Beavers Trying to Find Gentry

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

The Atlanta Constitution

June 13, 1913

Felder Says He Will Be Produced at the Proper Time. Notary Declares Affidavit Is Genuine.

Miss Jeannette Henning, the notary public whose official seal was attached to the affidavit made recently by George Gentry, has informed The Constitution that she took the document from him last Monday, and that although it is genuine, she does not know its contents. She states that she had never met Gentry prior to the time he made the affidavit.

Chief Beavers, who has for the past several days been attending the convention of national police chiefs in Washington, is conducting a search of that city for the young stenographer. He is assisted by a number of detectives put at his command by Major Sylvester, head of the Washington police department.

Beavers was requested by Detective Chief Lanford to find Gentry, and to ascertain positively whether or not the youth had attested to the startling affidavit. Thursday noon, Lanford received a message from the chief saying that he was unable to locate his man, but that the search would continue as long as Beavers remained in Washington.

Continue Reading →

Felder Returns Phagan Fund to Givers

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

The Atlanta Georgian

June 11, 1913

Attorney Explains Disposition of Money Subscribed to Secure Burns’ Services.

Colonel Thomas B. Felder Wednesday issued an itemized statement of the funds subscribed by Atlanta citizens, to secure the employment of the Burns Detective Agency to investigate the Phagan mystery, to show that these funds had been returned to the donors.

According to Mr. Felder’s statement, but $102 was actually subscribed. This amount was placed in the hands of Curtis N. Anderson, a member and treasurer of the law firm of Felder, Anderson, Dillon & Whitman. In a letetr [sic] to Colonel Felder, dated June 9, Mr. Anderson gives the following disposition of the fund:

“I have received from contributions to the Burns fund $102. Several of the contributions were anonymously made; in the majority of other cases contributors requested that their names be withheld, and in some cases the addresses of the parties making the donations are unknown to me. Under your direction, I am returning to the contributors the several amounts sent in by them, where the names and addresses of the contributors are known, and I am directed by you to return the balance upon their request.

Felder Pays Extra Expense.

“I also desire to say that you have directed me to charge whatever disbursements have been made, which, by the way, are several times over larger than the contributions that have come in, to your personal account. This I have done.”

The following amounts in chronological order were received by Mr. Anderson, according to his report:

May 15—Check, Joseph Hirsch $25
May 15—Check, Anonymous $30
May 16—Check, Anonymous $5
May 16—Check, Anonymous $1
May 17—Check, not authorized to give name $1
May 17—Check, not authorized to give name $1
May 17—Check, not authorized to give name $25
May 17—Check, not authorized to give name $5
May 23—Check, not authorized to give name $1
May 26—Check, not authorized to give name $5
May 26—Check, not authorized to give name $3

Along with Mr. Anderson’s itemized account of the funds, Mr. Felder makes the following statement, which he addresses to the public:

“Mr. Charles I. Ryan, who was designated as custodian of the fund without his knowledge or consent, informs me that he has already returned to the contributors whatever money was paid in to him.”

“The Atlanta Journal, The Atlanta Constitution and The Atlanta Georgian subscribed $100 each, and I am informed that certain subscriptions were made to them. They have not been paid in and are not expected, and the three newspapers are hereby requested to return to the contributors any sums that they have received.”

“In addition to the above and foregoing, permit me to say in conclusion that additional sums aggregating several hundred dollars were subscribed by the public, but were not paid, and payment has not been and will not be requested.”

Mr. Felder further stated that he would ask the Bar Association to pass upon the regularity of his employment in the Phagan case and make a report upon it. He also declared his connection with the controversy as ended.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, June 11th, 1913, “Felder Returns Phagan Fund to Givers,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

T. B. Felder Accounts for Subscriptions Received

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

The Atlanta Journal

June 11, 1913

 Says Only $102 Was Paid Into Fund to Employ Burns Detectives

Attorney Thomas B. Felder Wednesday morning issued a card to the public in which he accounts for the funds subscribed to employ the Burns detectives to work upon the Phagan murder case. He reports that but $102 was collected.

