A death allowed this former Snohomish County prosecutor to later become the 4thgovernor of Washington State. Born on February 7, 1856, in Framington, Utah, Henry McBride studied for the Episcopal priesthood at Trinity College in Connecticut, but left school due to illness. He lived in California for two years before moving in 1882 to Oak Harbor, where he taught school for two years in addition to operating the telegraph office and studying law in his spare time. McBride was admitted to the bar in the spring of 1884. He later served as prosecuting attorney for Whatcom, Skagit, and Snohomish Counties. He was serving as Washington State lieutenant governor when Governor John R. Rogers died on December 26, 1900. McBride took the deceased governor’s place, making him the first governor of Washington to be born in the West. A Republican who advocated for reform within his own party, McBride pushed for a Railroad Commission to limit the power of the Great Northern Railway. He also went against the wishes of the Republican leaders by refusing to fire the Regents of the University of Washington. As a result, the Republican Party declined to nominate him for re-election in 1904.
Posts Tagged ‘governor’
Watson Carvasso Squire was a Washington Territory governor who declared martial law during the 1886 anti-Chinese riots in Seattle and Tacoma. Born on May 18, 1838, in Cape Vincent, New York, Watson Squire was the only son of Rev. Orra and Erretta Squire. He graduated from Wesleyan University in 1859 and soon became principal of the Moravia Institute. When the Civil War broke out in 1861, the 23-year-old enlisted, but after engaging in several skirmishes, was honorably discharged in October of that same year. After graduating from Cleveland Law School in June 1862, he rejoined the military and, during the next three years, escorted General Sherman on his march to the sea and participated in the battles of Nashville, Chickamauga, Resaca, and Missionary Ridge. After the war, Squire joined E. Remington & Sons arms manufacturer and, in 1886, married Ida Remington, daughter of company president Philo Remington. Development of the breech-loading rifle led to a great demand for their product both in the U.S. and abroad. As a member of the Republican Executive and Finance Committees, Squire became acquainted with Presidents James Garfield and Chester Arthur. After purchasing undeveloped properties in the Seattle area from his father-in-law, Squire moved to Seattle in 1879 to work on their development. In 1884, Squire sold his interest in Remington & Sons and was appointed by President Arthur to serve as governor of Washington Territory for the next three years. While in office, Gov. Squire was faced with the task of maintaining law and order during the anti-Chinese riots, which began in 1885. On February 8, 1886, he declared martial law until order was restored two weeks later. In 1889, he was elected U.S. senator of the new State of Washington, whereby Sen. Squire worked to secure a naval station at Bremerton. In 1894, Remington’s former partners contested Squire’s ownership of the Seattle properties he had purchased, but lost the lawsuit against Squire. At the time, the properties were valued at about one million dollars.
Bertha considered the community just another extension of her home, so it seemed perfectly natural for her to get very involved in civic matters. She held positions of leadership in several women’s organizations, including the Women’s University Club, the League of Women Voters, and president of the Women’s Century Club. In 1921, as president of the Seattle Federation of Women’s Clubs, Landes organized a weeklong manufacturers’ exhibit staffed by more than one thousand clubwomen, which bolstered the spirits of the business community during a severe recession and led to her appointment as the only woman on a five-member commission to study unemployment in the city. When commenting about his wife’s decision to run for City Council in 1922, Henry stated, “…in principle, there’s no difference between running one home and a hundred thousand.” By 1926, Seattle had suffered from several years of scandals and widespread corruption in its government. Landes ran for Mayor early that year on a platform that stressed “municipal housekeeping,” calling on citizens to turn in bootleggers and offering $1 per year to those who would report reckless drivers.
On March 9, 1926, Landes was elected mayor of Seattle, becoming the first woman to govern a large American city. During her honest administration, regulations for Seattle dance halls and cabarets were enforced, only qualified professionals were appointed to head city departments, and the city’s financial house was put in order. Despite her success in office, Landes lost her bid for re-election in 1928 under the then-popular sentiment that a city of stature should be led by a man. Perhaps it is ironic then, that her male successor, Frank E. Edwards, was recalled in 1931 by angry voters.
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