List of governors of South Carolina

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Governor of South Carolina
Seal of the Governor of South Carolina.png
SC Governor Henry McMaster 2019 (cropped).jpg
Incumbent
Henry McMaster

since January 24, 2017
Style His Excellency
Term lengthFour years, renewable once consecutively

This is a list of South Carolina governors. The current governor of South Carolina is Henry McMaster who has been in office since January 24, 2017. South Carolina governors are counted only once; therefore, Joseph West, for instance, a colonial governor who served three non-consecutive terms, is considered the 2nd Governor of South Carolina, not the 2nd, 4th, and 7th. There have been 11 governors who served non-consecutive terms. In addition to West, the others were Joseph Morton, Joseph Blake, Robert Johnson, William Bull II, Lord Charles Montagu, John Rutledge, William Moultrie, Charles Pinckney, John Drayton, and Olin D. Johnston.

Colonial period (1670–1775)

Statehood period (1776–present)

Presidents under the Articles of Confederation

The General Assembly chose the president for a term of two years.

Parties

   No party (2)

# President Took Office Left Office Vice President Party Notes
31 John Rutledge color painting.jpg John Rutledge March 26, 1776 March 5, 1778 Henry Laurens No party 1st time, Resigned [a]
32 Rawlins Lowndes.jpg Rawlins Lowndes March 6, 1778 January 9, 1779 James Parsons No party British prisoner
during Revolutionary War

Governors under the Articles of Confederation

The General Assembly chose the governor for a term of two years.

Parties

   Independent (4)    Federalist (2)

Governors of the State of South Carolina (1779 to 1792)
No. Governor Party Term in office Lieutenant Governor Notes
- John Rutledge color painting.jpg John Rutledge Independent January 9, 1779

January 31, 1782
Thomas Bee 2nd time
Christopher Gadsden
33 John Mathews (South Carolina Governor).jpg John Mathews Independent January 31, 1782

February 4, 1783
Richard Hutson
34 No image.svg Benjamin Guerard Independent February 4, 1783

February 11, 1785
Richard Beresford
Vacant
William Moultrie
35 William Moultrie portrait.jpg William Moultrie Independent February 11, 1785

February 20, 1787
Charles Drayton 1st time
36 Thomas Pinckney.jpg   Thomas Pinckney Federalist February 20, 1787

January 26, 1789
  Thomas Gadsden
37 Charles Pinckney.jpg   Charles Pinckney Federalist January 26, 1789

December 5, 1792
  Alexander Gillon 1st time

Governors under the Constitution of 1790

The General Assembly chose the governor for a term of two years.

Parties

   Federalist (3)    Democratic-Republican (15)    Nullifier (Democratic) (3)    Democratic (14)    Confederate Democrat (3)    Unionist Democrat (1)

Governors of the State of South Carolina (1790 to 1865)
No. Governor Party Term in office Lieutenant Governor Notes
- William Moultrie portrait.jpg   William Moultrie Federalist December 5, 1792

December 17, 1794
  James Ladson 2nd time
38 Arnoldus Vanderhorst (South Carolina Governor).jpg   Arnoldus Vanderhorst Federalist December 17, 1794

December 8, 1796
  Lewis Morris
- Charles Pinckney.jpg   Charles Pinckney Democratic-Republican December 8, 1796

December 18, 1798
  Robert Anderson 2nd time
39 Edward Rutledge.jpg   Edward Rutledge Federalist December 18, 1798

January 23, 1800
  John Drayton Died in office
40 JohnDrayton.JPG   John Drayton Democratic-Republican January 23, 1800

December 8, 1802
Vacant 1st time
  Richard Winn
41 James Burchill Richardson.jpg   James Burchill Richardson Democratic-Republican December 8, 1802

December 7, 1804
  Ezekiel Pickens
42 Paul Hamilton SecNavy.jpeg   Paul Hamilton Democratic-Republican December 7, 1804

December 9, 1806
  Thomas Sumter, Jr.
- Charles Pinckney.jpg   Charles Pinckney Democratic-Republican December 9, 1806

December 10, 1808
  John Hopkins 3rd time
- JohnDrayton.JPG   John Drayton Democratic-Republican December 10, 1808

December 8, 1810
  Frederick Nance 2nd time
43 Henry-middleton.jpg   Henry Middleton Democratic-Republican December 8, 1810

December 10, 1812
  Samuel Farrow
44 Joseph Alston.jpg   Joseph Alston Democratic-Republican December 10, 1812

December 10, 1814
  Eldred Simkins
45 David Rogerson Williams (South Carolina Governor).jpg   David Rogerson Williams Democratic-Republican December 10, 1814

