Dorsey Pleased With Progress

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 3rd, 1913

Solicitor Will Put Dr. Roy Harris on the Stand Again on Next Tuesday Afternoon.

While Solicitor Hugh M. Dorsey declined to make an expression of what he believed would be the outcome of the case against Leo M. Frank, which he has been prosecuting all the week, he expressed himself yesterday afternoon as thoroughly satisfied with the present progress.

The solicitor held an extended conference immediately after court adjourned with his assistant, E. A. Stephens, and with Attorney Frank A. Hooper, who is aiding him, and together with the lawyers went over what had been done and mapped out their program for the coming week.

With the attorneys were detectives J. N. Starnes and Pat Campbell and others who have assisted in getting up the evidence and working the preparation of the case.

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Fixing Hour of Girl’s Death Through Aid of Modern Science The Prosecution’s Greatest Aid

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 3rd, 1913

By Britt Craig.

When Mrs. J. W. Coleman, mother of Mary Phagan, related a simple story on the witness stand the first day of the Frank trial of the slain child’s frugal meal of cabbage and biscuit which she ate upon leaving home that fateful day, she paved the way for the most thrilling development thus far in the entire case.

Her story was as devoid of thrills as any yet told. It was an ordinary recitation of a common meal and told in the mother’s plain, simple manner. Had she not broke into tears her connection would have been completely devoid of interest, except for the fact that she was Mary Phagan’s mother.

But her statement of the meal the murdered child had eaten, prepared an opening for the startling testimony of Dr. Roy F. Harris, the state chemist, who testified that the cabbage found in the stomach, and which Mrs. Coleman stated the child had eaten at the noon meal, indicated that she had met her death within 45 minutes after eating.

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State’s Case Against Frank As It Stands After Week’s Testimony Is Shown Here

Photo-diagram of court room in old city hall building, where Leo M. Frank, superintendent of the National Pencil factory, is on trial for his life charged with the murder of Mary Phagan. Although the available seats are taken soon after court convenes, the crowd waits without all day for some weary spectator to give up a seat. On the second floor the many witnesses await their turn for a grueling examination by attorneys on either side.

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

Atlanta Journal
August 3rd, 1913

Most Important Points State Sought to Prove Are That Mary Phagan Was Killed Shortly After Entering Factory—That Crime Was on Second Floor, and That Frank Was Not in His Office at the Time He Saw He Gave Her the Pay Envelope

An entire week has been given over to the trial of Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of Mary Phagan, and so far the state has not shown or attempted to show any direct connection on the part of the defendant with the crime. Solicitor Dorsey has worked systematically to weave a chain of circumstantial evidence about Frank.

Those who have watched the progress of the trial day by day are impressed with the fact that he has endeavored by the introduction of circumstantial evidence to pave the way for the testimony of James Conley, the negro sweeper, who will be the climax witness for the state and upon whose evidence the case against Frank will largely stand or fall.

The state swore but twenty-six witnesses when the trial began Monday afternoon, but up to date it has called thirty and the indications are that still others are to be put upon the stand. The defense has not put up a single witness and can not do so until the state rests its case. However, Attorneys Rosser and Arnold, counsel for Frank, have administered severe cross-examinations to the more material of the state’s witnesses and in many instances have succeeded in minimizing the evidence given by them on their direct examination.

The state has sought to show by its witnesses:

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Defense Will Introduce Witnesses

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

Atlanta Journal
August 3rd, 1913

FRANK TRIAL WILL RUN INTO THIRD WEEK; DEFENSE WILL BEGIN TESTIMONY WEDNESDAY

Indications Saturday, When Court Adjourned Until Monday Morning at 9 o’Clock, Were That State Would Require at Least Two More Days Before Concluding Presentation of Its Case Against the Factory Superintendent

DEFENSE’S DECISION TO INTRODUCE EVIDENCE MEANS THAT THE TRIAL IS NOT YET HALF OVER

Dr. H. F. Harris Will Take the Stand Again Monday Afternoon and Will Probably Be Under Cross-Examination for Several Hours—Conley Will Be State’s Last Witness, and a Big Battle Will Rage Around His Testimony

IT’S TERRIBLE FOR AN INNOCENT MAN TO BE CHARGED WITH CRIME” Leo M. Frank.

