NEW YORK (Mar. 9)
“The alleged Franklin document is merely a forgery and a crude one at that,” it was established in 1935 by Prof. Charles A. Beard, noted historian, after the reputed statement had been printed in William Dudley Pelley’s Silver Shirt organ “Liberation” and reproduced elsewhere in the United States and abroad.
Prof. Beard told in the Jewish Frontier how he had investigated the alleged declaration and found that the “private diary” of Charles Pinckney, from which the Franklin assertion was supposed to have been quoted, did not exist, and that Franklin, far from being anti-Semitic, had high regard for the Jews.
“This alleged ‘prophecy’ ascribed to Franklin is a crude forgery, and his name should be cleared of the crass prejudices attributed to him,” said Dr. Beard. “There is in our historical records no evidence whatever of any basis for the falsehood. Whoever encounters this piece of falsehood should nail it at once.”
After publication in the Liberation, the alleged statement had been issued by the Weltdienst, international anti-Jewish news service, and printed in the Volksbund, Swiss Nazi organ. Der Stuermer, Julius Streicher’s weekly, then picked it up and it was subsequently circulated in New York by Robert E. Edmondson, anti-Semitic propagandist.
Dr. John Musser, dean of the Graduate School at New York University and authority on the life of Franklin, today also denounced the purported document as a fabrication.