Mr. Felder announces that all subscriptions paid in have been returned to the subscribers and that those who have subscribed but have not yet paid are not expected to do […] submits a letter and detailed statement from C. N. Anderson, the treasurer of his law firm, in which it is stated that the expenses incident to the employment of the Burns detectives have been charged to Mr. Felder’s personal account.

In conclusion Mr. Felder says that his connection with the controversy is ended and that he will in due season ask a committee from the bar association to pass upon the regularity of his employment in the Phagan case.


Following is Mr. Felder’s card:

“To the Public:

“I beg to submit a statement of receipts and disbursements in connection with your contributions to the fund that it was proposed to raise for the employment of the Burns agency to investigate the murder of Mary Phagan:

Continue Reading →

Challenges Felder to Prove His Charge

challenges-felder-to-proveAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, June 5th, 1913

Attorney Reiterates Graft Accusations Following Lanford’s Defiance—Offers More Proof.

Newport A. Lanford, Chief of Detectives, issued a statement Thursday morning defying Colonel Thomas B. Felder, or anyone, to substantiate the charge of graft made against him and his department in the Grand Jury’s probe of vice conditions and alleged corruption in the detective and police departments.

“I defy Felder, or anyone, to prove to the Grand Jury that a penny of graft has ever gone into the detective department, and I defy him to substantiate one of his blackmailing utterances against me. He can’t do it, and he knows he can’t.”

Colonel Felder, in turn, reiterated Thursday morning every charge of corruption he has made against Chief Lanford and his detectives. He said he had presented a great amount of evidence along this line to the Grand Jury and was in readiness to present more when that body called him at its session to-day.

“Opens Grand Jury’s Eyes.”

“I have given the Grand Jury a great number of facts in this matter and I think they are beginning to see things about like a great many people in Atlanta see them.”

“In next Sunday’s issues of the Atlanta papers I will issue a statement setting forth in full the foundation for every statement I have made and showing the people how corrupt their Chief of Detectives really is. I will not comment here on how great a failure he is as a detective. When William J. Burns reads of some of his marvelous deductions in the Phagan case, the great detective will bow his head in shame and pronounce himself a timid amateur. Continue Reading →

Burns Joins in Hunt for Phagan Slayer

Burn Joins in Hunt for Phagan Slayer

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

Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, May 29th, 1913

All Evidence Gathered by His Operatives Sent to the Noted Detective.

James Conley, the negro sweeper at the National Pencil Factory who has turned suspicion on himself with a maze of contradictory statements, was put through a gruelling third degree examination at police headquarters this afternoon. Pinkerton Detective Harry Scott said as the grilling began before Chief Beavers and Chief Lanford that he expected to glean important information. Scott had interviewed factory employees and was convinced that there were many things to be cleared up before the negro’s second affidavit, on which the police rely so much, could be accepted.

With the maze of contradictory statements sweeping an avalanche of suspicion upon the head of James Conley, the negro sweeper, the potent information was unearthed Thursday that Detective William J. Burns personally will take charge of the investigation into the Mary Phagan murder case which his operatives have been conducting.

Despite the published report that Burns operatives had withdrawn from the case, and despite the procedure of the State in prosecuting its case against Leo M. Frank, the pencil factory superintendent, the Burns investigation will continue and from now on be under the famous detective’s direction.

This information came from Detective C. W. Tobie, William J. Burns’ lieutenant, Thursday morning. It tends to show that Tobie, who has had charge of his agency’s investigation here, does not consider the case as closed.

Mr. Tobie went so far as to deny emphatically the published interview with him, in which he was quoted as declaring Frank to be the guilty man. Continue Reading →

A. S. Colyar Released From Bond on Thursday

AS Colyar ReleasedAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Journal

Thursday, May 29th, 1913

Tennessee Authorities Failed to Forward Requisition Papers on Date Agreed

A. S. Colyar, the Tennessean, who figured conspicuously in the recent dictograph sensation involving bribery charges and countercharges of graft between Colonel Thomas B. Felder, Mayor Woodward and others, on the one hand and Chief of Police Beavers and Chief of Detectives aLnford [sic], on the other was released from his bond Thursday at 2 p. m. by Chief Beavers.

