Name: John Milch

Age/DoB: 66  

County of Conviction: Lewis & Clark

Judicial District: 1st

Case No: 1455

Date of Conviction: Information filed May 31, 1918

Sentence: 1-2 years (suspended), plus $1,800 fine








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Allegations: "They expect us to buy Liberty Bonds, donate to the Red Cross and every God-damned thing, and the country won't do a fucking thing for us. We didn't have any business to go into a war in that place; we were out of it and should have stayed out of it. This is supposed to be a free country but I be damned if it is. They tell you what to eat and what to drink. They are so God damn foolish they will tell you what name you have got to wear, but I be damned if I change my name. My name is Milch and I am German and I am damn proud of it. What did this country ever do for us except take taxes and revenue and don't give you a damn thing in return."


Case Details: Sole prosecution witness was convicted felon who had worked as spy for Anaconda Copper Mining Co. Brother August put up bail money for his brothers and nearly lost it when judge ordered fines paid out of bail, but later changed his mind. John then paid his own fine. Did not serve time in prison.


Personal Information:  Born in Baden Baden. Served 2 years in German army and a year after discharge came to  US. For a number of years, was in the saloon business in Butte. In Helena, he was the proprietor of the Milwaukee Saloon, formerly conducted the Silver Dollar Bar on No. Main St, in business in Helena for many years "and was at one time reputed to be wealthy." Co-owner of IXL Hotel and Harmonia Concert Hall and Saloon in Helena. 


The Montana Sedition Project