Gantt Has Startling Evidence; Dorsey Promises New Testimony Against Frank

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

Atlanta Georgian
July 30th, 1913

STATE ADDS NEW LINK TO EVIDENCE CHAIN BY BOOTS ROGERS’ STORY

Sensational testimony by J. M. Gantt, discharged pencil factory employee, was promised Wednesday by Solicitor Dorsey and Frank A. Hooper, who is assisting him. They admitted that Gantt had testimony that had never before been published and would be one of the State’s most material and direct witnesses.

The defense has heard that Gantt will testify he saw Frank and Conley together on the day of the crime. Gantt was expected to follow Grace Hicks on the stand.

The State added another link in the chain of circumstantial evidence it is seeking to forge about Leo M. Frank by calling W. W. (Boots) Rogers to the stand Wednesday.

Rogers is the former county officer in whose automobile the policemen went to the National Pencil Factory Sunday morning after Newt Lee, factory nightwatchman, had called up the police station.

Rogers was on the stand two hours, but in this time he failed to give any material evidence that had not already been presented to the Coroner’s Jury.

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Will Leo Frank’s Lawyers Put Any Evidence Before the Jury?

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

Will Frank’s lawyers put any evidence before the court?

That is a question that was much discussed on the opening day by a score or more of lawyers who secured seats in the courtroom in order to hear the trial and to watch the way in which the skilled attorneys on both sides handled the case.

The fact that so many witnesses have been summoned by the defense does not mean to the legal mind that Attorneys Rosser and Arnold will put up any evidence any more than the summoning of scores of the accused man’s personal friends means that Frank’s lawyers will put his character in evidence.

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Unusual Interest Centers In Mrs. Frank’s Appearance

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

Up to the hour of the trial, Mrs. Leo M. Frank, wife of the young man now on trial for his life, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan, had kept in the background of the case. Daily she visited her husband at the jail, and brought him delicacies. She came quietly, and when she departed she created no stir of excitement among the hangers-on around the jail. She was accorded the most chivalrous treatment, and her desire to avoid notoriety was respected. Only once did an expression from her appear in the public prints, and then only because she felt her husband had not been fairly dealt with, and her wifey feelings compelled her to express her opinion of certain phases of the case.

Object of Great Interest.

For this reason there was a great deal of curiosity as to whether she would be present at the trial, and when she did make her appearance she was the object of an interest second only to that felt in her husband, by whose side she sat during the entire day. This interest, however, was not obtrusive or offensive. It was at all times respectful—a very natural interest which could not be repressed.

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Reporter Witnesses are Allowed in Court

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

Men Who May Be Called to Stand Report Trial by Attorney’s Agreement.

Just as the state was about to open formally its case against Leo M. Frank, Attorney Reuben R. Arnold interrupted by declaring to the court that he expected to have to call on a number of newspaper men to testify as the case went on.

“They know a great deal about this case, and we have complete files of the papers here and will be able to tell to a certain extent from them whom we will want,” he said.

“I may want to use some of them, too,” said Solicitor Hugh Dorsey.

“Well, your honor, I’m willing to waive the right to put these gentlemen under the rule, if the state is willing to do so,” continued Mr. Arnold.

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96 Men are Called Before Getting Jury

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

Attorneys for Both Sides Had Good Line on All Men Examined.

According to an unofficial account kept as the matter of striking the Frank jury was carried out, ninety-six men were called into the box and examined before the twelve men to try the case were finally selected. These men were divided into eight panels of twelve each, and came in a panel at a time.

Every bit of information that could be got together in advance about the men whose names were on the venire list of 144 men drawn last week, had been secured by lawyers on both sides, who also had outside aid in selecting the men.

A crowd of men who will take no other part in the legal fight surrounded the lawyers’ tables and gave suggestions as the various names were called. Among them were Oscar Simmons, of counsel for the Georgia Railway and Power company, which has practically the best and most complete list of the 6,000 men whose names are in the Fulton county jury list. Mr. Simmons aided the defense.

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Numerous Witnesses Called in Frank Case

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

List Indicates That Prisoner Is Prepared to Put Character in Evidence.

Numbers of witnesses were summoned to court by both sides and when the names were called so that all could be sworn it developed that scores of Leo Frank’s friends had been called upon. From the fact that there is not a possibility of one in this number knowing anything of the crime, it appears that the defense has made preparation, at least, to put Frank’s character in evidence and has secured these of his friends to testify for him.

Of the number of Frank’s close friends and brothers in his fraternal order it is expected that several will be used to support the claim which it is expected will be made that a card party was going on at his house on the night of April 26. By this means an alibi for a number of hours might be proved.

