Dorsey Forces Childs to Admit Certain Portions of His Testimony Could Not Be Considered Expert

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 8, 1913

Dr. LeRoy W. Childs who was the first witness placed on the stand by the defense underwent a rigorous cross examination by Solicitor Dorsey.

The solicitor showed a keen knowledge of medicine and chemistry in the volley of questions he fired at the medical expert, and, upon one occasion elicited the admission from the witness that he was not informed of a certain phase of laboratory work on which great stress had been laid by Dr. Roy Harris who preceded Dr. Childs to the stand.

In concluding his testimony Dr. Childs when asked by the solicitor who explained the condition in which Mary Phagan’s body had been discovered declared that it was his opinion death did not result from the blow upon the head.

Dr. Childs was on the stand at the opening of the afternoon session under direct examination of Attorney Arnold.

“State whether or not doctor a bruise upon an eye can be inflicted after death?”

“Such a bruise could be produced before the body is cold. Some bodies retain heat longer than others.”

“Can a blow on the back of the head cause a black eye?”

“Such a blow could blacken both eyes.”

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Hugh Dorsey Wins His Spurs; Crowd Recognizes Gameness

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

By Sidney Ormond

When the spectators at the Frank trial Wednesday broke into a ripple of applause, after Judge Roan had announced his decision that the damaging evidence of Jim Conley that he had “watched out for Frank on several occasions prior to the murder and had encountered him in an attitude which set him apart from normal men would remain in the records—when this applause came—it was not that any man contributing to it necessarily thought Frank guilty. It was simply a spontaneous tribute to Solicitor Hugh Dorsey who has fought so doggedly against such enormous odds to get before the jury a mass of evidence which, woven together, forms the whole fabric of the state’s case. The applause was a recognition of the ability of a young man who, say what you will of the guilt or the innocence of Leo M. Frank, has demonstrated that he is an an agonist of whom any man need feel fear.

The applause was simply an expression of the desire of the average person for fair play. Feeling for or against Frank seemed to be suspended. It was, more than anything else, an expression of approval for work well done by a young man who was passing through a strenuous ordeal. Interest in the actual evidence in question and its possible effect on the fate of the defendant seemed to be set aside for just the brief interval that it took for the clapping of hands.

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Applause Sweeps Courtroom When Dorsey Scores a Point

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

Following Conley’s departure from the stand the jury was allowed a five minute recess and on their return Solicitor Dorsey tendered in evidence a picture of the pencil factory basement which was taken by Francis B. Price, The Constitution staff photographer on the morning that the body was found a [1 word illegible] of which appeared in The Constitution. He also tendered a scratch pad sample of one of those around the factory the murder notes and the pad found near the body.

There were no objections from the defense.

“Bring in C. B. Dalton,” called out the solicitor. Dalton is the man named by Conley as having gone into the factory with Frank when the latter chatted with women and had Conley act as lookout. Dalton took his place on the stand but was excused because the judge had not made his final decision with reference to the protested Conley testimony and Mrs. John Arthur White was called in.

Conley was brought back and Mrs. White was asked if he was the negro she claimed to have seen on April 26 concealed behind some boxes on the first floor of the factory.

She could not say that he was or was not but declared that he looked more like the man than anyone else she had seen and that he was about the same statue. The defense entered frequent objections while this was being brought out.

“Mrs. White,” the solicitor then asked, “on April 28 didn’t you tell your brother Wade Campbell, an employee of the pencil company that you had seen a negro there on the previous Saturday?”

Mr. Rosser objected.

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Unable to Shake Conley’s Story Rosser Ends Cross-Examination

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 7th, 1913

On the opening of court Wednesday morning when Judge L. S. Roan announced that he would postpone his final decision in regard to the admissibility of Jim Conley’s evidence in regard to Leo Frank’s alleged misconduct and also to the negro’s acting on previous occasions as his “lookout,” Luther Rosser began his final effort to break the negro down.

Conley stayed on the stand until 10 o’clock and was then excused. He had been testifying for fifteen hours in all and of this thirteen hours had been under the merciless grilling of Attorney Rosser.