December 5, 1816
  Robert Creswell
46 Andrew Pickens, Jr. (South Carolina Governor).jpg   Andrew Pickens Democratic-Republican December 5, 1816

December 8, 1818
  John A. Cuthbert
47 No image.svg   John Geddes Democratic-Republican December 8, 1818

December 7, 1820
  William Youngblood
48 Thomas Bennett Jr.PNG   Thomas Bennett, Jr. Democratic-Republican December 7, 1820

December 7, 1822
  William Pinckney
49 John Lyde Wilson.jpg   John Lyde Wilson Democratic-Republican December 7, 1822

December 3, 1824
  Henry Bradley
50 Richard Irvine Manning I.jpg   Richard Irvine Manning I Democratic-Republican December 3, 1824

December 9, 1826
  William Bull
51 John Taylor South Carolina governor.jpg   John Taylor Democratic-Republican December 9, 1826

December 6, 1828
  James Witherspoon
52 Stephen Decatur Miller.jpg   Stephen Decatur Miller Nullifier (Democratic) December 6, 1828

December 9, 1830
  Thomas Williams
53 James Hamilton, Jr.jpg   James Hamilton, Jr. Nullifier (Democratic) December 9, 1830

December 10, 1832
  Patrick Noble
54 Robert Y Hayne.jpg   Robert Young Hayne Nullifier (Democratic) December 10, 1832

December 9, 1834
  Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
55 George-McDuffie.jpg   George McDuffie Democratic December 9, 1834

December 10, 1836
  Whitemarsh Benjamin Seabrook
56 Pierce Mason Butler.jpg   Pierce Mason Butler Democratic December 10, 1836

December 7, 1838
  William DuBose
57 Patrick Noble.jpg   Patrick Noble Democratic December 7, 1838

April 7, 1840
  Barnabas Kelet Henagan Died in office
58 No image.svg   Barnabas Kelet Henagan Democratic April 7, 1840

December 9, 1840
Vacant Not elected
59 John Peter Richardson II.jpg   John Peter Richardson II Democratic December 9, 1840

December 8, 1842
  William K. Clowney
60 JHHammond.jpg   James Henry Hammond Democratic December 8, 1842

December 7, 1844
  Isaac D. Witherspoon
61 William Aiken.jpg   William Aiken, Jr. Democratic December 7, 1844

December 8, 1846
  J.F. Ervin
62 David Johnson (governor).jpg   David Johnson Democratic December 8, 1846

December 12, 1848
  William Cain
63 Gov-seabrook.jpg   Whitemarsh B. Seabrook Democratic December 12, 1848

December 13, 1850
  William Henry Gist
64 JohnHughMeans.JPG   John Hugh Means Democratic December 13, 1850

December 9, 1852
  Joshua John Ward
65 John-lawrence-manning.jpg   John Lawrence Manning Democratic December 9, 1852

December 11, 1854
  James Irby
66 Portrait of Governor James Hopkins Adams of South Carolina.jpg   James Hopkins Adams Democratic December 11, 1854

December 9, 1856
  Richard de Treville
67 Allston portrait by Flagg small.jpg   Robert F.W. Allston Democratic December 9, 1856

December 10, 1858
  Gabriel Cannon
68 William Henry Gist.jpg   William Henry Gist Democratic December 10, 1858

December 14, 1860
  M. E. Carn
69 Francis Wilkinson Pickens.jpg Francis Wilkinson Pickens Confederate Democrat December 14, 1860

December 17, 1862
W.W. Harllee
70 Hon. Milledge L. Bonham, S.C - NARA - 528412.jpg Milledge Luke Bonham Confederate Democrat December 17, 1862

December 18, 1864
Plowden Weston
Vacant
71 Andrew Gordon Magrath.jpg Andrew Gordon Magrath Confederate Democrat December 18, 1864

May 25, 1865
Robert McCaw Overthrown and imprisoned by the Union Army
Vacant May 25, 1865

June 30, 1865
State government dissolved until reestablished by United States federal government
72 Benjamin Franklin Perry.jpg   Benjamin Franklin Perry Unionist Democrat June 30, 1865

November 29, 1865
Office of Lieutenant Governor temporarily abolished Not elected; appointed by President Andrew Johnson

Post-Civil War Governors through the present

Governors are elected at-large

  • 2-year term, renewable once: 1868-1927
  • 4-year term, not renewable consecutively: 1927-1982
  • 4-year term, renewable once consecutively: 1982-present
Parties

   Democratic (35)    Republican (9)    No party (1)

