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Edmund Sixtus Muskie

Gov. Edmund Sixtus Muskie

  • January 5, 1955 - January 2, 1959
  • Democratic
  • March 28, 1914
  • March 26, 1996
  • Maine
  • Bates College, Cornell University
  • Married Jane Gray; five children
  • Resigned, NGA Chair
  • Cabinet secretary
  • Navy


EDMUND S. MUSKIE, the sixty-second governor of Maine, was born in Rumford, Maine on March 28, 1914. His education was attained at Bates College, where he graduated in 1936, and at Cornell University, where he earned his LL.B. degree in 1939. During World War II, he enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served in the Atlantic and Pacific theaters. Muskie entered politics in 1946, serving as a member of the Maine House of Representatives, a position he held until 1952. He also served as the state director of the Office of Price Stabilization from 1951 to 1952 and was a member of the Democratic National Committee from 1952 to 1956. Muskie won the 1954 Democratic gubernatorial nomination, and then went on to win the general election by a popular vote. He was reelected to a second term in 1956. During his tenure, public school and hospital subsidies were increased, a new Department of Development of Commerce and Industry was established, state hospital facilities were modernized, and a 29-million-dollar highway bond issue was sanctioned. Also, the Maine Industrial Building Authority was created, the state sales tax was raised one percent, and the gubernatorial term was changed into a four-year term. Upon his election to the U.S. Senate, Muskie resigned from the governorship on January 2, 1959. He served in his senatorial seat from 1959 to 1980. Muskie was an unsuccessful U.S. vice presidential candidate in 1968 and served as President Carter’s secretary of state from 1980 to 1981. Governor Edmund S. Muskie passed away on March 26, 1996 and was buried at the Arlington National Cemetery in Arlington, Virginia.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 2, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

Biographical Directory of the U.S. Congress

Bates College

Recent Maine Governors