Leo M. Frank is apparently standing the strain of the tedious trial remarkably well, and the expression of his face seldom changes during the introduction of evidence. According to his jailers he still sleeps soundly every night, and he has never lost his appetite.

Few people have ever discussed the actual evidence in the case with him, and no expression of an opinion from him about the case, which the state has put up against him, has reached the public.

Frank is quoted as having made only this comment before Saturday’s session started: “It is terrible for an innocent man to be charged with a most damnable crime. Even if he is cleared he can never get over the fact that he was charged and tried for the crime.”

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey admits that he was practically completed his “circumstantial” case against Leo M. Frank, although the state has several witnesses who will be put on the stand this week before the state’s case is concluded.

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Startling Statements Made During Testimony of Dr. Harris

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 2nd, 1913

Making the startling declaration that Mary Phagan had been killed within thirty or forty-five minutes after she had eaten dinner, Dr. Roy F. Harris, state chemist, took the stand during the afternoon session yesterday.

It was Dr. Harris who made the autopsy upon the body when it was disinterred in Marietta on May 5. He brought with him into court specimens of predigested cabbage which had been removed from the slain girl’s stomach.

He also testified to the effect that the girl had suffered violence before death and recited the condition in which he had found blood vessels and tissues of the girl’s organs.

He was questioned first by Solicitor Dorsey.

“What is your occupation?”

“I am a physician.”

“How long have you been a physician?”

“Since 1889.”

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Mary Phagan Murdered Within Hour After Dinner

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 2nd, 1913

DR. H. F. HARRIS GIVES STARTLING EVIDENCE ABOUT TIME OF MURDER

Wound on Eye of Girl Victim of Pencil Factory Crime Looked as if It Came From Blow of Fist, Secretary of State Board of Health Tells the Jurymen.

WHILE ON THE STAND DR. HARRIS COLLAPSES FROM RECENT ILLNESS

Frequent Clashes Take Place During Testimony of N. V. Darley, Assistant Superintendent of National Pencil Factory, Over the Alleged Nervousness of Frank.

Within three-quarters of an hour after she had eaten her frugal breakfast of cabbage and bread, Mary Phagan was dead.

This startling fact was brought out at Friday’s session of the Leo M. Frank trial, when Dr. Roy Harris, secretary of the state board of health, took the stand to tell of the post-mortem examination he performed on the body of the child.

The time of the murder has always been a mooted question. When Dr. Harris made his declaration and exhibited a small bottle containing particles of cabbage, which had been taken from the stomach and which had not had time to digest, a thrill went through the court room.

Crowd on the Qui Vive.

As soon as Dr. Harris entered the court room during the afternoon session, the crowd seemed to sense the dramatic situation which was to follow.

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Dr. Harris Collapses on Stand as He Gives Sensational Evidence

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

Atlanta Journal
August 2nd, 1913

Physician Testifies at Frank Trial That Mary Phagan Met Death Half Hour After Lunch—Describes Wounds

Secretary of State Board of Health Compelled to Leave the Witness Stand on Account of Illness

In the midst of sensational testimony, Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the state board of health, collapsed Friday afternoon on the witness stand and was excused until Saturday. Dr. Harris and just testified that his examination of the contents of the stomach of little Mary Phagan showed that the dinner which she had eaten before leaving home was still undigested, and he therefore concluded that he little girl was killed within thirty minutes or three-quarters of an hour after she had eaten. Part of the undigested food taken from the stomach was exhibited in the court room. It had been preserved in alcohol.

Dr. Harris testified that there was no evidence of an assault but there were indications of some kind of violence having been committed. He thought this violence had preceded her death five or ten minutes.

