Raskob, John J. (John Jakob), 1879-1950Variant names
John Raskob was born in Lockport, N.Y. on March 19, 1879. He was educated in the area's public schools and after holding a number of positions as a stenographer and secretary went to work for The Johnson Company of Lorain, Ohio, in August 1900. The Johnson Company had been recently purchased by Pierre S. du Pont. Two years later he became Pierre S. du Pont's private secretary, and when du Pont became treasurer of E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. on March 4, 1904, Raskob became his special assistant. In August 1911 Raskob became the assistant treasurer of the Du Pont Company. During the 1910s Raskob played an increasingly active role in Du Pont's major subsidiaries. In 1913 he became director of Du Pont Fabrikoid Company. The next year he was named treasurer of the E.I. du Pont de Nemours Powder Company. In 1915 he became secretary and treasurer of the Christiana Securities Company. Later that year he became a director, treasurer, and member of the Finance and Executive Committee of E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. When Pierre du Pont began to acquire control over the General Motors Corporation, Raskob also became a director of G.M. Raskob was a director of the General Motors Acceptance Corp. from 1919 to 1929 and vice president for finance of the Du Pont Company from 1918 to 1946.
During the 1920s Raskob became active in Democratic Party politics and from 1928-1932 served as chairman of the Democratic National Committee. He was an important financial backer of Governor Alfred E. Smith when he ran for president in 1928. After the election of Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1932 Raskob became a prominent opponent of the New Deal and two years later was a founding member of the American Liberty League. In 1930 he became vice president of Empire State, Inc., which operated the Empire State Building. During the post-war years he was active in Catholic charities. In 1945 he formed the Raskob Foundation for Catholic Activities in Delaware. John J. Raskob died on October 15, 1950.
From the description of Papers, 1900-1956. (Hagley Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122503458
During the 1920s John J. Raskob and Pierre S. du Pont were leaders of the Association Against the Prohibition Amendment. Raskob played a prominent role within the Democratic Party rallying support for repeal. Raskob was an early supporter of New York Governor Alfred E. Smith's efforts to capture the 1928 Democratic presidential nomination. After Smith was nominated, Raskob became chairman of the Democratic National Committee. During the years between 1928 and 1932 Raskob continued to chair the DNC raising more than 2 1/2 million dollars to retire the debt from the 1928 campaign. He also attempted to restructure the party's apparatus - hiring for the first time a large full-time, permanent paid staff, which he attempted to organize according to "business principles". Raskob committed himself to the Democratic Party because he felt that this was the best vehicle for repeal of prohibition. In 1932 Raskob and Pierre S. du Pont opposed the nomination of Franklin D. Roosevelt as they hoped for a more conservative Presidential candidate. After Roosevelt's nomination, James Farley replaced Raskob as chairman of the DNC.
During the 1930s Raskob became a vocal critic of Franklin D. Roosevelt's New Deal. By 1936 he was supporting the Republican Party as he attempted to force the Democrats to repay the $900,000 loan that he had given to the DNC in 1928.
From the description of Democratic National Committee papers, 1928-1938. (Hagley Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122333711
|Place Name||Admin Code||Country|
|New York (State)--New York|
|New York (N.Y.)|
|Business and politics|
|Democratic Party (U.S.)|
|Capitalists and financiers|
|New Deal, 1933-1939|
|Automobile industry and trade|