Harrell Rhome on the Case of Mary Phagan and Leo Frank

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By Dr. Harrell Rhome Editor of Gnostic Liberation Front

Editing and consultation by Mark Farrell. Updated and enhanced at the advice of researchers at The Leo Frank Research Library www.LeoFrank.org. The original article appeared in the July 2010 Nationalist Times Newspaper and as a special supplement to the CDL Report newspaper.


Why reopen an old murder case from almost a hundred years ago? We do this because it has implications for our present times. Indeed, this case was a hot-button news item back in the day. Nearly every detail of the trial was covered feverishly in the Atlanta media of the time. It was this rather bizarre affair that gave rise to the formation of the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith (ADL). ADL is essentially a not-so-covert intel, Espionage, and propaganda op supporting Israel-first interests over those of the USA. As with any covert cabal, it is instructive to study its real origins. If you follow mainstream news, you can see that the ADL continues to prosper and gain influence, being selected by many Federal and State organizations like the FBI and prominent police agencies for “training” (indoctrination) in hate crimes and anti-Semitic incidents. With an issue this contentious and controversial, it is good to start in the beginning, and what we see is a rather shady set of origins. The ADL is dedicated to the memory of Leo Frank, who was a vicious, cold-blooded child rapist and sex killer. So, let’s step back in time and take a new look at an old case that still cries out for justice and truth after almost a hundred years.


Leo Max Frank was a well-educated young Jewish fellow raised in New York and trained in Europe to manufacture pencils, later coming to Atlanta to work as a factory operations director of the National Pencil Company. He was married in 1910, living with his wife’s parents at their home on 68 East Georgia Avenue (now an overpass). Atlanta had more than a few Jewish residents in those days, some 3,000 families and Leo was a high-degree member of B’nai B’rith, a quasi-Masonic Jewish lodge. In 1912, he was elected president of the Atlanta B’nai B’rith chapter known affectionately by its members as ‘The Gate City Lodge.’


Mary Phagan was a 13-year-old child laborer in Frank’s sweatshop factory working in the machine department situated at the rear section of the second floor. She had been laid off because a shipment of brass sheet metal normally processed for holding erasers onto the pencils had not arrived. For her previous work on Monday, before being laid off she was owed $1.20. Phagan earned about 7.5 cents an hour according to the former paymaster of the factory. On Friday, April 25th 1913, she had asked a friend, Helen Ferguson, to pick up her wages, which her friend had done several times previously without problem. However, her friend was told that Mary needed to come in person to get her money the next day, which was Saturday, a day the factory was supposed to be closed. On the 26th of April at noon, Mary went to the second floor of the factory to collect her pay envelope. It was a legal holiday, Georgia Confederate Memorial Day, a significant Southern cultural event and a big parade would be held, she knew the office be open available to collect her meager pay at noon. The factory was open on Saturday, even if practically and almost entirely empty of people; and, oddly enough, the plant manager himself was on duty at the factory, while the rest of Atlanta was on holiday. Frank himself had planned baseball date with his brother-in-law Charles Ursenbach, instead of attending the Metropolitan Opera with his wife, Lucille Selig Frank.


Was it a crime of opportunity or passion, heat of the lonely moment or was it planned? This is unclear, but whatever the reason and circumstances, a sadistic demonic assault and torturous beating, rape and murder ensued. There is evidence to suggest that Leo Frank was infatuated with Mary Phagan and jealous that she was interested in the former paymaster at the factory James Milton Gantt. Gantt had been fired by Leo Frank because supposedly $1 was missing from the payroll box.

Leo Frank took the innocent victim down the hall from his second floor office into the metal room (machine department), where he brutally beat, stabbed, raped, tortured and sexually assaulted little Mary Phagan, eventually strangling and murdering the innocent child so that she could not tell anyone. Some speculate as to possible ritualistic motives, and certain crime elements (especially the victim profile) are loosely parallel to Jewish Ritual Murder. Indeed, Newt Lee, a night watchman who testified at the trial, described finding Mary Phagan’s body in a horribly mauled and mutilated state (see other testimony from the original Brief of Evidence, p. 11):

“Her face was punctured, full of holes and was swollen and black. She had a cut on the left-side of her head, as if she had been struck, and there was a little blood there. The cord was around her neck, sunk into her flesh.”

