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Fletcher Knebel Edit Profile

journalist , novelist , writer

Fletcher Knebel, American writer. Served as lieutenant United States Naval Reserve, 1942-1945. Member Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Chi.


Knebel, Fletcher was born on October 1, 1911 in Dayton, Ohio, United States. Son of A.G. and Mary (Lewis) Knebel.


He graduated from high school in Yonkers, New York, spent a year studying at the University of Paris and graduated from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio during 1934.


Upon graduation, he received a job offer from the newspaper Coatesville Record of Coatesville, Pennsylvania. He spent the next 20 years working for newspapers, eventually becoming the political columnist for Cowles Publications. From 1951 to 1964, he satirized national politics and government in a nationally published column named "Potomac Fever".

During 1960, he wrote a chapter on John F. Kennedy for the book Candidates 1960. This seemed to begin a passion for writing books and he began authoring book-length works. He wrote fifteen books, most of them fiction, and all of them dealing with politics.

His best-known novel is Seven Days in May (1962, co-authored with Charles W Bailey), about an attempted military coup in the United States. The book was a great success, scoring number one on the New York Times bestseller list for almost a year, and was made into a successful movie also named Seven Days in May during 1964. Knebel was married four times from 1935 to 1985.

He committed suicide after a long bout with cancer, by taking an overdose of sleeping pills in his home in Honolulu, Hawaii, during 1993. He is the source of the quote: "Smoking is one of the leading causes of statistics.".



Served as lieutenant United States Naval Reserve, 1942-1945. Member Phi Beta Kappa, Sigma Chi. Clubs: Gridiron.


Married Constance Wood, 1985. Child by previous marriage: Jack G.

A.G. Knebel

Mary (Lewis) Knebel

Constance Wood