King County Commissioners

  • By Emily Lieb
  • Posted 9/25/2006
  • HistoryLink.org Essay 7943
King County Commissioners were in charge of King County's affairs from 1853, when the federal Organic Act gave the Territorial legislature the power to create county governments, until 1969, when the county implemented a voter-approved home-rule charter that reorganized its government. (The new charter replaced the three-member County Commission with a nine-member County Council and an elected County Executive.) The commissioners held a good deal of legislative and executive authority: They passed laws; appropriated money and established tax rates; ran county departments and appointed county officials; maintained roads, jails, and other county buildings; and licensed businesses.  

King County Commissioners

1853

  • L. M. Collins, served 1853-1855
  • Arthur A. Denny, served 1853-1854
1854
  • L. M. Collins, served 1853-1855
  • G. W. W. Loomis, served 1854-1854
  • Thomas Mercer, served 1854-1858

September 1854

  • Alfred Savage, served 1855-1857
  • C. C. Lewis, served 1855-1857
  • Thomas Mercer, served 1854-1858

1857

  • Thomas Mercer, served 1854-1858
  • Francis McNatt, served 1857-1857
  • Edward Hanford, served 1857-1857

September 1857

  • Thomas Mercer, served 1854-1858
  • John C. Card, served 1857-1862

1858

  • John M. Thomas, served 1857-1860
  • John C. Card, served 1857-1862

July 1858

  • John H. Thomas, served 1857-1860
  • John C. Card, served 1857-1862
  • John H. Nagle, served July 1858-December 1859
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1858-1862

1860

  • John C. Card, served 1857-1862
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1860-1862
  • Henry Adams, served 1860-1862

1862

  • H. P. O'Brien, H. P. served 1862-1863
  • William P. Smith, served 1862-1864
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1860-1862

May 1864

  • H. L. Yesler, served 1860-1862
  • William P. Smith, served 1862-1864
  • Lewis McMillin, served 1864-1866

November 1864

  • William P. Smith, served 1862-1864
  • Lewis McMillin, served 1864-1866
  • E. Stedman, served 1864-1865

1865

  • Lewis McMillin, served 1864-1866
  • Hirnam Burnett, Hirnam served 1865-1867
  • R. M. Stewart, served 1865-1867

1867

  • Alexander Gow, served 1867-1870
  • James W. Bush, served 1867-1870
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1867-1873

1868

  • Alexander Gow, served 1867-1870
  • James W. Bush, served 1867-1870
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1867-1873

1870

  • H. L. Yesler, served 1867-1873
  • John P. Adams, served 1870-1871
  • Joseph Gibson, served 1870-1871

1871

  • H. L. Yesler, served 1867-1873
  • Francis McNatt, served 1871-1873
  • Peter Saar, served 1871-1873

1873

  • R. Robinson, served 1873-1874
  • J. T. Stewart, served 1873-1874
  • A. C. Kimball, served 1873-1875

1874

  • J. T. Stewart, served 1873-1874
  • A. C. Kimball, served 1873-1875
  • Stephen P. Andrews, served 1874-1875

August 1874

  • E. M. Smithers, served 1874-1875
  • Stephen P. Andrews, served 1874-1875

1875

  • J. W. Borst, served 1875-1876
  • C. W. Lawton, served 1875 - 1876
  • H. L. Yesler, served 1875-1876

April 1876

  • H. L. Yesler, served 1875-1876
  • J. W. Borst, served 1875-1876
  • Francis McNatt, served 1876-1876

August 1876

  • H. L. Yesler, served 1875-1876
  • J. W. Borst, served 1875-1876
  • David R. McMillin, served 1876-1876

December 1876

  • Terence O'Brien, served 1876-1879
  • M. R. Maddocks, served 1876-1879
  • Rufus Stearns, served 1876-1881

1879

  • Rufus Stearns, served 1876-1881
  • Peter Saar, served 1879-1881
  • James Bagley, served 1879-1881

1881

  • J. Manning Colman, served 1881-1885
  • C. M. Van Doren, served 1881-1883
  • Robert Abrams, served 1881-1885

1883

  • J. Manning Colman, served 1881-1885
  • Robert Abrams, served 1881-1885
  • K. H. McCabe, served 1883-1885

1885

  • W. W. Perrigo, served 1885-1887
  • C. W. Lawton, served 1885-1887
  • C. M. Van Doren, served 1885-1887

1887

  • Julius F. Mess, served 1887-1889
  • P. S. Wilkes, served 1887-1889
  • Alex Allen, served 1887-1889

1889

  • W. H. Taylor, served 1889-1893
  • Fred Gasch, served 1889-1896
  • John Wooding, served 1889-1894

1893

  • Fred Gasch, served 1889-1896
  • John Wooding, served 1889-1894
  • A. L. Rutherford, served 1893-1895

1895

  • Fred Gasch, served 1889-1896
  • F. O. Nickerson served 1895-1899
  • W. H. Heaton served 1895-1897

1897

  • Thomas Ryan, served 1897-1899
  • F. O. Nickerson served 1895-1899
  • James J. Boyce, served 1897-1901

1899

  • James J. Boyce, served 1897-1901
  • L. C. Smith, served 1899-1905
  • George N. Gilson, served 1899-1903

1901

  • L. C. Smith, served 1899-1905
  • George N. Gilson, served 1899-1903
  • P. J. Smith, served 1901-1907

