Natural Crank, Mayor’s Shot at Broyles

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Saturday, July 19, 1913

“Dyspeptic, Fanatic, Stoneheart, Monomaniac” Are Other Terms in “Final” Retort.

Mayor Woodward Saturday said he was finally dismissing Recorder Nash R. Broyles from his mind with the statement:

“He is a natural dyspeptic, crank and a fanatic. If he ever had a heart it was turned to stone. Therefore, it is natural that he should become a monomaniac over the subject of using his czar-like authority in his own petty sphere. I don’t care anything more about him.”

Mayor Woodward again went over the head of Recorder Broyles Friday when he reduced the sentence of George Poulos, a restaurant keeper on Alabama street, who had been fined $100 and sentenced to 30 days in the Stockade fo [sic] violating the prohibition law.

The Mayor said he was much surprised that the Recorder did not make the fine $49 and the sentence 29 days so as to stay outside the jurisdiction of the Mayor.

It was expected that Mayor Woodward would issue a full pardon but he didn’t. He just reduced the fine to $49 and the sentence to 29 days.

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The Atlanta Georgian, July 19th 1913, “Natural Crank, Mayor’s Shot at Broyles,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Woodward Uses Clemency Again

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

The Atlanta Constitution

Saturday, July 19, 1913

Asserting That He Considers Recorder Mentally Irresponsible, the Mayor Announces Controversy Closed.

With the declaration that no utterance by Recorder Nash R. Broyles will induce him to resort to blackguardism or swerve him in the matter of exercising clemency, Mayor James G. Woodward yesterday reduced the sentence of George Poulas, a Greek retsaurant [sic] keeper, who was fined $100 or thirty days in the stockade for alleged violation of the near beer laws.

The extent of the mayor’s clemency was to reduce the fine assessed against Poulas to $49 or twenty-nine days in jail. Poulas was tried and convicted before W.H. Preston, acting recorder.

Considers Testimony Weak.

Mayor Woodward stated that his reason for pardoning Poulas was because the only witness against him was a 12-year-old negro boy.

“The testimony shows,” said the mayor, “that the negro boy had been in the employ of Poulas, and was discharged. By his own admission his testimony was biased and prejudiced, and hardly worthy of credit against the word of a white man.

V. Mazafladl, Greek consul, and a number of influential men of the Greek colony appeared before the mayor in behalf of Poulas, and made a strong plea for clemency.

Must Be Some Error.

Mayor Woodward said:

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Broyles Comes Back at Mayor Woodward and Mayor at Him

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

The Atlanta Journal

Friday, July 18, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Small sections of text are missing due to scanning near a crease.

Recorder Says Mayor Is Defeating Justice and Impeding Officers in Their Attempts to Check Crime


Says Recorder Plays Golf on Sunday and Then Fines Boys for Their Sunday Baseball Games

Another direct statement by Recorder Nash R. Broyles, Friday morning, of his opinion of Mayor Woodward’s clemency toward criminals convicted in police court, was issued by the recorder in writing, coupled with a verbal comment that the mayor “tells so many falsehoods that it would be futile to attempt to answer them.”

In his new expression, Recorder Broyles apologizes to the hog which he contrasted with the mayor Thursday, in [which he] says that the mayor knows less about law than a hog does about political economy.

Following is the recorder’s written statement:

“I care nothing for the mayor’s abuse. Condemnation from such a character should be considered praise. But when he says that the court of appeals on May 23, 1913, reversed me in ten cases and sustained me in seven, he tells such a ridiculous and absurd falsehood that I now apologize to the hog to which I referred yesterday when I said that the mayor knows less about law than the hog knows about economy.

“The idea of the court of appeals passing in one day on seventeen cases appealed from the recorder’s court of Atlanta! The records of that court will show that on the average there are not seventeen cases a year carried from my court to the court of appeals, and they will show also that that court has sustained me in ten cases where it has reversed me in one.

