George W. Baxter

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For other uses, see George Baxter (disambiguation).
George W. Baxter

George White Baxter (January 7, 1855 – December 18, 1929) was an American politician who served as territorial governor of Wyoming from November 11, 1886 – December 20, 1886.

Early years[edit]

Baxter was born in Hendersonville, North Carolina on January 7, 1855, the son of Judge John Baxter and Orra Alexander Baxter.[1] When he was two years old, Baxter's family moved to Knoxville, Tennessee, where he lived much of his life.[2]

Baxter attended university in Knoxville but later continued his education at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He left Knoxville and enrolled at West Point in 1873 and graduated in 1877. After graduating he was commissioned a second lieutenant and he served in the Third United States Cavalry for three years.[2] Baxter arrived in Wyoming in 1881 after leaving the Army.

Political career[edit]

On November 11, 1886 Baxter was appointed the governor of the then-U.S. territory of Wyoming by President Grover Cleveland.[2] He replaced Francis E. Warren, who faced scrutiny for his business dealings. Baxter's time as governor was short-lived, however; he served in the position until only December 20, 1886. He resigned the office and was replaced, temporarily by the Secretary of the Territory, Elliot S.N. Morgan.[3]

Baxter returned to politics in 1889, serving as a delegate to the Wyoming Constitutional Convention. Later, in 1890, he made an unsuccessful run for governor of Wyoming. He returned to Knoxville in 1892 and entered private business.[2]

Baxter was married to Margaret White McGhee, daughter of Knoxville businessman Charles McClung McGhee.[4]


Baxter died in New York City in 1929.


  1. ^ Charles A. Newell, Jr., "John Baxter," NCPedia, 1979. Retrieved: 1 May 2013.
  2. ^ a b c d "Wyoming State Archives - Reference, Research and Historical Photographs - Governors". Retrieved May 10, 2011. 
  3. ^ "Wyoming State Archives - Reference, Research and Historical Photographs - Governors". Retrieved May 10, 2011. 
  4. ^ Zella Armstrong, Notable Southern Families, Vol. 1 (Lookout Publishing Company, 1918), p. 149.

Gov. George White Baxter was the son of George Washington Baxter and Catherine R. (Kitty) Alexander. Gov. Baxter was born January 7, 1855; his father died October 1, 1854. Catherine was pregnant with George when her husband died. Catherine's husband, George Washington Baxter, was the brother of Judge John Baxter, who later became Catherine's 2nd husband. Catherine was his third wife. They married in 1860. Orra Alexnder was Catherine's sister and Judge Baxter's 2nd wife.

Further reading[edit]