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Nye Committee Members and Special Investigators, Washington, D.C., photograph by the Associated Press, December 3, 1934

After careful negotiation, the Senate selected Senator Gerald P. Nye of North Dakota to lead its investigation. Respected for his work during the Teapot Dome investigation, Nye had introduced the original resolution calling for an investigation of the munitions industry.

Associated Press

Nye Committee Members and Special Investigators

The Nye Committee

During the 1920s and 1930s, a number of authors, high-ranking officials, members of Congress, and pacifist groups claimed profit-hungry arms manufacturers had unduly influenced America’s decision to enter World War I. As conflicts in Europe recurred in the 1930s, some Americans grew concerned that arms manufacturers might pressure the United States to enter another conflict overseas. The Senate created a special committee in 1934 to investigate the sale of munitions in World War I, known as the Nye Committee, after its chairman Senator Gerald P. Nye of North Dakota.

We are very anxious that you investigate the Armament Business, we know too much about the futility of the last war, and will never support another.

Miss Mabel Harman, Mrs. Martha Harman, and Mrs. Charles Bachman, Postcard to Senator Gerald P. Nye of North Dakota, March 1, 1934