Alexander Mitchell Palmer

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Palmer, Alexander Mitchell

(pä`mər), 1872–1936, American politician, b. Moosehead, Pa. Admitted (1893) to the bar, he built up a large law practice, became a leader in the state Democratic party, and served (1909–15) in Congress. In 1912, Palmer helped swing the Democratic convention to nominate Woodrow Wilson for President. He was appointed (1913) judge of the U.S. Court of Claims and then (1917) alien-property custodian. As U.S. Attorney General (1919–21), he initiated the notorious "Palmer Raids," in which some 3,000 allegedly subversive aliens were rounded up for deportation. Ultimately only a few hundred were deported; the vast majority were released.

Bibliography

See R. K. Murray, Red Scare: A Study in National Hysteria, 1919–1920 (1955); S. Coben, A. Mitchell Palmer: Politician (1963, repr. 1972).

References in periodicals archive ?
In 1919, after the explosion of a bomb in front of the house of Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer, a series of raids were carried out against immigrants.
The raids were initiated by A. Mitchell Palmer, the attorney general under President Woodrow Wilson, a Democrat.
He agreed with his boss, Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer, who expressed shock that anyone in Congress could be interested in the word of "these ignorant aliens" as against that of "these splendid men, these real Americans" in Hoover's department.
He first made the news by putting anarchist Emma Goldman and several hundred aliens on a deportation ship bound for Russia, and he became instantly famous as a leader of Attorney General A. Mitchell Palmer's Red Raids of 1919-1920, in which as many as four thousand immigrants a night were arrested and charged with being subversives.