C. A. Bottolfsen, Governor

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C. A. Bottolfsen, Governor's Geni Profile

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Clarence Alfred Bottolfsen

Birthdate: (73)
Death: 1964 (73)
Immediate Family:

Son of Andrew Bottolfsen and Mary Bottolfsen
Husband of Elizabeth M. Hanna

Managed by: Private User
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About C. A. Bottolfsen, Governor


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.

Early years

Bottolfsen was born in Superior, Wisconsin, and moved with his family to Fessender, 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. In 1910, 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


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.

Bottolfsen served in the state legislature in the house, and was elected speaker in 1931. He also chaired the Idaho Republican Party from 1937 to 1938. He is one of only two people in Idaho history to serve non-consecutive terms as governor (Cecil Andrus is the other).

Idaho Gubernatorial Elections: Results 1938–1942

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. The papers of C.A. Bottolfsen are contained within the University of Idaho Library in Moscow, Idaho. He and his wife are interred at Hillcrest Cemetery in Arco.

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C. A. Bottolfsen, Governor's Timeline

Age 73