Coughlin, Charles E.

Coughlin, Charles E. (Edward) “Father Coughlin”

(1891–1979) activist, Catholic priest; born in Ontario, Canada. Longtime pastor of the Shrine of the Little Flower in Michigan (1926–66), he won a huge audience in the 1930s for his radio broadcasts. At first a supporter of Franklin D. Roosevelt, he later adopted ultraconservative views and anti-Semitic rhetoric and opposed U.S. entrance into World War II. In 1942 the Catholic hierarchy ordered him to stop broadcasting, and his inflammatory magazine, Social Justice, was barred from the mails as violating the Federal Espionage Act.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.