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Governors 1777 to Present Day
by John T. Marck



 
 
 

 
 
 

Governors

1777 - To Present Day

By the Maryland Constitution of 1776, the governor was chosen annually by a joint ballot of both houses of the General Assembly (Md. Const. 1776, section 25). The governor was required to be at least 25 years of age; a state resident for at least five years prior to the election; and was required to hold real and personal property in the state having a value of five thousand pounds or more, one thousand of which was to be freehold estate (Md. Const. 1776, section 30). The governor was limited to three successive one-year terms and in the four years thereafter could not serve again (Md. Const. 1776, section 31).

The first popular election for governor was held October 3, 1838, in accordance with a 1837 constitutional amendment (Acts of 1836, chapter 197). Per this amendment the state was divided into three gubernatorial election districts:

1st District (Eastern District)

Caroline, Cecil, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne's, Somerset, Talbot and Worcester Counties.

2nd District (Northwestern District)

Allegany, Baltimore, Carroll, Frederick, Harford and Washington Counties.

3rd District (Southern District)

Baltimore City, Anne Arundel, Calvert, Charles, Montgomery, Prince George's, St. Mary's Counties.

The governor was to be elected every three years by the voters of one gubernatorial district, on a rotating basis. This process of voters from a single gubernatorial district selecting the governor continued through the election of 1864.

The Maryland Constitution of 1851 continued the system of gubernatorial election districts. It raised the minimum age of candidates to thirty. The governor was required to have been a U.S. citizen and state resident for five years, and a resident of the district from which he was elected for three years. The term of the governor was lengthened to four years (Md. Const. 1851, Article 2. secs. 1, 6).

Gubernatorial election districts were eliminated by the 1864 Constitution. Thereafter, beginning with the election of 1868, the governor was elected by vote of the entire state's electorate. The 1864 Constitution also ended district residency requirements for candidates (Md. Const. 1864, Article 2, sec. 5).

The Maryland Constitution of 1867 required the governor to have been a citizen of the state of Maryland for ten years, a Maryland resident for five years, and a qualified voter at the time of the election (Md. Const. 1867, Article 2, sec.5).

The governor was limited to two consecutive terms by constitutional amendment ratified in 1948 (Acts of 1947, ch.109).

In 1970, a constitutional amendment required that the governor be a resident and registered voter of the state for only five years preceding the election (Acts of 1970, ch. 532).

GOVERNORS, 1777-1839

Elected by Legislature for one-year term under Constitution of 1776

1777-1779

Thomas Johnson - No Political Party

Born: November 4, 1732, Calvert County.

Died: October 26, 1819, Rose Hill, Frederick County

Buried: All Saints' Parish Cemetery, Frederick, Md.

1779-1782

Thomas Sim Lee - No Political Party

Born: October 29, 1745, Prince George's County.

Died: October 9, 1819, Needwood, Frederick, County.

Buried: Mt. Carmel Cemetery, Upper Marlboro, Prince George's County.

1782-1785

William Paca - No Political Party

Born: October 31, 1740, Abingdon, Harford County.

Died: October 13, 1799, Wye Hall, Queen Anne's County.

Buried: Wye Hall, Queen Anne's County.

1785-1788

William Smallwood - No Political Party

Born: 1732, Charles County.

Died: February 14, 1792, Mattawomen, Charles County.

Buried: Smallwood's Retreat, Charles County.

1788-1791

John Eager Howard - Federalist

Born: June 4, 1752, Baltimore, Md.

Died: October 12, 1827, Baltimore City.

Buried: Old St. Paul's Cemetery, Baltimore.

1791-1792

George Plater - Federalist

Born: November 8, 1735, St. Mary's County

Died: February 10, 1792, Annapolis

Buried: Sotterley, St. Mary's County(1)

1792-1794

Thomas Sim Lee - (see above 1779-1782).

1794-1797

John Hoskins Stone - Federalist

Born: 1750, Charles County

Died: October 5, 1804, Annapolis, Md.

Buried: Annapolis, Md.

