886   
(aged 61)
September 10, 1862 September 12, 1866 Republican 1
3   George Lemuel Woods
    July 30, 1832 – January 7, 1890   
(aged 57)
September 12, 1866 September 14, 1870 Republican 1
4   La Fayette Grover
    November 29, 1823 – May 10, 1911   
(aged 87)
September 14, 1870 February 1, 1877 Democratic 1 12
[note 2]
5   Stephen F. Chadwick
    December 25, 1825 – January 15, 1895   
(aged 69)
February 1, 1877 September 11, 1878 Democratic 12
6   W. W. Thayer
    July 15, 1827 – October 15, 1899   
(aged 72)
September 11, 1878 September 13, 1882 Democratic 1
7   Zenas Ferry Moody
    May 27, 1832 – March 14, 1917   
(aged 84)
September 13, 1882 January 12, 1887 Republican 1
8   Sylvester Pennoyer
    July 6, 1831 – May 30, 1902   
(aged 70)
January 12, 1887 January 14, 1895 Democratic 2
9   William Paine Lord
    July 20, 1838 – February 17, 1911   
(aged 72)
January 14, 1895 January 9, 1899 Republican 1
10   Theodore Thurston Geer
    March 12, 1851 – February 21, 1924   
(aged 72)
January 9, 1899 January 15, 1903 Republican 1
11   George Earle Chamberlain
    January 1, 1854 – July 9, 1928   
(aged 74)
January 15, 1903 March 1, 1909 Democratic 1 13
[note 2]
12   Frank W. Benson
    March 20, 1858 – April 14, 1911   
(aged 53)
March 1, 1909 June 17, 1910 Republican 13
[note 3]
13   Jay Bowerman
    August 15, 1876 – October 25, 1957   
(aged 81)
June 17, 1910 January 11, 1911 Republican 13
14   Oswald West
    May 20, 1873 – August 22, 1960   
(aged 87)
January 11, 1911 January 12, 1915 Democratic 1
15   James Withycombe
    March 21, 1854 – March 3, 1919   
(aged 64)
January 12, 1915 March 3, 1919 Republican 1 12
[note 4]
16   Ben W. Olcott
    October 15, 1872 – July 21, 1952   
(aged 79)
March 3, 1919 January 8, 1923 Republican 12
17   Walter M. Pierce
    May 30, 1861 – March 27, 1954   
(aged 92)
January 8, 1923 January 10, 1927 Democratic 1
18   I. L. Patterson
    September 17, 1859 – December 21, 1929   
(aged 70)
January 10, 1927 December 21, 1929 Republican 12
[note 4]
19   A. W. Norblad
    March 19, 1881 – April 17, 1960   
(aged 79)
December 21, 1929 January 12, 1931 Republican 12
20   Julius Meier
    December 31, 1874 – July 14, 1937   
(aged 62)
January 12, 1931 January 14, 1935 Independent 1
21   Charles H. Martin
    October 1, 1863 – September 22, 1946   
(aged 82)
January 14, 1935 January 9, 1939 Democratic 1
22   Charles A. Sprague
    November 12, 1887 – March 13, 1969   
(aged 81)
January 9, 1939 January 11, 1943 Republican 1
23   Earl Snell
    July 11, 1895 – October 28, 1947   
(aged 52)
January 11, 1943 October 30, 1947 Republican 1 13
[note 4]
24   John Hubert Hall
    February 7, 1899 – November 14, 1970   
(aged 71)
October 30, 1947 January 10, 1949 Republican 13
25   Douglas McKay
    June 24, 1893 – July 22, 1959   
(aged 66)
January 10, 1949 December 27, 1952 Republican 13 + ​12
[note 5]
26   Paul L. Patterson
    July 18, 1900 – January 31, 1956   
(aged 55)
December 27, 1952 February 1, 1956 Republican 12 + ​13
[note 4]
27   Elmo Smith
    November 19, 1909 – July 15, 1968   
(aged 58)
February 1, 1956 January 14, 1957 Republican 13
28   Robert D. Holmes
    May 11, 1909 – June 6, 1976   
(aged 67)
January 14, 1957 January 12, 1959 Democratic 13
29   Mark Hatfield
    July 12, 1922 – August 7, 2011   
(aged 89)
January 12, 1959 January 9, 1967 Republican 2
30   Tom McCall
    March 22, 1913 – January 8, 1983   
(aged 69)
January 9, 1967 January 13, 1975 Republican 2
31   Robert W. Straub
    May 6, 1920 – November 27, 2002   
(aged 82)
January 13, 1975 January 8, 1979 Democratic 1
32   Victor Atiyeh
    February 20, 1923 – July 20, 2014   
(aged 91)
January 8, 1979 January 12, 1987 Republican 2
33   Neil Goldschmidt
    (1940-06-16) June 16, 1940 (age 80)
January 12, 1987 January 14, 1991 Democratic 1
34   Barbara Roberts
    (1936-12-21) December 21, 1936 (age 84)
January 14, 1991 January 9, 1995 Democratic 1
35   John Kitzhaber
    (1947-03-05) March 5, 1947 (age 74)
January 9, 1995 January 13, 2003 Democratic 2
36   Ted Kulongoski
    (1940-11-05) November 5, 1940 (age 80)
January 13, 2003 January 10, 2011 Democratic 2
37   John Kitzhaber
    (1947-03-05) March 5, 1947 (age 74)
January 10, 2011 February 18, 2015 Democratic 1 148
[note 6]
[note 7]
38   Kate Brown
    (1960-06-21) June 21, 1960 (age 60)
February 18, 2015 Incumbent
[note 8]
Democratic 1 12

