C. A. Robins

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C. A. Robins
22nd Governor of Idaho
In office
January 6, 1947 – January 1, 1951
Lieutenant Donald S. Whitehead
Preceded by Arnold Williams
Succeeded by Len Jordan
Personal details
Born Charles Armington Robins
(1884-12-08)December 8, 1884
Defiance, Iowa
Died September 20, 1970(1970-09-20) (aged 85)
Lewiston, Idaho
Resting place Lewis Clark Memorial Gardens
Lewiston, Idaho
Nationality United States
Political party Republican
Spouse(s) Marguerite S. Granberry
(m.1919–1938, her death),
Olive Patricia Simpson
(m. 1939–1970, his death)
Children 3 daughters (w/ Simpson)
Residence St. Maries, Lewiston
Alma mater William Jewell College, 1907
Rush Medical College, 1917
Profession Physician
Religion Episcopalian
Military service
Allegiance  United States
Service/branch U.S. Army
Years of service 1918
Rank First Lieutenant
Unit Medical Corps
Battles/wars World War I

Charles Armington Robins (December 8, 1884 – September 20, 1970) was a physician and the 22nd Governor of Idaho.

Early years[edit]

Born in Defiance, Shelby County, Iowa, Robins graduated in 1907 from William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri and taught high school in Missouri, Colorado, Montana, and Mississippi. He entered medical school in 1913 at Rush Medical College of the University of Chicago, working various night jobs to put himself through, and earned his M.D. in 1917.[1]


During World War I, Robins entered the Medical Corps of the U.S. Army in August 1918 as a first lieutenant. He ended his military service on December 16, 1918,[1] Given free transportation by the Great Northern Railway to look at two towns that needed physicians, he left Chicago the following week. He arrived in St. Maries, Idaho on Christmas Eve and chose it over Three Forks, Montana, and stayed for 28 years, until elected governor.[2][3] For a generation, Robins delivered nearly every baby in Benewah County.[4]

Robins was a member of the state senate from 1939 to 1945. He ran for governor in 1946,[5] and was the first in Idaho to be elected to a four-year term; all previous governors had been elected to two-year terms.[6] He handily defeated the incumbent, Arnold Williams, who gained the office when the previous governor, Charles Gossett, resigned after ten months so Williams could appoint him to the vacant seat in the U.S. Senate.

Idaho Gubernatorial Elections: Results 1946
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct
1946 Arnold Williams (inc.) 79,131 43.6% C. A. Robins 102,233 56.4%
  • Williams was elected as lieutenant governor in 1944, and became governor in 1945.

The new four-year term disallowed self-succession (re-election) until 1958,[7] so Robins and his Republican successor in 1950, Len Jordan, served single four-year terms and retired from office.

Robins was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1948 while in office as governor. He ran for the U.S. Senate in 1950, but was defeated in the primary by Herman Welker. After he left the governor's office in 1951, Robins moved his residence from St. Maries to Lewiston and became the medical director of the north Idaho district of the Medical Service Bureau, known today as Regence Blue Shield.[2]


Robins died at age 85 in Lewiston on September 20, 1970,[8] and is interred at Lewis Clark Memorial Gardens in Lewiston.[9] He was a member of the American Legion, the American Medical Association, Phi Gamma Delta fraternity, and Freemasons.


He married Marguerite Sherman Granberry on July 8, 1919, in Hazlehurst, Mississippi; she died in 1938 and they had no children. He married Patricia Simpson of St. Maries, one of his nurses, in November 1939 and they had three daughters: Patricia, Paula, and Rebecca.[10]


  1. ^ a b "C. A. Robins". Ancestry.Com. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  2. ^ a b Alford, A.L., Jr. (September 23, 1998). "Former governor made his mark on Idaho education". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 1A. 
  3. ^ "C.A. Robins dies in Idaho". Deseret News. September 21, 1970. p. 4B. 
  4. ^ Carlson, Chris (October 16, 2011). "Idaho's post-war pilot". Lewiston Tribune. Retrieved March 13, 2013. 
  5. ^ "C.A. Robins for Governor". Lewiston Morning Tribune. advertisement. October 24, 1946. p. 10. 
  6. ^ "C. A. Robins". Idaho Genealogy Trails. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  7. ^ Corlett, John (March 31, 1963). "It's mystery whay law barring self-succession not repealed". Lewiston Morning Tribune. p. 5. 
  8. ^ "Former Gov. C.A. Robins dies of infirmities at age 85". Lewiston Morning Tribune. September 21, 1970. p. 14. 
  9. ^ "C. A. Robins". Find A Grave. Retrieved 23 September 2012. 
  10. ^ "Ex-Idaho governor dead". Spokane Daily Chronicle. September 21, 1970. p. 6. 

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