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Silver Legion of America

The Silver Legion of America, commonly known as the Silver Shirts, was an underground William Dudley Pelley that was headquarted in Asheville, North Carolina[1] and announced publicly on January 30, 1933.


  • History 1
  • In fiction 2
  • See also 3
  • Footnotes 4
  • Further reading 5
  • External links 6
    • Archives 6.1


A canton at the upper left.

By 1934, the Silver Shirts had about 15,000 members.[3] Circa 1935 with Nazi German funding, the Silver Shirts had begun construction of the Murphy Ranch, situated on a secluded 55 acre site in the Los Angeles hills, which was meant to serve as a fortified world headquarters after the expected Fascist global conquest.[4]

Silver Shirt leader Pelley ran for [3]

After the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on Sunday, December 7, 1941, local police occupied the "world headquarters" bunker compound and detained members of the 50-man caretaker force.[4] The declaration of war on the United States by Nazi Germany and the Kingdom of Italy led to the rapid decline of the Silver Legion.

In fiction

See also


  1. ^ "The Silver Shirts: Their History, Founder, and Axtivities". August 24, 1933
  2. ^ Van Ells, Mark D. (August 2007). "Americans for Hitler". Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  3. ^ a b "The Holocaust Chronicle PROLOGUE: Roots of the Holocaust, page 89". Retrieved 2012-11-18. 
  4. ^ a b "Heil Hollywood: The Los Angeles bunker from which Hitler planned to run Nazi empire after the war". Daily Mail (London). 18 March 2012. 
  5. ^ It Can't Happen Here

Further reading

  • Joe Allen, "'It Can't Happen Here?': Confronting the Fascist Threat in the US in the Late 1930s," International Socialist Review, Part One: whole no. 85 (Sept.-Oct. 2012), pp. 26–35; Part Two: whole no. 87 (Jan.-Feb. 2013), pp. 19–28.
  • Leo Paul Ribuffo, The Old Christian Right: The Protestant Far Right from the Great Depression to the Cold War. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1983.
  • John L. Spivak, Secret Armies: The New Technique of Nazi Warfare. New York: Modern Age Books, 1939.
  • John Werly, The Millenarian Right: William Dudley Pelley and the Silver Legion of America. PhD dissertation. Syracuse University, 1972.
  • Glen Yeadon, The Nazi Hydra in America. Joshua Tree, CA: Progressive Press, 2008.

External links

  • Photo of a Silver Legion of America meeting in the 1930s:
  • The Holocaust Chronicle: PROLOGUE: Roots of the Holocaust, page 89
  • The American Jewish Committees' archive on the Silver Shirts:
  • article on Rustic Canyon's Murphy RanchAtlas Obscura


  • Silver Shirt Legion of America Washington State Division Records. 1933-1940. 0.37 cubic feet (3 reels microfilm). At the Labor Archives of Washington, University of Washington Libraries Special Collections.
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