A Short Review of the Frank Case
by Wytt Thompson
(1914)

This is only a short review: to write up my notes fully would require 600 pages the size of these.

While the papers in the early stages of the matter, by circulating all sorts of wild reports, some given out too hastily by the police, and some picked up here and there by the reporters, tended to poison the public mind against anyone suspected, we are here to deal with the real evidence against Frank. The short space only admits of a short review.

When it was learned Sunday morning, April 27, 1913, that a girl had been found dead-murdered-in the basement of the National Pencil Factory on Forsyth Street, in the very center of Atlanta, excitement ran high. It increased as the days sped by and all sorts of false report’s spread far and wide. When Newt Lee, the night watchman, was arrested, and then Mullinax locked up on suspicion, there was at once talk of lynching. Then came the arrest of Gantt and Frank. Mayor Woodward asked chief of police to try to stop the giving out of all sorts of misleading reports. Newspaper extras, one after another, were being cried by newsboys on every prominent corner. The state militia was notified to be in readiness.

Too many people lose their heads under such conditions, and may even commit a crime in their haste to punish the guilty. To know the real guilty party should be their real object, and to know that, we must have a trial by an unbiased and unintimidated court. The statements of witnesses should be carefully weighed, and the truthfulness of each of the witnesses carefully considered. People generally in their cool moments do this: but in time of excitement some, too many, forget themselves, and prejudge from loose gossip.

Many false reports poison the minds of the people, and though these reports may be corrected-or disputed-the effect still on the mind and is not easily removed. To start a false report to the injury of another is sinful, and to aid spreading it is not much better. To get excited and give way to prejudice or malice is not only hurtful to the mind and science of the party so indulging, but it is a "hindrance to the soul.”

We have no right to wreak vengeance on anyone. "Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord." If we our vengeance out on a fellow-being, the Lord will repay pouring His vengeance on us. We have no right to that there is no future punishment, and that because we not punish a man under our law, that he will not be punished in the course of time by a greater tribunal than of man. If we punish him without sufficient reliable of his guilt, then we commit a crime as great as that of the party may be accused. We can only ascertain the guilty and punish that party under our law and by the instruments of the law, the courts. If the court is biased and intimidated the verdict and execution would be wrong although the accused might be guilty. If he escapes the punishment here that he deserves, he is sure to get that punishment at some future time.  If we punish another illegally, then we may expect punishment ourselves. That punishment may not be immediate, but it will come. "Be sure your sin will find you out."

It is a principal of law and justice as laid down by our able judges that, "it, is better that the guilty should punishment, rather than the life or liberty of an innocent person be imperiled."  If the guilty escape here, be sure their sin will find them out.

To judge fairly in this matter, the Mary Phagan murder, it requires a knowledge of the building in which the crime took place. That building is 200 feet long and four stories high. It has a deep basement. It has on the first floor a long glazed-in office on the right as you go in from Forsyth Street.  There is some enclosure (room) to the left, making a sort of hallway back to the foot of stairway, which leads up to second floor. It is over 38 feet from the front door to the foot of that stairway. Going up the stairway from foot to top is more than 28 feet. One-third of the way up the stairs is a platform and a double door that closes the way up. Just even with this double door and to the right is the partition that cuts off all the back (and large) part of the first floor from the stairs, the hatchway (or scuttle hole), elevator box and passage way used by the pencil factory employees in going into the building from Forsyth street. The glazed-in office on the right as you go in from street, the way around the elevator shaft and around the hatch hole, and all the back of this floor was used by the Clark Woodenware Co., during 1912, and until January 15, 1913. The pencil factory had use of elevator and right of way from front door to the stairway. Since the Clark Co., left, the office and all hack of one-third (lower part) of stairway has been closed up and unoccupied. Now the much-discussed scuttle hole has a trap door that fits down close over it. This is just back of elevator shaft and about 8 feet from where one would come down the stairs from the second floor. From the bottom step of stairway to the elevator shaft is about nine feet. When you are fully up the stairs to the second floor you have gone from the street door about sixty-seven (67) feet. It is 8 or 9 steps from first floor up to the platform and double door on stairway and 16 or 17 steps then on up to the top of stairs at second floor. It is 61 and a half feet from the top of stairway back east to the front end of the building. Factory office is in the north-east corner of this floor, and it is full 60 feet from the head of the stairway to inside of the back (or so-called private) office. It is 73 feet from the top of the stairway back to the double door that cuts off the metal room. These doors have each a small glass panel in top part. The metal room extends from these glass panel doors back to the west, or back end, of the building. That distance is sixty feet and eight inches, (60' 8"). Only a few feet beyond the double door to the metal room and on the left side of the walkway is the girls' dressing room where Jim Conley says he dropped the body of the victim because as he said, it was so heavy he could not tote it. That dressing room is only 7 or 8 feet long and some 3 three feet wide, with a door in the side, next to the walkway. Just at the far end, and beside the walkway, stood the cooler of drinking water. Just there by the side of the far end of this little dressing room, and within two to four feet of the water cooler is where the so-called blood spots were found. To the right, or north, of this cooler some seventeen (17) feet is the lathe where the hair was found. This lathe is on a work bench that stands against the north wall of the building. The hair was on a ·little crank handle about two and one-half (2 ½) inches long and about the size of a man's finger. Just beyond the lathe about five or six feet is a gas jet where the girls dressed, combed or curled their hair. Just by that is a waste basket where the waste paper, hair, etc., was thrown. To the right and a little beyond where the" blood spots" were found, about 12 or 13 feet, is the eyelet machine on which ,the haskoline is used. On the right of this walkway, beginning near the head of the stairs, is a wall that encloses the varnish room. That room is 50 or 60 feet long and has two doors that open out to the hall this side of the double door, and then one door beyond the double door that opens to the hall. All the doors are this side of the dressing room door and cooler. The paints and varnishes are kept in this end of this room. Paints can be carried out at either door and would be carried right by the dresser door and water cooler. Bottles of these colors are around on many tables or work benches. They are spilled in places around over several hundred square feet. They are carried from there to the painting room on third floor.

To the left of a line drawn from the double door to back end of the building, and at the back end of the building is the stairway leading from the second to the third floor. Just over that, one leads from the third to the fourth floor. Now eighteen (18) feet to the left of this line and sixteen from the back wall is where Jim says he found the body. That is eight or ten feet from the foot of the stairway leading to the upper floors. It is over 60 feet from the double you walk back to where .Jim says· the body was found. The employee’s generally went up and down the stairs. They did not use the elevator much for the travel from one floor other. At this, or the east, end of the building, is a system of stairs.

I have been a little lengthy in this description; no one can form a correct idea of the chances of not hearing, the sounds--walking, talking, screaming-without this knowledge.

I had taken these dimensions long ago, but on reading a recent publication purporting to give some of them, and finding they did not agree with my notes, I took a tape line and went over them again.

That article states the building is about 150 feet long, when it fills an entire 200-foot lot, and is, on the second feet and eight inches inside. It states the stairway commences some 25 or 30 feet from the entrance, when it is over 38 feet. To say that "immediately back of the head of the stairway was cut off by partition, and was known as the metal room,” does not convey an idea of the distance. "There was an entrance to the metal room by means of a double glass door directly in front of the head of the stairway." It is seventy-three (73) feet from the head of the stairway, on a straight line, to the double door to the metal room. The glass is only in the top of the doors and the glass is less than is usual in such doors. Again my information obtained from employees there is that they did not go to the outer office and receive their pay from the inner office.

They were paid at a booth or stand out on the main floor and nearer to the head of the stairway. This is all right for a discussion of the law as to the admission of certain sorts of evidence, but it does not satisfy in the discussion of facts in dealing with the credibility of the witnesses.