1797-1798

John Henry - Federalist

Born: November 1750, Weston, Dorchester County

Died: December 16, 1798, Weston, Dorchester County

Buried: Christ Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Cambridge, Md.

1798-1801

Benjamin Ogle - Federalist

Born: January 27, 1749, Annapolis, Md.

Died: July 6, 1809, Annapolis, Md.

Buried: Annapolis, Md.

1801-1803

John Francis Mercer - Democrat

Born: May 17, 1759, Marlborough, Stafford County, Virginia.

Died: August 30, 1821, Philadelphia, Pa.

Buried: Cedar Park, Anne Arundel County.

1803-1806

Robert Bowie - Democrat

Born: March 1750, Mattaponi, Prince George's County.

Died: January 8, 1818, Mattaponi, Prince George's County.

Buried: Mattaponi, Prince George's County.

1806-1809

Robert Wright - Democrat

Born: November 20, 1752, Queen Anne's County.

Died: September 7, 1826, Blakeford, Queen Anne's County.

Buried: Cheston-on-Wye, Queen Anne's County.(2)

1809-1811

Edward Lloyd - Democrat

Born: July 22, 1779, Talbot County.

Died: June 2, 1834, Annapolis, Md.

Buried: Wye House, Talbot County.(3)

1811-1812

Robert Bowie (see above 1803-1806).

1812-1816

Levin Winder - Federalist

Born: September 4, 1757, Somerset County.

Died: July 1, 1819, Baltimore City.

Buried: Monie Creek, Somerset County.

1816-1819

Charles Ridgely of Hampton(4)- Federalist

Born: December 6, 1760, Baltimore County.

Died: July 17, 1829, Hampton, Baltimore County.

Buried: Hampton, Baltimore County.

1819

Charles Goldsborough - Federalist

Born: July 15, 1765, Hunting Creek, Dorchester County.

Died: December 13, 1834, Shoal Creek, Dorchester County.

Buried: Christ Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Cambridge.

1819-1822

Samuel Sprigg - Democrat

Born: 1783, Prince George's County.

Died: April 21, 1855, Northampton, Prince George's County.

Buried: Oak Hill Cemetery, Georgetown, Washington, D.C.

1822-1826

Samuel Stevens, Jr. - Democrat

Born: July 13, 1778, Talbot County.

Died: February 7, 1860, Compton, near Trappe, Talbot County.

Buried: Stevens family Cemetery, Talbot County.(5)

1826-1829

Joseph Kent - Democrat

Born: January 14, 1779, Calvert County.

Died: November 24, 1837, Rosemount, Prince George's County.

Buried: Rosemount, Prince George's County.

1829-1830

Daniel Martin - Anti-Jackson

Born: 1780, The Wilderness, Talbot County.

Died: July 11, 1831, Talbot County.

Buried: Spring Hill Cemetery, Easton, Talbot County.

1830-1831

Thomas King Carroll - Jackson Democrat

Born: April 29, 1793, Kingston Hall, Somerset County.

Died: October 3, 1873, Dorchester County.

Buried: Old Trinity Church graveyard, Church Creek, Dorchester County.

1831

Daniel Martin (see above 1829-1830).(6)

1831-1833

George Howard - Anti-Jackson

Born: November 21, 1789, Annapolis, Md.

Died: August 2, 1846, Waverly, Howard County.

Buried: Old St. Paul's Cemetery, Baltimore City.

1833-1836

James Thomas - Anti-Jackson

Born: March 11, 1785, De La Brooke Manor, St. Mary's County.

Died: December 25, 1845, Deep Falls, St. Mary's County.

Buried: Deep Falls, St. Mary's County.

1836-1839

Thomas W. Veazey - Whig

Born: January 31, 1774, Cecil County.

Died: July 1, 1842, Cecil County.

Buried: Family Cemetery, Cherry Grove, Cecil County.

GOVERNORS, 1839-1854

Elected by voters for three-year term under Constitution of 1776, amended 1837.(7)

1839-1842

William Grason - Democrat

Born: March 11, 1788, Queen Anne's County.

Died: July 2, 1868, Queen Anne's County.

Buried: Queenstown, Queen Anne's County.