The negro stuck to the last to the main points of his story, and, while admitting that he had lied on previous occasions, swore that he had only tried to save himself and that about the murder he was telling the whole truth. No amount of effort could break him from this declaration.

Conley also added a new point to his story when under additional questioning from Solicitor Hugh Dorsey he swore that he had seen Frank hide Mary Phagan’s meshbag in his safe. Before that both sides had declared that they could not account for the disappearance of the pocketbook or bag in which the girl had carried her money.

Reads Black Affidavit.

Mr. Rosser opened the morning cross-examination by reading to the negro the second affidavit he made to Detective John R. Black and Harry Scott. It was in this that the darkey swore he had left home at about 9 o’clock and after visiting several saloons and poolrooms, among which was one bearing the name of the “Butt-In” saloon, he had won 90 cents at dice and then gone to the factory at about 1 o’clock. In it he had admitted to writing the murder notes, but made no mention of helping Frank dispose of the body.

Then the lawyer read the next affidavit in which the negro declared he had aided Frank in taking the dead girl’s body to the cellar in which, despite the fact that he had put into it the claim that he was telling the whole truth, he had not told certain things which he waited until he got on the stand to tell.

Mr. Rosser made Conley acknowledge to having made these affidavits and with particular emphasis called his attention to the various discrepancies between them and also between the final one and his sworn testimony.

Then the lawyer asked the witness about several conversations he is alleged by the defense to have had with various factory employees after the murder was discovered and before he was arrested.

“Jim,” began Mr. Rosser, “soon after the murder weren’t you working near where Miss Rebecca Carson was and did she say to you, ‘Jim, they ain’t got you yet for this,’ and didn’t you say, ‘No, and they ain’t goin’ to, ‘cause I ain’t done nothin’?’”

“No, sir,” replied Conley: “dat lady ain’t never said nothing like dat to me and I ain’t never said nothing like dat to her.”

“Didn’t she say, ‘Well, they’ve got Mr. Frank and he ain’t done nothing,’ and didn’t you then say, ‘Mr. Frank is ez innocent as you is and de Lord knows you ain’t guilty’?”

“No, sir,” replied Jim positively: “no, sir, Mr. Rosser, wasn’t nothing lak dat passed ‘tween us.”

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Dorsey Accomplishes Aim Despite Big Odds

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 6th, 1913

By L. F. WOODRUFF.

Practically the entire case on which the State of Georgia bases its claim on the life of Leo Frank to pay for that life taken from Mary Phagan is before the jury.

Most of the remaining evidence of importance, which the Solicitor General may introduce merely will be rebuttal to testimony, presented by Frank’s counsel.

Whether the evidence presented is strong enough to convict is a question for the jury to decide. Whether the testimony introduced by the defense will be convincing enough to cause the reasonable doubt which the law says shall make Frank a free man or whether the defense’s attack on the State’s case has been of sufficient strength to create a question in the minds of the jurors, time alone will tell.

But this fact remains unchallenged: Every single thing that Solicitor General Hugh Dorsey declared in advance that he would get before the jury is there now. It may not be enough to convict, but the case which the State said fastened the crime on Leo Frank has been put in evidence.

Dorsey Had Huge Task.

One by one the prosecutor has forged the links in the chain that he maintains fixes the guilt of the Phagan murder on Leo Frank and Leo Frank alone.

It has been long, tedious work. Dorsey has had to fight against considerable odds, but his work has been well done.

When the defense has its innings, the chain may be torn asunder as though struck by lightning, but that will be the work of the skilled attorneys who are fighting to save the life of the pencil factory superintendent.

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Stanford Recalled By Solicitor Dorsey

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

Atlanta Constitution
August 5th, 1913

Declares There Were Bars Across Door on Second Floor on Day Before Murder.

Following Sergeant Dobbs, Mell Stanford, a factory employee, who had previously testified, was recalled for a few minutes.

“Was the door on the second floor back locked or unlocked on Friday, April 25?” asked Mr. Dorsey.

“There were bars across it,” said Stanford.

“Was there any way to get down back there?”

“Only by the fire escape.”
“Was the area of the metal room cleaned up after the murder?”

“Yes, sir, during the following week.”

“Did you clean it up?” asked Mr. Rosser, who here took up the cross-examination.