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Mincey, on Arrival Reaffirms Affidavit

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

W. H. Mincey, who made the famous affidavit in which he declared that Jim Conley had told him on April 26 that he had killed a girl, arrived late last night for the Frank trial.

In a statement made to The Constitution, Mr. Mincey reaffirmed his affidavit in its entirety and declared that he would tell this story on the witness stand. He was accompanied by Colonel Ben E. Neal, of Ringgold, Ga., a lawyer who has known him for years and who states that he will testify as to Mincey’s [rest of article cut off].

Burglars Try to Enter Home of Frank Juror

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

But F. V. L. Smith’s Wife Calls Police and Intruders Flee.

Two big, burly, black negroes who evidently had taken a decided interest in the Frand [sic] murder trial, and knew that F. V. L. Smith, of 481 Cherokee avenue, had been chosen for the jury yesterday and would not be home last night, attempted to enter his home.

No one was there but Mrs. Smith and her little 4-weeks’ old child. Seeing the negroes on the porch, she made a step toward them, and they fled. Within a few minutes they returned, and instead of fainting as most women would have done, she coolly walked to the phone and called the police station.

Call Officer Shumate answered the ring, and with his partner, Officer Cochran, the two made the trip to record-breaking time, getting out there in four minutes by the clock, but the burglars were gone.

Trial of Leo M. Frank on Charge of Murder Begins; Mrs. Coleman, George Epps and Newt Lee on Stand

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 29th, 1913

WATCHMAN TELLS OF FINDING BODY OF MARY PHAGAN

Trial Adjourns for the Day While Lee Is on the Stand, and His Cross-Questioning Will Be Resumed Today.

MOTHER AND THE WIFE OF PRISONER CHEER HIM BY PRESENCE AT TRIAL

Jury Is Quickly Secured and Mrs. Coleman, Mother of the Murdered Girl, Is First Witness to Take Stand.

With a swiftness which was gratifying to counsel for the defense, the solicitor general and a large crowd of interested spectators, the trial of Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan on April 26, in the building of the National Pencil factory, was gotten under way Monday.

When the hour of adjournment for the day had arrived, the jury had been selected and three witnesses had been examined. Newt Lee, the nightwatchman who discovered the dead body of Mary Phagan in the basement of the National Pencil factory, and who gave the first news of the crime to the police, was still on the stand, undergoing rigid cross-examination by Luther Z. Rosser, attorney for Frank.

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Rabbi Marx Asserts His Belief in Frank

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Can’t Build Case on Pack of Lies Any More Than House on Cards, Rabbi Says

In the room directly above the one where Leo M. Frank was on trial for the murder of Mary Phagan Monday afternoon were gathered a score of friends of the accused who eagerly discussed his chances for and against acquittal.

Prominent among them was Dr. David I. Marx, rabbi of the Jewish synagogue to which Frank belonged. With other friends of the prisoner he declared emphatically his belief in Frank’s innocence.

“There is no man in Atlanta,” said Dr. Marx, “more eager to see justice done or to find the guilty man in this case than am I, and the very fact of this and of my presence here shows my deep belief in the innocence of Mr. Frank. The truth is obliged to come out at last. You no more can build a case on a pack of lies than you can build a house on a pack of cards without a downfall.”

Spectators at Frank Trial Make an Absorbing Study

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

They Come From Every Station in Life—From the Ragged Newsboy to the Business Man With the Diamond Scarf Pin and the Georgia Lawmaker

The personnel of the spectators at the average murder trial is one of the most interesting phases of it, and the trial of Leo Frank for the murder of Mary Phagan is no exception to the general rule.

One glance about the court room as the case proceeded Monday afternoon showed an ever-changing kaleidoscope of ever changing faces, holding a single characteristic common to all, a look of intense interest that kept every face turned continually in the direction of the prisoner and the opposing attorneys.

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Everybody’s a “Reporter,” Now, Else an “Old Time Friend,” Says Guardian of Court House Door

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

They Been 15 Reporters Here in the Last Five Minutes,” He Says, “and What’s Not Reporters Is Boyhood Friends I Don’t Remember”

“You are?” said the man who guards the foot of the steps. “Well, son, they been fifteen reporters here in the last five minutes. They represented everything from “Nova Scotia Times” to the “Saskatchewan Gazette.” Who do you report for?”

And it took a letter of identification from the whole press table to gain admittance to the Frank trial for an unoffending and rather retiring reporter who merely wished to glance over the court room and fill his brain with “genre” impressions, as one might say, local color, features, pathos, smiles, and a few trifles.

