1938 South Carolina gubernatorial election

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South Carolina gubernatorial election, 1938

← 1934 November 8, 1938 1942 →
  Burnet R. Maybank.jpg
Nominee Burnet R. Maybank
Party Democratic
Popular vote 49,009
Percentage 99.4%

Governor before election

Olin D. Johnston

Elected Governor

Burnet R. Maybank

The 1938 South Carolina gubernatorial election was held on November 8, 1938 to select the governor of the state of South Carolina. Burnet Rhett Maybank, Mayor of Charleston, South Carolina, won the contested Democratic primary and defeated Republican Joseph Augustis Tolbert in the general election becoming the 99th governor of South Carolina.

Democratic primary[edit]

The South Carolina Democratic Party held their primary for governor on August 30 and it is noted as being the last attempt by former Governor Cole Blease at becoming governor again. Maybank, the mayor of Charleston, had the support of the Lowcountry and emerged victorious from the runoff on September 13 against Wyndham Manning because the Upstate failed to coalesce around his candidacy.

Democratic Primary
Candidate Votes %
Burnet Rhett Maybank 117,900 35.1
Wyndham Meredith Manning 74,356 22.1
Coleman Livingston Blease 60,823 18.1
Neville Bennett 47,882 14.2
Ben E. Adams 26,376 7.9
Francis M. Easterling 6,877 2.0
D.T. Blackmon 951 0.3
John Hughes Cooper 922 0.3
Democratic Primary Runoff
Candidate Votes % ±%
Burnet Rhett Maybank 163,947 52.3 +17.2
Wyndham Meredith Manning 149,368 47.7 +25.6

General election[edit]

The general election was held on November 8, 1938 and Burnet Rhett Maybank was elected the next governor of South Carolina against token Republican candidate Joseph Augustis Tolbert. Being a non-presidential election and few contested races, turnout was much lower than the Democratic primary election.

South Carolina Gubernatorial Election, 1938
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Democratic Burnet Rhett Maybank 49,009 99.4 -0.6
Republican Joseph Augustis Tolbert 283 0.6 +0.6
Majority 48,726 98.8 -1.2
Turnout 49,292
Democratic hold
  65+% won by Maybank

See also[edit]


  • Jordan, Frank E. The Primary State: A History of the Democratic Party in South Carolina, 1876–1962. pp. 41–43.
  • "Supplemental Report of the Secretary of State to the General Assembly of South Carolina." Report of the State Officers Boards and Committees to the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina. Volume I. Columbia, South Carolina: 1939, pp. 30–31.

External links[edit]

Preceded by
South Carolina gubernatorial elections Succeeded by