“But the mayor is, as usual, trying to side-step the issue between us. That issue is not my ability as a lawyer or a judge. I am content to let my record speak for me. The issue is that the mayor, in protecting and pardoning the […] criminals of […] and defeating justice in our courts and impeding the officers of the law in their attempt to check crime in our city; and that is the issue on which the people at the next election will call him to account.”


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Woodward-Broyles Breach Widens

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Friday, July 18, 1913


Apologizes Also to Porcine Family for Likening Woodward’s Legal Knowledge to Theirs.

Recorder Nash Broyles penned a polite note of apology to the whole hog family Friday.

With the same hand he picked up the cudgels with which again to belabor his honor, Mayor Woodward.

The Mayor, quoth the recorder, was the author of a ridiculous and absurd falsehood and it was a regrettable libel upon Mr.Hog to have to submit to a comparison with Atlanta’s Mayor.

As for the Mayor, he declared he was tired of wasting verbiage on the Recorder and that he would have nothing more to say in their quarrel. He intimated, however, that he had it in his mind to override the Recorder again by pardoning another prisoner.

Here are Recorder Broyles’ comments on the Mayor:

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Wordy War Over, Says Woodward

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

The Atlanta Constitution

Friday, July 18, 1913

In Final Fling at Broyles the Mayor Declares He Is Through With Controversies With City Officials.

The word war raging between Mayor James G. Woodward and Judge Nash R. Broyles, police magistrate, which grew out of the mayor’s use of the pardon prerogative, grew tense yesterday, when both sides hurled bitter excoriations at the other.

Mayor Woodward took a final fling at Recorder Broyles in a statement last night.

“I sympathize with Broyles,” Mayor Woodward said. “He is, in my opinion, a political accident. No one takes him seriously. He is mad with the courts for reversing him, and he is trying to take it all out on me. Really, I am sorry for the fellow.”

The mayor announced that he is through with controversies with any city officer. He stated that in the future he will welcome criticism when it is made to him, face to face.

“And when I have anything to say to Judge Broyles I’ll tell it to him.”

What Each Thinks of Other.

Both Mayor Woodward and Recorder Broyles burned up a choice collection of adjectives in their debates in the newspapers Thursday.

“He’s ignorant.

“He knows about as much of law as a hog does of political economy.

“He’s a menace to civilization.”

Those are some of the harsh things Recorder Broyles said about the mayor.


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Woodward Enemy to Society, Says Recorder Broyles

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

*Editor’s Note: Some words in the middle of this article are missing due to scanning blur near a page fold.

Recorder Replies to Mayor’s Charges of “Czar-Like” Police Court and Scores Him Severely


The Judge Says, “Never Argue With an Ignorant Man, for You Can’t Convince Him He’s Wrong”

Recorder Nash R. Broyles, in replying to Mayor James G. Woodward’s criticism of his heavy sentences, quotes the philosopher who says, “Do not argue with an ignorant man, for you can never convince him that he is wrong.”

“While Woodward does not know as much about law as a hog does about political economy,” the recorder remarked between the trial of cases Thursday morning, “I don’t mind making a statement to put the facts before the public.

“This man Griff Freeman, whose sentence the mayor reduced until it was a negligible quantity, is the most notorious blind tiger now plying his trade in Atlanta. I had sentenced him to serve thirty days in the stockade and to pay a fine of $500. The case was carried to both of the higher courts, which sustained me. The evidence of his guilt was absolute.

“After the courts had sustained my sentence, Mayor Woodward comes along and reduces the man’s fine by half, and then removes entirely the sentence of thirty days in the stockade.

“Now, this man, whom the mayor thinks should not serve in the stockade has come before me again, and again the evidence against him is flawless.

“Five white men testified that they purchased whiskey from him, and the man declares that he has been buying liquor from Freeman for the past seven years.

“What are the courts for,” asked the recorder, “if not to deal with men like Freeman, whose only business and occupation is the flagrant violation of the law?

“I must say that a man who blocks the courts in an effort to stop law violations of this and other similar criminals is an enemy to civilization and to society.