“No, sir, I saw it being cleaned up, though.”

“Could a man have removed that bar to the door back there and then gone up the stairs?”

“Yes, sir.”

Stanford was then excused.

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Atlanta Constitution, August 5th 1913, “Stanford Recalled by Solicitor Dorsey,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Lawyers on Both Sides Satisfied With Conley

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

Atlanta Journal
August 5th, 1913

They Haven’t Shaken Him a Particle,” Says Dorsey—“He Has Told About 240 Lies Already,” Declares Attorney Reuben Arnold

Both the state’s attorneys and the counsel for Leo M. Frank Tuesday at noon expressed satisfaction with the progress of the cross-examination of James Conley, the negro sweeper. The negro had been on the stand then for more than nine hours, during eight hours of which he had undergone a strenuous grilling at the hands of Attorney L. Z. Rosser.

“They have not shaken him a particle,” declared Solicitor Dorsey, “and that isn’t all. I don’t believe they will be able to do so.” Attorney Frank A. Hooper, who is assisting Mr. Dorsey in the prosecution of Frank said: “Mr. Rosser will go ahead and wear himself out, and Attorney Arnold will hurl questions at Conley until he, too, grows weary, and when it is all over the negro will still be there ready for more.”

Mr. Rosser was confident that he had made great headway in discredited Conley’s testimony. He smilingly commented upon how he had tangled up the negro when he got him away from his recited story, but said that when Conley got back into his well-drilled tale he ran along like a piece of well-oiled machinery. “I’ve caught him in a mass of lies,” asserted Mr. Rosser.

“Conley has lied both specifically and generally,” declared Reuben Arnold. “He has lied about material things and he has lied about immaterial things. He has told about 340 lies since he has been under cross-examination. I kept tab on him until he had told over 300 lies, and then they came so fast I couldn’t keep up with him.”

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Atlanta Journal, August 5th 1913, “Lawyers on Both Sides Satisfied With Conley,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Dorsey Tries to Prove Frank Had Chance to Kill Girl

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 4th, 1913

NEGRO SPRINGS NEW SENSATION, ADDING TO STORY.

James Conley, the negro sweeper in the National Pencil Factory, was called to the stand in the trial of Leo M. Frank, whom he accuses of the murder of Mary Phagan, at 10:15 Monday; under the skillful questioning of Solicitor Dorsey began the recitation of his sensational story.

The negro was taken to the court in Chief Beavers’ automobile and was accompanied by his lawyer, W.M. Smith. It was learned for the first time Monday that Conley would swear that he saw Mary Phagan enter the factory just before Monteen Stover, and that she was there the entire time the Stover girl was there. He will also swear that Frank admitted to him hitting Mary Phagan in the eye with his fist, and that after he helped him carry the body to the basement he promised Frank to come back at night and dispose of the body, but lost his nerve.

James Conley, the negro sweeper about whose sensational statement accusing Leo Frank of the murder of Mary Phagan, the greatest fight of the trial will be waged, was summoned to court this morning. All the indications were that he would go on the stand this morning. The police were notified to bring him to the courthouse shortly after the trial was resumed.

Determined to make his chain of circumstantial evidence strong enough to resist the attacks of the defense, Solicitor General Hugh M. Dorsey Monday proceeded to call witnesses who will give additional testimony to show that Leo M. Frank had the opportunity to kill Mary Phagan at the time the State declares the crime was committed.

Street car men were summoned to show that the little girl had time to arrive at the factory at a time coinciding with the theory supported by the sensational evidence of Dr. Roy Harris that she was slain within forty-five minutes after having eaten her lunch of cabbage and bread.

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First Week of Frank Trial Ends With Both Sides Sure of Victory

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 3rd, 1913

Solicitor Dorsey Indicates That Real Sensation Will Be Developed for State in Closing Days of Famous Mary Phagan Mystery Case.

ANOTHER WEEK OF ORDEAL IN THE HEAT IS EXPECTED

Routing of Detective Black and Surprise in the Testimony of Pinkerton Agent Gives the Defense Principal Points Scored—Newt Lee Hurts.

