Samuel W. Pennypacker
|Samuel Whitaker Pennypacker|
|Samuel Pennypacker, photographed in his office by William H. Rau|
|23rd Governor of Pennsylvania|
January 20, 1903 – January 15, 1907
|Preceded by||William Stone|
|Succeeded by||Edwin Stuart|
April 9, 1843|
|Died||September 2, 1916
Gov. Pennypacker was born in Phoenixville, Pennsylvania, April 9, 1843; son of Dr. Isaac A. Pennypacker and Anna Maria Whitaker; grandson of Matthias and Sarah Anderson (daughter of Isaac Anderson), and of Joseph and Grace Whitaker. He and his grandfather Whitaker witnessed Abraham Lincoln's speech outside Independence Hall in February 1861, standing 20 feet (6.1 m) away. Pennypacker's early education was interrupted several times.
In 1863 he answered a call to arms by Governor Andrew Curtin during the Gettysburg Campaign of the American Civil War. He enlisted as a private in Company F of the 26th Pennsylvania Volunteer Militia and trained at Camp Curtin. He fought in the skirmish at Witmer Farm, north of Gettysburg on June 26, 1863, an action that saw his newly recruited regiment retreat to Harrisburg when confronted by veteran Virginia cavalry. He left the emergency militia in late July 1863 and resumed his education.
Pennypacker studied law at the University of Pennsylvania and opened his own law practice in 1866. His public life began in the 1880s with several judgeships; Pennypacker also wrote extensively as president of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania. Amongst his publications was a history of the Phoenixville area, Annals of Phoenixville and Its Vicinity: From the Settlement to the Year 1871.
In 1902, he soundly defeated Robert Pattison, who was seeking a third nonconsecutive term as governor. During his term in office, Pennypacker signed into law the Child Labor Act of 1905, setting a minimum age and standard for young workers. He created the Pennsylvania State Police and the State Museum, and oversaw the completion of the new state capitol building.
"It is plain that the safest and most effective method of preventing procreation would be to cut the heads off the inmates, and such authority is given by the bill to this staff of scientific experts...Scientists like all men whose experiences have been limited to one pursuit...sometimes need to be restrained. Men of high scientific attainments are prone...to lose sight of broad principles outside of their domain...To permit such an operation would be to inflict cruelty upon a helpless class...which the state has undertaken to protect..." 
During his time in office, Pennypacker made his home in Schwenksville at Pennypacker Mills, a 170-acre (0.69 km2) farm and mansion that eight generations of Pennypackers lived in before it was eventually donated to Montgomery County and is now a historic park. He also used Moore Hall as a summer home.
He died at Pennypacker Mills, aged 73, and was buried in Morris Cemetery, Phoenixville. Pennypacker Hall at the Penn State University Park campus is named for him, as is the Samuel W. Pennypacker School at Philadelphia.
- The Autobiography of a Pennsylvanian (1918)
- "Colonial and Revolutionary Families of Pennsylvania", John W. Jordan. Genealogical Publishing Com, 1978. ISBN 0-8063-0811-7, 9780806308111. p. 486
- "Rare Lincoln letter donated to the Historical Society of Pennsylvania". Retrieved December 30, 2009.
- History News Network at hnn.us
- Cited in Black, Edwin (2004). War against the weak: Eugenics and America's Campaign to Create a Master Race. Thunder's Mouth Press.
- "National Historic Landmarks & National Register of Historic Places in Pennsylvania" (Searchable database). ARCH: Pennsylvania's Historic Architecture & Archaeology. Retrieved 2012-11-02. Note: This includes Eleanor Winsor and Harvey Freedenberg (August 1972). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form: Moore Hall" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-11-03.
- Collection of Samuel Pennypacker biographies
- Pennsylvania State Archives biography of Samuel Pennypacker
- Brief biography
- Pennypacker Mills
- Samuel W. Pennypacker at Find a Grave
|Governor of Pennsylvania
|Party political offices|
|Republican nominee for Governor of Pennsylvania