“Before Mayor Woodward reduced the Freeman […] he called me over the telephone and […] my advice […] the matter, and after I had given him the facts in the case, he told me that he would not interfere.”

The recorder in commenting upon the mayor’s attitude, cited the case of Dr. Roper, who is again in the toils after having been once pardoned by the mayor.

Wednesday afternoon Judge Broyles bound Griffin over to the state courts under $1,000 bond in each of five cases and in a sixth case he sentenced him to serve twenty-nine days in the stockade. Freeman has stayed the stockade sentence by making a $1,000 certiorari bond. He is now at liberty under a total bond of $6,000.

“I am not going to have the city stockade turned into a modern Siberia if I can help it,” declared Mayor James G. Woodward Wednesday afternoon in commenting on the report that Griff Freeman, a blind tiger, sentenced Wednesday by Judge Broyles, had previously been pardoned by him.

The mayor asserted that he didn’t pardon Freeman, but on the recommendation of two physicians, Dr. Hugh I. Battey and Dr. G.G. Hall, reduced his fine to $250 in order that he might pay it and leave the stockade, since he was physically unable to work.

The mayor, in the course of his statements about the case, characterized the methods of Judge Nash R. Broyles, recorder, as too severe and czarlike.

“Whenever it is proven to me that a prisoner deserves clemency, I will see that he gets it,” the mayor added.

Griff Freeman, the blind tiger whose fine was previously reduced by the mayor, was again before recorder Wednesday and was fined heavily in several cases and bound over to the state courts under bonds aggregating $6,000.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 17th 1913, “Woodward Enemy to Society, Says Recorder Broyles,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Mayor Asked to Probe Action of Police

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913

Declaring that police officers placed him under arrest while he was attempting to convey a woman in the throes of an epileptic fit to a hospital and forced him to be the companion to a negro in riding in the patrol wagon to the police station, Mongin F. Smith, vice president and secretary of the Eagle Stamp Works, Thursday afternoon carried a trenchant complaint of police stupidity to Mayor Woodward for investigation.

“The young woman whom we were endeavoring to place in a hospital was Miss Mabel Parker, a performer at the Old Mill Theater on Whitehall street,” declared Mr. Smith. “She was taken with a convulsion when she learned of her brother’s near death Wednesday afternoon.

“Aided by B.T. Glenn, manager of the theater, we placed her in an ambulance and drove to the Grady Hospital. While endeavoring to secure her a ward in the hospital, we were approached by two policemen who, as I understand, had been summoned by the hospital authorities when we first drove up.

“Despite our pleas to give us time to see that Miss Parker was cared for, the policemen made us go to the patrol wagon. Inside there was a negro man. The police would not hire a cab. We complained against riding with the negro and offered to hear to this and shoved us in the patrol. We rode to the police station in this manner.

“After being held for nearly an hour, while an investigation was being made, we were released.”

Mr. Smith has asked Mayor Woodward for a complete investigation of the affair, and that the guilty policemen be summarily dealt with.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 17th 1913, “Mayor Asked to Probe Action of Police,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Mayor and Broyles in War of Words

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Thursday, July 17, 1913


“Can’t Convince Ignorant Man He’s Mistaken,” Says Judge, Quoting Epictetus.


He’s ignorant.
He’s a menace to civilization.
He knows as much law as a boy does political economy.


He’s a petty czar.
My office is bigger than his.
If he wants to run my office, let him come up and give me orders.

“Do not argue with an ignorant man, for you can never convince him he is wrong.”

Recorder Nash R. Broyles, quoting Mr. Epictetus, the late well-known Greek philosopher, spoke thusly Thursday.

Following this declaration Mr. Broyles then declined to argue with Mayor James G. Woodward over the action in the case of Griff Freeman, an alleged notorious blind tiger operator, whom Broyles had sentenced to a $500 fine and a 29-day term in the stockade, when the Mayor declared he did not propose to see the city prison turned into a modern Siberia by a “too severe and czar-like Recorder.”

