Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography/Gookin, Charles

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search

GOOKIN, Charles, deputy governor of Pennsylvania. He bore the title of colonel, and was deputy governor of Pennsylvania under William Penn from February, 1709, till May, 1717. He was selected because of his thoughtful demeanor and supposed wisdom, but it was afterward learned that he was deranged. Until the session of 1714, harmony prevailed between the assembly and the governor. The remainder of his term of office was stormy. On 15 Feb., 1714, the day for the convening of the assembly, the weather was severe, and a quorum failed to assemble. This embittered him, and when, on the following day, an organization was effected, he roundly abused the committee sent to him, and drove them from his door. He once removed all the chief justices of New Castle county for doing their duty in an action against his brother-in-law, leaving the county without a magistrate for six weeks. At another time, when the judges of the supreme court at New Castle refused to permit a certain commission of his to be published in court, he sent for one of the judges and kicked him. The breach made by his eccentricities widened until 1717, when, on petition of the council, he was removed. One of William Penn's letters says: “His grandfather, Sir Vincent Gookin, had been an early great planter in Ireland in Kings James I. and Charles I. days.”