John E. Erickson (Montana politician)

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John Edward Erickson
John Erickson.jpg
United States Senator
from Montana
In office
March 13, 1933 – November 6, 1934
Preceded by Thomas J. Walsh
Succeeded by James E. Murray
8th Governor of Montana
In office
January 4, 1925 – March 13, 1933
Lieutenant W.S. McCormack
Frank A. Hazelbacker
Frank Henry Cooney
Preceded by Joseph M. Dixon
Succeeded by Frank Henry Cooney
Personal details
Born (1863-03-14)March 14, 1863
Stoughton, Wisconsin
Died May 25, 1946(1946-05-25) (aged 83)
Helena, Montana
Political party Democratic
Alma mater Washburn University
Religion Lutheran

John Edward Erickson (March 14, 1863 – May 25, 1946) was an American politician of the Democratic Party from Montana. He served as the eighth Governor of Montana and as a United States Senator.[1]


Erickson was born the son of E. Erickson and Olene Alma Erickson in Stoughton, Wisconsin. He moved with his parents to Eureka, Kansas. He graduated from Washburn University in Topeka, Kansas in 1890.[2] He studied law, was admitted to the bar in 1891 at Eureka, Kansas.[3] He married Grace Vance in 1898 and they had three children.


Erickson began practicing law in Kansas in 1892. He moved to Choteau, Montana in 1893 and continued practicing in that town. He served as county attorney of Teton County from 1897 to 1905, then judge of the eleventh judicial district of Montana from 1905 to 1915. He resumed the practice of law at Kalispell, Montana in 1916.[4]A Democrat, Erickson was elected in, 1924,as the eighth Governor of Montana.He won reelection in 1928, and again in 1932, making him the only governor elected to three terms.[5] He served from January 4, 1925 to 1933. During his tenure, a new state income tax was sanctioned, a fund to financially equalize impoverished rural schools was established, a gasoline tax was implemented, a new banking law was authorized, and a tax on mining profits was initiated.[6]

On March 13, 1933, Erickson appointed himself to the United States Senate to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Thomas J. Walsh. In the special election to fill the remainder of the vacancy, Erickson ran for re-election, but finished third in the primary, behind James E. Murray, who went on to win the general election, and James F. O'Connor. He continued to serve in the Senate until November 6, 1934, at which point he was replaced by Murray. Following his return from the Senate, he practiced law in Helena, Montana, until his death.


Erickson died on May 25, 1946, and is interred at Conrad Memorial Cemetery, Kalispell, Flathead County, Montana USA.


  1. ^ "Montana Governor John Edward Erickson". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 10, 2012. 
  2. ^ "Montana Governor John Edward Erickson". National Governors Association. Retrieved October 10, 2012. 
  3. ^ "John E. Erickson". Biographical Directory of the United States Congress. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 
  4. ^ Lawrence Kestenbaum (July 22, 2013). "Erickson, John Edward (1863-1946)". Retrieved October 8, 2013. 
  5. ^ "John E. Erickson". Former Governors of Montana. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 
  6. ^ "John E. Erickson". National Governors Association. Retrieved 9 October 2012. 

External links[edit]

 This article incorporates public domain material from websites or documents of the Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.

Political offices
Preceded by
Joseph M. Dixon
Governor of Montana
January 4, 1925 – March 13, 1933
Succeeded by
Frank Henry Cooney
United States Senate
Preceded by
Thomas J. Walsh
United States Senator from Montana
March 13, 1933 – November 6, 1934
Succeeded by
James Edward Murray