Impugns His Legal Lore.

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Woodward Aids Chief in Vice Crusade

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, July 15, 1913

Mayor Woodward entered the fight which Chief Beavers is waging against vice in Atlanta Tuesday when he told of a negro dive and blind tiger which he said had been reported to him Tuesday morning by a man whose name he refuses to make public.

This man, Mayor Woodward declared, had told him he had seen policemen passing through an alley in the direction of the blind tiger, though none of them had actually been seen to enter the place.

Chief Beavers ordered an investigation.

Captain Poole has been given particular instructions to probe the report that policemen visit the place.

Declaring that 50 per cent of the women arrested during the months of June and July were young girls, Mrs. Mary Bohnefeld, police matron, Tuesday afternoon placed the blame for present conditions on the immodest dress now worn by women, and also on the paint and powder demanded by the dictates of fashion.

“The dress that women are wearing nowadays,” she declared, “is a crime, and is the cause of the downfall of so many young girls. Men are encouraged to make advances when they see a girl on the streets, wearing immodest and indecent clothing and with her face painted and powdered.”

Orders closing two boarding houses were issued from headquarters this morning. Mrs. Lulu Bell, whose hotel at Fair and Peters streets was raided last week, resulting in the arrest of half a dozen persons and the telling of a white slave story by Effie Drummond, was ordered to vacate the place and close it up.

The negro joint at 76 Chestnut street, which was raided by the police Sunday morning, was also ordered closed by Chief Beavers Tuesday. Several white men were arrested when this raid was made and evidence has been obtained that the place was one of the most vicious in the city.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 15th 1913, “Woodward Aids Chief in Vice Crusade,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Caught Drinking, Three Policemen Fired Off Force

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

The Atlanta Constitution

Wednesday, July 9, 1913

Three Officers Are Suspended for Ninety Days, and Two Exonerated and Their Pay for Lost Time Restored.


Mayor Intimated He Would Ask Charges Be Preferred Against Moon, Who Said He Drank to Secure Evidence.

The scandal in the police department which grew out of revelations that eight policemen visited the resort of Ola Bradley, a negress, at No. 129 Auburn street resulted in the dismissal of three, exoneration of two, and suspension of three for ninety days, by the police board, at 1:30 o’clock this morning.

The policemen discharged were Robert A. Wood, J. P. Born and E. C. Folds.

Patrolmen J. E. McDaniels and L. W. Evans, who were under charges for neglect of duty for failure to report the visits of their partners to the resort, were found not guilty and were restored to the ranks with pay for lost time during suspension.

Three Are Suspended.

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Colyar Indicted as Libeler of Col. Felder

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, July 1, 1913

Grand Jury Develops Sensational Sequel to Famous Dictograph Scandal.

A. S. Colyar, Jr., dictographer of Colonel Thomas B. Felder, Mayor Woodward and C. C. Jones, was indicted by the Grand Jury on the charge of criminal libel Tuesday forenoon.

Colyar is the man who sought to trap Colonel Felder by means of the dictograph into offering a bribe of $1,000 for certain affidavits in the Phagan case in the possession of the police. The dictograph records as furnished an afternoon newspaper by Colyar contained the offer.

Colonel Felder swore the records were padded. Largely on Colonel Felder’s representations, the indictment was procured. John Pascal, of The Journal, was the only witness called by the Grand Jury in considering Colyar’s case.

Chief of Detectives Lanford and Colonel Felder, indicted last week by the Grand Jury, obtained their freedom by making a $500 bond. It was expected that the same bond would be imposed upon Colyar.

Much of the time Tuesday was occupied by members of the Grand Jury in probing into police affairs. Without calling any witnesses, the scandal which has shaken the department was given serious consideration for nearly two hours. The result of the discussion was not made public.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 1st 1913, “Colyar Indicted as Libeler of Col. Felder,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Colyar Not Indicted On Charge of Libel

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, July 1, 1913

The Fulton County Grand Jury returned no bill against A. S. Colyar, Jr., Tuesday forenoon on the charge of criminal libel.  Colyar came into prominence a few weeks ago by dictographing Colonel Thomas B. Felder, Mayor Woodward and C. C. Jones in Williams House No. 2.

