Charles K. Williams
|Charles K. Williams|
|20th Governor of Vermont|
October 11, 1850 – October 1852
|Preceded by||Carlos Coolidge|
|Succeeded by||Erastus Fairbanks|
|Member of the Vermont House of Representatives|
January 24, 1782|
March 9, 1853 (aged 71)|
|Profession||lawyer / politician|
Charles Kilbourne Williams (January 24, 1782 – March 9, 1853) was an American lawyer and politician. He served as Chief Justice of the Vermont Supreme Court from 1834 to 1846 and as Governor of Vermont from 1850 to 1852.
Williams was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, Middlesex County to Samuel Williams and Jane Kilbourne Williams. He moved with his family to Rutland, Vermont in 1790. He graduated from Williams College in 1800 and earned an M.A. jointly from Williams and Middlebury Colleges and an LL.D. from Middlebury.
Williams was elected to the Vermont House of Representatives and served from 1809 to 1811. He served in the Vermont Militia as a major during the War of 1812. He was promoted to the rank of brigadier general and became commander of a division. He was again elected to the Vermont House of Representatives and served from 1814 to 1815, 1820 to 1821 and in 1849.
He served as Rutland County State's Attorney from 1814 to 1815, and as a Justice of the Vermont Supreme Court from 1822 to 1824, succeeding William Brayton. He was Vermont's US Collector of Customs from 1825 to 1829. In 1827 he was State Commissioner for common schools. He served as Chief Justice of the Vermont Supreme Court from 1834 to 1846. Williams was the author of a precedent setting opinion on the unconstitutionality of legislative acts passed to nullify judicial decisions.
Williams ran unsuccessfully for Governor of Vermont in 1842 as an abolitionist candidate. He served as President of the Council of Censors in 1848. Elected as a Whig, Williams served as Governor of Vermont from 1850 to 1852. While in office, the Habeas Corpus Act was passed, showing the strong anti-slavery sentiments in Vermont. He did not seek reelection as governor.
Williams married Lucy Green Langdon, and they had nine children together.
- "Vermont Governor Charles Kilborn Williams". National Governors Association. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Williams, Charles Kilborn (1782-1853)". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Rutland County Selected County Officials". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Justices of the Supreme Court". Office of the Vermont Secretary of State. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "The History of Rutland County". Ancestry.com. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Governor of Vermont". NDDB. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "HISTORY OF RUTLAND COUNTY". Middlebury College. Archived from the original on December 24, 2013. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Langdon, Chauncey (1763-1830)". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved November 2, 2012.
- "Evergreen Cemetery, Rutland". Vermont Old Cemetery Association. Retrieved November 13, 2017.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Charles K. Williams.|
- Governor of Vermont Notable Names Database
- Charles K. Williams at Find a Grave
- The Political Graveyard
- National Governors Association
- The Official State Website of Vermont
- Ancestry.com: The History of Rutland County
| Governor of Vermont