Welcome to the Governors' Gallery!

This website is a tribute to the individuals who have served as chief executive of the State of California from the birth of the state in 1849 to the present. Our state's governors lead the largest state in the union and their political influence reaches beyond the borders of the state.

Governors' Gallery contains a portrait, a biography, and inaugural addresses for each governor. The biographies provide a brief glimpse into the rich political and personal life of each governor.

Thank you to the California Department of General Services, which gave permission to use the images of the official portraits.

This site is constantly being updated as more information about the Governors is found. Please check back often to learn more fascinating tidbits about California's Governors. Comments and suggestions for the Governors' Gallery should be sent to Governors' Gallery at the California State Library.

Peter Burnett

Peter Burnett (1849-1851)

Born: November 15, 1807 in Nashville, TN
Died: May 17, 1895 in San Francisco, CA
Married: Harriet Burnett on August 20, 1828 in Bolivar, TN
Children: Dwight, Martha, Romeetta, Armstead and Sallie
Political Party: Independent Democrat

John McDougal

John McDougal (1851-1852)

Born: Around 1818 in Ross County, Ohio
Died: March 30, 1866 in San Francisco
Married: Jane Palmer on July 13, 1841
Children: Sue, Caroline, Latham, William and Lillie
Political Party: Independent Democrat

John Bigler

John Bigler (1852-1856)

Born: January 8, 1805 in Carlisle, PA
Died: November 29, 1871 in Sacramento, CA
Married: Elizabeth Graham
Children: Virginia
Political Party: Independent Democrat

J. Neely Johnson

J. Neely Johnson (1856-1858)

Born: August 2, 1825 in Johnson Township, IN
Died: August 31, 1872 in Salt Lake City, UT
Married: Mary Zabriskie on June 26, 1851
Children: William and Bessie
Political Party: American (Know-Nothing)

John Weller

John Weller (1858-1860)

Born: February 22, 1812 in Montgomery, Ohio
Died: August 17, 1875 in New Orleans, Louisiana
Married: Elizabeth Brockelbank Staunton on June 20, 1854
Children: Charles, John and William
Political Party: Democrat

Milton Latham

Milton Latham (Jan 9-14, 1860)

Born: May 23, 1827 in Columbus, Ohio
Died: March 4, 1882 in New York City, New York
Married: Sophie Birdsall on October 1, 1853 in San Francisco, California, 2nd wife - Mary McMullen
Children: Milton Latham from second marriage
Political Party: Lecompton Democrat

John Downey

John Downey (1860-1862)

Born: June 24, 1827 in Roscommon County, Ireland
Died: March 1, 1894
Married: Maria Guirado in 1852
Children: None
Political Party: Lecompton Democrat

Leland Stanford

Leland Stanford (1862-1863)

Born: March 9, 1824 in Watervliet, New York
Died: June 21, 1893 in Palo Alto, California
Married: Jane Lathrop on Sept 30, 1850 in Albany, NY
Children: Leland Stanford, Jr.
Political Party: Republican

Frederick Low

Frederick Low (1863-1867)

Born: June 30, 1828 in Frankfort (now Winterport), Maine
Died: July 21, 1894 in San Francisco, California
Married: Mary Mollie Creed on December 22, 1857
Children: Flora
Political Party: Unionist

Henry Haight

Henry Haight (1867-1871)

Born: May 20, 1825 in Rochester, NY
Died: September 2, 1878 in San Francisco, CA
Married: Anna E. Bissell on January 24, 1855
Children: Janette, Mary, Dugald, Henry H., Jr., Louis
Political Party: Democrat

Newton Booth

Newton Booth (1871-1875)

Born: December 30, 1825 in Salem, IN
Died: July 14, 1892 in Sacramento, CA
Married: Ocativine C. Grover on February 9, 1892
Children: None
Political Party: Republican ("Dolly Vardens")

Romualdo Pacheco

Romualdo Pacheco (Feb - Dec 1875)