Colyar’s name jumped into the news when the dictograph matter became public and the following day there came a wire from the Knoxville police to the Atlanta police, asking that Colyar be arrested and held for them. They charged an indictment for forgery. Accordingly, Colyar was arrested. He said the charge was four years old and had never been prosecuted. He alleged a conspiracy.

A few hours later, Colyar was released on bond.

Thursday was the day set by the Tennessee police for the delivery of requisition papers and the extradition of Colyar to Tennessee.

No documents came, but instead Chief Beavers received a letter from the Knoxville chief of police requesting that Colyar be held until June 3.

Chief Beavers declined to accede to this. His reply to the Knoxville chief was quoted by him to be that immediate action would have to be taken on Thursday or he would order the release of Colyar and his bondsmen. Continue Reading →

Burns Man Quits Case; Declares He Is Opposed

Burns Man Quits

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

Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, May 27th, 1913

C. W. Tobie, chief criminal investigator for the Burns Detective Agency, formally withdrew from the Phagan investigation Tuesday morning. The calling off of the Burns forces was announced by Dan P. Lehon, superintendent of the Southern branch, after Tobie had stated explicitly that he would not withdraw from the case.

Colonel Thomas B. Felder, who brought the Burns detectives into the Phagan case, would make no statement relative to their withdrawal but announced that it did not mean the end of his investigation or connection with the case.

Tobie made up his mind last Friday to drop the Mary Phagan investigation so he said Tuesday—but deferred action until, Monday night, when he announced his intention to withdraw to Solicitor General Dorsey.

Disgusted With “Fuss.”

Acute disgust at the “four or five cornered fuss” raised by the Phagan investigation was assigned by Tobie as the cause. This disgust was superinduced by the direct charge and general impression that the Burns Agency was pretending to ferret out the Phagan case, when in reality its purpose in Atlanta was to investigate the police department.

Tobie said to-day that while he has quit and was going to leave Atlanta, still the withdrawal of the Burns Agency need not be permanent. Continue Reading →

Burns Agency Quits the Phagan Case; Tobie Leaves Today

Burns Agency Quits

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

Atlanta Constitution

Tuesday, May 27th, 1913

Dan P. Lehon Holds Conference With Solicitor General Hugh Dorsey and Other Officials and Then Makes Announcement of Severance of Connection With Case.


“One of the Girls” in the Pencil Factory Brings Statement to The Constitution Defending the Character of Employees — Bribery Attempts Are Denied.

As a startling climax to the sensational turn of affairs in the Mary Phagan murder investigation, it was announced yesterday by Dan P. Lehon, superintendent of the Burns southern offices, that his agency had retired from the investigation of the Atlanta mystery.

The announcement was made after a conference he held for several hours with Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey and other officials promoting the investigation. C. W. Tobie, chief of the Burns criminal department, who has been in command of the Burns men at work on the case, leaves for Chicago this morning.

Tobie Makes Statement.

Tobie was seen last night by a reporter for The Constitution in his apartments at the Piedmont hotel. He was preparing to leave the city, but spared time to give the newspaper man a statement regarding the departure of the Burns forces and their attitude in the Mary Phagan case. General Superintendent Lehon, he said, left Atlanta Monday afternoon.

“The connection of the William J. Burns agency with the Phagan case,” he told the reporter, “is now severed entirely. We have nothing whatever to do with the investigation. When these bribery charges were published I immediately notified Dan Lehon, general superintendent of the southern branches of our organization.

“He came to Atlanta Monday morning. After he and I had conferred and he had talked with the solicitor general and other officials interested in the case, his decision was to drop operations and return to Chicago. I will probably leave tomorrow or the following day—just as soon as matters can be satisfactorily arranged.” Continue Reading →

Tobie Tried to Kidnap Incubator Baby, Says Topeka Police Official

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

Atlanta Journal

Monday, May 26th, 1913

That the past career and record of C. W. Tobie, the Burns investigator who came to Atlanta to probe the Phagan mystery for Colonel Thomas B. Felder, is being investigated by the local police is shown by a telegram received by Chief of Police J. L. Beavers Monday morning.

