John Washington Butler 1875-1952

John Washington Butler 1875-1952

Evolution Bill Author, Died in 1952 At The Age of 76

John Washington Butler was an American farmer and a Tennessee State Legislator from 1923-1927 . He was the author of Tennessee’s “Anti-Evolution Bill” in 1925. During the 1925 session of the State House of Representatives, while representing three counties northeast of Nashville, Tennessee along the Kentucky border, he introduced and secured passage of the anti-evolution teaching law. It was under this law that John Thomas Scopes was tried in Rhea County, Tennessee for violating this law. Scopes was defended by several lawyers, one being Clarence Darrow from Chicago, Illinois. William Jennings Bryan assisted the prosecution. Scopes was found guilty by a jury and fined $100.00 by Judge John Tate Raulston. Butler passed away at his home on September 24, 1952 after suffering injuries in a fall. He was 76 years old at his death. He was buried in the Butler Cemetery in Lafayette, Macon County, Tennessee.


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Published byDean

Born and raised in Dayton Tennessee, I have served in various public service positions in the past. I have a great interest in the History of our town. This site is a way for me to share some of the great history of the area.

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