1842-1845

Francis Thomas - Democrat

Born: February 3, 1799, Frederick County.

Died: January 22, 1876, Frankville, Garrett County.

Buried: St. Mark's Episcopal Church Cemetery, Petersville, Frederick County.

1845-1848

Thomas G. Pratt - Whig

Born: February 18, 1804, Georgetown, Washington, D.C.

Died: November 9, 1869, Baltimore City.

Buried: St. Anne's Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Annapolis, Md.

1848-1851

Philip Francis Thomas - Democrat

Born: September 12, 1810, Easton, Talbot County.

Died: October 2, 1890, Baltimore City.

Buried: Spring Hill Cemetery, Easton, Talbot County.

1851-1854

Enoch Louis Lowe - Democrat

Born: August 10, 1820, Frederick County.

Died: August 23, 1892, New York.

Buried: Catholic Cemetery, Frederick.

GOVERNORS, 1854-1866

Elected by voters for four-year term under Constitution of 1851(8)

1854-1858

Thomas Watkins Ligon - Democrat

Born: May 10, 1810, Farmville, Prince Edward County, Virginia.

Died: January 12, 1881, Chatham, Howard County.

Buried: Family cemetery, Howard County.

1858-1862

Thomas Holliday Hicks - Native American

Born: September 2, 1798, Dorchester County.

Died: February 13, 1865, Washington, D.C.

Buried: Cambridge Cemetery, Dorchester County.

1862-1866

Augustus W. Bradford - Unionist

Born: January 9, 1806, Bel Air, Harford County.

Died: March 1, 1881, Baltimore City.

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City.

GOVERNORS, 1866-1869

Elected by voters for four-year term under Constitution of 1864(9)

1866-1869

Thomas Swann - Unionist

Born: 1806, Alexandria, Virginia.

Died: July 24, 1883, Leesburg, Virginia.

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City.

GOVERNORS, 1869 to Present

Elected by voters for four-year term under Constitution of 1867

1869-1872

Oden Bowie - Democrat

Born: November 10, 1826, Prince George's County

Died: December 4, 1894, Fairview, Prince George's County

Buried: Fairview, Prince George's County

1872-1874

William Pinkney Whyte - Democrat

Born: August 9, 1824, Baltimore City

Died: March 17, 1908, Baltimore City

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City

1874-1876

James Black Groome - Democrat

Born: April 4, 1838, Cecil County

Died: October 4, 1893, Baltimore City

Buried: Presbyterian Cemetery, Elkton, Cecil County

1876-1880

John Lee Carroll - Democrat

Born: September 30, 1830, Baltimore City

Died: February 27, 1911, Washington, D.C.

Buried: Bonnie Brae Cemetery, Howard County

1880-1884

William T. Hamilton - Democrat

Born: September 8, 1820, Washington County

Died: October 26, 1888, Hagerstown, Md.

Buried: Rose Hill Cemetery, Hagerstown, Washington County

1884-1885

Robert M. McLane - Democrat

Born: June 23, 1815, Wilmington, Delaware

Died: April 16, 1898, Paris, France

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City(10)

1885-1888

Henry Lloyd - Democrat

Born: February 21, 1852, Dorchester County

Died: December 30, 1920, Cambridge, Md.

Buried: Christ Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Cambridge, Dorchester County

1888-1892

Elihu E. Jackson - Democrat

Born: November 3, 1837, Somerset County

Died: December 27, 1907, Baltimore City

Buried: Parsons Cemetery, Salisbury, Md.

1892-1896

Frank Brown - Democrat

Born: August 8, 1846, Carroll County

Died: February 3, 1920, Baltimore City

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City

1896-1900

Lloyd Lowndes - Republican

Born: February 21, 1845, Clarksburg, West Virginia

Died: January 8, 1905, Cumberland, Md.