Colyar is the man who sought to trap Colonel Felder by means of the dictograph into offering a bribe of $1,000 for certain affidavits in the Phagan case in the possession of the police. The dictograph records as furnished an afternoon newspaper by Colyar contained the offer.

* * *

The Atlanta Georgian, July 1st 1913, “Colyar Not Indicted On Charge of Libel,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Colyar Returns Promising Sensation

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Monday, June 16, 1913

A. S. Colyar is in Atlanta again, promising to spring some more sensations.

The investigator who engineered the dictographing of Thomas B. Felder and Mayor Woodward has been in Washington. He sent a letter to Atlanta before him, saying he objected to being made a goat.

It is believed Colyar saw George M. Gentry while in Washington and got from him an affidavit. This is said to be much the same as the one printed admitting that the dictograph records had been padded, as charged in Gentry’s recent affidavit, but that the general charges were upheld.

Promises Story in Letter.

Colyar’s letter, mailed before he left Washington, follows:

“He laughs best who laughs last. When you get tired publishing all of the lies the gang of political crooks are publishing on Lanford and myself I may be able to give you a story that will cause some people to sit up and take notice.

“It’s indeed comforting to think one purchased affidavit can cause a certain man in Atlanta to consider himself vindicated completely. Whitewash is cheap, as we all know.

“Then there is Mayor Woodward. He says ‘Colyar went to Mrs. Gentry’s house and worried her.’ Indeed, where did he learn this? It’s news to me. But we all know the Mayor. He is the same Mayor Hon. R. F. Maddox defeated after he (Woodward) was nominated by his party, and all Atlanta knows why. Let them make a goat out of me and see what I publish in my own defense.

“The crooks got caught. And they sent Miles away to see if he could not fool the people. A. S. COLYAR.”

Felder’s Trip Causes Comment.

Speculation was rife Monday as to the nature of the trip of Colonel Thomas B. Felder, who left Atlanta Sunday afternoon with the statement that he was bound for Cincinnati.

Rumors had it that Colonel Felder in reality is on his way to Washington, for the purpose probably of conferring with George Gentry, the missing stenographer in the recent dictagraph sensation. If this is Colonel Felder’s intention, he kept it to himself.

It has been suggested that Colonel Felder would feel much safer in going to Washington by way of Cincinnati than through the State of South Carolina.

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The Atlanta Georgian, June 16th 1913, “Colyar Returns Promising Sensation,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)

Plot Exposed, Says Felder, But Lanford Doubts Affidavit

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

The Atlanta Georgian

Wednesday, June 11, 1913

In New Sworn Statement Gentry Declares He Came to Realize He Was Dealing with “Bunch of Crooks”—Charges Lanford and Beavers Names Were Inserted.

That the dictograph conversations in which it was plotted to trap Colonel Thomas B. Felder, Mayor Woodward and C. C. Jones were padded and altered in meaning is the sensational charge brought back to Atlanta in an affidavit sworn to by George M. Gentry, who fled to Washington after the conversations, in their alleged garbled form, had been offered for publication by A. S. Colyar, Jr., and printed.

Gentry’s charges appear to substantiate in a large measure, if not entirely, the repeated statements of Colonel Felder and Mayor Woodward that an attempt had been made to make them the victims of a conspiracy.

Gentry said in making his affidavit: “I came to the realization that I had been dealing with a bunch of crooks, and decided that the best thing for me was to tell the whole story.”

Cleared, Says Felder.

Colonel Felder said that he regarded the affidavit of Gentry as a complete invidication of himself. He declared that he [sic] explanation contained in the sworn statement of Gentry on the face of it showed hat [sic] Colyar and Chief of Detectives Lanford had been in a miserable conspiracy to ruin his (Felder’s) reputation by seeking to prove him guilty of attempted bribery.