Regardless of the motive, the crime scene was extremely gory, and a young Christian girl had been horribly abused, freakishly beaten, and sexually mutilated. She was dragged over the dirty basement floor so much that she was virtually unidentifiable when found, appearing to be black! The national press jumped on board, and the murder of little Mary Phagan became a lead story in the news of the day. Every breakthrough and major event was reported in the triumvirate of local newspapers, the Atlanta Constitution, Georgian and Journal.


Due to his prominent position at the plant as well as in the Atlanta Jewish Community, Frank was not an immediate person of interest. German Jews had established a reputation in the South as being well assimilated, mannered, hard working and industrious. Frank had a good outward reputation, and provided jobs for hundreds of people at his factory. Suspicion later fell on him when employees spoke of his sexual harassment of female child employees and of his curious interest in office boys.

In the earliest days of the investigation potential suspects were accused or intimated by Frank in turn, and they were arrested, but turned out to be dead ends. A man who was thought to have allegedly tried to court Mary, and who was accused of giving her drugs and alcohol, was arrested. A major figure in the case, a black night watchman from the factor, Newt Lee, was the first to be arrested and Leo Frank gave false evidence against him that ended up ironically helping the police figure out who the real murdered was. Lee discovered the body in the basement early Sunday morning on April 27th the day after Confederate Memorial Day and the racist Leo Frank tried to frame him with a doctored time card and blood soaked shirt. Before anyone even considered Frank, two other suspects were investigated: One was a former bookkeeper, James Milton Gantt, thought to have been mutually attracted to the pretty young girl, and the other was a mulatto roustabout nick-named “snow ball”. Both were eventually released.

Interestingly, as some perpetrators do, the factory manager injected himself into the investigation. He made headlines by hiring high profile expert sleuths from the Pinkerton Detective Agency—seasoned private eyes to assist the police and deflect suspicion from Leo Frank. While other suspects came under the magnifying glass, suspicion eventually fell on Leo Frank, and he became the prime suspect. He initially said that he didn’t know who Mary Phagan was by name, and couldn’t identify her name when she was laying dead on a cold slab at the undertakers establishment (PJ Bloomfields). But later he admitted seeing her alive, when she came to pick up her paycheck at noon. Leo Frank was the last person to acknowledge seeing Mary Phagan alive, before she was bludgeoned, raped and strangled. Leo Frank changed the time Mary Phagan had allegedly arrived into his office four times, naturally causing conspicuous inconsistencies in his timeline.

Among other things that raised suspicion was that Frank normally would not have been at the almost deserted factory on a state holiday, the day of Mary’s murder. On the day before, he asked a night watchman to come in early, and, when the watchman showed up, Frank told him to go out on the town for a couple hours. A black worker, Jim Conley, an accessory after the fact, later said he assisted Frank by moving Mary’s body from metal room after Frank killed her to the basement, 2 floors below. And, Frank obviously was the one who took Phagan down the elevator with Conley as he was the only one who had a key. Though Leo Frank’s sex-murder denialists (Frankites) would claim Conley didn’t use the elevator to help Leo Frank, but instead Conley carried her body down to the basement using the ladder – this anomaly is one of their central arguments as to why Leo Frank is innocent.