These dimensions-these great distances-have a strong, direct bearing on the oral testimony as given by some of the witnesses. They tend to impeach some of the testimony of certain witnesses and especially that of Jim Conley, who, by the way, has already been impeached by every rule and method known to the law.

The location of the trap door, and its distance from' the second floor and Frank's office, is also important. That door is .just behind the elevator box or shaft, and about eight (8) feet to the right of the bottom step of the stairs. It is just across the little hallway there from the steps, and not in front of the steps. This hatchway or scuttle hole, is two feet by two feet and three inches-or about four and one-half square, feet. It closes with a door that fits into the floor and that can be easily lifted up. From this, down to the dirt floor of the basement, is a ladder-not stairs-made of two scantlings and a great number of rungs or rounds. The basement is deep-the ladder about twelve feet long. The basement has a dirt floor. It is .very dirty from the coal dust, ashes, cinders-almost anything that makes dirt in such a place. This is where Dalton says he went with a woman- while Jim Conley watched for him-"a mighty nasty ,place to take a woman." Yet, while some people are depraved themselves, they are still in favor of social equality-want to put everybody on a level-and having no desire to rise up themselves, would pull every-body else down to their level. At every single time he says he went down that scuttle, that floor, back and front, was occupied by the Wooden Ware Company.

I have no abuse for this man, nor any of the rest of the witnesses, not even Jim Conley. I hope Dalton may see the Warrior of his way, join the church again and live up to its teachings.

True charity does not consist in giving money alone. That may be Liberality, or even a reckless throwing away of money. True charity is a matter of mind and conscience. It consists in doing justice to everybody of every race and station in life. It does not tolerate prejudice, envy, or malice. "Faith, hope, charity; but the greatest of these is charity." It is in this sense of charity that I discuss the "Frank case."

Some of the witnesses were young and scarcely responsi­ble, being led in by the excitement of the time. Some bore malice.

As to one witness brought in to "prove" that Frank knew Mary Phagan and had made advances on her. He worked at the factory two days only. Like many others, he had spurted out some remark to the effect that he "knew a few things himself." At the time, and not on oath, he had gassed a little. Many older people do the same thing. I quote from his statement made in court on the trial and certified to by the lawyer for the prosecution and defense, and approved as correct by Judge Roan.

"I worked at the National Pencil Company during March of this year. I saw Leo Frank talking to Mary Phagan On the second floor, about the middle of March. She was going to work and he stopped to talk to her. She told him she had to go to work. She backed off and he went on towards her talking to her. That is all I saw or heard."

Cross-examined, this boy said: "That was just before dinner. Mary was going in the direction where she worked, and Mr. Frank was going the other way. I don't know whether any of the girls were still at work or not. I didn't look for them. Some of the girls came in there while this was going on and told me where to put the pencils. Lemmie Quinn’s office is right there. I don't, know whether any of the girls saw him talking to Mary or not, they were in there. It was just before the whistle blew for noon. I can't describe Mary Phagan. I don't know any of the other little girls in there. I don't remember who cal1edher Mary Phagan, a young man on the fourth floor told me her name was Mary Phagan. I don't know who he was. I don't know anybody in the factory. I can't describe any of the girls. I don't know a single one in the factory." There you have it.

The girl brought from Cincinnati was a trouble here, to her people and the police. The probation officers were unable to cope with her. She ran the streets and according to them statements, she was absolutely untru1Jhful. One policemal1, death down on Frank, said to me: "We would have proved more by her, but we were afraid the defense would pull our records on her. She is entered up at headquarters as the most notorious liar we have ever had to contend with."

She swore: "I worked at the pencil factory four months. I quit in March, 1913. I have seen Frank talk to Mary Phagan two or three times a day in the metal department. He called her Mary. He would stand pretty close to her. He would lean over in her face."

On cross-examination she said: "All the rest of the girls were there when he talked to her, I don't know what b-e was talking to her about." The other girls swear it is not so.

She swears she worked there "four months." That she "quit" in March, 1913. Now, she only worked five weeks and nine hours, and was discharged as soon as they had time to find her out. She did not work on same floor that Mary did.

Another girl swears: "I have seen Leo M. Frank talking to Mary Phagan. He would just tell, her, while she was at work, about her work. He would stand just close enough to her to tell her about her work. He would show her how to put rubbers in the pencils. That's all I saw him do. That was last summer." This girl worked on the fourth floor and Mary on the second floor. The foreman instructed, and not Frank. The witness was discharged for obscenity and vulgarity. Women and girls on the fourth floor-some of them widows and mature women with daughters there, complained at her nasty, vulgar talk and she was "fired." Foreman Quinn and the other girls swear the above statements are false.

There were two girls that swore they had seen Frank go into the dressing room on the fourth floor with one of the foreladies. There were other foreladies and foremen there. You can see all over the work floor. Several girls and some men and boys work there. The mother and sister of that particular lady were there with 'her. All know that the statement is absolutely false. One of these witnesses was a sort of tough around a city suburb. She told a girl or two she was going to the pencil factory and get a job. They told Mr. Darley they did not want her in the building. He promised not to take her in. Soon after that she came and applied. The day watchman, knowing nothing of the agreement, 'but knowing a foreman who needed a hand right then to facilitate his work, took her direct to the foreman who started her in to work. When it was known to the parties who had put Darley on notice, he declared he knew nothing of her being there. He asked him to be quiet and he would soon quietly let her out. He did this to avoid offense, and she worked there only a short time. Of course she left there with no good feeling for any superintendent or any forelady.

The other witness who swore that Frank went to the room with a forelady and stayed fifteen· or twenty minutes, two or three times, was also prompted by malice. She had a small brother who stole from the factory, was caught, and let off with the promise by this sister and the mother that the mother would give him a good whipping. These and some few other witnesses were not cross-questioned-mainly for the reason that impeachment of their testimony might have become more necessary and their personal character shown up; so their evidence was left to the jury.

The statement that Frank looked into the dressing room when girls were changing their outer skirts shows within itself that it was during working hours when no. one was supposed to be in there, that he merely looked in one time, smiled and then turned away. Besides other girls, alleged to have· been in there at the same time, swear it is not so.

C. B. Dalton, another star witness for the state-a star of second magnitude-but second only to Jim Conley-swears that he had visited the pencil factory three, four or five times. Had been in the office of Leo M. Frank two or three times. Had been down in the basement. "Saw Conley and the night watchman and he was not Conley. There would be some ladies in Mr. Frank's office. Sometimes there would be two and sometimes one. Maybe they didn't work in the mornings and they would be there in the evenings." Says he was introduced to Frank by a woman. Says he went down the scuttle hole and ladder with her. That was all in 1912, except one time in this year, 1913, and that was" about the first of January." "Frank wasn't there the last time," he swears. “I saw Mr. Frank about 2 o’clock in the afternoon. There were no· curtains drawn in the office. It was very light in there. I went to the first office near the stairway."

There was no office near the stairway unless he refers to the one on the first floor, occupied then by the Woodenware Co.

He then says, "The watchman I spoke of was a negro. I saw him about the first, of January, 1913. I saw a Negro night watchman there between September and December." Now the night watchman who preceded Newt Lee was a white man.; and he had been there two years. Newt Lee went on only three weeks before the murder-or about April 7, 1913. The woman he says he went there with swears, it is not so. She may not be reliable, but she is as good as he is. He says he walked home from the factory (presumably from the door) with two ladies. They swear it is not so. He says he paid Jim Conley a half dozen quarters or more, for watching for him when he went down that hatchway or scuttle hole and ladder with a woman. All these times that floor was occupied, by the Woodenware Company, and neither Frank nor the: pencil factory had any connection with that company.

