Young Woman Tells Startling Story of Vice From “Inside”

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

The Atlanta Journal

Monday, July 7, 1913

Confessions to Chief of Police Beavers Involve Downtown Hotel, Mention Names of Other Women and Men


Police Again Arrest Mrs. Frierson, Recently Pardoned by Mayor Woodward in Controversy With Judge Broyles

Revelations of vice conditions from the inside were laid before Chief of Police Beavers Monday morning by the confession of a young woman who gives her name as Hattie Smith and says that her parents live at a certain number on Marietta street.

Chief Beavers immediately detailed men to investigate the disclosures, and the indications were that several arrests would follow and that a case would be made against at least one downtown hotel and perhaps against two.

The young woman, who says that she is seventeen years old, told the chief a story replete with startling admissions and placed in his hands the evidence which, if it is corroborated, will convict several people of serious charges.

She had been arrested in a downtown hotel with a man. Her companion was released upon a small bond, being cited to appear in court with her Monday afternoon.

The young woman admitted a joy-riding career during several months past, leading up finally to the day recently when with the aid of another woman more experienced than herself she established a residence in one of the downtown hotels. Her admissions involved that hotel and others, and involved, too, several men whom she named. The other woman arranged the details of her hotel residence, said she registered her on the hotel registry, and otherwise encouraged her.

The charge against her on the police docket is “disorderly conduct.”

The police believe that her arrest and confession together form one of the most important chapters in the crusade against vice in Atlanta.


*Editor’s Note: Some parts of the following paragraph are illegible in the source document.

Other arrests by members of the vice […] were made at 3 o’clock.

[…] together with Mrs. T. B. Frierson, as she is known to the police, and C. N. Hughes who gives his address as […] East Fair street.

Mrs. Frierson is the woman over whose incarceration in the stockade for disorderly conduct Mayor Woodward  and Recorder Broyles found themselves at issue recently. Mayor Woodward pardoned her. Her lawyer contended vigorously that his client was passing through the city on her way from a visit to her mother in Rome, back to her husband in Jacksonville. She wanted to go on and rejoin her husband, said the lawyer. She was released by the mayor’s order, but remained in Atlanta.

Rev. Hugh Wallace, pastor of the Jones Avenue Baptist church, called at police headquarters early Monday afternoon and gave to the chief of police the names of a store and a sanitarium in Atlanta where, said he, improper conduct has been noticed.

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The Atlanta Journal, July 7th 1913, “Young Woman Tells Startling Story of Vice From “Inside”,” Leo Frank case newspaper article series (Original PDF)