Benjamin Baker Moeur (1869 - 1937)

Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona



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Place of Burial: Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona
Birthplace: Decherd, Franklin, Tennessee, USA
Death: Died in Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona, USA
Managed by: Denise Unander
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Immediate Family

About Benjamin Baker Moeur

Benjamin Baker Moeur (December 22, 1869 – March 16, 1937) was the fourth Governor of Arizona, one of the United States of America.

Born in Decherd, Tennessee, Moeur was a doctor before running for public office. He is credited with having delivered most of the babies born in Tempe for 36 years.

His pre-gubernatorial positions included service as the Secretary of the Board of Education for Arizona State Teacher's College (the precursor to Arizona State University) in Tempe.

During Moeur's governorship, he mobilized the Arizona National Guard to stop the construction on Parker Dam, which was being built primarily to divert more water to the Los Angeles area. The mobilization was partly an embarrassment, as the troops arrived via an antiquated steamboat, which became stranded. Its troops were rescued by workers from California working at the dam. Moeur's primary motive, however, was later vindicated by the United States Supreme Court when it ruled that California and the Bureau of Reclamation were constructing Parker Dam illegally because the dam had never been properly authorized. Subsequent legislation rectified this error and construction continued apace.

Moeur left office in 1937 and died 71 days later in Tempe, where he is buried at the Double Butte Cemetery.

In 1939, as a WPA project, Tempe Normal School (later known as Arizona State University) constructed the Moeur Building on the main Tempe Campus. The building was originally the Women's Gymnasium, later being remodeled and used as the university's admissions office. The building now houses the Mars Space Flight Facility, a NASA-funded research center directed by Dr. Phil Christensen.

Dr. Moeur has been honored since 1901 by the now Arizona State University via the Moeur Award. The Moeur Award is given to the student or students with the highest academic standing in terms of GPA, and is thus also considered the equivalent to a Valedictorian Award (which is not directly offered by Arizona State).

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Benjamin Moeur's Timeline

December 22, 1869
Decherd, Franklin, Tennessee, USA
Age 10
Medina, Texas, United States
June 8, 1897
Age 27
Age 28
Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona
Age 30
Township 1, East Gila, Salt River Base, and Meridian, Maricopa, Arizona Territory
January 1, 1903
Age 33
Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona
Age 50
Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona
Age 67
Tempe, Maricopa, Arizona, USA