Acting Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 1785

Thomas Cushing was John Hancock's Lieutenant Governor. Like Hancock, he was a merchant and served as Speaker of the House of Representatives for most of the years between 1766 and 1774.

Cushing was elected Lieutenant Governor in 1780, continuing in this role until his death in 1788. He served as acting governor for the five months between John Hancock's resignation in January and the victory of James Bowdoin in May.

Hancock had hoped that his resignation would be refused and that he would be allowed to continue to hold the title of Governor while his protégé Cushing ran the Commonwealth's day-to-day affairs. The legislature accepted Hancock's resignation, forcing Cushing to unsuccessfully compete against James Bowdoin for the Governorship. Cushing continued on as Lieutenant Governor during Governor Bowdoin's terms and briefly in the Hancock administration, which followed.