Governors of the State of South Carolina (1865 to present)
No. Governor Party Term in office Election Lieutenant Governor Notes
73 James Lawrence Orr - Brady-Handy.jpg James Lawrence Orr No Party November 26, 1865

July 6, 1868
1865 W.D. Porter First popularly elected governor
74 Robert Kingston Scott - Brady-Handy.jpg   Robert Kingston Scott Republican July 6, 1868

December 7, 1872
1868   Lemuel Boozer
1868 Alonzo J. Ransier
75 Franklin J. Moses, Jr.jpg   Franklin J. Moses, Jr. Republican December 7, 1872

December 1, 1874
1872   Richard Howell Gleaves
76 Daniel Henry Chamberlain.jpg   Daniel Henry Chamberlain Republican December 1, 1874

December 14, 1876
1874 Lost reelection in 1876 election, but refused to leave office
- Disputed December 14, 1876

April 11, 1877
Disputed between Chamberlain and Wade Hampton III.

Two governments were formed during this time.

77 Wade Hampton III - Brady-Handy.jpg   Wade Hampton III Democratic April 11, 1877

September 26, 1879
1876   William Dunlap Simpson Declared sole governor four months after taking office

Resigned [b]

1878
78 William Dunlap Simpson.jpg   William Dunlap Simpson Democratic February 26, 1879

September 1, 1880
  Vacant Not elected

Resigned [c]

79 Thomas Bothwell Jeter.jpg   Thomas Bothwell Jeter Democratic September 1, 1880

November 30, 1880
Not elected
80 Johnson Hagood.jpg   Johnson Hagood Democratic November 30, 1880

December 1, 1882
1880   John D. Kennedy
81 Hugh Smith Thompson, Governor of South Carolina.jpg   Hugh Smith Thompson Democratic December 1, 1882

July 10, 1886
1882   John Calhoun Sheppard Resigned [d]
1884
82 John Calhoun Sheppard.jpg   John Calhoun Sheppard Democratic July 10, 1886

November 30, 1886
  Vacant Not elected
83 John Peter Richardson III, Governor of South Carolina.jpg   John Peter Richardson III Democratic November 30, 1886

December 4, 1890
1886   William Mauldin
1888
84 Tillman crop.jpg   Benjamin Ryan Tillman Democratic December 4, 1890

December 4, 1894
1890   Eugene Gary
1892   W.H. Timmerman
85 John Gary Evans.jpg   John Gary Evans Democratic December 4, 1894

January 18, 1897
1894
86 William H Ellerbe.jpg   William Haselden Ellerbe Democratic January 18, 1897

June 2, 1899
1896   Miles Benjamin McSweeney Died in office
1898
87 Miles Benjamin McSweeney.jpg   Miles Benjamin McSweeney Democratic June 2, 1899

January 20, 1903
  Robert B. Scarborough
1900
88 Duncan Clinch Heyward.jpg   Duncan Clinch Heyward Democratic January 20, 1903

January 15, 1907
1902   James Tillman
1904 John Sloan
89 Martin Frederick Ansel.jpg   Martin Frederick Ansel Democratic January 15, 1907

January 17, 1911
1906   Thomas Gordon McLeod
1908
90 Coleman L Blease (cropped).jpg   Coleman Livingston Blease Democratic January 17, 1911

January 14, 1915
1910   Charles Aurelius Smith Resigned [e]
1912
91 Charles Aurelius Smith.jpg   Charles Aurelius Smith Democratic January 14, 1915

January 19, 1915
  Vacant Shortest term

Not elected

92 Richard Irvine Manning III circa 1915.jpg   Richard Irvine Manning III Democratic January 19, 1915

January 21, 1919
1914   Andrew Bethea
1916
93 Robert Archer Cooper (South Carolina Governor).jpg   Robert Archer Cooper Democratic January 21, 1919

May 20, 1922
1918   J.T. Lyles Resigned [f]
1920 Wilson Godfrey Harvey
94 No image.svg   Wilson Godfrey Harvey Democratic May 20, 1922

January 16, 1923
  Vacant Not elected
95 ThomasGordonMcLeod.jpg   Thomas Gordon McLeod Democratic January 16, 1923

January 18, 1927
1922   E.B. Jackson
1924
96 John Gardiner Richards, Jr..jpg   John Gardiner Richards, Jr. Democratic January 18, 1927

January 20, 1931
1926   Thomas Bothwell Butler First elected to four-year term [g]
97 No image.svg   Ibra Charles Blackwood Democratic January 20, 1931

January 15, 1935
1930   James Sheppard
98 Olin D. Johnston, seated portrait.jpg   Olin D. Johnston Democratic January 15, 1935

