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The Commodores backers

The Commodores backers assemble in the home of Jackson Parkhurst

The Commodores backer's are a group of rich, elderly men who supported Commodore Louis Kaestner in his attempted political coup against Atlantic City Treasurer Nucky Thompson. They invested $70,000 dollars in buying alcohol as part of the plan to usurp Thompson's political power and control of bootlegging in Atlantic City. The group consists of power broker Leander Cephas Whitlock, war profiteer Jackson Parkhurst and his fellow memorial committee members Mr. Darlington, Mr. Ennis, Mr. Markham and Mr. Webber.

Their influence within the Ku Klux Klan was used to arrange an assault on a bootlegging warehouse controlled by Thompson loyalist and African American community leader Chalky White. Their financial support was also used to bribe the local coast guard to allow their shipments of alcohol through and to stop shipments intended for Nucky Thompson's organization. They became concerned with their chances of success when Thompson responded by blowing up their alcohol storage warehouse and The Commodore disappeared from public life following a stroke. They meet with The Commodore's illegitimate son Jimmy Darmody and his co-conspirator Eli Thompson to discuss their concerns on memorial day 1921.

Whitlock and the others congratulate Darmody on his speech. Parkhurst is the dissenting voice, dismissing sentiment as cheap and reminding the others that he is the only one to have served in uniform. Eli asks about Parkhurst’s service and is told that he served at Fort Carney, Wyoming with the 9th Cavalry. Parkhurst describes his unit of just 32 men slaughtering 2000 Indians with the new Springfield rifles. Whitlock reminds Parkhurst that he has been more successful in recent conflicts — making over a million dollars supplying chipped beef to the army in World War I. Jimmy remembers hating eating the beef while in service. Jimmy calls Parkhurst a great man and Parkhurst demands that they talk business. The committee then begin to berate Eli and Jimmy for the destruction of their warehouse and their failure to return on the investment they made. Eli tries to reassure the committee, but they want to hear from the Commodore. Jimmy claims the Commodore has given him the authority to handle the matter. The committee warn Jimmy that they are not to be crossed and he laughs at the potential consequence of being thrown out of the yacht club. Parkhurst strikes Jimmy on the temple with his cane, breaking the skin. He tells him he needs to learn respect. Jimmy stands and exits the meeting. Eli pursues him but cannot convince him to return.

Jimmy later ends up killing Parkhurst, proving a point to him that he is not to be disrespected. This action alienates the other backers except for Whitlock and they stop supporting Jimmy's rebellion.