Slow and tedious, almost without frills, full of bitter squabbles between lawyers, made memorable by oppressive heat, the first week of Leo Frank’s trial on the charge that he killed Mary Phagan, the little factory girl, has drawn to an end.

With the close of the week came the promise that still another six days, or more, will be consumed in taking the testimony.

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Frank Juror’s Life One Grand, Sweet Song—Not

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 2nd, 1913

O. B. Keeler.

The juror’s life is not unmixed with care.

Look him over next time you attend the Frank trial. Size up his little job. Weigh his responsibility. Consider his problems.

And then, if seeking employment, go out and sign a contract to make little ones out of big ones.

It’s a more satisfactory way of earning $2 a day.

The juror’s business is to collect evidence by the earful, sift the same, separate the true from the false, and make it into a verdict as between the Stat[e] of Georgia and Leo Frank.

On the face of it, the plan is beautifully simple.

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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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Dorsey Unafraid as He Faces Champions of the Atlanta Bar

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 1st, 1913

Up Against a Hard Proposition Youthful Solicitor Is Fighting Valiantly to Win Case.

By L. F. WOODRUFF.

Georgia’s law’s most supreme penalty faces Leo Frank.

A reputation that they can not be beaten must be sustained by Luther Rosser and Reuben Arnold.

Atlanta’s detective department’s future is swaying on the issue of the Frank trial.

But there is a man with probably as much at stake as any of the hundreds who crowd Judge Roan’s courtroom, with the exception of Frank, and he is accepting the ordeal, though he realizes it, as calmly as a person who has nothing more serious to decide than whether he will order his steak rare or well done at breakfast time.

Hugh Dorsey is hereby introduced. He is known pretty well in Atlanta without introduction but as chairmen on political meetings insists on telling the audience that the President of the United States is about to speak or that the Secretary of State is endeavoring to earn an additional amount to his yearly $12,000. Mr. Dorsey can be placed before the public without fear of violating precedent.

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Defense Not Helped by Witnesses Accused of Entrapping the State

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

Atlanta Georgian
August 1st, 1913

By JAMES B. NEVIN.

Has the State succeeded in thoroughly establishing the fact that little Mary Phagan’s tragic death was effected on the second floor of the National Pencil Factory, in Forsyth street?

It has not, of course—but it has set up by competent evidence a number of suspicious circumstances, which, if properly sustained later along, will prove damaging in the extreme to Leo Frank.

Unless these circumstances, trivial in some aspects, are braced up and backed up, however, by other much stronger circumstances, they will give the jury, in all probability, little concern in arriving at a verdict.

Thursday was not a sensationally good day for the State, although it was much better than the day before.

Twice Thursday the Solicitor General claimed that he had been “entrapped” by witnesses—and this, with the lamentable fall down of John Black the day before—served to give rise in the minds of some spectators to a faint suspicion that the State didn’t have its case very well in hand.

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Holloway Accused by Solicitor Dorsey of Entrapping State

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

Atlanta Georgian
July 31st, 1913

Here are the important developments of Thursday in the trial of Leo M. Frank:

Harry Scott, Pinkerton detective, is accused of having “trapped” the prosecution by Solicitor Dorsey, when he testifies that Frank was not nervous when he first saw him.

He is fiercely grilled by the defense after having testified to finding blood spots on the second floor, wiped over with a white substance. He testifies in addition that Herbert Haas, attorney for Frank, asked him to give him reports on his investigations before he gave them to the police and that he refused. He admits making statements that he omitted at the Coroner’s inquest.

Monteen Stover testifies that she did not see Frank in his office when she entered the factory at 12:05. She admits not having seen bureau and safe in the room.

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State Balloon Soars When Dorsey, Roiled, Cries ‘Plant’

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

Atlanta Georgian
July 31st, 1913

By JAMES B. NEVIN.

Poor John Black!

With this unwitting assistance of the Solicitor General and the assistance of Luther Rosser, he furnished all the “punch” there was in Wednesday’s story of the Frank trial.

Black evidently was undertaking to tell the truth, and was unwilling to tell more or less than the truth, but that didn’t help matters much, so far as the State was concerned.

When Solicitor Dorsey exclaimed “plant!”—which means nothing more than “faked” or “framed up” evidence for the benefit of the defense—I glanced rapidly at Rosser.

