John G. Crommelin
|John Geraerdt Crommelin, Jr.|
|Born||October 2, 1902
|Died||November 2, 1996
|Allegiance||United States of America|
|Service/branch||United States Navy|
|Unit||Naval aviation, USS Enterprise, Navy headquarters|
|Battles/wars||World War II|
|Other work||Gubernatorial, Senate, Vice Presidential and Presidential candidate|
Born in Montgomery, Alabama as eldest of five brothers, he graduated from the United States Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland in 1923. Previously he grew up in Montgomery and in Elmore County, Alabama.
Crommelin earned a reputation as a courageous and skillful naval aviator, and the nickname "bomb-run John". He served as an executive officer as well as air officer aboard the Enterprise and was chief of staff aboard the carrier Liscombe Bay when it was sunk in the Makin Island campaign off the Gilbert Islands.
In 1949 he served at Navy headquarters in The Pentagon at the rank of captain. He became there a vocal critic of  military politics, warning of the dangers of concentrating military authority in the hands of a few, despite being in active service. Captain Crommelin publicly complained that the Defense Department was scuttling naval air power and showing improper favor to the Air Force, and that "a Prussian General Staff system of the type employed by Hitler" was being imposed on the armed forces under unification.
Crommelin was publicly reprimanded by Admiral Forrest P. Sherman, then Chief of Naval Operations, for making public confidential Navy letters linking top admirals to active opposition against unification. He was transferred to San Francisco, California. After he continued his criticism in the face of orders to keep silent, he was ordered by Admiral Sherman to be furloughed at half pay, beginning early in 1950.
His activity and views became publicly well-known. In 1950 The New York Times's military affairs expert Hanson W. Baldwin wrote that Captain Crommelin was a "stormy petrel who wouldn't shut up." Others consider him another "Eagle of the Sea" plucked by "The harpies of the shore...".
Crommelin retired from active duty with the rank of Rear Admiral in May 1950, after 30 years of service. He went to operate a part of his family plantation, named Harrogate Springs, in Elmore County, raising a variety of crops.
USS Crommelin, the twenty-eighth ship of the Oliver Hazard Perry class of guided-missile frigates, is named for the Crommelin brothers, although inclusion of John G. is presently considered politically incorrect although his photograph appears with his brothers on the military website. Despite his later misguided political efforts, he is still recognized as a naval hero.
Although he was widely praised and credited for his courage in speaking out for his views and for his previous distinguished combat career, Crommelin's reputation suffered from his later political involvement. He was an open and unashamed racist, segregationist and anti-Semite, even when such sentiments were becoming less fashionable in Alabama.
Alongside his Senatorial and Gubernatorial bids in Alabama, he was nominated for Vice President by the minor far-right National States' Rights Party (not to be confused with the more moderate Dixiecrats), as the running mate of Governor of Arkansas Orval Faubus.
None of his electoral bids was successful.
He married Lillian E. Landis in 1930. They had two daughters and one son.
- J. Lister Hill (D) (inc.) – 125,534 (76.54%)
- John G. Crommelin (Independent) – 38,477 (23.46%)
Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate from Alabama, 1956
- J. Lister Hill (inc.) – 247,519 (68.20%)
- John G. Crommelin – 115,440 (31.81%)
Alabama gubernatorial election, 1958 (Democratic primary)
- John Malcolm Patterson – 196,859 (31.82%)
- George Wallace – 162,435 (26.26%)
- Jimmy Faulkner – 91,512 (14.79%)
- A.W. Todd – 59,240 (9.58%)
- Laurie Battle – 38,955 (6.30%)
- George Hawkins – 24,332 (3.93%)
- C.C. Owen – 15,270 (2.47%)
- Karl Harrison – 12,488 (2.02%)
- Billy Walker – 7,963 (1.29%)
- W.E. Dodd – 4,753 (0.77%)
- John G. Crommelin – 2,245 (0.36%)
- Shearen Elebash – 1,177 (0.19%)
- James Gulatte – 798 (0.13%)
- Shorty Price – 655 (0.11%)
Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate from Alabama, 1960
- John Sparkman (inc.) – 335,722 (86.68%)
- John G. Crommelin – 51,571 (13.32%)
- John F. Kennedy/Lyndon B. Johnson (D) – 34,220,984 (49.9%) and 303 electoral votes (22 states carried)
- Richard Nixon/Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. (R) – 34,108,157 (49.5%) and 219 electoral votes (26 states carried)
- Harry F. Byrd/Strom Thurmond/Barry Goldwater (Independents) – 15 electoral votes (Mississippi and Alabama unpledged and faithless electors from Oklahoma)
- Unpledged electors (D) – 286,359 (0.4%) and 0 electoral votes
- Eric Hass/Georgia Cozzini (Socialist Labor) – 47,522 (0.07%)
- Rutherford L. Decker/Earle Harold Munn (Prohibition Party) -–46,203 (0.07%)
- Orval E. Faubus/John G. Crommelin (National States' Rights Party) – 44,984 (0.07%)
Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate from Alabama, 1962
- J. Lister Hill (inc.) – 363,613 (73.71%)
- Donald G. Hallmark – 72,855 (14.77%)
- John G. Crommelin – 56,822 (11.52%)
Democratic primary for the U.S. Senate from Alabama, 1966
- John Sparkman (inc.) – 378,295 (56.98%)
- Frank E. Dixon – 133,139 (20.05%)
- John G. Crommelin – 114,622 (17.26%)
- Margaret E. Stewart – 37,889 (5.71%)
United States presidential election, 1968 (Democratic primaries)
- Eugene McCarthy – 2,914,933 (38.73%)
- Robert Kennedy – 2,305,148 (30.63%)
- Stephen M. Young – 549,140 (7.30%)
- Lyndon B. Johnson – 383,590 (5.10%)
- Thomas C. Lynch – 380,286 (5.05%)
- Roger D. Branigin – 238,700 (3.17%)
- George Smathers – 236,242 (3.14%)
- Hubert Humphrey – 166,463 (2.21%)
- Unpledged – 161,143 (2.14%)
- Scott Kelly – 128,899 (1.71%)
- George Wallace – 34,489 (0.46%)
- Richard Nixon (write-in) – 13,610 (0.18%)
- Ronald Reagan (write-in) – 5,309 (0.07%)
- Ted Kennedy – 4,052 (0.05%)
- Paul C. Fisher – 506 (0.01%)
- John G. Crommelin – 186 (0.00%)
|Party political offices|
|National States' Rights Party Vice Presidential nominee
J. B. Stoner