The telegram was from the chief of police of Topeka, Kan., and reads as follows:

“Tobie tried to kidnap incubator baby at Sedan, Kan., but failed, being employed by Detective Tillotson. Subsequently Tillotson kidnaped the child at Topeka and was convicted, but Tobie was not connected with Topeka kidnaping.

“J. W. F. HNGHES [sic],

“Chief of Police, Topeka, Kan.”

Efforts were made to reach Tobie by The Journal Monday, but the detective was not at his hotel.

* * *

Atlanta Journal, May 26th 1913, “Tobie Tried to Kidnap Incubator Baby, Says Topeka Police Official,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Thomas Felder Brands the Charges of Bribery Diabolical Conspiracy

Thomas Felder Brands

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

Atlanta Constitution

Sunday, May 25th, 1913

Thomas B. Felder, the Atlanta lawyer who is accused of having offered a bribe for an affidavit of J. W. Coleman, stepfather of Mary Phagan, now in the possession of the police, yesterday issued the following statement: To the People of Atlanta:

The publication of the sensational “story” in The Atlanta Journal on yesterday afternoon relating to myself and my connection with the Phagan case is but the symptom or manifestation of one of the most diabolical conspiracies ever hatched by a venal and corrupt “system” to protect crime in a civilized community.

To be more specific, this conspiracy was formed just after the arrest of Newt Lee and Leo Frank, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan. The controlling genius of it is Newport Lanford, chief of the city detectives; its object is to shield and protect the murderers of this innocent child, and in its wicked ramifications it marks our distinguished (?) chief of detectives as the Lieutenant Becker of our “system,” and renders his co-conspirators as dangerous to the lives, liberty and property and reputation of our citizens as the bloody and deadly Society of the Mafia.

Part Played By Papers.

Pity it is that the press of the city has been and is being made the innocent, if effective, instrument in their hands to further and effectuate the object of this wicked conspiracy by prostituting their potential columns in the exploitation of the mass of forgeries and perjuries which has been given to the public through their columns, for be it known that these papers have tacitly sanctioned the utterances of Colyar by reproducing his affidavits in the face of the fact that the editors and proprietors of all would without hesitation swear that they would not believe him on oath if called upon to do so. Strangely enough, a portion of the criminal record of this man Colyar is reproduced, showing him to be a man steeped in crime and infamy, while in the parallel column is published his defamatory utterances against me. Continue Reading →

C. W. Tobie, Burns’ Agent, Tells of the Conferences He Held With A. S. Colyar

CW Tobie

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

Atlanta Constitution

Sunday, May 25th, 1913

following affidavit concerning his connection with the Phagan case and with A. S. Colyar.

Georgia, Fulton County—Personally appeared before the undersigned, an officer authorized by law to administer oaths, C. W. Tobie, who, first, being duly sworn, deposes and says:

That he is a citizen of Chicago, with offices in the First National Bank building of that city, and that he is manager of the criminal department, west, of the William J. Burns National Detective agency; that he has occupied this position for the past ten months; that he has been connected with the William J. Burns National Detective agency, as manager of the Kansas City, Mo., branch office, since May, 1910; that for a year prior to that time he was connected with the Tilletson Detective agency, correspondents of the William J. Burns National Detective agency; that prior to that time deponent was connected with the Pinkerton National Detective agency for a period of nine years; that he severed his connection with the Pinkerton National Detective agency in May, 1909.

Charge Is False.

Deponent says, on oath, that the statement that he was discharged by said agency is utterly, absolutely and deliberately false; that he resigned from said agency, and not under compulsion, but of his own volition. Continue Reading →

Here Are Affidavits Submitted by Col. Felder

Here are Affidavits

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

Atlanta Journal

Sunday, May 25th, 1913

Following are five affidavits submitted to the newspapers by Colonel Thomas B. Felder, of Atlanta, for publication with his statement answering the dictograph quotations.

