May 7, 2014 - Issue: Vol. 160, No. 68 — Daily Edition113th Congress (2013 - 2014) - 2nd Session
RECOGNIZING MARRINER S. ECCLES; Congressional Record Vol. 160, No. 68
(Senate - May 07, 2014)
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[Page S2787] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] RECOGNIZING MARRINER S. ECCLES Mr. HATCH. Over time, many Utahns have been honored for their contributions to our country, and perhaps no one contributed more to our Nation's economic success at such a critical time than Marriner S. Eccles. I am honored to stand with the Eccles family this week as the Federal Reserve unveils a statue of Marriner Eccles in the atrium of the Marriner S. Eccles Building of the Federal Reserve Board in Washington, DC. Marriner Stoddard Eccles was born in Logan, UT, on September 9, 1890, the oldest of nine children. Following the death of his father, who had become a leading industrialist with numerous enterprises, Marriner, at the young age of 22, took over the leadership of his father's businesses that were left to his mother, Ellen Eccles, and Marriner and his siblings. Previously, Marriner had worked in several of his father's businesses, had served a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, LDS, in Scotland and had attended Brigham Young College in Logan. A superb business analyst and bold administrator, he reorganized and consolidated his father's industrial conglomerate and banking network. Eccles, along with his brother George, joined with the Browning family in Ogden, UT, to form the Eccles-Browning Affiliated Banks, believed to be the first multibank holding company in the United States. With the onset of the Great Depression of the 1930s, banks around the country faced customers rushing to withdraw their deposits. The Eccles- Browning Affiliated Banks withstood several bank runs, and in the process, Eccles began to understand the need for a compensatory fiscal and monetary policy. In July of 1933, Eccles was one of the experts summoned by the Senate Finance Committee to travel to Washington to counsel Congress on the profound economic turmoil that was occurring across the country. Eccles delivered 38 pages of testimony, including a distinct 5-point plan for fixing the economy. ``We must correct the causes of the depression rather than deal with the effects of it!'' became one of the most quoted lines from Eccles' dramatic testimony. His five-point plan included unemployment relief through direct aid to the States, a bank deposit guarantee program, canceling the World War I Allies' war debt, implementing a national minimum wage, and establishing a national economic planning board. Eccles made his points clearly enough that the Roosevelt administration invited Eccles to join as an Assistant Treasury Secretary. Even when asked by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to become a Governor of the Federal Reserve Board, Eccles stood strong and replied he would ``not unless fundamental changes [were] made in the (Federal Reserve).'' Eccles' involvement with policymaking did not stop there. He became involved with the Emergency Banking Act of 1933, the Federal Housing Act of 1934, and the 1933 law creating the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. With FDR's blessing, Eccles rewrote the 1935 Federal Reserve Act and became the first Chairman of the reorganized Federal Reserve Board, serving from 1936 to 1948. In February 1944, Roosevelt appointed Eccles to another 14-year term and Eccles stayed on the Board until 1951, when he resigned, marking a total of 17 years of service. Eccles' talents combined with the policies he supported helped counter the recession crisis of 1937-1938, which in turn helped build America's economic strength prior to the attack on Pearl Harbor and World War II. Many at the time considered Marriner Eccles' policies to be radical, but there is little doubt that his influence at the Federal Reserve continues to benefit our country today. It is my honor to stand with the Eccles family this week and unveil yet another tribute to this remarkable Utahn we are so proud of. ____________________