Maine's Governors

Since William King was inaugurated as Maine’s first governor on June 2, 1820, the state has been led by 70 men and one woman. The position held today by Janet Trafton Mills has been occupied by such notable figures in our history as Hannibal Hamlin, Abraham Lincoln’s first vice president; Abner Coburn, generous benefactor to Maine educational institutions; Joshua L. Chamberlain, Civil War hero at the Battle of Gettysburg; Percival P. Baxter, donor of Mount Katahdin to the state; and Edmund S. Muskie, champion of Federal environmental protection legislation.

Only two governors are not represented by pictures. Of the balance, four are shown in portraits and the rest in photographs. Photographic images dating back to the 1840s enable us to study with complete clarity the faces of the men who governed Maine during the first decades of statehood before the Civil War as well as their more recent successors. These pictures come from three sources, the Maine State Archives, the Maine Historical Society, and the Maine Historic Preservation Commission.

These pages are based upon research which I initially undertook in 2001 assisted by the Commission’s summer intern Adam M. Crowley of the University of Maine at Orono, now an Assistant Professor of English at Husson College in Bangor. At that point, the project was envisioned as a publication, but the ever expanding use of the internet during the last decade has led me to offer this information to a broader online audience. I want to thank the Friends of the Blaine House for hosting this information. 

Earle G. Shettleworth, Jr.
Maine State Historian


Governor Hugh J. Anderson

Hugh J. Anderson

DATE OF BIRTH:  May 10, 1801
PLACE OF BIRTH:  Wiscasset
DATE OF DEATH:  May 31, 1881
TERM IN OFFICE:  January 5, 1844 – May 19, 1847
FIRST LADY:  Martha J. Dummer

QUOTE: The road from the Aroostook river to Fort Kent, a distance of forty-five miles, and which was previously unpassable for carriages, has been thoroughly repaired, and the road from Masardis, connected with it, has been also essentially improved.

Inaugural Address, January 5, 1844

OTHER ELECTED OR APPOINTED OFFICES: Clerk of Courts for Waldo County, Congressman, Commissioner of Customs for the U.S. Treasury, Chairman of the Commission on the San Francisco Mint, Auditor of the U. S. Treasury


Biographical Encyclopedia of Maine of the 19th Century.  Boston: Metropolitan Publishing and Engraving Company, 1885, pp. 109-114.

Chase, Henry.  Representative Men of Maine.  Portland: The Lakeside Press, 1893, p. XXV.

Eastern Argus, Portland, June 1, 1881

Williamson, Joseph.  History of the City of Belfast.  Portland: Loring, Short and Harmon, 1877, pp. 203-204.




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