John S. Fisher, Governor of Pennsylvania, c. 1930.
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Oil on canvas of John S. Fisher.

Credit: Courtesy of Capitol Preservation Committee, and John Rudy Photography,

Elected as a reform-minded Republican in 1926, Governor Fisher hoped to manage state government with "the same honesty and purpose as if it were a corporation." By 1930, however, the state had the third highest unemployment rate in the country and more people losing their jobs daily. To meet the crisis, Fisher supported new public works programs that would earn him the nickname of "The Builder." When he retired from office in January 1931, the worst was yet to come.

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