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Paul A. Dever

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Title: Paul A. Dever  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Massachusetts gubernatorial election, 1950, United States presidential election, 1952, Political party strength in Massachusetts, Massachusetts gubernatorial election, 1952, Robert F. Bradford
Collection: 1903 Births, 1958 Deaths, American Military Personnel of World War II, Boston University School of Law Alumni, Burials in Massachusetts, Democratic Party State Governors of the United States, Governors of Massachusetts, Massachusetts Attorneys General, Massachusetts Democrats, People from Boston, Massachusetts, Politicians from Boston, Massachusetts, United States Navy Officers, United States Presidential Candidates, 1952
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Paul A. Dever

Paul A. Dever
1939 photograph by Harris and Ewing
58th Governor of Massachusetts
In office
January 6, 1949 – January 8, 1953
Lieutenant Charles F. Sullivan
Preceded by Robert F. Bradford
Succeeded by Christian A. Herter
32nd Massachusetts Attorney General
In office
Preceded by Joseph E. Warner
Succeeded by Robert T. Bushnell
Personal details
Born Paul Andrew Dever
(1903-01-15)January 15, 1903
Boston, Massachusetts
Died April 11, 1958(1958-04-11) (aged 55)
Boston, Massachusetts
Political party Democratic

Paul Andrew Dever (January 15, 1903 – April 11, 1958) was a Democratic politician from Boston, Massachusetts. He served as the 58th Governor of Massachusetts.

Early life

He attended the Boston Latin School and worked as a shoe salesman and clerk to finance his legal education at Boston University. When he graduated with high honors in 1926, he also had high expectations. As Chicago's chief executive from 1923 to 1927, Dever's cousin from Woburn, Massachusetts, William E. Dever had gained national prominence as the "Mayor who cleaned up Chicago."

Paul Dever was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives in 1928, and served from 1929 to 1935. In 1934 he was elected Attorney General, the youngest in the history of Massachusetts at age 31. In 1940, he challenged popular incumbent Governor Leverett Saltonstall, coming within a small margin of an upset victory.

World War II

In 1942 Dever enlisted in the Navy for World War II. He was subsequently commissioned a Lieutenant Commander, and served in the North Atlantic, European and African Sectors until his discharge at the end of the war in 1945.

Return to politics

Dever lost the 1946 race for lieutenant governor, but two years later he defeated incumbent governor Robert F. Bradford by a substantial margin, and became the 58th Governor. Governor Dever increased state aid to schools and issued an executive order to extend higher education benefits to Korean War veterans. Among his chief concerns were civil defense and resisting domestic communism. He advocated increasing old age and workers compensation insurance.

Dever was re-elected in 1950, defeating the Republican candidate, former Lieutenant Governor Arthur W. Coolidge.

In 1952 Dever made an unsuccessful bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. Later that year the Dever administration came under fire when the Massachusetts Federation of Taxpayers Associations found that pensions for members and former members of the state legislature had been increased. One of those eligible was

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