Born: October 31, 1831 in Santa Barbara, CA
Died: January 23, 1899 in Oakland, CA
Married: Mary McIntyre on October 31, 1863
Children: Maybella Ramona and Romualdo, Jr.
Political Party: Republican

William Irwin

William Irwin (1875-1880)

Born: around 1827 in Butler County, OH
Died: March 15, 1886 in San Francisco, CA
Married: Amelia Cassidy on Dec 21, 1865 in Yreka, CA
Children: Emma
Political Party: Democrat

George Perkins

George Perkins (1880-1883)

Born: August 23, 1839 in Kennebunkport, Maine
Died: February 26, 1923 in Oakland, California
Married: Ruth Parker on May 3, 1864 in Marysville, CA
Children: Fannie, George, Susan, Fred, Milton, Ruth May and Grace Pansy
Political Party: Republican

George Stoneman

George Stoneman (1883-1887)

Born: August 8, 1822 in Busti, Chautauqua County, NY
Died: September 5, 1894 in Buffalo, New York
Married: Mary Hardisty on Nov 22, 1871 in Baltimore, MD
Children: Cornelius, George, Jr., Katherine and Adele
Political Party: Democrat

Washington Bartlett

Washington Bartlett (1887-1887)

Born: February 29, 1824 in Savannah, Georgia
Died: September 12, 1887 in Oakland, California
Political Party: Democrat

Robert Waterman

Robert Waterman (1887-1891)

Born: December 15, 1826 in Fairfield, New York
Died: April 12, 1891 in San Diego, California
Married: Jane Gardner on Sept 29, 1847 in Belvedere, IL
Children: Mary, James, Helen, Waldo, Anna and Abby
Political Party: Republican

Henry Harrison Markham

Henry Harrison Markham (1891-1895)

Born: November 16, 1840 in Wilmington, New York
Died: October 9, 1923 in Pasadena, California
Married: Mary Dana on May 17, 1876 in Waukesha, WI
Children: Marie, Alice, Gertrude, Genevieve, and Hildreth
Political Party: Republican

James Budd

James Budd (1895-1899)

Born: May 18, 1851 in Janesville, Wisconsin
Died: July 30, 1908 in Stockton, CA
Married: Inez Merrill on October 29, 1873
Children: None
Political Party: Democrat

Henry Gage

Henry Gage (1899-1903)

Born: December 25, 1852 in Geneva, NY
Died: August 28, 1924 in Los Angeles, CA
Married: Francisca V. Rains on July 15, 1880
Children: Fanita, Lucilla, Francis, Volney, Arthur, Henry
Political Party: Republican

George Pardee

George Pardee (1903-1907)

Born: July 25, 1857 in San Francisco, California
Died: September 1, 1941 in Oakland, California
Married: Helen Penniman on January 25, 1887
Children: Florence, Carol, Madeline and Helen
Political Party: Republican

James Gillett

James Gillett (1907-1911)

Born: September 20, 1860 in Viroqua, Wisconsin
Died: April 20, 1937 in Oakland, California
Married: Isabella Erzgraber on May 8, 1898
Children: Effie, Ethel, Horace, and James
Political Party: Republican

Hiram Johnson

Hiram Johnson (1911-1917)

Born: September 2, 1866 in Sacramento, CA
Died: August 6, 1945 at the Bethesda Naval Hospital, MD
Married: Minnie L. McNeal in 1886
Children: Hiram and Archibald
Political Party: Republican

William Stephens

William Stephens (1917-1923)

Born: December 26, 1859 in Eaton, Ohio
Died: April 24, 1944 in Los Angeles, California
Married: Flora Rawson on June 17, 1891 in Poway, CA
Children: Barbara
Political Party: Republican

Friend Richardson

Friend Richardson (1923-1927)

Born: December 14, 1864 in Washtenaw, Michigan
Died: September 6, 1943 in Berkeley, California
Married: Augusta F. Felder on July 23, 1891
Chidlren: Ruth, Paul and John
Political Party: Republican


