Rogers, John Rankin, 1838-1901

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Governor of Washington, 1897-1901.

From the description of Addresses of John R. Rogers : typescripts, 1889-1901. (Washington State University). WorldCat record id: 29852390

As a teenager, John Rankin Rogers went to Boston and apprenticed at a drug store. By 1856, he moved to Jackson, Mississippi, where he managed a drug store until 1860. Rogers moved to Illinois where he farmed and worked as a school teacher and a druggist. In 1876, he moved to Kansas where he again farmed. In 1878, Rogers became an organizer of the Farmers' Alliance. He also served as editor of the Kansas Commoner for several years in Wichita. Rogers was an active member of the farmer-based wing of the populist movement throughout the time of it existence.

In 1890, John R. Rogers moved to the state of Washington, where he settled in Puyallup and operated a drug store. Rogers also served as a leader of the Populist party in Washington. In 1895, he was elected to the state legislature as a Populist. While a lawmaker, Rogers drafted and secured passage of the "barefoot schoolboy bill." The new law made cities bear part of the expense of funding country schools, with the idea of giving equal educational opportunities to all children in the state.

John R. Rogers was elected Washington's one and only Populist governor in 1896. His victory was the product of a fusion of support among Populists, silver Republicans, and Bryan Democrats that pushed Rogers to a victory over his closest opponent, Republican P. B. Sullivan, by over 12,000 votes. As governor, Rogers continued to support state education reform. In addition, he promoted government efficiency and prison system reform.

Throughout the 1890s, Rogers authored many volumes with populist themes. These include: The Irrepressible Conflict; or An American System of Money, 1892; The Rights of Man and The Wrongs of Man, 1893; Politics: An Argument in Favor of the Inalienable Rights of Man, 1894; Homes for the Homeless, 1895; Free Land: The Remedy for Involuntary Poverty . . ., 1897; Looking Forward, or The Story of an American Farm, 1898; Life, 1899; and The Inalienable Rights of Man, 1900.

In September 1900, the Fusionists renominated Rogers as governor and he was reelected as a Democrat in November by a plurality of 2,000 votes, in the face of a plurality for the national and state Republican ticket of 13,000. Rogers served less than a year of his second term before a he died on December 26, 1901 after a short bout with lobar pneumonia.

John R. Rogers married Sara L. Greene in Illinois on March 17, 1861. They had five children: Frederick J. Rogers, professor of physics at Stanford University; Albert R. Rogers, newspaper editor, Santa Barbara, California; Edwin R. Rogers, businessman, Tacoma; Mrs. William Blackman, Spokane; and Helen Rogers, Tacoma. Sara Greene Rogers was born on May 4, 1840 in Gallipolis, Ohio. She died in Washington in 1909.

From the guide to the John Rankin Rogers Papers, 1814-1926, (Washington State University Libraries Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf John Rankin Rogers Papers, 1814-1926 Washington State University Libraries: Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
referencedIn Yoder, Fred R. (Fred Roy), b. 1888. Papers, 1890-1980. Washington State University, Holland and Terrell Libraries
referencedIn Metcalfe, John L., b. 1862. Papers, 1943-1952. Washington State University, Holland and Terrell Libraries
creatorOf Rogers, John Rankin, 1838-1901. Addresses of John R. Rogers : typescripts, 1889-1901. Washington State University, Holland and Terrell Libraries
referencedIn Baldwin, Charles M. Letter, 1941 November 27 : Pomeroy, Wash., to Dr. Claudius O. Johnson, Pullman, Wash. Washington State University, Holland and Terrell Libraries
creatorOf Washington State Library. Washington State Library's collection of a portrait photograph of Henry McBride, circa 1901-circa 1905. Washington State Library, Office of Secretary of State
referencedIn The new Legislature : has more than twice as many farmers as lawyers : thirteen veteran soldiers : only four members born west of the Rocky Mountains, 1895 January 13. Washington State Library, Office of Secretary of State
referencedIn Fred Roy Yoder Papers, ca. 1890 - ca. 1980 Washington State University Libraries: Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections
creatorOf Rogers, John Rankin, 1838-1901. Papers, 1814-1926. Washington State University, Holland and Terrell Libraries
creatorOf Washington State Library. Washington State Library's collection of a portrait photograph of John R. Rogers, circa 1890-1901. Washington State Library, Office of Secretary of State
creatorOf United States. Office of the Quartermaster General. Death list of First Washington Regiment from date of muster-in to April 1st, 1899, 1899. Washington State Library, Office of Secretary of State
referencedIn Capron, Horace, 1804-1885. Horace Capron papers, 1837-1884 (inclusive). Yale University Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Direct Relationships
Relation Name
associatedWith Baldwin, Charles M. person
associatedWith Capron, Horace, 1804-1885. person
associatedWith Metcalfe, John L., b. 1862. person
associatedWith Rogers family family
associatedWith Rogers family family
associatedWith Washington (State). Governor (1896-1901 : Rogers) corporateBody
associatedWith Washington (State). Governor (1897-1901 : Rogers) corporateBody
associatedWith Washington State Library. corporateBody
associatedWith Yoder, Fred R. (Fred Roy), b. 1888. person
Place Name Admin Code Country
United States
Washington (State)
Washington (State)
Washington (State)
Subject
Photographs
Scrapbooks
Washington (State)
Populism--United States--History
Governors--Speeches, addresses, etc
Government and Politics
Baccalaureate addresses--Specimens
Populism--History
Governors--Washington (State)--Speeches, addresses, etc
Occupation
Function

Person

Birth 1838-09-04

Death 1901-12-26

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