Former Playmates Meet Girl’s Body at Marietta

Former Playmates Meet Girl's Body at Marietta

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

Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, April 29th, 1913

The little town of Marietta, Ga., where her baby eyes first opened upon the light of day scarcely fourteen years ago, will to-day witness the sorrowful funeral of Mary Phagan, the sweet young girl who was mysteriously murdered in the National Pencil Factory Saturday night and whose body was later found in the basement where it had been dragged by unknown hands.

The casket, accompanied by the girl’s stricken family—her mother and stepfather, her sister Ollie, 18 years old, and her three brothers, Ben, Charley and Josh, all young boys, left the Union Depot at 8:15 o’clock this morning. Reaching Marietta, it was met by throngs of Mary’s former playmates and friends bearing flowers to lay upon the young girl’s grave after they have looked for the last time upon her face.

Simple Service.

She will be laid to rest in a little old-fashioned cemetery where numerous relatives have preceded her, and her body lowered into the earth after a simple funeral service. It will be preached in the Second Baptist Church, which stands on the cemetery grounds, the officiating minister being Rev. Dr. Lincus, pastor of the East Point Christian Church, of which the dead girl’s mother is a member. Dr. Lincus will go direct from East Point to hold the service.

Besides the family, there were probably a dozen or more relatives and friends from Atlanta who will also go up to the funeral. In Marietta they were to meet relatives, gathered from several counties, where the news of the child’s tragic death has been wired.

The body will be taken to the station in a hearse by the undertakers in whose shop it has lain for the past two days, while thousands of people came to look upon it. The coffin will be of pure white, befitting the innocent of the young girl lying within it, and only a simple plate with the child’s name will appear on the top.

Throughout the day at the dead girl’s home callers have gone to express their sorrow over the tragedy and their willingness to be of whatever service they might to the family. The same word met them:

“There is nothing that anybody can do—we must only bear it!”

Mrs. Coleman Ill.

From the moment she received the news of her child’s death, Mrs. Coleman has been unable to leave the house. She has not even visited the undertaking pariors to see the body. It was not considered best for her in her weakened and nervous condition, caused by the shock of the murder. As it is, it is feared that she will break down at the funeral, and every care will be taken with her on the way to Marietta that she may be strong to face the ordeal. Although Mr. Coleman, the child’s stepfather, had only known Mary since his marriage to her mother a year ago, he seemed stricken with sorrow over her death, and in speaking of her to a Georgian reporter almost broke down in telling the simple arrangements that had been made for her burial.

Great bouquets of beautiful flowers have been sent to the home by friends all over Atlanta, and the dead girl’s bier at the undertaking shop was fragrant with masses of carnations and roses throughout Sunday and Monday. Hundreds of her boy and girl associates at the factory and friends of her neighborhood have gone to see her body. For, although she was such a young girl, she had made many acquaintances, and was widely loved.

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Atlanta Georgian, April 29th 1913, “Former Playmates Meet Girl’s Body at Marietta,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)