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Eugene Noble Foss

Gov. Eugene Noble Foss

  • January 5, 1911 - January 8, 1914
  • Democratic
  • September 24, 1858
  • September 13, 1939
  • Vermont
  • University of Vermont
  • Married Lilla Sturdevant; four children
  • Resigned
  • Representative


EUGENE N. FOSS, the forty-seventh governor of Massachusetts, was born in West Berkshire, Vermont on September 24, 1858. His early education was attained at the Franklin County Academy, and later he attended the University of Vermont, however he never graduated. He then studied law, but dropped his studies to pursue a business career. He first worked as a traveling salesman, and eventually became president of his father-in-law’s iron and steel company. Noble first entered politics in 1904, serving as a delegate to the Republican National Convention. He also served as a Democratic member of the U.S. House of Representatives from 1910 to 1911. Foss next secured the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, and went on to win election to the governorship on November 8, 1910. He was reelected to a second term in 1911, and to a third term in 1912. During his tenure, legislative pay raises were authorized; direct election of state officers was sanctioned; campaign expenses were controlled; a state employee pension plan was instituted; and the number of state judgeships was increased, as well as their salaries. Also, a textile strike in Lawrence was dealt with; part-time schooling for working children was enforced; and a workmen’s compensation program was initiated for work related injuries. After running unsuccessfully for reelection, Foss left office on January 8, 1914, and retired from public service. Governor Eugene N. Foss passed away on September 13, 1939, and was buried at the Forest Hill Cemetery in Boston, Massachusetts.


Sobel, Robert, and John Raimo, eds. Biographical Directory of the Governors of the United States, 1789-1978, Vol. 2, Westport, Conn.; Meckler Books, 1978. 4 vols.

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