Levinson, Salmon Oliver

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LEVINSON, SALMON OLIVER (1865–1941), U.S. lawyer and world peace advocate. Levinson, who was born in Noblesville, Indiana, was admitted to the Illinois bar in 1891, and began to practice law in Chicago. Although subsequently recognized as the successful corporation lawyer who reorganized both the personal affairs and the companies of industrial tycoon George Westinghouse, Levinson became particularly prominent in 1915 for his "outlawry of war" idea and his attempt to start an international peace movement during World War i. He opposed the terms of the Versailles Treaty, which he considered unduly harsh and not conducive to world peace. In 1920 Levinson backed Warren G. Harding, who had espoused Levinson's idea of outlawing war, for the presidency. Although Levinson at first advocated and then opposed U.S. entry into the League of Nations, he did not work with the U.S. delegation to the Disarmament Conference (1921) and later urged U.S. entry into the World Court (1925). In 1927 he presented the Levinson Plan which called for the readjusting of German reparations and allied and interallied debts, and world peace. Levinson sponsored and helped draft the Kellogg-Briand peace pact, later ratified by 15 countries (1928). He donated two large collections of documents to the University of Chicago (1937, 1938) concerning his national and international activities and descriptions of his meetings.