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George Theodore Mickelson

George Theodore Mickelson

United States federal judge and Governor of South Dakota
George Theodore Mickelson
The basics

Quick Facts

Intro United States federal judge and Governor of South Dakota
A.K.A. George Theodore Mickelson, George T Mickelson, George Mickelson
Was Lawyer Judge Politician
From United States of America
Type Law Politics
Gender male
Birth 23 July 1903, Selby
Death 28 February 1965, Sioux Falls (aged 61 years)
Children: George S. Mickelson
Peoplepill ID george-t-mickelson
The details


George Theodore Mickelson (July 23, 1903 – February 28, 1965) was the 18th Governor of South Dakota, and later a United States federal judge.

Early life and education

George T. Mickelson was born near Selby in Walworth County, South Dakota. His father was a Norwegian immigrant. Mickelson was the first Governor of South Dakota born in the twentieth century. Mickelson attended Dakota Wesleyan University and then received an LL.B. from the University of South Dakota School of Law in 1927. That year he returned to Selby to practice law. He married Madge Turner and they had four children.


Prior to serving as governor, Mickelson, a Republican, served as states attorney for Walworth County, South Dakota from 1933 to 1936. He served in the South Dakota House of Representatives from 1937–1943 and was Speaker of the House in his last term. He then served as South Dakota Attorney General from 1943 to 1947. He became Governor of South Dakota in 1947, and served until 1951.

Mickelson ran as favorite-son candidate in 1952 South Dakota presidential primary, supporting a national bid of Dwight D. Eisenhower, and lost narrowly to Eisenhower chief rival, Senator Robert A. Taft of Ohio.

On December 9, 1953, Mickelson received a recess appointment from President Eisenhower to a seat on the United States District Court for the District of South Dakota vacated by Alfred Lee Wyman. Formally nominated on January 11, 1954, Mickelson was confirmed by the United States Senate on February 9, 1954, and received his commission the following day. He served as chief judge of the court from 1954 until his death in 1965.

Mickelson is the patriarch of the prominent Mickelson family of South Dakota. Mickelson's son, George S. Mickelson, served as Governor of South Dakota from 1987 to 1993. They are the only father and son duo to serve in that office in the history of South Dakota. His grandson Mark Mickelson is the current Speaker of the House of Representatives in the South Dakota State Legislature.


Mickelson died February 28, 1965, and is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery, Sioux Falls, Minnehaha County, South Dakota USA.

The contents of this page are sourced from Wikipedia article. The contents are available under the CC BY-SA 4.0 license.
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