Ammon Hennacy

About Ammon Hennacy

Who is it?: Christian Anarchist, Social Activist
Birth Day: July 24, 1893
Birth Place: Negley, Ohio, United States
Cause of death: Heart attack
Spouse(s): Selma Melms (1919–1964) Joan Thomas (1965–1970)

Ammon Hennacy

Ammon Hennacy was born on July 24, 1893 in Negley, Ohio, United States, is Christian Anarchist, Social Activist. Ammon Ashford Hennacy was an Irish American pacifist and social activist prominently known for his works as a Christian anarchist. In his early adult years, he was an atheist and a supporter of big government. He passionately espoused socialism and the international union movement. His views were so extreme that he claimed to be in training to kill capitalists. However, his beliefs underwent a radical transformation after a two year prison sentence for resistance to the draft in World War I. After he organized a hunger strike among the prisoners, he was placed in solitary confinement. The only available book was the Bible and he completely renounced his former views and became a pacifist. After coming out of imprisonment, he voluntarily lived a life of poverty so that he would not have to pay taxes, some of which were used to support the military. He fasted and picketed in protest of the death penalty and the use of taxes in war. He referred to himself as a ‘Christian anarchist’ based primarily on Jesus' Sermon on the Mount. He lived a life of simplicity and believed in what he called his ‘One-Man Revolution’ against violence, sin, and coercion. He refused to support war or capital punishment and denied to pay taxes, working tirelessly for the homeless and indigent and for world peace. His life was an exceptional journey of self-awakening.
Ammon Hennacy is a member of Activists

Does Ammon Hennacy Dead or Alive?

As per our current Database, Ammon Hennacy has been died on January 14, 1970(1970-01-14) (aged 76)\nSalt Lake City, Utah, U.S..

🎂 Ammon Hennacy - Age, Bio, Faces and Birthday

When Ammon Hennacy die, Ammon Hennacy was 76 years old.

Popular As Ammon Hennacy
Occupation Activists
Age 76 years old
Zodiac Sign Leo
Born July 24, 1893 (Negley, Ohio, United States)
Birthday July 24
Town/City Negley, Ohio, United States
Nationality United States

🌙 Zodiac

Ammon Hennacy’s zodiac sign is Leo. According to astrologers, people born under the sign of Leo are natural born leaders. They are dramatic, creative, self-confident, dominant and extremely difficult to resist, able to achieve anything they want to in any area of life they commit to. There is a specific strength to a Leo and their "king of the jungle" status. Leo often has many friends for they are generous and loyal. Self-confident and attractive, this is a Sun sign capable of uniting different groups of people and leading them as one towards a shared cause, and their healthy sense of humor makes collaboration with other people even easier.

🌙 Chinese Zodiac Signs

Ammon Hennacy was born in the Year of the Snake. Those born under the Chinese Zodiac sign of the Snake are seductive, gregarious, introverted, generous, charming, good with money, analytical, insecure, jealous, slightly dangerous, smart, they rely on gut feelings, are hard-working and intelligent. Compatible with Rooster or Ox.

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Hennacy was born in Negley, Ohio to Quaker parents, Benjamin Frankin Hennacy and Eliza Eunice Fitz Randolph, and grew up as a Baptist. He studied at three different institutions, (a year at each one): Hiram College in Ohio in 1913, University of Wisconsin–Madison in 1914, and The Ohio State University in 1915. During this time Hennacy was a card-carrying member of the Socialist Party of America and in his words "took military drills in order to learn how to kill capitalists." He was also the secretary of Hiram College's Intercollegiate Socialist Society. At the outbreak of World War I Hennacy was imprisoned for two years in Atlanta, Georgia for resisting conscription. While in prison the only book he was allowed was the Bible. This inspired him to radically depart from his earlier beliefs; he became a Christian pacifist and a Christian anarchist. He led a hunger strike and was punished with eight months in solitary confinement. Hennacy believed that adherence to Christianity required being a pacifist and, because governments constantly threaten or use force to resolve conflicts, this meant being an anarchist.


In 1919 Hennacy married his first wife, Selma Melms, under Common law. In May 1920, Hennacy graduated from the socialist Rand School of Social Science. In 1921, Hennacy and Melms hiked around the United States passing through all 48 of the contiguous states. He settled down in 1925, buying a farm and raising his two children. In 1931, he began social work in Milwaukee and organised one of the first social worker unions. He refused to use force or self-defense even when threatened during his work, preferring instead to use nonresistance. During this time, he also refused to sign up for the draft for World War II and declared that he would not pay taxes. He also reduced his tax liability by taking up a lifestyle of simple living. Between 1942 and 1953, Hennacy worked as a migrant farm labourer in the southwest United States.


In 1952, he was baptized as a Roman Catholic by Father Marion Casey at St. Anastasia Church with Dorothy Day as his godmother. Hennacy moved to New York City in 1953, and became the associate Editor of the Catholic Worker. Hennacy engaged in many picketing protests while in New York. He illegally refused to participate in New York City's annual air raid drills, and he picketed against the Atomic Energy Commission's war preparations in Las Vegas, Cape Kennedy, Washington, D.C., and Omaha. In 1958, Hennacy fasted for 40 days in protest of nuclear weapons testing.


In 1961, Hennacy moved to Utah and organised the Joe Hill House of Hospitality in Salt Lake City. While in Utah, Hennacy fasted and picketed in protest of the death penalty and the use of taxes in war. Following a divorce from Selma in 1964, Hennacy married his second wife, Joan Thomas, in 1965. In the same year he left the Roman Catholic Church, though he continued to call himself a "non-church Christian". He wrote about his reasons for leaving and his thoughts on Catholicism, which included his belief that "Paul spoiled the message of Christ" (see Jesusism). This essay and others were published as The Book of Ammon in 1965, which has been praised for its "diamonds of insight and wisdom" but criticised for its rambling style.


In 1968, Hennacy closed the "Joe Hill House of Hospitality" and turned his attention to further protest and writing. His second and last book, The One-Man Revolution in America, was published in 1970 and consists of seventeen chapters with each one devoted to an American radical. These included Thomas Paine, William Lloyd Garrison, John Woolman, Dorothy Day, Eugene Debs, Malcolm X, Mother Jones, Clarence Darrow and Albert Parsons.


Ammon Hennacy died from a heart attack on January 14, 1970. In accordance with his wishes, his body was cremated and the ashes scattered over the graves of the Haymarket anarchists in Waldheim Cemetery in Chicago.


When Ani DiFranco gathered stories by Utah Phillips to make the 1996 album The Past Didn't Go Anywhere, she included his story about Hennacy, under the title "Anarchy". Hennacy helped shape Phillips, who often told this story.

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