C. C. Young (1927-1931)

Born: April 28, 1869 in Lisbon, New Hampshire
Died: December 24, 1947 in Berkeley, California
Married: Lyla Vincent on March 15, 1902
Children: Barbara and Lucy
Political Party: Republican

James Rolph

James Rolph (1931-1934)

Born: August 23, 1869 in San Francisco, California
Died: June 2, 1934 in Santa Clara County, California
Married: Annie Reid on June 26, 1900
Children: Annette, James and Georgina
Political Party: Republican

Frank Merriam

Frank Merriam (1936-1939)

Born: December 22, 1865 in Hopkinton, Iowa
Died: April 25, 1955 in Long Beach, California
Married: Jessie Millisack Lipsey on January 25, 1936
Children: Frank Howard (with 1st wife, Nellie E. Boronson-Day)
Political Party: Republican

Culbert Olson

Culbert Olson (1939-1943)

Born: November 7, 1876 in Fillmore, Utah
Died: April 13, 1962 in Los Angeles, California
Married: Kate Jeremy in 1905
Children: Richard, Dean and John
Political Party: Democrat

Earl Warren

Earl Warren (1943-1953)

Born: March 19, 1891
Died: July 9, 1974
Married: Nina Palmquist Meyers on October 4, 1925
Children: James (adopted son from Ms. Meyer's first marriage), Virginia, Earl, Jr., Dorothy, Nina and Robert
Political Party: Republican

Goodwin Knight

Goodwin Knight (1954-1959)

Born: December 9, 1896 in Provo, UT
Died: May 22, 1970 in Inglewood, CA
Married: Virginia Carlson on Aug 2, 1954 in Beverly Hills, CA
Children: Carolyn and Marilyn (with 1st wife, Arvilla Cooley)
Political Party: Republican

Edmund G. 'Pat' Brown

Edmund G. "Pat" Brown (1959-1967)

Born: April 21, 1905 in San Francisco, California
Died: February 16, 1996 in Beverly Hills, California
Married: Bernice Layne on October 30, 1930 in Reno, NV
Children: Jerry, Kathleen, Cynthia, Barbara
Political Party: Democrat

Ronald Reagan

Ronald Reagan (1967-1975)

Born: February 6, 1911 in Tampico, Illinois
Died: June 5, 2004 in Los Angeles, California
Married: Nancy Davis on March 4, 1952
Children: Maureen and Michael (with 1st wife, Jane Wyman), Patricia and Ronald (with 2nd wife, Nancy Davis)
Political Party: Republican

Jerry Brown

Edmund G. "Jerry" Brown (1975-1983)

Born: April 7, 1938 in San Francisco, California
Married: Anne Gust on June 18, 2005 in Oakland, CA
Children: None
Political Party: Democrat

George Deukmejian

George Deukmejian (1983-1991)

Born: June 6, 1928 in Menands, New York
Married: Gloria M. Saatjian
Children: Leslie, Andrea, George
Political Party: Republican

Pete Wilson

Pete Wilson (1991-1999)

Born: August 23, 1933 in Lake Forest, IL
Married: Gayle Edlund on May 29, 1983
Children: Todd and Philip
Political Party: Republican

Gray Davis

Gray Davis (1999-2003)

Born: December 26, 1942 in Bronx, NY
Married: Sharon Ryer
Children: None
Political Party: Democrat

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger (2003-2011)

Born: July 30, 1947 in Thal, Austria
Married (separated in 2011): Maria Shriver on April 26, 1986
Children: Katherine, Christina, Patrick and Christopher
Political Party: Republican

Jerry Brown

Edmund G. "Jerry" Brown (2011-present)

Born: April 7, 1938 in San Francisco, California
Married: Anne Gust on June 18, 2005 in Oakland, CA
Children: None
Political Party: Democrat

This section dedicated to the women who acted as First Lady from the birth of the State of California in 1849 to the present.

First Ladies

Current First Lady

List of First Ladies