January 17, 1939
1934   Joseph Emile Harley 1st time
99 Burnet R. Maybank.jpg   Burnet R. Maybank Democratic January 17, 1939

November 4, 1941
1938   Resigned [h]
100 Joseph Emile Harley.jpg   Joseph Emile Harley Democratic November 4, 1941

February 27, 1942
  Vacant Not elected

Died in office

Vacant February 27, 1942

March 2, 1942
101 Richard Manning Jefferies.jpg   Richard Manning Jefferies Democratic March 2, 1942

January 19, 1943
Not elected
98 Olin D. Johnston, seated portrait.jpg   Olin D. Johnston Democratic January 19, 1943

January 2, 1945
1942   Ransome Judson Williams 2nd time

Resigned [i]

102 No image.svg   Ransome Judson Williams Democratic January 2, 1945

January 21, 1947
  Vacant Not elected
103 Governor Strom Thurmond.jpg   Strom Thurmond Democratic January 21, 1947

January 16, 1951
1946   George Bell Timmerman, Jr.
104 James F. Byrnes cph.3c32232.jpg   James Francis Byrnes Democratic January 16, 1951

January 18, 1955
1950  
105 SC Gov. George Timmerman.jpg   George Bell Timmerman, Jr. Democratic January 18, 1955

January 15, 1959
1954   Ernest Hollings
106 Ernest Hollings 91st Congress.jpg   Ernest Hollings Democratic January 20, 1959

January 15, 1963
1958   Burnet R. Maybank Jr.
107 DonaldRussell.jpg   Donald Stuart Russell Democratic January 15, 1963

April 22, 1965
1962   Robert Evander McNair Resigned [j]
108 An undated portrait of South Carolina Governor Robert E. McNair.jpg   Robert Evander McNair Democratic April 22, 1965

January 19, 1971
  Vacant
1966   John C. West
109 Gov. John C. West portrait.jpg   John C. West Democratic January 19, 1971

January 21, 1975
1970   Earle Morris, Jr.
110 U.S. Secretary of Energy James Edwards of South Carolina.jpg   James B. Edwards Republican January 21, 1975

January 10, 1979
1974   W. Brantley Harvey, Jr.
111 Portrait of SC Governor Dick Riley.jpg   Richard Riley Democratic January 10, 1979

January 14, 1987
1978   Nancy Stevenson First elected to two consecutive 4-year terms
1982   Michael R. Daniel
112 Campbell, Carroll (cropped).jpg   Carroll A. Campbell, Jr. Republican January 14, 1987

January 11, 1995
1986   Nick Theodore
1990
113 GovernorBeasley.JPG   David Beasley Republican January 11, 1995

January 13, 1999
1994   Bob Peeler Lost reelection
114 Portrait of Jim Hodges.jpg   Jim Hodges Democratic January 13, 1999

January 15, 2003
1998 Lost reelection
115 Mark Sanford, Official Portrait, 113th Congress (cropped).jpg   Mark Sanford Republican January 15, 2003

January 12, 2011
2002   André Bauer
2006
116 Official Photo of SC Governor Nikki Haley (cropped).jpg   Nikki Haley Republican January 12, 2011

January 24, 2017
2010   Ken Ard First female governor

First minority governor
Resigned [k]

  Glenn F. McConnell
2014   J. Yancey McGill
  Henry McMaster
117 SC Governor Henry McMaster 2019 (cropped).jpg   Henry McMaster Republican January 24, 2017

Present
  Kevin Bryant
2018   Pamela Evette

Timeline of Recent Party Control

The timeline below depicts the party control of the governorship since 1970.

Henry McMaster Nikki Haley Mark Sanford Jim Hodges David Beasley Carroll A. Campbell Jr. Richard Riley James B. Edwards John C. West

Party affiliation

Number of governors of South Carolina by party affiliation [l]
Party Governors
Democratic 49
Democratic-Republican 13
Republican 9
Independent 6
Federalist 5
Nullifier 3
Confederate Democrat 3
Unionist Democrat [m] 1

Other high offices held

This is a table of congressional seats, other federal offices, other governorships, and other high offices held by governors after leaving office. All representatives and senators mentioned represented South Carolina except where noted. *denotes those offices which the governor resigned to take.

