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Silas Alexander Holcomb

Gov. Silas Alexander Holcomb

  • January 3, 1895 - January 5, 1899
  • Populist
  • August 25, 1858
  • April 25, 1920
  • Indiana
  • Married Alice Brinson; three children


SILAS A. HOLCOMB, the tenth governor of Nebraska, was born in Gibson County, Indiana, on August 25, 1858. His education was attained in the common schools of his native state. After moving to Hamilton County, Nebraska, in 1879, Holcomb worked as a farmer and teacher. He eventually studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1882, and then established his legal career in Broken Bow. Holcomb first entered public service as judge of the 12th Judicial District, a position he was elected to in 1891. Holcomb next secured the Populist gubernatorial nomination, and was elected governor by a popular vote in November 1894. He was reelected to a second term in 1896. During his tenure, the Sheldon school land bill was sanctioned; reform policies were initiated in state government programs; fiscal management was endorsed; and corruption in the state treasurer’s office was addressed. After completing his term, Holcomb left office on January 5, 1899. From 1900 to 1906, he served as a Nebraska State Supreme Court justice. He also served as chairman to the Board of Commissioners of State Institutions from 1913 to 1919. Governor Silas A. Holcomb passed away on April 25, 1920, and was buried in the Broken Bow Cemetery in Broken Bow, Nebraska.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 3, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

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