Before he finished his testimony Dr. Harris became suddenly ill, his voice became faint and he begged to be excused. He promised to return Saturday, if possible. He said he had gotten up from a sick bed to come to court. He was assisted from the court room.

Also featuring the opening of the Phagan, was the testimony given by N. afternoon session of the trial of Leo M. Frank charged with the murder of Mary V. Darley under cross-examination of Attorney Reuben R. Arnold, for the defense.

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Harris Testimony May Be Stricken by Court

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

Atlanta Journal
August 2nd, 1913

Question Will Be Solved by Physician’s Recovery and Return to Stand

If Dr. H. F. Harris, secretary of the state board of health, is not physically able to be presented in the court room before the state closes its case, will his testimony be stricken from the record?

This question came for informed discussion at the court house Saturday. Dr. Harris was suddenly attacked with illness while in the middle of his direct examination and had to be assisted from the witness stand. The defense attorneys, therefore, had no opportunity to cross-question him.

Solicitor Dorsey, when asked if the testimony would be withdrawn said that he did not know.

“It would be a question for debate,” he said.

Another prominent local attorney not connected with the case gave as his off-hand opinion that the testimony could not be erased from the records. He also pointed out that, with the permission of the court, Solicitor Dorsey could recall Mr. Harris to the stand to complete his direct examination and for the cross-examination of the defense any time before the final arguments to the jury begin.

At the residence of Dr. Harris, 52 Ponce de Leon avenue, it was Saturday afternoon that the doctor was improved today and expected to be ready to go on the stand Monday morning. He was confined to his bed during the morning and early afternoon, but shortly after 1 o’clock arose with the remark that he was feeling better.

In the event that Dr. Harris’ health will permit him to come to court Monday morning he probably will precede James Conley, negro sweeper, on the stand.

State Hopes Dr. Harris Fixed Fact That Frank Had Chance to Kill Girl

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 2nd, 1913

By JAMES B. NEVIN.

The testimony of Dr. Roy Harris, chairman of the State Board of Health, and one of the most learned and approved physicians in Georgia, was dramatic, both in its substance and in the manner of its delivery Friday.

It was not calculated to help Leo Frank—and it did not.

The exhibition of a portion of the contents of the dead girl’s stomach, for the purpose of approximating the time of her death, held breathless the packed courthouse—and the fainting of the physician during the progress of his testimony gave a final touch of melodrama to the trial that thrilled the audience as nothing else has thus far.

Dr. Harris impressed me, too, as believing in Frank’s guilt—I do not know that he does believe that way, it merely happens that he seemed so to impress me.

And if he impressed that jury as he impressed me, then the things he testified may, if the remainder of the case against Frank holds together, prove eventually to be the defendant’s undoing.

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Will 5 Ounces of Cabbage Help Convict Leo M. Frank?

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 2nd, 1913

Are five and half ounces of cabbage to be the principal factor in sending a man to the gibbet?

If the prosecution is warranted in its belief in the vital and incriminating importance of the testimony of Dr. H. F. Harris, director of the State Board of Health, this is exactly the outcome to be expected in the trial of Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of little Mary Phagan.

It remains, however, for the State to show explicitly just how the sensational statements made last Friday afternoon by medical expert any more clearly connect Leo Frank with the terrible crime than they connect Jim Conley, the negro, who was skulking in the National Pencil Factory at the same time. The testimony of Mrs. Arthur White is relied upon to do that very thing.

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Victim of Murder Prepared to Die, Believes Dorsey

Victim of Murder Prepared

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

Atlanta Constitution

Thursday, May 15th, 1913

Identification Slip Carried by Mary Phagan in Her Pocketbook Causes Theory That the Victim Had Been Threatened With Violence.

Either threatened with death or warned by some dread premonition of an untimely end, Mary Phagan is believed by Solicitor Dorsey to have prepared for her tragic fate by writing the identification slip discovered hidden in a compartment of the metal pocketbook which she carried daily.