He says, "Frank had coca-cola, lemon and lime, and beer in the office." The different office boys, messengers, the foremen and foreladies, young lady employees and older, settled lady employees, were all privileged to go into the building at any time. The doors were open to the office. The general Superintendent, superintendent of working force, drummers, were all free to go in and out. No doors were ever found shut on them. The Woodenware Company men had access to the front door. How is it none of them ever ran up against that ever watchful, ever reliable sentinel, Jim Conley 1 How was it that some of them did not run ·up on some of that beer drinking? Too many good, truthful men and women there that swear they never saw such a thing and that it could not have existed without its being· known to several of them. They- are not all bought with "Jew money," either. They are clean, truthful people.

One little boy says Mary told him that she was afraid· of Frank and wanted the compl1ny of this boy to protect her. He could only go back and forth with her, out in town and on the cars. His protecting her-a mere "bare-foot boy!" That was only boy gas. He took back much of his statement later, and swore that a detective bribed him to swear that stuff. I was not there and don't know of course that the detective did not do it, but I am sure he did not "have to." Such boys on such mat1tersdo not have to be even persuaded. They are apt to be too glib-too free to talk such stuff anyhow. I can't think the detective needed to waste any money, and don't 1Jhink he did-at least on that occasion. That boy -is in the state reformatory as a tough.

The story of the boy who told one tale and swore another illustrates this. A boy gassed a lot before court, and· when sworn on the stand in court he told a very different tale. Witnesses were put up to state what he had told before court. The court demanded to know why he, had changed his story. Bursting into a cry, he said, “Judge, I was just talking then; I am swearing now."

In this case most of the witnesses for the prosecution had their statements taken long before the trial began. An officer or other party interested in pushing the case against the accused, wrote down their statements while they were "just a talkin' then." Then and there they were signed and sworn to. There was not much chance to change their statements and escape prosecution for perjury.

Jim Conley was, however, an important exception. He made several statements, and was allowed to change them. Then he made a statement that -did not" fit in," he changed it "to fit" the plan as best he could. Then it was reduced to writing also.

Jim Conley denied that he could write for some time. Then when Frank was notified of this denial, he told them where they could find papers containing his signature. Thus confronted, he admitted that he could write, and did write for the detectives. Although on the 29th of April "experts," after comparing the death notes found by the body with Newt Lee's writing, declared Newt Lee the author of the notes, it now appeared to the detectives that Jim Conley was the author. This they put up to him and he needed, to change his former statement. This time, May 24th, he completely demolished his statement of May 18. Jim in this second written statement, says he wrote one note, that Frank looked at that, and then Frank wrote the other note. He says, "on Friday evening, before the holiday, about four minutes to one o'clock," Frank went upon the fourth floor and asked him, Conley, to come to the office. Note this statement as to the exact time. That is a low Negro characteristic. You are to understand he is exact, an-d of course, reliable. During my U. S. Government service I took the depositions of hundreds in the District of Columbia and half-dozen southwestern states. That is one of the many ways of "fooling the white folks." Jim's statements carry a full quota of such baits and catches. He claims here that Frank had him write one note and Frank wrote the other, and on Friday afternoon before the murder occurred on Saturday, said Frank wanted to send the note to his mother in Brooklyn. The whole statement is a palpable fabrication-a pot of soft soap-for the detectives. Scott swears he repeated on the 25th the story of the 24th. They questioned him about three 'hours. Mr. Scott further swears: "We saw him again on May 27th in Chief Lanford's office. Talked to him about five or six hours. We tried to impress him with the fact that Frank would not have written these notes on Friday. That that was not a reasonable story. They showed premeditation and that would not do. We pointed out to him why the first statement would not fit. We told 'him we wanted another statement. He declined to make another statement. He said he had told the truth. On May 28, Chief Lanford and I grilled him for five or six hours again, endeavoring to make clear several points which were farfetched in his statement. We pointed out to him that his statement would not do and would not fit. He then made us another long statement May 28." Scott uses the expressions, "He then made us another long statement, having been told that his previous statements show deliberation; that that could not be accepted." "We pointed out things that were improbable and told him he must do better than that." "Anything in his story that looked to be out of place we told him wouldn't do."

Conley did not tell then of the many people who came into the factory building on that fatal Saturday morning, though he was questioned fully as to that. He swore he got up at home between 9 and 9:30 Saturday morn. That he looked at clock on the Atlanta University (col.). That was a long way from the pencil factory. Says he went to Peters street then, after eating and doing other things at home. On Peters street he drank two beers, went to another saloon and shot dice, winning 90 cents, got two more beers at different times; went out and bought a half pint of whiskey, and ,drank some of it. He then tells of meeting Frank near Montag's, some three blocks from the pencil factory. Says he went on at Frank's bidding, walking just behind Frank to the factory. They went into the building, and there were some great big boxes further back near the foot of the stairs. Frank took his foot and pushed a box at the foot of the stairs and told Jim to sit there until Frank whistled. That would put him in plain view of anyone coming in. He tells of Miss Mattie Smith coming in and of Darley's walking to the door with her. Now it is known beyond all question that Mattie Smith left the factory about 9:20 o'clock-or long before Jim left his home away out Rhodes street. From the time he was on Peters street, the crap shooting, cigarette rolling he talks of, drinking beers, wine and whiskey, he could not have gotten to the factory before about 11:30 o’clock-not before 11 at the earliest.

His whole story is filled with such inconsistent statements.  He speaks of a girl going up and getting her pay and coming down. Says she was up there 7 or 8 minutes. "That she stopped just opposite him, and tore her envelope open and took out her money and counted it, shut it up in her hand and went out at the door and turned up Hunter Street." He could not see from the foot of stairs and pile of boxes which way she went. He puts this in to show that he did not snatch her purse.

On May 29th, 1918, he tells all about being sent for the body, of tying it up, taking it to the dressing room door and dropping it, "hollering" to Frank that he could not tote it, and goes through all the account of the acts that required forty (40) minutes' time. He is full in statements, tells how Frank acted when they got back up stairs. Tells how he talked and walked the floor. Just at this juncture Frank exclaims, "Here comes Emma Clark and Corinthia Hall." Says Frank told him to get into the wardrobe quick. Says he was so slow Frank told him to "hurry up, damn it!" Jim says he was in the wardrobe 7 or 8 minutes. The ladies went away. He heard them talking to Frank while he, Jim, was in the wardrobe. When Frank turned him out, they proceeded to write the notes -the death notes-found by the body of Mary Phagan. This Emma Clark was just married and was that day Mrs. Emma Clark Freeman. Mrs. Freeman, Miss C. Hall, Mrs. White and Miss Hattie Hall were all there at the same time and all know it was from 11:30 to 11:50 when these ladies were there. There were two men there in the office when Mrs. White, Mrs. Freeman and Miss Corinthia Hall went in at 11:30 to 11:35 A.M., and left at 11:45 to 11:50. White and Denham were at work on the fourth floor. These ladies all swear to the time, yet Jim says Mary's body was already carried to the basement. She must by this statement have been dead at least thirty minutes before these ladies reached the factory. Mary did not leave home till 11:45-just the time these ladies were leaving the factory.

