President Kennedy’s Executive Order (E.O.) 11110 modified the pre-existing Executive Order 10289 issued by U.S. President Harry S. Truman in 1951, and stated the following:
The Secretary of the Treasury is hereby designated and empowered to perform the following-described functions of the President without the approval, ratification, or other action of the President…
The order then lists tasks (a) through (h) which the Secretary may now do without instruction from the President. None of the powers assigned to the Treasury in E.O. 10289 relate to money or to monetary policy. Kennedy’s E.O. 11110 then instructs that:
SECTION 1. Executive Order No. 10289 of September 9, 1951, as amended, is hereby further amended (a) By adding at the end of paragraph 1 thereof the following subparagraph (j):
‘(j) The authority vested in the President by paragraph (b) of section 43 of the Act of May 12, 1933, as amended (31 U.S.C. 821(b)), to issue silver certificates against any silver bullion, silver, or standard silver dollars in the Treasury not then held for redemption of an outstanding silver certificates, to prescribe the denominations of such silver certificates, and to coin standard silver dollars and subsidiary silver currency for their redemption,’ and (b) By revoking subparagraphs (b) and (c) of paragraph 2 thereof.
SECTION 2. The amendments made by this Order shall not affect any act done, or any right accruing or accrued or any suit or proceeding had or commenced in any civil or criminal cause prior to the date of this Order but all such liabilities shall continue and may be enforced as if said amendments had not been made.
John F. Kennedy,
THE WHITE HOUSE,
June 4, 1963.
E.O. 11110 was not reversed by President Lyndon B. Johnson and the section added to E.O. 10289 remained on the books until President Ronald Reagan issued Executive Order 12608 on September 9, 1987 as part of a general clean-up of executive orders. E.O. 12608 specifically revoked the section added by E.O. 11110 which effectively revoked the entire Order. By this time, however, the remaining legislative authority behind E.O. 11110 had been repealed by Congress when Pub.L. 97–258 was passed in 1982.
In March 1964, Secretary of the Treasury C. Douglas Dillon halted redemption of silver certificates for silver dollars. In the 1970s, large numbers of the remaining silver dollars in the mint vaults were sold to the collecting public for collector value. All redemption in silver ceased on June 24, 1968.
See also: John F. Kennedy assassination conspiracy theories § Federal Reserve conspiracy
Jim Marrs, in his book Crossfire, presented the theory that Kennedy was trying to rein in the power of the Federal Reserve, and that forces opposed to such action might have played at least some part in the assassination. According to Marrs, the issuance of Executive Order 11110 was an effort by Kennedy to transfer power from the Federal Reserve to the United States Department of the Treasury by replacing Federal Reserve Notes with silver certificates. Actor and author Richard Belzer named the responsible parties in this theory as American “billionaires, power brokers, and bankers … working in tandem with the CIA and other sympathetic agents of the government.”
A 2010 article in Research magazine discussing various controversies surrounding the Federal Reserve stated that “the wildest accusation against the Fed is that it was involved in Kennedy’s assassination.” Critics of the theory note that Kennedy called for and signed legislation phasing out Silver Certificates in favor of Federal Reserve Notes, thereby enhancing the power of the Federal Reserve; and that Executive Order 11110 was a technicality that only delegated existing presidential powers to the Secretary of the Treasury for administrative convenience during a period of transition.
Executive Order 6102
History of the United States dollar
United States Note
“New Kennedy Silver Policy”. Southeast Missourian. AP. November 28, 1961. p. 8.
“Silver Sale by Treasury Ended; President Seeks Support Repeal”. New York Times. November 29, 1961. p. 1.
Economic Report of the President, p. XXIII. January 21, 1963. House document No. 28, 88th Congress, 1st Session. U.S. Govt. Printing Office.
Silver Legislation, April 3, 1963, House of Representatives Report No. 183, 88th Congress, 1st Session.
“Silver Act Repeal Plan Wins House Approval”. New York Times. April 11, 1963.
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