Acting Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: 1835-1836
Orphaned at the age of thirteen, Samuel Armstrong attended public school and worked as a printer's apprentice in Dorchester, Massachusetts. He operated his own printing business and became a Deacon of the Old South Church, where he fortuitously discovered the original manuscript of the third volume of Governor John Winthrop's History of New England.
Mr. Armstrong entered politics as a Representative in Massachusetts General Court, serving in that body from 1822-1823 and in 1828-1829. He was elected Lieutenant Governor serving from 1833, until Governor John Davis' resignation to leave for the U.S. Senate in 1835.
Because Whig party leader, Daniel Webster supported Edward Everett for the governorship, when Armstrong ran for reelection he lost badly to both Everett and perennial gubernatorial candidate Marcus Morton. Armstrong continued in his successful printing business, being elected Mayor of Boston in 1836 and to the Massachusetts Senate in 1839.