There was a reason that day for their watching the time. Mrs. May Barrett was there from 11:15 to 12 o'clock. White and Denham were there from soon in morning till 3 P. M. They were in a position to see or hear the elevator had it, run. Jim says they went down with the body on the elevator, then came up to first floor from basement and stopped it, then ran on up to the second floor-making three starts and three stops. White and Denham would most likely have seen it at some time if it had run. It makes much noise and so does the motor;

In Tim's statement of May 28 he says the girl worked On the fourth floor, went up, stayed 7 or 8 minutes got her envelope and stopped near him at the foot of the steps and took out her money and counted it, shut it up in her hand and went out. Then he speaks of dozing off to sleep likely. Then he says for 15 or 20 minutes there was no one came in at all. That is his sleepy period. At that date he did not care to tell just when Mary went up. He tells in his statement of May 29, and also in the court at the trial of Frank, positively and fully states that they had already disposed of the body and were in the office when Mrs. Freeman and Miss C. Hall Came in. They came in at 11:35 and left at 11:45 A.M. and did not go back. In his court statement he say's Mary Phagan went up, he heard her foot steps going towards the office and after she went in the office. I heard two people walking out of the office and going like they were coming down the steps, but they didn’t come down the steps; they went back towards the metal department. After they went back there, I heard the lady scream, and I didn't hear no more, and the next person I saw coining in there was Monteen Stover. She stayed there a pretty good while; it wasn't so very long either. She came back down the steps and left." She wasn't counting any money this time. That would contradict Monteen's statement that there was nobody in the office to pay her. He could not have heard that walking either, and he swears several times in cross-examination, when questioned as to other people going up the steps and into the office, that he could not hear the walking at or in the office. He says he heard screaming. If she was screaming back in that metal room, then White and Dellham should have heard it, for they were only about half as far away as Jim Conley says he was. He says after Monteen left he heard tiptoeing by some one from the metal room and then tiptoeing back towards the metal department. You can't hear tiptoeing on second floor from where Jim was. He next says, "After 'that I kind of dozed off and went to sleep." Says next thing he heard stamping. Says Frank looked funny and his face was red." Says Frank bad a little rope or string in his hands and was rubbing his hands. Who is simple enough to believe a face would 'be red under such circumstances - Frank's complexion is not such as to turn very red under any condition, and nobody turns red over such a matter-Frank would have been deathly pale. Jim now says that after he got up the steps, Frank says, ”Did you see that little· girl who passed here just awhile ago?" “I told him I saw one come along there and she came back down again, and then I saw another one come along there and she hasn't come back down." Here he puts Monteen Stover as going up and down before Mary Phagan came.

Then he tells that Frank explained that he hit her and guess he "struck her too hard and she fell and hit her head against something." In former statement he was dozing and did not see Mary go up.

Note here two things: First, he puts Monteen Stover as going up and then coming down before Mary came in. Second, he says, "hit her head against something." It has never been determined what cut that gash in her head. Jim understands that and don't aim to tell.

There was much evidence in court as 110 the time Mary got to the factory. There are only slight discrepancies in statements as to car time. Most of that hairsplitting of time was useless except to burden the jury with a lot of chaff to sift for a few grains of wheat. Mrs. Coleman, the mother of Mary, states she left home 11:45. Car men say they were on time and Mary boarded car at 11:50. Due at crossing of Marietta and Broad streets at 12:07. Then 4½ to 5 minutes to walk to the factory, would put her there at 12 :12; and if she got off at Broad and Hunter streets at 12 :10, and then two minutes on to the factory, would again put her there 12 :12. Unless she went direct from car to factory and walked at a reasonably fast gait she would have been later-say 12:13 to 12:15.

Monteen Stover says she got there at 12:05 and stayed until 12:10, and saw nobody in the building-that everything was" quiet." She did not even see Jim Conley, the ever-present sentinel. She was there five minutes. Frank told the detectives that he was not out of his office from 12 till about 12:50. It is contended by the state that during the five minutes Monteen Stover was there Frank had Mary in the back end of the building, 180 feet away from the office. Yet, Mary had not reached the factory, by two, or more minutes after Monteen had gone away. Now if the car on which Mary rode was 2 or 3 minutes ahead of time as the state tried to prove, then Mary would have walked in before Monteen got out of the factory-they would have met in there.

Jim Conley swears May 28 that Monteen Stover got her money and came down the steps and he saw her count the money. Then he says for 15 or 20 minutes there wasn’t, any passing. Thinks he may have gone to sleep then, and was aroused by Frank's whistling twice. At that time he did not want it known that he saw Mary come in. At the trial he says Monteen came down and left, and then Quinn came in and left, and then Mary came. Then his story of the screaming, tiptoeing, etc. But before he is through testifying in court he says Mary came in and then Monteen. Then he "kind of dozed off and went to sleep," and was aroused by Frank.

Jim was on the first floor about 70 feet from the street car tracks. The Hapeville cars in and out every ten minutes, the College Park cars in and out every ten minutes: Besides these the Magnolia street cars and Stewart Avenue cars and others all traveling that track. Denham and White were not half as' far from where the crime was committed, according to Jim's statement, as Jim was; and they were less disturbed by cars and other street noises. They could have heard scream­ing three times as easily as Jim could if there had been any screaming in back part of the building on the second floor as Jim swears.

Yet, we are told all over the country that a negro could not" make up" as good a story and stick to it as well. Why the story is absolutely weak; and he don't" stick to it" at all. The average Negro can make a better story and stick to it better. Scott swore it was" an unfathomable fabrication." It is a fabrication, but not unfathomable.

Again, Jim puts the time they were moving the body to the basement, the time he was in the wardrobe, and the time taken to write the notes at 35 minutes. Four men went to the factory and while two performed the course Jim says they went through with in disposing of the body, two men timed them. They used a sack filled with wet sawdust and cinders-about the weight of a body. It took them thirty-six and one-half (36 ½) minutes. Other parties made the test of time and it required 38 to 40 minutes.

Now, Mary could not have gotten to the factory before 12:12, and a few minutes would be required for Frank's dealing with her, so that Jim could not, have been called into service before 12 :15 at the soonest. Quinn went up and spoke to Frank between 12:20 and 12:25. Mrs. White went up and saw Frank in the office and spoke to him at 12:30. She had gone in at 11:30 and out at 11:45 before that. At 12:50 Frank is on the fourth floor with Denham, White and Mrs. White. He comes down immediately and Mrs. White in passing out sees him, again in his .office. Frank goes out at 1 P.M. and is seen on the streets by several parties while on his way to his lunch at home a mile away. Where does Jim or anybody else get in that 35 to 40 minutes required to move the body?

Don't forget that Jim says, first, last and, all the time, that all this work except writing the notes was done before Mrs. Freeman and Miss CJ. Hall came to the office. They came at 11:35 and left there at 11:45 A. M., as sworn to by them and two or three competent, reliable witnesses. That was all before Mary boarded the car for town. They were not back, there that day. Mrs. White and Miss Hattie Hall were there before, during the time they were there, and after they left.

Jim says repeatedly, when questioned as to hearing the walking of several 'People he says went to Frank's office, that he could not hear the walking from where he' was watching on the first floor. Asked to describe certain men and' women he uses such expressions as "The man was tall, slim built, a heavy man," "She was very tall, heavy built lady." "She was a tall, heavy, built lady." "Stayed there a pretty good while, it wasn't so very long either." Descriptions that fit anybody or any sort of time.

Talk about breaking down Jim Conley. If you mean by that to "make him confess," why you' can't break- down one unscrupulous Negro in fifty. It is a matter of physical endurance. He'll stand and lie as long as you can stand and ask questions. I would rather "break down" five white men with a conscience than one Negro that has no conscience. I have sworn hundreds of them. I would sooner try to “break down" five white men than two" Indians and I have worked among five tribes of Indians. You can hem a Negro, you can trip him up and throw him, but by the time you have another question ready he's on foot again with another mouth full of lies.  You can hem an old "tubby" Indian, but the minute he sees you have him hemmed he stops, gives a big guttural grunt and goes no further. Like a balky mule yon must take him out of that harness, turn his head in another direction, and then another grunt and another, balk. Jim not only contradicts himself repeatedly, but he contradicts conditions by stating things that could not exist in such surroundings.