The slip was given the solicitor Wednesday morning by a reporter for The Constitution. The reporter also made an authorized statement of the source from which it was obtained. It was given him by J. W. Coleman, step-father of the girl victim.

The slip was written six days before the murder. Her parents have never known her to have possessed such an article. Its presence in her pocketbook is said by them to be as mysterious as her death. Mr. Dorsey values it highly.

Bases New Theory On the Slip.

On it he already has based a plausible theory. Members of his staff have been assigned to investigation of the motive which impelled the slain girl to strive so thoroughly, as she endeavored in the mysterious slip, to establish her identification in case of emergency. Continue Reading →

Caught Frank With Girl in Park, He Says

Caught Frank With Girl in Park

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

Atlanta Georgian

Sunday, May 11th, 1913

Robert T. House, a Special Policeman, Gives New Evidence to City Detectives.

In the evidence obtained Saturday in the Mary Phagan case, one piece that the detectives regard as the most important bore on Frank’s alleged conduct when he was in company with a young girl in Druid Hills Park.

The new evidence came from Robert F. House, a special policeman, who is in the employ of the Druid Hills Land Company. House declared that he had ejected a man from the park at one time from whom he obtained damaging admissions.

House visited the county jail and was taken to the cell of Frank. He identified Frank as the man whom he sent from the park. House told the officers that since reading of the Phagan murder he had recalled that the man he ejected from the park told him that he was superintendent of the National Pencil Company.

Came Frequently to Park.

The park guard related that the incident to which he referred occurred more than a year ago. He said that he had noticed the man come frequently to the park with the girl. When they appeared one afternoon shortly after 2 o’clock, he said he was determined to shadow them. He followed them and then suddenly surprised them by jumping into view. Continue Reading →

Guard of Secrecy is Thrown About Phagan Search by Solicitor

Guard of Secrecy is Thrown About Phagan Search by Solicitor

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

Atlanta Georgian

Saturday, May 10th, 1913

Names of Witnesses Withheld by Dorsey to Prevent “Manufacturers of Public Opinion” Getting in Touch with Them—Satisfied with Progress.

Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey declared Saturday afternoon that he was very well satisfied with the progress made in the investigation of the Phagan murder mystery and made the significant remark that he would not reveal the names of new witnesses so that manufacturers of public opinion could not get to them.

The Solicitor held a conference with Dr. H. F. Harris, of the State Board of Health, who examined the girl’s body. Dr. Harris said he would rush his report in time for presentation to the Grand Jury when that body takes up the mystery next week. The Solicitor would not reveal just what the physician has learned so far.

The examination of the bloodstained shirt in the back yard of Newt Lee’s home was also continued, and the Solicitor was far from convinced that its significance had been rightly determined.

Mr. Dorsey worked all day Saturday on the case and announced that he would continue all of Sunday so that he could present his evidence to the Grand Jury as early as possible next week.

Confers With City Sleuths

A conference was held with the city detectives, who are working in co-operation with the State, but none of the details could be learned. Strict secrecy is being maintained regarding new developments. Continue Reading →

Stains of Blood on Shirt Fresh, Says Dr. Smith

Stains of Blood on Shirt Fresh

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

Atlanta Constitution

Thursday, May 8th, 1913

City Bacteriologist Makes His Report After Examination of Garment of Negro Which Was Found in Trash Barrel.

LEE’S CELLMATE MAY TESTIFY AT INQUEST

Witness Spent 24 Hours in Same Cell With Phagan Prisoner — Body of Girl Exhumed for Second Time.

DAY’S DEVELOPMENTS IN PHAGAN MYSTERY

Dr. Claude Smith, city bacteriologist, completes examination of negro’s blood-stained shirt, and finds that the blood stains are new.

Body of Mary Phagan was exhumed shortly after noon on Wednesday for the purpose of making a second examination.

Mrs. Mattie Smith, wife of one of the mechanics who were last men to leave pencil factory, tells detectives that shortly before 1 o’clock, when she left the building, she saw strange negro near elevator.