Governor Gubernatorial term U.S. Congress Other offices held
House Senate
John Rutledge 1776–1778
1779–1782
Delegate to Philadelphia Convention and signer of the United States Constitution; Associate and Chief Justice of the United States Supreme Court
Thomas Pinckney 1787–1789 H United States Minister to Great Britain
Charles Pinckney 1789–1792
1796–1798
1806–1808
H S Delegate to Philadelphia Convention and signer of the United States Constitution; United States Minister to Spain
Paul Hamilton 1804–1806 United States Secretary of the Navy
Henry Middleton 1810–1812 H United States Minister to Russia
David Rogerson Williams 1814–1816 H
Richard Irvine Manning I 1824–1826 H
John Taylor 1826–1828 H S
Stephen Decatur Miller 1828–1830 H S
James Hamilton, Jr. 1830–1832 H
Robert Y. Hayne 1832–1834 S
George McDuffie 1834–1836 H S
John Peter Richardson II 1840–1842 H
James Henry Hammond 1842–1844 H S
William Aiken, Jr. 1844–1846 H
Francis Wilkinson Pickens 1860–1862 H United States Minister to Russia
Milledge Luke Bonham 1862–1864 H Confederate Representative
James Lawrence Orr 1865–1868 H Confederate Senator; United States Minister to Russia; Speaker of the United States House of Representatives
Wade Hampton III 1877–1879 S* United States Railroad Commissioner
William Dunlap Simpson 1879–1880 Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court
Hugh Smith Thompson 1882–1886 United States Assistant Secretary of the Treasury*; United States Civil Service Commissioner
Benjamin Tillman 1890–1894 S
Coleman Livingston Blease 1911–1915 S
Olin D. Johnston 1935–1939
1943–1945
S*
Burnet R. Maybank 1939–1941 S*
Strom Thurmond 1947–1951 S
James F. Byrnes 1951–1955 H S Associate Justice of the United States Supreme Court; United States Secretary of State
Ernest Hollings 1959–1963 S
Donald S. Russell 1963–1965 S*
John C. West 1971–1975 United States Ambassador to Saudi Arabia
James B. Edwards 1975–1979 United States Secretary of Energy
Richard Riley 1979–1987 United States Secretary of Education
Carroll A. Campbell, Jr. 1987–1995 H
David Beasley 1995-1999 Executive Director of the World Food Programme [1]
Mark Sanford 2003–2011 H
Nikki Haley 2011–2017 United States Ambassador to the United Nations*

Living former governors of South Carolina

As of April 2019, there are five former governors currently living, the oldest being Richard Riley (served 1979–1987, born 1933). The most recent governor to die was Fritz Hollings (served 1959–1963, born 1922), on April 6, 2019. [2] The most recently serving governor to die was Carroll A. Campbell Jr. (served 1987–1995, born 1940) on December 7, 2005.

Governor Party Gubernatorial term Birth
Richard Riley Democratic 1979–1987 (1933-01-02) January 2, 1933 (age 87)
David Beasley Republican 1995–1999 (1957-02-26) February 26, 1957 (age 63)
Jim Hodges Democratic 1999–2003 (1956-11-19) November 19, 1956 (age 63)
Mark Sanford Republican 2003–2011 (1960-05-28) May 28, 1960 (age 60)
Nikki Haley Republican 2011–2017 (1972-01-20) January 20, 1972 (age 48)

Notes

  1. ^ The South Carolina legislature proposed a new constitution in 1778. Rutledge vetoed it, stating that it moved the state dangerously close to a direct democracy, which Rutledge believed was only a step away from total anarchy. When the legislature overrode his veto, Rutledge resigned.
  2. ^ Resigned to become United States Senator
  3. ^ Resigned to become Chief Justice of the South Carolina Supreme Court
  4. ^ Resigned to become Assistant Secretary of the Treasury under the Grover Cleveland administration.
  5. ^ Resigned to avoid attending the gubernatorial innaguration of Richard Manning
  6. ^ Resigned to accept position on the Federal Farm Loan Board
  7. ^ Beginning with the election of 1926, governors were elected to a four year term. Governors were unable to serve more than one consecutive term until the election of 1978.
  8. ^ Resigned to become United States Senator
  9. ^ Resigned to become United States Senator
  10. ^ Resigned to become United States Senator
  11. ^ Resigned to become United States Ambassador to the United Nations
  12. ^ This table begins in 1776 with John Rutledge, the 31st governor. This table does not include governors from the colonial period from 1670-1776 when there were no organized parties in South Carolina. This table does not count governors twice; for example, Olin Johnson, who served two non-consecutive terms, is counted as one Democrat.
  13. ^ Not elected; appointed by President Andrew Johnson after the Civil War.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on May 1, 2017. Retrieved May 10, 2017.CS1 maint: archived copy as title ( link)
  2. ^ "Former SC Governor, U.S. Senator Ernest F. 'Fritz' Hollings dies at 97". Retrieved April 6, 2019.

External links