That jury at, the trial not only had such stuff as the above to contend with and try to solve, butt they had that hair splitting, as to car time-the schedules. That stuff took up hours and hours, of time, and several pages to record. Numerous slightly conflicting statements that, split minutes, into halves, quarters and even seconds. If, the jury could have had it all before them in print they, could have figured it out easily.  Not so as it was. There was about enough of that stuff to fill an ordinary man's head. The prosecution destroyed rather than established their theory when you see it all.

Then came that "expert" medical testimony. Any jury would need to empty their heads of Conley's contradictions and car time conflictions, to take on that overdose of medical technicalities. These doses would require some 11wenty (20) large quarto pages of print to hold them, aside from the questions. The entire course required several days of treatment or administration at least one of the experts was, so far as that jury was concerned, like the old Irish doctor that we called in to see a patient. He told the patient he could not treat him for that trouble, but could give him something that would throw him into fits, and he was "hell on fits." The jury got the first dose all right.

Some statements made to the effect that the cabbage had only been in the stomach three-fourths of an hour prior to death is not scientific sense. That is only trashy theory-simple sophistry. They may have been there one hour or even three hours. Anyway, that cuts no figure except to take up time, becloud the evidence, and befuddle the minds of the jury. Yet any man 30 years old or any mother with half grown children knows that, cabbage or beans may remain in the stomach from four to eight hours, pass, on through the bowels and out of the system in from 12 to 16 hours, apparently as "whole and sound" as when they left the mouth on their way to the stomach. Various causes, excitement alone, may retard or entirely suspend digestion.

Now as to that epithelium theory. This epithelium is only a very thin outer part of the mucous membrane. It is thinner than the thinnest paper and always tender and moist. It corresponds to the epidermis or outer part of the skin on the outside of the body. It is easily abraded or torn. Being thin, tender and moist, it would decompose or decay sooner than the outer skin of a dry part of the body. We say of a body that "it has been dead so long that the skin slips."

Our methods of embalming check but do not prevent slight decay like the Egyptian, methods did.

The body was not mutilated and there was no real evidence of criminal assault. Best evidence and only safe evidence in a case like this did not exist, and that was stilted by both physicians that examined the body.  The blood on the underclothing was due to a natural periodical flow.  The murderer may have had other assault in view, but changed his mind on seeing conditions. Her underclothing was torn, evidently for the purpose of getting rags to gag and strangle her with. Then the cord was tied tight around her neck. This cord finished the work. The basement has only ground, or dirt, for a floor. Almost from the foot of the ladder back to the engine is covered with the dirt, slack from the coal used, and a great quantity of cinders-rough and sharp. The officers found her on the saw dust or shavings pile much beyond the cinders and dirtiest part of the basement. They could only tell she was white by her hair and by pulling up her clothes to the knee. Her hands face all very black from the dirt and cinders. Cinders were pressed under her finger nails, showing she had clawed the ground in her struggles. The cinders had cut into her face. "Her face was punctured, full of holes." The body was lying with the head towards the ladder and about 130 feet from the foot of that ladder and about 40 feet from the back end of the basement. She had evidently been dragged face down and evidently by the feet-part of the way, anyhow. Parasol, shoe and hat found, but some ribbon she wore' and mesh-bag and money never found. There is not a shadow of doubt that she was murdered in this basement on this dirty floor. The back door had been forced open by drawing the staple. This door opened out on an alley back of the building. There is every reason for believing that the murderer went out that door. There is no such dirt or cinders anywhere on the second floor, or elsewhere in the building. The place where Jim says he found the body is about as clean as any place in the metal room. Where he says he dropped the body by the dressing room is greasy, dirty, from paints, oils and the general factory floor dirt; but no cinders or such dirt as that on the body and clothing-and cut or pressed into her face and under the finger nails. That sort of dirt is only in the basement, and that mainly from the foot of ladder back to the engine. She was evidently dragged over this very part of the basement floor.

Jim says he carried the body from the elevator to the saw dust pile on his shoulder. That don't "fit in." That body was actually dragged some distance.

One private detective told me in an argument that Jim Conley could not have knocked that girl down and Frank not know it. Says, "Why, it wasn't farther than to that door there"-pointing to a door not 12 feet away. From the office door back to the top of stairway is 60 feet, and then 28 feet down the stairs. Frank's office overlooks the street and is on second floor. Jim was on first, and nearly on a level with the street. The street noise was considerable. Anybody of the strength of Conley could have gone in from the street, concealed himself as Jim was in 4 feet of stairs and in 4 feet of the scuttle hole, and could have knocked Mary down that hole, gagged her with pieces of her clothing, tied the string around her neck, dragged her back to saw dust pile, prized out that staple and passed out, all inside of four minutes. To write the notes would have taken more time with Jim, likely, than some others. If she had screamed at all she would have been heard out on the street easier than up at the office. Unless the cry was very loud it could not have been heard for the street noise; and the scream would as likely-or more so-been down in the basement when she had been tumbled down the ladder. The gash in the head was most likely cut .as she struck the chop block at the foot of the ladder.  I have tested these noises there and studied distances and conditions generally; and believe it possible, and easily so, for a man to stand where Jim was and do all that. was done in this case in five minutes; and a man, or ten men or women, in the office know nothing of it. Unless some one came in just at the moment to catch him, he could repeat the operation every ten minutes for an hour and no one in the office have the least suspicion of what was going on below. I think there is no doubt of that if the girls came down at regular intervals of eight or ten minutes.

Now taking the notes found by the body and applying them to conditions, I think the matter is solved easily. That so-called blood stain and the hair found on the lathe on second floor seems to me too flimsy for consideration when the notes· are properly examined. Besides the hair was not that of Mary. I had bad some experience in running down criminals, had worked some with post office inspectors and detectives. I had never but once heard that there was a pencil factory in Atlanta, and did not know where it was. Did not know a single party connected with it in any way, did not know a detective on the investigation. I did know from much observation that even detectives could· be misled in different ways. They sometimes get started wrong and will follow a weak scent, and a cold trail, a long time before they will give it up. None of us are too ready to admit that we are wrong in a matter of theory or opinion. The chief of detectives and a lawyer in Atlanta disagreed over the method of investigating the mystery. They said some nasty things about each other through the papers and "got indicted" for libel. I did not, and do not till yet, know either one of them. Not being able to dispute what either one said, I decided to "believe all they both said," and to pursue my own course. I have not been paid or offered money or other thing of value 'by either side or any other party, whether Jew or Gentile. I expe0t to put a price on this pamphlet, and such as buy it" will be helping to defray the expense of publishing. That is all I expect out of it. Aside from that there is no pe0uniary consideration and any person who says there is, is a liar.

Before going further on the theory that she was "pushed" down the ladder way and killed in the basement, let us look at the doubtfulness of its being otherwise. If she had gone back to the toilet in the back part of the metal room she had no business to be anywhere near the lathe where the hair was found "wrapped around" the crank handle. If she had been attacked at the toilet, why should the body be found by Jim several steps to the north of that?  If she had gone straight back to the window, why was her body found 18 feet to the left of that? If Frank had enticed her back there, why would he go right to the stairway up to the third floor, where he was in open view, and where White and Denham might come up on him any moment? There were many much more retired places nearby that he could as easily have led her to. There was no blood at the toilet, lathe, or where the body was found. Jim puts in several minutes from the time he says she was knocked down and her head hit "something" until he was aroused from his slumbers near the foot of stairway on the lower floor. He puts it 15 or 20 minutes at the least from the time she went up. Then he goes up, gets the cloth to tie her up in. There was no blood there where he says he found her, none at other places and none found on Sunday by the detectives-none anywhere there. Monday the spots are found at the place where he says he dropped her more than 20 minutes after the blood would have stained the floor where he says he found the body. The wound fresh would have bled more freely than 20 minutes later. These spots were not covered up by the haskolin.  That white, powdery stuff was put around about the spots, not over them. It was not an effort to cover them up; but an effort to make somebody believe that some one had tried to cover them up and had partly failed. If they had been completely covered they might of course not be noticed -hence the putting "around about." Frank, or even Jim Conley, would have made a complete job of that. The young man who put that "plant" up on the boys might tell it, but it would be shouted all over the county that "the Jews have bought him," and then the detectives might get after him. He did not mean any harm by it.

Now to the notes. One reads: "Mam that negro hire down here did this I went to make water and he push me down that hole a long tall negro black that hoo it was long sleam tall negro I wright while play with me."

The other note reads: "he said he wood love me land down play like the night witch did it but that long tall black Negro did by his self."

The first note was written on yellow paper and the other white paper. The writing is bad. He brings the bottom of the stem of the letter h down below the line like he does the bottom of the letter p. That word may be either "hire" or "fire" most likely hire. Anyway, it is intended evidently to describe the Negro fireman, Nolley, who fired the engine in the basement. That Negro ·is a tall, slim, black Negro. Newt Lee is also slim and tall and black. The word witch was thought at first to mean watch. Mr. Alexander thinks it an allusion to some Negro superstition and means what it says, a "night witch." Anyway, the words "hire down here" or "fire down here," show that the notes were written in the basement and that .Jim, the acknowledged author of the notes, meant to lay the crime on the fireman.

There is no assumption or theory ill connection with this whole case that is more plausible or reasonable than the theory that Jim in these notes stated the facts as to how the crime was committed.

My first thought was that he snatched her purse as she came down to the foot of the stairs. She resisted and he knocked her down and then tumbled her down the scuttle hole. He probably states all correctly except describing the murderer. Jim is a low, stout, heavy-built 'negro, and a light ginger cake color. Nolly, who was "hire down here," is slim and black. He needed to emphasize that description and he does it. He says "negro hire down here "-that is, in the basement and hot hired up on the fourth floor, where Jim did the most of his work as roustabout and sweeper.” A long, tall, Negro, black, that who it was, long, sleam, tall Negro." Mary went up to the office, get her pay and, did not tarry. She did not go back from the bead of the stairs 100 feet to the west and then 40 feet to the south to the ladies' toilet; but turned down the stairs, and in that dark hallway at foot of the stairs she turned to her left about 8 feet to that scuttle hole, in haste before starting for the street to see the parade and be on the streets several hours. Jim was in the boxes about 4 feet to her left as she passed from stairs to the scuttle hole. Jim's note tells the rest. Her knee and elbow, and probably forehead near the eyes, were bruised in her fall down the ladder, her head struck the chop block and that gash was cut in the head. She tumbled from the block before the blood could run out to stain it. In tearing at her underskirt for cloth to gag her with he caught one leg of the drawers and tore that open. He may have had no other object but purse snatching. If he had any other he desisted for the reason stated before. He took her money and purse, or hand bag, the little ribbon also; and wrote the notes" down here" as he says.

Jim was not known to the foremen or Mr. Darley or Prank as a very bad Negro. He borrowed money from many of the white people and would not pay them. He swears he owed many and when pay day came he sometimes go1i another Negro to get his pay envelope and slip it to him outside to keep from paying his debts. When he got it himself he says he slipped down stairs and down that scuttle hole and out at the back basement door. He drank and smoked and kept a woman that was no this wife.  His employers could not know his habits outside of his work there. The story he tells of watching for Frank on that Thanksgiving Day is all false. There were from two to five parties there all the time and one went with him at noon to help him carry some bundles to the car on which he left for his work at the orphans' home, where he was on a committee to arrange for a party that evening. These parties know Jim lies, there. Jim swears the lady that came to the office to Frank on Thanksgiving Day had on white slippers and white stockings. That don't "fit in," as the snow was two inches deep and a raw, mean wind besides. If he had been on watch the other times he tells of some of the Wooden Ware Company or other visitors would most certainly have caught him. Frank could never have taken such a risk there in .a business for the success of which he was' partly responsible. His good judgment would 'have prompted him to seek a room, elsewhere for such conduct if he had wanted to so pervert himself.

The letters written to the Negro woman, Annie Maud Carter, by Jim, show where the moral pervert is. I have read them.  They contain the most exaggerated and vulgar expressions that can be written or spoken. Beastly lust and perversion shown all through them. No more vulgar words ever heard in the dirtiest back alley in Atlanta or any other .city. He spells them out in full. His whole head seems to be filled with thoughts of beastly lust, and he don't mince matters in stating his thoughts. He does not deny them. They were written after he was jailed. That was after the trial of Frank and of course after the solicitor and detectives were set in their way. At least two of the officers working the case against Frank, believing Jim and not Frank, the guilty party, abandoned the case and refused to proceed further in getting up the slanderous statements that have been used against Frank.

An editor of a vulgar paper says that the fact that Frank failed to call Mary Phagan's name in some of his letters to the papers and that he "shuddered" and "shrank" at the sight of the corpse at the undertaker's, has a "psychological significance. " Jim Conley worked at the factory two years; so did Mary Phagan. Jim was porter and sweeper. He borrowed money from the girls and never paid it back. He knew more names there, five to one, than Frank did. In his talk he knew Mary Phagan until he goes on the stand at the trial. There he uses this exact language: "The next person that I saw was Miss Mary Perkins, that's what I call her, this lady that's dead, I don't know her name." Will this great Psychologist apply a little of his science to the death notes, the several long letters to the Carter woman, and to the pretension of ignorance as to Mary's name?

There are certain racial, and even national, characteristics.  The American uses his pistol, the Malay his bolo, the Irishman his shelala, the Italian his stiletto and the Negro his razor. I have studied the psychological and racial features in this case, and am now convinced that the whole crime was purely that of a Negro and a Negro alone. By studying the death notes in connection with the lustful and vulgar notes to the Carter woman it is clear that the death notes were framed solely by Jim-that no white man dictated or even made the slightest suggestion in the writing or framing of the death notes. They are of purely Negro conception.

We should not take as truth every report made in the papers. We should not take as truth the statements of silly boys and girls made in answer to leading questions-deceiving, misleading questions-and the answers made when the parties were off their guard, "just a talking." Such testimony is not only exparte, but is half "frame up.”. But the signature is appended, the oath is taken and the witness is caught. Thus entrapped, the witnesses are told 'by malicious persons, as well as friends and officers, that when they go into court they must ~wear the same things or they will be sent to the pen for perjury.

In a civil case, with only a few dollars at stake, if the testimony is needed of a witness who is not easily gotten into court, interrogatories are taken. One side asks questions and the other "crosses" them by asking questions, all reduced to writing and in form provided by law. The clerk issues a commission to disinterested parties with authority to administer the oath and reduce the answers to all questions of both sides, -to writing. Depositions can not be taken in a criminal case. In a case involving life or liberty, no matter how little the liberty that may be at stake, the witness’s must face the accused in court. The witness must stand so the jury can see him as well as hear him, that they may be the better able to judge of his competency and reliability. There before that jury in open court that witness can be questioned by both sides and allf3lcts brought out, not just one side. Even in the grand jury room where there are 23 disinterested men the witness can be cross-questioned by any member of the .grand jury. While that is an ex parte examination, the jury simply looking for evidence sufficient to authorize them to send the party into court for trial, it may disclose that the witness when properly examined is incompetent. Many such witnesses are turned down 'by the grand jury, and their names are not even placed on the list of witnesses expected to testify, in the trial court.

But, when the detectives, Tom, Dick and Harry, take the affidavit it is purely a one-sided affair; not made in open court with cross examination in presence of judge and jury. He may be "just a talking," or it may be a clear" frame up," yet he must stick to it or he is to go to the pen for perjury. Most of the evidence put up in this case against Frank was of that nature. Some of it was absolutely false; premeditated, willful and malicious.