Other high offices heldEdit

This is a table of congressional seats, other federal offices, and other governorships held by governors. All representatives and senators mentioned represented Oregon except where noted.

Denotes those offices that the governor resigned to take.
Governor Gubernatorial term U.S. Congress Other offices held Source
House Senate
Joseph Lane 1848–1850
1853–1853
S Delegate to the U.S. House of Representatives from Oregon Territory [7]
John P. Gaines 1850–1853 U.S. Representative from Kentucky [8]
John W. Davis 1853–1854 U.S. Representative from Indiana; United States Commissioner to China [9]
John Whiteaker 1859–1862 H [10]
George L. Woods 1911–1915 Governor of Utah Territory [11]
La Fayette Grover 1870–1877 H S* [12]
William Paine Lord 1895–1899 United States Minister to Argentina [13]
George Chamberlain 1903–1909 S* [14]
Walter M. Pierce 1923–1927 H [15]
Charles H. Martin 1935–1939 H [16]
Douglas McKay 1949–1952 United States Secretary of the Interior* [17]
Mark Hatfield 1959–1967 S [18]
Neil Goldschmidt 1987–1991 United States Secretary of Transportation [19]

Living former governors of OregonEdit

As of December 2018, there are four former governors of Oregon who are currently living, the oldest governor of Oregon being Barbara Roberts (served 1991–1995, born 1936). The most recent death of a former governor of Oregon and also the death of a former governor of Oregon who served most recently was of Victor Atiyeh, (served 1979–1987) on July 20, 2014.[20]

See alsoEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ The fractional terms of some governors are not to be understood absolutely literally; rather, they are meant to show single terms during which multiple governors served, due to resignations, deaths and the like.
  2. ^ a b Resigned to take an elected seat in the United States Senate
  3. ^ Resigned due to ill health
  4. ^ a b c d Died while in office
  5. ^ Resigned to take the position as United States Secretary of the Interior
  6. ^ Also served two consecutive terms from 1995 to 2003.
  7. ^ Resigned due to an ethics scandal.
  8. ^ Brown's second term began on January 14, 2019, and will expire on January 9, 2023; she will be term-limited.

ReferencesEdit

General

  • "Governors of Oregon". National Governors Association. Archived from the original on June 29, 2011.
  • "Governor Records". Oregon State Archives. Retrieved July 15, 2010.

Constitution

Specific

  1. ^ DR. IRA L. BABCOCK, biography from Oregon Government, retrieved 15 May 2017
  2. ^ A History of Oregon, 1792-1849, retrieved 15 May 2017
  3. ^ Chaired the first Champoeg Meeting.
  4. ^ Chaired the second Champoeg Meeting, during which Babcock was elected Supreme Judge.
  5. ^ Albert E. Wilson was elected Supreme Judge, but declined to serve.
  6. ^ While Abernethy's term officially ended August 14, 1848, he continued to act as Governor until Lane arrived in 1849.
  7. ^ "Lane, Joseph". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  8. ^ "Gaines, John Pollard". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  9. ^ "Davis, John Wesley". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  10. ^ "Whiteaker, John". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  11. ^ "George Lemuel Woods". Utah History to Go. State of Utah. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  12. ^ "Grover, La Fayette". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  13. ^ "Former U.S. Ambassadors to Argentina". Embassy of the United States, Argentina. U.S. Department of State. Archived from the original on May 27, 2010. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  14. ^ "Chamberlain, George Earle". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  15. ^ "Pierce, Walter Marcus". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  16. ^ "Martin, Charles Henry". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  17. ^ "Past Secretaries of the Department of the Interior". U.S. Department of the Interior. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  18. ^ "Hatfield, Mark". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Clerk of the United States House of Representatives and Historian of the United States Senate. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  19. ^ "Biographical Sketches of the Secretaries of Transportation". U.S. Department of Transportation. Retrieved July 15, 2010.
  20. ^ Mapes, Jeff (July 20, 2014). "Republican Vic Atiyeh, who guided Oregon through economic upheaval, dies at 91". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2014-07-20.

External linksEdit