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Governor Charles Clifton Finch

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Office Dates:  Jan 20, 1976 - Jan 22, 1980

Born:  Apr 04, 1927

Passed:  Apr 22, 1986

Birth State:  Mississippi

Party:  Democrat

Family:  Married, four children

School(s):  University of Mississippi

Military Service:  Army

CHARLES CLIFTON (CLIFF) FINCH was born April 4, 1927, in Pope, Mississippi. He received his law degree from the University of Mississippi School of Law in 1958, and served in the U.S. Army during World War II. From 1960-64, Finch was a member of the Mississippi House of Representatives. He also served as district attorney of the 17th Circuit Court District from 1964 to 1972. During his successful 1975 gubernatorial run, Finch donned a hard hat, carried a lunch bucket, sacked groceries and drove bulldozers in his "working man" campaign. He entered the Democratic runoff against William Winter, vanquishing the candidate who would succeed him four years later. In 1976, Finch called a special session of the Legislature to restructure the state's savings and loan associations, averting a financial crisis. He also succeeded in reuniting the long- separated Loyalist and Regular factions of the Mississippi Democratic Party. He built, however temporary, a coalition of black and white voters, and was instrumental in bringing the USA International Ballet Competition to Jackson. After serving as governor, he tried to become president of the United States. Ronald Reagan won. Governor Finch died of a heart attack on April 22, 1986 and he is buried at Magnolia Cemetery in Batesville, Mississippi.


Governors of the American States, Commonwealths, and Territories, National Governors' Conference, 1979.

Political Graveyard

The Clarion-Ledger

Mississippi Historical Society