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The Silver Legion of America, commonly known as the Silver Shirts, was an American fascist organization founded by William Dudley Pelley on January 30, 1933, coincidentally, the same day Adolf Hitler, whom Pelley admired, seized power in Germany.
American Silver Shirts
The Silver Legion’s emblem was a scarlet 'L'. It stood for Loyalty to the American Republic, Liberation from materialism and, of course, the Silver Legion itself.
The uniform of the Silver Legion members consisted of a campaign hat, blue corduroy trousers, leggings, tie, and silver shirt with a scarlet "L" over the heart. Pelley hoped to seize power in a 'silver revolution' and set himself up as dictator of the United States.
The Book predicts that “one cometh after him” who would succeed. This is generally conceded to refer to Crowley’s student C.S. Jones, who did indeed uncover a key to the text some years later. The cipher or ‘code’ implied by the key was recorded by Jones in his magical diary for October 31st, 1918. A careful reading of this footnote reveals that the letters A, L and W, in some sequence, form the first three letters of a cipher.
Since the number Eleven is more than hinted at in The Book of the Law itself as a ‘key’ it theoretically is easy enough to note that, in standard alphabetical sequence, there are eleven spaces between A and L, and another eleven between L and W.
But many decades were to pass before a group in England calling itself the OAA, and its American counterpart, QBLH, were to complete the sequence and “obtain the order and value of the English Alphabet” as called for in The Book of the Law itself.“This key we have been considering,” says an article in Thelema in 1980, “can be understood from either of two courses. 11 is the number of Magick, and when we number every 11th letter of the Alphabet, we arrive with ALW…P.”
-- Secret Rituals of the Men in Black, by Allen Greenfield
By 1934, the Silver Shirts had about 15,000 members. Most members were of the lower classes. The movement's strength dwindled after 1934. Four years later, the Silver Legion's membership was down to about 5,000. In 1941, the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor and the subsequent declaration of war on the United States by Nazi Germany and the Kingdom of Italy led to the immediate collapse of the Silver Legion.
• A fictionalized depiction of the Silver Shirts forms a large part of the plot in the thriller The Night Letter by Paul Spike.
• The Silver Shirts are also a British political movement in Harry Turtledove's American Empire and Settling Accounts series of alternate history novels. They are likely an analog of the British Union of Fascists, as Oswald Mosley is a prominent leader.
• The Millenarian Right: William Dudley Pelley and the Silver Legion of America by John Werly (Ph.D. diss. Syracuse University, 1972)
• Ribuffo, Leo Pual, Protestants on the Right: William Dudley Pelley, Gerald B. Winrod and Gerald L.K. Smith, two volumes, Yale University, 1976 Liberation magazine, January 1936, New York City Library
• Spivak, John L., Secret Armies: The New Technique of Nazi Warfare, Modern Age Books, New York, 1939.
• Yeadon, Glen (2008). The Nazi Hydra in America. Progressive Press. pp. 700. ISBN 0-930852-43-5.