Mayor Woodward said that the affidavit bore out his previous statements that he never had mentioned the names of Chief Beavers or Chief Lanford in his conversation in room 33 of Williams House No. 2, where the trap was sprung.

“The whole thing was a frame-up. I was suspicious the moment I entered the room. I knew that something was wrong, and I was on my guard. In spite of that, they twisted and turned my statements around, as the original notes taken by young Gentry will show.”

Chief Lanford said he did not believe Gentry had signed the new affidavit.

Colonel Felder said:

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Gentry Now Says Dictograph Record Was Tampered With

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

Atlanta Journal

Wednesday, June 11th, 1913

Detective E. O. Miles Gives Out Affidavit From Young Stenographer Repudiating Transcript He Swore to


G. C. Febuary Gives Out a Statement, Telling How Notes Were Transcribed and Affidavits Made

The accuracy of the now famous pictograph records of alleged conversations between Thomas B. Felder, Mayor Woodward, C. C. Jones, E. O. Miles, G. C. Febuary and A. S. Colyar is attacked in an affidavit which E. O. Miles has turned over to Mayor Woodward and which he says he obtained from George M. Gentry, the young stenographer who took down the dictograph conversations.

This affidavit was made in Washington D. C., where Miles, one of the dictographed parties, who is a private detective, says he found Gentry. According to this affidavit, Gentry swears that a number of changes were made in the pictograph records after they were transcribed by him. The only specific change set out in the affdavit, however, is that the names of Police Chief Beavers and Detective Chief N. A. Lanford were written into the record of Mayor Woodward’s conversation by some one other than the stenographer.

In this affidavit Gentry explains his disappearance from the city by declaring that when he compared the published records with his stenographic notes he realized that he had been duped and did not care to face the humiliation which he anticipated would follow.

These dictographed records, duly sworn to by young Gentry and others, were published in The Journal, which declined to print these documents unless they were attested before a notary public. These records and affidavits are still in the possession of The Journal, and this paper has no knowledge concerning the alleged changes.


Young Gentry was permitted to use one of The Journal’s typewriters to transcribe his pictograph notes. He and Febuary were left alone in the news department Wednesday night, May 21, to do this work. They left a copy of the records in a desk drawer for The Journal. Early on the morning of May 23 Gentry furnished The Journal with an affidavit attesting the correctness of the records. Later he came to The Journal office with his notebook and read the proofs which compared with this shorthand notes, and in one or two places he made minor changes, as he said, to better conform to the original notes.

He was advised to preserve his notes so that in the event any question was raised as to their accuracy, he would have the stenographic record from which to make answer.

The Journal does not undertake to say whether there are or are not discrepancies in the transcribed records compared to the shorthand notes. It has simply relied upon the sworn records and statements furnished by Gentry and others, which records and statements, as stated above, are still in the possession of The Journal and in exactly the same condition as they were when turned over to this paper by Gentry, February and others. Continue Reading →

Jury Will Probe Dictagraph Row

jury-willAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution

Thursday, June 5th, 1913

A. L. [sic] Colyar, Jr., George M. Gentry and G. C. Febuary Summoned at Request of Chief Lanford

An investigation of the separate phases of the row resulting from the dictagraph traps laid by city detectives for Attorney Thomas B. Felder and Mayor James G. Woodward is believed to be forecast on the grand jury by the summoning before it of A. L. Colyar, Jr., George M. Gentry and G. C. Febuary. All these men played an important part of the performance and were summoned it is claimed at the request made by N. A. Lanford, chief of the detective department.

One of the most startling features of the afternoon session was the probing into the affairs of Police Commissioner William P. Fain. Allen Young, a real estate dealer, was put upon the stand and is said to have been asked to furnish proof in regard to the revelations in which Fain was said to have been the central figure in a carousal in an Ivy street house.

Whipping Charge Answered.

