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World War II: Congress Repeals the 1939 Neutrality Act

(November 17, 1941)

[Public Law No. 294, 77th Congress.]


To repeal Sections 2, 3, and 6 of The Neutrality Act of 1939, and for other purposes.


Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives of the U.S. of America in Congress assembled, that Section 2 of The Neutrality Act of 1939 (relating to commerce with states engaged in armed conflict), and Section 3 of such act (relating to combat area) are hereby repealed.


Section 6 of The Neutrality Act of 1939 (relating to the arming of American vessels) is hereby repealed; and during the unlimited national emergency, proclaimed by the President on May 27, 1941, the President is authorized, through such agency as he may designate, to arm, or to permit or cause to be armed, any American vessel as defined in such Act. The provision of Section 16 of the Criminal Code (relating to hands from armed vessels on clearing) shall not apply to any such vessel.

Approved, November 17, 1941, 4:30 P.M., E.S.T.

Sources: ibiblio