Charles C. Gossett

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Charles C. Gossett
United States Senator
from Idaho
In office
November 17, 1945 (1945-11-17) – November 6, 1946 (1946-11-06)
Appointed byArnold Williams
Preceded byJohn W. Thomas
Succeeded byHenry Dworshak
20th Governor of Idaho
In office
January 1, 1945 (1945-01-01) – November 17, 1945 (1945-11-17)
LieutenantArnold Williams
Preceded byC. A. Bottolfsen
Succeeded byArnold Williams
22nd Lieutenant Governor of Idaho
In office
January 4, 1937 – January 2, 1939
GovernorBarzilla Clark
Preceded byG. P. Mix
Succeeded byDonald Whitehead
24th Lieutenant Governor of Idaho
In office
January 6, 1941 – January 4, 1943
GovernorChase Clark
Preceded byDonald Whitehead
Succeeded byEdwin Nelson
Member of the Idaho House of Representatives
In office
Personal details
Charles Clinton Gossett

(1888-09-02)September 2, 1888
Pricetown, Ohio
DiedSeptember 20, 1974(1974-09-20) (aged 86)
Boise, Idaho
Resting placeKohlerlawn Cemetery, Nampa, Idaho
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)Clara Louise Fleming (1892–1967)
ResidenceNampa, Idaho

Charles Clinton Gossett (September 2, 1888 – September 20, 1974) was an American politician from Idaho. He served as the 20th Governor of Idaho and a United States Senator, but was in both offices less than a year.[1]


Born in Pricetown, Ohio, Gossett attended public schools in Ohio. He moved west to Cunningham, Washington, in 1907, to Ontario, Oregon, in 1910, and finally to Nampa, Idaho, in 1922. He engaged in the agriculture, livestock, feed and shipping businesses.


In 1932, Gossett was elected to the Idaho Legislature in the house. In 1936, he was elected the 22nd and 24th Lieutenant Governor of Idaho, serving alongside Governor Barzilla Clark. Four years later Gossett returned as lieutenant governor under Governor Chase Clark, Barzilla Clark's younger brother.

Gossett was elected governor in his own right in 1944, the last election for a two-year term, but served less than a year. He resigned in November 1945 to let his successor, Lieutenant Governor Arnold Williams, appoint him to the United States Senate to succeed the late John W. Thomas.[2][3][4]

In the special election for the seat in 1946, Gossett was defeated in the Democratic primary in June by state senator George Donart,[5] who in turn was defeated by Republican Congressman Henry Dworshak in the general election in November. After the loss, Gossett returned to his former business pursuits.

Gossett attempted a political comeback in 1954 in a run for governor. At the time, self-succession (re-election) was not allowed, and Len Jordan's term was ending. Gossett was defeated in the Democratic gubernatorial primary in August by state senator Clark Hamilton,[6] who in turn lost to Republican Attorney General Robert Smylie in the general election. Gossett was appointed to the Idaho Tax Commission by Smylie in 1956 and served until 1967.[7][8]

Family life[edit]

Gossett married Clara Louise Fleming on November 28, 1916,[1] and they had three children.[7]


Following an extended illness, Gossett died at age 86 in Boise on September 20, 1974,[9] and is interred at Kohlerlawn Cemetery in Nampa.


  1. ^ a b "Charles C. Gossett". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved June 22, 2013.
  2. ^ "Gossett resigns to accept U.S. Senate seat; Arnold Williams is Idaho governor". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Idaho. November 18, 1945. p. 1.
  3. ^ "Gov. Gossett resigns to take Senate post". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Idaho. Associated Press. November 17, 1945. p. 1.
  4. ^ "Charles C. Gossett". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 23 September 2012.
  5. ^ Pitman, Frank W. (June 12, 1946). "Donart defeats Gossett for Senate nomination". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Idaho. Associated Press. p. 1.
  6. ^ "Returns confirm poll victories by Taylor, Smylie, Hamilton". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Idaho. Associated Press. August 12, 1954. p. 1.
  7. ^ a b "Charles C. Gossett". National Governors Association. Retrieved 23 September 2012.
  8. ^ "Kellogg businessman named to state tax commission". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Idaho. Associated Press. September 16, 1967. p. 1.
  9. ^ "Ex-governor of Idaho dead at 86". Spokesman-Review. Spokane, Washington. Associated Press. September 21, 1974. p. 16.

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
G. P. Mix
Lieutenant Governor of Idaho
January 3, 1937 – January 2, 1939
Succeeded by
Donald S. Whitehead
Preceded by
Donald S. Whitehead
Lieutenant Governor of Idaho
January 3, 1941 – January 2, 1943
Succeeded by
Edwin Nelson
Preceded by
C. A. Bottolfsen
Governor of Idaho
January 1, 1945 – November 17, 1945
Succeeded by
Arnold Williams
Party political offices
Preceded by
Chase A. Clark
Democratic Party nominee, Governor of Idaho
1944 (won)
Succeeded by
Arnold Williams
U.S. Senate
Preceded by
John W. Thomas
U.S. Senator (Class 2) from Idaho
November 17, 1945 – November 6, 1946
Served alongside: Glen H. Taylor
Succeeded by
Henry Dworshak