Negro’s Affidavit Not Given Much Credence

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

Atlanta Journal

Thursday, June 5th, 1913

Even the City Detectives, It Is Said, Attach Very Little Importance to Document

Very little importance, it is said, is attached by the city detectives to the sensational and incoherent affidavit of Minola McKnight, the negro cook at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Emil Selig, 68 East Georgia avenue, where Leo M. Frank, the pencil factory superintendent, and his wife reside.

Attorney Luther Rosser, chief counsel for the indicted superintendent, read the affidavit with apparent amusement. He had no comment to make, but it was evident that Mr. Rosser did not regard the affidavit seriously.

Mr. and Mrs. Selig and Mrs. Frank read the affidavit in The Journal, and although they would make no statement for publication, they appeared to view the negro woman’s testimony as absurd and ridiculous on the face of it.

But little of the cook’s testimony, even should she stick to her story until the day of the trial, will be admissible in court. It is largely alleged hearsay evidence and, therefore, barred.

The woman, in her affidavit, swears that Frank came home to lunch on the Saturday of the Mary Phagan murder, about 1:30; that he did not eat anything and that he remained only about ten minutes. If the negress knows of her own knowledge that this is true she can so testify in court. However, Mr. Selig, Frank’s father-in-law, will swear as he did before the coroner’s inquest, that Frank ate lunch with him and afterwards lay down on a lounge for a nap. Mrs. Selig will reiterate her testimony at the inquest, which was to the effect that Frank came home about 1:30 o’clock and that she and her daughter, Mrs. Frank, were dressed and ready to go to a grand opera matinee; that soon after his arrival they left.

The McKnight woman, in her affidavit, declares that some time on Sunday she overheard Mrs. Frank tell her mother, Mrs. Selig, that Frank came home drunk the night before, that he was very restless and acted queerly; that he told her (Mrs. Frank) that he was in trouble and begged her to get his pistol in order that he might kill himself. Continue Reading →

New Theory is Offered in Phagan Mystery

Solicitor Dorsey in his office; a snapshot of the Phagan case prosecutor taken by a Georgian photographer.

Solicitor Dorsey in his office; a snapshot of the Phagan case prosecutor taken by a Georgian photographer.

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

Atlanta Georgian

Tuesday, May 13th, 1913

Detectives Not Centering All Their Efforts on Frank and Lee Now.

Detectives in Phagan mystery are not centering all their efforts upon Frank and Lee. New theories have been advanced, new clews examined and every possible theory is being investigated.

It was because of these rumors on the streets to-day that a report was spread that an entirely new lead was being followed by Solicitor Dorsey that might eliminate both Frank and Lee.

Solicitor Dorsey paid very little attention to the reports.

“There are no developments so far,” he said, “which would tend to swerve the prosecution from its present course. The cases of the two men held will be placed before the Grand Jury as soon as the evidence against them can be properly shaped, unless other developments justify a change.”

New Theory Investigated.

The new theory alluded to has been submitted by a private detective employed by the Solicitor’s office. The man, whose identity has not been revealed, has been working along lines entirely at variance to those pursued by the prosecutor. Mr. Dorsey stated that while as yet no evidence has been produced to substantiate the proposed solution, that his investigators have taken the matter up and will go to the bottom of it. Every available means will be used to prove or disprove the detective’s theory. Continue Reading →

My Son Innocent, Declares Mother of Leo M. Frank

My Son Innocent

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

Atlanta Constitution

Tuesday, May 13th, 1913

“I Am Confident That He Will Be Proven Not Guilty of This Terrible Crime,” She Tells Reporter


W. J. Burns Secured to Take Charge of Phagan Mystery Investigation—Engaged by Friends of Murdered Girl


It was reported on good authority this morning that officers working upon the Mary Phagan murder would make a new arrest today or tomorrow which is expected to throw an entirely new light upon the case.

None of the officials have discussed this new phase of the mystery and whether or not their activity of the past few days has resulted in the unearthing of clews leading to an arrest is unknown.

My son is entirely innocent but it is a terrible thing that even a shadow or suspicion should fall upon him I am sure of his innocence and am confident that he will be proven not guilty of this terrible crime.

Mrs. Rudolph Frank, aged mother of Leo M. Frank, who is held in the Tower as a suspect in the Mary Phagan mystery case, made this statement yesterday afternoon to a representative of The Constitution at her home in Brooklyn.

She had just informed her friends of the arrest of her son in Atlanta and of the charge made against him in the Gate City. She had not told them earlier because of her belief that he would be quickly set at liberty.

Mrs. Frank has not seen her son since she came south with her husband to attend his marriage. It is probable, however, that she will soon come again to be with him at the trial. Continue Reading →