“Why,” said the guardian of the steps, “folks will be anything to get in here. Look at them fifteen that came right out and said they was reporters. They was some anxious, wasn’t they?

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Frank Trial Will Last One Week And Probably Two, Attorneys Say

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Indications Are That Trial Will Be Longest Over Which Judge Roan Has Presided, To Hold Two Sessions Daily

Attorneys both for the defense and for the prosecution of Leo M. Frank believe that his trial will last at least one week, perhaps, two weeks.

If the trial continues through more than one week it will be the longest over which Judge L. S. Roan has ever presided.

But, while he will expedite the trial as fast as possible, he intenrs [sic] to give attorneys all the time needed for the introduction of testimony and for argument.

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Mother’s Sorrow and Newsie’s Wit Play on Emotions at Frank Trial

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Each of First Three Witnesses In Case Shows Distinct Personality and Entirely Different Side of Human Nature, Some Character Studies

Three of the witnesses who testified Monday afternoon at the Frank trial were more distinct as personalities than the characters you could see portrayed in any theater, except that very tragic one of a criminal court room.

Much testimony and such individuality as that of these witnesses, has kept the court room crowded by at least 200 people during every minute of the Frank trial—crowded with well dressed men who lean forward in their seats, intent on every detail of the trial, every question that the attorneys ask, every answer that the witnesses give.

They are first attracted to the court room by different reasons for curiosity: but they remain because of their common interest in “character.” In having a glimpse of distinct personalities, in seeing the stubbornness with which Newt Lee adheres to his testimony while lawyers try to confound him.

SORROW OF MOTHER.

Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of Mary Phagan, was first of the three witnesses who testified Monday afternoon. She spoke in a low voice, telling of how her daughter had left home on the day of the murder, and she seemed to have finished her testimony, when a court officer drew forth a suitcase which had been hidden behind several chairs.

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Frank’s Undistur[b]ed Face Wonder of the Court Room

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

His Brow Does Not Wrinkle, His Eyes Do Not Quail or Even Flicker—He Is Cool and Quiet

Leo M. Frank’s expression of quiet confidence has surprised every visitor to the court room where he is being tried for murder.

He sites for the most part with his hands crossed, and listens coolly to the testimony or to the argument of attorneys.

Not since the trial began has he seemed the least perturbed. His manner has been quiet and contained, like that of one who is sure of himself and sure of his cause.

Yet he has not seemed indifferent. He has been attentive at all times, but his attention has been marked by as little excitement or distress as that of any spectator.

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Lawyers Hammer Lee for Two Hours at Monday Afternoon Session

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Negro Nightwatchman Who Found Mary Phagan’s Body in National Pencil Factory on Stand—Girl’s Mother and Newsboy Examined

Newt Lee, the negro nightwatchman who found Mary Phagan’s body in the pencil factory basement, was hammered by the defense for over two hours, on the witness stand Monday afternoon.

Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of the murdered child, and George W. Epps, a playmate who came to town with her on the fatal day, testified in that order. Mrs. Coleman being the first witness called to the stand when the trial started.

Newt Lee was the third witness. The testimony of the others had been brief, under direct and cross-examination. Newt Lee’s direct testimony was not extensive, but his evidence under cross-examination by Attorney Luther Rosser filled out the rest of the afternoon, and he still was on the stand under cross-examination when court recessed for the night.

At 3 o’clock court re-convened.

The jury, which had lunched in a downtown restaurant under guard of two deputy sheriffs, and then had been locked in its room, entered court.

Leo M. Frank, the accused, re-entered court and resumed his seat between his wife and his mother.

Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of Mary Phagan, the murdered girl, was called as the first witness. She took the stand at 3:05 o’clock.

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Mincey in Atlanta, But Has Not Been to Trial

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Agent Who Said That Conley Told Him of Killing “a Girl” May Testify

W. H. Mincey, who has made affidavit that James Conley, the negro sweeper, practically confessed to him as being the murderer of Mary Phagan, is in Atlanta but has not yet gone to the courthouse where Frank is being tried.

At the time of the murder, Mincey was employed here as an insurance solicitor. On the day of the murder, he says that he met Conley at the corner of Carter and Electric streets.

The negro, according to the affidavit, was drinking, and when the solicitor mentioned insurance the negro flared into anger.

“I’ve killed a girl today,” the affidavit charges Conley, the negro sweeper, with having said, “I don’t want to hurt anybody else.”

Several weeks ago Mincey left Atlanta to take a position as school teacher. But attorneys for the defense say that he has returned, and is now here.

Factory Girls Eager to Testify for Frank

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Thirty Girls and Men Are Waiting to Appear as Character Witnesses.

Thirty girls and men who are employes of the National Pencil factory are waiting to testify to the good character of Leo M. Frank.

“Ever girl employed at the factory believes that Mr. Frank is innocent,” said Miss Rebekah Carson Monday afternoon. “He was as kind as an employer could be. There never was a time when he wasn’t considerate of every one employed at the factory. But at the same time he was a man with two ideas. And they were his wife and his business.

“If he hadn’t been so intent upon his work, he would have taken a half holiday on that Saturday and he wouldn’t now be accused as he is. It was his faithfulness to his work which caused him to accused of this murder.

“He’s not guilty. I’d still believe in his innocence even though he was convicted ten times over.

“Everyone employed at the factory believes as I do. Everyone knows that Mr. Frank was kind and gentle, and that he was honest and straight in everything that he did. You won’t find an employe of the factory who doesn’t really believe that and who isn’t ready to testify to it before a jury.”

After Rosser’s Fierce Grilling All Negro, Newt Lee, Asked for Was Chew or “Bacca-AnyKind”

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

Atlanta Georgian
July 29th, 1913

He Looks Like a Negro, He Talks Like a Negro, and He Has the Will and the Manner of Darkies in Old-Time Slavery Days—Was on the Stand Three Hours Tuesday Morning

“All I wanted was a chew of ‘bacca. Yes, sir, dat was all,” said Newt Lee after he had testified for three hours Tuesday morning at the Frank trial, had answered question upon question, had experienced all the exquisite delights of a real cross-examination.

“I can’t say I was tired. Naw, sir, not ‘zactly that I jes’ needed the ‘bacca. Soon as I left the stand, the first thing I did was to ask for a chew, and then I felt all right.

“Mr. Rosser was putty terrible, wasn’t he? Sorter wants you to say things jes his way. But I was there to tell the truf and I told it.

“LAWYERS AND DETECTIVES.”

“Lawyers and detectives are sorter alike when the comes to askin’ questions. I’d ’bout as soon be talked to by one as another. Lawyers, though, don’t ‘buse youn like detectives, that’s a fact.

“But when folks don’t do you right, you jes know they hurtin’ they souls and ain’t doin’ you any real harm. That’s the way to look at things.

“Naw, sir, I didn’t get mad when Mr. Rosser kept tryin’ to make me say what he wanted said. Court’s a place where you ‘spect to be questioned, and there ain’t nothin’ to do but jes answer the best you kin. They certainly worked on me, but all I needed was a little bit of ‘bacca.

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Frequent Clashes Over Testimony Mark Second Day of Frank Trial

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

QUESTIONS DIRECTED AT NEGRO INDICATED AN EFFORT TO THROW SUSPICION UPON WATCHMAN

We Might as Well Begin to Show the Negro a Criminal Now as Later,” Declared Attorney Rosser, In Arguing for Admissability of His Questions—Negro Was Taken Over His Testimony Many Times in Effort to Break Him Down

INDICATIONS TUESDAY ARE THAT TRIAL WILL LAST MANY DAYS, PROBABLY AS LONG AS TWO WEEKS

Morning Session Enlivened by Clashes Between Attorneys, Every Point Is Bitterly Contested—Frank Keeps Serene and Untroubled Throughout Session—Full Story of Testimony Given by Witnesses During the Morning

After a luncheon recess of an hour and a half Tuesday the trial of Leo M. Frank was resumed at 2 p. m. with Police Sergeant L. S. Dobbs still on the witness stand. The morning session was given over to the continued examination of Newt Lee, the negro night watchman, and the direct and cross examination of Sergeant Dobbs.

There were frequent clashes between the attorneys for the defense and the solicitor during the morning. Every point was bitterly contested, and once the jury was sent from the room while the lawyers argued the fine points of the law. It was evident that the case was to be fought at every point.

The most significant feature of the morning session was an intimation by Attorneys Rosser and Arnold, counsel for Frank, that they might seek to connect the negro nigh watchman with the murder. It was during a colloquy between the lawyers for the defense and the state relative to the admissibility of the negro’s testimony as to what was said to him by the police officers about the contents of the notes found beside Mary Phagan’s body.

Solicitor Dorsey made the point that the notes had not yet been introduced as evidence and unless the defense was seeking to impeach the witness or to connect him with the crime it was not proper for him to questioned concerning the contents of the notes.

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