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Smedley Butler

Smedley ButlerAKA Smedley Darlington Butler

Born: 30-Jul-1881
Birthplace: West Chester, PA
Died: 21-Jun-1940
Location of death: Philadelphia, PA
Cause of death: unspecified
Remains: Buried, Oaklands Cemetery, West Chester, PA

Gender: Male
Religion: Quaker
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Military
Party Affiliation: Republican

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Exposed the 1933 coup plot

Military service: USMC (1898-1924; 1926-31)

Was approached in the summer of 1933 by plotters from the Morgan Bank planning a coup d'etat against Franklin D. Roosevelt. Bond trader Gerald MacGuire spoke on behalf of financiers Grayson Murphy, Robert Sterling Clark, and six other men. He attempted to lure Butler into their traitorous scheme: march 500,000 veterans on the capitol and forcibly seize FDR. Butler demurred and revealed the story at public Congressional hearings in 1934. His story was corroborated by Veterans of Foreign Wars commander James E. Van Zandt, who testified that he also had been approached to lead the 500,000-man march on Washington.

Father: Thomas Stalker Butler (Congressman, Pennsylvania 1897-1928)
Mother: Maud Mary Darlington
Wife: Ethel Conway Peters (m. 30-Jun-1905)
Daughter: Ethel Peters Butler
Son: Smedley Darlington Butler, Jr.
Son: Thomas Richard Butler

    High School: Haverford School, Haverford, PA (1898)

    Philadelphia Director of Public Safety (1924-26)
    American League Against War and Fascism spokesman (1935-37)
    Veterans of Foreign Wars
    Congressional Medal of Honor (Dec-1915), for actions in Veracruz, Mexico (22-Apr-1914)
    Congressional Medal of Honor (1917), for actions in Haiti (17-Nov-1915)
    Army Distinguished Service Medal 9-Jul-1918
    Navy Distinguished Service Medal
    Shot: Battle Battle of Tientsin (13-Jul-1900), thigh wound
    Shot: Battle San Tan Pating, chest wound
    Nervous Breakdown (1908)
    HUAC Hearings (Nov-1934)

Author of books:
War is a Racket (1935, nonfiction)


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