1903

  • L. C. Smith, served 1899-1905
  • P. J. Smith, served 1901-1907
  • Charles Baker, served 1903-1906

1905

  • P. J. Smith, served 1901-1907
  • Charles Baker, served 1903-1906
  • Dan R. Abraham, served 1905-1910

1906

  • P. J. Smith, served 1901-1907
  • Dan R. Abraham, served 1905-1910
  • Charles Beckingham, served 1906-1909

1907

  • Dan R. Abraham, served 1905-1910
  • Charles Beckingham, served 1906-1909
  • A. L. Rutherford, served 1907-1914

1909

  • Dan R. Abraham, served 1905-1910
  • A. L. Rutherford, served 1907-1914
  • M. J. Carrington [Carrigan?], served 1909-1911

1911

  • David McKenzie, served 1909-1915
  • A. L. Rutherford, served 1907-1914
  • M. L. Hamilton, served 1911-1917

1914

  • David McKenzie, served 1909-1915
  • M. L. Hamilton, served 1911-1917
  • Krist Knudson, served 1914-1919

1915

  • M. J. Carrington [Carrigan?], served 1915-1917
  • M. L. Hamilton, served 1911-1917
  • Krist Knudson, served 1914-1919

1917

  • Krist Knudson, served 1914-1919
  • Claude C. Ramsay, served 1917-1923
  • L. C. Smith, served 1917-1923

1919

  • Claude C. Ramsay, served 1917-1923
  • L. C. Smith, served 1917-1923
  • Tom Dobson, served 1919-1925

1923

  • Frank H. Paul, served 1923-1929
  • William A. Gaines, [William H.?] served 1923-1927
  • Tom Dobson, served 1919-1925

1925

  • Frank H. Paul, served 1923-1929
  • William A. Gaines, [William H.?] served 1923-1927
  • William Brown, served 1925-1931

1927

  • Frank H. Paul, served 1923-1929
  • William Brown, served 1925-1931
  • J. M. Sparkman, served 1927-1929

1929

  • Don H. Evans, served 1929-1933
  • William Brown, served 1925-1931
  • Wilmer B. Brinton, served 1929-1935

1931

  • Don H. Evans, served 1929-1933
  • Wilmer B. Brinton, served 1929-1935
  • J. A. Earley, served 1931-1933

1933

  • Wilmer B. Brinton, served 1929-1935
  • John C. Stevenson, served 1932-1936
  • Louis Nash, served 1933-1939

1935

  • John C. Stevenson, served 1932-1936
  • Louis Nash, served 1933-1939
  • Jack Taylor, served 1935-1941

1938

  • Louis Nash, served 1933-1939
  • Jack Taylor, served 1935-1941
  • Tom Smith, served 1938-1943

1939

  • Tom Smith, served 1938-1943
  • Jack Taylor, served 1935-1941
  • Russell H. Fluent, served 1939-1945

1941

  • Tom Smith, served 1938-1943
  • Russell H. Fluent, served 1939-1945
  • A. E. Phelps, served 1941-1947

1943

  • Russell H. Fluent, served 1939-1945
  • Joseph A. Whetstone, served 1942-1946
  • A. E. Phelps, served 1941-1947

1945

  • Joseph A. Whetstone, served 1942-1946
  • Harold Sparkman, served 1945-1947
  • A. E. Phelps, served 1941-1947

1947

  • William H. Sears, served 1946-1958
  • Taylor M. Greene, served 1947-1950
  • Joseph A. Whetstone, served 1942-1946
  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959 (elected in July)

1950

  • William H. Sears, served 1946-1958
  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959
  • James A. Gibbs, served 1950-1957

1957

  • William H. Sears, served 1946-1958
  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959
  • Howard Odell, served 1957-1962 (elected in July)

1958

  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959
  • Howard Odell, served 1957-1962
  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969 (elected in April)

July 1958

  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959
  • Howard Odell, served 1957-1962
  • William Moshier, served 1958-1958

November 1958

  • Dean C. McLean, served 1947-1959
  • Howard Odell, served 1957-1962
  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969

1959

  • Howard Odell,served 1957-1962
  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969
  • Scott Wallace, served 1959-1967

February 1962

  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969
  • Scott Wallace, served 1959-1967
  • Robert M. Ford, served 1962-1962

November 1962

  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969
  • Scott Wallace, served 1959-1967
  • John T. O'Brien, served 1962-1973

1967

  • Ed Munro, served 1958-1969
  • John T. O'Brien, served 1962-1973
  • John D. Spellman, served 1967-1969

Sources: King County Sesquicentennial, Elected Officials: Commissioner (http://your.kingcounty.gov/kc150/elected_results.asp); "July Election Returns, King County" (reports Yesler and John Nagle elected county commisisoners), Pioneer and Democrat, No. 44, September 24, 1858; HistoryLink.org, The Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History, “King County voters approve first Home Rule Charter on November 5, 1968” (by Walt Crowley) and "Freeholders propose new Home Rule charter for King County on July 28, 1952” (by Kit Oldham), http://www.historylink.org/ (accessed September 2006).
Note: This list was corrected on December 6, 2009, to note John Nagle's election along with Yesler in July 1858, and on May 5, 2011 to correct the middle initial of John M. Thomas.

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