fdr's conffiscation of gold

  1. 1,544 Posts.
    Rick Ackerman
    July 14, 2003

    Is Our Gold Safe

    I promised to share with you some of the terrific letters I've received in response to my query about whether we should be worried about restrictions on gold ownership. The question was inspired by a reader who asked whether it might be safer to own mining shares rather than physical gold, which, as many of you will already know, was confiscated in 1933 by order of President Roosevelt. Lest anyone think our discussion is merely academic, and before we get to a letter from a very wise old-timer who insists he is not a gold bug, let's ponder Roosevelt's edict, in his own words:

    "I, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States of America, do declare that said national emergency still continues to exist and pursuant to said section to do hereby prohibit the hoarding gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates within the continental United States by individuals, partnerships, associations and corporations and hereby prescribe the following regulations for carrying out the purposes of the order:

    "Section 1. For the purpose of this regulation, the term 'hoarding' means the withdrawal and withholding of gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates from the recognized and customary channels of trade. The term 'person' means any individual, partnership, association or corporation.

    "Surrender Your Gold"

    "Section 2. All persons are hereby required to deliver on or before May 1, 1933, to a Federal Reserve bank or a branch or agency thereof or to any member bank of the Federal Reserve System all gold coin, gold bullion, and gold certificates now owned by them or coming into their ownership on or before April 28, 1933, except the following:

    "(a) Such amount of gold as may be required for legitimate and customary use in industry, profession or art within a reasonable time, including gold prior to refining and stocks of gold in reasonable amounts for the usual trade requirements of owners mining and refining such gold.

    "(b) Gold coin and gold certificates in an amount not exceeding in the aggregate $100.00 belonging to any one person; and gold coins having recognized special value to collectors of rare and unusual coins.

    "(c) Gold coin and bullion earmarked or held in trust for a recognized foreign government or foreign central bank or the Bank for International Settlements.

    "(d) Gold coin and bullion licensed for the other proper transactions (not involving hoarding) including gold coin and gold bullion imported for the re-export or held pending action on applications for export license."

    There was more to it, but you get the gist. And let's admit it: You were somewhat surprised to learn how overweening the U.S. government had been in its demands -- perhaps even shocked to realize that such demands could have become law in America. But they did, with the result that some citizens will never again trust the government to protect economic liberty in times of severe crisis. Which brings us to this letter, from an old-timer whose distrust runs deep:

    If you want to go further checkout 321Gold.
    This couldn't possibly happen here? Could it?
    We are safe; our PM has never lied in his life.
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