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James Putnam Goodrich

Gov. James Putnam Goodrich

  • January 8, 1917 - January 10, 1921
  • Republican
  • February 18, 1864
  • April 15, 1940
  • Indiana
  • De Pauw University
  • Married Cora I. Prist; one child


JAMES PUTNAM GOODRICH, Indiana’s twenty-ninth governor, was born in Winchester, Indiana, on February 18, 1864. For two years he attended De Pauw University, and then went on to study law. He was admitted to the bar in 1887, and established a successful legal and business career in Indianapolis. Goodrich entered politics in 1901, serving as chairman of the Indiana Republican Party, a position he held for nine years. He also served as a member of the Republican National Committee from 1912 to 1916. Goodrich won the 1916 Republican gubernatorial nomination and was sworn into the governor’s office on January 8, 1917. During his tenure, the department of conservation and the state highway commission were initiated, a World War I Memorial was sanctioned, a tax law was enacted, and the state tax board was granted additional authority. Also, the state park system was structured, a prohibition law was passed, as well as a federal women’s suffrage amendment. After leaving office on January 10, 1921, Goodrich was appointed to serve on the 1922 commission that purchased and distributed American food to the Russian famine district. He also served on the Indiana Deep Waterway Commission in 1923, and was a member of the International St. Lawrence Waterways Commission in 1924. Governor James P. Goodrich died on August 15, 1940, and was buried at the Fountain Park Cemetery in Winchester, Indiana.


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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