It is claimed that Fain also mistreated one of the women most brutally and that when the police answered the women’s screams and raided the place they arrested Fain, who was later given his liberty by order of higher police officials.

Mr. Fain made the following statement to a Constitution reporter:

“In answer to the charges which appeared against me in an afternoon paper, I beg to say in justice to my friends and the public that I am not in the least surprised at any accusations that have been or may be brought against me or any other city official who is publicly known as a strong supporter of James L. Beavers, chief of police and his administration of the police department.”

As the main issue was directed at him and his department, it is but natural that the same muckrakers would also attack his supporters with the hope of at least sway in public opinion to suit their ends regardless of the cost to others. Continue Reading →

Vice List Wanted by Chief Beavers; Promises Probe

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

Atlanta Constitution

Wednesday, June 4th, 1913

Head of Police Department Invites Carl Hutcheson to Furnish Him With List of Houses.


Grand Jury Determined to Go to Bottom of Vice Allegations, But Will Not Touch Bribery Charge at Present.

Renewed activities on the part of the police “vice squad” have come with the taking up vice probe by the grand jury, which was started yesterday morning, when a number of principals in the Felder-Beavers controversy were summoned to tell what they know of alleged operation of vicious houses and hotels in Atlanta.

The grand jury will probe deeply into the charges hurled at the police by Attorneys Thomas B. Felder and Carl Hutcheson, following the dictagraphing of Colonel Felder and Mayor James G. Woodward by city detectives, and the charges that Colonel Felder had attempted to bribe G. C. Febuary, clerk to Police Chief James L. Beavers. This was made apparent Tuesday by orders issued for the summoning of additional witnesses for the hearing today.

It was charged by Attorneys Felder and Hutcheson that numbers of vicious houses were in operation, and that the police were either unaware of them and were incompetent, or that the police were in league with the proprietors.

Beavers Asks For List.

“If Mr. Hutcheson will give me a list of houses where he has proof that illegal practices are carried on, I will arrest the persons responsible,” declared Chief Beavers. “We have been making every effort to apprehend such places and would be glad to have evidence given by any one.”

At present there are twenty-two men on the “vice squad,” and they go on duty each evening with instructions to arrest proprietors or inmates of any houses or hotels where they can find proof of immoral practices. Already several arrests have been made in raids.

Gives List of Houses.

When summoned before the grand jury, Attorney Hutcheson produced a list of thirty houses and hotels, of which he has personal knowledge, according to his statement. Attorney Hutcheson remained before the body for nearly an hour and before leaving gave the foreman, L. H. Beck, a list of witnesses to be summoned to back up his allegations. Continue Reading →

Grand Jury Calls for Thos. Felder and Police Heads


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

Atlanta Constitution

Tuesday, June 3rd, 1913

Subpoenas Served Monday Night on the Principals in Dictagraph Case and in Charges of Corruption.


Mayor Woodward, Col. Felder, Chief Beavers, Chief Lanford, Carl Hutcheson and Jno. Black Subpoenaed

That the Fulton county grand jury will undertake today an investigation of both sides of the Beavers-Felder controversy was made apparent by the formal summons issued last night to all the principals in the affair.

An added element of mystery to the investigation comes in the attempt made to summon Mrs. Mima [sic] Formby, the woman who made affidavit that Leo M. Frank, now indicted for the murder of Mary Phagan, attempted to rent a room from her for himself and a girl on the night of the murder.

Many Subpoenas Issued.

Mayor Woodward, Chief Beavers, Colonel Felder, Chief Lanford, Charlie Jones, proprietor of the “Rex” saloon; Attorney Carl Hutcheson, City Detective, John Black and Mrs. Formby were the principals upon whom Foreman Beck ordered subpoenas served Monday night.

Charlie Jones was served in person with a summons to attend the grand jury this morning in the case of “The State versus John Doe,” the orders, with the exception of Mrs. Formby, who is said to have left the city, were notified by telephone that their presence was required Tuesday morning before the grand jury.