The case went to the grand jury promptly after a coroner’s inquest. A grand jury of 23 men was asked to review the facts against Leo Frank. The public and the press demanded action without delay, but everything seemed to have been done properly, carefully and cautiously so as not to bungle a well argued and reasoned case. As to any charges of ethnic and religious bias, the grand jury that unanimously indicted Leo Frank included four Atlanta Jews. And, of course, it is well known in the Deep South that blacks were often dealt with harshly, and it is difficult to believe that white Southerners would allow a black child-rapist-murderer go free just to persecute an innocent white Jew. Two jurors were out of town on the day of the final deliberation on Saturday, May 24th, 1913, the grand jury voted unanimously 21 to 0 to indict Leo Frank of the murder of Mary Phagan.


The evidence was overwhelmingly clear at the trial, yet one of Frank’s attorneys, Reuben Arnold, in desperation argued that the defendant was treated unfairly simply because he was Jewish, thus playing the “anti-Semitism card” to the best of his abilities. Frank was tried in a one month long trial, convicted on August 25th, 1913, by the jury with a recommendation of “no mercy” and sentenced to death by Judge Roan. However, this was not the end. Expensive private investigators from the Burns Detective Agency funded by the Atlanta Jewish community even came up with another suspect—once again, a black—but the allegations went nowhere and turned out to be a fraud.

Race was indeed a factor—if you were to believe Leo Frank’s defense team, consisting of several well-paid lawyers. His supporters hoped that southerners would jump at the chance to blame blacks for a crime against a white girl, but this racist tactic didn’t work on White Southerners. Beyond that, Frank was portrayed as a homosexual pervert who also preyed on young boys. It was known to Frank’s inner party at the factory that he was having love affairs with the office boys, including Alonzo Mann, who would defend Leo Frank 70 years later with fabricated stories.

Over a dozen female employees corroborated his sexual propositions, innuendos, bad character for lasciviousness and predatory nature. Needless to say, all of this worked against him as did his attempts to bring over a 100 witnesses from the Northeast to testify that he had a good character. Duly convicted, Frank went to prison to await execution. Appeals efforts continued all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the conviction stood firm. His fate seemed sealed. Or, was it?


Events took an ugly turn in August 1915. The guilty verdict was upheld after nearly 13 appeal attempts and all legal appeals options were exhausted. Then, outgoing governor John Slaton, who was given a partnership with one of Leo Frank’s attorney’s law firm, shocked the Georgia public through this conflict of interest by commuting the death sentence to life in prison. The people were outraged, taking to the streets and marching in angry protest in major cities around Georgia.

A group, calling themselves the Knights of Mary Phagan, led by some very prominent citizens, abducted Leo Frank from a distant prison where he had been relocated. With the allegedly complicity of the guards, the well-organized mob seized and later hung him in the early hours of August 17th 1915 at former Sheriff William Frey’s farm.

A separate mob of about 1,000 men even marched on and attacked the governor’s mansion, but was turned back by the National Guard. Some Jewish Supremacist activist sources, like Leonard Dinnerstein, say over 3,000 Jews left Atlanta as a result of the Leo Frank case, but this may be an overly dramatized claim; proof is lacking. Census data indicates that the Jewish population of the greater Atlanta region and Georgia as a whole actually almost doubled between 1910 and 1920.

In terms of just one example of the importance of this case in the affairs of the day, the lynching, widely covered in the press, contributed to the rise and rebirth of the defunct Ku Klux Klan, already a work in progress through the efforts of Georgia publisher and politician, Tom Watson (See his five major works on the Leo Frank Case written in January, March, August, September and October of 1915 through his popular Watson’s Magazine). He wrote about the murder in various newspapers, and may have had a remote hand in planning the lynching. Whatever the case, Watson’s influence was enhanced by his connection with the matter, and the rebirth of the Ku Klux Klan was born in 1915, boosted by the nationwide publicity. Watson was eventually elected U.S. senator in 1920, and the prosecuting attorney in the case, Hugh Dorsey, was later elected governor of Georgia in 1916.


