Robert P. Linn was a dedicated statesman. In 1995, he earned a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records as the longest-serving mayor in the United States.
Linn was sworn into office 58 years ago in the town of Beaver, Pa., a small suburb of Pittsburgh. He didn’t want the job originally, but a group of Republicans encouraged him to run in order to unseat the incumbent. Linn even published a letter in the local newspaper that urged voters to elect his opponent. But the public preferred to honor his humility and gave him the job. He served for 15 consecutive terms.
During the course of his tenure, Linn converted the train station into a 9-1-1 headquarters and transformed the freight station into the Beaver Area Historical Museum. He also established Streetscape, a project that removed all of the utility poles lining the town’s Main Street. The holes left behind were then filled with trees and Victorian-style street lights.
Born in Burgettstown, Pa., Linn graduated from Beaver High School and Grove City College. He taught in Beaver Falls during the Great Depression, then worked for the Duquesne Light Co. as an appliance salesman for school home economics programs.
Linn died on Aug. 21. Cause of death was not released. He was 95.
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