The charges made by Chief Lanford and other detectives in his force that Colonel Felder had offered a bribe of $1,000 for an affidavit made by Mr. and Mrs. J. W. Coleman, parents of the murdered Phagan girl, and also for other affidavits in the case, and the ensuing charges hurled at the police department by Col. Felder and Attorney Hutcheson, in which the department was charged with graft and corruption stirred Atlanta.

Beavers Asks Probe.

Chief Beavers immediately asked that the grand jury take the matter up and go to the bottom of the charges against himself and the men under him, and Colonel Felder declared that he was ready at any time for the charges against him to be investigated.

That the grand jury would take up the matter at an early date and probe, it has been the general belief of Atlantans who read of the various charges, and when it was announced last week by Solicitor Dorsey that the grand jury would meet on Tuesday morning it immediately became the general belief that the special session would be for this purpose. Continue Reading →

Chief James L. Beavers’ Reply to Mayor Woodward

Chief James LAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Constitution

Tuesday, May 27th, 1913

“If Beavers and Lanford permitted Febuary, ‘a trusted man,’ to go out and circulate lies about corruption in the police department in an effort to trap someone, they have debauched their officers, and the sooner they are put out the better it will be for the men who work under them.”

Mayor James G. Woodward made the above reply to Chief James L. Beavers in a statement to The Constitution late Monday afternoon. They mayor declared that Febuary’s part in the conspiracy has destroyed his usefulness with the department, and he is not fit to serve with honorable men.

“In my opinion, and I believe every decent citizen of Atlanta will agree with me, Febuary is not fit to serve in the department in any capacity.” Mayor Woodward continued. “How can Beavers or Lanford, or the members of the police commission, place faith in him. He has dragged the department through filth of his own making. He has cast reflection, by his act, on the blue uniform.”

Beavers’ Charge Refuted.

Mayor Woodward scathingly denounced Chief Beavers’ allegations that he (Woodward) urged the reopening of the Manhattan avenue district. He admits telling Beavers that the district would be opened as a result of public demand for the interest of society, because of the scattered conditions.

He declared that he has never placed a straw in the way of Chief Beavers’ vice crusade, and explained that whenever he called the chief to his office it was for the purpose of referring complaints to him—complaints of bad conditions in respectable neighborhoods.

Mayor Woodward said that on one occasion he referred to the chief a letter written by a respectable woman—the mother of little children—who complained that there was an immoral house near her home, and she wanted the police to protect her and her babies.

“This woman told me that she had written Chief Beavers about the house some ten days before she wrote me, and nothing was ever done,” Mayor Woodward said. “All that I have ever heard of the complaint is that the house is quieted down.” Continue Reading →

Mason Blocks Attempt to Oust Chief

Mason Blocks AttemptAnother in our series of new transcriptions of contemporary articles on the Leo Frank case.

Atlanta Georgian

Monday, May 26th, 1913

Police Board Minority as Anxious to Overthrow Chairman as Beavers and Lanford.

Well informed politicians declared Monday that any efforts to remove Chief of Police Beavers and Chief of Detectives Newport Lanford were doomed to failure because of the support of the two officers by Carlos Mason, chairman of the Police Board, and his supporters.

Despite rumors of changes of line-up on account of developments of the last few days, all indications are that, if the issue of removing Beavers and Lanford is made, the relative strength of the two old factions will remain constant, as follows:

How Board Lines Up.

For Beavers and Lanford—Chairman Carlos H. Mason, First Ward; W. P. Fain, Second Ward; W. A. Vernoy, Third Ward; B. Lee Smith, Fourth Ward; J. N. McEachern, Seventh Ward; A. R. King, Ninth Ward, and Graham P. Dozier, Tenth Ward. Total, 8.

Against Beavers and Lanford—Mayor Woodward; George E. Johnson, Sixth Ward, and Robert C. Clark, Eighth Ward.

Doubtful—A. R. Colcord, chairman of the Council Police Committee. Continue Reading →