In the 1980s, an eighty-three-year-old, senile Alonzo Mann, who was a personal employee and homosexual boy-toy lover of Leo Frank (a young clerk and “gofer” in the pencil factory office back in 1913), came forward with a contrived affidavit saying he saw Jim Conley, the janitor, moving Mary’s body from the lobby onward toward the basement. It did not provide any new evidence per say because Conley admitted that Frank had offered him money to move the body from the 2nd floor metal room to the basement. Mann claims he kept silent in fear of death threats from Conley and promises made to his family. Alonzo Mann’s central reason for not telling anyone is that his mother told him to keep silent, which makes little sense, Why would any mother tell her child to be silent regarding an innocent little murdered girl and then allow their son to return to work the following Monday morning to the same factory where Conley was still present. His statements came off as contrived and as an appeasement for powerful Jewish interests. Mann was apparently in need of medical treatment, because the VA hospitals were insufficient and he had little money to his name. In a segregated South, no white boy or girl would have feared reporting a black murderer of a white girl. Nor would parents tell a young white boy not to talk with the police if he had evidence of a black committing such a major crime. The affidavit smacked of the same manipulation, the same outright lies and fabrications by the Jewish Community that continue to this very day over the Leo Frank case.

“Johnson City, Tenn., March 19, 1985. Alonzo Mann, who broke a 69- year silence to say the wrong man was convicted of a notorious killing and hanged by a lynch mob that led to a resurgence of the Ku Klux Klan, died Monday from pneumonia at the age of 87. Three years ago Mr. Mann, a resident of Bristol, Va., after keeping silent since 1913, said in a sworn statement that Leo Frank, a Jewish pencil merchant, was innocent of the murder of 14-year-old Mary Phagan at an Atlanta pencil factory. He said the real killer was Jim Conley, a janitor at the factory. In 1983, the Georgia Board of Pardons and Paroles disregarded Mr. Mann’s sworn affidavit and pleas by three Jewish organizations and declined to pardon Mr. Frank, saying it was impossible to determine the truth after 70 years.” NY Times, 03.20.85.

Even though the investigative methods a century ago were not as sophisticated as what we have today (modern forensics would have solved the case), we have to assume that the thirteen-year-old Mann was thoroughly questioned by not only the Atlanta Police, but also by the Pinkerton detectives and the Burns Agency hired by the Atlanta Jewish community. While we know little about the facts or about his family, it is hard to see how the threat could have been carried out without bringing unwanted attention to other pencil factory employees, and especially the janitor, who had already been questioned and was later jailed and then incarcerated for 11 months. Pointing the finger at a black perpetrator (or accomplice?) a hundred years ago would not really have been much of a risk, making Mann’s 1980’s statements seem nothing more than dishonest embellishments.

Let’s speculate a bit more. What if Jim Conley was not the killer, but functioned as an accomplice who did things like moving the corpse as he admitted in the trial for Frank? Of course, he would have known who the killer was. So if we follow this scenario, death threats demanding silence would not have come from the black accomplice, but from those supporting the cause of the killer. If we speculate just a bit more, we might assume the silence was not so much in response to threats, but that money could have been given to Mann and his family over the years to insure their silence and cooperation, perhaps including the affidavit shortly before his death.


As I’ve said, all of this is hypothetical, but further casting a haze over the whole matter of the crime scene is just exactly when and where Mann saw the janitor with the body. Remember, this was a holiday and the factory was closed, yet Leo Frank and his young male file clerk were there at midday, doing something. Mann testified at the trial he had left the office well before Phagan had arrived. But beyond that, it was already known that Jim Conley admitted to being an accomplice. Listen to the still-existing early phonograph recording of “The Ballad of Mary Phagan.” Written and performed during the Leo Frank appeals, the old folk song clearly mentions the black accomplice by name! More could be said, but the deathbed affidavit confirms only that Frank had an accomplice; and nothing more.


Little Mary Phagan
She left her home one day;
She went to the pencil-factory
To see the big parade.

She left her home at eleven,
She kissed her mother good-by;
Not one time did the poor child think
That she was a-going to die.

Leo Frank he met her
With a brutish heart, we know;
He smiled and said, “Little Mary,
You won’t go home no more.

