Maine: An Encyclopedia
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Hubbard, John

John Hubbard (courtesy Maine State Museum)

John Hubbard (courtesy Maine State Museum)

(1794-1869) of Hallowell, was born in Readfield March 22, 1794. His father, a physician and farmer, though once prosperous, fell on hard times and lost much of his property.

Hubbard had little high school education, but decided to improve himself by studying in his spare time. When he was nineteen, his father gave him $15 and a horse, which he used to ride to Dartmouth College determined to enter. Within a year he had passed an entrance exam that allowed him to enter the sophomore class in 1814.

Upon graduation with high honors in 1816, he became Principal of the Academy at Hallowell. Later he decided on a medical career, received his credentials and practical experience, and established a practice in Hallowell.

Elected to the State Senate in 1843, he was a successful Democratic candidate for Governor in 1849 and in 1850. In that office from 1850-1853, he was known as the “Father of Prohibition,” having signed Maine’s first prohibition law, banning the sale and manufacture of liquor, in 1851.

While governor, he toured the Moosehead Lake region in the summer of 1852 via the West Branch toward Mount Katahdin.

Though Hubbard received a plurality of votes in the next election, the Legislature, whose job it was to select a governor if no candidate received a majority of the popular vote, selected William G. Crosby, the Whig candidate. Hubbard’s support for the prohibition law apparently cost him votes among his fellow Democrats.

As governor, he advocated the establishment of a reform school, an agricultural college, and a “female college.” He achieved the purchase of lands owned in common with Massachusetts or owned separately by that state, so that the State of Maine held all these public lands.

After remaining an active citizen, including in a diplomatic capacity, he died in Hallowell on February 6, 1869.

Additional resources

Chase, Henry, ed. Representative Men of Maine.

*“Death of Ex-Gov. Hubbard,” Daily Kennebec Journal, Augusta, February 6, 1869.

*“Hon. John Hubbard, Governor of Maine,” Boston Museum, March 20, 1852, pp. 321, 326.

*Hubbard, Col. Thomas H. “Governor John Hubbard,” Maine Historical and Genealogical Recorder. Bangor, 1888, pp. 185-192.

*Mayo, Bernard. “John Hubbard,” Dictionary of American Biography. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1933, Vol. 9, pp. 328-329.

————————

*Cited in  Friends of the Blaine House at http://blainehouse.org/governors (accessed April 26, 2011)

This entry was posted in Government, Governors and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *