Absence of Alienists and the Hypothetical Question Distinguishes Frank Trial

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 9th, 1913

By O. B. Keeler

There are two things about the Frank trial that entitle it to distinguished consideration.

Thus far not a single alienist has been called to bat, and only the common or domesticated type of the dread Hypothetical Question has appeared.

In most of our great murder trials, the alienist is the last resort, or one of the latest resorts. Usually he is introduced by the defense; anywhere from four to eight of him.

The prosecution promptly counters with an equal number of wheel inspectors.

The defense (Vide Thaw case) generally proves to its own satisfaction that the defendant was crazy when he did it, but since has recovered his equilibrium, his alibi and all the rest of his scattered personal effects.

The four to eight experts for the State differ slightly with this finding.

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Dalton’s Testimony False, Girl Named on Stand Says

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 9th, 1913

The Georgian today received from Miss Laura Atkinson of No. 30 Ella Street, one of the young women mentioned in C. B. Dalton’s testimony, a letter denying absolutely that she had ever walked home with Dalton from the restaurant near the pencil factory, as he swore. Here is Miss Atkinson’s letter in full:

Editor The Georgian:

Will you please allow me space to correct a statement made by Mr. C. B. Dalton in his testimony at the Frank trail and published in your paper yesterday? In answer to a question from Mr. Rosser as to whether he ever went to the pencil factory with any one except Miss Daisy Hopkins he said yes, he used to go to the Busy Bee and wait for the factory to close to walk home with the girls and gave my name as one of the girls.

His statement as I read it in your paper, impressed me as being intended to convey to the minds of those heard it (and of course all who read it) the idea that I was working at the factory at the time he says he went there and that he was in the habit of waling home with me. I have no desire to make any derogatory remarks about Mr. Dalton, but in justice to myself and my good name, I certainly do feel it my duty to say that his statement concerning me is false and he had not the slightest ground whatever for making it and no right to use my name in any way in his testimony.

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Rosser Swears Bludgeon Was Not In Factory Day After the Murder

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

City Detective Bass Rosser, who worked on the Phagan mystery, followed Dalton on the stand Thursday morning to tell that Mrs. Arthur White, whose husband, father and brother work for the National Pencil company, had not told him of seeing a strange negro in the factory on the day of the crime, although he questioned her about her knowledge of what went on there that day, and she had also told her brother, Wade Campbell, of seeing the negro.

“Have you worked on this case?” asked Solicitor Hugh Dorsey.

“Yes, sir,” replied the detective.

“Did you visit Mrs. Arthur White?”
“Yes.”

“Did Mrs. White mention to you anything about having seen a negro in the factory?”
“She did the second time I talked with her.”

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Will Defense Put Character of Leo Frank Before Jury?

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Will Leo Frank’s character be one of the issues in his trial for the murder of little Mary Phagan?

That is the question which has been the subject of speculation since it was first known that he would be tried for the murder, and as the case has progressed the subject has been discussed frequently.

Not one in a hundred defendants place their character in issue when on trial for murder, but a condition has arisen in the Frank case which may cause his attorneys to think it wise to take this step.

It came when James Conley, the negro who accuses Frank of the murder, testified to misconduct on the part of the defendant which would brand him as an outcast among men, and when C. B. Dalton, the white man, mentioned by the negro, testified to having visited the factory for immoral purposes with Frank’s knowledge and to have seen him drinking beer with women in his office.

Defense Lose Point.

The defense, after letting the testimony of the negro stand until they had cross-examined him upon it, moved to strike it from the record and only lost after a hot argument on both sides.

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Harris Sticks to Testimony As to Time of Girl’s Death

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Dr. H.F. Harris, the state’s final witness against Leo M. Frank, was put on the stand for cross examination shortly after 10 o’clock Thursday morning, and through a series of questions Attorney Reuben Arnold, for the defense, sought to make him less definite in regard to the time of Mary Phagan’s death after eating the meal of cabbage and bread about 11:30 on the day she was killed.

Dr. Harris was asked a number of questions about digestion, and while he admitted it to be a subject that is not thoroughly understood by scientists, he clung to the main portion of his original testimony that the girl must have been killed within a hour after she ate her meal.

“Tell of some things that might retard indigestion, Dr. Harris,” Mr. Arnold started out.

“Well, it is hard to tell about that,” replied the physician, “there are some nervous troubles which have that effect and then certain things put into the stomach have that same effect. The subject is not too well known and it’s necessarily rather vague.”

“As a general proposition, any sort of physical or mental activity would retard digestion, wouldn’t it?”

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Dr. Frank Eskridge Aiding Prosecution

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Dr. R. T. Dorsey Also Comes to Assistance of Solicitor in the Frank Case

Dr. Frank L. Eskridge, a well-known physician, is assisting Solicitor General Dorsey in the solicitor’s examination of expert chemists and medical men and in cross-examinations of experts presented by the defense.

Dr. Eskridge is widely versed in various branches of medicine, chemistry and surgery, and has proved an invaluable aid to the solicitor, especially in the examination of Dr. Roy Harris.

In the cross-examination of Dr. Leroy Childs, in the afternoon session Thursday, the solicitor was valuably assisted by his brother, Dr. R. T. Dorsey, a prominent figure in local medical circles. Dr. Dorsey’s assistance proved decisively effective in rebutting the expert’s testimony.

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Atlanta Constitution, August 8th 1913, “Dr. Frank Eskridge Aiding Prosecution,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Defense May Call for Character Witnesses Today

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

C. B. DALTON TELLS ABOUT VISITS HE PAID THE PENCIL FACTORY WITH MANY WOMEN

Declares He Used Basement for Immoral Purposes at Same Time That Frank Was in Building, But Did Not Attempt to Say What the Superintendent’s Relations With Women Were—Declares Conley Acted as Lookout for Him.

DR. LEROY W. CHILDS CALLED BY DEFENSE TO REFUTE DR. HARRIS

Harry Scott Is Also Put on Stand by Defense to Prove That Conley Lied on Many Occasions—Detective Was on the Stand When Court Adjourned for Day—Cross-Examination Fails to Shake Dr. Harris.

Shortly after Dr. H. F. Harris had completed his testimony for the state and was cross-examined in detail by Reuben Arnold, the state rested its case against Leo M. Frank.

Solicitor Dorsey had called for Frank’s bank book to show that he had in his possession approximately $200—the sum Jim Conley says he gave him and then took back—but the book was not produced, and the state rested. Later the solicitor may introduce other witnesses, but not until after the defense has closed.

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Scott Called by Defense To Refute Conley’s Story

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

SHOWS NEGRO LIED MANY TIMES

The defense sprang a surprise during the afternoon session whey they called Detective Harry Scott to the stand to testify to the third-degree under which Jim Conley had been placed at police headquarters and which process had exacted his three conflicting confessions.

Scott stated throughout his testimony that Conley had told conflicting stories on numerous occasions during his early imprisonment, and that had failed to tell the detectives much of the story which he related on the witness stand Tuesday and Wednesday.

Scott’s statement created a telling of fact and it is said to have caused the wavering of opinion of the negro’s story. According to the detective’s testimony Conley’s story from past records showed itself to be an unfathomably mess of fabrications.

The Pinkerton man was not removed from the stand until the adjournment of the afternoon session.

He was questioned by Luther Rosser.

“You had information on Monday following the murder that Mrs. Arthur White had seen a negro loitering on the first floor, didn’t you? Did you give it to the police?”

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Dr. Childs Differs with Harris As to Processes of Digestion

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

Following Dr. H. F. Harris, the final witness of the state, DR. L. W. Childs also an expert on matters pertaining to the various processes of digestion was placed on the stand by the defense to refute what Dr. Harris had said about the food in Mary Phagan’s stomach showing that she had been killed in about half an hour after she ate.

Dr. Childs took a decidedly opposite stand from that of his brother physician and declared that he would hazard no guess within two hours of the time that death occurred after eating and also after looking at the sample of cabbage taken from the girl’s stomach stated that he had seen cabbage look that way after it had remained in a person’s stomach for 12 hours.

After ascertaining for the benefit of the jury that Dr. Childs graduated in 1906 from the medical college of the University of Michigan and that his occupation was that of surgery and general medicine Mr. Arnold propounded a number of hypothetical questions.

“If a person dies and the body is found at 3 o’clock in the morning when rigor mortis has set in to a certain extent: said the attorney “and the body is then embalmed at 10 o’clock that day and later disinterred nine days after and a physician finds a wound in the back of head say about 2 inches long and cut through to the skull with perhaps a drop of blood on the skull but with no pressure on the brain and injury to the skull could that physician determine whether or not that a would had caused unconsciousness before death?”

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Defense Begins Introduction of Evidence

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Journal
August 8th, 1913

Afternoon Session of Frank’s Trial Thursday Is Without Any Interesting Development

Pinkerton Detective Harry Scott Testifies That Conley Never Told Him New Features of Story—Dr. Leroy Childs Testifies in Effort to Break Dr. Harris’ Story

When court adjourned Thursday afternoon at 5:10 o’clock Detective Scott, called by the defense to impeach Jim Conley, had just concluded his examination by the solicitor. Scott had been put through a long series of questions by Attorney Rosser, the purpose of which was to show the discrepancies between what Conley told Scott and what he swore on the witness stand.

Harry Scott, of the Pinkertons, was called as the second witness for the defense of Leo M. Frank Thursday afternoon when Dr. Leroy Childs left the stand. Scott testified that he informed the detectives immediately upon learning that Mrs. White had seen a negro sitting on a box at the foot of the second floor stairs. The state has contended that this information was withheld from the city detectives until May 7 or 8, and that Scott learned it from Frank on April 28.

Dr. Childs while under the examination of Attorney Arnold characterized testimony similar to some of that given by Drs. Hurt and Harris as remarkable guess work. When the wound on Mary Phagan’s head was described to the physician by Attorney Arnold, Dr. Childs declared that it would be guess work to say that the wound would have caused unconsciousness; when the wound was described to him by Solicitor Dorsey he declared that it would not have caused death. He declared that the conditions upon which Dr. Harris based his opinion that violence had been done the girl, might have been caused by the examination made by Dr. Hurt prior to Dr. Harris’ examination and by the process of embalming.

At 2 o’clock the trial resumed, with Dr. L. W. Childs still on the stand under direct examination by Attorney Arnold.

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Dorsey Forces Childs to Admit Certain Portions of His Testimony Could Not Be Considered Expert

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8, 1913

Dr. LeRoy W. Childs who was the first witness placed on the stand by the defense underwent a rigorous cross examination by Solicitor Dorsey.

The solicitor showed a keen knowledge of medicine and chemistry in the volley of questions he fired at the medical expert, and, upon one occasion elicited the admission from the witness that he was not informed of a certain phase of laboratory work on which great stress had been laid by Dr. Roy Harris who preceded Dr. Childs to the stand.

In concluding his testimony Dr. Childs when asked by the solicitor who explained the condition in which Mary Phagan’s body had been discovered declared that it was his opinion death did not result from the blow upon the head.

Dr. Childs was on the stand at the opening of the afternoon session under direct examination of Attorney Arnold.

“State whether or not doctor a bruise upon an eye can be inflicted after death?”

“Such a bruise could be produced before the body is cold. Some bodies retain heat longer than others.”

“Can a blow on the back of the head cause a black eye?”

“Such a blow could blacken both eyes.”

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Defense Attacks State’s Case From Many Angles

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Journal
August 8th, 1913

MOTORMAN AND CONDUCTOR SAY NEWSBOY EPPS WAS NOT ON CAR THAT BROUGHT MARY TO CITY

They Swear That She Left Car at Broad and Hunter Streets at 12:10, the Very Hour Monteen Stover Claims to Have Left Factory—Daisy Hopkins Swears She Never Visited Factory With Dalton and That She Did Not Know Frank

NEW THEORY OF HOW CRIME MIGHT HAVE BEEN COMMITTED INTIMATED BY ENGINEER’S TESTIMONY

Albert Kauffman Describes Passageway on First Floor Leading to Chute, Through Which He Declares Human Body Could Easily Have Passed—Spots, Said to Be Blood, Found in Passageway

A new theory of the Mary Phagan murder was hinted at by the defense at the trial of Leo M. Frank Friday while Albert Kauffman, a civil engineer, was under examination. From questions asked by Attorney Arnold, Mr. Kauffman testified that there was a chute in the rear of the National Pencil factory building leading from the first floor down into the basement and that the trap door to this chute was large enough to slide a human body through, in fact, he said it was large enough to slide several bodies through at the same moment.

He told of a dark and narrow hallway leading from the front of the building by the stairway back to the rear by the trap door. Many questions were asked concerning this hallway and chute and trial observers believe that the defense is preparing a way for introduction of other testimony possibly bearing out the theory that the child was murdered just as she went to leave the building, was dragged back along this dark hallway and dropped through the chute into the basement. Questions were asked the engineer about a vat in the metal room. He declared that it was plenty large enough to hold the body of a girl who measured five feet and three inches tall.

BLOOD IN DARK PASSAGEWAY?

It is known that the defense had found dark red spots, presumed to be blood, on a door leading to the dark passageway, which goes to the rear of the building and to the chute, to which so much attention was paid by the attorneys. The dark spots on the door have been chipped off and an analysis, the result of which is not known, has been made for the defense.

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Dalton Corroborates Statements Contained in Conley’s Testimony

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 8th, 1913

C.B. Dalton a railroad carpenter who was heralded as one of the star witnesses for the defense was called to the stand by Solicitor Dorsey whe[n] court convened Thursday morning. The most startling statement uttered by Dalton from the stand was that he used the basement of the National Pencil company factory for clandestine meetings with girls and women.

Although not an employee of the factory and although his acquaintance with Frank was a [1 word illegible] Dalton testified that the factory superintendent knew of his visits to the basement with women. Dalton named three females with whom he went into the basement. He told Solicitor Dorsey that Jim Conley, the negro sweeper of the factory, allowed him to use the basement. He gave the negro a quarter to watch on one occasion.

Dalton admitted to Attorney Luther Rosser that he did not know his birthplace.

“Were you ever employed at the National Pencil factory?” asked Solicitor Dorsey after a perfunctory examination of the witness.

“No, sir,” Dalton replied.

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Bits of Circumstantial Evidence, as Viewed by State, Strands in Rope

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 8th, 1913

By O. B. KEELER.

They call it a chain that the State has forged, or has tried to forge, to hold Leo Frank to the murder of Mary Phagan.

But isn’t it a rope?

A chain, you know, is as strong as its weakest link. Take one link out, and the chain comes apart.

With a rope, it’s different.

Strand after strand might be cut or broken, and the rope still holds a certain weight. Then might come a time when the cutting of one more strand would cause the rope to break.

The point is, the finished rope will sustain a weight that would instantly snap any one of its several strands.

Bits of Evidence Threads.

And that is what the various bits of circumstantial evidence might better be called—strands or threads.

Edgar Allen Poe, in “The Mystery of Marie Roget,” has nearly exhausted the philosophical phase of accumulative circumstance and its relation to evidence.

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Scott Put Conley’s Story in Strange Light

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 8th, 1913

Harry Scott, of the Pinkerton agency, showed up the “confessions” of Conley in a peculiar light when he was called to the stand by the Frank defense Thursday afternoon.

The detective, questioned by Luther Rosser, told the jury that Conley, when he “had told everything,” when he had accused Frank of the killing and had made himself an accessory after the fact by declaring that he assisted in the disposal of the body; when every motive for holding anything back had been swept away by his third affidavit, still denied to him (Scott) many of the alleged circumstances to which he testified, while he was on the stand the first three days of the week.

It will be the contention of the defense that these many additions to Conley’s tale, inasmuch as all reason for concealing them had passed after Conley had come out with his accusations against Frank and his confession of his own part in the crime, are pure fabrications of the black man’s imagination, as are the other details of his tale.

Scott said that he had grilled and badgered Conley repeatedly about seeing Mary Phagan enter the factory. Even after the negro had made all his incriminating statements, he steadfastly denied seeing the girl victim go up the stairs to the second floor.

Denied He Had Seen Purse.

He denied also to Scott, the detective said, that he ever had seen the girl’s mesh bag or parasol, of that he ever had heard a girl’s scream while he was sitting on the first floor. He told the detectives that he did not see Lemmie Quinn or Monteen Stover enter the factory, although he later declared he had seen them both and so testified on the stand.

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State, Tied by Conley’s Story, Now Must Stand Still Under Hot Fire

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 8th, 1913

By JAMES B. NEVIN.

As the defense in the Frank case gets under way, it is evident enough, as it has been from the beginning of this case, that there is but one big, tremendously compelling task before it—the annihilation of Conley’s ugly story!

The State climaxed its case thrillingly and with deadly effect in the negro.

He came through the fire of cross-examination, exhaustive and thorough, in remarkably good shape, all things considered. He unfolded a story even more horrible than was anticipated. Certainly, in every conceivable way, he has sought to damage the defendant—even going to the extent of lodging against him another crime than murder!

Through the cross-examination, however, there an an evident vein of deadly purpose upon the part of the defense. Conley was given full limit to go his length. He went it—no disputing that!

The question is, did he go TOO FAR?

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Witnesses Attack Conley Story

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian
August 8th, 1913

Say Mary Phagan Did Not Reach Factory Before 12:10

FRANK TAKES ACTIVE INTEREST IN CASE AND ASSISTS HIS LAWYERS

The vital time element which may serve alone to convict Leo Frank or set him free, entered largely into the evidence presented Friday by the defense at the trial of the factory superintendent. Two witnesses testified that Mary Phagan did not arrive at Broad and Marietta streets the day she was murdered until about 12:071/2 o’clock, the time the English Avenue car on which she rod[e] from home was due there. One witness, W. M. Matthews, motorman on the car, testified that Mary did not get off at Forsyth and Marietta, but continued on the car and rode as far as Broad and Hunter where the car arrives at about 12:10 o’clock, [t]he conductor corroborated Matthews.

This testimony strongly supports the contention of the defense that Mary Phagan did not enter the factory until after 12:10 o’clock and that Monteen Stover, therefore, was in the factory and had left before the Phagan girl ever entered the doors. If the defense succeeds in establishing this, the visit of the Stover girl to the factory will be of tremendous significance because it is in direct conflict with the explicit testimony of James Conley that Mary Phagan entered the factory and supposedly was strangled before the Stover girl went up the stairs. Miss Stover testified that she did not see Frank in his office, but admitted she did not enter the inner office and [t]he defense will try to show Frank could have been writing at his desk and the girl not have seen him.

Seeks to Discredit Epp’s Story.

Arnold Throws Doubt on Epps.

Attorney Arnold, who was conducting the examination during the forenoon, sought aslo [sic], to throw a deep shadow of suspicion upon the story of young George Epp’s, who testified that he rode uptown with Mary Phagan the day she was killed.

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New Video from The American Mercury: Leo Frank Is Guilty


by Philip St. Raymond

WE ARE very pleased to present here a new American Mercury video based on the widely reprinted 2013 Mercury article by Bradford L. Huie, 100 Reasons Leo Frank Is Guilty, and using the audio book read by Miss Vanessa Neubauer as its basis. The article was written for our centenary retrospective of Mary Phagan’s 1913 murder. It provides in cinematic form an assessment of the Leo Frank case — perhaps the most amazing and intriguing murder mystery in American history — that simply cannot be found in the controlled media.

This ultra-high-resolution video is freely available to download so that you may keep it on your personal hard drive and re-upload it to video sharing platforms.

Today, the noose of censorship is being pulled ever-tighter by a media/government complex that is desperate to keep its lies and its crimes hidden from the public. Thus this video — exposing one of the first major operations on American soil of that complex — is very timely and important today. The American Mercury is proud to, once again in our 97-year history, bear witness to the truth.

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Source: The American Mercury

Hugh Dorsey Wins His Spurs; Crowd Recognizes Gameness

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

By Sidney Ormond

When the spectators at the Frank trial Wednesday broke into a ripple of applause, after Judge Roan had announced his decision that the damaging evidence of Jim Conley that he had “watched out for Frank on several occasions prior to the murder and had encountered him in an attitude which set him apart from normal men would remain in the records—when this applause came—it was not that any man contributing to it necessarily thought Frank guilty. It was simply a spontaneous tribute to Solicitor Hugh Dorsey who has fought so doggedly against such enormous odds to get before the jury a mass of evidence which, woven together, forms the whole fabric of the state’s case. The applause was a recognition of the ability of a young man who, say what you will of the guilt or the innocence of Leo M. Frank, has demonstrated that he is an an agonist of whom any man need feel fear.

The applause was simply an expression of the desire of the average person for fair play. Feeling for or against Frank seemed to be suspended. It was, more than anything else, an expression of approval for work well done by a young man who was passing through a strenuous ordeal. Interest in the actual evidence in question and its possible effect on the fate of the defendant seemed to be set aside for just the brief interval that it took for the clapping of hands.

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While Murder Trial Goes on Witnesses While Away Time With Old Camp Meeting Songs

Another in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

By Britt Craig.

There is one woman with no connection whatever with the Frank case who sits undisturbed in an obscure corner of the courtroom. Throughout Jim Conley’s testimony, she remained in her seat while court deputies removed women from all parts of the place and sent them outside at order of the judge.

She is Mrs. Hattie Barnett, a detective, and a woman who has seen more of the world and knows more of its multivaried phases than many of Atlanta’s most successful business men. She has seen and heard enough not to be touched by the negro’s sordid story. She has rubbed shoulders with all manner of mankind long enough not to be affected by anything which might develop in the trial.

Mrs. Barnett is attending the Frank case to study human nature and to study court procedure in a state’s biggest trial. To her, it will be a liberal education. She will learn many things that will be of inestimable value in her work.

Spectators have watched her as she sits alone in the obscure corner and listens intently to all of the trial. They have wondered at who she is and why she is able to remain there unmolested in a courtroom where all women have been barred. If the truth were known there is room for but little wonderment.

She is there for an education in a line of work she follows daily. A peculiar education it might be but a valuable education it is.

Mrs. Barnett is a middle aged woman who has been an investigator for the larger part of her life. She has been connected in many of the state’s biggest criminal cases and at first, did a deal of work on the Phagan investigation. Since the movement has been started in police headquarters to employ female detectives, it has been suggested that she be put at the head of the squad of women.

Witnesses Sing Time Away.

Sitting quietly for hours and hours in a large room is enough to try the patience of a modern Job. Thirty or more witnesses for both the state and defense in the Frank trial are cooped up in the second floor of the [1 word illegible] court building whiling away the long and tedious days by gossiping and talking and reading and dodging the newspaper cameras.

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