This site utilizes JavaScript to enhance the user interface and productivity for users. Ensure you have Java Script enabled in your browser to take full advantage. Monrad Charles Wallgren

Governor Monrad Charles Wallgren

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Office Dates:  Jan 13, 1945 - Jan 10, 1949

Born:  Apr 17, 1891

Passed:  Sep 18, 1961

Birth State:  Iowa

Party:  Democrat

Family:  Married Mabel C. Liberty

School(s):  Washington State School of Optometry

National Office(s) Served:  Representative, Senator

Military Service:  Coast Guard, National Guard

Born in Des Moines, Iowa, MONRAD CHARLES WALLGREN moved to Galveston, Texas as a child and then to Everett, Washington after the Galveston hurricane of 1900. He graduated from the Washington State School of Optometry in Spokane in 1914 and engaged in the retail jewelry and optometry business until 1933. He was elected to four terms in the U.S. House of Representatives, and won a seat in the U.S. Senate from which he resigned after serving four years in order to make what became a successful run for governor in 1944. During his gubernatorial administration, he established unemployment compensation in the state. He also advocated public ownership of electrical power production and supported a state recreation and tourist program. Wallgren lost his bid for reelection in 1948, after which President Harry Truman sought to appoint him to the National Security Resources Board. However, his appointment was blocked in the Senate as a result of the strong opposition of a Republican Senator from his own state. Truman withdrew the nomination and instead appointed Wallgren to the Federal Power Commission, on which he served as Chairman until 1951. After retiring from public life, he was involved in real estate development in California. He died in Olympia and was buried in Everett, Washington.


Official Records at Washington State Archives, 1945-1949, 8.5 cubic feet.

List of finding aids available at the Division of Archives and Records Management, Office of the Secretary of State. Available in hard copy: Guide to the Papers of the Governors of Washington, Volume 3: 1919-1957—Governor Hart through Governor Langlie.

The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Vol. G. New York: James T. White & Company.

Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 4. Westport, CT: Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

Washington State Library: Governors of Washington State