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Roger Wolcott

Gov. Roger Wolcott

  • March 5, 1896 - January 4, 1900
  • Republican
  • July 13, 1847
  • December 21, 1900
  • Massachusetts
  • Harvard University, Harvard Law School
  • Married Edith Prescott; five children
  • Succeeded
  • Ambassador


ROGER WOLCOTT, the forty-first governor of Massachusetts, was born in Boston, Massachusetts on July 13, 1847. His education was attained at Harvard University, where he earned an undergraduate degree in 1870, and four years later earned a law degree. Wolcott entered politics in 1882, serving as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives, a position he held two years. He also served as the first president of the Massachusetts Republican Club, and was the lieutenant governor of Massachusetts from 1892 to 1896. On March 5, 1896, Governor Frederic T. Greenhalge passed away, and Wolcott, who was the lieutenant governor at the time, assumed the duties of the governorship. He was elected to his own term on November 3, 1896, and won reelection in 1897 and 1898. During his tenure, the Spanish-American War had started; funding was secured for military expenses; and the state’s troops were the first to be deployed to active duty. After completing his term, Wolcott left office on January 4, 1900. He later served as a Republican presidential elector in 1900. Wolcott also declined an appointment as U.S. Ambassador to Italy, as well as turning down an appointment as Commissioner to the Philippines.  Governor Roger Wolcott passed away on December 21, 1900, and was buried in the Mt. Auburn Cemetery in Cambridge, Massachusetts.


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.

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