CHARLES DEAN KIMBALL was born in Providence, Rhode Island. After receiving a public school education, he went to work for Kimball & Colwell Company, eventually purchasing his father’s interest in the firm and ultimately serving as its Secretary and Treasurer. He was elected to six one-year terms in the Rhode Island House of Representatives starting in 1894, following which he won election as Lieutenant Governor. Upon the death of incumbent governor William Gregory, he became acting governor. Kimball advocated giving the governor veto powers and changing state elections from a biennial to an annual basis, both of which were eventually achieved. In 1902 he called out the militia to quell a railway strike, after which he called a special session of the General Assembly to reform labor laws regarding workday length. It has been argued that this action resulted in Kimball’s defeat in the election of 1902. He went on to serve on the Board of Managers of Rhode Island College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts and received an A.M. degree from the school in 1925. He was also U.S. Food Administrator for Rhode Island during World War I, Colonel of the Providence First Light Infantry Veterans from 1925 to 1929, and President of the Kingstown Town Council for several years.
Mohr, Ralph S. Governors for Three Hundred Years (1638-1954): Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.State of Rhode Island, Graves Registration Committee, August 1954.
The National Cyclopaedia of American Biography, Vol. 25. 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.