In the 1920s, there was a story in the media about a black Labrador named Pep, who was accused of killing a cat. According to the story, the eaten cat belonged to the wife of Pennsylvania Governor Gifford Pinchot.
The dog was allegedly sentenced to life in prison for his reckless act. Along with the story, his photograph with an identification number that read: C2559 was in circulation. Through his connections, the governor sent the dog to serve a life sentence in the Eastern State Penitentiary.
A dog who loved to chew pillows
The real truth is that Dog Pep is completely innocent, at least when it comes to the crime attributed to him, and that is eating a cat from high society. He instead chewed on the decorative pillows on the front porch of the lavish governor's house. Basically, Pep belonged to high society because the governor received it as a gift from relatives. The headstrong dog showed too much inclination to destroy the governor's wife's fabrics, which was extremely annoying, so the governor was in doubt about what to do and how to put an end to his trouble. He had two choices to opt for a wife or a dog, and then in the end the dog really ended up in jail.
During the governor’s visit to Maine, he learned that dogs are used successfully in the rehabilitation of prisoners and thought Pep would be the perfect candidate for the role. It was an ideal and life-saving solution for Pinchote, who was clearly not the ideal dog owner. He quickly packed the "suitcases" for the dog. The dog was sent to the aforementioned Eastern State Penitentiary in Philadelphia.
In prison, they say, he quickly became a favorite. When a new and more comfortable prison was built in Gutterford in 1929, about 80 kilometers away, Pep moved to his new home, where he met his end.
What is true and what is not?
Basically, Pep was punished for a much lesser crime than devouring a cat, and that was a life sentence. Furthermore, it is also true that the governor used his position to place the dog in the penitentiary. Namely, as politicians already have acquaintances in various places, the governor had a friend, Herbert Smith, who, quite by chance, was the manager of the Eastern State Penitentiary. The dog reportedly lived happily there until the 1930s, when he left this world and was subsequently buried somewhere on prison land.
The federal prison in the state of Pennsylvania is primarily known for the legendary gangster Al Capone who served his sentence in it. And in another place - the fact that it became a shelter for the dog Pep.
That prison was closed in 1971. And now it is a tourist place. People mostly come to see the camera where Al Capone was sitting. For them, they also hung a memorial plaque on the wall of the "famous prisoner Pepe", who, by the way, was buried in prison.