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Elbert Nortrand Carvel

Gov. Elbert Nortrand Carvel

  • January 18, 1949 - January 20, 1953
    January 17, 1961 - January 19, 1965
  • Democrat
  • February 9, 1910
  • February 6, 2005
  • New York
  • Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, University of Baltimore Law School, Johns Hopkins University
  • Married Ann Hall Valliant; four children


ELBERT NORTRAND CARVEL, Delaware’s 53rd and 56th Governor, was born in Shelter Island Heights, New York, on February 9, 1910. In 1928 he graduated from the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, earning an engineering degree. He also earned a LL.B. from the University of Baltimore Law School in 1931, and he attended Johns Hopkins University, where he studied accounting. He rose quickly in the business world, becoming treasurer, director, and then president of the Valliant Fertilizer Company. He also served as director and president for several other corporations and boards. Carvel entered politics in 1944, as lieutenant governor of Delaware, an office he held for four years. He also served as a delegate to the 1948 Democratic National Convention. He won the 1948 Democratic gubernatorial nomination and was elected governor of Delaware. He was reelected to a second term in 1960. During his tenure, election laws were restructured, and a public service commission and state development department were established. Also, a $28-million appropriation was granted for the construction of schools, teacher’s salaries were increased, and funding was approved for road and highway development. The Interstate Compact on Mental Health was authorized, and the Delaware River and Bridge Authority and the Municipal Home Rule Law were sanctioned. Carvel’s term ended on January 19, 1965, and he retired from public service.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 1, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.


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