Bill Bailey, negro convict who was placed in cell with Newt Lee for twenty-four hours, now at liberty, and will probably be called upon at inquest today to testify.

Leo Frank will be placed upon the stand again today at 9:30 o’clock, when the coroner’s inquest is resumed.

Solicitor General Hugh Dorsey holds a long conference in cell with Newt Lee, but declines to tell what passed.

Detectives announce they are searching for a Greek, who is now believed to be in Alabama.

Chief Lanford declares that somebody is blocking Phagan investigation, silencing witnesses, and “planting” evidence.

The report of Dr. Claude A. Smith’s analysis of the bloodstains on the shirt found in the home of Newt Lee, who is held in connection with the Mary Phagan murder, has been submitted to the detective department. It reveals that the stains were caused by human blood, not more than a month old. Continue Reading →

Stains on Shirt Were Not Made While Shirt Was Being Worn

Stains on Shirt Were Not Made While Shirt Was Being Worn

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

Atlanta Journal

Thursday, May 8th, 1913

A number of new witnesses had been summoned for the inquest, and the indications were said to be that the session (promised as final in the coroner’s investigation) might last all day.

It became known, before the inquest convened, that several witnesses whom the detectives have discovered would not be introduced there at all. The evidence that they can furnish, whatever it may be, will not become public until some later time, it was said.

It was stated further Thursday morning that the report by Dr. Claude A. Smith, city bacteriologist, upon the analysis by him of stains upon the shirt supposed to have been found at the house of Newt Lee, the negro, had been mailed to Chief of Police Beavers late Wednesday afternoon. The report set forth, it was said, that the stains are not old, and that probably they are stains of human blood. Continue Reading →

Employe of Lunch Stand Near Pencil Factory is Trailed to Alabama

Employe of Lunch Stand Near Pencil Factory isAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian

Wednesday, May 7th, 1913

Detectives Figure Strangling Was a Typical Mediterranean Crime—Solicitor Dorsey Grills Watchman Lee in Effort to Get New Points.

A new and sensational interpretation was given the Phagan mystery Wednesday afternoon when it was revealed that Pinkerton detectives are trailing a Greek now missing who was employed in a restaurant near the National Pencil factory before the crime was committed.

The reasons that the city detectives give for the adoption of the new theory are:

The slaying of Mary Phagan was not a negro crime, as the only negro who has been suspected in the case, Newt Lee, would have fled from the scene.

The notes which were left with the evident intention of diverting suspicion from the actual criminal were too subtle for Lee to have framed.

Strangulation, the method by which Mary Phagan was killed, is not a negro method of killing.

But this method is typical of the Mediterranean countries.

Working along these new lines, the detectives are of the opinion that the crime was not committed inside the National Pencil Factory. They believe that the girl was attacked outside the factory and that her body was taken inside with the intention of hiding it ultimately in the furnace, although the body never reached there. Continue Reading →

Phagan Girl’s Body Again Exhumed for Finger-Print Clews

Phagan Girl's Body Again Exhumed

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

Atlanta Georgian

Wednesday, May 7th, 1913

Third Time Unfortunate Victim’s Remains Have Been Exhumed—Dorsey Says Officials Are Not Looking for Finger Prints, but Other Clews.

The body of Mary Phagan was exhumed early Wednesday for the second time in two days.

The unofficial explanation is that the exhumation is made for the purpose of making a microscopic and minute examination of every wound on the body for finger prints and other clews as well.

Solicitor Dorsey let it be known that the police are not working on the idea that the finger prints would be helpful in solving the mystery, if indeed there are any finger prints to be found, as the body has been embalmed and has been handled by many persons since it was first discovered in the basement of the pencil factory.

Nevertheless, it may be safely said that a microscopital [sic] examination will be made of every mark on the body.

It was reported before the departure was made for Marietta that a Bertillon expert had been engaged and that if any finger prints were found, photographs would be taken and the most careful measurements made for the purpose of comparison. Continue Reading →