Buried: Rose Hill Cemetery, Cumberland, Allegany County

1900-1904

John Walter Smith - Democrat

Born: February 5, 1845, Worcester County

Died: April 19, 1925, Baltimore City

Buried: Presbyterian Cemetery, Snow Hill, Worcester County

1904-1908

Edwin Warfield - Democrat

Born: May 7, 1848, Howard County

Died: March 31, 1920, Baltimore City

Buried: Family burial ground, Cherry Grove, Howard County

1908-1912

Austin L. Crothers - Democrat

Born: May 17, 1860, Cecil County

Died: May 25, 1912, Elkton, Md.

Buried: West Nottingham Presbyterian Cemetery, Cecil County

1912-1916

Phillips Lee Goldsborough - Republican

Born: August 6, 1865, Cambridge, Dorchester County

Died: October 22, 1946, Baltimore City

Buried: Christ Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Cambridge, Dorchester County

1916-1920

Emerson C. Harrington - Democrat

Born: March 26, 1864, Dorchester County

Died: December 15, 1945, Cambridge, Md.

Buried: Christ Protestant Episcopal Church Cemetery, Cambridge, Dorchester County

1920-1935

Albert C. Ritchie - Democrat

Born: August 29, 1876, Richmond, Virginia

Died: February 24, 1936, Baltimore City

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City(11)

1935-1939

Harry W. Nice - Republican

Born: December 5, 1877, Washington, D.C.

Died: February 24, 1941, Richmond, Virginia

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City

1939-1947

Herbert R. O'Conor - Democrat

Born: November 17, 1896, Baltimore City

Died: March 4, 1960, Baltimore City

Buried: New Cathedral Cemetery, Baltimore City(12)

1947-1951

William Preston Lane, Jr. - Democrat

Born: May 12, 1892, Washington County

Died: February 7, 1967, Hagerstown, Md.

Buried: Rose Hill Cemetery, Hagerstown, Md.(13)

1951-1959

Theodore R. McKeldin - Republican

Born: November 20, 1900, Baltimore City

Died: August 10, 1974, Baltimore City

Buried: Green Mount Cemetery, Baltimore City

1959-1967

J. Millard Tawes - Democrat

Born: April 8, 1894, Somerset County

Died: June 25, 1979, Crisfield, Md.

Buried: Sunny Ridge Memorial Park, Crisfield, Somerset County(14)

1967-1969

Spiro T. Agnew - Republican

Born: November 9, 1918, Baltimore City

Resigned: January 7, 1969(15)

1969-1979

Marvin Mandel - Democrat

Born: April 19, 1920, Baltimore City(16)

Lieutenant Governors(17)

Lieutenant Governor: 1971-1979 Blair Lee III

Born: Silver Spring, Md., May 16, 1916

Died: October 25, 1985

1979-1987

Harry R. Hughes - Democrat

Born: November 13, 1926, Easton, Talbot County

Lieutenant Governor: 1979-1982; Samuel W. Bogley

Born: Washington, D.C., November 16, 1941

Lieutenant Governor: 1983-1987; J. Joseph Curran, Jr.

Born: West Palm Beach, Florida, July 7, 1931

1987-1994

William Donald Schaefer - Democrat

Born: November 2, 1921, Baltimore City

Lieutenant Governor: 1987-1994; Melvin A. Steinberg

Born: Baltimore City, October 4, 1933

1994-2003

Parris N. Glendening - Democrat

Born: June 11, 1942, Bronx, New York

Lieutenant Governor: Kathleen Kennedy Townsend(18)

Born: July 4, 1951.

2003-2007

Robert L. Ehrlich - Republican

Born: November 25, 1957, Baltimore (Arbutus), Maryland

Lieutenant Governor: Michael S. Steele(19)

Born: October 19, 1958, Andrews Air Force Base, PG County, Maryland
 

2007 - 2015

Martin J. O'Malley - Democrat

Born: January 18, 1963, District of Columbia

Lieutenant Governor: Anthony G. Brown

Born: November 21, 1961, Huntington, New York

2015 to Present

Lawrence Joseph "Larry" Hogan - Republican

Born: May 25, 1956, District of Columbia

Lieutenant Governor: Boyd Rutherford

Born: April 1, 1957, District of Columbia

 

1. James Brice (1746-1801) became acting governor on the death of Governor Plater on February 10, 1792. He served until April 2, 1792, when Thomas Sim Lee was elected for the balance of the unexpired term.

