HERBERT WARREN LADD was born in New Bedford, Massachusetts. After finishing high school, he worked briefly in the dry goods business and then joined the staff of the New Bedford Mercury. After covering the Civil War with several Massachusetts Regiments, he returned to the dry goods business in Boston, later moving to Rhode Island, where he helped to establish the firm of Ladd and Davis, which later became the H.W. Ladd Company. He served as Vice President of the Board of Trade and as President of the Rhode Island Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children. No single candidate received fifty percent of the vote in the gubernatorial election of 1889, as a result of which Ladd was selected governor by the state legislature. He was defeated for a second term in 1890 but returned to win back the governorship one year later—again by selection of the state legislature. During Ladd’s administration, a State Board of Soldiers’ Relief was appointed and the Soldiers’ Home authorized during the gubernatorial administration of Royal Taft was established. After serving his second term, he returned to his business interests.
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. 9. 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.