Much evidence was put in by institution and intimation. Many things were "hinted at by the prosecution, that had no foundation, in fact-put in to influence the jury-and much of it was a play to the galleries." The crowds in the court house relished it and applauded. The reporter sent it in to the papers and they sent it out to the public. The solicitor asked an office boy who had sworn that he had seen no wrong conduct on the part of Frank, some very insinuating questions. He said he was there many Saturdays all day as messenger boy; had seen no women, beer or soft drinks there. That he had never seen Dalton or others there-that he had seen nothing to indicate immorality or depravity on the part of Frank. The solicitor asked him pointedly if Frank had not made "improper advances" to him. The boy said "No." Asked him if he had not told Gantt so. Answer" No.” Then, “Do you deny that you told Gantt that Frank had threatened to discharge you if you did not comply with his wishes?” The boy did deny it, and Dorsey asked again, "Didn't you 'tell him twice?" "No," came from the boy. The solicitor, as reported, threatened to bring in Gantt to prove the boy had told Gantt so. The jury was sent out then while the lawyers argued the admissibility of such testimony. That gave the jury time to become impressed with that intimation of dirty acts on the part of Frank although the solicitor never brought in Gantt, and Gantt would not have sworn it if he had been brought in. That stuff not only stuck with the jury, but the papers of August 12 published it, and it went from mouth to mouth gaining credence as it went. Dorsey had failed in many prosecutions; he was "making good" now.

To strengthen such false reports it was being told that Frank had killed his wife in New York. That he had a dozen babies around Atlanta and was supporting two and their mothers in East Point right then. One was that his wife knew he was a pervert and had already filed, suit for divorce when Mary Phagan was killed. One traveling man who was going from town to town and store to store regaling people with his knowledge of the matter, said he knew Frank was a moral pervert from his looks. He then told that divorce suit story.  When I told him I had made the acquaintance of his wife her people and investigated as to facts, he blurted out, “Go to the court house and see the records." I told him there were no such records and that was only one of many such stories being circulated maliciously.

To counterfeit is a crime; to circulate a counterfeit is a crime. To forge is a crime; to circulate a forgery is a crime. To forge a paper is a felony; to utter a forgery is a felony, and the penalty is the same as for forgery.

To start a slander is sinful; and to circulate it after it is started is just as bad.

Many witnesses for the state were asked what they knew of Frank's character for lasciviousness?  Their answer was that it "was bad." Not one in ten of such witnesses knows what the word lasciviousness means. Many of them have so stated since; and also stated that they had never heard, a word against Frank until after he was arrested and that their ideas of him were entirely formed from reports circulated after the arrest.

All sorts of reports-false, slanderous-were put in circulation. He had killed his wife in New York. This wife in Atlanta had already brought suit for divorce on the ground that he was mean. That he had often gone out street cat lines with young girls pulling them off the cars in spite of their crying and resistance-many on the cars besides the motorman and conductor seeing his acts. That, a girl in a red dress went with Mary for her pay; that Frank sent her away, telling her that Mary had work to do and could not go then; that he telephoned to a house of questionable character for a room for him and a girl; that he bad given Newt Lee a check for $300 to burn the body in the furnace that night. To create further prejudice it was said he was clearly guilty, but would never hang. That he was a Mason and the Masons were all for him; he was a Catholic and they were all for him; that he was a Jew and the Jews were all for him. Inconsistent, rot! It was said the Jews had made up $50,000 to buy the court and jury. People with sense enough to know these reports were false went on spreading them for the purpose of deceiving some one they thought silly enough to 'believe them. Slanders floated upon every breeze. Ashes thrown to the four winds that could never be gathered up again.

The report that his wife would not go to see him because she" knew he was guilty" was spread. The statement that he had employed a lawyer to defend him before he was arrested was another story to create feeling against Frank.

Frank was taken from his home at 7 o'clock Monday morning. They were grilling him there when Schiff, his assistant at the factory, learned of it. He went in person and notified the general superintendent of Frank's arrest and detention at police headquarters. The general superintendent telephoned Herbert Haas, the attorney for the pencil company, and a stock holder in the company, to go and see about it. Haas got there about 9:30 A.M. Haas was likely to be needed with his family at home and he called in Col. L.Z. Rosser. Rosser got to police headquarters about 11 A. M. and for a while was refused admittance by the police and was not admitted to the room where Frank was being grilled until after some hot words with the chief of police-Frank in a closed room knowing nothing of the employment of a lawyer for his defense.

Frank's wife did not know he was under arrest. He was released at noon, 12:15 o'clock, and allowed to go home. The next day, Tuesday, April 29th, 1913, he was re-arrested at the pencil factory shortly after noon and taken to the police headquarters again. As soon as his wife, heard of it she went to police headquarters. See the following from column two, page two, of the Atlanta Constitution of Wednesday, April 30th, 1913:

FRANK'S WIFE ARRIVES.

"While her husband was being sweated by the detectives, the beautiful young wife of the factory president, tearful and anxious, came to police headquarters. She was accompanied by friends. Denied admission to the floor on which her husband sat, she was led, weeping bitterly, into the probation officer's room." Then is added, "Frank was not aware of her "presence at police station."

Frank's father-in-law, Emil Selig, set to work then and there to get an extra to guard him that night to prevent his being locked up. Frank was locked up a while and then a guard was put over him in the detectives' office, showing the result of Mr. Selig's efforts.

The statement by two girls that they saw Frank and a forelady go into the dressing room during working hours and stay 15 or 20 minutes is disputed by more than a score of witnesses; clean, respectable ladies, some girls, some mature ladies,50 or more years old. This is not what is called negative testimony; it is positive. If that occurred several others would have known it. Her mother and grown sister were there with her; they went and came together. Such other charges against Frank are as absurd and as fully contradicted by competent, reliable and truthful witnesses.

The grand jury indicted Frank May 24 and Lee was held as a witness in the county jail.  Conley was taken from police headquarters to the county jail on May 30, 1913, where he was kept two weeks, when, on the request of Dorsey, the court, Judge Roan, granted an order allowing Conley to betaken back to the city police headquarters where he was in the hands of detectives. Frank's trial was set for June 30 was later changed by consent to July 28. On July 21 the grand jury' wanted to indict Jim Conley but Dorsey persuaded them to postpone it. A venire of 144 men was summoned from which to select the jury. I was told then that the names of these men should never have made known as the Jews and Rosser and Arnold would see them and buy them up. When the trial came on and the jurors were examined in the usual way, one man, that I know and think strictly straight and honest, answered all questions satisfactorily-qualifying-when Dorsey asked, "Have you not said that it would take evidence to make you-believe Frank guilty?" He said, "Yes, I said that." He then explained that he had not wanted to be, fixed by gossip and newspaper reports. He wanted to keep his mind clear and watch later developments. Dorsey asked the judge to send him out "for cause," and out he went. Did Dorsey want a jury that would convict a man of murder without evidence? The newspapers said that Dorsey had every man spotted by the detectives and knew how they stood. It would have ruined the defense to have approached a single juror on the matter. They had to stand off from such conduct. The detectives could simply listen and report to Dorsey.

Jim Conley was kept by the detectives until the trial. When Dorsey called his name, the papers stated, the women and girls clapped their hands in the court house. The chief of police took Jim to the court in his private automobile after he had been bathed, shaved and a new suit of clothes put on him to give him a nice appearance before the jury. Dorsey stated loudly and publicly that Conley should never be indicted for murder while he, Dorsey, was solicitor. He was not. Jim was tried and sentenced to the chain gang for one year. His lawyer took an appeal, claiming Jim should have had the privilege of paying a fine. That put him in the hands of his lawyer; and only lawyer Smith and Dorsey and two detectives who had been on the case were allowed to see Jim except in the presence of Smith. Long after this Jim "got tired" and decided to go to the gang and work out his sentence of one year. May be Smith got tired too.

