Because Hiram Bingham resigned after one day in office, John Trumbull served the shortest term of any lieutenant governor in the state. Despite his famous Connecticut name, he was not related to any of the three previous Trumbulls who had served as governors.
His parents were Irish immigrants who moved to Ashford in the early 1870's to operate a farm. Trumbull was born there in 1873, but the family later moved to Plainville where he developed an interest in the emerging industry of electricity. In 1898 he and a brother formed an electrical business in Plainville in partnership with another man. Known as the Trumbull Electric Company, it produced appliances and later became part of General Electric. Trumbull was its president from 1911 until he retired from the company in 1944. He was also active in other business firms.
Trumbull had an interest in the militia and joined the First Connecticut Infantry in 1891. He achieved the rank of colonel in the State Guard. He also developed an interest in flying and piloted his own airplanes during speaking engagements. This earned him the title of. Flying Governor. Trumbull married Maud Usher in 1903 and they had two children.
With Bingham leaving office on January 8, 1925, Trumbull served that complete term as governor and was reelected two more times. He chose to retire in 1931. As a conservative Republican, he balanced the state's budget and sought to assist Connecticut's businesses.
During his terms the state government began a building program and worked to improve Connecticut's roads. When the Great Depression came in 1929 Trumbull was unable to prevent the state's unemployment from growing nor to solve its financial problems. Trumbull did seek to become governor again in 1932, but lost to the incumbent, Wilbur Cross.
When Trumbull left office he continued overseeing his business interests. He was also an active sportsman. The Museum of Connecticut History owns a propeller from a plane he once crashed. It also owns a firearm that was presented to him by the Colt Company of Hartford. His factory building in Plainville still stands on Woodford Avenue.