Hear this old folk song on YouTube, shown with rare photos.


In 1986, after failing to do so in 1983, and under heavy outside pressure from the Jewish community, the State of Georgia pardoned Leo Frank. The decision was essentially based on the premise that the State of Georgia failed to adequately protect Leo Frank, which was true. But as we already know, this had little to do with his actual guilt or innocence in the case. And, it must be recognized that the governor was acting in a conflict of interest to commute Frank’s sentence to life-in-prison, which was illegal. Nevertheless, the State of Georgia failed to recognize this obvious fact and granted the pardon. Still, it had a key proviso no one could fail to notice. It was granted “…without attempting to address the question of guilt or innocence”. The pardon was followed by a four hour TV “docu-drama” starring Jack Lemmon with a very predictable and politically correct storyline, but the 1986 pardon did not exonerate Leo Frank of the crime in any way.

Due to the wave of propaganda, little Mary Phagan’s murder is now perceived by many individuals who are unacquainted with the facts as an unsolved cold case; and the duly convicted child-rapist-murderer Leo Frank is now regarded as a martyr to anti-Semitism and southern miscarriages of justice. But, if Frank was innocent, was the real killer ever found? Neither the police nor the district attorney ever arrested or indicted anyone else. Moreover, neither the prestigious Pinkerton Detective Agency, nor the highly paid private eyes provided by the Atlanta Jewish community found any other suspects. Surely, the private investigators were sufficiently motivated as this would have been quite a feather in their caps and a big fee in their pockets.


But far beyond all of this, one thing is indisputable: Little Mary’s murder was a horrendous, hate-filled blood crime inflicted on a young white Christian girl. Her memory demands the truth about what really happened to her. And, as you can see by the appearance of this article, not everyone has been silent or parrots the politically correct party line.

Leo Frank is held up by the Jewish Community and many liberal writers as a Jewish martyr to Anti-Semitism and bigotry, but his crime has been whitewashed to hide the truth.

In 1987, in reaction to the half-hearted pardon, Little Mary’s grandniece, Mary Phagan Kean, did her own research and wrote The Murder of Little Mary Phagan, 1987 (available for reading online at archive.org). She speaks plainly. “I think that the truth isn’t really told about Leo Frank. He is not a martyr, he is a murderer.”  Neither she nor her family ever doubted Frank was the real killer. But, when political correctness takes precedence over commonsense and justice, truth is the first casualty. Soon we approach the one hundredth anniversary of little Mary’s murder. This nasty case still stands out even now, when we are inundated by TV crime dramas and violent murders that no longer seem to shock us.


Why spend time rehashing the details of an old, nearly forgotten murder case? What is the point after almost a hundred years? The point is clear. As long as the Anti-Defamation League, ADL of B’nai B’rith, a private intelligence and espionage organization directly reporting to the State of Israel, exists, the Mary Phagan Case makes more than a few valid reference points. When the B’nai B’rith (Sons of the Blood Covenant Kabalistic Judeo-Freemasonic) Lodge created the Anti-Defamation League in 1913, it was dedicated to the life and memory of Lodge Brother and President Leo Frank, surely and truly one of their own protected tribal leaders in a long tradition of Jewish Supremacism.

Yes, Leo Frank, a man who was a brutal, bloody pedophile sex killer, inspired the formation of this nefarious group. And, due to their fanatical influence, they succeeded in getting a posthumous pardon for a child-rapist-murderer, who committed one of the most brutal crimes of the 20th century.


Visit a very creative and complete web site called The Leo Frank Research Library at www.LeoFrank.org. Do you need more proof? More documentation of guilt? The numerous postings include a crucially important book length manuscript entitled The Argument Of Hugh M. Dorsey, Solicitor-General, Atlanta Judicial Circuit At The Trial Of Leo M. Frank, Charged With The Murder Of Mary Phagan.

Source: Gnostic Liberation Front

Last Updated: April 26, 2013