Under such conditions it is not reasonable to suppose any evidence would be worked up against Conley. It is reasonable to believe that evidence against him might even be suppressed.

Much has been said as to the evidence of Frank's guilt from the fact that he refused to confront Jim Conley at the jail when Beavers, Lanford and Scott wanted to take Jim in to "face Frank." The Constitution of the United States, of Georgia and of every state in the Union expressly declares that no one shall be required to give testimony against himself. The reasons are too plain to need discussion. The Supreme Court of Georgia long ago declared that an officer could not even require a man to set his foot in a track to see if his shoe fitted the track. Some say these men were officers and working for the facts and not particularly against Frank; that Scott was even employed by Frank. Under the Pinkerton charter the men are to work in "harmony" with the city detective. A ridiculous restriction that I will not now discuss. The city detectives under that provision simply "gobbled" up Scott. A city man was with him all the time and they were working on the theory and under the direction of the city force. That was the view of Frank and his friends. Frank only required that his lawyer should be present at the meeting. Under, the condition of things then he needed besides his lawyer as many witnesses as there were of the Conley crowd. Under such backing and protection a lying Negro like Jim could have talked "mighty big" to a white man confined in a cell in jail.  There are men in this state that would "get busy"-mighty busy-if an officer should go to the jail to grill with a Negro their son or brother. One of the best, judges Atlanta has had in years recently scored the practice, and said an officer had no right to even ask a prisoner if he was guilty. Exactly so, too.

One man, after asserting that there is no prejudice against Frank, because he is a Jew, grows eloquent and says Mary Phagan "is our folks." Well, she is my folks, too. I am as red-headed as this editor. I carry as much Scotch blood-am as much of a Clansman. I was born in a county adjoining Mary's; went to school there, studied law there, paid taxes there. I lived in another county adjoining hers for several years-paid taxes there nine or ten years. She may have been a blood relation of mine. I have hundreds of distant blood relatives from the Potomac to the Rio Grande. Can't know them all The wife of the trial judge, Mrs. Roan, is a blood relative; Hugh Dorsey, the solicitor that prosecuted Frank, is a blood relative; James Mason, the city attorney, is a blood relative of mine. Maybe they don't like it, but they can't help themselves.

My whole sympathy is with people who work at honest labor-am a strong believer in the" dignity of labor." While I have engaged in professions, several of them, I work with my hands. I do not believe the ladies who work at the pencil factory are bought by "Jew money." I believe they are as truthful, honest and virtuous as the common run of our women. Have taken some time to investigate them.

The charge that the Atlanta papers have all been bought with "Jew money" is absurd. Two evening papers had editorials insisting Frank should have another trial. One man pours hot shot into the Journal and discuses that paper of trying to dictate to the Supreme Court. Now he is trying to bully the governor and pardoning board in advance of any action they may take. The Journal editorial of March 10, 1914, was the embodiment of good sense and reason. The Journal said that to hang Frank on such evidence would be "judicial murder." If I understand that term, I would not say "judicial."

Strong sentiment, based on false reports, violent passion, due to the awfulness of the crime, might force the courts and officers to carry out the wish of the many, but the act would not be quite "judicial" The Journal stated facts as I saw them, and I was on the watch three days of that week, including the Saturday when the court adjourned on account of the excited crowd around the court building. I heard men say that the jury ought to know how the public stood-that the people were always right. I argued that we had the loose, false reports controlling outside and that many of the stories they called evidence had been exploded-but they were still on the minds of the people.

It is a great mistake to believe the majority is always right. It depends on how the belief is induced. The minority is as apt to be right as the majority and this is especially so where much intelligence and cool judgment is required to form an opinion. The so-called" conscience of the public" may not always be right. It is not always safe to run off after the many. Christ says, "Wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because straight is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." Sometimes it may be better to be with the few than with the many.

Allowing that the jury was neither consciously or unconsciously biased, in the case they had more evidence to consider than they were capable of retaining considering fully. The average juror has not the memory a mind trained in thinking sufficient to handle that mass of evidence. If they had all the facts, the real admissible evidence, arranged systematically and printed, and then give them several days to read and consider it, they might arrive at a correct verdict. Under our system they can not even make memorandum. They must carry it all in their heads-in such a case as this is a matter of impossibility. Judge Roan, better trained in eliminating the trashy, and retaining and weighing the real evidence, expressed doubt as to Frank's guilt. He has been censured by some for expressing his opinion as against that of the jury, and by others for not setting aside the verdict and granting a new trial. I ask what good would a new trial have done if held under the same surroundings as the first?

We are told that the jury did not know of the strong feeling and of threats being made while the trial was on. They could not have known of the threats, but any man could tell from continual demonstrations that the feeling outside was intense. Judge Roan, it is said, got scores of threatening letters. The jury of course did not get such, because they were under guard; but it was said they "kept up with the baseball news." There was much talk that if the jury came in with a verdict of "not guilty," that Frank and the jury would be lynched, and most likely the judge and Rosser and Arnold, Frank's attorneys. Then under Such conditions was it not better to return a verdict of guilty than to have such a thing attempted and scores of men killed in the fight to stand it off?  That is a matter for everyone's consideration.

One lawyer-editor tells us that the Supreme Court reviewed all the evidence and passed on it. "And the court did say that the evidence was sufficient to sustain the verdict," is his language. That editor has not kept up with the wonderful growth of our wonderful constitution. That court does not really pass on the evidence, or facts, but only on the right to put certain sorts of evidence before the jury. In commenting on the evidence of a certain witness in this case, the majority of the court, four justices, say they are dealing with the "admissibility" of the evidence and not with its "credibility." They add "that was passed upon by the jury." Two justices dissent, stating that the evidence was not admissible. Without authority from Frank or anyone else, I will venture the assertion that Frank would be greatly gratified to have the Supreme Court take all the law and evidence, pass on the credibility of all witnesses, and render a verdict accordingly.

The work done by Frank that day, his whereabouts for most of the time is proven beyond any reasonable doubt, his good character as proven by scores competent witnesses, should not be considered. No one could have made a better showing.  We must consider the motive that prompted most of the witnesses for the prosecution and the manner in which their was taken.

To couple the names of innocent girls and women with the conduct charged to Frank is an awful thing. The mere statement of two girls that they saw Frank go into a during work hours with a. forelady and stay 15 or 20 minutes, and that they saw it two or three times is not sufficient to base a slanderous report on. The object in putting that sort of testimony in was to intimate, of course, that they were for immoral purposes. The girls do not state that was the object of the parties going into the room. Their statement that they even saw Frank and the lady go in there is disputed by more than a score of witnesses of unimpeachable character, witnesses who could and would have seen it, had it occurred.

To circulate such a report and give it coloring is a vile slander. To publish, print such stuff, giving it the appearance of truth, is malicious libel, and indictable offense.  One weekly paper in this state says, "the pervert who had been shameless as to c---- in the factory in broad day-time with Miss -----." Frank is the pervert alluded to and discussion now his name can be called; but to connect the name of a young lady considered by good, truthful acquaintances be above reproach is not only criminal libel-it is damnable.

Has the time come when girls and women who work for an honest living are to be thus slandered? Half the lady stenographers, typewriters, bookkeepers are alone at times in the offices with a man. So with clerks and factory employees.  It is time that slanders in this case should cease and we should get down to reason and truthfulness. Without that there can be no haven of rest for us when we have sailed stormy seas of this life and landed on the other shore.

W. E. Thompson



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