First appears the affidavit of C. W. Tobie, representative of the Burns detective agency investigating the murder of Mary Phagan. Second is that of W. A. Milner, an attorney of Cartersville. Third, comes that of W. D. Rhea, formerly of Nashville. Fourth, is the deposition of C. R. Atchison, formerly of Nashville. And fifth, comes the affidavit of E. W. McNeal, formerly of Nashville.

Following is Mr. Tobie’s affidavit:

MR. TOBIE’S AFFIDAVIT. Continue Reading →

“Lanford is the Controlling Genius of Conspiracy to Protect the Murderer of Little Mary Phagan”

Thomas B. Felder

Thomas B. Felder

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

Atlanta Journal

Sunday, May 25th, 1913

So Declares Colonel Thomas B. Felder in Scathing Arraignment of Chief of Detectives and Those Assisting Him. Says Lanford and the Pinkerton Detectives Are Doing All They Can to Hamper the Phagan Investigation — Refers to Lanford as the “Lieutenant Becker” of the Department


Colonel Felder Says He Met Colyar Two and a Half Years Ago. During His Controversy With Governor Blease, and That Colyar Palmed Off Forged Affidavits on Him — Declares Colyar Came to Him With Tales of Corruption in Police Department and Asked for $1,000 for His Information

Charging Atlanta police officials with a conspiracy to shield and protect the murderers of Mary Phagan and styling Chief Newport Lanford as “the Lieutenant Becker of Atlanta and controlling genius” of the plot, Colonel Thomas B. Felder late Saturday gave out an emphatic statement vehemently denying the attempted bribery and other charges hurled at him by the police in the now famous dictograph records.

That a dictograph was used Colonel Felder doubts, and if one was used in the Williams house, he asserts, the record was changed by the persons using the record. This he tends to establish by showing that the record quotes him now in the first person singular and again in the second person singular. The record, he asserts, was “framed.”

Colonel Felder asserts that the plot was hatched with the day Leo M. Frank was arrested and maintains that since that time the police have done nothing else save protect the two suspects and obstruct the work of the Burns agency and Solicitor Dorsey.

He attacks A. S. Colyar in a half dozen affidavits appended to his lengthy statement. Colyar, he says, is morally and mentally irresponsible and merely a tool in the hands of Lanford and his agents.

He charges that the Coleman affidavit, imputed by the police to be a repudiation of Felder’s connection with the Phagan investigation, was obtained from J. W. Coleman under pressure.

The police plot, he charges, involves the [P]Inkertons and was organized by Chief Lanford and the Atlanta operatives for the Pinkertons employed the day after the Phagan murder by the National Pencil company.


The statement given out by Colonel Felder, as he had announced Friday, constitutes a narrative of the events leading up to the conferences in Williams House No. 2, where the dictograph was operated by Colyar and G. C. Febuary. Continue Reading →

Frame-Up Aimed at Burns’ Men, Says Tobie

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

Atlanta Georgian

Saturday, May 24th, 1913

Denouncing A. S. Colyar as an “eagle-beaked crook,” W. C. Tobie, the Burns detective who is here making an investigation of the Phagan case, declared on Saturday that the charges of bribery and double-dealing brought against Felder were a frame-up concocted by the Pinkerton Detective Agency and the Atlanta Police Department, with these three ends in view:

To discredit the Burns Agency.

To drive the Burns Agency from the State of Georgia.

To discredit Colonel Felder because he employed Burns men.

Tobie charges also that Colyar was used as the “capper” in the frame-up. He declares that Colyar tried to induce him to be a party to a fake frame-up on the Police Department and the Pinkertons, and that Colyar invited him to attend the conference at the Williams House No. 2 between Colonel Felder, G. C. February [sic] and Colyar. He declares that Colyar told him he had affidavits that proved crookedness and graft in the Police Department and that he heard Colyar, on last Sunday, offer to sell the evidence to Colonel Felder for a stipulated sum. He declares also that Colyar said he wanted to get even with the police because they had arrested him once.

Tobie’s Complete Statement.

