C. A. Bottolfsen
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C. A. Bottolfsen

C. A. Bottolfsen
C. A. Bottolfsen (Idaho Governor).jpg
Frontispiece of 1940's Les Bois, the yearbook of Boise Junior College
17th and 19th Governor of Idaho

January 2, 1939 - January 5, 1941
LieutenantDonald Whitehead
Barzilla Clark
Chase A. Clark

January 4, 1943 - January 1, 1945
LieutenantEdwin Nelson
Chase A. Clark
Charles Gossett
Speaker of the Idaho House of Representatives

Donald S. Whitehead
Robert Coulter
Member of the Idaho House of Representatives

Personal details
Clarence Alfred Bottolfsen

(1891-10-10)October 10, 1891
Superior, Wisconsin
DiedJuly 18, 1964(1964-07-18) (aged 72)
Boise, Idaho
Resting placeHillcrest Cemetery, Arco, Idaho
Political partyRepublican
Spouse(s)Elizabeth Hanna Bottolfsen (m. 1912–1964, his death )
Military service
AllegianceUnited States
Branch/serviceU.S. Army
Years of service1918–1919

Clarence Alfred Bottolfsen (October 10, 1891 – July 18, 1964) was a politician from Idaho, a member of the Idaho Republican Party. He served as the 17th and 19th Governor of Idaho, from 1939 to 1941 and again from 1943 to 1945.[1]

Early years

Born in Superior, Wisconsin, Bottolfsen moved with his family to Fessenden, North Dakota, in 1902 where he was educated in the public schools. While in high school, he worked as a printer's devil (an apprentice or errand boy) in a local printing shop.[2] In 1910,[3] the owner of the shop moved to Arco, Idaho, purchased the Arco Advertiser, and sent for Bottolfsen, then nineteen, to manage it. He purchased the paper and continued to be the publisher in Arco until 1949. He married Elizabeth Hanna on August 27, 1912.[4]


Bottolfsen entered the U.S. Army on June 27, 1918 and served until four months after the Armistice and was discharged in March 1919. After the War, he took a leading part in the organization of the American Legion and served as State Commander in 1934.[5]

Bottolfsen served in the Idaho House of Representatives beginning in 1921; he was reelected in 1922, 1926, 1928, and 1930. From 1925 to 1927 he was the House's chief clerk, and he was speaker in 1931. He was chairman of the Idaho Republican Party from 1936 to 1938. He is one of only two people in Idaho history to serve non-consecutive terms as governor (Cecil Andrus is the other).

Early in his first term in 1939, he signed the bill creating the Idaho State Police.[6][7]

Idaho Gubernatorial Elections: Results 1938–1942
Year Democrat Votes Pct Republican Votes Pct
1938 C. Ben Ross 77,697 41.89% C. A. Bottolfsen 106,268 57.30%
1940 Chase Clark 120,420 50.48% C. A. Bottolfsen (inc.) 118,117 49.52%
1942 Chase Clark (inc.) 71,826 49.85% C. A. Bottolfsen 72,260 50.15%

Bottolfsen ran for United States Senate in 1944 but was defeated by Glen H. Taylor. In his later years he served as chief clerk of the Idaho House of Representatives and on the staff of United States Senator Herman Welker. Bottolfsen was elected to the Idaho State Senate in 1958 and 1960, but declined to seek reelection in 1962 due to poor health.

Death and legacy

Bottolfsen was an active Freemason within the Grand Lodge of Idaho, serving as master of Arco Lodge No. 48. He was also active with the El Korah Shrine in Boise, the Rotary Club and the Arco Chamber of Commerce.

Bottolfsen died at age 72 in Boise from complications from emphysema, which he suffered from in his final years. Bottolfsen Park in Arco is named after him.[8] The papers of C.A. Bottolfsen are contained within the University of Idaho Library in Moscow,[9] and he and his wife are interred at Hillcrest Cemetery in Arco.


  1. ^ C. A. Bottolfsen (The Political Graveyard)
  2. ^ "C. A. Bottolfsen". University of Idaho Library. Retrieved 2012.
  3. ^ "Governor C.A. Bottolfsen". Gem of the Mountains, University of Idaho yearbook. 1940. p. 24.
  4. ^ "C. A. Bottolfsen". The Political Graveyard. Retrieved 2012.
  5. ^ "C. A.Bottolfsen". Idaho Genealogy Trails. Retrieved 2012.
  6. ^ "Governor signs measure creating police force". Lewiston Morning Tribune. Associated Press. February 21, 1939. p. 1.
  7. ^ "Idaho State Police makes wishes on 50th birthday". Idahonian. Moscow. Associated Press. February 21, 1989. p. 5A.
  8. ^ C. A. Bottolfsen Biographical Sketch (University of Idaho)
  9. ^ Clarence A. Bottolfsen, Papers (University of Idaho)

External links

Political offices
Preceded by
Barzilla W. Clark
Governor of Idaho
January 1, 1939 - January 6, 1941
Succeeded by
Chase A. Clark
Preceded by
Chase A. Clark
Governor of Idaho
January 4, 1943 - January 1, 1945
Succeeded by
Charles C. Gossett
Party political offices
Preceded by
Donald A. Callahan
Republican Party nominee, U.S. Senator (Class 3) from Idaho
1944 (lost)
Succeeded by
Herman Welker

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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