Presidential Image Gallery

President Arthur’s Domestic Reforms

November 30, 1881
Source: The Library of Congress

When Chester Arthur became President in September 1881 after President James Garfield died, he surprised everyone by acting independently. He defied his state-based reputation as a slick machine politician who would advance the agenda of his own party faction and ignore the needs of the nation at-large. In fact, he worked to enact civil service reform, signing the Pendleton Civil Service Reform Act in 1883.

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