Mr. Tobie’s complete statement, in which he outlines the position of the Burns Agency in the squabble, follows: Continue Reading →

Felder Charges Police Plot to Shield Slayer

G. C. Febuary Lanford's clerk, who alleges bribery offer; Febuary alleges that Felder offered $1,000 for police records. He is a modest, unassuming young man, in whom Lanford and Beavers have complete confidence.

G. C. Febuary Lanford’s clerk, who alleges bribery offer; Febuary alleges that Felder offered $1,000 for police records. He is a modest, unassuming young man, in whom Lanford and Beavers have complete confidence.

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

Atlanta Georgian

Saturday, May 24th, 1913

Colonel Thomas B. Felder entered into an explicit and detailed denial to The Georgian of all the charges of attempted bribery contained in the affidavits signed by G. C. Febuary, secretary to Chief of Detectives Lanford, and A. S. Colyar, a private detective with spectacular career.

Colonel Felder declared the alleged dictograph record of conversation he is alleged to have had with Colyar and Febuary in Williams House No. 2 a “frame-up” and a fabrication.

The report that he had offered $1,000 for the Coleman affidavit in the Phagan case and affidavits said to indicate graft in the Police Department he branded as absolutely false.

The whole plot had been concocted, he said, to discredit himself and W. J. Burns and drive them from the Phagan case so the guilty person might be protected.

“Every move made by the police in the Phagan case has been for the protection of the real criminal,” said Colonel Felder. “The police have kept an innocent negro there in a cell for three weeks in the hope that they can crush a confession out of him and let the real culprit go free.

“Guilty Person Protected.”

“If the desire were not to protect the guilty person, why should they desire to eliminate Burns and myself? Burns has a reputation for landing every criminal he goes after. He has a reputation for being absolutely merciless in the manner he hunts down his man. It is as certain as anything can be in the detection of criminals that he will be successful, once he gets started on a case. He is known to be unpurchasable. Everybody knows that he could have accepted a million dollars at any time during the chase for the McNamara brothers if he had been willing to say that he had not been able to find the dynamiters. Continue Reading →

Grand Jury Won’t Hear Leo Frank or Lee

Grand Jury Won't Hear

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

Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, May 22nd, 1913

Understood That Cases Will Be Brought Separately, With One Accused as Accomplice.

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey announced Thursday afternoon that he was prepared to go before the Grand Jury Friday morning with his strongest evidence in the case of Leo M. Frank and Newt Lee, held in connection with the murder of Mary Phagan.

Although Mr. Dorsey would not discuss the form in which the cases would be presented, it was reliably stated they would be heard separately and the charge against one would be that he was an accessory to the fact.

Neither of the defendants will go before the jury. Mr. Dorsey said that in the event any move was made to introduce evidence for the defense he was prepared to block it. He said he had looked up Supreme Court decisions on this question, because when the Grand Jury was asked to indict Dr. W. H. Gillem for beating W. H. Johnson the jury in his absence had allowed Dr. Gillem to come before it, which, he said, was contrary to all law.

Twelve to Govern Action.

The opinion of 12 of the 21 jurymen will govern the action of the body. There can be no minority, said the Solicitor. If 12 of the men indict or decline to indict, the other jurors have to sign the “true” or “no bill” with the 12. Eighteen of the 21 constitute a quorum. Continue Reading →

Experts Are Here on Finger Prints

Experts Here

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

Atlanta Constitution

Thursday, May 22nd, 1913

Two Investigators Are Added to Wm. J. Burns’ Forces Already in Atlanta—P. A. Flak in City.

The William J. Burns forces in the investigation of the Mary Phagan mystery have been reinforced by two expert investigators who recently arrived in the city and are assisting Chief C. W. Tobie in his work.

Their identity is being withheld. Both began work Wednesday. One is a noted handwriting and finger print expert, and his first object was to examine the notes found beside the girl’s body and to obtain finger prints at and around the scene of discovery.