2. Governor Wright resigned on May 6, 1809. James Butcher of Queen Anne's County became acting governor. He served until June 5, 1809, when Edward Lloyd qualified.

3. By Acts of 1811, chapter 211, ratified in 1812, the date of the election of the governor was changed from the second Monday in November to the second Monday in December.

4. Charles Ridgely of Hampton was named Charles Ridgely Carnan at birth. In 1790, he legally assumed the name Charles Ridgely in compliance with the terms of the will of his uncle, Captain Charles Ridgely.

5. By Acts of 1823, chapter 111, ratified in 1824, the date for holding the election for governor was changed to the first Monday in January.

6. Governor Martin died in office on July 11, 1831. George Howard succeeded him. Governor Howard completed Governor Martin's term, which expired in January 1832 and was subsequently elected by the legislature for a one-year term.

7. By Acts of 1836, chapter 197, ratified in 1837, the term of the governor was extended to three years.

8. Under the Constitution of 1851, the term of the governor began on the second Wednesday in January following his election and was for four years.

9. The only election held under this constitution was on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 1864.

10. Governor McLane resigned on March 27, 1885. Henry Lloyd, who was president of the Senate, succeeded him as acting governor until January 21, 1886, when the legislature elected him to complete the remainder of McLane's term.

11. Acts of 1922, chapter 227, provided for quadrennial elections. The governor elected in November 1923 held office for three years. Beginning with the election held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November 1926, elections were held in the even-numbered years which were not presidential election years.

12. Governor O'Conor resigned on January 3, 1947 to accept a seat in the United States Senate. William Preston Lane, Jr.,was elected by the legislature on January 3 of that year to complete the unexpired term. Governor Lane was inaugurated on January 3 for the remainder of Governor O'Conor's term and on January 8, 1947, for the full four-year term.

13. Acts of 1947, chapter 109, established a two-term limit for each governor.

14. Acts of 1964, chapter 161, changed the date of the beginning of the governor's term to the fourth Wednesday in January following his election.

15. Governor Agnew resigned on January 7, 1969, having been elected vice-president of the United States. Marvin Mandel was elected by the General Assembly on the same day to fill the balance of Governor Agnew's term, which expired in January 1971. Governor Mandel was subsequently elected by the voters to a full four-year term on November 3, 1970.

16. Acts of 1970, chapter 576, changed the date of the beginning of the governor's term to the third Wednesday in January following his election. By a letter dated June 4, 1977, Governor Mandel notified Lieutenant Governor Blair Lee III that Lee would serve as acting governor until further notice according to the terms of Article 2, Section 6b, of the Maryland Constitution of 1867. Lee continued to act in the capacity of acting governor until January 15, 1979, when Mandel rescinded his letter of June 4, 1977, two days before the expiration of his second full elective term. Governor Mandel also designated Lee acting governor for a brief period on January 16, to, permit Lee to preside at the installation of Rita C. Davidson to the Court of Appeals.

17. The office of lieutenant governor was created by the Constitution of 1864. The lieutenant governor served as president of the Senate, and acted as governor in case of the death, resignation, removal from the state, or other disqualification. The only incumbent of that office under the Constitution of 1864 was Christopher C. Cox, who was elected on November 8, 1864, took the oath of office on January 11, 1865, and served until January 8, 1868. The Constitution of 1867 did not provide for a lieutenant governor. The office was reestablished by a constitutional amendment ratified on November 3, 1970.

18. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend is the daughter of Robert F. Kennedy, and is Maryland's first woman lieutenant governor.

19. Michael Steele was the first African American to serve in a Maryland state-wide office and the first Republican lieutenant governor in the state since the position was reestablished in 1970. He was, at the time, the highest-ranking elected African American Republican in the United States.

 

Copyright© John T. Marck. All Rights Reserved. This article and their accompanying pictures, photographs, and line art, may not be resold, reprinted, or redistributed for compensation of any kind without prior written permission from the author. From Maryland The Seventh State A History, by John T. Marck. Copyright © John T. Marck, All Rights Reserved.

  

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