Solicitor Will Fix Frank Trial for June 30, He Says

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

The Atlanta Journal

Monday, June 23, 1913

Unless “Showing” Is Made in Open Court Why the Case Should Be Deferred, Trial Will Proceed


Detectives Question Her With View to Attacking Theory That Girl Was Slain on the First Floor

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey, it was definitely learned Monday, will set the case of the State against Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan, for June 30, and the solicitor will insist that a legal “showing” be made by the defense before a postponement is allowed.

During the day Monday or early on Tuesday morning the court calendar for the week of June 30 will be made up and then a small army of bailiffs and deputies will commence to summon talesmen. Owing to the unusual interest in the case it is probable that more than 150 talesmen will be summoned to the court in order that twelve jurors to try Frank may be picked from them.


It is understood that the court of its own volition will not interfere in the matter, and if a postponement of the case is secured it will be on a “legal showing” made in open court next Monday by the attorneys, who represent the accused man.

The illness of one of counsel or the absence from the city of a material witness or the engagement of counsel in another court, or any one of several other perfectly good excuses constitute legal grounds for the postponement of case, so the uncompromising attitude of the state by no means makes the trial of the case on June 30 a certanity [sic].

Luther Z. Rosser and Reuben R. Arnold, the able attorneys, who represent Frank, will give no intimation of their attitude towards entering into the case next Monday.

The published rumor that John W. Moore, another noted Atlanta lawyer, would assist Attorneys Arnold and Rosser and Herbert Haas in the case is without foundation, according to Mr. Moore and the other attorneys connected with the case.


What is believed by the prosecution of Leo M. Frank to be a refutation of the defense’s theory that Mary Phagan was slain at the foot of the stairs on the first floor of the pencil factory, occurred at police headquarters Sunday afternoon, when Jim Conley, the negro, identified Monteen Stover, aged 14, 17 South Forsyth street, as the girl in the raincoat and “easy walkers” who went to the office on the second floor at 12:05 o’clock and came down the stairs five or ten minutes later and left the building.

The little Stover girl was taken before Conley in the detectives’ room Sunday and positively identified by the negro, according to the detectives who were present, Chief Lanford and Detectives Campbell and Starnes.

Conley declared that she was the girl he watched while he was hid at the foot of the tsairs [sic]. The Stover girl entered the building, went up the stairs to the office, stayed there some five or ten minutes, and then came down and went out.

J. C. Hines, who went to headquarters with Walter Sudderth and Mr. Edmundson, pointed out Monteen Stover as the girl whom he saw enter the building.

Mr. Hines, who was present at the alleged identification, said Monday that Miss Stover admitted that she went to the factory at that time to draw her pay, went up the stairs to the second floor and found the office open. She said that she waited around five or ten minutes and noticed the clock when she went into the office. It was 12:05, she said. As no one seemed to be around, she asserted, she left the place some time between 12:10 and 12:15 o’clock.


The prosecution believes that this will kill the defense’s theory that Mary Phagan was killed at the foot of the[…]

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[…]stairs, assuming that the Phagan girl undoubtedly preceded Miss Stover into the factory. Miss Stover would have sen [sic] the body, they say, if Mary Phagan had been killed at the foot of the stairs.

Frank at the coroner’s inquest asserted that he paid Mary Phagan at about 12:10 or 12:15 o’clock, and that he himself did not leave the building until about 1 o’clock.


Monteen Stover admitted Monday morning that she has gone to police headquarters Sunday with her stepfather, H. W. Edmondson, Walter Sudderth and J. C. Hines, to see if Conley could identify her. That the police attach significance to the identification is evidenced by the frequent efforts made by detectives to get her to headquarters.

“They wanted me to go down there Friday,” said the girl Monday, “but mamma didn’t want me to. Then Saturday they ‘phoned but mamma said no. Papa said I better go Sunday afternoon, so he took me down to the station himself.

“I wore the raincoat and hat I wore the day I went to the factory, but I didn’t wear the tennis shoes I had on that day and Conley said I was the one he saw only he said I had on ‘easy walkers’ that day. I guess he meant the tennis shoes.

“When I went to the pencil factory I went right up the stairs to the office and went through the front room to where they paid off. Nobody was there. The office door was open so I thought some one was around. I waited about five minutes and I noticed the clock when I went in. It was five minutes after twelve. Nobody came and I didn’t hear anybody so went down the stairs again and left the factory.”

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The Atlanta Journal, June 23rd 1913, “Solicitor Will Fix Frank Trial for June 30, He Says,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)