I saw precisely what I expected to see—a momentary flicker of a smile about the lips and eyes of the man, an almost immediate lightening of the lips and narrowing of the eyes, and then a quick return of the habitual ferocious frown.

I knew Dorsey had put his foot in it—put it right in, away up over the ankle, and I also knew that getting that foot back to solid ground again was going to be an undertaking pregnant with extreme difficulty and danger.

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Clash Comes Over Evidence Of Detective John Starnes

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 30th, 1913

When Sergeant Dobbs was called from the stand Detective J. M. Starnes, prosecutor of Frank and a detective attached to police headquarters was called in. He has been associated with the solicitor general throughout the Phagan investigation.

The defense and prosecution clashed in perhaps their most spectacular battle over an attempt of Attorney Rosser to force the detective into recalling the exact words of a portion of his testimony at the coroner’s inquest.

An argument was advanced by both Attorneys Dorsey and Hooper and each member of Frank’s counsel Attorneys Arnold and Rosser.

The apparent motive of the defense was to discredit certain portions of Starnes story relative to his telephonic conversation with the accused superintendent when he notified him of the tragedy at daybreak Sunday morning.

The result was a rule by Judge Roan to allow the defense to remind the witness of the exact statement he was wished to recall the exact date and circumstances. It was followed by an amendment, the question finally going unasked.

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Lee, Dull and Ignorant, Calm Under Gruelling Cross Fire

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

Atlanta Constitution
July 30th, 1913

Newt Lee, the negro night watchman of the pencil factory, who telephoned police headquarters of the finding of Mary Phagan’s body at the pencil factory, was again placed upon the stand when court convened Tuesday for the second day’s session.

Attorney Luther Z. Rosser renewed his cross-fire of questions by which he sought to confuse the negro and secure new admissions or change valuable points in his testimony, and thus expose a vulnerable point for a concentrated attack upon his entire statement.

Mr. Rosser took up practically where he had left off the afternoon before.

“Newt, when you raised your lantern you walked forward a few feet. How far did you have to go before finding out what the object that attracted you was?” he began.

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Frank Trial Will Last One Week And Probably Two, Attorneys Say

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

Atlanta Journal
July 29th, 1913

Indications Are That Trial Will Be Longest Over Which Judge Roan Has Presided, To Hold Two Sessions Daily

Attorneys both for the defense and for the prosecution of Leo M. Frank believe that his trial will last at least one week, perhaps, two weeks.

If the trial continues through more than one week it will be the longest over which Judge L. S. Roan has ever presided.

But, while he will expedite the trial as fast as possible, he intenrs [sic] to give attorneys all the time needed for the introduction of testimony and for argument.

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Brewster Denies Aiding Dorsey in Phagan Case

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

Atlanta Georgian (Hearst’s Sunday American)
July 27th, 1913

Colonel P. H. Brewster has written The Georgian a letter correcting a statement in The Sunday American. The letter quotes the report that Colonel Brewster had aided Mr. Dorsey, and proceeds:

“Where such information could have been obtained I can not understand, since it is absolutely false.

“I have had nothing whatever to do with the Frank case. My advice has not been even sought as to any question involved in the case, nor have I volunteered it, and I have prepared no briefs on any phase of the case. Mr. Dorsey, the Solicitor General, is fully competent to meet every demand his office imposes on him, and I do not wish the impression to be made that he leans on me or others, nor that I am interested in any way in the prosecution of Mr. Frank.

“The statement made in your Sunday issue is unjust to me, to the prosecution and the defense, and therefore I trust you will at once correct this statement.”

Every Bit of Evidence Against Frank Sifted and Tested, Declares Solicitor

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

Atlanta Georgian (Hearst’s Sunday American)
July 27th, 1913

Solicitor-General Hugh Dorsey, who will prosecute the case against Leo M. Frank, last night gave the Sunday American the following statement:

Without going into the merit of the State’s case against Leo M. Frank, charged with the murder of little Mary Phagan, the possibility of a mistake having been made is very remote.

To say why the State believes Frank to be guilty of this murder would be hurtful, and lay before the defense the evidence we have so carefully guarded.

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