Chief Tobie visited the negro night watchman, Newt Lee, in the Tower Wednesday morning for an hours’ interview. Although he will not state positively his views, the impression is gained that he believes the negro innocent, in both the actual murder and as an accessory either before or after the crime.

Finger Print Expert Engaged.

P. A. Flak, one of New York’s most successful finger print experts, has been retained by Solicitor General Dorsey to examine prints found upon the victim’s clothing and on the notes written by her slayer. Flak was brought to Atlanta by the Georgia State Banker’ association, the convention of which recently was held in Macon.

He and the solicitor visited the pencil factory Wednesday afternoon. Later they visited the jail, where, it is said, they secured finger prints from both suspects, Frank, the plant superintendent, and the negro watchman. They spent practically the entire day together. Continue Reading →

Women Declare Phagan Murder Must Be Solved

Women Declare

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

Atlanta Constitution

Tuesday, May 20th, 1913

“Freedom of Murderer Is a Menace to Honor and Life of Every Woman,” Writes Mrs. James Carr.

Optimistic over the prospects for solving the Mary Phagan mystery, C. W. Tobie, chief of the William J. Burns criminal department, told a reporter for The Constitution yesterday morning that he was confident the girl’s murderer would be apprehended and convicted in a surprisingly short while.

“What if Mary Phagan were your child?” is the subject of an eloquent plea made to the women of Atlanta by Mrs. Jane F. Carr for the apprehension of the slyer. Women of all walks of life and classes are uniting in one combined effort to assist in investigation.

Mrs. Carr’s plea is an apt illustration of the widespread sentiment felt by the women of the city. It will be recalled that six prominent women advanced the suggestion to Attorney Felder that Detective Burns be employed, and the fund was started by The Constitution. Women’s clubs and organizations all over Georgia are ready and willing to lead every aid possible.

Women Are Interested.

Mrs. Carr’s letter follows: Continue Reading →

Cases Ready Against Lee and Leo Frank

Cases Ready

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

Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, May 20th, 1913

Solicitor General Dorsey Declares All Evidence Will Go to the Grand Jury Friday.

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey announced Tuesday morning that the State’s case against Leo M. Frank and Newt Lee in connection with the Phagan murder, would go to the Grand Jury Friday of this week. He said that he could anticipate no new arrest or development that would make it necessary to change this plan.

Mrs. Jane F. Carr, 251 Ponce De-Leon Avenue, in an open letter, asked every woman in Atlanta to contribute to the fund to employ the Burns detective and Mr. Burns himself to work in the Phagan investigation. She appealed to women of every walk in life to give according to their means.

“What if Mary Phagan were your child?” was the subject of her letter.

Felder Asks for Funds.

The Burns fund, after going above the $2,000 mark, slacked considerably. Colonel Thomas B. Felder said this sum would not sufficient if it became necessary for the Burns men to make an exhaustive investigation, and asked the people to contribute liberally to the end that Atlanta’s greatest mystery be satisfactorily cleared. Continue Reading →

Burns Eager to Solve Phagan Case

Burns Eager to Solve

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

Atlanta Georgian

Monday, May 19th, 1913

Famous Detective Expected to Arrive From Europe and Start Work Before June 1.


Important Revelation Looked For To-day—Search Being Pushed With Renewed Vigor.

Colonel Thomas B. Felder announced Monday morning that he had received word from William J. Burns that he would arrive in America before June 1 and would probably be on the scene of the Phagan slaying before that date.

Colonel Felder said the great detective had taken an unusual interest in the Phagan mystery and he would not be surprised to hear from him in America any day soon.

“Burns is more interested in this case than I have known him to be in another,” said Colonel Felder. “I am advised that he will hasten his return from Europe on this account and be in America some days before June 1. He will, of course, come direct to Atlanta.

“The meantime developments since his investigator has been here are more than satisfactory. The Burns detective convinced Mr. Dorsey Sunday afternoon that he had touched upon heretofore overlooked evidence of importance, and in his report today we expect valuable information.”

Search Grows More Active.

With investigation into the mystery more active Monday than it has been at any time during the last two weeks, the Solicitor was hopeful that important developments would be made during the day. Continue Reading →