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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives
Our History

Irby U. Scruggs

Name:  Irby U. Scruggs

Date of Birth: 1871

Date of Death: 04/30/1921

Location of Death: Knox County, TN




Prohibition Agent Irby Scruggs and a local officer stopped an automobile and seized a quantity of liquor in Knox County, TN.  While transporting the seized liquor back to their office, the local officer started drinking the liquor.  Agent Scruggs ordered him to stop and an argument followed.

The local officer, now apparently under the influence of the liquor, fired his weapon at Agent Scruggs, who was forced to return fire.  Both Agent Scruggs and the officer were sadly killed in the exchange of gunfire.


Agent Scruggs joined the Prohibition Unit on 12/1/1919, with an annual salary of $1,871. He was among the first prohibition agents assembled to enforce the Volstead Act, which took effect on 1/16/1920.


Agent Scruggs was born in Giles County, TN.  He was survived by his wife.