About Franklin MacVeagh
Franklin MacVeagh (November 22, 1837 – July 6, 1934) was an American banker and Treasury Secretary.
Born in Chester County, Pennsylvania, he graduated from Yale University in 1858, where he was a member of Skull and Bones. He graduated from Columbia Law School in 1864. He worked as a wholesale grocer and lawyer. He had been director of the Commercial National Bank of Chicago for 29 years when President William Howard Taft asked him to be Secretary of the Treasury in 1909. He did not tackle the pressing problem of currency reform, leaving it to the National Monetary Commission, which had been established by the Aldrich-Vreeland Act of 1908. He did, however, stress the urgency of reform in his annual report. He is remembered for increasing the efficiency and general progressiveness of the Treasury Department: He abolished 450 unnecessary positions, rehabilitated the U.S. Customs Service with the introduction of electric automatic weighing devices and accepted certified checks instead of currency for customs and internal revenue payments. He was also involved in the creation of the buffalo nickel.
He was brother to Wayne MacVeagh, an Attorney General of the United States.
His Washington D.C., home at 2600 16th St., NW, was designed and built in 1906, by noted architect George Oakley Totten, Jr., and was known as the "Pink Palace." It is now home to the Inter-American Defense Board.
MacVeagh died in 1934 and is interred at Graceland Cemetery in Chicago.